Broken Promise? Antioch Staff Suggest Keeping Police Levels at 100 Through 2016

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The City of Antioch will host a study session Tuesday evening to start a preliminary review of the General Fund. Buried in the document is a proposal by staff to keep police staffing levels below the promised 122 from Measure C funding.

Currently, the police department is at 102 authorized positions; however, they only have hired 87 sworn positions. The proposal would keep the number of officers at 97 through 2014-2015 with an increase to 100 in 2015/2016—this is well short of the 122 officers that were promised under Measure C.

This is partly due to the City balancing the budget on the back of the police department—the proposal by staff aims to ensure this continues by carrying forward expenditures  to the General Fund and then to Measure C. Oddly, staff is suggesting keep staffing levels of police at around 100 while then in the next line stating it’s up to the police chief to determine an effective mix of police staffing.

Here is a look at the staff’s proposal:

Rather than spending all 2014-2015 Measure C funds in fiscal year 2014-2015, we are proposing to reduce staffing to 97 sworn in 2014-2015 and carry-forward a larger amount of unused Measure C funds to the next fiscal year to add to the fiscal year 2015-2016 spending allocation to increase staffing to 100 sworn, thereby balancing the next two fiscal years of budget allotment (shown in Chart B). This method of carrying forward the allocation ensures that expenditures are first applied to General Fund general revenues and then to Measure C. It will then be at the discretion of the Chief of Police to determine the staffing model that will best utilize allocated funds for maximum impact to safety in the City. The Chief is in the best position to determine the most effective mix of sworn officers, CSO’s and other Police Department staff.

At nearly 70% approval for Measure C, voters were promised more police officers and more enforcement. All one has to do is look back to a presentation in January where Chief Allan Cantando gave a presentation on what they would be able to reinstate with 122 sworn officers.

  • Proactive enforcement from undercover/plain clothed narcotics related enforcement
  • Warrant services
  • Traffic enforcement would return
  • Police presence at chronic complaint locations
  • Probation Parole Searches
  • Hot spot policing
  • Shadowing repeat offenders
  • Periods of intense police patrol
  • Assertive Field Interrogations
  • A focus on “maintenance policing of less serious offenses such as panhandling, loitering, truancy, curfew, public intoxication, etc.

Under the current staffing levels, enforcement to the list shown above is next to nothing which is what staff is suggesting continue until fiscal year 2016/2017. The City Council made promises that the City Staff seems to have forgotten about.

Another side note is this discussing is occurring before the Sales Tax Citizens Oversight Committee is put in place which is set to meet in April meaning they would have little to oversee.

Staff Report is shown below with appropriate charts.

June 30, 2014

Current fiscal year projections indicate a fund balance of $7.86M, which is higher than projected with the adoption of the fiscal year 2013-2014 budget. This equates to an unassigned fund balance of 19.66% which exceeds the fund balance policy target of 15%.

While this may sound like good news, it is important to note that revenues are projected to be just shy of $37M, which is still $10.3M short of pre-recession levels. Although the City has been successful in building up the fund balance since the recession began through severe cuts and employee concessions, fiscal year 2013-2014 is seeing the end of one-time revenues that have been band aids for the City’s economic crisis. While departments have revised their budgets for this year to account for as much anticipated expenditure savings (including vacancies) as possible, we are projecting deficit spending of $2.24M for 2013-2014. A discussion of each of the next two fiscal years follows

June 30, 2015

Projected revenues in fiscal year 2014-2015 have increased $5,956,588 over fiscal year 2013-2014. The major factor contributing to this increase is Measure C, the half cent sales tax approved to take effect April 1, 2014. We have conservatively budgeted $4,489,747 for the fiscal year until actual figures can be seen. Measure C revenue is segregated on the General Fund table that follows later in the report (Chart C) and is being allocated to Police Department and Code Enforcement expenditures as directed by the City Council. This is also segregated out on the table as well. Other assumptions included in fiscal year 2014-2015 are:

