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Released by: Board of Supervisors
For Immediate Release

Sonoma County Board of Supervisors Welcomes Community Input on Next Year’s Budget

Budget Hearings Scheduled to Begin on June 12th

Santa Rosa, CA  –  June 7, 2017  –  Sonoma County residents will have the opportunity to review and provide input on the County’s $1.57 billion Fiscal Year 2017-2018 budget, with the public hearing scheduled to start on Monday, June 12, 2017.  The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors will convene the hearings, which will include an overview of the budget as a whole, as well as individual reviews of a selection of the County’s 27 departmental budgets.  The hearings will take place at the Board’s chambers located at 575 Administration Drive, Room 1A, Santa Rosa.  The community is also encouraged to learn more about the County’s budget with the online tool SoCo Budget, which provides detailed information on the County’s operating budget.

“I strongly encourage our community to participate in Sonoma County’s budget making process by attending a hearing or learning more about the budget on the County’s website,” said Sonoma County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Shirlee Zane.  “The rubber meets the road during budget hearings.  Critical funding decisions related to spending on roadway repairs, law enforcement services, and health services will all be considered. We need and value the input of our community as we make these decisions.”

The County annually holds community budget hearings to review the proposed budgets of each department, such as Health and Human Services, Transportation and Public Works, and the Sheriff’s Office.  The County budget is composed of two groups of funds totaling $1.57 billion: dedicated funds and the General Fund. Dedicated funds are the largest portion of the County budget. These funds include contracts for services, fees, and levies that have been collected for specific purposes and must be allocated by law toward those purposes. For example, bus fares must fund transit and sewer fees fund wastewater treatment. The General Fund pays for important services such as law enforcement that are not supported by dedicated revenues for the most part.

“County departments have worked hard to recommend a budget that continues to support critical services for our community while maximizing every property tax dollar, and maintaining long term fiscal stability ,” said Sonoma County Administrator Sheryl Bratton.  “We intend to listen to the Board of Supervisors and our community to ensure the County’s budget represents our strategic priorities, including housing for all, healthy watersheds, rebuilding our infrastructure, and securing our safety net.” 

The County is the property tax collector for all taxing districts within Sonoma County. Although property taxes are collected by the County, only .27 cents of every dollar is used to fund County services. The rest goes to other agencies, including .48 cents to public education, .09 cents to cities and towns, and .08 cents to other taxing districts such as wastewater and other special districts.

Budget Hearing Schedule:

Budget hearings are scheduled to begin on June 12, 2017, at 8:30 a.m. and may be continued from day to day as needed for a maximum of 14 calendar days per state law. The Board will adopt the budget, containing such revisions as the Board of Supervisors determines, at the conclusion of the hearings.

County Budget Facts:

The County Administrator Office’s Recommended Budget for Fiscal Year 2017/18 is increasing by less than 1% to $1.57 billion.

Of the $1.57 billion, $308 million is available to fund general County services (General Fund), such as public safety, local investments in roads, and health/human services local match requirements.

Includes total 4,123 full-time permanent staff positions, a decrease from last year’s adopted budget that is primarily attributable to eliminating positions in Human Services. In addition, 85 positions will be held vacant and unfunded to align with available departmental funding, including 21 in the Sheriff’s Office, 40 in Health Services, 1 in the Clerk-Recorder-Assessor’s Office, and 23 in Transportation and Public Works.

General Fund ($308 million) general purpose revenue largely comes from

  • Property and sales taxes (81.3%)
  • Cost plan reimbursements (4.6%)
  • Prior Year Fund Balance (4.3%)
  • 25% of Transient Occupancy tax (1.2%)
  • Other sources (8.8%)

General Fund general purpose revenues ($308 million) are mainly assigned as follows

  • Sheriff’s Office (29.1% or $89.7 million)
  • Probation (11.4% or $35 million)
  • Human Services (8.4% or $25.9 million)
  • General Services (6.1% or $18.8 million)
  • District Attorney’s Office (5.4% or $16.6 million)
  • Roads: Operations and Pavement (5.1% or $15.6 million)
  • Clerk Recorder Assessor (4.2% or $12.8 million)

More information about the County’s budget can be found here:


Contact Information

County Administrator's Office
County of Sonoma
575 Administration Drive
Room 104A
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.464626, -122.725441