Citywide

City of Santa Monica Invites Community Members to Share Input on Community Priorities by February 28

On March 13, the City Council will establish community priorities for development of the City budget for fiscal years 2021-2023 (July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2023). As Santa Monica recovers from the economic and civic disruption caused by COVID-19, establishing community priorities will:

Prioritize reopening services and programs as funding becomes available

Inform City operations and policymaking.

Ensure the City shares information on what matters most to the community

A survey available in English and Spanish is open to gather input from community members on the priorities. The results of the survey will be reviewed by City Council as they begin budget deliberations with adoption in June 2021.

“We want to hear from our entire community – Santa Monica residents, business owners, and workers – as we develop the City’s budget for fiscal years 2021-2023. We urge everyone to participate in the Community Priorities Survey by February 28 to help shape our shared priorities,” said Interim City Manager Lane Dilg.  “As Santa Monica joins other communities in confronting the most significant economic crisis since the Great Depression, it is more important than ever for every voice to be heard.”

In the Summer of 2020, the City Council took significant actions to safeguard the City’s fiscal health and sustainability in the face of the severe economic impacts of COVID-19 on Santa Monica’s heavily tourism-based economy and in the absence of meaningful federal stimulus support. The City’s fiscal year 2020-2021 budget called for reductions in operating and capital costs of nearly 25% Citywide and restructured City operations in the pandemic to focus on responding to the public health emergency, delivering foundational services, supporting community-wide economic recovery, and advancing racial equity. As a result of these efforts and the setting aside of a $20 million Shutdown Reserve fund in advance to account for the second COVID surge and economic shutdown that the City experienced this Winter, the City’s current budget remains balanced.

As part of the City’s Mid-Year Budget, Council approved allocation of additional resources to respond to immediate needs, including addressing homelessness in our community, increasing code enforcement resources for response to public health and quality of life concerns, creating a 3-1-1 service line to improve resident response and services, supporting non-profit eviction counseling for residents at risk of losing their homes, funding additional Library page services, and securing an outside entity to serve as an Inspector General to support the work of the City’s new Public Safety Reform and Oversight Commission.

For more information and to complete the short survey, visit santamonica.gov/priorities. For assistance taking the survey, contact (310) 458-8400.

Constance Farrell, Public Information Officer