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San Diego Mayor proposes record $5.6 billion spending plan, fully funds police and fire and adds homeless beds

Gloria wants to spend nearly $500M more, says city needs additional funds as residents grapple with some of highest utility costs in nation.
Mayor reveals $5.65 billion budget, one-time cuts to prevent service losses
Posted at 5:31 PM, Apr 12, 2024

SAN DIEGO — San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria on Friday unveiled a record $5.6 billion spending plan when the new fiscal year starts July 1, but he wants more money for the city. 

Gloria and other city officials during a press conference at the Chollas Operations Yard reiterated that San Diego needs additional cash despite the mayor’s budget being 9% higher than what’s currently being spent. 

The mayor’s spending plan is double the rate of inflation for a city that has some of the highest electricity bills in the country and has been hit with a 20% water bill rate hike under Gloria and the City Council. 

Still, Gloria’s plan calls for spending nearly a half billion more dollars when the new budget year begins July 1. 

The mayor said his budget will add 1,000 more homeless shelter beds, fully fund San Diego’s police and fire departments and pave more roads.

“As your mayor, I’m committed to protecting that progress and that is what this budget is all about,” Gloria said.

Executive summary of Gloria's proposed budget 4-12-24
Mayor Todd Gloria's fiscal year 2025 budget of $5.6 billion is 9% more than current spending. That's double the rate of inflation.

Mayor: City still has a shortfall 

Gloria also contends the city has a nearly $137 million shortfall – the amount he’d like to spend.

“There is no reasonable way to accommodate all the capital needs we have as a city without finding new ways to pay for it,” Gloria said. “Others in the past may have told you different, I'm here to tell you the truth. We need additional resources in order to fix our roads, repair our piers and fix the ball field lights.”

Thus, the mayor also is supporting a 1% sales tax increase that would generate about $374 million.

Team 10 looked at what Gloria’s budget increase will cost San Diego’s roughly 1.38 million residents.
It’s at least $338 more for every resident come July 1.

What would that buy?

Well, it would cover four nice lower-level seats for a Padres game, a cup of coffee for at least two to three months or a day at Sea World for a family of four.

Spending has increased 40%

If the Democrat-controlled City Council passes the mayor’s budget, taxpayer spending will have increased 40% since Gloria took office in December 2020, budget records show. Gloria also has raised the number of city employees by 1,572 to 13,299 workers during his first term.

He’s up for re-election in November.

The increase in staff comes as the total workforce for greater San Diego has remained virtually unchanged prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, records show.