FY 2020 Budget Priorities

DATE: January 18, 2019

TO: Andrea Tevlin, Independent Budget Analyst

FROM: Councilmember Vivian Moreno

SUBJECT: FY 2020 Budget Priorities (Print Memo)

Please see my budget priorities for the Fiscal Year 2020 budget listed below.

District 8 Capital Improvement Projects and Services

31st St.@ National Ave. Traffic Signal (CIP Bl 7019)
This project proposes to install a complete new traffic signal at the intersection of 31st St and National Ave. Construction funding is needed for FY20.
Estimated Cost: $500,000

Gamma St. Mini-Park ADA Improvements (CIP L16000.1)
This project provides for ADA improvements including upgrades to the children’s play area and associated path of travel, new security lighting, picnic areas and seating. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2020.
Estimated Cost: $1,050,000

Island Ave. Mini Park Improvements (CIP L16000.2)
This project provides for ADA improvements including upgrades to the children’s play area and associated path of travel, new security lighting, picnic areas and seating. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2020.
Estimated Cost: $1,240,000

Clay St. Mini Park Improvements (CIP Ll6000.5)
Project Description:
This project provides for ADA improvements. including upgrades to the children’s play area and associated path of travel, new security lighting, picnic areas and seating. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2020.
Estimated Cost: $1,050,000

J St. Mini Park Improvement (CIP Ll6000.6)
Project Description:
This project provides for ADA improvements including upgrades to the children’s play area and associated path of travel, new security lighting, picnic areas and seating. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2020.
Estimated Cost: $950,000

Commercial & 20th Storage Facility Cleaning, Sanitization and Code Enforcement
The area around this facility should continue to receive an increased level of streets and sidewalk cleaning/sanitization. Additionally, increased code enforcement staffing is critical to ensure the area around the facility remains clean and free of debris.

Paradise Senior Center Improvements (CIP S15002)
Project Description:
This project provides for the design and construction of ADA upgrades and expansion of the existing Paradise Senior Center. This..project is under construction. Any funding required to complete construction should be allocated in the FY20 budget.

Chicano Park Community Center/ Museum and Cultural Center (CIP S18008)
The Chicano Park Community Center is a single story 9,890 square foot building located adjacent to Chicano Park. The facility was originally built in 1971 and is part of the Parks and Recreation Department. This project focuses on addressing key building systems that benefit the city. In FY20 funding should be allocated for interior doorways, windows and paneling. Estimated cost: $200,000

Dangerous Intersection Infrastructure Investments
The following locations are dangerous intersections that were not funded in FYI 9 and should be funded in FY20:

  • Cesar Chavez Parkway & National A venue (Estimated Cost: $30,000)
  • Market Street & 30th Street (Estimated Cost: $30,000)

Hidden Trails Community Park Project (CIP S00995)
This project provides for the acquisition, design and construction of an approximately 3.7 acre Neighborhood Park located in the Hidden Trails Subdivision. The project could include sport fields, children1s play areas, walking paths and other amenities. The total estimated cost of the project is $5.2 million. A CIP has been created to allow the General Development Plan (GDP) to move forward. An additional $340,000 is required to complete the construction document phase in FY20. $5 million of additional funds will be required for once the construction document phase is complete.
Estimated Cost: $340,000

Riviera Del Sol Community Park Project (CIP S00999)
This project provides for the design and construction of a neighborhood park, approximately 4.90 acres within the Otay Mesa Community. A GDP was completed and approved by the Park and Recreation Board in 2012. Design drawings began in 2014 but will need to be updated to current standards and revised to include a comfort station as recommended by the Park and Recreation Board. The project is fully funded including construction, I respectfully ask for a commitment from staff to ensure this project moves forward in FY20 and that any additional funds needed to complete construction be proposed in FY20 budget.

