SAN FRANCISCO—The San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved a $13.6 billion budget by a vote of 10-1 during a meeting on Tuesday, September 22. Supervisor Catherine Stefani was the sole vote against the budget.
On July 31, Mayor London Breed proposed the city’s budget which included a $120 million divestment from law enforcement, put toward the city’s African American community, homelessness, behavioral health, and COVID-19 response. The mayor also closed a large budget deficit without layoffs.
In August 2020, the Board of Supervisors’ Budget and Finance Committee approved the budget submitted by Mayor Breed, while they proposed to use $59 million from the city’s Proposition F (Business Tax Overhaul fund).
The budget approved by the Board of Supervisors on September 22 includes:
- $120 million investment in the African American community.
- $60 million for Mental Health Association San Francisco.
- $14.7 million for the city’s COVID-19 response.
- $17.3 million for housing subsidies.
- $10.7 million to expand the Right to Counsel program.
- $5.3 million for the new Community Learning Hubs.
- $2 million for food security initiatives during the pandemic.
Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer of Budget and Finance Committee said that the board and the committee have been pressured due to the need for managing the budget, including investing in the urgent community needs during the pandemic and combatting racism. She commented she was “extraordinarily proud of this budget.”
Supervisor Stefani who voted against the budget commented, “The budget as amended is untenable.” She claimed that the budget depends on state and federal reimbursements and revenue from a tax measure that has not been approved, which could increase the city’s expenses.
Budgets are statements of values, but the Board of Supervisors' proposal drained down the City's reserves and failed to provide enough support to those who need it most: our small business community and newly unemployed neighbors.
That's why I voted no.https://t.co/di4YWkmEAS
— Supervisor Catherine Stefani (@SupStefani) September 23, 2020
Supervisor Rafael Mandelman thinks the city does “not really done” with the budget.
“There is a tremendous uncertainty,” he said, according to the SF Examiner. We are going to have another budget to do next year. We may have to do work on the budget before then.”
The San Francisco Board of Supervisors is going to vote on the budget proposal next week for a final decision.