Posts Tagged ‘SFPUC’

“I would not call it less pure at all. I would call it very high quality water,” says SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

This has got to be the SFGov PR blunder of the year 2014:

I would not call it less pure at all. I would call it very high quality water,” says SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water in a press conference in response to @sfexaminer story pic.twitter.com/dDme0raWw7

I don’t see how you’re going to able to top that.

A Modest Proposal for Steve Ritchie of the SFPUC: Let’s Start Paying Ten Percent of His Salary with Monopoly Money

Monday, April 28th, 2014

From Jessica Kwong of the San Francisco Examiner:

SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water Steve Ritchie in a press conference in response to @sfexaminer story pic.twitter.com/dDme0raWw7

 ”‘I would not call it less pure at all. I would call it very high quality water,’ says SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water”

And oh, here we go:

“Blending contaminated SF groundwater with Hetch Hetchy supply makes it safe to drink, experts say” by Chris Roberts

You see how that works? The groundwater sources that the SFPUC wants to provide to us don’t pass muster with the Feds as drinking water. So they want to cut it with Hetch Hetchy water and then, and only then, will it meet standards.

Our drinking water will become less pure, right? I mean, that’s the whole plan, that’s the what the SFPUC has decided to do to save money, for better or worse.

Comes now, SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water Steve Ritchie to state: I would not call it less pure at all.”

All right, well, the reason why SFGov can’t pay Steve Ritchie his inflated, six-figure salary with Monopoly money is because it doesn’t pass muster with the Feds as lawful currency. But what if we cut it with real money, so Steve Ritchie ends up with his salary being paid with 90% real money and 10% fake money?

I wouldn’t call that a pay cut at all. I would call that a “very high-quality” salary, one well above whatever our Federal government requires for the minimum wage.

What say you to that, Steve Ritchie?

A “Ten Percent Request” – The SFPUC Would Like to Lecture You About Water Conservation During These Dry Times

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Which is fair enough.

“SFPUC General Manager Harlan Kelly’s Statement on Voluntary, 10% Water Conservation Request

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – San Francisco Public Utilities Commission General Manager Harlan Kelly issued the following statement today regarding a request for customers to voluntarily curtail water use by 10%.

“On Friday, January 31st, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission will ask customers of the Hetch Hetchy Regional Water System to voluntarily curtail water consumption by at least 10%. Over the next few days, I will be working closely with Mayor Ed Lee, San Francisco city departments and our Bay Area wholesale customers to develop strategies to meet this water conservation goal.
I believe voluntary water conservation efforts are the best way to avert mandatory cutbacks and other water restrictions should drought conditions persist.”

A formal announcement and media availability will take place on Friday. Details will be made available in a press advisory the day prior. The SFPUC provides reliable, high quality drinking water to 2.6 million people in San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Alameda Counties.

As always, the SFPUC encourages our customers to conserve water. Here are some helpful tips to conserve water around the house.

1.    Turn off the faucet when you are brushing your teeth or doing the dishes – save 2 gallons per minute.
2.    Take shorter showers. Each minute you cut saves 2.5 gallons. Make sure you or your property owner have installed a high-efficiency showerhead.
3.    Operate your clothes and dishwashers with full loads only, even if the machine has an adjustable load setting.
4.    Use a broom to clean sidewalks, driveways and pavement instead of using a hose.
5.    Reduce outdoor watering needs by planting species appropriate for the Bay Area’s dry climate.
6.    Water during the cool part of the day. Reduce evaporation by watering lawns and plants only at night or early morning before dawn.
7.    Detect leaks. Do you hear the toilet running or your faucet dripping? Contact the SFPUC or your local water agency for information on locating your water meter and detecting plumbing leaks using meter readings. Conducting a dye-test in toilet tanks can identify costly silent leaks.
8.    Install aerators on bathroom and kitchen sinks to reduce indoor water use by about 4%.
9.    Many Bay Area water utilities provide a number of efficient conservation plumbing fixtures for free. The SFPUC provides free faucet aerators, low-flow showerheads and garden spray nozzles to San Francisco residents. Pickup in person with proof of address at 525 Golden Gate Avenue, San Francisco – Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
10.    Replace your old toilet, the largest water user inside your home. New high-efficiency toilet models flush at 1.3 gallons or less compared to older models, which use up to 7 gallons per flush. Bay Area water agencies offer cash rebates for the purchase of select high-efficiency toilets.
11.    Replace your clothes washer, the second largest water user in your home. High efficiency clothes washers can reduce water and energy use by 40%. Bay Area water agencies offer cash rebates for the purchase of select high-efficiency clothes washers.

