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Public Safety, which includes police and fire services, is a top priority in the City of Chula Vista. As part of the fiscal year 2017-18 adopted budget, the City allocated 65 percent of discretionary revenues to the Police and Fire Departments combined. The allocation includes the five new police officer positions added as part of the fiscal year 2017-18 adopted budget.

At the June 6, 2017 Council Meeting, the City Manager was directed to “report back to the City Council within 120 days with a plan to address the chronic understaffing of the Police and Fire Departments, with such plan considering all options, including: (i) alternative service models that may improve effectiveness and reduce costs; and (ii) potential funding sources.” Staff delivered the Public Safety Staffing Report to the City Council on September 26, 2017 and the Public Safety Staffing Strategies report on December 19, 2017. On February 13, 2018, City Council approved the Intended Public Safety Expenditure Plan. Also on February 13, the City Council approved placing a half-cent sales tax on the June ballot to fund public safety/public services. On December 18, 2018, City Council approved the Amended Public Safety Expenditure Plan.

Public Safety Staffing Cover September
Public Safety Staffing Report
Public Safety Staffing Strategies
Intended Public Safety Expenditure Plan
Intended Public Safety Expenditure Plan 2018


The Chula Vista Fire Department (CVFD) and Chula Vista Police Department (CVPD) have been collaborating to assess factors affecting public safety, including:

  • Community and stakeholder feedback/input on priorities for delivery of public safety services
  • Short and long-term staffing level standards for CVPD and CVFD
  • Response times for Priority 1 and Priority 2 emergency Calls for CVPD
  • Response times with properly equipped and staffed fire and medical units for CVFD
  • Consideration of alternate public safety service delivery models
  • Accounting for growth – 5-year, 10-year and build-out projection models
  • Fiscal forecasts and impacts (See Long-Term Financial Plan)

The Public Safety Staffing Report, presented to the City Council on September 26, 2017, provided an assessment of historical and current staffing levels for CVFD and CVPD, and outlined possible alternative service models. At that meeting, the City Council directed the City Manager to conduct a public opinion survey, inform the community about public safety staffing issues presented, and return to Council with options to address staffing issues, including funding options.

The Public Safety Staffing Strategies report, presented to City Council on December 19, 2017, extends the analysis and information covered in the Public Safety Staffing Report and includes: staffing allocations for CVFD and CVPD to provide critical services; estimated costs for phasing of staffing; assessment of potential funding sources; and results of a public opinion survey.

The City Council directed staff to continue working with the PSAC, public safety, staff and other stakeholders to consider options for placing a sales tax measure on the June or November 2018 ballot to provide a funding source for key city services.

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