  • 5% increase in property tax revenue with an additional $450,000 estimated from the northeast annexation representing a half year of property tax revenue from the annexation, with a full year represented in fiscal year 2015-2016.
  • 1.8% increase in sales tax revenue.
  • APOA and APSMA are entitled to a salary increase between a minimum of 2% and a maximum of 4.25% based on the existing four-city formula September 1, 2014. The budget assumes a 3% increase.
  • PERS employer contribution rate of 26.25% for miscellaneous and 34.255% for safety, representing a 2.563% increase in the miscellaneous rate and 2.575% increase for safety.
  • Increased cafeteria benefit cost of 8% for APOA and APSMA bargaining groups, with 4% for all others.
  • Increased workers compensation premiums of 20%.
  • Continue to fund medical after retirement and police supplementary retirement plans on pay as you go basis.
  • Continue to fund street light electricity costs out of Gas Tax.
  • Existing elected official voluntary reductions continue.
  • Furloughs still in place ($662,765 cost to General Fund to reinstate and $1.47M citywide).
  • Continue to fund vehicle replacement account with non-General Fund sources only.
  • Earthquake insurance for Prewett, City Hall and Police Facility (estimate cost of insurance to be approximately $125,000). Staff recommends reinstating earthquake coverage on these facilities and is requesting Council concurrence.
  • Library facility maintenance funding of $135,000. For the past several years, this funding has been paid out of the Residential Development Allocation Fund. In fiscal year 2013-2014, that funding source was depleted and the full cost will have to be paid out of the General Fund. Staff recommends Council consider whether or not to continue funding this maintenance.
  • Payment of $300,000 to the Office Equipment Replacement and Vehicle
  • Replacement Funds towards the $1.5M borrowed in fiscal year 2009-2010 to help balance the budget. This was discussed with Council earlier in the year to be repaid over five years, with fiscal year 2013-2014 being the first year.

Code Enforcement:

  • Increase the time allocation of Deputy Director of Community Development from 40% to 60% for Code Enforcement, funding the additional 20% with Measure C. Shift responsibility for Recreation to other staff.
  • Hiring of one more contract code enforcement position to be funded by Measure C.

Police:

  • Allocate remainder of Measure C to Police Department. Sworn officer funding of 97 for fiscal year 2014-2015 (this may be adjusted at the discretion of the Chief of Police to other non-sworn positions such as CSO’s).
  • Funding of Police Communications Supervisor (not funded in fiscal year 2013-2014).
  • Funding of Senior Administrative Assistant in the Police Department (not funded in fiscal year 2013-2014).

Other (non Measure C) staffing adjustments:

  • The Human Resources Technician was split 50/50 between the Police and Human Resources. We are proposing to put 100% of the position back into Human Resources. Human Resources has identified $42,000 in cost savings to help offset the cost.
  • Funding of an Associate Planner in Community Development to assist with the increased workload. This is almost cost neutral due to contracts ending for the Northeast Annexation and that being re-directed to funding for this position.
  • Remove funding of Chief Building Official and continue to pay existing employee special assignment pay when performing some of these duties.
  • Reclassification of the following positions to better reflect job duties (which also result in minor increases to personnel costs):
    • Human Resources Director to Administrative Services Director.
    • Administrative Analyst in Economic Development to Economic Development Program Manager.
    • Secretary in the Planning Department to Community Development Technician, Assistant Level
    • Changes to Recreation staffing as discussed on page 8.

Measure C

Measure C was passed by the voters in November 2013 for “Restoring Antioch Services”. City Council has directed that the funds will be used to enhance Police and Code Enforcement activities, with the goal of putting more police and code enforcement officers on the street. Although 102 sworn positions have been authorized, the General Fund has not been able to support that level of staffing due to the financial hardships the City has been facing since 2009. Sworn staffing has hovered in the 80 FTE range in the last several years. Significant vacancy savings in the police department realized each year since 2009 have helped the City close the budget gap. In fact, vacancies for 19 sworn positions were accounted for in the fiscal year 2013 2014 budget.

In the fiscal year 2014-2015 budget, we are using the revised fiscal year 2013-2014 budget for the Police Department as the starting point for fiscal year 2014-2015 and adding projected Measure C revenue for the total budget allotment for police services in total (including the Animal Services subsidy). This is shown in Chart A.

