CATHEDRAL CITY (CNS) – Cathedral City leaders have voted to declare a fiscal emergency amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Like many valley cities, Cathedral City has faced financial challenges resulting from the pandemic, such as a decrease in expected revenue.
To address budget shortfalls amid the pandemic, the council previously approved budget reductions of approximately $8.3 million for the 2020-21 fiscal year. The council also agreed to draw down almost $6 million in reserves to balance the 2019-20 and 2020-21 budgets, according to the city.
On Wednesday night, the council voted unanimously to approve a resolution declaring a fiscal emergency.
“The benefit of having a formal declaration is that it sort of puts an exclamation point on what you had already done with the budget reconciliation and helps emphasize to the community that significant changes had to be made in order to protect the financial well-being of the community,” City Manager Charlie McClendon said in remarks reported by The Desert Sun.
The council also voted 3-2 to move its meeting times up one hour to 5:30 p.m. from 6:30 p.m. Council members discussed options for the start time during a July 8 study session, according to the city.
Mayor Pro Tem Raymond Gregory joined council members Mark Carnevale and Ernesto Gutierrez in support of adjusting the meeting time, while Mayor John Aguilar and Councilwoman Rita Lamb voted no, the Sun reported. The new meeting time will be effective beginning at the Sept. 9 council meeting.