Campaign trail: Leno, Kim issue joint endorsement ad

By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt

For the first time in history, two major San Francisco mayoral candidates are running a serious, all-out ranked-choice voting strategy—and the outcome of the election will test whether that system works.

In a press conference this morning, and a newly released ad, the two candidates appeared together to call for a fundamental change at City Hall….

“This is an historic moment,” Kim said. “We need to stand together if we believe in change.”…

It’s no secret that RCV could determine the next mayor; in fact, it’s likely that the second-place votes of the third-place candidate will decide the election…(more)

This is not the first time this strategy was tried. The 1-2-3 concept was introduced at a cakewalk at City Hall in 2015. And we have the video to prove it.

Joining ranks is a no-brainer in the world of ranked choice voting. Look at the number of dual endorsements. It is important to choose at least two if not three candidates. To better understand how ranked choice voting works and why teaming up makes sense, watch this video from ABC 7 News: San Francisco has been using ranked choice voting since 2004. Here’s how it works.

 

This campaign has brought out some important information, raised good questions, stretched the candidates in new ways, and introduced us to some new ideas that we hope will inform the next Mayor, regardless of who that is. Pretty much everyone agrees on the goals. They just differ in their methods to reach them. May the best candidate win!

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The myth of long-term housing “underproduction”

By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt

Mission-Bay-at-Third

New Mission Bay condos on Third Street next to the T-Line near the ballpark, by zrants

Has California—and SF—failed to build housing for the past 50 years? The data show otherwise

In an interview with Phil Matier on CBS April 1, State Sen. Scott Wiener repeated a line I’ve heard from him, and from many others in politics and the news media, over and over:

“There’s a reason we don’t build much housing,” he said, “and it’s been that way for 50 years.”

This is one of the central pieces of the housing market mythology that defines the debate over SB 827 and the larger question of development policy in the city, the region, and the state.

And when you look at the actual facts, it doesn’t seem to hold up…

Here’s how Fernando Marti, co-director of the Council of Community Housing Organizations, puts it:…

What the data shows is that, while the rate of production generally tracked population growth, often faster, it crashed in 2008, and even with the booming economy, it hasn’t come back. The sooner we start understanding what’s really been happening since 2008, rather than blaming a fictitious “50 years of underproduction,” the sooner we can get to real solutions that matter.. (more)

City Hall firebrand Larry Bush quits Ethics group after leading quarter century of reforms

By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez: sfexamminer – excerpt

Larry Bush, 72, who helped create the San Francisco Ethics Commission and guided numerous ethics reforms since the 1990s, is calling it quits…

The trailblazer of ethical derring-do announced his resignation from the citizen group he co-founded in 2010, Friends of Ethics, in a lament-laden email blasted with fire from the fingertips following a joint Board of Supervisors and Ethics Commission meeting. It was such a grand, spectacular failure that it surely caused some city policy wonks to weep…

The two bodies were poised to pass a sweeping package of ethics reforms April 3, intending to shine light on housing developers seeking to influence politicians to pass their projects, speed up the revelation of big-money backers funding local Super PACs, disclose money behind social media political campaigns and curtail you-scratch-my-back-and-I’ll-scratch-yours favors for politicians in the form of “behested payments” to pet causes…

The effort did not completely fail, and portions of it will be revisited at a further Ethics Commission meeting.

However, none of those reforms will come in time to root out political favors in this mayoral election, as they would have, had they been considered two years ago when supervisors Aaron Peskin and Jane Kim, who offered different elements of the package, first proposed them… (more)

RELATED:
Ethics chair resigns over failure to place campaign finance reforms on June ballot

We don’t need to destroy the Sunset to save San Francisco

By Jane Kim : medium – excerpt

State politicians have been rushing forward a “transit oriented” housing proposal that will allow virtually unlimited construction of luxury condos throughout San Francisco.

The proposal is Senate Bill 827 (SB 827) and it allows developers to build up to 8 stories of luxury housing in areas that meet “minimum levels of transit service.” 96% of San Francisco’s parcels, including the Sunset, Richmond, Excelsior and Chinatown meet this standard. And the proposal upzones our entire City without increasing developer contribution to transit, parks, schools or other services critical to sustaining our neighborhoods. This is not how we build housing or grow livable cities…

Meanwhile, the cities who refuse to invest in public transit aren’t required to build any new housing. In fact, SB 827 rewards bad actors who refuse to build public transit or housing — sorely needed throughout the region. The Sierra Club California opposes this “pro-environment” bill writing, “While infill development near transit is the most desirable option, we believe that [SB 827] is a heavy-handed approach to encourage development that will ultimately lead to less transit being offered and more pollution generated, among other unintended consequences.”…

This plan is a failure. We can build more housing without destroying our neighborhoods...(more)

 

SF mayoral hopefuls, minus Breed, hold heated housing debate

One candidate in the San Francisco mayor’s race wants to shake out the pockets of real estate developers. Another wants to sue speculators who he said are putting people out on the street. A third called for a rigorous analysis of the city’s housing stock… (more)

The mayoral candidates have some good ideas to share. Let’s hope that whoever wins, these ideas are considered for development. Please comment on the source if you can.

Ethics, supes in showdown over reforms

By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt

Can we reform local politics in a Citizens United era? Or will some reforms just make things worse?

The San Francisco Ethics Commission could be facing a showdown with the Board of Supes in the next two weeks over a detailed, complex set of changes to the city’s campaign rules that board members first reviewed last week – but that the commission could put on the ballot without changes Feb. 16.

The commission in November, after months of discussion, sent a package to the board that finally got a hearing in the Budget and Finance Committee last week…

And the way the City Charter works, the supes can either adopt the rules pretty much as they are – or the Ethics Commission can vote Feb. 16 to place the measure on the June 5 ballot.

“The commission has put the board in a tough spot,” Peskin said. “It’s hard to get this right in a handful of days.”…(more)

As I noted earlier, the major public opposition to the Ethic’s Commission bill came from the big non-profits connected to the development community. This bills will win or lose based on the emotional appeal of the concept. Voters will not be reading the fine print on this one.

The first salvo in the mayor’s race is a superPAC attack ad

By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt

Anonymous (so far) Breed supporters go after Leno for Farrell vote in what could be a sign of unlimited money flooding the race

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