 Chart A Antioch Fiscal Budger 2014

In fiscal year 2014-2015 projected expenditures in Chart A, based upon staffing for 100 sworn, are under the total allocated spending threshold for the Police Department. However, based upon Chart A, the projected Police Department budget increases for fiscal year 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 exceed the projected Measure C revenues for those years. In fiscal year 2016-2017, Police Department costs are projected to significantly exceed General Fund base plus Measure C projected revenues.

Rather than spending all 2014-2015 Measure C funds in fiscal year 2014-2015, we are proposing to reduce staffing to 97 sworn in 2014-2015 and carry-forward a larger amount of unused Measure C funds to the next fiscal year to add to the fiscal year 2015-2016 spending allocation to increase staffing to 100 sworn, thereby balancing the next two fiscal years of budget allotment (shown in Chart B). This method of carrying forward the allocation ensures that expenditures are first applied to General Fund general revenues and then to Measure C. It will then be at the discretion of the Chief of Police to determine the staffing model that will best utilize allocated funds for maximum impact to safety in the City. The Chief is in the best position to determine the most effective mix of sworn officers, CSO’s and other Police Department staff.

Chart b Antioch Fiscal Budger 2014

The City Council will need to decide, based on the overall General Fund budget, if they will dip into declining reserves or slow down the growth of the Police Department budget so that the additional Measure C funds, on top of the 2013-2014 base General Fund allocation, is sustainable beyond the next two years. The City Manager and Finance Director strongly recommend, at minimum, balancing the two year Police Department budget projection (as presented in Chart B) by effecting Measure C savings in fiscal year 2014-2015 and carrying these savings forward so that fiscal year 2015-16 is balanced. Otherwise, the City will continue with a structural deficit and General Fund reserves will dip dangerously low, necessitating lay-offs at that point.

The fiscal year 2014-2015 budget allocates $163,900 of Measure C funding to Code Enforcement. This represents funding of one more contract code enforcement officer with necessary equipment (for a total of 3) and 20% more staffing allocation of the Deputy Community Development Director to the program.

June 30, 2016

Revenues are projected to increase 2.7% over fiscal year 2014-2015. While we are projecting a 5% increase in property tax, most other revenue sources continue to remain fairly flat. Expenditures are projected to increase approximately $2.25M above fiscal year 2014-2015 to $45,052,049. This is mainly due projected salary increases in the Police Department, rising PERS and health care costs, rising insurance and other contractual costs.

Assumptions included in fiscal year 2015-2016 are:

  • Overall 5.4% increase in personnel costs.
  • PERS employer contribution rate of 28.3% for miscellaneous and 36.7% for safety, representing a 2.05% increase in the miscellaneous rate and 2.445% increase for safety.
  • Work furloughs still maintained.
  • Existing elected official voluntary reductions still in place.
  • Continue to fund medical after retirement and police supplementary retirement plan benefits on a pay as you go basis.
  • Maintain funded staffing levels from fiscal year 2014-2015.
  • Continue to fund vehicle replacement account with non-General Fund sources only.
  • Earthquake insurance for Prewett, City Hall and Police Facility at an estimated cost of $137,500.
  • Library maintenance funding of $140,000.
  • Payment of $300,000 to the Office Equipment Replacement and Vehicle
  • Replacement Funds towards the $1.5M borrowed in fiscal year 2009-2010 to help balance the budget.

Projections

The revised fiscal year 2013-2014, proposed budget for fiscal year 2014-2015 and current projections for the following two fiscal years are presented in Chart C below.

Chart C Antioch Fiscal Budger 2014

As you can see, we are projecting to balance the budget next year and then deficit spend in fiscal years 2015-2016 and 2016-2017. This is due to several factors: small projected increases in the major sources of revenues; previously negotiated salary increases; increases in insurance premiums; projected increases in PERS rates. Expenditures are only going to continue to rise and significantly for PERS contributions in future years beginning in fiscal year 2016-2017. New assumptions were adopted by CalPERS in 2014 to take effect in fiscal year 2016-2017 and will have a significant impact to all agencies throughout California beginning in that fiscal year. We are estimating a 4.6% rate increase in safety (for a total rate of 41.3%) and 3.5% increase in miscellaneous (for a total rate of 31.8%) employer contributions over fiscal year 2015-2016.

