Posts Tagged ‘empowersf’

Hollywood Has OSCAR Awards, San Francisco Has NIMBY Awards – 2011 NEN (Nimbys Empowering Nimbys) Awards

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

[UPDATE: Ooh, word on the street is that there'll be a special award for the San Francisco League of Urban Gardeners. Let's hope this rumour proves out!]

At City Hall:

Click to expand

And best of all, these awards are sponsored by the good people at PG&E, who mostly never kill anybody, mostly.

Leave us not forget the NIMBY Empowerment Act of 2006:

The NEN offers a new paradigm of collaboration which redefines the role of government from “manager” to “partner.” By re-aligning expectations and investing in capacity building resources, the goal is to return residents to their rightful role of stewards of the community.”

(Uh, NIMBY says what now? Moving on.)

All right, read this sentence fragment three times and then try to define what the word “empowerment” means. I defy you:

Empowerment Institute is the world’s premiere consulting and training organization specializing in the methodology of empowerment. Its state-of-the-art empowerment…”

(“State-of-the-art?” Shouldn’t that be “world-class” instead? I get my tired, corporate-speak cliches mixed up.)

But let’s see, who’s winning a pretigious NIMBY this year? Well, how about the Divisadero Corridor (aka DivCo), for one, as Comeback Neighborhood of the Year, or something. (Has the DivCo really changed all that much the past year? No, not all. Oh well.)

Now, how about last year?

“The San Francisco Department of Public Works’s Deputy Director, Mohammed Nuru, was awarded the Most Empowering City Employee Award for his dedication to San Francisco’s neighborhoods and years of work in preserving and maintaining San Francisco’s urban space. “Mr. Nuru is the go-to person in the City of SF for infrastructure projects. If you need a fence, sign or election* fix, Mr. Nuru can help you get it done,” said SF resident Gillian Gillette.”

So there’s no corruption here, then, huh? Pick a graf, any graf:

Nuru also volunteered for Brown’s re-election campaign in 1999, he testified. In that election, The Chronicle reported, three former SLUG employees say Nuru told them their jobs depended on Brown’s re-election and required them to walk precincts, attend rallies and work phones for Brown’s campaign while they were supposed to be cleaning streets.”

“In 2000, Brown hired Nuru to the No. 2 job at Department of Public Works, the 1,500-employee agency responsible for maintaining streets, sewers, public buildings and trees. Nuru was nominally the top aide to director Ed Lee. But employees believed the real power was Nuru, who boasted of his ties to the mayor and sometimes met with Brown without Lee.”

“Nuru quoted Brown as calling DPW’s management “a bunch of racists that were discriminating and holding people back.” Nuru vowed to “get rid of those white managers,” Cone said.”

“In an interview, Humphreys contended that in his early days at DPW, Nuru also ordered city workers to clean up a privately owned, debris-strewn vacant lot near Nuru’s home north of Candlestick Park. Humphreys put the cost of the cleanup at $40,000, and said it violated policies on the use of public resources at DPW.”

“Last fall, DPW asked the mayor’s Office of Community Development for $70, 000 to clean up a debris-strewn, city-owned lot four doors from Nuru’s home. City records show Nuru as the original DPW contact on the request.”

“As Cone later testified, SLUG wanted the city to pay consulting fees of $250 per hour to a retired DPW official who once oversaw the SLUG contract. Cone rejected the $5,863 invoice. Cone said he balked at a $25,000 bill for SLUG uniforms, including bib overalls and baseball caps. Cory Calandra, Nuru’s replacement at SLUG, wrote in a letter that uniforms were needed because SLUG crews “must live up to the reputation of San Francisco as a world class city.”

“I have pancreatic cancer,” he said. “I’ve had a good run, but I’m finished. I have no hatred for Mr. Nuru, but I do want to see DPW get back on track, and I’d like to see the taxpayers get what they’re paying for.”

I’m sure you’ll enjoy your big night, NEN:

GTH, NEN. TTFN.

* One-Word Parody Alert – you know, something “created to mock, comment on, or trivialise an original work, its subject, author, style, or some other target**.”

** The investigation found that while at DPW, Nuru directed employees of the nonprofit he had previously led – the San Francisco League of Urban Gardeners – to campaign for candidates in the 2003 mayors and district attorneys races. City-funded nonprofits are prohibited from using those funds to campaign.”