Southwest Neighborhood Park
This project is P-13 in the Otay Mesa/Nestor Community Plan Update’s Pubic Facilities Financing Plan. The project would provide for the design and construction of 11.54 gross/6.82 useable acres on city owned dedicated parkland, and will include a new comfort station and play area. This park would serve a park deficient community next to a school and multiple residential units. The total estimated cost of the project is $8.8 million. An earlier request to allocate
$460,000 on Otay Mesa/Nestor DIF to this project to allow the development of the GDP was granted. I respectfully request this project to be reflected in the FY20 Budget and that the GDP move forward in FY20.

Egger/South Bay Community Park ADA Improvements (CIP S15031)
This project provides for the design and construction of ADA improvements for the children’s play areas and associated paths of travel to comply with accessibility requirements. Staff has completed the hiring of the consultant to perform the design of the project. The available funding is for the design and most of the construction costs. Park and Recreation staff are identifying the rest of the construction funds for a small playground that was not part of the original scope. I respectfully ask for the FY20 budget to include additional funding for the small playground be included in the FY20 budget as staff establishes the final cost.

Saturn Boulevard-Palm Avenue to Coronado Avenue (CIP S00861)
This project, provides for widening the west side of Saturn Boulevard to a four-lane collector street from Palm A venue to Coronado A venue. Improvements include cons1ruction of concrete curb, gutter, installation of sidewalks, drainage facilities, asphalt concrete pavement, and landscaping as necessary. This CIP project was halted due to funding was closed on 2012, however due to the importance of these improvements the CIP should be reopened.

Otay Mesa/Nestor Community Plan Update
The first Otay Mesa-Nestor was adopted in 1979 and it was last updated in 1997. An Otay Mesa­Nestor Community Plan Update should be included in the FY20 community plan update work plan and FY20 budget.

Beyer Park
This project would create a 12.6 acre community park serving the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa communities. The GDP and design of the project will soon be complete. The next step would be to fund the project’s initial construction phase.
Estimated cost: $400,000

Sidewalks Improvements

  • Howard Ave. (east side) between Village Pine Dr. and Iris Ave.
    • (50/50 cost share-$22,500′ San Ysidro & $22,500 Otay Mesa-Nestor)
  • Smythe Ave. (both sides) between Beyer Blvd. and SR-905
  • Cottonwood Rd. (both sides) between W. San Ysidro Blvd. and Vista Ln.
  • Seaward Ave. (south side) between Cottonwood Rd. and West Park Ave.
  • Border Village Rd. (both sides) between the north and south connections to E. San Ysidro Blvd.
  • Calle Primera (north side) between Via De San Ysidro and Willow Rd.
  • Cottonwood Rd. (west side) Beyer Blvd. to Foothill Rd.Smythe Ave. (both sides) between Sunset Ln. and W. San Ysidro Blvd.
  • Alverson Rd. (both sides) between Sunset Ln. and W. San Ysidro Blvd.
  • W. San Ysidro Blvd. between Dairy Mart Rd. and 1-805; E. San Ysidro Blvd. between 1- 805 & San Ysidro border crossing

West San Ysidro Blvd and Sunset Lane Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon
Installation of a Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon in a Non-Smart Growth Area at West San Ysidro Blvd & Sunset and pedestrian refuge island – Project Bl 8048.
Estimated cost: $90,000

Fire Station 30 Parking Lot
Fire Station 30’s parking lot requires slurry seal to help preserve its asphalt parking lot.

Fire Station 6 Facility Improvements
Fire Station 6 requires a kitchen and bathroom remodel to accommodate the :firefighters assigned to that station.

Citywide Proiects and Services:

Transportation and Storm Water Department Grant Writer
To take advantage of regional, state and federal funding opportunities for transportation projects, the city should hire a grant writer solely focused on securing funding for these activities and projects.

Sidewalk Maintenance and Repair
The city must take action to develop a funding plan to address the findings in the sidewalk condition assessment and mitigate all tripping hazards to effectively reduce the city’s liability and improve the conditions of our sidewalks. The FY20 budget should include increased funding for sidewalk repair and construction of new sidewalks.

