With more than 300 requests seeking a portion of the county’s approximately $30 million in Measure A sales tax revenue available for new initiatives, the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday will discuss their funding priorities.
County Manager John Maltbie is recommending the board focus on priority areas where the funds can make substantial impact for the county’s low-income and underserved residents before the tax sunsets in eight years and where little or no Measure A funds have been previously used. Specifically, the targeted fields are:
- Ending homelessness and increasing affordable housing availability;
- Supporting foster youth from entry to emancipation and self-sufficiency;
- Protecting older adults and ensuring low-income residents can age in place;
- Environmental sustainability;
- Interventions in communities with lower high school graduation rates and higher truancy rates.
Applications receiving a preliminary “yes” recommendation will be invited to submit a more detailed application for consideration by the Board at its March 31 and April 13 Measure A hearings.
Applications falling under one of the identified priority areas but very similar to other requests can compete for funding. The County will issue a request for proposals in mid-April for those areas and those organizations and similar providers will be invited to submit a proposal for possible selection in June.
The Measure A half-cent general sales tax passed by voters in November 2012 generates approximately $80 million annually for a total of $160 million in the fiscal year 2015-2017 budget cycle. Of that, about $90 million will be spent on Measure A needs approved in the previous cycle and $40 million will be used for facilities and IT infrastructure projects. The remaining $30 million is earmarked for new initiatives.
During this funding cycle, the county encouraged community-based organizations, partners and cities to apply alongside county departments and programs. The result was more than 300 letters of intent totaling $290 million in requests including about $177 million for new initiatives.
“We love our not-for-profit partners and they do wonderful work. Measure A is an opportunity to hone in further and meet the needs of our most vulnerable residents,” said Board President Carole Groom. “The county has a strategic plan and goals and successful applications will align with them and adhere to the spirit of the ballot language.”
The Board of Supervisors meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 24 in Board Chambers, 400 County Center, Redwood City. The Measure A priorities study session begins at 9:30 a.m.