Mayor Newsom Announces Recommendations Of CBO Taskforce To Strengthen Accountability, Improve Service Delivery Of City’s Nonprofit Partners
1/7/2011- Mayor Gavin Newsom today announced the recommendations made by the Community-Based Organizations (CBO) Task Force to strengthen the partnership between the City and the CBO partners. The 56-member task force issued a report that highlights plans on what the City and County of San Francisco could do to be more strategic in its partnership with local CBOs to articulate a vision for service delivery and establish a clear accountability framework.
“Community and nonprofit organizations are on the frontlines of delivering vital city services, but we can do more to build stronger partnerships and improve outcomes and accountability,” said Mayor Newsom. “The recommendations of the CBO Task Force represent another step forward in strengthening the delivery of essential services to our City’s most vulnerable residents in difficult economic times.”
The CBO Task Force was created to better understand the critical role CBOs play in delivering City-funded services to vulnerable residents. In recognition of this role, Mayor Newsom and the Board of Supervisors convened nonprofit and City leaders to make recommendations to strengthen the relationship between the City and CBOs. As the City and CBOs continue to face unprecedented declines in state and federal revenues, strategic dialogue aimed at meeting challenges together has never been more important. The City’s commitment to moving forward with the CBO Task Force recommendations recognizes the vital role CBOs play in the delivery of public services.
“The CBOs Task Force has brought non-profit and City leaders together in order to promote more effective communication, identify improved accountability processes, and build capacity,” said Barbara Garcia, Director of the Department of Public Health and Chair of the Task Force. “This group undertook important work based on a shared understanding of the need to protect vital services at a time when budgets and funding are facing deep cuts. We all have an important role to play to ensure that this important service delivery system is strengthened and continues to be a strong partner with the City.”
The CBO Task Force response planning process was designed to engage nonprofit and City leaders in identifying solutions to current challenges. Criteria were established early on to ensure broad and diverse participation from nonprofits and included: CBOs representing nonprofit membership associations; CBOs representing diverse populations (e.g., age, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation) and priority neighborhoods; and CBOs of varying sizes. City staff from departments that procure CBO services also participated. Participants met over a four-month period and developed recommendations regarding: 1) strategic communication aimed at strengthening the nature of interactions between the City and its CBO contractors; 2) accountability directed towards improving coordination and oversight across City Departments; and 3) capacity building strategies for CBOs.
The Joint Planning Group endorsed a standardized Corrective Action Policy developed by the Controller’s Office and City Departments. Key elements of this policy include:
· City Departments should incorporate a Corrective Action Plan into their monitoring process;
· City Departments are responsible for providing risk-based monitoring and oversight to nonprofits in receipt of their funding and documenting the results;
· Performance and monitoring standards as well as reporting deadlines should be clear and reasonable in all City grants and contracts;
· City Departments should consider technical assistance and dialogue with nonprofit leadership, including boards of directors, to make progress on corrective action;
· City Departments must designate “elevated concern status” when a nonprofit has not, in a timely fashion, responded to the request for corrective action, provided a corrective action plan that is acceptable to the department(s), or complied with the implementation of their corrective action plan;
· “Red flag status” is initiated by a City department/division head and occurs when a CBO is a critical service provider at imminent risk of being unable to perform services per their agreement, or is unable or unwilling to engage in required corrective action;
· A nonprofit remains on elevated concern or red flag status until providing a satisfactory corrective action plan and fully implementing it, or partially implementing the plan to the satisfaction of the City;
· The Controller’s Office will maintain a list of nonprofits with elevated concern and red flag status and share it with City departments and decision-makers; and
· Departments are responsible for ensuring that nonprofits that have elevated concern or red flag status due to fiscal and compliance issues do not receive additional City funding.
In recognition of the importance of CBOs to City service delivery, City Departments will continue to convene members of the planning group to discuss progress made on the recommendations outlined in the report. The full CBO Task Force report and recommendations can be found at http://18.104.22.168/policy-finance/.