Newsom unveils proposed budget 

Mayor Gavin Newsom unveiled his proposed $6.48 billion San Francisco budget Tuesday afternoon, saying that despite the economic turmoil the spending plan invests in jobs, protects public safety and preserves the social safety net for The City’s most vulnerable.

The proposed city and county budget closes an historic deficit, an economic challenge brought on by the nation’s financial plunge, and comes on the heels of already having had to cut services to the bone to close the previous year’s shortfall.

The $6.48 billion proposed budget is a decrease from Newsom’s budget submission last year, which totaled $6.6 billion. 

“Even amidst great economic challenges, we have worked hard to protect our values and invest in our priorities through this proposed budget — jobs, public safety and the social safety net for the most vulnerable,” Mayor Gavin Newsom said in a statement. “Working in partnership with our public employee unions and by reforming City government to make it more efficient, we are protecting jobs and vital services at a time when our State government and cities across California are facing even deeper cuts, new tax increases and large-scale layoffs.”

Newsom unveiled his proposed budget at the corner of Sixth and Market streets, at a nonprofit art organization, the Luggage Store, 1007 Market St.

Closure of the $483 million deficit came with the help of labor unions, which agreed to concessions. Many gave up the equivalent of 4.62 percent wage cuts for the next two fiscal years. Deals were being made as late as last week. Newsom announced then a tentative agreement with police and fire labor unions to give back about $40 million in wages and benefits.

The proposed San Francisco budget for the fiscal year, which begins July 1, will now go before the Board of Supervisors five-member Budget and Finance Committee, chaired for the second consecutive year by Supervisor John Avalos. The committee will hold numerous hearings on departments’ budgets, make adjustments, negotiate spending priorities with Newsom and ultimately forward it to the full board for adoption.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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