Posts Tagged ‘city family’

Interim San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee’s Corrupt “City Family” Lines Up Against Prop F – Restoring Hetch Hetchy is a Bad Idea?

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Is the idea of restoring Hetch Hetchy (you know, at some point) “insane?” No, not at all.

But it sure would be inconvenient, I’ll grant you that.

Anyway, here’s the latest:

“City Contractors & City Bureaucracy Team-Up Against Prop F - Pay-to-play politics used to oppose the Yosemite Restoration Campaign

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 18, 2012 — San Francisco city contractors and the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) have ganged up to defeat Proposition F, the Water Conservation & Yosemite Restoration Initiative, the most recently released campaign finance reports disclosed.  According to the reports(1), 47% of funding for the ‘No on F’ campaign has come from companies currently doing business with San Francisco; companies with past contracts with the City, and labor unions representing contracted workers with the City. In addition, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission has spent an undisclosed amount of money entertaining San Francisco community leaders at the Hetch Hetchy reservoir, as well as more than $197,000 in federal funds promoting the “Hetch Hetchy Brand” to San Francisco voters.

“These public records demonstrate that San Francisco City Hall and its employees have arm-twisted city contractors to extract hundreds of thousands of dollars to oppose reform. It’s typical ‘pay-to-play’ politics to defend the status quo and fight water conservation,” said Mike Marshall, Campaign Director for the Yosemite Restoration Campaign. “It’s made that much worse by the improper use of rate-payer and federal funds by the staff of the SFPUC in the run-up to, and during, the campaign.”

Proposition F is the “Water Conservation & Yosemite Restoration Initiative.”  It requires the City to develop a two-part plan to build San Francisco’s local water resources and reverse the damage done to the environment by the current water system over the last 100 years.  The plan would need to be approved by voters in 2016 in order to be implemented.

ABOUT THE YOSEMITE RESTORATION CAMPAIGN: The mission of the Yosemite Restoration Campaign is to reform San Francisco’s 19th century water system to allow for the restoration of Hetch HetchyValley and the Tuolumne River in Yosemite National Park. It is a non-profit, 501(c)(4) organization. www.YosemiteRestoration.org

‘No on F’ Campaign Finance Fact Sheet

According to campaign finance reports filed on Friday, October 5 the ‘No on F’ campaign received:

–  $131,122 from companies currently doing business with the City and County of San Francisco.

–  $69,729 from companies with past contracts with the City and County of San Francisco.

 –  $43,500 from labor unions representing individuals working on projects for the City and County of San Francisco.

According to public record requests the SFPUC staff has spent:

–  $197,000 in federal EPA funds promoting the Hetch Hetchy water brand. The funds were intended to encourage San Francisco residents to call 311 to report water quality problems. (2)

    —  An undisclosed amount of money organizing eight junkets to Yosemite National Park for local Democratic Club leaders, ‘No on F’” funders, neighborhood association leaders and gay rights activists.  Despite multiple Sunshine Ordinance requests, SFPUC staff have ignored requests asking for a detailed financial accounting of staff time spent organizing these political junkets.

–  An undisclosed amount of staff costs collaborating with ‘No on F’ attorneys to lobby the Ballot Simplification Committee.

(1)  http://nf4.netfile.com/pub2/Default.aspx?aid=sfo&AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

(2)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fvug-SeFiek&playnext=1&list=PL1CCB2CBC9D71ECB3&feature=results_main

SOURCE  Yosemite Restoration Campaign

Yosemite Restoration Campaign

Web Site: http://www.YosemiteRestoration.org

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee Writes His Big America’s Cup 2013 Op-Ed on an iPhone? – Hilarity Ensues – “Ailing, Sailing”

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

Wow. Last night’s deficient op-ed from San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee is still live this AM on the San Francisco Examiner website, as Erin Sherbert notes in the category of  ”Media, WTF?”

Here it is: Yacht race, opportunity sailing in sailing in sailiong in ailing in in

Oh, this just came in from Rewrite:

(You see, the easy way to remember Isle of “Wight” is to think of all the rich white people that the America’s Cup is for.)

