Posts Tagged ‘district 11’

Uh Oh, Now There’s ANOTHER Lawsuit Against the City: Small Property Owners vs. the “Nonconforming Unit Ordinance”

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

Man, San Francisco sure seems to be getting sued a lot by property owners a lot these days.

Get used to it, 2014′s going to be a bumpy ride.

To wit:

“January 29, 2014 

SMALL PROPERTY OWNERS OF SAN FRANCISCO FILE LAWSUIT TO BLOCK LAW

New Ordinance Would Discriminate Against Families Who Move Into Their Own Buildings 

SAN FRANCISCO, Tuesday, January 28, 2014 – Today, the Small Property Owners of San Francisco Institute filed a lawsuit challenging Supervisor John Avalos’ Nonconforming Unit Ordinance on the grounds that the ordinance violates state law and fails to comply with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

The Nonconforming Unit Ordinance would legalize the practice of renovating and expanding “nonconforming units.” Nonconforming units are “grandfathered” residential units that exceed local zoning laws’ density limits. Controversially, the ordinance would also discriminate against nonconforming units that have been the subject of lawful “no-fault” evictions, which are allowed under state and local law. Such units would be denied building permits for up to 10 years following a lawful eviction – even for regular maintenance and minor repairs. Property owners would also be barred from rebuilding their units after a fire or earthquake.

“This legislation punishes families who move into their own buildings,” stated Noni Richen, president of the Small Property Owners of San Francisco Institute (SPOSFI). “It could cause thousands of lawful housing units to sit vacant while the City denies permits for basic upkeep. Given the current housing shortage, this is unconscionable.”

“As we have shown again and again, we will not allow the City to violate property rights with these illegal schemes,” stated Andrew M. Zacks, SPOSFI’s attorney. “The state’s Ellis Act prohibits this kind of discrimination against lawful evictions. Moreover, cities are required to evaluate a new ordinance’s environmental impacts under CEQA. This legislation was rushed through without proper review.”

Nonconforming units are different from “in-law” units, which are generally unpermitted and illegal. For example, a permitted third unit on a parcel zoned for two units is considered a nonconforming unit. The City Planning Department’s Information and Analysis Group estimates that approximately 52,000 units in the city are nonconforming, comprising some 14% of the city’s housing stock.

A copy of the Nonconforming Unit Ordinance is available at http://zulpc.com/small-property-owners-file-suit-to-block-discriminatory-law/.

The Small Property Owners of San Francisco Institute (“SPOSFI”) is a California nonprofit corporation. SPOSFI advocates for the Small Property Owners of San Francisco, a nonprofit organization that works to promote and preserve home ownership in San Francisco. Its focus is to protect the rights of small property owners and foster opportunities for first-time home buyers. SPOSFI members range from young families to the elderly on fixed incomes, and its membership cuts across all racial, ethnic, and socio-economic strata. Its members include San Francisco residents who own nonconforming residential units in San Francisco.

Zacks & Freedman, P.C. is a law firm dedicated to advocating for the rights of property owners. With experience and knowledge in rent control issues, zoning, permitting, transactional disputes and other real estate matters, Zacks & Freedman, P.C. has successfully advocated its clients’ positions before local administrative tribunals and at all levels of the State and Federal courts.

Hey SFMTA! Why Not “Complete” Polk Street All the Way to Grove and Eliminate These Parking Spaces in Front of City Hall?

Friday, April 26th, 2013

OMG, would you look at this?

I mean check out all these deadly, beastly automobiles parked on Polk, the very same street that the SFMTA is trying to “complete” don’t you know:

Click to expand

I know, why don’t you take out all these spaces and replace them with a separated bike lane or something, SFMTA?

After all, Transit First, right?

Oh, what’s that? These are the spaces that the Board of Supervisors and their aides park in for free every day so that’s where you just happened to end your campaign of completion?

But don’t you care about safety, SFMTA?

Mmmmm….

“This project seeks to implement aesthetic and safety improvements for all users of Polk Street between McAllister and Union Streets. In accordance with the City’s Transit First policy, improvements will primarily be focused on people who walk, use transit and ride a bicycle along Polk Street. The project is funded by Proposition B General Obligation Bonds and is part of an overall citywide effort to curb pedestrian and bicycle collisions and to provide a safe north-south connection for people on bicycles. Pedestrian and bicyclist collision and injury data on Polk Street point to a corridor in need of safety improvements for all those who share the road. In fact, the southern portion from Sacramento to McAllister Streets is part of the 5% of San Francisco streets that have more than half of the City’s most severe pedestrian collisions.”

