New City Budget Includes $500,000 for Expanded Ocean Beach Library

by on June 11, 2019 · 3 comments

in Ocean Beach, San Diego

 

The great news coming out of Monday’s San Diego City Council’s approval of a $1.6 billion budget is an inclusion of $500,000 for architectural work on an expanded Ocean Beach Library.

Insiders may have known about this monetary grant to push the OB Library’s expansion forward, but the report by David Garrick at the San Diego Union-Tribune described it as “among the last-minute additions” during the 2 hour public hearing. This half-million will be, of course, for the coming fiscal year, which starts July 1.

Other budgetary items noted by Garrick and of possible interest to our readers include:

  • Among minor, last-minute adjustments include money for lifeguard staffing,
  • $100,000 for a city arborist;
  • tree trimming;
  • library programs such as youth tutoring;
  • no cut hours at libraries or recreation centers;
  • continuation of “the city’s aggressive spending in recent years on street repair”;
  • programs to fight homelessness;
  • significant expansion of “Clean San Diego,” launched in 2017 to remove trash and debris from at illegal dumping sites, from $4 million to $10.3 million;
  • $1 million to study whether city contracts are awarded equitably based on gender and ethnicity;
  • $200,000 for park rangers to cover downtown and Chollas Creek,
  • $50,000 to translate community planning group documents into other languages;
  • $25,000 to help the Civil Complaint Review Board, a watchdog panel for the Police Department, get legal advice when necessary;
  • $300,000 to hire two supplemental staff positions covering the entire council, a communications official and a government affairs coordinator.

The budget was approved by the City Council by a vote of 8 to 1, with Councilman Scott Sherman voting “no.”

Garrick reported:

The council also moved three new anti-homelessness positions away from the mayor’s office and into the San Diego Housing Commission, which is overseen directly by the council. The move comes with a new homelessness strategic plan expected to be unveiled this summer.

Monday’s new spending is in addition to $7 million Mayor Kevin Faulconer added last month to the budget, which is based on a blueprint he unveiled in April. The money added last month covers expanded homelessness programs, an anti-graffiti campaign, housing incentives for new police officers and safety efforts related to electric scooters. …

The mayor’s proposed budget would increase spending by just over 8 percent from the ongoing budget year, or about $116 million. The increase is mostly the result of rising employee salaries, especially for police officers, and a $26 million spike in the city’s annual pension payment.

The booth of the Friends of the OB Library at the OB Street Fair in 2015.

This good news of the half-million for advocates and supporters of the OB Library expansion – a plan literally “in the works” for over 15 years – will certainly place smiles on their faces. And the Friends of the OB Library certainly deserve mucho credit for sustaining the campaign for the expansion these last handful of years.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Avatar Judy Collier June 11, 2019 at 1:09 pm

Thank you for this great good news story. I didn’t know anything about the $500,ooo and I am thrilled the the city is supporting our library expansion so definitively. Thank you informing us all.

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Avatar Vern June 12, 2019 at 5:44 am

That’s really good news for the OB library.

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sealintheSelkirks sealintheSelkirks June 15, 2019 at 12:57 pm

Excellent. Reality with a smile for a change!

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