Contact: Tony Bell, Communications Deputy
Office: (213) 974-5555 Cell: (213) 215-5176
April 16, 2013
For Immediate Release
ANTONOVICH ON THE COUNTY BUDGET
LOS ANGELES COUNTY – As the County released its draft 2013-2014 budget of nearly $24.7 billion, Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich said:
“With the county’s budget out of the red, we still face the fiscal iceberg of looming costs associated with the Governor’s realignment policy releasing criminals to local government, Obamacare, pension liability and unfunded mandates.
Realignment has shifted over 14,700 parolees to probation supervision since October of 2011. Nearly 60 percent are very high risk or high risk with 39 percent medium risk and only 1.6 percent low risk. Over 11,643 offenders have now been sentenced to county jail instead of state prison, where more than half are currently serving their time. Some of those are now sentenced to county jail terms of 8,10, 20 and 40 years.
Along with the recommendations by the Jail Violence Commission, the sheriff’s structural budget deficit needs to be addressed to ensure timely response times, and that those convicted serve full jail sentences — not 10 to 15 percent of a sentence, as well as proactive and thorough investigations.
In addition to the impact of Obamacare and pension liability, we also have the unfunded mandates from the state including the storm water cleanup — a state responsibility, not another property tax.
Despite the county’s fiscal uncertainties, it is important we recognize the partnership between our labor partners and the county. Without that partnership, the county would find itself in the same situation as the city of San Bernardino, the city of Stockton, even the city of Los Angeles which are on the verge of bankruptcy or fiscal chaos.
It’s important that the board continue to have prudent and responsible fiscal practices and continue with caution.
We are also pleased to announce the addition of 50 IMD beds (Institution for Mental Disease Beds) to address the mental health needs in the county. Since 2008, 274 patients have successfully transitioned into community-based housing and returned to a productive life.