Huntington Beach

5% workforce cuts in 2020-21?

MAYOR ERIK PETERSON looked patriotic at the 2020 July 4 parade in Huntington Beach. The event will be different this year because of the coronavirus pandemic (Orange County Tribune photo by Jim Tortolano).

The City of Huntington Beach may face a 5 percent cut in its workforce because of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

At a study session on Monday, the council discussed the proposed 2020-21 fiscal year budget and the grim possibility of major slashes in spending because of losses in tax revenue brought about by the closing of restaurants, stores and other financial resources.

A major part of budget savings could come from an early retirement program to reduce the number of employees.

Also on Monday night, the council:

  • announced the winners of the July 4 fireworks permit lottery.
  • heard an update on this year’s Independence Day celebrations, with the theme of “Homefront 4th of July.” A neighborhood celebration, a “re-imagined” parade – adjusted for COVID-19 social distancing requirements – home decorating and front yard float contests are among the likely features.
  • approved on a 7-0 vote a program allowing for “temporary outdoor emergency commercial activity on public and private property to boost businesses hit hard by pandemic. Elements of the program would include expansion of outdoor dining space for eateries and temporary signs and banner uses.

The next regularly scheduled council meeting is set for Monday, June 15 at 4 p.m.

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