The projections for fiscal years 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 are working baseline estimates for planning purposes and continued vacancy and other savings may significantly lessen the deficits. The City needs to use these projections to chart our course going forward to determine funding priorities as we continue with the strategic planning process that has begun. We need to look for long term stability.

OTHER FUNDS
The Recreation Fund, Prewett Water Park Fund and Animal Services Fund all receive operating subsidies from the General Fund thus it is important to review them in conjunction with the General Fund. The budget summaries are presented next.

Recreation & Prewett Water Park Funds

recreation fund 219

Prewett Water Park Fund 641

The Recreation and Prewett Water Park Funds have a combined subsidy from the General Fund of $830,002 in fiscal year 2014-2015. This is $30,612 higher than the current fiscal year with only a moderate increase projected in fiscal year 2015-2016.

The increase is due primarily to staffing changes being proposed for the Recreation Department. Currently, oversight falls under Community Development with direct supervision provided by the Deputy Community Development Director. Staff feels that this department would be better served by having a full time Parks & Recreation Director that can concentrate on running programs more efficiently and cost effectively. The budget tables presented above reflect staffing changes as follows:

  • Parks & Recreation Director funded 50% from each fund. This classification does not currently exist and will have to be brought back to Council with a job specification and salary range.
  • Removing oversight by the Deputy Community Development Director which is currently charged a total of .20 between the two funds.
  • Removal of 1 recreation supervisor and 1 recreation specialist position currently funded and vacant.
  • Addition of funding for 1 Aquatics Maintenance Worker, replacing a position currently funded with part time help.
  • Addition of funding for 1 Recreation Coordinator, replacing a position currently funded with part time help.

Animal Control Fund

Animal Control Fund

The subsidy from the General Fund is moderately projected to increase over the current fiscal year mainly due to projected salary increases. Staffing is proposed at the same level. However, the current staffing authorizes 3.75 FTE’s for Animal Care Attendants which are filled by several part time temporary employees and one permanent part-time employee. These positions are being changed to strictly part-time temporary employees, as the permanent part-time designation is an anomaly and inappropriate for the staffing model.

NEXT STEPS
Staff will be bringing forth budgets for remaining funds of the City for Council deliberation, including the five year capital improvement program. The final budget document incorporating all budgets that have been presented will be brought for Council approval on June 10, 2014.

OPTIONS
1. Provide direction to staff regarding the budget information provided.


27 COMMENTS

  1. Mo money, mo money, mo money! That’s the chanted mantra down at city hall.

    And all you voters for Measure C are surprised this is happening?

  2. Whoever on the Council goes along with this plan needs to be replaced. They made a promise and should keep it. I am not surprised by this one bit.

  3. The City Council must not turn its back on the intent of 70% passage of Measure “C”(more police). Crime is the major issue of economic development and citizen safety in our city. The staff proposal insults our trust.

  4. The intent of Measure “C” approved by a trusting 70% of Antioch voters was the hiring of more police officers. Crime in our city is the #1 deterrent to economic growth and citizen safety.
    Our City Council must maintain the trust of the citizens of our great city.

  5. antiochs people got lied too, again i may say, i wonder why some poster are surprised. and the campaign was financed/ run by out a out of town consultant and property management companies.

  6. Does this really surprise you? Not I. People don’t change there spots. This has been going on for a long time. No words. Faith in human spirit and integrity is again shattered. Shame on you. And you do know who you are.

    • Mr. Harper does it again and again. All you folks deserve what you get and I hope it hurts. There are three members on this council you cannot trust. Their names start with M…,W…,T… If it entailed a vote it would be 3-2

      • I completely agree with you Julio!

        M , W, and T really need to go. The other M too. Like I said, Harper is great with the smoke and mirrors.

        “Let’ just give them a little taste by hiring a few officers, then when the money starts coming in, a complicated plan to use it for other general fund things should be in the works”

        Shows exactly why they really wanted to get this passed the way it did. They legally CAN do whatever they want with the money because it is general fund money.

  7. Quoting from the song lyrics, “Oh, promises, promises; This is where those promises, promises end…” PAY MORE, GET LESS is the way of doing business or running government these days. Maybe it’s time to reinstate the motto, “The buck stops here”. If the council members don’t deliver on their promises, they’re out.

