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City Manager Calls For More Rolling Brownouts, Layoffs

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Right now, the Sacramento Fire Department “browns out” or closes one of its 23 fire houses on a rotating basis. That number will increase under City Manager Gus Vina’s new budget proposal.
“We’re recommending that we add an additional three rolling brownouts in the city for a total of four.”
The possibility of extra brownouts illustrates how dire the budget situation is for the city…which has seen revenues decline by $150 million over the past three years.
“The duration and how deep this has gone was not anticipated by anybody.”
City Fire Chief Ray Jones says the proposed brownouts would be spread out.  
“You’re going to see brownouts in the far north, in the far south, the far east and the far west.”
He estimates the additional brownouts would mean response times would increase by two-minutes.
Vina’s proposed budget also includes laying off 100 city employees, consolidating some city departments and closing 10 out of 13 city swimming pools next summer.
The city council will consider the proposed cuts on June 10th.  
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