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Los Angeles County budget revision sees $935 million hole

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A revised Los Angeles County budget released Thursday would make cuts in every department to address a projected $935.3 million gap due mostly to sharp revenue declines and expenditures in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The $34.9 billion budget will be presented to the county Board of Supervisors on Monday.

With about 10 million residents, the county is the nation’s most populous.

“I am very disappointed to report that significant cuts in county programs and personnel will be needed as a result of the serious economic downturn caused by this ongoing public health emergency,” Chief Executive Officer Sachi A. Hamai said in a statement.

The proposal includes $453.5 million in departmental curtailments and $59.3 million in management cost reductions. The budget would also draw on $351.6 million in one-time funding from departmental trust accounts.

A total of 3,251 positions would be eliminated, including 2,596 that are vacant and 655 potential layoffs.

Public safety departments, including the Sheriff’s Department, would be the most heavily affected because they represent the largest share of the portion of the budget funded with sales tax and other locally generated revenue. They also receive state realignment sales tax revenues, which have nosedived.

Hamai expressed hope that additional federal and state funding could mitigate the cuts.

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