WEATHER »

Goleta Faces Budget Deficit

City Manager Says Problem Is Short Term


In a telephone interview Friday, Dan Singer, Goleta’s city manager, confirmed that the city’s preliminary budget plans have not yet been finalized. He did say, however, that the City Council predicts a $1.1 million budget deficit for the 2010 fiscal year, as revenues hover around $14.1 million and expenditures exceed $15 million.

Singer said that though the city is facing fiscal difficulties, council members expect the situation to improve in a few years. He explained that Goleta’s Revenue Neutrality Agreement, which allows for Santa Barbara County to receive a percentage of the city’s taxes, does not significantly exacerbate Goleta’s budget problems. Concerns have been raised by some city residents and elected officials - Councilmember Eric Onnen and many members of the Goleta Valley Chamber of Commerce, among others - that the county was cutting too far into the city’s revenue in a deal they said was flawed from its inception. Prepared in 2002, the agreement was a precondition for the incorporation of Goleta into the county, and though it is not particularly favorable to the city’s fiscal situation, Singer said it represents only a short-term hurdle. “Like any other agreement with the state, we’d like it to eventually sunset and go away,” Singer said, “but we are in a really favorable position even though we have this short-term problem for the next few years. The agreement allows for a big bump at the 10th year of incorporation, so in three more years we’re going to get a significant [increase in revenue].”

The Goleta City Council will meet again Tuesday to discuss budget challenges, revenue neutrality, and how to manage both.

Rachel Reeves is an Independent intern.

To submit a comment on this article, email letters@independent.com or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email tips@independent.com.



event calendar sponsored by:

Pledge of Allegiance Is Back at SBCC Board Meetings

Unruly City College meeting raises unaddressed racial tensions.

Women’s March Organizes Against Emergency Declaration

Grass-roots groups to hold protests on Presidents' Day.

Caltrans Estimates 154 Will Open Mid-March

Repairs ongoing at a cost of $2.2 million after Whittier Fire debris blocks culvert.

County Crude Report Highlights Greka, Plains, and Other Spills

Three major onshore projects are now up for consideration.

Carbajal Joins Bill Protecting National Monuments

It would give Congress, not the president, the power to redraw boundaries.