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Extra penny tax pays for 4 officers
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That extra one cent on every dollar that you spend in the City of Lathrop?
That’s going to pay for a lot of things including city staff positions and even police positions that were eliminated when the city was hit hard by the last budget crunch.
According to the proposed Measure C budget that the independent citizen oversight committee discussed last week, the City of Lathrop is currently funding the salaries and benefits of four police positions – two community impact team deputies, one administrative sergeant, and one school resource officer – that weren’t a part of the force when voters approved the tax in November of 2012.
And they’re adding a position for the upcoming year.
While the city had initially estimated they would receive $2 million in annual funding from the sales tax increase, that number rose to more than $3.15 million last year and is expected to take in $2.84 million over the course of the next 12 calendar months. With that additional money Lathrop will be looking into adding an additional deputy for investigations to assist with the workload in the growing community.
For the third straight year, Lathrop Manteca Fire Department will be getting slightly more money than what was originally estimated. A handshake agreement gives the district 40 percent of the revenue taken in by the sales tax to help supplement their budget and fund personnel and apparatus, and early estimates were that the district would receive an additional $800,000 from taxpayers.
For the upcoming year they are scheduled to receive $1.2 million – the majority of which will go to pay for six full-time firefighter positions that were on the verge of being eliminated before the tax was passed, and 66 percent of three battalion chief positions. Mathematically that amount pays almost the full salary and benefit package of two of those battalion chief slots.
The City of Lathrop will also benefit from the additional income as well.
Since the money isn’t earmarked for anything specific, the city has used its portion of the funds that aren’t going to fund police services in a variety of ways including hiring two previously unfunded facility supervisors, one parks superintendent and one office assistant to support the administrative operations at the Lathrop Generations Center.
The city has also used the money to fund the maintenance and operation of the Lathrop Generations Center – a combination teen center and library that boasts one of the most complete skate parks in the Northern San Joaquin Valley – and has spent $474,000 to achieve city council goals geared towards improving the life of residents by purchasing a mobile trailer for the Parks and Recreation Department, installing solar lights at Thomsen and Woodfield Parks, renovating improving senior center’s kitchen and the teen center’s café and installing new park equipment and a rubberized surface at Crescent, Mossdale and Woodfield Parks.
In addition to those projects, Measure C was also used to fund the installation of new equipment at the 7th Street Skate Park to give children on the east side of I-5 a local place where they can ride skateboards. 

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.