Updates and additional information will be available at sfwater.org/supplyupdate.

Oh No, Now Even Our San Francisco Zoo is Working Blue – “The Scoop on Poop” Opens January 25th 2014

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

Taking a cue from our naughty, naughty PUC, your San Francisco Zoo has a new exhibition called The Scoop on Poop.

I’m appalled.

But your kids will love it.

And afterwards, check out the brand-new ELINOR FRIEND PLAYGROUND.

All right, see you there!

All the deets:

The Scoop on Poop! Opening Day

Special Members-Only Preview: January 25, 9:00 – 10:00 am
Open to Public: January 25, 10:00 am in the Pachyderm Building

Poop. Doo-doo. Dung. Number 2. No matter what you call it, you’ll be able to learn all about it at The Scoop on Poop, our latest special exhibition on view in the Pachyderm Building. Based on a popular children’s book by the same name by Dr. Wayne Lynch, The Scoop on Poop leads visitors on an investigation of what poop is and how animals and humans use it.

Animals use poop to build homes, hide from enemies, attract mates, send messages, and cool off – some even eat it! Veterinarians, farmers, naturalists, paleontologists, Maasai tribesmen, and power companies use it, too. Poop is a scientific puzzle, and with a little detective work, you can learn a lot about an animal by what it leaves behind.

Ever more deets, after the jump

(more…)

Incredibly, Official San Francisco Celebrates the Destruction of Hetch Hetchy Valley – 100 Years of Raker Act

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

Here’s the real story.

And here’s today’s feel-good press release from SFGov:

“The Pen That Changed the Bay Area Forever

Bay Area Leaders Celebrate the Centennial of the Raker Act with a New City Hall Exhibit

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Today, Bay Area leaders joined the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) to celebrate the centennial of the signing of the Raker Act into law at a ceremony at San Francisco City Hall.  The ceremony concluded with the unveiling of a new City Hall exhibit featuring the pen that President Woodrow Wilson used to sign the legislation 100 years ago today.

“The Raker Act enabled the construction of the Hetch Hetchy Regional Water System and Hetch Hetchy Power System,” said SFPUC General Manager Harlan Kelly. “Once President Wilson signed the act into law, the San Francisco Bay Area began to construct a public water system that now serves 2.6 million people across four Bay Area counties. It also allowed for construction of a public power system that provides clean hydroelectric energy for San Francisco city services like public buses, schools, firehouses, and more.”

The Raker Act provided the rights of way to construct water and power facilities over federal land in Yosemite National Park and Stanislaus National Forest. Named after its chief sponsor John E. Raker, Congressman from Manteca, the bill granted the rights to build O’Shaughnessy Dam in the Hetch Hetchy Valley, and construct water-collection and power-generating facilities stretching from the Sierras to the San Francisco Bay Area.

“The communities and businesses in the Bay Area were able to develop and thrive because of access to high quality water,” said Nicole Sandkulla, Chief Executive Officer of the Bay Area Water Supply and Conservation Agency (BAWSCA). “A true engineering marvel, this system supports the health and economic vitality of nearly 7% of California’s population.”

Despite, countless earthquakes, fires and other natural disasters, each day, 2.6 million people in the Bay Area turn on the tap and quench their thirst with Hetch Hetchy Water – some of the most pristine, cleanest water found anywhere in the world. While this water is delivered to its customers, the system also generates on average 1.7 billion kilowatts hours of clean, greenhouse gas-free electricity for San Francisco and its electricity customers. With no carbon footprint from its electricity supply, the SFPUC is considered one of the cleanest electric utilities anywhere.

The City Hall exhibit features a redwood plaque with a silver facsimile of the letter President Wilson wrote which explained his reasoning for signing the Raker Act. Mounted on the plaque is the actual pen the President used to sign the bill into law.