Increased staffing to respond to requests received through the Get It Done App
The Get It Done (GID) app is a popular and convenient way for the public to communicate with the city regarding the need for repairs to city infrastructure. As a result, the city is receiving more requests than ever. As a result, there is a need to increase staffing within some city departments (Transportation and Storm Water, Public Utilities, Police etc.) so that”the city can effectively respond, without unfairly burdening existing employees who have taken on the increased workload so far, but cannot continue to respond in an effective and timely way as GID app requests continue to increase,
The FY 2020 budget should include additional administrative support staff for affected departments in order to ensure a more efficient and appropriate classification to process GID app requests,

Public Utilities Department Staffing Vacancies
There are over 200 vacant positions throughout in the Public Utilities Department (PUD). These positions are critical to providing high quality services to the public and need to begin being filled. The highest priority positions to be funded and filled in FY20 are as follows:

  • Customer Support Division/Field Services & Investigations/Meter Reading Section (10 FTEs): 10 hourly positions should be made permanent FTEs in order to help assist with meter readings throughout the city. These positions have existed for five years and there is a clear need for the work these employees perform.
  • Senior Civil Engineer positions: These positions would help assist with the implementation of the Pure Water Program. Instead of utilizing outside consultants to do this critical work, the city should hire additional employees under this classification to do the work. The Pure Water Program is critical to the future of our city and ensuring that city employees are engaged in all levels of the project over the life of their career will ensure that the PUD workforce retains invaluable institutional knowledge regarding the project.
  • Corrosion Engineer positions (2 FTEs): Two new FTEs are needed to help address the backlog of water main condition assessments. These FTEs will help identity and prevent corrosion of city infrastructure and save the city millions of dollars in liability from costly water main breaks. Hiring city employees to perform this work is the most efficient and cost-effective way to ensure the work is done efficiently and effectively.

Public Works Department Staffing Vacancies
In order to ensure there are no costly delays in the implementation of the city’s Utilities Undergrounding program, it is vital that the city have a sufficient number of highly skilled engineers and surveyors to provide contract oversight, design approval and required survey monument documentation. The FY20 budget should include an additional 8 FfEs for Land Surveying Assistants and 2 FTEs for Principal Survey Aides to begin addressing the backlog of undergrounding of utilities that has languished in the past year. The city should explore funding these positions through a pilot program with SDG&E over a period of five years with funds collected specifically for this purpose.

Climate Action Plan

Development of a Climate Action Plan (CAP) Five -Year Outlook
The FY20 budget should include sufficient funding to create a CAP Five-Year Forecast as an addendum to the Five-Year Financial Outlook, on an annual basis. An Outlook would offer the Mayor and Council a clear understanding of the actions and investments needed to hit the 2020 and 203 5 CAP targets.

Equity Division in the Sustainability Department
The CAP is intentioned to prioritize implementation in historically underserved communities most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. To ensure socially equitable implementation, the FY20 budget needs to include technical consulting services and increased staff capacity to access existing, available grant funds that are critical to support CAP implementation in communities of concern. New staff positions funded through this investment should comprise a new Equity Division within the Sustainability Department.
Estimated Cost: $500,000

Urban Forestry Staffing
Expand the city’s urban forestry staff by hiring two additional FTEs in FY20, one Code Enforcement Officer in Development Services, and one additional arborist/horticulturalist in the Streets Division of Transportation & Storm Water, to support full implementation of the Five­Year Urban Forest Management Plan and progress toward the CAP targets. Additionally, the FY20 budget should include $300,000 for planting 1,500 additional street trees, and a $500,000 increase in contracts for scheduled tree care.
Estimated Cost: $1 million

  • $800,000 (plantings and tree care)
  • $100,000 (Code Enforcement Officer)
  • $100,000 ( arborist/horticulturalist)

Zero Waste Management Implementation
In order to obtain a 75% diversion rate as cited in the Zero Waste Management Plan, the Environmental Services Department should consider increasing blue bin collection service from biweekly to weekly. The additional expense could be offset by the additional revenue generated by increasing the recycling rate. Additionally, the city should provide green waste collection service, particularly in communities south oflnterstate 8. To determine the feasibility of such a change, the city should fund a pilot study in the FY20 budget.

