While Mayor Lee introduced for approval the largest San Francisco budget to date — $9.6 billion — at the end of last month, more privately, city officials are making contingency plans for falling markets. Bloomberg reports that municipal officials are at work on an "economic resiliency plan" to avoid, for example, a situation like the one where, in 2010, a projected $460 million shortfall led to 1,600 job cuts and reductions in spending on crucial public services.
As Lee put it: “The impacts of the last economic downturn resulted in near double-digit unemployment with thousands of residents out of work and our small businesses left struggling... We must not take for granted the vibrancy of our economy. Now is the time to plan ahead.”
Todd Rufo, director of the San Francisco Office of Economic and Workforce Development, added that, "We haven’t forgotten what 2008 was like and that’s why we want to be as prepared as we can be.” In his words to Bloomberg, “There are things that you need to do to prepare your house so it doesn’t fall down."
Moody's analytics senior economist Dan White appears to applaud the effort, which isn't just rare among cities: It's unheard of. “I haven’t seen many cities or counties focusing on this, especially from a stress-testing perspective, which scares me a little bit,” White told Bloomberg. “Cities, states and all manner of local governments should absolutely be preparing themselves for a downturn.”
San Francisco's economic resiliency plan is due to be released in about eight months. So, yeah, the tech economy should be good till then, right?