Good Government Awards: How Capital Planning Manages SF's Investment Priorities

BY COLE ARMSTRONG
April 19, 2011
San Francisco's Capital Planning Team helps the city make hard financial decisions in difficult times

SPUR’s 31st annual Good Government Awards, held earlier this year, honored five City of San Francisco employees and teams who have performed exceptionally, becoming models for other agencies and cities around the country.

The city’s Capital Planning Program team was honored for its ability to bring together a large group of city officials and reach a consensus on capital investment priorities. Created by city legislation in August 2005, the four-person team analyzes the city’s existing infrastructure and determines the need for maintenance and improvements. The team studies data on past construction costs, maintenance costs, inflation and market trends in order to estimate the costs of maintenance to existing infrastructure, the costs of completing new projects, and the fiscal consequences of delaying these undertakings. Based on these estimates, Capital Planning then makes recommendations about which projects should take priority and how they should be funded — a vital service during times of fiscal crises and budget cuts. Moreover, since its plans are based on hard estimates of cost to the city, the team's recommendations are remarkably free from the influence of political pressure.
 

Watch our video on Capital Planning’s work:

Good Government Awards 2011: Capital Planning from SPUR on Vimeo.

 

Read about the other 2011 Good Government winners:

How Cheryl Nashir increased retail sales at SFO >>

How JobsNow put San Franciscans back to work >>

How Susan Fernyak prevented an H1N1 disaster >>

How Dana Ketcham modernized SF's park permits >>