San Francisco, CA – Mayor London N. Breed today delivered the State of the City Address to set forth her top priorities for 2023, consisting of broad set of strategies to support the future of Downtown, advancing the City’s creation of more housing, safer neighborhoods, and renewed efforts to respond to the City’s fentanyl crisis. The Mayor also provided an update on the progress made to current challenges San Francisco is facing.
In her remarks, the Mayor focused on the opportunities and progress that lie ahead, despite the unprecedented challenges the City has faced since the COVID-19 pandemic started in 2020. She called for collaboration among City leaders to support and implement new strategies that will address ongoing challenges, including housing and the City’s economic recovery, and deliver results for San Franciscans.
“The last few years have been tough, we won’t solve all of San Francisco’s problems in a year, and we can’t fear trying new things. Because if we stand still, we fall behind. When we push forward, even if we stumble, we stumble forward,” said Mayor Breed. “I know we can overcome these challenges, in part because through four consecutive elections last year, our voters re-instilled every level of our government with a mandate to get the basics right, to put children before politics, to put results before posturing.”
The Mayor reinforced her public safety priorities, which are vital components to the City’s economic recovery. She commended the work of the San Francisco Police Department, despite critically low officer staffing levels and retention challenges, and expressed a continued need for increasing incentives to advance recruitment efforts and retain existing officers. Mayor Breed highlighted ongoing support for police alternatives, to include the expansion of Community and Welcome Ambassadors, in addition to the City’s Street Crisis Response Teams.
Mayor Breed also shared plans to introduce a $25 million budget supplemental later this month to help fund police overtime caused by the severe police staffing shortage. The supplemental will ensure that police officers are able to continue to respond to the basic needs and priority concerns while facing overtime challenges.
“Our residents are demanding we build back the police force, and we need to deliver. The push for full staffing has to be consistent and it has to be sustained... Because public safety isn’t only about taking care of our residents – it’s also taking care of our economy.”
Mayor Breed announced the Roadmap to Downtown San Francisco’s Future, a comprehensive plan that details ongoing and new strategies that set a new vision to reimagine Downtown’s economic recovery and role. The Mayor highlighted a once-in-a-generation opportunity to recruit new business sectors and companies to create a more diverse and resilient local economy.
“We have our challenges, but this isn’t an end to Downtown. The truth is, it won’t be any one. thing that ‘saves Downtown.’ It will have to be many things. Our city’s unemployment rate remains at 2%. Our airport was just named the best in the country. This City is ready to foster a spirit of success.”
The Mayor committed to reforming the City’s tax structure to make San Francisco more competitive and shared her plans to set forth new legislation, including protecting existing companies by pausing tax increases on San Francisco retail businesses, hotels, manufacturing sector, and arts and entertainment and attracting new businesses by offering tax breaks for three years for any company that comes to San Francisco.
During the State of the City Address, Mayor Breed spoke of the San Francisco’s need for more housing, a critical component to growing San Francisco’s workforce base and the economic recovery. Earlier this week, Mayor Breed rolled out her Housing for All Plan, which will advance a strategy to rework the City’s housing approvals and processes, and allow for 82,000 new homes over the next 8 years as part of the State’s Housing Element.
“To build the 82,000 homes the plan calls for, we need to approve and build homes three times faster than we did over the last decade. And that’s in a market where, right now, builders are struggling to make any project financially feasible.”
She committed to bringing new legislation and policy forward to remove unnecessary barriers and open up the City’s stalled pipeline of more than 52,000 units of approved housing.
The Mayor outlined other priorities for 2023, to include building on the momentum San Francisco’s parks and open spaces, supporting children and families, tackling climate change, providing world-class transportation, and delivering basic City services for San Franciscans more equitably, quickly, and efficiently.
The State of the City Address was held at Pier 70 in the atrium of San Francisco-based company Astranis, a satellite technology company working to connect people who lack reliable, affordable internet access. The company plans to bring hundreds of manufacturing jobs to San Francisco as they scale up their satellite production capabilities.