The plaque was originally presented to former San Francisco Mayor James Rolph, Jr. at the dedication of O’Shaughnessy Dam in 1923. Governor Rolph passed this heirloom on to his son, James Rolph III. Rolph was close friends with SFPUC Commissioner Oliver M. Rousseau, and because of this friendship he gave the plaque to Commissioner Rousseau. In 1970 Commissioner Rousseau officially presented the plaque to our commission as the logical and permanent home for such an historic piece. Until a few years ago, the location of the pen was lost to all.  Curators have now refurbished the piece in time for its public debut in City Hall.

Passage of the Raker Act met with a great deal of opposition at the time, having more to do with protecting states and local water rights. Its most well-known opponent was John Muir, environmentalist and founder of the Sierra Club. The merits of the Act are still debated by some today.

“Love or hate the Raker Act, it is undeniable that its passage was truly historic for the San Francisco Bay Area,” concluded General Manager Kelly. “The Hetch Hetchy Regional Water and Power Systems  have reliably served the region well for nearly 100 years.”

Is the SFPUC Trying to Buy Off the Ocean Beach Bulletin Blog to Promote the “Sunset Greenway Project?” Sure Looks That Way

Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

Take a look.

Kind of reminds me of this outfit, which ended up losing relevance after taking money from the SFMTA.

Is this the kind of thing they call co-option?

(I’ll tell you, I’m the only bay area entity I know that turned down an ad money offer from horrible, horrible PG&E. (Can the San Francisco Bay Guardian say that? No. They’ve done at least one ad deal with PG&E. At the time I thought to myself, “Isn’t it ironic, dont’cha think?”)

As always, JMO.

And for every person who voices an opinion like this, there are ten or a hundred who think exactly the same thing but, they’re, you know, too polite to say anything.

I mean, why not say, “We have a contract with the PUC to promote this project” right on the top of the page?

Something to think about…

SFPUC Goes Blue in Ribald Ad Campaign: “No One Deals With More Crap Than I Do” and “Your #2 is My #1″

Monday, October 28th, 2013

OMG

Uh:

That’s totally inappropriate. It’s lewd, lascivious, salacious, outrageous!

But I guess it’s kind of funny. As funny as Gavin Newsom’s ridiculous underwater power concept that the SFPUC seems to have lost interest in.

Anyway:

“As your sewer system, I take my job seriously. That is why public health is my first priority. 

I make it my mission to collect sewage, aka crap from toilets and sinks, from the homes and businesses within the 49 square miles of San Francisco. Along with stormwater captured through the 23,000 catch basins around the City, I treat this combined flow of wastewater, as we like to call it, at one of my treatment plants before I release it out into the Bay and Ocean. I do all this so you can continue to enjoy the beautiful beaches, marinas and piers around San Francisco, while our ecosystems continue to flourish.

You are probably wondering how I’m able to do this. Well, come out to one of our monthly treatment plant tours to find out.

- San Francisco Sewer System”

“I know you probably don’t think about me much, but I surely think about you. Every day, my friends and I make sure that all of my important parts continue functioning like a well-oiled machine. 

They do this by inspecting over 130 miles of my sewer pipes each year. They make sure my pipes are strong and nothing gets clogged in them. Good thing too, because I often have to deal with flushable wipes and fatbergs, aka grease from your drain, in my pipes. 

So they do all of this to make sure you don’t have to live a day without me. And I know you wouldn’t want to…I’m pretty important, you know. 

Want to see how we’re able to accomplish all of this? Come to one of our monthly treatment plant toursto find out.

- San Francisco Sewer System”

“Every day, I deal with about 80 million gallons of crap. This crap comes from the homes of the over 800,000 people who live in San Francisco as well as all the hotels and businesses. I collect the crap from your toilet and sink along with stormwater from streets, which together we call wastewater. Through my 1,000 miles of pipe, located underneath San Francisco’s streets and legendary hills, I transport this wastewater to one of my treatment plants. You don’t have to deal with it or see it, but I do…every day, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. 

Want to find out what I do with this large amount, and I mean, large amount of crap? Come visit one of my treatment plants to find out.

OMG, New “Leap Transit” Bus is a Replacement for the MUNI 30X – It’s $6 to Ride the Marina Express One-Way to Financh

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

[UPDATE: Kevin Montgomery of Uptown Almanac reacts.]

