Posts Tagged ‘Treasurer’

Well, As Expected, the $7 Fee at the Strybing Arboretum is Going to Become Permanent – A Little History

Friday, June 28th, 2013

Boy there’s a lot of overhead involved with the whole process of charging people $7 to walk through the former Strybing Arboretum, it sure looks like.

Anyway, here’s a little background on how we’ve gotten to this point:

LMA-BOS-Supporter Talking Points-6-4.21.13 Budget Hearing

Arboretum Contract Critique

And here’s a post from 2010:

“Not sure how many people were at last night’s “workshop” to discuss the idea of charging admission at San Francisco Botanical Garden (aka Strybing Arboretum) in Golden Gate Park ’cause I left before it ended. But the hand-count totaled 225 souls, so let’s call that a gentleman’s 250 altogether for the crowd.

Here’s the thing - people on both sides all seem to know each other and care deeply about The Garden. This conflict seems a kind of civil war (hence the Antietam name check, yes it rhymes exactly), a family squabble. It’s plant-loving Brother against plant-loving-but-other-stuff-too Brother. Get up to speed on this dispute here.

Now, once more into the breach, dear friends.

The mise-en-scene last night. It’s Recreation and Park Commission President Jim Lazarus taking individual questions from a hostile crowd, split up unnecessarily, it turned out, into three sections. This is what the bulk of the meeting looked like. Click to expand:

But let’s start at the beginning. Below, it’s the organized neighbors! They taped up hundreds of small signs to draw attention to the meeting. Did workers from DPW spend a lot of time taking down the unofficial notices? Apparently. Were any official notices put up, like last time? Not that I could see.

Inside, the fellow on the left, (didn’t get his name, someone called him The Kid) tried to get things started, but vocal members of the crowd didn’t like the agenda that was handed out, particularly they didn’t like being split up into three groups.

The guy with the ponytail went off, and the Eli in the Yale jacket on the right pleaded for calm. Thank Gaia for Yalies:

After a couple go-arounds like that, The Kid threatened to cancel the meeting. (Arboretum staff appears to view hosting public meetings like these as doing a favor to Arboretum visitors, and truth be told, if San Francisco officials are dead-set on allowing the charging of admission, they can do it regardless of what regular Arboretum visitors want.) Here’s a ten-minute video of the action.

But after a brief huddle, redolent of a friendly car salesperson taking your low-ball offer to the Big Guy…

…out comes lawyer Jim Lazarus calling an audible to change the meeting’s format. He seemed every bit the experienced pol he is.

The new agenda that got worked out with leadership elements from the masses: an uninterupted 10-15 minute “general presentation” of the plan. “Then you can decide how much you want to beat us up after that,” said Jimbo. “You can shoot us all when it’s over.”

This Lazarus Effect resuscitated the meeting. So, let’s hear The Proposal.

The Arboretum would set up pre-fab ticket kiosks at the Main Gate and the Friend Gate (near the Japanese Tea Garden) for $65K and then hire four part-time cashiers, a manager(?), and also a part-time accountant for $148K per year. San Francisco residents would enter for free after showing some sort of ID. Those useless freeloading parasites known as Everybody Else in the World would pay $7, or $4 (students and seniors), or $2 (kids) each time they go in. They’d have the option of getting a $75 annual pass that would also allow entry at the Japanese Tea Garden and the Conservatory of Flowers – something like that.

The projected 100,000 in paid admissions would have a “blended average” of $5.50 per, resulting in a gross take of $550K. Take away $150K for expenses and you end up with an annual net of $400K, of which $100-150K would go into the Rec and Park kitty and the rest could go into whatever, like hiring more gardeners at $68K salary (plus 25% more in benefits).

The goal would be to eventually get up to a full complement of 16 gardeners, which will “never happen” without some new source of Arboretum-specific cashola.

That’s it.

“KEEP THE ARBORETUM FREE”

What about residents of neighboring counties in the Bay Area you say? It doesn’t matter, all auslanders gotta pay.

What about the rumoured $1.3 million cost of building the kiosks and other related expenses? That was just a “Cadillac proposal” dreamed up by somebody or other – the bare bones approach discussed last night would not be as nice, but it would get the job done.

