Richard Berkson

Berkson Associates Provides Policy Planning, Analysis and Forecasting

Berkson Associates specializes in fiscal, financial and economic evaluation to improve California city and special district plans, programs and land use policy. Tools include budget planning, financial benchmarking, cost management, economic development and revenue generating strategies. Futurist forecasting scenarios provide a foundation for strategic management to improve service delivery and organization.

Selected reports

Cover of Contra Costa MSR Update

Financial Assessment Provided by Berkson Associates for Contra Costa Cities and Special Districts MSR

Berkson Associates, as a subconsultant, updated municipal service reviews for 19 cities and four special districts in Contra Costa County. The fiscal and financial analysis analysis reviewed Annual Financial Reports and budgets for all agencies. Fiscal indicators derived from a number of sources helped to flag any negative fiscal conditions and trends affecting the agencies, resulting in SOI recommendations. The project was completed in June, 2019.

Page from Assessment of CSJC Utility Systems

Fiscal Assessment of Utility Systems Helps Decide Future Consolidation

Orange County LAFCO commissioned a Municipal Service Review (MSR) focusing on the potential transfer of the operations and facilities of San Juan Capistrano's water and wastewater utility to another public agency. Berkson Associates prepared a fiscal assessment of the utility systems. The MSR will serve as the foundation for a review and analysis of any plan for service and application submitted by an agency.

Report Cover - San Anselmo Economic Development Plan

BA Prepares Economic Development Plan & Strategies

This Economic Development Plan provides direction to residents, merchants and community leaders to improve San Anselmo's economy and attract the types of businesses that will benefit the community. The document describes a range of actions that can help address business constraints and enhance the Town's strengths through public services and programs, community marketing efforts, and physical improvements.

GOVERNANCE

HOW CAN PUBLIC SERVICES BE PROVIDED MORE EFFECTIVELY THROUGH REORGANIZATION, INTERGOVERNMENTAL COOPERATION OR TAX SHARING?

Municipal Service Reviews and Special Studies

Annexation and Tax Sharing

Incorporation, District Formation & Governance Options

FISCAL

WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF LAND USE DECISIONS, PUBLIC POLICIES AND ECONOMIC TRENDS ON PUBLIC BUDGETS AND SERVICES?

Development Impacts on Public Services, Costs and Revenues

Public Revenue Projections

Asset Management Policies and Programs

Economic Development

PUBLIC FINANCE

HOW CAN PUBLIC FACILITY IMPROVEMENTS BY EFFICIENTLY FUNDED?

Finance Plans and Impact Fees

MARKET/FINANCIAL

WHAT FACTORS AND TRENDS INFLUENCE PROJECT FEASIBILITY?

Market Studies and Pro Forma Analysis

Richard Berkson
Richard Berkson,
Principal of Berkson Associates, believes that sound policies and strategies require careful consideration of causality, creative problem solving, and incentive-based solutions. His practice is founded on 30+ years of experience providing clear and concise fiscal and financial analysis. His approach is based on a solid understanding of local government organization (e.g., formation, annexation, and consolidation), capital improvement policy and programming, and urban economics (demographics, market & financial analysis).

Mr. Berkson was a founding partner of Economic and Planning Systems (EPS) and principal of EPS for over 32 years before forming Berkson Associates. He graduated from the Goldman School at UC Berkeley with a Masters Degree in Public Policy after studying at MIT and UC Berkeley as an undergraduate. He is an associate member of CALAFCO and has been active in the organization for several years. In his spare time he enjoys painting and microfarming, and holds a patent as inventor of a composting device.