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Finance Intern At City of Palo Alto

Location: Palo Alto, California

Job Description

The Department
The mission of the Planning and Development Services is to provide effective implementation of land use development, planning, housing and environmental policies, and efficient processing of building permit applications that maintain and enhance the City as a safe, vital, and attractive community. In fulfilling our mission, the department charges fees for service. These fees have to be processed, accounted for and analyzed to ensure the department generates revenue to offset costs.

The Position
The Finance Intern will work on a variety of cashing handling, financial analysis, and audit projects to help ensure cost neutrality of department operations. This is a terrific opportunity for an individual interested in local government finance, accounting, or budget related activities. The Department will match the intern's strength and abilities with the scope of the project(s).

There is an acute need to develop best practices for the Department's "Cost Recovery Program." Under this program, the Department completes entitlement work with the aid of third-party consultants. Organizing the program files, ensuring the files are error free, and developing systematic improvements to ensure the program is audit-ready are top priorities.

The Ideal Candidate
The ideal candidate would be an undergraduate or graduate student who is interested in local government finance. The candidate should be able to work independently, have experience with Microsoft Excel, think analytically, and able to communicate clearly with regards to any findings or recommendations. Attention to detail is essential for this position.

Essential Duties

Essential and other important responsibilities and duties may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • In-taking revenues, tracking and filing revenues, identifying costs, tracking and filing costs, and balancing revenues and costs overall, or construction project site specific.
  • The intern will use software programs such as Microsoft Excel, SharePoint, and SAP.
  • The intern will learn government budgeting, accounting, and finance.
  • Opportunities also exist for the intern to learn about land use planning/construction project management through desk shadowing of staff at the Development Center and about construction regulation through ride-a longs with building inspectors.


This is a non-benefited position.