A Q&A: Cuts to libraries and rec centers
I received an email Thursday from Voice of San Diego’s City Hall reporter asking for the councilman’s position on proposed cuts to libraries and rec centers.
I had written a blog post a day earlier on San Diego Rostra that said some local reporters weren’t giving the City Council much of a say in stories about the proposed cuts.
The email from Liam Dillon at the Voice said he was asking each council office the same questions, which resulted in a post published yesterday.
The threat of cuts to libraries and rec centers continues to gall some San Diegans, so I’m going to share each of the questions the reporter asked along with our response:
Do you believe the proposed cuts to branch library hours and recreation center hours will stay in the budget?
- No, he does not.
If no, where should the estimated $11 million to stave them off come from?
- The council will answer that exact question and others over the next several weeks as they work to finalize next year’s budget, which begins July 1. We’re not talking about a tremendous amount of money in a $1.1 billion budget, but the quality of life impact on working families is significant.
- Kevin is exploring a range of ideas, including the installation of solar panels on city street lights, which could generate millions of dollars annually from the sale of clean energy to SDG&E. Kevin also wants the City to expand the use of revenue recovery auditing firms, which should be able to quickly start finding additional money owed to the City.
Also, if no, do you think there will be any cuts to library and rec center hours?
- If it was up to Kevin, there would be no cuts to libraries, rec centers and firepits because there’s a certain quality of life he wants every San Diegan to be able to enjoy.
Will you vote for a budget that includes cuts to libraries or rec center hours?
- Kevin does not support the proposed cuts to library and rec center hours.
The next morning I sent another email to Liam:
I forgot to mention that Kevin is in discussions with local tourism leaders and the San Diego Foundation. The talks are focused on saving the firepits from the budget ax this year and in the future: http://bit.ly/eot6Ig