Well, not this year’s budget, but it’s a start.

We’ve just spat up our coffee all over SFGTV‘s live feed: there’s movement afoot to somewhat radically change the city’s oh-so-fun budget process, making the annual “oh it’s January again, time to cut” routine into a two-year affair — and it’s supported by (we can’t believe it either) both the Mayor and the President of the Board of Supervisors.

Somewhere, Aaron Peskin must be spinning in his shorts.

Board President David Chiu has asked the City Attorney to draft a charter amendment — essentially the strongest action a supervisor can make, aside from tackling mayoral spokespeople in the hallway or making appointments while the real big dog is out of town — that would redefine the city’s budget process thusly:

  • Establish a two-year budget process and mid-cycle correction process.
  • Establish a five-year financial plan to inform a two-year budget.
  • Establish formal financial policies and an approach to meeting them over upcoming budget cycles.

The measure has the support of the Mayor, two of the Mayor’s best buddies on the board, and all the progressives save one.

We’ll have to wait to see exactly what the language is — this beast is now in the hands of the City Attorney and Controller, and we’ll have to wait even longer to see it in action: charter amendments are when we the people are involved in the great legislative process, as it’s we the people who get to vote on them in off-year elections. But it’s a start, we think. Now all’s we have to do is wait until the current budget crunch is solved. No biggie.

In other action:

Thinking of the Children: Supervisor Eric Mar has called for a hearing asking what happens to small children when their parents/legal guardians are evicted from their homes. We guess they also get evicted, but we’ll wait for the hearing.

Supervisor Bevan Dufty asked that bingo laws be relaxed, allowing for prizes of up to $500. $500? Shit, see you at the bingo hall.

RIP: Board members asked the meeting be adjourned in honor of two recently-deceased: Len Harrison, the father of indie journalist Josh Wolf, and Sandra Cantu, the 8-year old Tracy girl whose body was discovered Monday. Mahalo.