County looks at ways to save money |

County looks at ways to save money

Jeff Munson, Tahoe Daily Tribune

A proposal to scrap a policy that allows special enterprise districts to reap some property tax money will be taken up by El Dorado County leaders on Tuesday.

With a combination of fiscal belt-tightening and evaluating where property tax money is going, County Administrative Officer Laura Gill will ask for the policy change on the heels of adopting the county’s 2004 fiscal budget.

Supervisors will meet at 9 a.m. today in Placerville for budget hearings and 8 a.m. Tuesday to discuss the proposed policy change and finalize the county’s budget, estimated at around $272 million. Both meetings will be held at the Supervisors Meeting room, 330 Fair Lane, Building A.

The county’s loss of property tax revenue to these special enterprise districts needs to end because the districts have a “far greater ability to control their own revenue generation through fees and charges,” Gill said in a report.

“The county and non-enterprise special districts would benefit from the additional funds no longer distributed to enterprise districts.” Gill concluded.

No hard dollar figures were provided in Gill’s report regarding how many or how much the enterprise districts get from local property taxes.

The cutting and belt-tightening will continue today and Tuesday, with the adoption of the budget scheduled late Tuesday. District 5 Supervisor Dave Solaro said county department heads have been good at trimming their budgets and there are some departments that have staved off large cuts simply by not filling positions.

Still, it won’t be known until Tuesday or perhaps even three months from now whether any of the county’s 32 departments will experience layoffs.

“It’s too early to say. I do know that positions are being looked at and that the county CAO will come back with a complete reorganization plan by Dec. 1,” Solaro said.

In other action Tuesday, supervisors will:

n Consider an ordinance that would require contractors to recycle at least one-half of their construction and demolition debris that it takes to county landfills.

The proposal is meant to cut down on waste at the county’s landfills, which have not met the state’s mandated 50 percent diversion measure. The county has until 2004 to meet the mandate or else face fines.

According to County Environmental Management Director Jon Morgan, about 15 to 20 percent of the county’s disposed waste stream consists of construction and demolition materials such as lumber, concrete, rock and soil.

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