City council holding special meeting
The San Diego City Council will hold a special meeting tomorrow to consider overriding Mayor Jerry Sanders’ veto of a package of mid-year budget cuts.
Last month, Sanders called for $43 million in budget cuts to help close a mid-year spending shortfall caused by declining tax revenues amid the slumping economy.
The City Council authorized about $37 million of the cuts, but refused to close seven libraries and nine recreation centers and rejected Sanders’ proposal to trim the number of San Diego Fire-Rescue Department companies active on any given day from 60 to 58.
At the time, Sanders said he wouldn’t veto the decision.
However, on Monday, the City Council went even farther, restoring another $600,000 to delay the closure of six customer service centers and keep three maintenance positions.
Council members proposed using one-time reserve funds to keep the facilities open.
Late Wednesday night, Sanders issued a memo to the City Council stating his intent to veto their budget resolution.
Sanders maintains that the action taken by the City Council on Monday to restore the $600,000 was in violation of the charter.
In his memo, Sanders said his office has “repeatedly and consistently’’ sought a legal opinion on the matter from outgoing City Attorney Michael Aguirre.
“However, the City Attorney’s Office did not provide a timely written confirming opinion that would have invalidated the ordinance, despite repeated requests,’' forcing his veto, Sanders wrote.
“It is my strong hope that the City Council, when next considering how to address the city’s budgetary crisis, will act in accordance with the city charter under which we all serve,’' Sanders’ memo states.
The City Council is under tight time restraints to get the mid-year budget changes approved. Four council members will be replaced Monday due to term limits, and Aguirre lost his reelection bid.
Michelle Ganon, spokeswoman for outgoing City Council President Scott Peters, said the City Council will consider overriding the mayor’s veto during an already scheduled special meeting on Friday.
Ganon said the item was added to the docket within the 24-hour notification period mandated under state disclosure laws.