I wonder if the “Largest Newspaper in San Francisco and San Mateo Counties” actually printed this boner as-is hundreds of thousands of times.

Oh well.

As with the similarly-ailing Central Subway project, it appears that, once again, the City Family is failing us with the whole America’s Cup deal. Too bad San Diego* can’t take this white elephant (white whale?) yacht race off our hands.**

Oh well.

[UPDATE: Here’s the fix – “Yacht race, opportunity sailing in.” (So your big America’s Cup editorial headline doesn’t use the phrase America’s Cup? OK fine, but your hed looks like the start of a haiku now…)

*A place where it might actually make sense to build and race 72-foot-tall catamarans. I’ll tell you, it sure doesn’t make sense to do it in the Bay Area. Even Larry Ellison hisself recognizes this fact now.

**Yeah, Fun Diego actually had an AC preview race not too long ago but nobody cared, the “expected” crowds didn’t show. So the City Family members who went down there from the 415 to see how SD would handle the massive crowds ended up bored and ended up heading home early. 

USF is Wrong, There IS a Moral Compass App – It’s This: Vote the Opposite of How SPUR Tells You to Vote

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

You see, my new moral compass app will crawl through the website of SPUR (San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association) to find out its election endorsements. Then it will advise you to vote the opposite.

So, in regards to the the recent Prop A, SPUR told you to vote against ending San Francisco’s archaic and wasteful garbage monopoly.

And on the recent Prop B. SPUR told you to vote for the RPD.

My moral compass app would have advised you to favor both props. See how that works?

D’Accord? D’Accord.

Hey SPUR! Maybe everything our City Family wants isn’t “good?”

Hey SPUR! Maybe you have nothing at all to do with promoting “Good Government.” Maybe you just like promoting the government we have.

How wrong you are, University of San Francisco bus ad:

Click to expand

All right, what aboot the next election coming up, mmmm. Hey SPUR? Why not let’s fix the mistake our City Family forefathers made with Hetch Hetchy? How does that grab you?

Oh, here’s the answer:

Why We Need Hetch Hetchy More Than Ever

 Now, realize, SPUR, I’m not saying that it would be easy or cheap for San Francisco to change things at the Hetchy Hetch, I’m just saying, you know, maybe, at least as a goal for the far off future, maybe we could think about taking a look at what we did to the Yosemite area. Yes, we were able to bully other municipalities a century ago, but was that fair? You know, cause the New York Times and the Sacramento Bee and the LA Times and a bunch of others favor looking into changing things at Hetch Hetchy, right?

So don’t you want to think about this? You know, use your own in-built moral compass?

God damn, SPUR, you don’t have any moral compass at all.

Who the Hell put you in charge of Good Government in the 415?

Oh well.

In closing:

SPUR, you suck!

Anyway, here’s some more on Hetch Hetchy, Dear Reader. Leaving you with this:

Drain the Dam!
San Francisco Examiner
February 16, 2012

Will San Francisco Vote to Drain Hetch Hetchy?
Sacramento Bee
February 15, 2012

San Francisco Water Ethos Goes Only so Far
Sacramento Bee
January 25, 2012

Los Angeles Times – Editorial on Hetch Hetchy
Los Angeles Times
January 15,2012

Historical New York Times Articles:

What’s That PG&E? You’re Sponsoring a “Green App” Contest for $25k? Well, That Makes Up for San Bruno and EVERYTHING!

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

I don’t know, PG&E. Sometimes I get the idea that you don’t know that you are the suckiest major utility in the United States…

Hey, I know, why not develop an app what tells you how to do your job without blowing people up?

(And then apply to the CPUC to get reimbursed for all your related expenses. Hooray.)

Via David Yu - click to expand

“PG&E Sponsors U.S. Department of Energy Green Button Apps Contest

Utility Offers $25,000 Toward National Prize for Top Energy Apps

SAN FRANCISCO, March 22, 2012 — After seeing the potential for customers to save energy and money by downloading personal energy data through its Green Button service, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) is supporting further industry innovation by sponsoring a nationwide search for the best Green Button energy apps.

