Mayor Edwin M. Lee today presented his proposed balanced budget for seven City departments (the Airport, Port, Public Utilities Commission, Municipal Transportation Agency, Child Support Services, Retirement System and Public Library), totaling $5.9 billion over the next two years. The May 1st budget includes enterprise and other self-supporting departments. The proposed capital projects deliver more than $4 billion into the local economy and support over 36,000 local jobs.
“We have opportunity to protect and continue our economic recovery while at the same time improve our City’s infrastructure for generations to come,”said Mayor Lee. “As we invest in and strengthen our transportation, waterfront and water system infrastructure, we are also putting our residents back to work. We will ensure that San Francisco remains an economic engine for the region and is a City that people from all levels of the economic spectrum can call home.”
“As Chair of the Budget and Finance Committee, I look forward to an in depth review of the Mayor’s May 1st budget proposal,” said Supervisor Mark Farrell. “Although San Francisco is in a better place economically, we cannot take anything for granted and must continue to ensure that our City is fiscally responsible, safe and successful while balancing many competing needs.”
City departments included in the May 1st proposed budget are integral to the short-and long-term economic health of San Francisco, and provide important direct services to the public. These departments are making substantial investments in capital infrastructure, including projects to structurally improve piers along the Port’s waterfront, renovate terminals at SFO, and implement streetscape improvements throughout the City to make our streets safer for all users—pedestrians, transit riders, cyclists and drivers. The proposed capital projects included in this budget, and accompanying capital appropriations, will delivers more than $4 billion into our local economy and support more than 36,000 local jobs.
A well-functioning, safe, and efficient public transportation system is critical to ensuring that San Francisco is accessible and livable for all. The Municipal Transportation Agency’s budget implements a 10 percent service increase over the next two years, which includes additional maintenance and front-line transit workers. This investment will ensure the reliability, affordability, and accessibility of our City’s public transit system, which is central to San Francisco’s well-being and livability.
Aging, outdated infrastructure and insufficient vehicles are a major cause of service delays and performance challenges for the public transit system, and San Francisco must invest $10.1 billion in transportation infrastructure over the next 15 years, according to findings from the SF 2030 Transportation Task Force. Taking a comprehensive approach to funding San Francisco’s long-underfunded transportation system by 2030, Mayor Lee, working with the Board of Supervisors, will support the SF 2030 Transportation Task Force’s two recommendations for 2014, bringing to the voters this November a $500 million general obligation transportation bond and a measure to increase the local vehicle license fee.
The May 1st budget also invests in making libraries even more safe and welcoming to all of its patrons, including a new Teen Digital Media Lab at San Francisco’s Main Public Library to engage young people and ensure they have access to new technology and training that prepares them for the jobs of the 21st Century economy. The City’s continued investment in a strong library system ensures that San Franciscans not only have equal access to information, but free and low-cost educational opportunities that make San Francisco a more affordable and enjoyable place to live.
The May 1st proposal is the first step in crafting a balanced budget for the coming year. However, extensive work remains in the coming weeks. Working with the Board of Supervisors, residents, businesses, and all stakeholders, Mayor Lee must close a $66.7 million General Fund budget shortfall in Fiscal Year (FY) 2014-15, and a $133.4 million General Fund shortfall in FY 2015-16, by June 1st, and finalize the City’s balanced budget.
The Mayor’s proposed May 1st Balanced Budget is available online, go to: http://sfmayor.org/index.aspx?page=981