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June 18, 2019

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Mayor London Breed has hit a roadblock convincing six supervisors to sign onto her proposal to amend the City Charter. The amendment would accelerate the approval of housing projects that would provide 100% affordable housing or teacher housing. Supervisors Vallie Brown, Ahsha Safaí and Catherine Stefani have signed on, and Breed has until July 26 to gather three more signatures to place the measure on the November ballot. SFist | San Francisco Chronicle

Supervisors Hillary Ronen and Sandra Lee Fewer has censured Breed's proposed $10 million incentive program to pay teachers up to $5,000 more per year at underperforming schools, calling it ineffective. San Francisco Examiner

“SFPD’s opposition [to the motion] is remarkable for everything that it does not say.”

Two months after the San Francisco Police Department raided journalist Bryan Carmody’s home, office and vehicle to reveal who had leaked a police report about the death of the late public defender Jeff Adachi, SFPD “effectively conceded” their search warrants were invalid, Carmody’s attorney Thomas Burke wrote. The filing stated that SFPD had failed to contest assertions claiming the warrants violated state and federal law. 48hills

The spokesperson for the Office of the Public Defender will be replaced at the end of June. Katy St. Clair suspects she was shown the door over how she handled communications for the office in the wake of the SFPD’s raid. San Francisco Chronicle

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Office of Cannabis
A map of permitted cannabis retailers.

Hundreds have applied to The City’s cannabis equity program, which aims to prioritize granting cannabis permits to those disportionately impacted by the War on Drugs. Last week, two additional storefront retailers received approval for their permits, bringing the total number to six. To expedite the slow pace of permitting, Mayor London Breed’s proposed budget provides a $400,000 increase to the Office of Cannabis’ budget for more employment. San Francisco Examiner

Last month, San Francisco’s new director of the Office of Cannabis, Marisa Rodriguez, took her staff to the San Quentin State Prison. “I think in order to do this work — to do it well and to truly understand it — we almost have to make it our DNA. Equity is our DNA. The Office of Cannabis equals equity,” Rodriguez said. SF Weekly


Members of the Board of Supervisors has proposed helping fund free mental health care for all San Franciscans by increasing the gross receipts tax on companies with CEOs who earn a hundred times more than their median employee salaries. It is the third item proposed for the November ballot that would tax The City's tech companies. San Francisco Chronicle

The Board of Supervisors Budget and Finance Committee adopted an agreement raising the affordable housing bond set for the November ballot from $500 million to $600 million. The two biggest additions are $20 million toward teacher housing and $60 million more on senior housing. San Francisco Examiner

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Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Michael Hunter will leave his post to become San Joaquin County's first chief medical examiner. San Francisco will launch a national search to replace him. Hunter's company Forensic Doctors Group will go on to make $985,740 in his first year in San Joaquin County, more than double his $439,000 San Francisco salary. SFist | San Francisco Examiner

Veteran performing arts administrator Kelly Tweeddale will replace Glenn McCoy as executive director of San Francisco Ballet in September. San Francisco Chronicle

The California Academy of Sciences has a new executive director: Dr. Scott D. Sampson, a renowned fossil expert, CEO of Science World British Columbia and host of the PBS show "Dinosaur Train." SFist


On Friday, PG&E Corp. shareholders will meet in The City for the first time since the company’s equipment caused a devastating wildfire that led it to file for bankruptcy protection. They will vote on the makeup and size of its board of directors, a move perceived as critical to its future to prove to shareholders and the public that the company is committed to safety.

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Neighborhoods across The City have had an increase in the number of vacant storefronts. The San Francisco Chronicle found seismic retrofits of old buildings and red tape that slows the opening of new businesses to be the main two causes of storefront vacancies in North Beach. Landlords intentionally keeping storefronts vacant to write the lost rent off their taxes appears to be a myth.


In 2018, the San Francisco Police Department responded to more than 50,000 mental health calls. Only 113, or .2 percent, resulted in officers using force. The figure shows that the department’s mandated 40-hour crisis intervention training has made progress, according to a report presented to the Police Commission. Of the 2,300 police officers, 43% percent have completed the training to date.

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Transportation Roundup

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency will remove all offical-looking signs calling for transgender safety put inside its vehicles by activists — and not rule out legal recourse. San Francisco Examiner

By the end of the year, BART will stop selling paper tickets to force commuters to exclusively pay fares with Clipper cards. San Francisco Chronicle

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency will not grant new bikeshare permits until its legal dispute with Lyft ends, slowing down its plans to have 11,000 rental bikes available on the streets. San Francisco Examiner

Should the Central Subway go to North Beach, Fisherman’s Wharf, the Marina, Cow Hollow and Presidio? The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency is taking feedback about where the line should terminate beyond Chinatown. Curbed San Francisco

The double-tall fare gates BART is piloting at Richmond station to curb fare evasion have clamped down on the heads of wheelchair users. San Francisco Examiner

The Neighborhoods


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Calle 24

Calle 24 Latino Cultural District and city agencies held a public meeting last week to develop design guidelines that would maintain and enhance the character of lower 24th Street. The rules, once established, will determine the design of windows, signage art and facades.


South of Market

In a bid to save popular music venue the Mezzanine from being evicted for office space, District 6 Supervisor Matt Haney introduced legislation that would require landlords of entertainment venues in the neighborhood to seek City Hall’s approval when converting them into offices.


Financial District

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Amazon Go now has a competitor in the cashier-less convenience store — almost. Called Zippin, the convenience store features a variety of staples sure to please the area’s workers. Because of The City’s new law requiring cash, a cashier is on hand to exchange money for items.



Last week, the Port of San Francisco released a 222-page plan for the 7.5 miles of waterfront that included recommendations from a 34-member working group that met for three years. The big takeaway: more space for activities.



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Planning Department

City College of San Francisco advocates and neighbors voiced opposition to the proposed development of the 17-acre Balboa Reservoir into 1,100 apartments, telling the Planning Commission about concerns over affordability and neighborhood impacts. The project’s environmental impact report is expected to be released next summer.


Hunters Point

During the case alleging widespread fraud by engineering and consulting firm Tetra Tech in the cleanup of a radiation-contaminated Hunters Point Naval Shipyard, U.S. District Judge James Donato questioned why lawsuits related to the company’s work at Treasure Island and Alameda should be off the table. The question likely means Tetra Tech’s bid to exclude claims related to the other projects will be denied.


Civic Center

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Beyond My Ken/Wikipedia

A judge upheld the Art Commission’s decision to remove the controversial statue “Early Days” from the Pioneer Monument in Civic Center Plaza. In doing so, the court rejected a lawsuit alleging that the commission illegally wasted public resources by removing the artwork for being “racist and painful to Native Americans and those who shared the interpretation of it being racist and that its existence represented white supremacy.”

The Columnists
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Joe Eskenazi: The Decline and Fall of Mission Beach Cafe was Even Messier Than You Thought

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Heather Knight, On San Francisco: San Francisco’s Street Purgatory: 148 Miles of Rejected Roads the City Won’t Maintain

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Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez, On Guard: San Francisco Supervisor Candidate Dean Preston to ‘Rogue’ Landlords: ‘We Should Run You Out of Town’

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Phil Matier: Fare Evasion Costing BART a Lot, So Stopping It a Rising Priority

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Willie Brown, Willie’s World: Of Course Trump Would Consider Using Foreign-Supplied Dirt. Who Wouldn’t?

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Carl Nolte, Native Son: A Hot Day in San Francisco? That’s Earthquake Weather

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Sally Stephens: Rec and Park Bypasses Community Before Changing Dog Park Hours