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Select an alternative for re-allocation of the City Council Meeting and Conference Budget.
The fiscal year 2002-03 Budget includes $25,500 for City Council travel, training and conference expenses. Each Councilmember is allocated $4,500 to utilize as they wish (within City Council policies for eligible expenditures) and an additional $3,000 is budgeted for extraordinary meeting and conference expenses that are approved by the City Council.
Traditionally, the full Council has attended the Contract Cities Legislative Seminar in Sacramento and the Contract Cities Annual Conference in Palm Springs. Other conferences/seminars that Councilmembers have attended this year include the Contract Cities Fall Conference, the League of Cities Annual Conference and the League of Cities Mayor and Councilmembers Academy. Each of these conferences costs about $1,200 for registration, travel, lodging and meals. In addition to these major events, the costs of attending local functions related to other organizations that the City supports is also charged against the $4,500 allocation for each Councilmember.
Over the past ten years City Councilmembers have not been active in the California League of Cities programs. However, with the adoption of the "Grassroots Network" program and the strong stands taken by the League over the past year several Councilmembers have become more active in League participation. Councilmember Clark has become particularly active in the League and is a member of the League Revenue and Taxation Policy Committee and the League Technology Committee. He also developed and successfully carried a policy resolution regarding undergrounding of utilities through the League hierarchy including the Los Angeles Division, the Public Works, Transportation and Communications Policy Committee, the Resolutions Committee and the General Assembly. In addition, Councilmember Clark has been active in California Contract Cities. He also made a special trip to Sacramento representing the City in support of the Peninsula School District financing issues. Currently Councilmember Clark has expended approximately $3,400 of his allocated $4,500. Mayor McTaggart has also become more active in the League and recently was appointed to the League Task Force on Water Quality. His participation in the Task Force has already required one trip to Sacramento for a meeting and will probably require at least one more this fiscal year.
On November 20, 2002 there were $17,152 of unexpended funds remaining in the City Council Meetings and Conferences account. Last year, the City Council spent a total of $12,616 of the allocated $25,500 from this account.
There appear to be adequate funds in the adopted budget to accommodate the anticipated Council meeting and conference plans for the remaining six months of the fiscal year. However, the $4,500 limitation for each Councilmember appears to be inadequate in light of active Council participation in both the League and Contract Cities.
There are a number of alternative approaches to addressing the allocation of these funds:
The various alternatives are further described in the matrix below.