The Simpsons had a Monorail, We have the America’s Cup: “Benefits” Slashed 90% from $10 Billion

Tuesday, March 12th, 2013

Oh, no no no no no. The original estimate of the “economic benefits” (whatever the Hell that amorphous amorphism means) of the 34th America’s Cup was $9.9 B-as-in-boy billion.

Check it:

So that means that the supposed “benefits” of AC34 have dropped more than 90% as the costs continue to rise.

This mounting scandal is the talk of the town - it’ll be on Forum at 9:00 AM:

“America’s Cup organizers are falling short in their efforts to raise private donations to help pay for the cost of bringing the America’s Cup sailing competition to San Francisco — and that could leave the city on the hook for about $20 million. The Board of Supervisors holds hearings Wednesday to discuss the shortfall. Supporters say even without all of the promised private funds, the city still benefits financially from hosting the America’s Cup.

Host: Michael Krasny 

Guests:

  • Jane Sullivan, city spokesperson for the America’s Cup
  • John Avalos, San Francisco supervisor representing District 11″

In closing, fuck you, you deadbeat Larry Ellison.

And here’s the news from last year:

I understand that Mayor Ed Lee has a cheerleading function as a part of his job. Fine.

But what’s this? What the Hell?

“We expect to have some 500,000 people on a daily basis…” 

Just take a look on the YouTube, at around 9:30 and, mind you, this is AFTER everything blew up and people started realizing that the 2013 America’s Cup won’t be anywhere near as popular as advertised:

So, does Ed Lee actually believe that there’s a chance that the America’s Cup will attract anything close to a half million people “on a daily basis?”

No he does not.

So why does he say it?

Mmmm…

Now, speaking of cheerleading, @olivaglobal is the dude who was hired by the San Francisco Chronicle to promote the America’s Cup over the next 1.5 years. Here he goes:

That est was only for final match wknd. Rainy Tues est is 10K-20K LOL. Srsly look at plan.” 

So what’s the estimate, for real, for the crowd size on a off day during the AC? Appears as if these two AC34 cheerleaders are out of sync.

Now, speaking of studies, what the Hell is The America’s Cup: Economic Impacts of a Match on San Francisco Bay?Is it the “Independent Study” what everybody cites as proof of how great the AC is going to be?

I think it is!

Let’s take a look at the first line:

“The America’s Cup is the world’s third-largest sporting competition, after the Olympics and soccer’s World Cup.”

Here it is in the flesh:

So, let’s think about this here. I guess the bullshit Bay Area Council Economic Institute (BACEI) organization is allowing that the Summer Olympics and the World Cup just might possibly be bigger than an America’s Cup. But what about the Winter Olympics? Oh, and what about the Super Bowl?

Who actually believes that the America’s Cup, that thing where half the staff just got laid off and NBC needs to be paid in order to broadcast, is actually going to be bigger than a Super Bowl?

Nobody.

Not even the cheerleaders.

So why do they say these kinds of things?

All right here’s one more from the messed-up study what’s going to cost the taxpayers of San Francisco tens of millions of dollars. It discusses, and I’m srlsy, the “fleet of super yachts” what are going to be attracted to the bay area due to the America’s Cup, and then it talks about how much money we’re going to make by gassing them up and Windexing the shiny parts and stuff like that.

I’m srsly.

These cheerleaders are members of a modern day Cargo Cult and we’re all along for the ride.

And oh, we’re going to get the Golden State Warriors without funding the stadium at Piers 30-32? All right, so why then are we funding Larry Ellison’s ego trip of a boat race? Why are we allowing Him to get away with this?

I know not.

Screw the America’s Cup.

The world’s most popular sport may be soccer, but in cold, hard dollars, nobody throws a party like the National Football League.

• 1. Super Bowl

• 2. Summer Olympics

• 3. FIFA World Cup

• 4. Daytona 500

• 5. Rose Bowl

• 6. NCAA Men’s Final Four

• 7. Winter Olympics Games

• 8. Kentucky Derby

• 9. World Series

• 10. NBA Finals”

Know Your Inchoate Labor Protests: Tomorrow’s Planned Commercial Office Waste Protest at City Hall Canceled

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

For some reason.

