Despite pleas from some residents, the City Council passed a drastically reduced 1997-98 budget, prompted by this month's defeat of a utility tax.
The city found itself with a $2.8-million budget shortfall when Proposition 218 effectively outlawed its lighting and landscaping taxing district.
In February, the council held marathon meetings to draw up two alternative budgets: a "red budget" that eliminated $2.8 million worth of city jobs and services, and a "green budget" that cut $1 million less. The City Council hoped to make up the difference in the green budget with a 2.5% utility tax put before the voters June 3.
But the tax lost, 5,105 to 3,577. And at Wednesday's meeting, council members voted 5-0 to pass the red budget. They said the voters made their choice clear--fewer city services rather than a new tax.
"I bought a Lotto ticket today and thought, 'Hmmm,' " Councilwoman Lois R. Berg said, drawing laughs from the audience of about 60. "But we are simply fated to do what we must do."