Posts Tagged ‘illegal’

How the SFPD Parks to Buy Just One Thing at Trader Joe’s #100 on Masonic

Monday, July 7th, 2014

Which is sort of funny.

At first I thought this could have been part of traffic enforcement, but it turned out to be a quick TJ’s run.

And this was after the officer beeped (not with a regular car horn, but with the loud, low growling noise that these cars can make whatever that’s called) at a pedestrian, for some unapparent reason, unless it was a routine beep to say Here I Come On The Sidewalk, Look Out Peds!

In mitigation, the officer didn’t park in a stall at the mostly-unused Lucky Penny parking lot at Geary, seen camera right.

And this technique is a lot more efficient than queuing up for a space at the badly-engineered TJ’s lot.

And this parking job didn’t block traffic at all.

Anyway, I’ve never seen this before – it’s kind of a funny way to park, IMO.

Cf. ” Mayor Ed Lee Can’t Stop Parking Illegally.”

Transit First for Thee/

But Not For Me!

The Outer Richmond District: Where Every Day is Christmas and Every Night is New Year’s Eve – Parking on the “Lawn”

Monday, July 7th, 2014

When SFGov hasn’t the will to enforce the laws and regs it enacts and you ask them about it, a  govt rep will start talking  about “complaint-driven” enforcement.

And that means no enforcement at all.

So feel free to pave over your front yard and then paint your brand-new parking spaces in alternating red and green, you know, to celebrate, Christmas-style:

(Actually, the most exciting time in the Outer Richmond is the evening of the Fourth of July and the morning of the Fifth of July, what with the illegal fireworks and all…)

Oh Outer Richmond:

You’ve got the biggest heart
Sometimes I think you’re just too good for me
Every day is Christmas, and every night is New Year’s Eve
Will you keep on loving me
Will you keep on, will you keep on
Bringing out the best in me?

San Francisco Bicycle Riders Demonstrate the Idaho Stop at the Bottom of a Steep Hill

Monday, July 7th, 2014

A “California Stop” occurs when a driver or cyclist slows down for a stop sign, but does not come to a full stop at any particular instant. This certainly is an aspect of traffic culture in San Francisco and it’s one that’s tolerated by the SFPD. For example, motorcycle-riding cops will sometimes lie in wait on Pierce as car after car commits a California Stop coming down Alamo Heights on Fulton. Maybe ten people go through without incident but then somebody rolls through at 7 MPH and the driver gets pulled over. Just watch the police themselves cruising around in cars and on bikes to see how fast they go past the red octagon, depending on traffic, visibility, time of day, etc. California Stops aren’t tolerated as much in other places, such as the small towns of Marin County. And, oh yes, this approach is also known as an “Oklahoma Stop” in other parts of the country.

OTOH, an “Idaho Stop” occurs when a cyclist doesn’t slow down at all for a stop sign.

Thusly, near Twin Peaks:

Look for Idaho Stops in the Lower Haight area, where many fixed gear riders maintain the same pace whether cycling past stop signs or not.

Some people in San Francisco want Idaho Stops to be legal in San Francisco.

Would that be a good thing?

Dennis Herrera Throws Down: Tells “Monkey Parking” to Drop Mobile App for Auctioning City Parking Spots – $300 Fines?

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

[UPDATE: SFist (lots of comments already), Slate, and the San Francisco Chronicle are on the case.]

Gotta say I sort of saw this one coming.

And it’s not just Monkey Parking that’s in trouble today. Check out the craigslist ad from ParkModo (cached website) (@ParkModo – no Tweets yet, or maybe they were deleted?), posted on June 17th, 2014:

Earn $13.00 P/H Just To Park! (mission district)

Our company is launching an awesome app that rewards people to sell their on-street parking spots before leaving to people who need a spot.

To help us promote the app, we are looking for 20 people with cars and iPhones to park around the mission and use the app to offer their parking spots to people looking for parking.

The hours will be from 5:30-9:00 pm Thurs-Sat starting June 26th.

This is how it works:

1. You download the app from the app store.
2. When you want to work, you will contact our field manager to check in.
3. The field manager will then instruct you as to what area and type of spot you are to park in.
4. You will then find a spot in the area and park.
5. Once you are parked, using the app, you will offer the spot for sale. 
6. While you are waiting for someone to purchase the space, you will distribute postcards and promote the app.
7. Once someone purchases the spot, you will complete the transaction with the buyer and then find another space to park in and start the process all over again!

If you are interested, please click on the link below (Paste into your browser) and provide your information so we can contact you and get you started.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1To5Ck5FrPBMrh35SvJp-WDRg0WDyaLLyuo1_MS8pyV8/viewform?usp=send_form

We look forward to working with you!”

