David Campos' New Rule: If City Agencies Screw Up a Contract, Don't Approve It

Supervisor David Campos

This week the Board of Supervisors approved two contracts that had been botched by the city, and only one man bothered to object. The only thing unusual about this is that one man bothered to object.

That was Supervisor David Campos, who, in one 20-minute stretch, took the mantle of “good government” farther than any other progressive has dared go.

“Even if there is no legal conflict, we should do a better job,” Campos said at the most recent Supes' meeting. “At some point we in the Board of Supervisors have to draw the line and tell city agencies, you do have to follow best practices.”

These contracts were openly acknowledged by the Supes to be as far from “best practice” as you can be without drugs.

One contract was to pay AECOM Water $26 million for construction management, without a competitive bidding process. It passed, with only Campos voting no, even though AECOM Water was part of a partnership that helped the city determine what its construction needs would be in the first place. That's a conflict of interest so big it needs therapy.

Another contract required retroactive authorization — for no good reason. Stratus Technologies has been performing work for the city since October. The only trouble is, the Supes were supposed to approve the contract for that work — and nobody asked them to. The Department of Technology extended Stratus' previous contract without consulting the Supes … and now, since that came to light, the Supes are being asked to, you know, approve everything so that it's nice and legal.

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