Library Budget

Protection of Current Hours and Service Levels
Community members rely on our libraries not just for access to books and reference materials, but also for critical activities like children’s reading programs, youth and aqult programming and community meetings. It is critical that the city maintain current hours and service levels at all libraries in FY20.

Programming Budget
The Library programming budget provides free educational and cultural programming to hundreds of thousands of people throughout the city. This programming budget should be expanded to ensure equal access for city residents across San Diego.
Estimated Cost: $400,000

Books and Materials Budget
Increasing a stagnant books and materials budget is also urgently needed to make sure each library keeps pace with circulation needs and allows for adequate access to books, electronic resources and databases. In order to be on par with other benchmarked library systems the books and materials budget should be increased in the FY20 budget.
Estimated Cost: $400,000

Technology Upgrades
Many technology devises used by our libraries are not supported by the Deptartment of IT and are nearing the end of their useful life. The FY20 budget should include a $200,000 line item for increased library IT, with the’ same investment continuing in future budgets.
Estimated Cost: $200,000

The safety and security of City of San Diego Librarians has become an issue that needs to be addressed immediately. Library employees throughout the city have been forced to take on duties far removed from their actual job, including homeless outreach, hazardous material cleanup, emergency medical assistance, mental health intervention and self-defense. In 2018 there were about 1,200 Library Department incident reports (written reports of threats, drug use, urination and other forms of misbehavior and illegal activity in a library), an increase of 50% over 201 Ts 800 incident reports. The FY20 budget must provide funding for additional security in branch libraries and significantly enhancing Downtown’s Central Library must be funded in the FY20 budget.

Police Department
Public safety remains a high budget priority. The following items should be considered for inclusion in the FY20 budget.

  • The city must continue to prioritize the recruitment and retention of police officers.Although the FY19 adopted budget allocated funding towards recruitment and retention efforts, and a salary increase for officers was recently approved, thus far this increased funding has not had a dramatic effect. As such, in FY20, the city should appropriate sufficient funding to conduct an in-depth analysis of attrition to determine how best to modify retention efforts and its recruiting program, including retention of a third-party contractor to anonymously survey sworn and civilian police employees on job satisfaction and organizational commitment and to conduct exit interviews when employees decide to leave. The information gathered through these interviews will provide valuable insight into how best to retain officers into the future.
  • Police Communications vacancy rates: There are high vacancy rates of safety dispatchers in the Police Department (14 vacancies as of 1/6/2019). The city has been using mandatory overtime to ensure continued staffing however, these conditions are discouraging to employees, resulting in many employees seeking better pay and benefits outside of the city. The pay and benefit disparity for these positions must be addressed in the FY20 budget.
  • Increased traffic enforcement along city streets adjacent to the Las Americas Premium outlets from November 27th to December 24th.
  • Funding for enforcement activity in the streets prohibited to truck traffic within the new Barrio Logan Truck Route.

Fire-Rescue Department

Fire Communications Vacancy Rates
There are high vacancy rates of safety dispatchers in the Fire-Rescue Department (15 as of
1/6/2019). The city has been using mandatory overtime to ensure continued staffing however, these conditions are discouraging to employees, resulting in many employees seeking better pay and benefits outside of the city. The pay and benefit disparity for these positions must be addressed in the FY20 budget.

Firefighter Death and Disability Benefits
The FY20 budget should prioritize and fund a death and disability benefit program for city fire fighters. Firefighters hired since July 2012 still do not have a city defined Death and Disability Benefit. The lack of this benefit is unacceptable and it should be created as soon as possible and funded in the FY20 budget.

Recruitment and Retention
The Fire-Rescue Department has had difficulty recruiting and retaining firefighters due to uncompetitive salary and benefits. An increase in pay and benefits should be considered in the FY20 budget.

