Amourence Lee · LIKE IT IS with MAYOR LEE
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  • Writer's pictureCouncilwoman Lee

2022-23 Strategic Planning

Every year our council adopts strategic plan through a 3-step deliberation process. This is one of the most important opportunities for community members to advocate - and shape which priorities are resourced and prioritized in the City.

On January 29th during our goal setting workshop, I proposed the following 12 priorities:

Stewardship of Infrastructure


  • Establish sustainable funding sources for maintenance and upgrades to the storm systems, including dredging the lagoon. (Marina-Lagoon Neighborhoods)

Environmental Sustainability:

  • *NEW* Study fiscal impact of adopting an environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) provision for our City’s investment policy. (Sierra Club)

  • *NEW* Study policies that increase access and encourage the development of urban agriculture in new construction, parks, streetscapes, empty lots, rooftops, and through school district partnerships, etc. (SMC Food System Alliance)

  • *NEW* Study landscaping water conservation policy that would tie renovations above $X for R1 & R2 (e.g. top 20% of permitted renovation budgets) to sustainable landscaping requirements, similar to the City’s sewer lateral conversation policy. For example, a permitted renovation budgeted at $350,000 could trigger a required $5,000 sustainable landscaping improvement to convert to drought-resistant/native plants, rain capture systems, etc.)

Framing the Future

Social Leadership

  • *UPDATE* Study campaign finance reform policies (League of Women Voters Initiative) including:

    • Creating a voluntary expenditure limit (VEL) program based on population with increases tied to CPI & building incentives for compliance such as waiving candidate filing fees and including special recognition for candidates who opt-in to the VEL in City-sponsored candidate profile in the local newspaper.

    • Creating a disclosure requirement for independent expenditures on digital and printed campaign materials modeled after Mountain View.

    • Improve language access for voter education initiatives (e.g. provide translation services at candidate forums and multilingual Get Out the Vote outreach initiatives.)

  • * NEW* Increase the number of members on the Parks & Recreation Commission from 5 to 7 members to create 2 designated youth seats for 18 to 25-year-old San Mateans. (Pursuant to the Charter, this action would require the adoption of an ordinance through a unanimous vote by council.)

  • Study feasibility and process to remove Commission eligibility requirement to be a “qualified elector.” (This may require a Charter amendment which could be timed with the clean-up ballot measure for district elections.)

Framing the Future

Strategic Planning

  • *UPDATE* Encourage housing production through partnerships with faith-based organizations and commercial landowners, as follows:

    • Set an affordable housing density bonus for land owned by faith-based organizations (e.g. a church with an adjacent lot) and similar properties and broaden the range of allowable zoning changes. (Rev. Ben Meyers, UUSM & Pastor Marlyn Bussey, St. James AME Zion)

    • Establish a minimum housing density for commercial zoning to streamline mixed-use development to yield more housing supply in the commercial districts and transit corridor.

Quality of Life

Public Health & Safety

  • *NEW* Strengthen AB1482 Tenant Protection Act by a) requiring permit approval for significant renovations to meet the standard for just-cause eviction; b) increase relocation fees from 1-month rent to 3 months to align with City’s current relocation fee policy for demolitions and condo conversions; c) requires first right to return at new rent price after renovation. (One San Mateo & Peninsula Solidarity Cohort)

Economic Vitality

Commercial/Retail Districts

  • *NEW* Increase education and resources to small businesses on ADA compliance. (DSMA, Chamber of Commerce, SAMCEDA)

  • *NEW* Open public bathroom downtown near Caltrain. (DSMA)

Financial Sustainability

  • *UPDATE* Increase revenue through Real Property Transfer Tax with tiered structure and affordable housing exemption.


On the March 7th Study Session, the second step of the process, council will comprehensively review all the proposed priorities and consider the organizational capacity required for implementation, such as additional resources, timeline, and the possible sources of funding. City Council may suggest modifications to the proposed objectives at this time. Then final approval and adoption of the plan is anticipated on March 21st.

DRAFT Plan with all 56 Council Objectives:

Att 1 - Draft Strategic Plan Fiscal Year 2022-23 (1)
Download PDF • 119KB

2022 Statistically Significant Community Survey:

Att 1 - 2022 Community Opinion Survey Report
Download PDF • 1.25MB

Mayor Rick Bonilla Presents the 2022 State of the City:


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