  8. Let’s not indite yet. I have felt that the council is honest and forthright. This is only a staff recommendation. I believe in government transparency.

  9. No one was lied to. This is exactly to the word of the language of Measure C. In all my blog posts regarding and urging a NO vote on Measure C, this is exactly what is happening — I am not saying I am an authority on this matter, but very few wanted to read or believe what I wrote about what will happen with Measure C. The money is going to the general fund for the city to use as it sees fit, there was NOTHING in the language of the initiative that stating how the money was to divided up between the various departments.

    Had they put a specific use tax on the ballot which would have required a 2/3 majority, none of you including BURKHOLDER would be complaining about “broken promises” … By the way, had the measure been specific about police funding only it would have passed overwhelmingly.

    Those of you who thought 22 police officers were and are going to be hired … Well you got duped into voting yes for Measure C.

    By the way, 3 police officers have resigned, one veteran who lateraled to another agency, and 2 of the 4 brand new Academy graduates, and the money from Measure C is not even available yet.

    Everyone who voted yes on Measure C with its language at the time, well there is a sucker born every minute ……………………………

  10. Rumor has it that the Antioch Police Officers Association is having a meeting this week and one of their topics of discussion is that there is speculation the new city manager wants to use some of the Measure C funds to pay for general fund stuff….if the APOA thinks there is speculation about it, what do they already know…??? ..Looks like potential shenanigans in the works again.

  11. @Dave, Word has it the new City Manager has cut the training budget at the Antioch Police Department, go figure …. He must think this place is Hercules where NOTHING happens …..

  12. This is just bad news for us people. Ther already is to much crime here. This was suppose to get more cops out on the streets. We needs to vote them people out cuz they liars.

  13. Right on Vince. Both your comments are accurate. The city manager only plans on being here 2 years and he is out and retired. So he doesn’t care if nothing happens or we are railroaded again.

  14. I LOVE IT!!!!!!! CHOKE ON IT YOU ANTIOCH LIBERALS. CHOKE ON IT!!!! I’m glad I don’t live in Antioch. Remember this when the fire district is trying to get their parcel tax passed.

    CHOKE ON IT!!!! I LOVE IT!!!!!!!

  15. lets point the finger in the right direction. city council.
    duran got hired to fix up the city. looking at the budget proposal, and he is just doing that.
    our city is broken NOT just in one department (police) it’s broken everywhere. measure c will go away in 7 years, so lets spend it where it is needed. where it is need, with an open mind, looking again at all departments, and lets look into the future.
    there was never a search for solution, just raise the sales tax. the org problem that 3/4 of our city budget goes to one single department of about 100 people was never questioned. and how dare anybody to question the police department.
    keep in mind this is NOT a performance or job evaluation question, this is survival of our city.
    now is the time to hire a full department of code enforcement and cso staff. when they are in place, put them into their positions, and bring all the inside fully trained officers back on the street. i also would like to see a workload study done.
    kick out the political parties which rent the newly built police sup station at the new community center on lone tree. that alone will cut done the responds time by 50%
    its also time to start collecting where the city can collect legally. rental inspection program.
    finally after god knows how many decades, the impact fee was raised, off course NOT to standards use in surrounding city. antioch is below by 40%

    also lets start seriously to talk about about a rental business license fee. which can bring a steady flow of about 2,6 million dollar to the bank.
    why are property owners/ property management comp. etc exempt from paying a biz license fee? this biz license fee will not go away in 7 years. keep in mind about 1/3 of antioch housing is rental property. lets be fair and square. everybody who wants to do biz in antioch has to be licensed.
    lets invest in some data base software so we know whats really going on in antioch.

  16. All of you who voted for a general fund just screwed us who were smart enough to vote against Measure C. Politicians cannot be honest. They have to grease palms to get jobs done and talk out of 2 sides of their mouths. Only vote for guarunteed funds. Everyone of you who believe in these so called nice politicians better wake up. There is no such fairly tail, this ain’t Disneyland it’s called real life. Get you heads out of the clouds. So the next time you all vote, don’t vote on BS. Know your facts before you vote and if you don’t know your facts please don’t vote!

  17. Karl, you are right about the business license for rental owners. That should be voted on by council and then you know who cares about Antioch and who has a different agenda.

