The Coast News Group

Encinitas adopts budget

ENCINITAS — Encinitas’ 2017 budget will include funding for the Leucadia streetscape, an at-grade railroad crossing at Montgomery Avenue and a neighborhood park in Leucadia, but will eat into the city’s reserves to accomplish the tasks, city officials said.

The City Council voted on June 22 to adopt the $79.1 million operations budget and an additional $26 million for capital projects.

The city estimates it will bring in $91.8 million in revenue, meaning it will use about $13.3 million to cover the shortfall.

With about $62 million in reserves, however, the city will still have just under $49 million if the projections hold, officials said, which are above the council’s minimum reserve levels.

The adopted operating budget will continue to maintain the current level of services provided to residents and visitors to the City of Encinitas without increases in fees or to the number of full time equivalent employees of the City,” the city said in a news release.

Among the capital projects that the budget will pay for are the first phase of the long-awaited North Coast Highway 101 streetscape, the at-grade crossing at Montgomery Avenue, a proposal for a park at the intersection of Olympus and Piraeus streets, and safe school route improvements in all of the local school districts.

Some of the other expense increases in the budget would cover current labor contracts and benefit obligations as well as the San Diego Regional Opening Doors pilot project aimed at ending veteran homelessness in Encinitas and for additional overtime for Sheriff’s deputies.