Mission Statement

To make Oakland an easy, efficient, prosperous, and resilient place to do business, and to reduce racial disparities and help all Oaklanders achieve economic security so that everyone has an opportunity to thrive.

Learn more about who we are and what we do here.




Good Jobs and Vibrant Economy

  • The transfer of the Special Activity Permits Division from the City Administrator's Office to the Department of Economic and Workforce Development will improve coordination with business development, workforce development, and cultural affairs and focus existing resources on equitable economic development. Specifically, this transfer reframes the Special Activity Permits Division from a nuisance abatement perspective to a facilitator of economic development. Altogether, this addition will support continued evolution of the cannabis equity program and facilitate similar efforts across other industries. Fiscal and administrative staff will be restored to the department to support the increased operations as a result of this transfer.
    • Equity Consideration: This enhancement will enable the division to build upon its existing equity work in the cannabis industry and apply it to other industries such as entertainment and mobile food vending. The reframing offers an opportunity to explore policies to reduce racial disparities in employment and business ownership across a range of businesses and activities.
  • Appropriates $75,000 to pay the property taxes of City-owned properties in the recently designated Chinatown Business Improvement District (BID). With this contribution from the City, it will support the planned economic development in this historic neighborhood. Once the Chinatown BID is formed, it will help to pay for special benefit maintenance, security, management, and physical improvements beyond those normally provided by the City.
    • Equity Consideration: The creation of Business Improvement Districts in neighborhoods supports the needs of the small business owner community in this designated zone and tends to enhance the overall vitality of the areas they serve. Oakland’s Chinatown is an important community hub, which have historically been underinvested. Once Chinatown’s BID forms, the City’s payment will become redistributed and thus will support Chinatown’s predominately Asian businesses, their employees, and property owners.
  • Restore a net 0.9 FTE positions. The Urban Economic Analyst, III restored through Council’s April 2021 budgetary action will remain funded in the Proposed Budget to lead economic development activities in East Oakland including business development, planning/zoning updates, catalytic site development and community development programs. This will mitigate the impact of freezing a vacant part-time Urban Economic Analyst IV.
    • Equity Consideration: The freezing of the part-time UEA IV, PPT will impact existing and potential new Business Improvement Districts, neighborhood partnerships and capacity-building with partners in Black, White, Asian, and other communities. The duties will be absorbed by existing staff.

Clean, Healthy, and Sustainable Neighborhoods

  • Allocate $448,731 in FY 2021-22 and $573,930 in FY 2022-23 for City sponsorship of Cultural Arts Grants and Fairs and Festivals. This funding depends on the transient occupancy tax from hotels and had to be removed entirely during Midcycle due to the pandemic. It has now been restored partially in FY 2021-22 and increased in FY 2022-23 to match projected revenues. The City’s sponsorship will support the Organizational Assistance Grants, Neighborhood Voices - Organizations and Neighborhood Voices Individual Artist programs and the costs of putting on community events. The Art + Soul festival will not be funded in this budget so that community-based organizations and events receive more of the available funding.
    • Equity Consideration: This restoration impacts Oakland’s ethnically diverse communities and neighborhoods, including historically underserved BIPOC communities, through providing increased City funding to support the costs of providing cultural programming through grants and community fairs and festivals.


Good Jobs and Vibrant Economy

  • Due to reduced WOIA grant revenues, $938,627 over two years will be reduced in Workforce service provider contracts. This reduction will diminish the availability of services and programs to access quality jobs, training, and education to adult and youth job seekers and workers.
    • Equity Consideration: There will be less funding available to serve BIPOC low wage workers and communities with the highest unemployment during this pandemic-induced recession. Service providers will be encouraged to search for external grants to offset the reduction.


Note: The FY 2021-23 Proposed Policy Budget proposes the transfer of the Special Activities Bureau from the City Administrator's department to the Economic & Workforce Development department. As such, the FY 2019-20 Actuals and FY 2020-21 Midcycle Budget for the Special Activities Division can be viewed on this page.

The following tables and charts reflect these changes. Upon approval of the FY 2021-23 Adopted Policy Budget, the FY 2019-20 Actuals and FY 2020-21 Midcycle Budget shall be reported within the City Administrator's budget accordingly.

Note: Adjust the column widths at header row to view complete table.


Expenditures By Fund

Expenditures By Category

Expenditures By Bureau/Division


Authorized Positions By Bureau