I think ParkModo’s operations will now be on hold, for a little bit at least. But do you want some more from them? See below.

Now, all the deets about all these troubled businesses, from Herrera’s office:

“Herrera tells Monkey Parking to drop mobile app for auctioning city parking spots

Motorists face $300 fines for each violation under existing law, City Attorney says — and three startups could be liable for penalties of up to $2,500 for each transaction

SAN FRANCISCO (June 23, 2014) — San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera today issued an immediate cease-and-desist demand to Monkey Parking, a mobile peer-to-peer bidding app that enables motorists to auction off the public parking spaces their vehicles occupy to nearby drivers.   The app, currently available for iOS devices, describes itself on the Apple iTunes App Store as the “the first app which lets you make money every time that you are about to leave your on-street parking spot.”

The letter Herrera’s office issued this morning to Paolo Dobrowolny, CEO of the Rome, Italy-based tech startup, cites a key provision of San Francisco’s Police Code that specifically prohibits individuals and companies from buying, selling or leasing public on-street parking.  Police Code section 63(c) further provides that scofflaws — including drivers who “enter into a lease, rental agreement or contract of any kind” for public parking spots — face administrative penalties of up to $300 for each violation.  Because Monkey Parking’s business model is wholly premised on illegal transactions, the letter contends that the company would be subject to civil penalties of up to $2,500 per violation under California’s tough Unfair Competition Law were the city to sue.  Such a lawsuit would be imminent, Herrera’s office vowed, should the startup continue to operate in San Francisco past July 11, 2014.

Technology has given rise to many laudable innovations in how we live and work — and Monkey Parking is not one of them,” Herrera said.  “It’s illegal, it puts drivers on the hook for $300 fines, and it creates a predatory private market for public parking spaces that San Franciscans will not tolerate.  Worst of all, it encourages drivers to use their mobile devices unsafely — to engage in online bidding wars while driving.  People are free to rent out their own private driveways and garage spaces should they choose to do so.  But we will not abide businesses that hold hostage on-street public parking spots for their own private profit.”

Herrera’s cease-and-desist demand to Monkey Parking includes a request to the legal department of Apple Inc., which is copied on the letter, asking that the Cupertino, Calif.-based technology giant immediately remove the mobile application from its App Store for violating several of the company’s own guidelines.  Apple App Store Review Guidelines provide that “Apps must comply with all legal requirements in any location where they are made available to users” and that “Apps whose use may result in physical harm may be rejected.”

Two other startups that similarly violate local and state law with mobile app-enabled schemes intended to illegally monetize public parking spaces in San Francisco will also face legal action in the form of cease-and-desist demands this week, according to the City Attorney’s Office.  Sweetch charges a $5 flat fee when its users obtain a parking spot from another Sweetch motorist.  Sweetch drivers who pass their spots off to other Sweetch members are refunded $4 of that fee.  ParkModo, which appears poised to launch later this week, according to recent employment postings on Craigslist, will employ drivers at a rate of $13.00 per hour to occupy public parking spaces in the Mission District.  As with Monkey Parking and Sweetch, ParkModo then plans to sell the on-street parking spots to its paying members through its iPhone app.  Sweetch and ParkModo members who make use of the apps to park in San Francisco are also subject to civil penalties of $300 per violation, and both companies are potentially liable for civil penalties of $2,500 per transaction for illegal business practices under the Cali04fornia Unfair Competition Law.

A copy of Herrera’s demand letter to Monkey Parking and additional information about the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office is available at: http://www.sfcityattorney.org/.”

And here’s a little more from ParkModo:

“We are currently rolling out the beta in the following cities…

San Francisco – As beautiful as city it is, parking is just as bad! Not only is there way to much demand for the supply, but the parking police will catch you if they can! Be among the first 1000 people to download the app and get $5 in free parking!

New York – Instead of calling it the city that never sleeps, they should call it the city that never has parking! Get in on ParkModo and earn some serious cash and stop wasting your time. We know every minute in ny is precious.

Chicago – There may be wind here, but there is certainly no parking! Use ParkModo and fly like the wind when you need a space!”

Here’s How San Mateo Handles Day Laborers: Huge Signs Telling You Where To Go To Find Them

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

Thusly, just off the 101

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This place has been around for a long time.

Of course, some cry foul:

Virginia Kice, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, the arm of the federal government in charge of enforcing the nation’s immigration laws, said her office is focused on fighting terrorism, but still wants employers to know they are violating laws and subject to sanctions if they hire people who are not authorized to work in the country — including the workers from the San Mateo center. “That said, our primary concerns now are fighting human smuggling, counterfeit employment documentation and helping ensure domestic security,” Kice said.

