shortfall -- though the promised payback with interest should provide
San Francisco (and other municipalities) with the ability to secure
loans and multiple cities may form "borrowing pools." More fun than a "drowning pool," but only by so much.
The amount that may be cut from San Francisco's health and human services department, meanwhile, is totally up in the air. While draconian wipeouts of up to $70 million were envisioned when Schwarzenegger proposed eliminating programs entirely, now cuts of "$3 million to $5 million" are the sort Zmuda is bracing for (You see? "Treatable.").
Still, when asked if the contingincy of roughly $17 million in the city's as-yet unsigned budget would cover the funds San Francisco can now no longer can count on from the state, Zmuda quickly responded, "oh no."
In the past, the mayor had the ability to simply make changes to the budget as he saw fit -- meaning that a shortfall in state funds could result in Mayor Gavin Newsom simply axing city programs willy-nilly. Yet thanks to changes in the city's annual appropriation ordinance indroduced a scant week ago by Supervisor John Avalos, this is no longer the case.
Now the controller's office will issue a report within a week of the state budget passing (i.e. this week or early next), after which Newsom has 21 days (blackjack!) to tinker with the budget to make up the difference. And then the supes get 45 more days to tinker with Newsom's tinkering.
For those who just spent months fighting budget wars, perhaps the only worthwhile quote from The Godfather, Part III is in order: "Just when I thought I was out ... They pull me back in!"