I’ll tell you, those canceled protests are oftentimes more interesting than the ones that go forward…

Check it:

“Commercial Office Buildings Missing the Mark in San Francisco’s Efforts to Achieve Zero Waste

Labor, Environmental Leaders to Release Report Outlining How Commercial Office Buildings Can Achieve True Zero Waste by 2020

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – POSTPONED members the BlueGreen Alliance and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 87 will join with local labor, environmental and civic leaders to release and show support for the report

Making Zero Mean Zero: Waste Diversion in San Francisco’s Commercial Office Buildings.

Findings in the report reveal actions at some of the city’s commercial buildings are hampering the city’s efforts to achieve zero waste and the report outlines recommendations to achieving true zero waste by 2020 — a goal of the city.

The report was prepared by the BlueGreen Alliance — a national partnership of unions and environmental organizations representing 14 million members and supporters.

WHAT: Labor, environmental, and civic leaders call for commercial office buildings owners in San Francisco to reduce waste and increase recycling. The event will feature Spanish speakers.
WHO: BlueGreen Alliance California Director Lisa Hoyos, SEIU Local 87 President Olga Miranda, SEIU Local 87 Members, Supervisor John Avalos (District 11), Interim Supervisor Christina Olague (District 5)
WHEN: POSTPONED
WHERE: In front of San Francisco City Hall”

So, do I think we’re going to have a million electric cars on the road by 2015, as was pledged? Nope!

And do I think that 10% of all trips in San Francisco will be made by bicycle by 2010? Oh, wait, we missed that one already – that got pushed back to 2020, when 20% of all trips made in San Francisco will be made by bicycle, for sure, like totally man, like guaranteed. (And then when that doesn’t happen, the new goal will be 30% of all trips made in San Francisco being made by bicycle by the year 2030.) Anyway, nope!

And now, do I think that all the commercial office buildings of San Francisco will produce “true zero waste” by 2020? Nope!

Anyway, don’t go to City Hall at 11:30 AM tomorrow cause nothing’ll be going on…

Progressives Consider 2012 and Beyond: A “Citywide Gathering” on Thursday, December 15th Called (John) “Avalos for All of Us”

Thursday, December 8th, 2011

From the Harvey Milk Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Democratic Club comes news of meeting that I’m calling Avalos for All of Us.

Check it:

“A Citywide Gathering - Former Avalos Campaign - Thursday, Dec. 15th - 6:30-9pm at 522 Valencia St.

Following the incredible Avalos campaign momentum, what’s next for the progressive movement in 2012 & beyond? What can we learn about the state of our movement from the 2011 Mayors race? What should be common priorities for progressives in 2012? Where can we build unity & be most powerful?

Let us know you are coming. And let us know if you cant come, but want to stay in touch and learn about next steps – at AVALOSFORALLOFUS@GMAIL.COMThis is a broad appeal without any particular formal organizational form, so it is not a ‘decision-making’ meeting but we hope it generates the ideas – both political and organizational — that will continue to build our strength in the city. 522 Valencia is upstairs from the new 518 Valencia: The Eric Quezada Center for Culture & Politics. Check it out at http://518valencia.org/

OK then.

Ah memories: Avalos for Mayor 2011 HQ on the day that the RUN ED RUN kids came by for a visit: 

Click to expand

John Avalos Tweets: “I Have Kids and Read Harry Potter – David Chiu is Peter Pettigrew and Willie Brown is Voldemort”

Friday, November 11th, 2011

Of course the best deleted Tweets in the world were posted at the (now-defunct) @FakeRosePak and (still-active@sdwiener accounts, but let’s see if we can’t add to the canon.

Here’s what was posted at @AvalosSF this AM for just two shakes of a lamb’s tale:

“I have kids and read Harry potter. Chiu is Peter Pettigrew and W B voldemort.”

Oh snap!

I interpret that to read, “David Chiu is Peter Pettigrew and Willie Brown is Lord Voldemort.”*

Correct me if I’m wrong on that.

Artist’s conception of Board President David Chiu as devious and unloyal Peter Pettigrew and He Who Shant Be Named as Lord Voldemort:

Don’t click to expand

Anyway, that evanescent Tweet is gone now, down the Memory Hole.

So leave us forget all about it.

*But who is Harry Potter in this metaphor?

Remembering the Cosco Busan Oil Spill Three Years Later – Turns Out That Everybody was to Blame

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Has it been only three years since the Cosco Busan, the leakiest 2001 Hyundai ever, spilled 58,000 gallons of bunker fuel* into the bay? Seems longer.

