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News Update

Dispute over millions in crossing guard funding hits Santa Ana

A bitter funding dispute between Santa Ana City Council members and school district officials could leave thousands of kids without crossing guards this year in a town where drivers are known to treat the streets as if they are freeways, The Voice of OC reported.

The issue centers on the city’s yearslong arrangement to pay for crossing guards that serve the Santa Ana Unified School District, guiding children through busy intersections to as many as 41 schools, according to the Voice of OC. But when a new five-year, $7 million crossing-guard agreement landed on council members’ desks at a meeting this week, a majority of them opted to hold off.

It’s part of a long-standing political feud between the council and the school board, the Voice of OC reported.

“Come the next school year, in August, we would not have any crossing guards assisting students” without some kind of agreement, city Public Works Director Nabil Saba said in response to council questions at a meeting.

Some council members said the district should split the cost with the city, while others said the district should pay for the guards, the Voice of OC reported. The district and the city have until June 30 to reach an agreement, the news site reported.