    • I voted NO on measure C but so many people thought it was great ,we would get more police officers,well folks look what all your YES votes is getting you.NOTHING..

    • council was with the issue, but voted it down in the end. this time around, council has no say anymore, the people of antioch will decide.

  18. I would like the council and staff of Antioch to understand the following points:

    1) This ordinance was passed with the understanding that the city would make police staffing a priority. It appears the new city manager and the council is seeing this new revenue as additional general fund revenue when it is not- it was expected to be additional police staffing revenue on top of the current police staffing budget. People were puzzled why it was allocated to the general fund for the election and were skeptical that the additional money would not be used for the purposes they expected. People reluctantly accepted the 2/3rds reasoning. By doing what you are recommending you further the idea that politicians and government should not be trusted.

    2) The decision makers in this situation should think very carefully about pulling this BS because it will reflect on them personally and on government in general. The folks of Antioch are a middle class hard working community that should be able to expect transparency and integrity from their representatives and the staff of their city. Further any other tax measures that come up in the near future will be tainted by this slimy approach. In other words why would I vote for ANY new tax measures if I can’t be sure the money is going to be used for what I voted it to be used for?

    This reminds me of the Lottery that was approved by voters back in the 80s. Schools were really good in California still back then. The new fund was supposed to provide additional money to the schools. What happened though was that lawmakers eventually took the lottery money as education funds but then used the other money that they had originally allocated to education and put it elsewhere. Now look at our schools- we aren’t nearly getting the educational services we used to get.

    3)Technically you CAN do what staff is recommending as they will be using the C money for police BUT they will be reducing all the other money they originally had put towards police staffing. Still I refer you to #2- in the long term this could be very damaging.

    4) Those of us that don’t live in Antioch should threaten to not shop in Antioch. I was pleased that measure C was passed because I want the crime situation improved as it does impact the surrounding cities.

    5) You should stay committed to the spirit and support of the community whey they voted overwhelmingly in support of Measure C. If you stay committed and get more officers out on the street crime will go down, home values will go up (more tax revenue), people will start shopping, eating and using more services in Antioch (even more tax revenue) & in the end Antioch will flourish. Five years ago folks from DB, Brentwood, Oakley, Rio Vista and other surrounding areas would head out to Antioch to go to the movies and eat dinner, as crime increased people stopped coming. Now people are willing to spend more on movie tickets and drive a little further to go out to Brentwood to avoid the risk of being a victim, getting caught in the crossfire or witnessing crime in Antioch.

    Clean up your crime mess! Stay committed to what your voters told you they wanted.

  19. Antioch needs to be cleaned up NOW not in 2 years. Measure C was sold as police services. The community overwhelmingly supported the measure now the City needs to overwhelmingly follow thru on what we were promised. 122 officer will make a huge difference in cutting down on the crime that is rampant in a city that I have lived in since 1970. My kids and grandkids went to school here. I owned a business here. If you expect to successfully get more businesses to invest money in Antioch, you better get the crime under control.
    The public and business owners deserve the 122 officers that we are paying for!!

    • i suggest that you review tonight’s council meeting. harper clearly stated that the 22 officers he promised as campaign leader and mayor, are NOT, and i repeat are NOT, on top of the 102 authorized pd officers. if at all, the city will see not more then 100. it also was clearly stated that there is no money coming in right now, and also, that it will take a LONG time before the hiring is complete.

      the presented proposed budget should have been without measure c monies.

      here is mayor harpers statement right from measure c facebook page:

      “”Measure C approves a temporary emergency ½ cent sales tax to pay for 22 additional police officers to lower crime in Antioch and to double code enforcement efforts to inspect and clean-up blighted properties in Antioch neighborhoods.””

      just read the header

      https://www.facebook.com/YesonMeasureC

  20. Instead of using the money for more cops, maybe city counsel will side with the cat lovers since the cat lovers have demonstrated such passionate illogical reasoning. The measure C funds we are paying can help build cat houses throughout the city. Heck, we already give away homes for free to the homeless under section 8. Why not build cat communities with 5 bedroom cat houses all paid for through government assistance (measure C funds).

    Only in Antioch can such a magical thing happen.

Comments are closed.