2012-07-06 / Front Page
Conservative budget approved
The City of Camarillo continues to report a healthy budget despite the ongoing slumped economy and the state’s dissolution of redevelopment agencies.
The Camarillo City Council unanimously adopted a balanced budget of $107 million for fiscal year 2012-13 during its June 27 meeting. The fiscal year started July 1.
The city’s finance department, led by Ronnie Campbell, called the budget conservative and fiscally responsible. Camarillo’s general fund of $31.1 million will continue to pay for public safety, the library and several service organizations and events.
“The staff has done a really good job as far as watching where the public’s money goes,” said Councilmember Mike Morgan.
More than half of the general fund— about $17 million—goes toward the Camarillo Police Station, citizens patrol and emergency operations.
The second largest item in the general fund is the $2.5 million spent on public works such as street maintenance. City hall payroll accounts for $2.3 million.
The general fund also provides $81,100 to 16 organizations and $659,000 for city-sponsored events such as Fiesta, the holiday parade, the Fourth of July fireworks show at Adolfo Camarillo High School, concerts in the park and the Meals on Wheels program.
The budget passed quickly because most of the council’s questions and concerns were answered during a study session in early June.
After a discussion, the council decided not to allot $15,000 for the East County Courthouse in Simi Valley, which had been scheduled to close June 25.
The county Board of Supervisors and the cities of Simi Valley and Moorpark contributed money to the court’s $275,000 operating budget in order to keep the courthouse open two days a week.
Mayor Jan McDonald said the cost is an example of the state passing down service responsibilities— and its costs—to counties and cities.
“It’s just the beginning of a long list, and where do we draw the line?” McDonald said.
The city’s overall budget also includes capital improvement projects ($26 million), water ($12.6 million), sewer ($10.7 million), trash ($6.3 million) facility operations ($4.8 million) and library operations ($3.8 million).
The city’s finance department cautioned the City Council that Camarillo may see less in the way of state funding for local roadways and would be forced to find another revenue source to pay for future road improvement projects.