June Advocacy Update
Monday, June 5, 2017
by: Julianna Tetlow, California Strategies

Section: Government Affairs

Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s Fiscal Year 2018 Proposed Budget
At May’s Government Affairs Committee staff for Mayor Kevin Faulconer presented the Mayor’s fiscal year 2018 Budget.  Despite rising pension costs, the proposed budget maintains its focus on neighborhoods, infrastructure, and street repair.

The 2018 $3.57 billion budget is balanced notwithstanding a $324.5 million payment to the pension system, an increase of  $63.4 from the last fiscal year. To ensure the budget was balanced reductions had to take place. The Mayor’s office requested budget reduction proposals from each department of a minimum of 3.5% and received a total of $40.3 million in potential cuts. Of these, the Mayor’s office accepted $22.3 million ensuring minimal impacts to core services, retained increased library and park recreation hours, and had no impacts on public safety or public health.
Infrastructure investments of $445.4 million include $79.9 million in street repairs, which equates to 349 miles, $74.1 million for the Pure Water program, $24.7 million for projects in the Parks and Recreation Department, and $4.5 million for sidewalks and walkways. Additionally, $4.1 million will be dedicated to important transportation project including traffic calming projects, bike facilities, and traffic signal improvements.
The fiscal year 2018 proposed budget is balanced, fully funds the increased pension payment, funds reserves to policy target
levels, maintains investments in neighborhoods and infrastructure, and maintains core service levels – all crucial priorities for the Mayor.
If you have any questions about the Mayor’s budget proposal or are interested in learning more about the Government Affairs Committee, please contact Julianna Tetlow at jtetlow@calstrat.com.
Pure Water Update From the City of San Diego’s Public Utilities Department
Coastal Commission Renews Point Loma Permit, Paving the Way for Pure Water San Diego
The City's Pure Water San Diego Program is one step closer to reality with the California Coastal Commission's unanimous approval for a modified permit for the Point Loma Wastewater Treatment Plant (Point Loma).
Without the modified permit, converting Point Loma for secondary treatment capabilities would cost $1.8 billion. The City's commitment to reducing ocean discharges and implementing the Pure Water Program were factors in the Commission's decision to approve the modified permit.
With the comprehensive water recycling strategy provided by the Pure Water Program, ocean discharges will eventually be reduced by more than 50 percent and San Diego will produce a local drinking water supply equivalent to one-third of its future drinking water needs by 2035. It's one of the major sustainability projects that support Mayor Faulconer's Climate Action Plan. The first phase of the Pure Water Program is expected to be completed by 2021 and will provide approximately 15 percent of the City's water supply needs.
Federal law requires all wastewater treatment plants to renew their discharge permits every five years. Since 1995, Point Loma has operated under a modified permit and avoided expensive and space-prohibitive modifications to the plant. 
Support from Mayor Faulconer, local environmental
groups and regional business advocacy organizations continue to be key to securing the permit approval.
The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to finalize the approval of the modified permit within the next month. Learn more about the Pure Water Program here.

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