monopoly_money.jpgThe San Francisco Board of Supervisors today gave unanimous initial approval to the city’s $6.83 billion budget for the next fiscal year.

The budget was proposed by Mayor Ed Lee in June and approved by the board’s budget committee in the early morning hours of July 1 with more than $17 million in adjustments to funding for various city departments.

Although the budget requires cuts to all city departments, it also includes funding for a police academy class in response to concerns about the need to replace retiring officers, and maintained funding for the sheriff’s department to provide security at San Francisco General Hospital and Laguna Honda Hospital, reversing a proposal by Lee to contract those services out to a private company.

Supervisor Carmen Chu, the budget committee chair, said the final product “reflects our shared values” as a city.

Several supervisors complimented Lee on overseeing a more peaceful budget negotiation process than previous years with former Mayor Gavin Newsom.

Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi said the past negotiations “had a barbaric feel” to them because it led to various city departments competing against each other for funding, while Lee’s process was more inclusive.

Supervisor David Campos said, “It made a big difference to know that every concern that we’ve had would be heard out.”

The board voted 11-0 to give initial approval to the budget, and will return to finalize its approval next week.

Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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