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County Budget Recap: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Updated: Jan 21, 2022

You may have heard, the County of Sacramento approved a $6.4 billion budget. Here’s a recap The Good, The Bad, & the Ugly for you...

The Main Characters

Board of Supervisors County Executive Nav Gill

Sheriff Scott Jones

County CFO Britt Ferguson

The Good

  • Supervisor Kennedy made a brave ask to “sequester” $1.5 million of the Sheriff’s budget and move it to non-law enforcement response for mental health crisis. Serna seemed to be on board with the proposal, but it ultimately was left in the hands of Nav Gill who plans to work with the Sheriff to determine how (or if) this will be funded. This will come back to the BOS in November.

  • Supervisor Nottoli explicitly supporting a comprehensive jail population reduction plan, suggesting a special “convening” to discuss everything happening in Corrections.

  • Supervisor Nottoli suggested removing funding for two jail staff positions if needed in order to fund outpatient behavioral health clinics that would serve approximately 1,100 clients to enhance reentry services, reduce involvement in the criminal legal system, and relieve pressure on the jail system. (Nav had proposed rejecting $3.2 million for this)

  • Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones admitting he wants to “Get out of the homeless business,” (see video here)

The Bad:

  • Sheriff’s presentation: elementary level powerpoint, fear-monngering with Brietbart headlines, and in the words of Kandi Burruss from RHOA “The Lies, The Lies, The.Lies”

  • Britt saying, “times are tough, we can only afford to fund jails right now.”

  • Supervisor Nottoli not supporting Supervisor Kennedy’s courageous ask to divert funding from the Sheriff’s Department. He suggested they let Nav Gill figure out where the money will come from (along with the Sheriff and the Director of Behavioral Health Ryan Quist).

  • Head of Department of Health Services, Dr. Peter Beilenson, the head of Child, Family, and Adult Services, Michelle Allejas, and the head of Human Assistance, Ann Edwards, have been bullied so much by Nav Gill that they were afraid to ask the BOS for more money, while their departments are understaffed and under-resourced.

  • Sneaking in $66 million for jail expansion in agenda item #2: a 5 year capital improvement plan they hid under “county buildings,” but spends the money on renovating the main jail and Rio Consumnes Correctional Center. The $16 million is for a new jail tower next to the mail jail.

The Ugly:

White Women calling in to protect theirs... See this submission from SJPC reader Briana Mullen.

The So What?:

  • Yall, we playing the long game. Remember when Black Lives Matter was a taboo phrase? Now you got companies jumping over themselves to say “Black Lives Matter.”

  • “A river cuts through a rock because of its persistence” - someone, somewhere

  • We have shifted this conversation of investing in community and divesting from the punitive actions of law enforcement.

  • We will keep pressing on by doing direct actions, consistently meeting with elected officials, and working to remove folks from office who are not about that social justice life.

  • #JoinUs #Can’tStopWon’tStop

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