Photo: A Game of Frogger But In Real Life on Masonic in Front of Trader Joe’s #100 – Who Will Be The Next To Die?

Monday, June 9th, 2014

These people parked across the street from our popular Trader Joes on Masonic, as many people do, ’cause the TJ’s parking lot is too small, ’cause that’s what nearby residents wanted.

Our Planning Department created this disaster and then moved on to more important work, such as the failed 8 Washington project, oh well.

Fixes have been tried, but still we’ve got this parade of customers jaywalking back and forth across this stretch of 30 MPH Masonic, thusly, from a few days back:

Click to expand

Cars were coming in the fast lanes both northbound and southbound, so their only choice was to wait for the black car to pass and then sprint behind it.

This game has been going on for years, with many shoppers playing, and some getting hit by vehicles.

And the Richmond District’s Biggest Illegal Parking Violator is … Giorgio’s Pizzeria, 151 Clement Street

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

When I come across Giorgio of Giorgio’s Pizzeria, I’ll say, “Hey Gio, how come you ain’t got no brothers up on the wall here?”

And then, regardless of the answer, I’ll follow up with a question about why he doesn’t arrange for a place to park his Prius and whatever delivery vehicles, you know, legally.

Click to expand

(In mitigation, this joint is a viable institution of the Richmond District and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it if you’re looking for an old-school pizza place out in the Avenues…)

San Francisco’s Appointed Mayor Ed Lee Talks About Raising the Minimum Wage, But Election Day Poll Workers Make Less Than That – Why?

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

All right, c’mon, “Apply to be a Poll Worker!

Attend one training class that will clearly explain Poll Worker duties.”

“All Poll Workers must arrive at the polling place no later than 6:00 a.m. on Election Day. Although the polls officially close at 8:00 p.m., Election Day does not end until all materials have been picked up (usually around 9:00 p.m. or 9:30 p.m.). There will be meal breaks during the day. 

So let’s do the math:

Training in Civic Center before the election: 3 hours or so.

Game Day: 15.5 hours, less breaks = 8 hours straight time and let’s say 6.5 hours of OT at time-and-a-half

So what’s that, 3+8+6.5+3.25 = 20.75 effective hours of work?

Multiplying by the official City and County minimum wage of $10.74 yields $222.86 total pay.

And using the vaunted $15 per hour minimum promised by quasi-governmental spokesperson and noted Berkeleyite Randy Shaw, we arrive at $311.25.

And what is appointed Mayor Ed Lee offering these poor souls? Well apparently no pay at all for the mandatory training, and then:

“Depending on your assignment, Poll Workers are paid between $142 and $195  for working on Election Day.”

Is this a joke, you ask?

No, Gentle Reader, it’s not. They’re srsly.

I cry foul.

In any event, if you’re an inspector you can make  a bit more, but then you gotta deal with high school seniors with their Katy Perry and cell phones and whathaveyou. They’re intelligent, you know, but lazy. And if their work doesn’t add up the way it should shortly after 8 PM, well that’s tough cookies – you’ll hear the beep beeps from the waiting cars and then the kids are gone and you, the vaunted elections inspector, will be left to fix things up.

Anyway, you get something like this for your troubles …

…but you won’t get minimum wage.

Now why is that?

The Perfect Parking Solution for San Francisco? A Simple Sign – “IN YOUR WAY? SORRY! CALL ME, I’LL MOVE – (415) xxx-xxxx”

Monday, May 5th, 2014

Here you go:

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I first started seeing these signs just last month, but they remind of those people I’ve heard and seen over the years who block you in and then leave a note on the windshield, you know, “Oh just call me at…” But the thing is that these people never pick up, that’s the thing.

Now let’s apply this to BART or MUNI, maybe change the words a bit and put them on a T-shirt what says:

“FEELING YOU UP? SORRY! TELL ME, I’LL STOP”

In other words, you’re not “sorry!” at all, you bastards.

Oh well.

Is Riding Your Bike Up Masonic on Excessively Wide Sidewalks a Good Idea? Just Ask These Two, or Most Everybody Else

Friday, May 2nd, 2014

The answer is hell to the yes, hombre/a.

This is how most people do it, actually. Some use the northbound sidewalks starting around Fulton and then they get back where they belong on the street when they get past Turk, where things flatten out near the blood bank, is what some people do.

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The SFMTA or some other alphabet soup org is going to change Masonic fairly soon, based upon surveys of people 70% of whom just happened to be/have been members of the local bicycle coalition, and somehow this makes the proposed changes “non-controversial,” or something.

MUNI will run slower, that’s for sure.