This charismatic-messianic type got lots of applause for questioning the whole idea of charging anybody anything, regardless of the numbers:

Mr. Lazarus acknowledged the fear San Francisco residents have of being the next in line to be charged, the fear that admission prices would then increase after that. No promises on that front. Que sera sera.

But I’ll let the Keep the Arboretum Free people delve into these issues more. When I left, Lazarus was answering questions one by one, Phil Donahue-style.

“FREE means NO FEES, NO I.D.s”

Oh yes, the “next terrible meeting” promised by Jimbo will concern paid parking in Golden Gate Park. (Do people really plant their vehicle in the park for free and then run all over town all day? People do.)

Random observations:

The estimate of $148k annually to pay salaries for  the paid admission scheme sounds low. Way low, particularly in light of what cashiers at the Japanese Tea Garden get paid.

Park and Rec knows how to notice a public meeting but, for whatever reason, it appears to have done a bush-league job of noticing last night’s workshop.

Next up next month in June: the action will move over to City Hall and the Board of Supervisors. When will our civil war end?

Public Workshop – Botanical Garden

When: May 28, 2009 – Thursday 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Where: County Fair Building, 9th Avenue and Lincoln Avenue, San Francisco
What: In response to the feedback received on the proposed admission program at Botanical Garden, the Rec & Park Department decided there will not be a fee for residents. The revised proposal does include a $7. fee for nonresident visitors. Public workshop is to take feedback regarding revised proposed admission fee and will be seeking topics including:
Implementation of the new fee for non-San Francisco residents.
Amenities at the Garden.
Potential new revenue sources.

To Be Continued…

News Release: “San Francisco Democrats elect Mary Jung chair, as newly elected DCCC members take office”

Friday, July 27th, 2012

Should a one-party town have its elected officials reflect “unity and common purpose?”

That’s the Question of the Day.

(I’ll bet PG&E lobbyist Willie Brown would answer in the affirmative.)

Deets below.

Wednesday evening, 455 Golden Gate Avenue:

Click to expand

“San Francisco Democrats elect Mary Jung chair, as newly elected DCCC members take office
Committee reflects ‘unity and common purpose’ in 2012 to re-elect Obama, help Pelosi reclaim Speakership, and make a difference on key state ballot measures
SAN FRANCISCO (July 27, 2012) — California Democratic Party Chair John Burton administered the oath of office to the newly elected members of the San Francisco Democratic County Central Committee Wednesday night at the first general meeting of the local Democratic Party’s governing board following the June 5th Primary Election.  

Veteran Democratic activist Mary Jung was unanimously elected to serve as the San Francisco Democratic Party’s chair, and several DCCC members were elected to fill leadership roles that will be critical to the local party’s success heading into the November 2012 General Election.  Top priorities discussed at the public meeting include re-electing President Obama, returning the Speakership to House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi by helping reclaim a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives, and pushing to expand the number of Democratic voters citywide.  

“I’m honored to serve as Chair of the San Francisco Democratic Party, and I look forward to working hard with my fellow Democrats in an election year with so much at stake,” said Party Chair Mary Jung.    “San Francisco Democrats elected a terrific team to lead our county central committee, and I think it reflects a spirit of unity and common purpose.  I’m confident in our ability to help return President Obama to the White House, make Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi Speaker again, re-elect Senator Feinstein, and pass Gov. Brown’s revenue measure so California can maintain vital public services, restore quality education for all, and support our most vulnerable.”

Other officers elected at the general meeting held at the California State Office Building’s Milton Marks Auditorium on Golden Gate Avenue are: First Vice-Chair (Finance) Zoe Dunning; Second Vice-Chair (Issues) Alix Rosenthal; Third Vice-Chair (Voter Registration) Trevor McNeil; Fourth Vice-Chair (Club Chartering and Development) Leah Pimentel; Recording Secretary Kat Anderson; Treasurer Tom Hsieh; Corresponding Secretary Matt Dorsey; and Parliamentarian Arlo Hale Smith.  Rafael Mandelman will serve on the DCCC’s Slate Card Committee along with the Chair and Treasurer.  A committee tasked with proposing party bylaw changes to incorporate requirements of the Ralph M. Brown Act, which assures public access and participation in local government public meetings, will include David Chiu, Arlo Hale Smith, Matt Dorsey and Hene Kelly.  That ad hoc committee will seek to fully harmonize local party bylaws with relevant provisions of state law to address concerns that the election of six members of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors to the DCCC may occasionally trigger Brown Act requirements. 

