On Wednesday May 18th, 2011, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously passed a 6.9-billion dollar budget for the upcoming fiscal year 2011-2012. This was a difficult budget, and my Council colleagues and I had to wrestle with tough and complicated choices in approving the Mayor's proposed spending plan. However, there are positive aspects to the budget we just approved after many hours of deliberation. Among them are expanded library hours, increased funding for street repairs, the consolidation of operations around core-functions that will reduce overlap and redundancy. The Los Angeles Police Department will be maintained at current staffing levels, allowing Chief Charlie Beck to build on the crime-reduction momentum we've seen in recent years. I know that many community members are very concerned about the implications of the new Deployment Plan for the Los Angeles Fire Department that will go into effect this coming July 2011. Chief Millage Peaks has worked hard to assure that no fire stations are closing and that no fire fighters will be laid-off as a result of this budget.