The city of Sacramento is having the conversation of consolidating city and county services to deal with budget issues.

Assistant City Manager, Gus Vina, prepared the following in a city staff report (see full staff report here):

“Sacramento County and the City of Sacramento each currently provide a range of municipal type services to the residents and businesses within their respective jurisdictions.

Considering the proximity of the unincorporated area of Sacramento County to the City of Sacramento and the common interest of the jurisdictions to provide effective and efficient high quality services, there may be an opportunity to functionally consolidate select services and maintain/improve the quality of service at a lower cost.

This report recommends the Council direct staff to evaluate the possible consolidation of a select number of services to determine whether an opportunity to reduce costs and increase efficiencies exist and to prepare a report back on the milestones, challenges, cost-savings/efficiencies opportunities and best practices for city/county services offering the most promise for functional consolidation.”

In some counties, where one large city carries so much weight, it would appear to make sense to take advantage of economies of scale.

What is your take on the idea of consolidating city and county services in your local government areas? What are the unforeseen pitfalls? How much money could be saved if it was a success?

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