Wednesday, December 2, 2015 - NEWS RELEASE
San Diego - As news breaks that his reforms to "repair the repair program" continue to show major improvements in managing City spending and completing neighborhood projects, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer today heralded the groundbreaking of the $15 million Old Otay Mesa Road Improvements Project, which will improve dangerous sections of the road for San Ysidro schoolchildren and families.
"Our tax dollars should be fixing our streets and improving our neighborhoods, not gathering dust in a bank account," Mayor Faulconer said. "These reforms will cut red tape so we can complete more neighborhood projects like Old Otay Mesa Road. We're completely changing the way the City prioritizes funding so that every community gets the neighborhood and infrastructure improvements they deserve."
For years, schoolchildren and other pedestrians walked along sections of a narrow dirt path to get to San Ysidro's elementary school, high school and other areas. Mayor Faulconer's reforms to streamline neighborhood improvement projects helped to fully fund construction at $9 million and total project budget at $15 million. The long-awaited community improvements - which includes widening and realigning the roadway, adding bike lanes, retaining walls and installing a sidewalk and guardrails- had faced years of funding shortfalls before the final $6 million was identified through the Mayor's reforms.
As Mayor Faulconer attended the groundbreaking, the City of San Diego Department of Financial Management released a report that shows nearly $75 million is now available for more than 60 other neighborhood projects due to new "repair the repair program" reforms proposed by the Mayor and approved by the City Council. The first Semi-Annual CIP Budget Monitoring Report describes the progress the City has made improving cash management in its multi-billion dollar Capital Improvement Project program. The report identifies projects that have excess cash that can be redistributed to other priority projects in need of funding, such as street repairs, parks and libraries.
City staff will request the City Council approve transferring savings from completed projects, projects that are under budget, projects that don't use a contingency set aside for cost overruns, and projects that do not require large amounts of cash until later fiscal years. The report is scheduled to be heard by the Infrastructure Committee on Dec. 8.
Improving the management of City funds is one of 20 reforms to the infrastructure program Mayor Faulconer introduced in March of this year. The reforms focus on technology to increase efficiency, reducing bureaucracy and providing better financial oversight so taxpayer dollars are used more effectively. Once fully implemented, projects like street repair will be completed 20 percent faster on average.
Other reforms implemented so far include online bidding for construction projects, a change that has helped reduce the contract procurement process for capital projects by three weeks, and tripling the size of contracts in order to hire contractors faster and allow projects to begin sooner.
CONTACT: Craig Gustafson at (619) 453-9880 or [email protected]