The Apps for Energy contest is a partnership with the White House, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and U.S. technology firms. The developer finalists who create the winning apps for phones and computers will take home part of a $100,000 cash prize from sponsors PG&E, Itron and the DOE, as well as national bragging rights.

“Green Button will arm millions of Americans with information they can use to lower their energy bills,” said Nancy Sutley, Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality. “Innovative tools like these are good for our economy, good for the health of our communities, and an essential part of our approach toward a secure and clean energy future that works for Americans.”

PG&E launched the Green Button in December 2011, responding to a challenge from the White House to design a standard format for customers with SmartMeters(TM) to download their energy use data online. The Green Button aims to promote personal energy awareness and development of phone and computer apps to aid customers in making informed decisions about their energy use and help them save money on their monthly energy statement. To date, there have been about 220,000 Green Button downloads.

“There is incredible power and potential in providing our customers with new visibility into their energy use, with information that’s clear accurate, timely, and easy to use,” said Tony Earley, PG&E Corporation’s Chairman, CEO and President. “Today’s announcement shows PG&E’s commitment to stimulating growth and innovation in the developer community. When it comes to energy management, we are driven to help transform the way our customers manage energy in their home.”

The DOE has long supported energy innovation, driving a nationwide push for more renewable energy sources and encouraging every American to become more engaged with how they use energy.

“Providing consumers with easy access to data on their energy consumption can help give them the tools they need to make informed decisions about their energy use,” U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu has said. “Developing applications and services to help consumers understand and control their energy use is a field ripe for American innovation.”

App developers will be able to participate by registering at challenge.gov and submitting a description, video, photos, and a link to their app. The website energy.gov/developer will be the main resource page for developers. Both sites will go live April 5. Until then, the public can submit ideas for energy apps at energy.gov. The winner is planned to be announced in May.

PG&E customers with an electric SmartMeter(TM) and a My Energy account can log on at pge.com/myenergy, click on the Green Button icon, and download up to 13 months of their hourly electric usage data. About half of the utility’s electric customers – or 2.3 million – are registered with My Energy.

Green Button is one of many energy- and cost-saving benefits available to PG&E customers with a SmartMeter(TM). Other benefits include:

– Hourly electric and daily gas usage data charts via a secure PG&E
website
— Energy Alerts to notify customers when they’re approaching a
higher-priced electric tier and to encourage a change in their energy
use
— Outage detection to help PG&E quickly restore service
— Remote service connection as a convenience for customers
— Special time-varying rate programs like SmartRate(TM)
— Enabling in-home energy management devices that display the energy usage
of appliances

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to 15 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit http://www.pge.com/about/newsroom/ and www.pgecurrents.com.

SOURCE Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Pacific Gas and Electric Company”

If You’re a Taxi Driver, the SFPD Might Just Start Yelling at You, Instead of Giving You a Ticket

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

As here.

I was thinking, “Man, I wouldn’t make a U-turn right in front of a cop,” but this cabbie just went for it, going from outbound McAllister to inbound to pick up a fare, as seen camera left

So the cop pulls up and then stops to roll down his window to start yelling.

Thusly:

Click to expand

Now if you drove like this cabbie, you’d get a ticket.

But you’re not a member of the City Family…

Christmas on Sixth Street! At Long Last, Our City Family Puts Up Lighted Snowflakes from Lower Market to Mid-Market

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

This is unprecedented.

This is the City Family extending the Market Street lighted Christmas snowflake zone all the way to Mid-Market.

See?

Click to expand

They used to stop at 5th Street, but now they don’t – they go farther this year.

Hurray!

Won’t this please our corporate overlords at Twitter? (Probably not, but, you know, can’t hurt to try.)

All right, come to the annual lighting ceremony with the Mayor this Thursday evening, if you want:

“Snowflakes on Market – Lighting Ceremony
Nov. 17, 2011 through mid-January 2012

More than 140 five-foot-wide energy-saving LED illuminated snowflakes will decorate Market Street’s signature “Path of Gold” light poles this winter from Second to Sixth streets. A lighting ceremony, featuring dancers from the San Francisco Ballet’s Nutcracker, is scheduled for Nov. 17 at 6 p.m. near the cable car turnaround at Powell and Market streets. The event is free and open to the public. For information, visit www.marketstreetassociation.org

It will go a little something like this, probably.

