MARTINEZ (KCBS)— Contra Costa supervisors are expected to adopt a new county budget next month and the county administrator is optimistic about it, despite rising-pension costs.

“A lot of counties in California have significant pension obligation debt. On the other hand, ours is imperatively fairly high,” said Administrator David Twa during a presentation where he called the pensions, “the big elephant in the room.”

The fire protection district could lose two more fire houses bringing the total closures to six.

Still, Twa held on to bright spots – adding that state revenues are up, as they consider a new budget.

“We’ve had minimal layoffs for the last four years and there are no layoffs potentially planned, other than what might happen as it relates to the fire district, in this particular budget,” Twa said.

Twa called the debt “a dramatic hole.” The Contra Costa Times has reported that the county expects to spend $234.5 million on pension contributions this fiscal year.

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