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Mayor Liccardo Releases March Budget Message Focused on Weathering the Storm

Mayor’s budget proposal prioritizes savings in face of expected downturn

Post Date:03/17/2020

For Immediate Release

March 17, 2020

Media Contact

Rachel Davis, Office of Mayor Liccardo,, 408.712.9149

SAN JOSÉ, CA – Today, amid a daunting Coronavirus pandemic, the San José City Council will vote on Mayor Sam Liccardo’s March Budget Message. In approving the Mayor’s spending blueprint, the City Council will endorse a budget proposal that recognizes the fiscal challenge San José will face in the years ahead in the aftermath of COVID-19, and limits new investments on the homelessness crisis. 

“The report of the third COVID-19-infected person in Santa Clara County that came out on Friday, February 28, shifted my assumptions about the trajectory of our economic prospects dramatically,” said Mayor Liccardo. “In evaluating our budgetary decisions, we expect heavy headwinds in several key economic sectors--that will have direct impacts on City revenues.”

As such, the Mayor's March Budget Message for Fiscal Year 2020-2021 proposes a three-tiered framework for any spending: 

  • Fiscal Resilience: The allocations of $51 million will boost the City’s fiscal resilience, including saving, building reserves, paying down debt, and other mechanisms that reduce stress on the General Fund in preparation for the downturn. These projected savings will also help prepare for the recovery ahead.
  • Affordable Housing and Homelessness Solutions Funded by Measure E: With the March 3rd passage of Measure E, Mayor Liccardo will keep the faith of the voters of San José, by focusing the measure’s revenues on homelessness prevention grants and immediate solutions to solve the homeless crisis, including the building of more Bridge Housing/ “tiny homes,” transitional job programs, accelerating affordable housing construction, and building a navigation center.
  • Contingent Expenditures: San José’s budget will certainly face a serious negative fiscal impact following COVID-19 that could exceed $100 million annually. Mayor Liccardo will face this challenge head-on by saving funds to protect critical services such as emergency medical response and police until news substantially improves in the weeks and months ahead. Contingent on substantially improved conditions, investments may be made into identified public safety, quality of life, and neighborhood improvements.

The Mayor’s March Budget Message recommendations guide the development of a proposed budget for the next fiscal year. The City Council will vote on these recommendations at 1:30 p.m. today. 


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