Dixitque Gavin fiat lux, et facta est lux:

Those are Nutcracker-starring “Snowflakes” from the San Francisco Ballet. (The run starts up again December 9th this year.) Jessica Carter is the snowflake in the middle, so I’m told.

Happy Holidays!

Our PG&E Energy Monopoly Attempted Suicide Last Night – KABOOM at Beale and Mission HQ – Call Before You Dig, PG&E!

Friday, November 11th, 2011

Ah let’s review.

- Remember when a mid-level PG&E employee* threatened me at an event sponsored by the Presidio Trust, told me that I should take one of my PG&E-related posts down because, I was done told, “It would be your interest to take that post down?” And I was like, well what does that mean? Oh that’s right, Gentle Reader, you don’t remember, but I do. Strike One. 

- And remember when PG&E killed eight people near SFO last year? Strike Two.

- And remember when Mayor Ed Lee* recently started going on about how “City Family” member PG&E is a great local company who gets it?” Strike Three.

Oh well.

Now, here’s the scene last night at 7:00 PM as I was swinging by the FiDi to pick up my special lady friend at an area law firm. Workers were just setting up the cones. And then a paramedic was telling me, “This one isn’t PG&E’s fault – somebody was digging.” Well yeah, but that somebody was PG&E itself:

Click to expand

Isn’t it ironic, dont’cha think?

Oh, and this was all right in front of Pacific Gas & Electric Building, one of San Francisco’s tallest, you know, at 77 Beale:

“The Pacific Gas & Electric Building is a 150 m (490 ft) skyscraper located at 77 Beale and Mission streets in the financial district of San FranciscoCalifornia. Completed in 1971, the 34 story building is headquarters for Pacific Gas and Electric Company, the main utility provider for Northern California, and has been host to a nesting pair of Peregrine Falcons since 1987. List of tallest buildings in San Francisco

Isn’t it ironic again, dont’cha think?

Hey, PG&E, why don’t you eat your own dog food and CALL BEFORE YOUR DIG?

Via Daedrius

The easy-to-remember phone number is 811, you remember?

In short, I just can’t believe how much you suck, PG&E.

Straighten up and fly right PG&E.

*A member of San Francisco’s dominant political faction (aka Downtown) along with fellow members Willie Brown, Chamber of Commerce, Gavin Newsom, real estate interests, PG&E, and you know, all those non-profits, among others.

Jesus Tap-Dancing Christ: More Money Laundering Found in Ed Lee Campaign – Meet CitiApartments’ “Eviction Goon”

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

[UPDATE: Senator Leland Yee is on the case this AM - he's doing a presser involving this latest allegation. (I guess it's too late to call this an October Surprise, and frankly, it's not all that surprising neither. Let's call it a November Expectation. Brace yourself for more.) Oh, and Leland is onto some Chinatown voting sting operation as well.

And there's this: "Statement from Chiu Campaign on Money Laundering Allegations - SAN FRANCISCO (November 2, 2011): Addisu Demissie, spokesman for the David Chiu for Mayor campaign, released the following statement about a San Francisco Chronicle report of potential money laundering by supporters of Mayor Ed Lee:

"This is now the fourth allegation of illegal conduct by Mayor Lee's supporters, and it should be investigated fully by the District Attorney and appropriate authorities,” Demissie said. “With six days to go before Election Day, it will be up to the voters to decide whether this kind of bullying, pay-to-play politics is what they want to see at City Hall for the next 4 years. David is going to spend the last 6 days of this race talking about why he represents a new generation of leadership for San Francisco that will stand tough against the special interests and shake things up at City Hall."

Paid for by David Chiu for Mayor 2011, P.O. Box 641541, San Francisco, CA 94164, FPPC##1337108]

Well, it looks like early-rising City Attorney Dennis Jose Herrera is the first one out of the gates to follow up on today’s piece from San Francisco Chronicle Staff Writers John Coté and Heather Knight.

