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Revenues up, expenses down at San Ramon Valley Fire

Chief: "The district finally has some financial breathing room"

The San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District is expecting higher-than-predicted revenues and lower operating costs this year, with a fund balance expected to top $4 million at the end of the fiscal year in June.

"For the first time in four years, the district finally has some financial breathing room," said Fire Chief Page Meyer. "I attribute this to a combination of measures, including reduced capital spending, lower overhead costs, an improving economy but most importantly the employee's commitment to the financial health of our district and its future."

District employees agreed to a number of significant cost-saving provisions last June. Those include pay reductions and increased personal contributions to employee medical and retirement. These cuts in payroll costs and a rebound in property values have put the district in a more financially sustainable position.

"General fund revenue is projected to exceed budget this fiscal year by approximately $3.5 million," financial consultant Ken Campo reported. "Additionally, general fund spending is tracking lower than budget at mid-year. "

Campo said the district is projected to add $4 million to its fund balance at the fiscal year's end, and Meyer said building reserves was one of his top priorities when he took the job last year.

"I am pleased that we are making progress toward achieving this goal in 2014, but we still have work ahead," Meyer said.

Campo's full report is available for download at the fire district's website.

The San Ramon Valley Fire provides fire, rescue and emergency medical services to Danville and San Ramon, along with the communities of Alamo, Blackhawk, Diablo, the southern area of Morgan Territory and the Tassajara Valley. Its service area encompasses approximately 155 square miles and a population of 170,000.

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