Posts Tagged ‘reporters’

Assignment Desk for Monday Morning, September 23rd, 2013 – Octavia Strike, Emirates Air, Bicycle Stings…

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

1. Hey, is a there a cracking large picket line* of construction workers at San Francisco’s failed Octavia “Boulevard” and Haight Street going on these days? Hell yes! Does it get started early in the AM? Apparently. Does it go 24-7? IDK. Does it sometime go around the block where a new building is going in?? Yes, with some people visible at Octavia and Market. This one writes itself, people!

2. Is there an empty jumbo jet from Emirates Airline just sitting around at SFO, just waiting to take Emirates Team New Zealand back Down Under except, uh oh, the team just can’t get its ninth victory in the America’s Cup Finals? Is it bad juju to plan on winning like this? (Some on the Team think so.) Or is it good planning? IDK. Anyway, I’d be looking for a big old honking Airbus A380 or a late-model Boeing 777. I mean, Emirates flies out of SFO all the time (they want to be the “hub for the world” and they just might make it someday) but they don’t have scheduled flights to NZ, that’s for sure. (Perhaps they always have a plane available for standby IDK)

3. The media covering the 34th America’s Cup boat race had no freaking idea that this debacle could go on for so long so they’ve lost their hotel reservations to the hard-charging Oracle OpenWorld convention? Isn’t it ironic, dontcha think? How is the AC having an economic impact if the town is full? What about the poor kiwi fans? Are they sleeping on couches these days? What about their plane tickets home?

4. The penalty for going outside of the America’s Cup rubric (basically meaning going straight to the New York Supreme Court, which confusingly is not the highest in that state) is that you lose the Cup. Well, if Larry Ellison has already lost the Auld Mug, say by next week, say by a very narrow margin, well then Katie bar the door. Remember the cheating penalty came from the International Jury that was set up by one LE and it was meant to punish not just the cheating but the environment allowed by management that is associated with the actions of all those people who were involved. LE has been involved in four ACs and he’s lost two of them so far. The time that he won he won in court, oh well. Oh and is there some international tax situation going on with Team NZ? Something to do with where certain people earn their pay. Maybe the International Jury will hear about this before this Cup ends? Just a rumour, Love.

5. Folsom Street inbound at 6th has been “improved” by SFGov in the recent past? Compare it with Folsom at 5th and Folsom at Fourth. I believe the yellow zebra stripes are au currant these days so that’s a clue. Now that right-turning truck was supposed to have pulled into the right lane, but is it a full lane? No it’s not. It’s been narrowed by the pedestrian bulb-out on the south side of the intersection, the place where that cyclist recently died in a collision. Did the bulb-out contribute to that death? Are bulb-outs bad for cyclists? Are they good for peds? Anyway, we don’t hear about similar deaths at old-school, unimproved 5th and Folsom…

6. The bicycle “sting” operations of citing cyclists for using the SFBC-approved Wiggle Route in the Lower Haight are back, baby. I don’t know if it’s every day that they do this, but last week two motorcycle cops had field days (as in more than one day, like on 9-17 and 9-20 for sure). Officer R. Scott parks his motorcycle and then points to all those people coming up from Duboce Park “1,2,3,4,5,6,” he says. Then everybody has to wait until he processes all the tickets for blowing the stop sign at Waller and Steiner, for instance. He says he’d rather be out answering the calls he gets on his radio, like an alleged hammer attack. Then he’ll talk about his Porsche. He’s extremely chill. So The CW Nevius and Stanley Roberts have been out there the past year, but the past week, well it’s been pretty intense, a renewed effort. I thought that the SFPD was giving up on this.

Ready steady go!

* What in the Hell is this, from

Historic Context Statement
Market and Octavia Neighborhood Plan Area
San Francisco, California?

http://www.sf-planning.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=4688

Our Planning Department planned Octavia for picket lines???

“Picket lines, for instance, are a spatial expression of a labor grievance.”

WTF is this?

Hey, why not plan for the 24-7 traffic jam that’s there now? Why not plan for the traffic deaths _you_ caused, Planning Dept? Why not cancel left turns on Market and Octavia, you know to increase transit speed at the expense of the wealthy car drivers who live in Hayes Valley?