Testify, DJH:

“Too many of Ed Lee’s supporters act as though they’re above the law — on money laundering, on ballot tampering, and more – and Ed Lee isn’t strong enough to stop it.

Amen.

Earlier this year, Ed Lee was picked unanimously to be an Interim Mayor. He wasn’t picked to be a Reformer. He’ll never be a Reformer.

In Ed Lee’s world, the notorious Willie Brown Administration deserves an A+, Rose Pak is not a cancer on Chinatown, and corner-cutting PG&E (“KABOOM!“) is simply “a great local corporation” and a “great company that gets it.”

Oh well.

Is Ed Lee Breaking Bad? Has the City Family corrupted him? Or has he corrupted the City Family? A little of both?

Click to expand

All the deets:

“Herrera calls on FPPC to join D.A. in investigating new Ed Lee campaign money laundering charge - CitiApartments’ former eviction goon led reimbursement-for-donation scheme, suggesting political payback for City Attorney’s 2006 tenant-protection lawsuit

SAN FRANCISCO (Nov. 2, 2011) — City Attorney Dennis Herrera this morning called on the state Fair Political Practices Commission to join District Attorney George Gascón in reviewing new allegations reported in today’s San Francisco Chronicle that Ed Lee’s mayoral campaign received donations that appear to have been illegally laundered to skirt San Francisco $500 per donor contribution maximum.[1] Andrew Hawkins, a property services manager whose harrowing tenant intimidation tactics were central to Herrera’s lawsuit five years ago against the Lembi Group landlords’ once high-rolling CitiApartments empire, promised reimbursements to at least sixteen employees in exchange for maximum contributions to Ed Lee’s mayoral campaign at an Oct. 18, 2011 fundraiser, according to the Chronicle.

It is the second major allegation of campaign money laundering to benefit Ed Lee’s campaign. The first, involving GO Lorrie’s airport shuttle, is the subject of separate investigations by Gascón’s office and the FPPC, the state commission responsible to investigate and impose penalties for violations of the California Political Reform Act. Such schemes have been prosecuted as felonies in California for conspiring to evade campaign contribution limits, and for making campaign contributions under false names.

I think San Franciscans have now seen enough,” said City Attorney Dennis Herrera. “Too many of Ed Lee’s supporters act as though they’re above the law — on money laundering, on ballot tampering, and more — and Ed Lee isn’t strong enough to stop it. If this is how they behave before an election, just imagine how they’ll behave after the election, if Ed Lee wins. This scheme is clearly a bid for political payback by CitiApartments henchmen for my litigation to protect tenants five years ago. It is patently illegal, and I call on the FPPC to join the District Attorney in investigating.”

Hawkins is listed in Ed Lee’s campaign disclosures as the owner of Archway Property Services. As the one-time head of CitiApartments’ “tenant relocation program,” the gun-carrying Hawkins is reported to have coerced more than 2,500 tenants out of their rent-controlled units, and once boasted in civil court testimony, “I run people out of their apartments for a living. It’s what I do.

Several recipients of Hawkins’ email invitation to an Oct. 18 event on Russian Hill made contributions to Ed Lee’s campaign on the same date. All contributed the maximum $500.

Herrera sued the CitiApartments residential rental property behemoth in Aug. 2006 for an array of unlawful business and tenant harassment practices, which sought to dispossess long-term residents of their rent-controlled apartments. The coerced vacancies freed the company to make often-unpermitted renovations to units, and then re-rent them to new tenants at dramatically increased market rates. The illegal business model enabled CitiApartments, Skyline Realty and other entities under the sway of real estate family patriarch Frank Lembi to aggressively outbid competitors for residential properties throughout San Francisco for several years — before lawsuits and a sharp economic downturn forced the aspiring empire into bankruptcies, foreclosures and receiverships.