Community Paramedics and Resource Access Program
Community Paramedicine is a model of community based healthcare designed to provide services more efficiently and at less cost. The program allows paramedics to function outside of the traditional emergency response and transport roles to help facilitate more appropriate use of emergency care resources while enhancing access to primary care for medically underserved populations. Two firefighter/paramedic FTEs are needed to run the program.
Estimated Cost: $238,000 (2 FTEs)

Lifeguard Division

Presumptive Illness Coverage for all Permanent San Diego Lifeguards
The San Diego Lifeguards are the only safety service agency in the city to not have these coverages under the California Labor code 3212.0 and 3212.1. The San Diego Lifeguards perform duties similar to Firefighters and Police but are not given the same protections under the California Labor Code. This goal was identified in the previous Lifeguard Division Five-Year Plan and should be included in the FY20 budget.

Staffing Increases

  • Addition of one year-round Lifeguard III for the Boating Safety Unit (BSU) in order to more effectively respond to emergency situations. Any combination of calls requiring 4-5 total guards leaves the BSU understaffed and the addition of this position will prevent that from happening.
    Estimated Cost: $277,406 (2 FTE)
  • Reclassification of one Clerical Assistant II into a Senior Management Analyst in an effort to decrease turnover and employ a more highly skilled employee.
    Estimated Cost: $57,272
  • Annual funding for 12 Swiftwater Rescue Auxiliary Lifeguards to attend annual training.
    Estimated Cost: $15,000

Parks & Recreation Department

Preservation of Current Hours and Service Levels
Community members rely on our parks and recreation centers for critical activities like adult and youth athletic leagues, youth and adult programming, senior programming, summer camps and community meetings, as well as enjoying passive activities within our many parks. It is critical that the city maintain current hours and service levels at all park and recreation centers in FY20.

Independent Rate Consultant
In 2017, the Council passed a resolution of intent that allows the IBA to retain the services of an independent rate consultant that can be utilized during Cost of Service Studies and associated reviews. If the IBA determines a need for these services in FY20, the FY20 PUD budget should provide the resources to retain the desired services.

Penny for the Arts
Currently, the IBA’s analysis of the Mayor’s 5-year Outlook shows FY19 funding for Penny for the Arts as a one-time expense for FY19. Without this funding the city will continue to fall short of the Blueprint’s stated funding goals. This means that for the next five years, Arts and Culture funding will continue to be millions of dollars short of the Blueprint’s commitment. Continuing arts funding in the FY20 budget to match FYI 9 levels would allow our arts and culture programming, a vital part of our economy, to continue to grow.
Estimated Cost: $3.9 million.


The following revenue opportunities should be explored to fund budget priority items outlined in this memorandum:

Excess Equity
The first quarter budget monitoring report projected $12.SM in excess equity at year end that could be used in the FY20 budget.

Public Liability Reserve
$2.6 million of FYI 9 excess Public Liability Reserve could be utilized for FY20 one-time needs.

Use of Redevelopment Property Tax Trust Fund (RPTTF) to Ensure Economic Revitalization and Job Creation
The Five-Year Outlook noted that the adjusted residual RPTIF revenue over the next five years increases from $21 million to $29.4 million, for a total of$127.7 million. Using this revenue going forward to invest in San Diego’s economically disadvantaged communities, as originally intended allows areas in the greatest need of economic investment an opportunity to attract new commercial activity, which in turn creates new jobs and greater tax revenue for the city’s general fund. The prioritized investment of these residual RPTTF funds could fund many capital projects across the city that currently do not have identified funding sources.

The city utilizes outside contractors for a variety of services totaling $240 million. The city should utilize the appropriate termination clause language within each contract to renegotiate the cost of each contract. A 10% overall reduction in contracts for outside services would provide the city with $24 million for more immediate General Fund purposes.

Annual Contract Increase Projection
The Five-Year Outlook reflects a 3 .9% annual increase in costs for contracts, which equals
$6.9M annually. A 1.95% reduction in the assumed increase could free up $3.45 million for use in the FY20 budget.
Thank you for your consideration of these priorities. This memo reflects my top priorities and will serve as the basis for my support of the upcoming budget.


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