Anyway, have at it:

“Since labor conflict, whether internal or external, is often expressed in spatial terms, the built
environment of the workplace must be seen as an integral factor in the understanding of labor
disputes. Picket lines, for instance, are a spatial expression of a labor grievance. The questions of
precisely where picketers may or may not stand, whether they may block an entrance, how closely
they can approach ongoing work activities, and who may cross the line, are fundamental in the
conduct and resolution of a dispute. Contestation of these issues can lead to physical confrontations
or criminal penalties, and may determine the outcome of the conflict.
The relatively small scale of the built environment in the Industrial Employment Study Area had
advantages for strike activities. Picketers could assemble on public sidewalks immediately adjacent to
the business being struck, rather than being kept at a distance by fences or buffer zones on company
property. Likewise, the limited number of entrances to most of the buildings made it easier for
strikers to monitor access and inform visitors that the business was being struck. More generally, the
absence of street setbacks and the open design of the buildings allowed for easy surveillance of the
workplace. With the vehicular doors open, an observer could survey the entire shop in many of these
buildings. This facilitated monitoring who was working and what work was being done—valuable
information for union organizing or the conduct of a strike, as well as for individuals seeking work.
175 The term “open shop” refers to a situation where union membership is not a requirement for employment. In practice,
it generally describes conditions in which union membership actually disqualifies one for employment.
176 The term CIO originally stood for the Committee on Industrial Organization, a subgroup within the AFL. In 1937, the
group was expelled from the AFL. From that time until the two merged in 1955, CIO stood for Congress of Industrial
Unions. Since the merger, the resulting organization is known as the AFL/CIO.
177 The ACWA and ILGWU belonged to the “social unionism” wing of the CIO. Within th

“NBC Bay Area” Expands Investigative Reporting Capabilities – Tony Kovaleski and Jenna Susko Join KNTV – Hurray!

Friday, November 11th, 2011

Well this is different. Legacy bay area media institution KNTV is is actually adding investigative reporters to the payroll.

Get all the deets below.

I’ll tell you, I’m getting a Dan Noyes, quasi-in-yo-face vibe from both these newcomers.

Here’s Tony Kovaleski, on the left, going after a purported “Guido” executive at Pebble Beach:

Via Denver Westword

And here’s lovely Jenna Susko – oh man, she’s not afraid to ask questions as this highlight reel amply demonstrates:

Bon Courage, Tony Kovaleski!

Bon Courage, Jenna Susko!

All the deets:

“NBC Bay Area Expands Investigative Reporting Capabilities - Award-Winning Investigative Reporter Tony Kovaleski To Lead New Investigative Team - Jenna Susko Joins Station As Investigative Reporter

SAN JOSE, Calif., Nov. 11, 2011 — NBC Bay Area today announced that it has added two investigative reporters to the station’s news staff, significantly increasing the station’s investigative reporting capabilities in advance of launching a new unit early next year.

Bay Area native Tony Kovaleski joins NBC Bay Area to lead the station’s investigative team after working at television stations in Phoenix, Houston and Denver.  While in Denver, Kovaleski exposed problems with emergency services at Denver’s airport and uncovered inappropriate gifts given to government appointees.  Kovaleski’s reports resulted in significant changes in airport operations and in tighter regulations governing gifts and travel.  As the winner of the prestigious Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia award in 2010, the national Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Journalism, the Sigma Delta Chi award, the National Headliner award and more than 26 Emmy Awards including this year’s Emmy for Investigative Journalism, he is considered one of the country’s premiere investigative reporters.  Kovaleski is a graduate of San Jose State University with a degree in Journalism.

Investigative reporter Jenna Susko comes to NBC Bay Area after working at television stations in the southeastern United States.  She has built a reputation for quality investigative reporting with stories about poor oversight of FEMA funds across the Gulf Coast, mismanagement in a court system allowing criminals to easily get cases dismissed and security flaws at a local school system.  Susko has a degree from Florida State University in Communications and English Literature.

“As we increase our investment in high-quality local journalism, we are very pleased to welcome these two investigative journalists to the Bay Area and into our newsroom,” said Richard Cerussi, President and General Manager of NBC Bay Area.  ”Tony and Jenna are the first of many new team members who will allow us to bring Bay Area viewers more of the kind of in-depth investigations that result in positive change.”

About NBC Owned Television Stations

NBC Owned Television Stations is the division of NBCUniversal that includes 10 local television stations and their digital channels and websites, as well as a group of out-of-home properties and a production company.  The 10 stations produce and deliver compelling and unique local news, information and entertainment programming to viewers in the communities they serve, which include New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Area, Dallas-Fort Worth, Washington, D.C., Miami, San Diego and Connecticut, with a goal of connecting to their audiences anytime and anywhere.”

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

140 Gather at City Hall in Support of Euna Lee and Laura Ling

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

This was the scene tonight at the steps of San Francisco’s City Hall, where a crowd of 140 offered their support for Euna Lee and Laura Ling. The people at the vigil called on North Korea to release these jailed reporters.

“We miss you” “Liberate Laura & Euna Now” “Set them free”

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Supervisor Erica Mar was on the scene along with many City Hall staffers. Read an account from Marisa Lagos here and Jared Grigsby here.

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Details after the jump.

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