SAN FRANCISCO AND SAN MATEO COUNTIES TO FACE $136 MILLION COMBINED SHORTFALL AS RESULT OF GOVERNOR’S VLF REDUCTION

Assemblymember Leland Yee Opposes Governor’s Policy on VLF and Cuts to Vital Mental Health Services

SAN FRANCISCO – Today the City and County of San Francisco and the County of San Mateo will face the real effects of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Vehicle License Fee (VLF) reduction, as their scheduled VLF disbursement is reduced by approximately 50%. Assistant Speaker pro Tempore Leland Yee, who represents both San Francisco and San Mateo County, denounced the Governor’s cuts to vital community services and his recent action on the VLF.

“The Governor has yet to provide a proposal on how to fill this $4 billion hole to the State’s budget,” said Assemblymember Yee. “So far, all the Governor has put on the table is drastic cuts to children’s health programs, services to the developmentally disabled, and created waiting lists for AIDS patients.”

Controller Steve Westly will follow the regular schedule to disburse VLF proceeds to local jurisdictions. However, due to the repeal of the recent increase in the VLF by Governor Schwarzenegger, those disbursements will be reduced from $355 million to $177 million. The balance of the $355 million collected in November will be reserved by the Department of Motor Vehicles to fund a portion of the refunds to 3.3 million car owners who paid the higher VLF rate.

“As a former San Francisco Supervisor, I am very concerned about the loss of revenues to local agencies, especially in regards to public safety,” said Assemblymember Yee. “I fought to keep VLF funds flowing to local governments and I will continue trying to find ways to keep our cops on the streets and our firefighters on the job.”

The City and County of San Francisco may take a $91 million hit to their budget, while the County of San Mateo may face a $45 million shortfall.