Well, here it is, via Noe Valley SF, a Hyper-Local Guide to Noe Valley … With Attitude, it’s Supervisor Scott Wiener’s address to the NIMBY associations of District 8 regarding his approval of U-Verse Internet/TV/Phone service for San Francisco after all those years of delay.
See below – it goes on and on.
I myself don’t recall seeing too many AT&T boxes in the 415 with graffiti. The shots produced by the NIMBYs generally are from out of town / out of state. Anyway, here’s one of the genuine AT&T utility boxes already in town. It sort of has graffiti:
Via Eric Fischer – click to expand
Leave us begin:
From: Date: Wed, Jul 20, 2011 at 4:41 PM
Subject: My vote on the AT&T issue
I’m sending this email to a number of neighborhood association leaders and other involved folks in District 8, in order to explain my vote yesterday on the AT&T environmental appeal. I would appreciate it if you would forward this email to your boards, memberships, and neighbors who have an interest in this issue. The voters are entitled to an explanation of all of my votes (and I cast many each week), including votes as controversial as this one. People can agree or disagree, but they deserve an explanation.
I will start by saying that I struggled mightily with this issue. Like many of you, I do not like these boxes, or any of the utility boxes that are already on our streets. Part of me very much wanted to vote against AT&T and for an EIR simply because I dislike the boxes. But one of the commitments that I made to myself, and to the voters, was that I’m not just going to be a reactive elected official. I committed that I was going to be the kind of elected official who tried to find solutions to hard issues. I also committed to myself early on that I would not abuse CEQA by ordering EIRs where the law doesn’t support it simply because I have policy issues with the underlying project. As described below, ordering an EIR here probably would have been illegal and certainly would have fed into our City and State’s addiction to environmental review, with the effect that good projects (including public projects) are delayed, killed, or made much more expensive than they need to be.
The issue here was very hard — pretty much everyone agrees that Comcast is in desperate need of competition while also agreeing that these boxes stink. There were also incredibly strong views on both sides of this issue. I received many emails from opponents, passionately and articulately describing the issues with the boxes, and from proponents, passionately and articulately describing why we need the service and competition. This was a no-win vote for me in terms of popularity contests. Either way I voted was going to make one group or the other upset with me. But, for better or for worse, casting controversial votes is what we do at the Board. If I wanted to be loved by everyone all the time, I wouldn’t have run for office.
And, this issue pointed to a major problem we have in San Francisco. We do a bad job managing our sidewalks. Our departments don’t coordinate well. We don’t have a strong master plan. We haven’t fully implemented the Better Streets Plan. That plan is how we should be managing our sidewalks and deciding what to put on them and where. Not through CEQA, which is a blunt instrument that doesn’t get you much other than delay and expense, but through actually having a plan for our sidewalks. As described below, through a strong and well-planned permitting system, we can do that.
So, why did I, in the end, tip in favor of voting to reject the appeal?”