[UPDATE II: The Twitter-stream of one @kylekirchhoff just went private. C'mon, Bro! You gotta engage with the peeps. Today is your big day. It's not that incrimernating, is it? Bro discusses how much he doesn't like Twitter, McAfee Antivirus Inc, and how many people got shot on a MUNI #14 last year. You know, all the usual stuff. But I'll tell you, withdrawing from Web 2.0 is what criminales do, right? You're just a bro with a bus. Nothing wrong with that.]

[UPDATE III: Aaron Sankin of Huffington Post San Francisco weighs in.]

[UPDATE IV: And now Ellen Huet of the San Francisco Chronicle:

John Avalos, a supervisor who has fought against private companies use of Muni stops, called Kirchhoff’s comments “very disingenuous.”

“What a crock of s—,” Avalos said. “How does blocking a Muni stop make the city more efficient? You’re trying to make money, and you’re creating a two-tiered transportation system in San Francisco.”]

I’ll tell you, I’ve been waiting years for a MUNI alternative to pop up and look, it’s here.

Now I’m not talking about the corporate buses (like Google, Apple, FaceBook and so on) that have been around for a decade or so, and I’m not talking about Uber, Lyft, Sidecar and the like and I’m not even talking about the private version of the taxpayer-subsidized Twitter Express, the 83X.

No no. I’m talking about Leap Transit duplicating the unpopular MUNI Marina Express 30x with a private shuttle bus that costs $6 one-way.

It looks like this, as seen just yesterday:

Via Gregg Meyer

Here’s what the site looks like:

See that? The bus comes with WiFi and leather seats, but they cost three times as much as MUNI. And I’m supposing you and your wheelchair would be better off on MUNI, just a guess. And, oh yes,  you pretty much need an Apple iPhone (or as close an iOS device as possible) to climb aboard.

Now you’d think the MSM would be all over this new company, but no. So far, Leap has escaped notice, except from this bloke called  from Down Under. (Uh, he’s _not_ a fan. I haven’t seen a booting like this since Bart vs. Australia)

“This little blue bus symbolises everything that is wrong with the current bubble and boom of internet startup culture. It’s in San Francisco. It belongs to Leap Transit. And, on May 13, this “better bus” — OMFG, it has leather seats and wi-fi! — began operating as part of what’s billed as a “shuttle service for San Francisco commuters.”

Bonus bon mot:

“This socialized [x] is slow and unprofitable. Let’s start a [x] for rich people that pays its employees less.”

Leave there be no doubt, Leap Transit is a wannabe MUNI disrupter. See?

So far, reaction around town has been mixed.

To wit:

connie hwong ‏@crh17h This has come to my attention: a $6 shuttle from the Marina to SOMA, with leather seats & wifi. Seriously, SF?”

Check it:

I don’t know, if the 30X just passed you by ’cause it’s raining and you see a Leap bus coming at you and you have an iPhone and you’re already signed up, well then Leap just might be worth the six bucks.

A 28-year-old white man wants you to ride his technicolor submarine.

Will you?

All the deets:

The Mistakes of San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee – Chapter One: Calling the Hetch Hetchy Valley Restoration Concept “Insane”

Friday, October 26th, 2012

Here it is, in the national media, in the Washington Post’s blog site, for tout le monde to see:

San Francisco’s Spectacular Hypocrisy

That bit from Amy Crawford has this nice quote about Proposition F (2012) from error-prone San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee:

“As insane as this is, it is, in fact, insane,” sputtered the usually mild-mannered Mayor Ed Lee when the initiative was announced.

Now, was it a mistake for San Francisco’s so-called Consensus Mayor to label Prop F (and, indirectly, the supporters of Prop F) as insane?

Yes. It’s not what he meant to say, it’s not what he actually thinks.

Now it certainly would be inconvenient for San Francisco to lose control of Hetch Hetchy, no argument there.

But IRL, it’s not “insane” to think that maybe, just maybe, it’d be a good idea to restore Hetchy Hetchy at some far off point in the future.

The Valley, the “counterpoint” to Yosemite, before San Francisco improperly grabbed it:

And I can see those waterfalls

And I can see those waterfalls

Click to become as “insane” as the half of San Francisco voters what are going to say “Yes” to Prop F (2012) come November.

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