COVID-19 UPDATE | The City is coordinating closely with our public health officials at the Santa Cruz County Health Department to prevent the further spread COVID-19. In an effort to protect you and our community, changes and measures have been adopted in daily operations and activities. For further details please click here for the City’s Response to COVID-19

Finance Department Services and COVID-19 

Due to the ever-evolving situation surrounding COVID-19, the City of Santa Cruz Finance Department offices will be closed until further notice. If you plan to come into the office after March 20th, we suggest checking Our Response to COVID-19 web page to determine if our offices have opened.  

In the meantime, payments can be made online (, by mail (333 Front Street, Suite 200, Santa Cruz, CA 95060) or by dropping payment in the drop box (809 Center Street, Room 101).

Thank you for your patience at this time.

The Finance Department provides chief financial support of and advises on financial matters for the City, including its Public Safety, Water, Refuse, Wastewater, Public Works, Parks & Recreation and other key programs. It also provides contract support services for the Santa Cruz Public Libraries Joint Powers Authority, the University of California, Santa Cruz fire services, and supports the Successor Agency of the City of Santa Cruz (former Redevelopment Agency).

The department is organized in five functional sections: (1) Accounting, Administration, Budgeting, and Reporting; (2) Accounts Payable and Payroll; (3) Purchasing and Applications Management; (4) Revenue and Treasury Compliance and Management; and (5) Risk Management, Advanced Debt Collections, Safety, and Revenue Audits.  

Accounting, Administration, Budgeting, and Reporting:

  • Directs overall department operations;
  • Performs short-range and long-range financial planning;
  • Monitors financial condition of the City;
  • Develops and implements financial policies, plans, and reporting systems that help the operating departments achieve their objectives, and assure the City's long-term fiscal health.
  • Prepares the City Budget; and
  • Prepares annual financial reports.

Accounts Payable and Payroll

  • Processes all City disbursements;
  • Ensures that all payroll and vendor records are maintained and reported in accordance with federal and state tax laws;
  • Administers the capital asset policy;
  • Provides division-related professional accounting services, including the projection of personnel costs; and
  • Administers the following programs: Refundable deposits, petty cash, and unclaimed checks.


  • Provides services for all City departments and is responsible for ensuring that expenditures comply with the law;
  • Issues Purchase Orders and provides fair and prompt service to the City's business community;
  • Ensures that goods and services received comply with the City's terms and conditions; and
  • Maintains on-line bids and RFPs. 


  • Responsible for analyzing revenues for all City operations;
  • Manages tax compliance, including, but not limited to admission tax, cannabis business tax, and transient occupancy tax;
  • Maintains Accounts Receivable, Alcohol Sales Permit fees, and tax compliance records;
  • Provides Business Licenses and maintains the Business License Internet Database for public access; and 
  • Invests funds in accordance with the City's investment policy.

Risk Management, Advanced Debt Collections, Safety, and Revenue Audits

  • Oversees and directs the City's Risk Management, loss control, and liability insurance administration programs;
  • Manages general liability and property insurance coverage, retaining loss exposure for the first $1,000,000 of each liability claim;
  • Conducts audits of hotels and motels in accordance with the City's transient occupancy tax law;
  • Manages the City's debt collections recovery programs; and
  • Coordinates the City's employee safety programs.

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