Digital News Report – Officials from the City of Santa Cruz have released their 2011 Annual Report discussing the current state of operations along with the city budget and expenditures. The Santa Cruz budget was reduced eleven times over the past few years, which has also reduced the number of employees working for the city. The city had reduced their employees from 900 down to 780.
Santa Cruz city officials remain optimistic that the economy is recovering in the area. There still is a problem budgeting for 2011-2012 with the increasing health-care and retirement benefit expenses out-pacing the economic recovery.
The population has grown slightly over the years. In 2000, there were 54,593 residents. In 2005, there were 54,593. Now in 2010, there are now 59,946 residents living in Santa Cruz. Homeless residents in 2000, were 3,040 individuals; 2005 there were 2,380; and in 2010, the homeless numbered 1,840.
The crime rate in Santa Cruz increased for violent crimes in 2010, with 553 reports being filed by the police. There were six murders in 2010, which was also an increased rate. The number of assaults reported was 396. There were 111 cases of domestic violence. Property crimes were reduced from the prior year with 2,937 cases being reported. There were 81,496 emergency calls for service that the city received in 2010.
The annual report also talks about how the city as a whole has reduced carbon emissions and reduced water usage. There is information about community participation in the public library and with the Parks and Recreation classes and activities.
The report can be read online at http://www.cityofsantacruz.com/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=20822.
By: Mark Williams