County of Marin - News Releases - Budget Update

For Immediate Release
February 04, 2016

Supervisors Provide Input on Next County Budget

Spending priorities will inform budget recommendations in March

San Rafael, CA – The County of Marin is preparing a two-year budget for fiscal years 2016-18, and the Board of Supervisors provided input to staff about funding priorities during its February 2 meeting.

Marin County Budget Manager Bret Uppendahl speaks to the Board of Supervisors.Marin County Budget Manager Bret Uppendahl speaks to the Board of Supervisors on February 2.
The Board, which approved its first two-year budget in 2014, will vote on a County budget of more than $500 million in June and may allocate limited one-time and ongoing funds toward its highest priorities. The Board priorities discussed during the planning process include:
  • investing in County road infrastructure;
  • addressing and adapting to climate change;
  • mitigating effects of income inequality;
  • implementing the County’s new 5 Year Business Plan;
  • preserving affordable housing, and;
  • reducing unfunded retiree obligations.

“I think it’s a positive thing to keep going forward with our two-year budget process,” Supervisor Steve Kinsey, the Board President, said during the meeting. … I also think that it’s important that we keep looking for ways to set aside a little bit more in our reserves for our post-employment responsibilities, primarily our pension.”

Budget Manager Bret Uppendahl said the budget update and discussion with the Board was intended to help inform budget recommendations for the coming year. “We are continuing to refine our revenue and expenditure projections for the upcoming two-year planning period,” he said. “Our March workshops will provide an overview of our recommendations and the Board will vote on the budget in June.”

Uppendahl said economic indicators look good for Marin, but revenue growth is largely keeping pace with the increased cost to maintain current services. Property tax revenue is expected to grow by 6 percent but it only accounts for 25 percent of County revenues. Uppendahl is recommending that departments update their fees to keep pace with inflation.

Residents are encouraged to offer feedback about the budget during the March workshops, and may examine the County’s budget online anytime through its OpenGov portal.

Over the past several years, the County has cut ongoing expenses by more than $30 million and reduced its workforce by approximately 10 percent. Over the past three years, the County reduced its unfunded retiree liabilities by more than $230 million, leading all three independent bond rating agencies to affirm Marin County’s AAA credit rating.

“Our goal in preparing a budget is to be open and transparent, make recommendations consistent with our long-term priorities, and to be fiscally responsible to the residents we serve,” County Administrator Matthew Hymel said. “The shared goal is to make Marin safe, healthy, equitable and sustainable.”


Bret Uppendahl
Budget Manager
County Administrator's Office

3501 Civic Center Drive
Suite #325
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-6358
Email: Bret Uppendahl
County Administrator website