Over the past several years, Stanislaus County has seen an unexpected increase in revenue, allowing the County to build a healthy reserve and implement strategies to leverage those savings in support of local parks, libraries, and aging County facilities. In the 2024 Adopted Budget, the Board of Supervisors will now consider expanding service levels while viewing the current landscape “through a lens of caution,” according to Stanislaus County Chief Executive Officer Jody L. Hayes.
“Navigating change is a continual exercise in agility, patience, and wisdom. Directing an organization through change is a formidable task, and an awesome responsibility,” said Hayes.
The County pledged nearly $500,000 in one-time and $3.1 million in ongoing Discretionary Revenue funding to support service level growth in General Fund departments. Combined with externally funded service level changes another $29.6 million is recommended to the budget, for a total increase of $113.5 million over the 2024 Proposed Budget. If approved as recommended, the 2024 Adopted Budget of $1.73 billion will support 18 additional full-time staff across four Board priority areas for a total of 4,866 authorized positions.
The 2024 Proposed Budget was approved by the Board of Supervisors on June 20, 2023, providing the initial budget and spending authority for Fiscal Year 2024, effective July 1, 2023.
The 2024 Adopted Budget incorporates a variety of changes to the Proposed Budget in response to State Budget actions, updated revenue estimates, evolving department operational needs, and results from the year-end closing of the County’s financial books while providing Stanislaus County with a balanced, updated operational plan for Fiscal Year 2024. The 2024 Proposed Budget totaled $1,612,124,021 for all funds. In total, the 2024 Adopted Budget increases this amount by $113,462,198 for an updated budget of $1,725,586,219.
Some of the highlights of the 2024 Adopted Budget, by Board priority category, include:
· *Supporting a Strong and Safe Community – Increase $31.8 million: The District Attorney will utilize a new Criminal Investigator to support the increased workload of special victims and domestic violence cases; Probation will utilize a new Confidential Assistant III to maintain and update Department policies, monitor training requirements, and provide office support; the Public Defender will add one new Chief Deputy Public Defender to right-size the supervisorto-staff ratio, and will add three new Indigent Defense positions; and the Sheriff will replace equipment for special weapons and tactics (SWAT) team, bomb team, and identification team along with right-sizing the Department’s overtime budget.
· *Supporting a Healthy Community – Increase $34 million: Aging and Veterans Services will appropriate funding to provide digital literacy support and training for seniors and add two new positions, of which one is a Veterans Service Representative to assist with benefits claims; Behavioral Health and Recovery Services will utilize department revenue to add a Manager IV position to oversee the Access, Crisis, and Medication services and will add a Manager IV to serve as the Chief of Education, Partnership, and Engagement; the Community Services Agency will increase appropriations and estimated revenue by $14.2 million in the Public Economic Assistance budget due to increased CalWORKS and Foster Care assistance program caseloads and increased average assistance costs; and the Health Services Agency will make adjustments to its position allocation in various units to meet the operational needs of the Department.
· *Developing a High-Performing Economy – Increase $4.6 million: The Agricultural Commissioner will replace the light system in the inspector work area and will replace two large exterior roll-up doors located at the agricultural center warehouse and Workforce Development will add a Staff Services Coordinator to create and develop sector strategy meetings for in demand sectors in Stanislaus County.
· *Promoting Lifelong Learning – Increase $1.9 million: The Library will receive its second allotment of Building Community Services Investment funding in the amount of $3.5 million to enhance County libraries in addition to replacing two cargo vans used to transfer books, supplies, furniture, and equipment throughout the Library’s 13 locations.
· *Delivering Efficient Public Services – Increase $19.9 million: The Assessor will supplement current staffing levels through the utilization of Extra Help employees and increased overtime while implementing new software technology for improved business efficiencies; the Auditor-Controller will block-budget 11 positions to allow for greater flexibility in filling positions; the Chief Executive Office – Human Relations division will increase its budget for contract legal services and will receive funding for safety training; CEO staff will administer adjustments for activities in County Operations, including an $834,735 increase to Appropriations for Contingencies to support a potential need for the InHome Supportive Services program at the Community Services Agency; the General Services Agency will receive its second allotment of Building Community Services Investment funding in an amount of $9.5 million for the restoration of County property in addition to three new positions that will assist the Department with the increase in workload and provide administrative support and supervision; Information Technology Central will add one new manager to serve as the Enterprise Cloud Architect; and the Treasurer-Tax Collector will subscribe to new investment market software.
· *Enhancing Community Infrastructure – Increase $21.3 million: Environmental Resources will improve wet-weather access to the Fink Road Landfill by constructing an all-weather tipping pad and haul roads and will purchase new equipment for the landfill; Parks and Recreation will receive its second allotment of Building Community Services Investment funding in the amount of $3.5 million to support park enhancement projects in addition to adjustments identified to improve lobby security and a reclassification of multiple park operations positions; Planning and Community Development includes adjustments related to two online permitting programs that will be of benefit to the public; and Public Works will increase revenue and appropriations by $9 million to fully fund right-of-way purchases associated with the North County Corridor project.
The 2024 Adopted Budget will be presented to the Board of Supervisors for consideration and approvalin a public hearing at 9 a.m. Sept. 26. The 2024 Adopted Budget is now available for public review on the County’s website at www.stancounty.com/budget and a hard copy will be available for viewing in the Clerk of the Board’s Office on the sixth floor of Tenth Street Place in Modesto.