Skip to content

Through the cracks journalism

The latest catch.

November 2016 SFMTA Charter Amendment

May 30, 2016

Charter Amendment introduced by Supervisor Yee would split the MTA  Board appointments between the Mayor and the Supervisors, 4 to 3. The board currently needs seven votes to reject the SFMTA’s budget. The measure would lower that requirement to six votes.

So far Yee, Campos, Kim, and Peskin are supporting this Charter Amendment. Tell your supervisor you want their support as well. The SFMTA is the one that needs to shift policies and goals, not the residents. They work for us. We don’t work for them. Sample letter

SF Trans Celebration Boos Pols and Says No to More Police

June 26, 2016

by Lola M. Chavez : missionlocal – excerpt

Pride Weekend began Friday afternoon with more than a 1,000 or or so revelers gathered in Dolores Park to celebrate with a Trans March that included signing, poetry and politics.

Mayor Ed Lee and Scott Wiener arrived and they and other political leaders were were promptly booed off the stage before being able to speak to the crowd.

Ashley Love, a transexual journalist, was one of the many to speak out against Supervisor Wiener.

“I’m tired of people using our community as a prop. A political prop,” Love said. “I’m tired of politicians coming here for five minutes and doing a sound bite and running off. But do they really care about us? Weiner is against homelessness. A lot of trans are suffering from being homeless.

Love continued to press on about this year’s increased levels of police at Pride. “The police have taken over Pride. Trans people of color are at high risk of police brutality. I’m not going to go on Sunday. Why would I want to go and be subject to harm and discrimination?”

Love pretty much summed up the feeling of many at the march where “Police out of Pride,” was a popular sign. SF Gate reported that some organizations including “Black Lives Matter, the Transgender, Gender Variant, and Intersex Justice Project and St. James Infirmary” dropped out of the parade to protest the police presence.

Gary McCoy, a reader, pointed out that State Senator Mark Leno and others were also booed off the platform. He included the video below in his comment.

Friday’s event was the 13th trans march in San Francisco. The theme this year was “Embracing our Legacy, We are Still Here.”

The celebration left the park for a march to Civic Center where the city unveiled a new street sign at Turk and Taylor named for the Gene Compton’s Cafeteria Riot of August 1966 when police tried to prevent transgender people from gathering at the Compton cafe in the Tenderloin… (more)

The unimaginable happened this week. The politicians were told off during Gay Pride celebrations.

Budget deal reached, but clouded by debate over homeless encampment measure

June 26, 2016

By : sfexaminer – excerpt

San Francisco legislators reached an agreement over The City’s proposed budget Friday after three long days of negotiations, but funding could be in jeopardy due to a heated debate involving the homeless.

The deal between Mayor Ed Lee and the Board of Supervisors results in investing nearly $34 million in services for the homeless, public safety efforts and youth programs beyond what the mayor had initially proposed.

Click here to view the complete list of budget add-backs.

The board’s Budget and Finance Committee spent the past two weeks cutting the mayor’s $9.6 billion budget proposal, and began negotiating how to “add-back” the money Wednesday. A final deal was reached at around 3 p.m. Friday. The committee also allocated $26 million in the second year of the budget.

But the budget debate is still far from over.

In an unusual move, the budget assumes revenue from a sales tax hike expected to go before voters in November that would then be used to fund transit and homeless services. That would bring in some $100 million annually for transit and $50 million annually for homeless services.

That proposal, however, could be in peril.

Supervisor John Avalos said Friday he won’t support the sales tax measure for homeless services unless Supervisor Mark Farrell pulls his “vile political measure” that would prohibit tent encampments in public spaces and authorize The City to remove them within 24 hours.

The measure requires The City to offer housing or shelter before removing an encampment, but critics say there aren’t enough resources to accommodate the thousands of people who are living on the streets.

That controversial measure was placed last Tuesday on the November ballot by Farrell with the support of supervisors Scott Wiener, Katy Tang and Malia Cohen…

The full board is scheduled to vote July 19 on The City’s budget proposal(more)

Britain votes to leave EU: Cameron to resign; markets rocked

June 24, 2016

Danica Kirka and Jill Lawless, Associated Press : sfgate – excerpt

LONDON (AP) — Britain voted to leave the European Union after a bitterly divisive referendum campaign, toppling the government Friday, sending global markets plunging and shattering the stability of a project in continental unity designed half a century ago to prevent World War III.

The decision launches a yearslong process to renegotiate trade, business and political links between the United Kingdom and what will become a 27-nation bloc, an unprecedented divorce that could take decades to complete.

“The dawn is breaking on an independent United Kingdom,” said Nigel Farage, leader of the U.K. Independence Party. “Let June 23 go down in our history as our independence day!”

Prime Minister David Cameron, who had led the campaign to keep Britain in the EU, said he would resign by October and left it to his successor to decide when to invoke Article 50, which triggers a departure from European Union… (more)

SFPD’s use-of-force policy reforms unanimously passed by Police Commission

June 24, 2016

By : sfweekly – excerpt

A compromise was tentatively reached Wednesday between San Francisco’s police union and police watchdogs over the details of new rules governing officers’ use of force.

That compromise came as dueling versions of the rules that will govern how and when police use force in San Francisco went before The City’s Police Commission on Wednesday night for a final unanimous vote.

