monopoly_money.jpgSan Francisco Mayor Ed Lee today signed the city’s budget for the next fiscal year after the Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to give it final approval earlier this afternoon.

The $6.83 billion budget proposed by Lee in June was approved by the board after it made more than $20 million in adjustments to funding for various city departments.

Although the budget requires significant cuts to 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.

Lee was joined by the entire Board of Supervisors and other city officials in the mayor’s office as he signed the budget.

Lee said collaboration in crafting the plan–including several town hall meetings and dozens of meetings with labor and community groups–was key to a more peaceful budgetary process than past years, even though he inherited a $380 million deficit when he took office in January.

“We wanted to approach this budget in a very different way,” he said.

He said he appreciated the board’s close relationship with him and said, “We’re going to have to keep that relationship tight.”

Board President David Chiu agreed, saying “the spirit of cooperation … is what we clearly need at this time.”

Just before signing the budget, Lee said he was signing it while wearing his favorite tie, an orange one that he also wore when he accompanied the San Francisco Giants to the White House to be honored by President Obama for their World Series win.

“When you’re happy, when you have unity in the city, you wear your best tie,” he said.

Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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