El Cerrito Staff continue to show lack of transparency with the budget

Tomorrow September 1st at 430pm El Cerrito City Council is having a special budget meeting. They have not yet completed their 20/21 budget which started in July. For information on the meeting click here. The meeting is once again scheduled at a time that is not accessible for many residents. While I understand that some of this scheduling is due to council members’ day jobs these budget meetings must be held when people can attend them. To not do so adds to the feelings that the City Staff and Council do not want an active citizenry.

The agenda and the packet only were issued for the meeting this afternoon (August 31st). Normally these packets are issued the Thursday before the meeting. Once again a ” budget study session” is on the agenda for the meeting and once again any slides that the consultant or staff have prepared ARE NOT in the packet. So El Cerrito residents do not have adequate time to prepare comments. They have to watch the meeting and comment during the meeting.

We have long been requesting that residents see the current financial status at each meeting or at least monthly. We have also been requesting a more transparent budget process. A meeting at an inaccessible time with a packet that has no actual information in it is NOT TRANSPARENT.

I urge those that care about this city and its financial situation to send in a public comment tomorrow (better yet if you can attend and comment during the meeting). Comments can be sent to cityclerk@ci.el-cerrito.ca.us and you should state public comment agenda item 3A if you want to discuss the budget.

I would also encourage you to send comments to the City Manager and the entire City Council. If they don’t hear from us they assume we are not longer paying attention.

Karen Pinkos-City Manager kpinkos@ci.el-cerrito.ca.us

Greg Lyman-Mayor glyman@ci.el-cerrito.ca.us

Paul Fadelli Vice Mayor pfadelli@ci.el-cerrito.ca.us

Councilperson Pardue-Okimoto rpardueokimoto@ci.el-cerrito.ca.us

Councilperson Janet Abelson jabelson@ci.el-cerrito.ca.us

Councilperson Gabe Quinto gquinto@ci.el-cerrito.ca.us

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