Transit, Vision Zero, Livable Streets, and other Highlights of the “Focus on the Future” Conference

: streetsblog – excerpt

hat if San Francisco becomes the next Detroit?” asked Jonathan Miranda, Director of Strategy at Salesforce.com, during a keynote speech this morning at the “Focus on the Future” conference in downtown San Francisco. Given the region’s meteoric growth, that may seem far fetched–but no more so than Detroit’s fall after the booming years of the auto industry. He said that given San Francisco’s inability to build sufficient housing, that’s a real possibility. “Companies are moving to Austin, Denver, Seattle–what happens if software and Silicon Valley start looking for a different place?”

Miranda’s warning was part of a theme at the conference about how important it is for the Bay Area to address issues such as housing costs, transportation, and the safety and livability of our streets. The conference is run by the “Self-Help Coalition,” an organization of 24 different California transportation authorities and government organizations which share planning and policy intel. The event also featured tours of the Central Subway, the Transbay Transit Center, and a discussion of the Better Market Street plan. (more)

GENTRIFICATION is the word that is making the rounds these days to describe the economic disparity that is plaguing the nation. Pretty much everyone is concerned about it but no one is attempting to solve the problem of extreme cost of living increases that are exasperating the homeless crisis and causing much of the stress in our cities.

GROWTH has limits and inviting disruptive high tech industries to experiment with our society is exacerbating the conflicts between the top and bottom levels of society as everyone scrambles for empty units like empty seats in a game of musical chairs.

DISRUPTION is not a game to be taken lightly, but, it is the new tech mantra that is being sold to cities that want to partake in the technology revolution. Citizens get no say in the matter and many are unaware that they are being sacrificed on the corporate alter of progress until it is too late.

COMPANY TOWN is the title of a movie that Investigates Tech Industry’s impact on tow of SF’s most vulnerable neighborhoods. There is a new attempt to mitigate some of the housing crisis by creating “company towns” that include housing on the corporate campus to alleviate some of the housing crunch.

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Kim packs housing forum as former LA mayor hints at gov run

By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt – (video link)

Small protest features tents in a sign that Wiener supporters are using homeless people as a wedge issue

The Mission High School auditorium is a big venue, room for more than 1,000 people, and it was packed last night for an event featuring Sup. Jane Kim, former LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, and BART Board candidate Lateefa Simon talking about housing and transportation policy.

It was part of the Jane Kim for state Senate campaign; Kim sent out mailers promoting the event and her team worked every possible social media angle to get people out…

Kim talked at some length about housing and homelessness, and while there wasn’t anything new that she hadn’t said before, she got a rousing reception.

This is part of her political strategy – to use events to get the word out and increase enthusiasm. “We know we are going to be outspent,” Eric Jaye, her campaign manager, told me. “So we need 1,000 people to each tell ten people why they are supporting Jane.”

It’s something that Dean Preston, who is running against incumbent Sup. London Breed, has also been doing. He’s been holding workshops on housing issues, attracting large numbers of tenants who are worried about staying in their homes…

So the campaigns are heating up even before Labor Day. And from the way Wiener’s folks are acting, it’s just going to get more ugly… (more)

Jane gets in a lot of her issues on a regular basis no matter what the subject matter is. She covers Prop X to keep the arts and at risk jobs in the city, the temporary housing, disparate charges for corporations and the public. There is a link to the video and a little transcript of some of Janes’ comments that relate to transportation are below.

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Candidate for Supervisor Proposes New Mission District BART Station

By : missionlocal – excerpt

A new BART station and thousands of units of housing may transform the area of the Mission District south of Cesar Chavez Street, if a candidate for District Nine supervisor has his way.

Josh Arce, a community liaison for laborers union Local 261 running to replace Supervisor David Campos, laid out plans on Thursday to replace the Safeway and its parking lot at 30th and Mission streets with a new BART station, and to develop dozens of parcels in the area to increase the neighborhood’s housing supply by 2,000 units.

The development, part of a proposed “Mission Street South of Cesar Chavez” plan, would “not touch any existing housing,” Arce said. The housing built would be a mix of market-rate projects and affordable housing.

“There’s never really been a plan for this neighborhood,” he added, standing with some 20 supporters in the Safeway parking lot at 3350 Mission St. where the new station would go. The Safeway itself could be incorporated into the new station, Arce said, or a new store could be built elsewhere…

Arce’s plan parallels that of one of his opponents, Hillary Ronen, who is also running for District Nine supervisor and currently serves as chief of staff for Supervisor Campos. Ronen announced in January her intention to build 5,000 affordable housing units in the Mission District in the next decade, saying she would develop empty lots and raise heights to accomplish the feat.

The Mission District has seen no new units of affordable housing constructed in the last decade and just 455 units approved across four sites for the next four years. Those will be joined by a couple hundred more once funds from the housing bond passed last November are disbursed, but that would still be a fraction of the total Ronen has pledged for her term in office... (more)

Who needs food when you can BART? Can we find a politician who cares what the residents in the neighborhood want to do, instead of demanding we follow their plans to change our lives? How about if we just slow down the pace of change and allow everyone to catch up before running off on a new tangent?

 

Look for a wild supes meeting tomorrow

By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt

Who will stand up to the cops? Who will stand up to the mayor? Who is for higher taxes on mansions? Key votes will put the members on record

It’s going to be a week of fireworks at the Board of Supes: The city budget is up Tuesday/19, as are a series of ballot measures, including some that had to be called out of committee last week because the six-vote progressive majority on the board has been undermined by the conservative committee appointments of President London Breed.

