“C” Your Success – Measure “C” at Work
In 2014, as Benicia was climbing its way out of the Great Recession, voters approved Measure C, a one cent-on-the-dollar local sales tax allocated to the General Fund. Specifically, the funds raised by this tax were meant to support existing City services and address public safety, parks, and infrastructure needs in response to reduced State and Federal funding and the changed economic landscape.
Benicia is unique compared with many other cities of its size in that it is a full-service city with its own city-run police, fire, park, and water services.
This factor, coupled with the effects of the Great Recession, left the city in a lurch as it attempted to maintain quality of life for its residents. After operational budgets were restructured and city staff took salary and benefit concessions to help close the funding gap, still more needed to be done.
Thankfully, Benicians stepped up and approved Measure C, ensuring we could all maintain the quality of life we are accustomed to. Since the tax was put in place in April of 2015, we began seeing many projects underway across the city with signs proclaiming, “Measure C Funding at Work.”
So, where are we seven years out?
Since 2015, $45,441,007 has been raised. 32.7% of that has been allocated to roads and infrastructure, 10.9% to parks and facilities, 7.9% to public safety, and 48.5% to services. Recall, the primary purpose of Measure C was to secure local funding to maintain our quality of life. Our quality of life in Benicia is a result of many things but a key factor are the services a City provides. This means maintaining staffing levels at our Police and Fire Departments, keeping the Library and City pool open; it means having the resources to maintain our parks and ball fields and having staff to support these operations. In addition to maintaining services, the City also invested in many projects to improve our public safety, facilities and roads, here is a closer look at a few:
- The Community Park playground was demolished and reconstructed with updated equipment.
- The police department received funds for an update to their Computer Aided Dispatch system which improved the interoperability of it and departments in the surrounding area.
- Nearly $15 Million Dollars have been allocated to improve and repair our streets.
- The historic Clocktower received a new roof and tower stabilization.
- The Benicia Public Library was able to implement Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) for its materials circulation, security, and inventory control systems. The library also had a new roof installed and the entire facility received new paint and roof replacement.
- The Fire Department replaced three Fire Engines.
This is by no means an exhaustive list of Measure C projects.
To read up on all the projects Measure C has funded, please visit the City website at www.ci.benicia.ca.us/measurec, and take pride in knowing that you helped make it all happen. Thank you, Benicians!