San Francisco leases need full disclosure of costs

Last year, San Francisco officials decided to make city buildings more environmentally friendly. Mayor Ed Lee introduced legislation requiring any facilities leased by The City to meet LEED Gold requirements. The entire Board of Supervisors approved the plan.

The potential downside of this legislation became apparent when The City negotiated new facility leases for Muni and the Department of the Environment. Both deals attracted scrutiny from supervisors for their respective price tags. And it turns out that both leases include the cost of upgrades designed to help the facilities meet LEED Gold requirements.

Making municipal buildings environmentally friendly is a worthy goal. New city-owned buildings should be constructed in the most environmentally friendly manner. Upfront investment in the newest construction technology can help lower future energy costs and decrease The City’s carbon footprint.

But the wisdom of applying such a policy to leased buildings is far less clear. One issue stems from a lack of clarity about how much it costs The City to upgrade leased facilities to meet these requirements. Such costs are typically folded into the overall price of the lease, making it difficult to suss out the details.

City officials should reconsider whether The City and County should be on the hook to rehab every building it leases. At the very least, the costs of such environmental upgrades should be considered separately from the price of the lease, so officials will have a clear understanding of what this requirement is costing The City.

editorialsOpinion

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

A sign about proposed development of the bluff at Thornton State Beach in Daly City on Friday, Feb. 26, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Retreat center proposed at popular state beach

Daly City residents oppose construction on ocean bluffs

Rev. Roland Gordon shows “The Great Cloud of Witnesses” collage mural at the Ingleside Presbyterian Church, which he began building in 1980.<ins> (</ins>
Rev. Roland Gordon preaches love in action

Pastor promotes peace, hope through art and prayer

Basketball (Shutterstock)
SI alum Begovich gets his moment, but Stanford falls on Senior Day

MAPLES PAVILION — Generally speaking, Stanford’s home finale on Saturday afternoon, a… Continue reading

U.S. Attorney David Anderson announces federal firearms charges against two men for their roles in a March 2019 shooting outside the Fillmore Heritage Center in a news conference alongside SFPD staff at the Phillip Burton Federal Building on Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Departing U.S. attorney predicts corruption probe will continue

David Anderson shook up City Hall as top federal prosecutor

Board of Supervisors President Shamann Walton, a former school board member, has been asked to help secure an agreement between the school district and teacher’s union. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
 <ins></ins>
Supervisor Walton tapped to mediate teacher contract talks

District and union at odds over hours in-person students should be in the classroom

Most Read