Anyway, turns out that a dude who supposed to be up front looking out for stuff in the pea soup fog was downstairs in the galley eating breakfast. I did not know that, no sir. Of course, the idea to depart on sked despite the fog came from the bar pilot, so that’s the person who’s primarily responsible. But there still plenty of blame to go around. Deets below.

Screeeeeeeeeeeeeeeech!

Click to expand

All right, it’s Blame Time:

The National Transportation Safety Board determined the following probable causes of the accident:

- the pilot’s degraded cognitive performance from his use of prescription medications, despite his completely clean post accident drug test,
- the absence of a comprehensive pre-departure master/pilot exchange and a lack of effective communication between Pilot John Cota and Master Mao Cai Sun during the accident voyage, and
- (COSCO Busan Master) Sun’s ineffective oversight of Cota’s piloting performance and the vessel’s progress.

Other contributing factors included:

- the failure of Fleet Management Ltd. to train the COSCO Busan crewmembers (which led to such acts of gross negligence as the bow lookout eating breakfast in the galley instead of being on watch) and Fleet Management’s failure to ensure that the crew understood and complied with the company’s safety management system;
- the failure of Caltrans to maintain foghorns on the bridge which were silent despite the heavy fog;
- the failure of Vessel Traffic Safety (VTS) to alert Cota and Sun that they were headed for the tower. VTS is legally required to alert a vessel if an accident appears imminent, yet they remained silent;
- the malfunctioning radar on the COSCO Busan, which led Captains Cota and Sun to use an electronic chart for the rest of the voyage. Although Coast Guard investigators found the radar to be in working order, they did not examine it until days after the accident (allowing time for faulty equipment to be fixed, which is not uncommon after a marine accident)
- Captain Sun’s incorrect identification of symbols on the electronic chart;
- the U.S. Coast Guard’s failure to provide adequate medical oversight of Cota, in view of the medical and medication information he had reported to the Coast Guard

Happy Anniversary, Cosco Busan, or should I say MSC Venezia? Don’t ever come back.

The patched-up ship finally hits the road, back in aught-seven – this was the last time we’ll ever see the Cosco Busan in the Bay Area, most likely:

*Yeah, Wiki is still wrong on that gallonage figure, partly due to the U.S. Coast Guard sitting on information for months and months ’cause they didn’t want to earn themselves any more bad press.

Cosco Busan Oil Spill Endgame: Chinese-Based Fleet Management Ltd. to pay $10 Mil.

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Here’s the news from the boys and girls at Justice, below.

Patched up and riding high – the last time we saw the Cosco Busan back in 2007. Will it ever come back? She’s called the MSC Venezia these days, currently working in the Canaries.

Oh well, she’s not the first Hyundai to leak oil into San Francsico Bay, and she won’t be the last.

The full release, after the jump

(more…)

“Coast Guard Scoops Up Oil in San Francisco Bay” – Really AP, Really?

Saturday, October 31st, 2009

The news of the day from the Associated Press: Coast Guard scoops up oil in San Francisco Bay

Except that the smallest branch of the United States military doesn’t actually scoop up spilled oil in San Francisco Bay - there’s a whole industry dedicated to doing that. And if you listen to the Coast Guard, they’ll tell you that, ad nauseum. Oh well.

The Coasties are handling this spill better than that one from the Cosco Busan. Hurray! That’s good practice for The Big Oil Spill in our future:

IMG_9658 copy

The Pacific Responder and the Ocean Liberty, along with smaller vessels, are out there right now, between San Francisco and the tip of Alameda Island that’s, oddly enough, also part of the City of San Francisco.

Anyway, the USCG don’t scoop up oil.

And keep up the good work, 11th District. Just try to resist the urge to lie to us for no reason, and you’ll do fine.  

go8f5874aa-copy

Carry on…

Candidate John Avalos Leads an Army of Supporters in the Excelsior

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

District 11 Supervisorial candidate John Avalos has an army of enthusiastic supporters that, literally, money can’t buy.

Of course you can pay people to help you out, but pound for pound, the best assistance you can get comes from committed volunteers.

A scene from Mission Street: 

John preparing for another ride in D11 with supporters.   

In these days of Instant Runoff Voting, it can be hard to hazard a guess as to who might win this election tomorrow but, after travelling up and down a short stretch of Mission in the Excelsior District, it’s apparent that Avalos is handily winning the battle of the campaigns.