“A lot of what we’re fighting over are very, very particular,” said Commissioner Petra DeJesus. “I think we need to take a stand for strong language.”

While the union agreed in theory with the majority of the compromise, it did not agree to promise to give up its rights in negotiation.

“We cannot make that agreement here and now,” said Union President Martin Halloran… (more)

RELATED:
“Sleeper Hold,” Cops Shooting At Cars Central To Dispute Over S.F. Police Use of Force Policy

 

The War on Weed Is Winding Down – But Will Monsanto Be the Winner?

June 23, 2016

by Ellen Brown: ellenbrown – excerpt

The war on cannabis that began in the 1930s seems to be coming to an end. Research shows that this natural plant, rather than posing a deadly danger to health, has a wide range of therapeutic benefits. But skeptics question the sudden push for legalization, which is largely funded by wealthy investors linked to Big Ag and Big Pharma.

In April, Pennsylvania became the 24th state to legalize medical cannabis, a form of the plant popularly known as marijuana. That makes nearly half of US states. A major barrier to broader legalization has been the federal law under which all cannabis – even the very useful form known as industrial hemp – is classed as a Schedule I controlled substance that cannot legally be grown in the US. But that classification could change soon. In a letter sent to federal lawmakers in April, the US Drug Enforcement Administration said it plans to release a decision on rescheduling marijuana in the first half of 2016.

Competitor or Attractive New Market for the Pharmaceutical Industry?

The documented medical use of cannabis goes back two thousand years, but the Schedule I ban has seriously hampered medical research. Despite that obstacle, cannabis has now been shown to have significant therapeutic value for a wide range of medical conditions, including cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, glaucoma, lung disease, anxiety, muscle spasms, hepatitis C, inflammatory bowel disease, and arthritis pain.

New research has also revealed the mechanism for these wide-ranging effects. It seems the active pharmacological components of the plant mimic chemicals produced naturally by the body called endocannabinoids. These chemicals are responsible for keeping critical biological functions in balance, including sleep, appetite, the immune system, and pain. When stress throws those functions off, the endocannabinoids move in to restore balance

Competitor or Attractive New Market for the Pharmaceutical Industry?

The documented medical use of cannabis goes back two thousand years, but the Schedule I ban has seriously hampered medical research. Despite that obstacle, cannabis has now been shown to have significant therapeutic value for a wide range of medical conditions, including cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, glaucoma, lung disease, anxiety, muscle spasms, hepatitis C, inflammatory bowel disease, and arthritis pain.

New research has also revealed the mechanism for these wide-ranging effects. It seems the active pharmacological components of the plant mimic chemicals produced naturally by the body called endocannabinoids. These chemicals are responsible for keeping critical biological functions in balance, including sleep, appetite, the immune system, and pain. When stress throws those functions off, the endocannabinoids move in to restore balance

With the health benefits of cannabis now well established, the battlefield has shifted from its decriminalization to who can grow it, sell it, and prescribe it. Under existing California law, patients like Pepper are able to grow and use the plant essentially for free. New bills purporting to legalize marijuana for recreational use impose regulations that opponents say would squeeze home growers and small farmers out of the market, would heighten criminal sanctions for violations, and could wind up replacing the natural cannabis plant with patented, genetically modified (GMO) plants that must be purchased year after year. These new bills and the Monsanto/Bayer connection will be the subject of a follow-up article. Stay tuned…(more)

This is one of the more comprehensive articles on the subject to date.

Muni’s Impact on Small Business

June 20, 2016

From transit-only lanes to the loss of parking spaces, neighborhood activists have been using the Commission as a venue to criticize San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency for projects that they say put small business in jeopardy. This meeting was no different.Staffpeople from various departments within the SFMTA gave presentations on a variety of topics, including the agency’s public outreach—focusing on small businesses—the residential parking permit program, capital projects and improvement projects on Lombard and Mission streets.

Neighborhood activists attended the meeting to speak during publicly on all items. They represented commercial corridors on which SFMTA has ongoing or recently-completed projects including Mission Street, Geary Boulevard, Lombard Street and Taraval Street.

Safety was consistently cited by SFMTA staff as the reason behind all their improvement projects to heavily-used corridors.

The criticisms of those who commented on each item centered largely on the agency’s re-engineering of streets to accommodate transit, bicycles and pedestrians over private automobiles, leading to reduced auto traffic along commercial corridors and an attendant loss of parking spaces.

Bob Starzel, a representative with the Greater Geary Merchants and Property Owners Association, laid out the small business perspective of transit changes as a counterpoint to the City’s Transit First policy approach.

“If we took [SFMTA’s] numbers, and they were right, and only 30 percent of people drive, think to yourself what it means to your business if now some good proportion of that 30 percent is not gonna come to do business with you,” Starzel said. “What that means is your profit margin is hurt.”

SFMTA staff will continue appearing before the Commission to address how their projects and programs affect small business for the next few months.

When the Small Business Commission heard the latest parking scheme from the SFMTA’s SFPark department, and the reaction was not what the presenters expected. Watch the reaction here of the Commissioners – Item 7 http://sanfrancisco.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=45&clip_id=25585

 

Budget proposal holds SFPD funding hostage until reforms happen

June 18, 2016
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 153 other followers

%d bloggers like this: