Thursday, March 19, 2009

San Francisco's Budget Improvement Project

With the 2009-2010 fiscal year budget deficit at approximately $500 million (nearly half of the city’s General Fund), all eyes are on our local elected leaders to keep San Francisco’s perfect record of passing balanced budgets, on time. On March 16th, the Controller's Office presented the Budget Improvement Project report to Mayor Gavin Newsom and the Board of Supervisors. The report was commissioned by the Mayor and is a review of the structural barriers in maintaining a balanced budget going forward. Here are some of the findings:

  • Revenue and spending trends show the General Fund has grown from $2.4 billion to $4 billion in the last ten years;
  • 60% (!) of the General Fund spending growth has come from Public Health, Human Services, Police, and Fire with the majority of spending going to improve employee wages and benefits;
  • San Francisco provides a vast array of services at costs that exceed other cities and counties in California;
  • The two most volatile revenue sources for the General Fund are the real estate transfer tax, and the use of the prior year fund balance;
  • San Francisco's revenue base is more diversified and, therefore, more stable in comparison to peer cities and counties in California.

All this and more can be reviewed in the report.

No comments:

Post a Comment