Mayor Todd Gloria

City of San Diego |

Maintain strong reserves across City operations

The City’s Reserve Policy (Council Policy 100-20) documents the approach to establishing and maintaining reserves to effectively manage economic downturns and other external forces that are not in the City’s control.

Before fiscal year 2014, the General Fund Reserve policy target was 8 percent of General Fund revenue. Beginning that fiscal year, the revised policy segmented the fund with the creation of the General Fund Emergency Reserve and the General Fund Stability Reserve. In February 2017, the City Council approved amendments to Reserve Policy to extend the funding schedule to achieve the 16.7 percent policy goal for the General Fund Reserve by Fiscal Year 2025. Prior to these amendments, the policy goal was to be achieved in Fiscal Year 2021. Total General Fund Reserves consist of the total of the Emergency Reserve and the Stability Reserve. The Emergency Reserve shall be set at a target level of 8.0 percent, and the Stability Reserve shall be set at a target level of 8.7 percent.

Reserves as a percentage of General Fund revenues by fiscal year

Sources: City of San Diego Financial Management Department

Build national and international partnerships

In an increasingly integrated world economy, strategic global economic engagement is crucial to San Diego’s sustained economic competitiveness. To achieve this, San Diego is focused on creating jobs, increasing competitiveness, and boosting the region’s global identity, all of which require a collaborative approach between government, industry, community groups, and academic partners.

The City of San Diego maintains over 100 partnerships with cities and other local governments, international partner organizations representing a variety of diverse ethnicities, professional associations, and other entities like The Brookings Institution and JPMorgan Chase who help support economic development.

Governments and organizations with which the City of San Diego has a partnership

Sources: City of San Diego Economic Development Department; Neighborhood Services Branch; and the Office of the Mayor

Increase business growth and value in the traded sectors

The City’s economic development efforts include promoting job creation and retention, keeping our economy strong and diversified as it grows, and increasing the size of the local tax base.

A successful economic development strategy focuses on industries that produce goods and services sold outside of San Diego because those industries - known as economic base industries - create jobs and wealth for the region. Military, tourism, international trade and logistics, and innovation and manufacturing are four of San Diego’s major economic base industries.

70.9 billion

Business value in traded sectors

in 2017

Sources: Bureau of Economic Analysis; City of San Diego Economic Development Department

Increase outreach efforts to diverse business sectors

Keeping businesses in San Diego and attracting new businesses in key economic base industries are purposes of the City’s Business Expansion, Attraction and Retention (BEAR) program.

A business has many options when choosing a location. Aggressive competition from cities in other states and economic pressures can prevent a company from choosing San Diego. Proactive engagement by local leaders reduces uncertainty and makes our city a more attractive location. The City has helped companies navigate local permitting and land-use regulations, market themselves in the region, and develop strong bonds with existing companies as well as improved local regulations that may be a barrier for new businesses.

Businesses assisted through BEAR by fiscal year

Source: City of San Diego Economic Development Department.
From 2015 to 2016, there was a change in the data reporting methodology. Beginning in 2016, only direct engagement by EDD staff is counted; other activities, such as businesses that attended an EDD-facilitated event, are no longer counted.

Contracts awarded to Small Local Business Enterprises (SLBEs)

Source: City of San Diego Purchasing & Contracting Department

Increase the number and/or value of companies that are exporting

San Diego earns money through export of goods and services. Some of our highest-value goods have been developed as a result of the region’s robust research and development activities at UC San Diego, private research institutions and local incubators.


San Diego businesses

exporting in 2015

20.1 billion

Value of San Diego

exported products in 2018

Sources: City of San Diego Economic Development Department