Orange County Seal

Posted: Friday, June 14, 2013 4:48 pm | Updated: 7:03 pm, Fri Jun 14, 2013.
By NORBERTO SANTANA JR.

County Supervisor Todd Spitzer said that when he and Supervisors’ Chairman Shawn Nelson joined state Sen. Lou Correa for a meeting on Thursday with the governor’s staff to discuss a dispute involving $73 million in property taxes, they were confronted over their straw votes this week to exempt themselves from budget cuts imposed on other departments.

Spitzer voted along with Supervisors Janet Nguyen and Pat Bates earlier this week on a straw vote for the annual Orange County budget to not make a 5-percent cut for all departments mandatory for supervisors’ offices. Nelson and John Moorlach voted for the cut.

“They [the governor’s staff] brought up your article,” Spitzer said, adding that he understood the concerns. He also said he will be switching his vote when the final budget comes up for consideration during a special meeting on June 24.

“Given the fact that it is important to the governor’s office that the board offices not just cut voluntarily but affirm it as a part of the formal budget adoption, I agreed,” Spitzer said.

“It’s the principle,” Spitzer said. “The governor’s office wants to see it mandated. And I understand the governor’s argument, and I’m happy to oblige.”

“There will now be 5 percent cut across the board from supervisors’ budgets,” Spitzer said. “I’ll be voting for that.”

Spitzer was in Sacramento as supervisors and Orange County labor officials mounted a lobbying full-court press to try to avoid having state officials take back more than $140 million in property taxes after the county lost its challenge in court.

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