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Voters overwhelmingly passed Measure U in November of 2012 as a temporary ½-cent sales tax proposed to restore and protect City services. The intent was to restore police and fire services, park maintenance and other essential services that were cut between 2008 and 2013. The City estimates about $30 million in revenue per year will result from Measure U’s passage.
The sales tax took effect April 1, 2013 and will expire on March 31, 2019.
The following principles were adopted by the City Council to guide the allocation of Measure U resources:
“Resources will be allocated to the protection and restoration of City programs/services specifically enumerated in the Measure U ballot question as follows:
- essential public safety services including, 9-1-1 response, police officers, gang/youth violence prevention, fire protection/emergency medical response
- other essential services including park maintenance, youth/senior services and libraries”
Parks and Recreation – $4.9 million per year
- There are now 91 park employees in the field maintaining over 200 parks. Prior to Measure U, there were 65 park employees.
- While not restored to pre-Recession levels, the frequency of restroom cleaning, trash pickup, weeding, edging and blowing in parks has increased, and response time for irrigation repairs has improved.
- An additional Park Safety Ranger position was provided by Measure U to address security concerns in the parks.
- Hours of operation at City Community Centers, including the Hart Senior Center, have been restored, providing safe places for youth, seniors and families.
- Kids camps, introduction to team sports, help with homework and reading skills, gang prevention, job preparedness, community service, and safe and supervised evening activities for teens are offered with Measure U funding across Sacramento. Many of these programs are at or near capacity.
- Eleven City swimming pools and five stand-alone wading pools are open in summer and include swim lessons, swim team, junior guard and lifeguard training academies. Low income families can apply for scholarships for these services.
- One-time Measure U dollars are being spent on water infrastructure renovation projects. The projects focused on bringing infrastructure up to code to ensure high quality drinking water. Plans are underway to improve the drinking water at several parks by the end of 2015.
Police – $12.6 million
- From a low of 653 sworn officers in fiscal year 2012-13, the department now has 708.
- We were able to retain 60 Police Officers whose positions where previously funded by federal grants, which are expiring.
- We were able to accept a Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing, grant for 10 sworn police officers as Measure U provide the resources for the required City matching funds for the three year period and the fourth year retention funding of the police officers.
- Twenty-four Police Officer positions have been filled with full-time career officers in Field & Operations. These positions will allow for increased crime prevention, intervention, proactive deployment and ability to respond to crimes in progress. Specialty unit positions will allow for increased ability to respond to gang activity, resolve traffic complaints, address citizen concerns, and conduct parolee intervention, follow-up on highly sensitive investigations and train officers.
- Three detectives were added in Investigations to increase ability to follow-up on violent felony crimes and investigation of felony crimes.
- We filled four Forensic Investigator positions to allow for additional sworn officers to be shifted back to the streets and increase capacity to conduct fingerprint examination and identification.
- Four Dispatchers were hired to allow for the continued expansion of the pilot project to receive acceptance of cellular 911 calls, reduced call wait times, a more rapid police response, and a higher level of customer service.
- We added a Crime Analyst to further integrate patrol functions with investigative elements to improve public safety.
Fire – $11.7 million per year
- All company brownouts have been eliminated. This means 12 positions per Fire Company have been added back, for a total of 48 positions. Additionally, Fire was able to maintain 27 grant-funded positions with Measure U. The positions would have been eliminated in December of 2013 without it.
- Restored a Senior Fire Prevention Officer to provide more oversight and more business inspections with an associated higher level of revenue.
- Restored Fire Internal Investigations to give the community a place to lodge complaints; provide a thorough and impartial misconduct investigations; prevent future complaints through identification of misconduct trends; and recommend training or policy changes.
Animal Care – $227,000
- Two Animal Control Officer positions were added to the Animal enforcement and field services program to respond to service calls; administer the rabies program; pick up stray, injured and abandoned animals; and to investigate cases of animal cruelty or neglect and nuisance complaints.
Sacramento Public Library $506,000
- Measure U funds will restore some library services
Total Measure U restorations for FY2014/15 $29.9 million. For a complete budget of Measure U budgeted expenditures, please visit page 15 in the budget overview of the FY2014/15 approved budget.