A 2009 San Francisco Magazine feature story on the Lembi real estate empire[2] described Andrew Hawkins as “a burly former nightclub bouncer who headed up CitiApartments’ relocation program.” Hawkins reportedly led teams as large as 14 full-time employees, according to the report, and the company estimated that “Hawkins relocated more than 2,500 tenants.” An earlier exposé in 2006 by the San Francisco Bay Guardian[3] cited civil court testimony in which Hawkins boasted to one tenant’s family member, “I run people out of their apartments for a living. It’s what I do.”

# # #

SOURCES:
[1] Source: “Ed Lee donors face money-laundering allegations” by John Coté and Heather Knight, San Francisco Chronicle, Nov. 2, 2011, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/11/02/MNKJ1LOMB7.DTL
[2] Source: “War of values” by Danelle Morton, San Francisco Magazine, Nov. 19, 2009, http://www.modernluxury.com/san-francisco/story/war-of-values
[3] Source: “The Scumlords: Part One of a Three-Part Series” by G.W. Schulz, San Francisco Bay Guardian, March 8, 2006, http://www.sfbg.com/40/23/news_skyline.html

Halloween in the Castro 2011 a Huge Success – City Defies City Family, Shows Up in Costume Despite the Official Ban

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

[UPDATE: Appears as if the City Family actually fought back against the revelers with water trucks. So much for the "zero tolerance" edict from Police Chief Greg Suhr. Anyway, look for Halloween in the Castro 2012 to be twice as big. You'll see...]

To review, here’s the official word from San Francisco’s Gay Goebbels, “City Family” Minister of Propaganda David Perry, about Halloween in the Castro 2011:

“THERE WILL BE NO HALLOWEEN CELEBRATION IN THE CASTRO in 2011″

“…Staying Home for Halloween is the ‘in’ thing to do…”

And here’s the same message from a local media outfit, you know, the one owned by gay-hating, evolution-unbelieving Republican Philip Anschutz:

“Halloween bash in San Francisco’s Castro won’t rise from dead this year”

But nevertheless, cool people got dressed up and headed to the Castro last night (pants not necessarily required), just like back in the day.

Like these people waiting for the 24 Divisadero bus yesterday evening:

Click to expand

Actually, the Castro was hopping. Via Owenchristoff:

Fun Halloween! Castro was a zoo. Glad to be back in the quiet Richmond dist.”

Bay Citizen writer Scott James brought it all home for us last night:

Official party? Nope. Who cares. Crowds converging now on San Francisco’s Castro for Halloween”

And there’s this, from NilesHD:

“Although there’s no official San Francisco Halloween anymore in the Castro, that’s where most people go to celebrate Halloween !!”

Now the way to explain this is by noting that the City Family doesn’t really benefit from people going to the Castro district on Halloween, so it suppresses turnout by lying to people.

Simply.

(If Halloween were an event that the City Family cared about, then things would be much different. It’d be more like the sitch with the America’s Cup 2013, you know, Rich People Like Boats, so it’s full speed ahead with AC13. Oh well.)

Now what’s this, is it the campaign of, speak of the Devil, quasi-City Family member David Chiu on the streets of the Castro last night?

Yep:

And they weren’t alone, of course:

Via Luxomedia

Happy Halloween 2011, San Francisco.

See you next year!

Trouble in the City Family? Police Officers Association vs. Officers for Justice re: Endorsing Paul Miyamoto over Chris Cunnie

Monday, October 31st, 2011

[UPDATE: Larry Bush of CitiReport has more on this topic. And Rachel Gordon has more on this "neck-in-neck" race]

Well, look what just turned up at the City Family Dead Letter Office - it’s a missive from San Francisco Police Officers Association President Gary Delganes to Officers for Justice President Julian Hill.

It’s all about:

Loyalty;

The endorsement of Captain Paul Miyamoto by Officers for Justice;

Betrayal against “one of our own”;

Solidarity with African American officers;

The pension of one of the highest-paid police lieutenants in the United States;

How Chris Cunnie made Julian Hill one of the highest-paid police lieutenants in the United States;

Betrayal, again; and

An invitation to the next POA meeting on November 16, 2011

See?

Click to expand

Is this good?

Is this meant for public release?

I know not.