Digital Divide. The Board passed a resolution allowing the
Employment and Human Services Department to provide surplus personal computers
to its low-income customers. EHSD partnered with a nonprofit to refurbish
the computers make them available. In addition, the nonprofit provides training
and maintenance of the computers along with free or low cost Internet access to
help low income families in Contra Costa County bridge the digital
divide. Approximately 600 computers are being refurbished and will be
made available to low income families in the near future.
Food Access. Low income people with immediate
family food needs have their CalFresh applications processed within three days
in Contra Costa (vs 30 days for the standard application).
Health Access. Successfully negotiated a contract
extension with the State to remain the only County operated Covered California
Call Center in the state.
Expanded Child Care. Received a $1.1 million federal grant
to provide Early Head Start services to 72 infants and toddlers. This grant is
unique in that CSB is partnering with the Childcare Council to
provide these services in family childcare homes throughout the county.
Most of our Employees have agreed to an average
wage reduction of 2.75% plus agreeing to assume 100% of the Employees share of
pension costs. These reductions will save the County over $28 million in
2012/13 and will allow the County to achieve a structurally balance budget for
2012/13. (This means we will not have to use fund balance and do not anticipate
any layoffs or further reductions in services to the public).
Many of the people who have retired (617 in
2011) will need to be replaced in order to continue to provide adequate
services to the public. However, the goal is to be judicious in replacing only
those positions that the County can afford, and that insure delivery of
essential services to the public.