- Accountability [✜]
I haven't run across the Mayor's Citywide Performance Reporting system before. Its a neat idea - the system monitors the performance of City government overall and agency by agency (and given the Mayor's wonkery and geek background, I'm sure this a exercise near and dear to his heart).
Overall, we're doing pretty well. Citywide, 53% of the performance indicators are improving or stable, while just under 26% are declining. As you'll see in the screen cap above, one of the agencies dragging down the curve is DOB. Granted, DOB has a 50.0% improving/stable rate. But it also has 50.1% (must be rounding error) of its performance indicators on the decline.
The breakdown of the performance numbers is not flattering, either. In the fiscal year to date, the number of construction-related injuries is up over 21%. Fatalities, happily, are down to 9 from 12 (though its not clear if this data predates recent fatalities). Another area where the agency shows "improvement" is in the issuance of violations for after hours work. For the current fiscal year, the agency is issuing violations in 6% of inspections, up from only 1% last year. Tellingly, the report does not indicate the number of complaints for after hours work (a number is included for most other complaint categories). Nor does it list a percentage of complaints inspected on the same day the complaint was made (which is the real problem - its hard to issue a violation for Sunday work when you inspect the complaint on a Monday).
On the heels of yesterday's announcement that DOB will be bringing added scrutiny to self-certified applications, the CPR report indicates that the percentage of agency audits of self-certified apps is actually down, albeit very slightly. On the plus side, the percentage of audits that have resulted in revocation notices is up fairly substantially.
 Its not clear that "improving" is necessarily a good thing. If I earned a D last year and a C this year, that is an improvement. But it is still a pretty poor grade. Likewise, a drop from an A+ to an A is not necessarily a sign of failure.↩
 See note 1. This is not an improvement, its just slightly less pathetic.↩