San Francisco has incredible views of the Bay from its many hilltops — just be careful not to look down.
Street cleanliness was “significantly” worse last fiscal year than the year before, according to a report from the Controller’s Office. The report said “worse” means there was an increased presence of feces, needles and broken glass on sidewalks. Yet the graffiti, trash receptacles and landscaping showed improvements.
Gloria Chen, spokeswoman for Public Works, said the department has had to do more with less.
“With any budget reduction and short field staff, you will see a noticeable difference,” she said.
The report acknowledged that the Department of Public Works’ budget was significantly cut, noting it lost 90 Jobs Now positions last year and that could have contributed to street conditions.
Chen said the cuts to personnel and the budget have played a role in the ability to address community needs immediately. However, one program that was reinstated last week hires and trains residents to walk busy streets, which could help improve scores in the next report.
“The quicker we can tackle something, the quicker the quality of life gets better,” Chen said.
The report was conducted in the last half of 2010 because the Controller’s Office and Department of Public Works concentrated on a different study in the first half of 2011 that could lead to changes in inspection standards.
The Street and Sidewalk Perception Study, released in May, found “that survey respondents generally perceived San Francisco’s streets and sidewalks to be acceptably clean, even in cases where the streets and sidewalks failed inspections based on the City’s maintenance standards.”