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San Diego County unveils $7 billion budget proposal



The County of San Diego released a $7 billion budget Thursday that increases funding for public safety and health and human services for the next fiscal year starting July 1.

The plan increases spending by $480 million, or 7.3 percent, over the current year, with behavioral health, sheriff and public assistance programs accounting for the biggest expenses.

The county Health and Human Services agency makes up the biggest source of spending at over $2.7 billion, or 39 percent of the county’s total. That spending would increase by 8.3 percent over the current year.

Second is public safety, at nearly $2.2 billion, or 31.2 percent of expenses; it would have a 7.2 percent increase over this year.

Board of Supervisors Chairman Nathan said in a statement that the largest allocation goes to behavioral health, with new positions added for child welfare services.

Fletcher also said the increased public safety funding will help cover 141 positions for mental health and substance abuse care in jails.

And the county’s capital project spending will include $75 million for the second phase of the Youth Transition Campus, which will replace the current juvenile detention center, built in 1954.

“I have fought since 2019 for our budgets to reflect the needs of our community and year-after-year we have successfully increased funding and services to ensure our residents, especially our most vulnerable, are being taken care of better than the year prior,” Fletcher said. “The draft budget appears to continue that trend in some areas.” READ MORE