Most of the work on the budget happens in committee, and that process is over. There is always some jockeying around last-minute cuts and additions (or “add backs”) but the big issue this week, which will overshadow the rest of the discussion, is a plan by Sup. John Avalos to put part of the Police Department budget on reserve pending demonstrable reforms…

Then there’s almost every ballot measure that’s still hanging.

Among the key votes: Sups. Scott Wiener and Mark Farrell want to increase the sales tax in the city by a total of .75 percent to pay for transportation and homeless services (if this passes, the city’s sales tax would be more than 9 percent).

That dynamic duo also has a measure to criminalize homelessness – and the progressives aren’t happy about it…

Sup. Jane Kim’s measure to increase the transfer tax on the sale of properties that go for $5 million or more is also before the board, and while she got a solid majority for the concept of free city college, which this would pay for, the supes still have to approve the tax plan. She’s got six sponsors, so it will go on the ballot.

Sup. Norman Yee wants to give the board some power to appoint members of the agency that oversees Muni; the mayor doesn’t like that, but it’s going to be popular with the voters...(more)

 

 

 

 

The Agenda, July 11-17: Why bad committee appointments matter …

by Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt

… and the crazy period of budget approvals and deciding what goes on the November ballot

Pretty much everyone agrees that elected officials should be judged on their records in office, and typically that means legislation introduced, votes on difficult issues, and success in setting a political agenda and making it happen.

But there’s more to it than that. The record should also include things like endorsements – who are you helping, promoting, empowering? – and decisions on appointments.

For the president of the Board of Supervisors, that includes appointments to board committees.

Most of the time this is insider stuff – do you really care who is vice chair of the Rules Committee? – but it matters. Sometimes, it matters a lot…

It’s going to be a crazy two weeks, as the supes both finalize the budget and figure out what’s going on the November ballot…

Then on Wednesday/13, the Budget and Finance Committee will consider a plan by the same three – the mayor, Wiener, and Farrell – to increase the sales tax by a total of 1.25 percent to pay for those services.

That’s already cooked into the budget – if the supes don’t approve the sales tax increase (which is by and large a regressive way to raise money) the whole budget for the mayor’s new Department of Homelessness falls apart…(more)

Stay turned. All will soon be revealed…

November 2016 Charter Amendments

introduced at roll call

Charter Amendments: Legislation Introduced at Roll Call May 24,2016

160581 Charter Amendment – [Homeless Housing and Services Fund; Transportation Improvement Fund – Budget Set-Asides]  Sponsors: Mayor; Avalos, Wiener and Farrell

160582 Charter Amendment – [City Responsibility for Maintaining Street Trees] to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco to transfer responsibility for the maintenance of street trees from abutting property owners to the City;  Sponsor: Avalos

160583 [Charter Amendment – Public Advocate] Charter Amendment (First Draft) to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco to create the office of Public Advocate. Sponsors: Campos; Avalos, Kim and Mar

160584 [Charter Amendment – Independent Investigations Bureau in the Office of the District Attorney] to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco to designate an Independent Investigations Bureau in the Office of the District Attorney as the primary agency to investigate criminal conduct arising out of critical incidents in the City involving officer-involved use of force, upon the District Attorney’s establishment of the Bureau; Sponsor: Cohen

160585 [Charter Amendment – Dignity Fund] to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco to: 1) establish the Dignity Fund to support Seniors and Adults with Disabilities; Sponsors: Cohen; Mar, Yee, Avalos and Campos

160586 [Charter Amendment – Independent Police Oversight Department and Budget Set-Aside] to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco to: re-name the Office of Citizen Complaints (OCC) as the Independent Police Oversight Department (IPOD); Sponsor: Cohen

160587 [Charter Amendment – Non-Citizen Voting in School Board Elections] Draft Charter Amendment to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco by amending Section 8.100 and adding Section 13.111 to authorize San Francisco residents 18 years of age or older who are the parents, legal guardians, or caregivers of children in the San Francisco Unified School District to vote in elections for the Board of Education, Sponsor: Mar

160588 [Charter Amendment – Housing and Development Commission] to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco, to create the Housing and Development Commission to oversee the Department of Economic and Workforce Development, the Department of Housing and Community Development, and the Department of Real Estate; Sponsors: Peskin; Kim

160589 [Charter Amendment – Municipal Transportation Agency – Appointments to Board of Directors and Budget Process] to amend the Charter of the City and County of San Francisco to split the power to make appointments to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) Board of Directors between the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors, to lower the vote by which the Board of Supervisors may reject the SFMTA Budget from seven to six, Sponsors: Yee; Kim, Peskin and Campos

SFMTA Charter Amendment

Let City Hall know you are fed up with the SFMTA. Return the power to the people.  The amendment will split the MTA Board appointments between the Mayor and the Supervisors, 4 to 3 and lower the requirement to reject the SFMTA’s budget from 7 to 6 supervisors, putting the SFMTA management in line with other city departments, and making it easier for the Board of Supervisors to respond faster to voter requests. Link to legislation File No. 160389
Campaign information: normanyee.com

They work for us. We don’t work for them.  The SFMTA is the one that needs to shift policies and goals, not the residents. San Francisco needs a transportation system that works today, not a plan for the future. We need a Board who listens to the public not one that dictates to us. Taking seats out of buses and removing bus stops will not help our aging population take public transportation.
Link to a Sample letter to the supervisors

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