The committee also adopted two resolutions: one in support of placing AB 1648, a campaign finance reform measure known as the DISCLOSE Act, on the California ballot; and another expressing the Democratic Party’s support for City College of San Francisco.  

About the San Francisco Democratic County Central Committee
San Francisco’s Democratic County Central Committee, or DCCC, is the governing body of the local Democratic Party as defined in California’s Government Code and Elections Code.  The DCCC is comprised of local Democrats elected by voters in each Assembly District, as well as partisan-level Democratic elected officials and nominees who serve as Ex-Officio Officers.  Current members elected from the 17th Assembly District are: John Avalos, David Campos, David Chiu, Malia Cohen, Petra DeJesus, Matt Dorsey, Bevan Dufty, Zoe Dunning, Leslie Katz, Rafael Mandelman, Carole Migden, Leah Pimentel, Alix Rosenthal, and Scott Wiener.  Members elected from the 19th Assembly District are: Kat Anderson, Kelly Dwyer, Bill Fazio, Tom Hsieh, Mary Jung, Hene Kelly, Meagan Levitan, Eric Mar, Trevor McNeil and Arlo Hale Smith.  Ex Officio members are: U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, U.S. House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier, Attorney General Kamala Harris, State Senators Leland Yee and Mark Leno, and Assemblymembers Fiona Ma and Tom Ammiano. 

Additional information is available online at: http://www.sfdemocrats.org/

Supervisor John Avalos To Hold Hearing October 24th on Local Banking Options and Alternatives to National Banks

Friday, October 21st, 2011

Bright and early Monday morning at City Hall:

“Supervisor John Avalos To Hold Hearing on Local Banking Options and Alternatives to Corporate Banks

San Francisco, CA –  Supervisor John Avalos, Chair of the City Operations and Neighborhood Services Committee will hold a hearing on local alternatives to corporate banking institutions.

WHAT: Hearing on Local Banking Options
WHEN: Monday, October 24, 10am
WHERE: City Hall, Board Chamber
WHO:  Committee Members, Treasurer Jose Cisneros, Budget and Legislative Analyst Office, Community groups

“Wall Street speculators and large banks crashed our economy and have done little to nothing to help since we bailed them out,” said Avalos.  “As a city, we need to make sure that we are leveraging all our resources and wealth to support our revitalize our economy by supporting our homeowners, small businesses, and students.”

The hearing will include a presentation from the City’s Office of Budget and Legislative Analyst, who has prepared at report on community supportive banking alternatives at the behest of Supervisor Avalos whose District faces one of the highest rates of foreclosure in the City.

The alternatives outlined in the report range from investing in community development banks to creating a Municipal Bank to serve the City of San Francisco in much the same way the Bank of North Dakota has spurred local development in that state.”

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If Mayor Ed Lee is All About Creating Tech Jobs in San Francisco, Why is His Website from a D.C. Firm?

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

Comes now TigerBeat, who asks:

“If @mayoredlee is all about creating tech jobs in SanFrancisco, why is his website by Washington DC’s bullseyeinteractive.com?”

A fair question, one might think.

Check it:

“Paid for by Ed Lee for Mayor 2011, Greg Sanborn, Treasurer, FPPC # 1340520

info (at) mayoredlee.com

Powered by Bullseye Interactive

Oh, and since I have the floor, was former Mayor Gavin Newsom a “Job Killer” when he signed the notorious and now-dead Twitter Tax into law in 2004? I think so.

I mean, didn’t we have stock options and tech companies back in 2004?

Yes we did.

Impressions, Strybing: There’s a Riot of Color Going On in Golden Gate Park These Days, For Those Who Break the Boycott

Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

This is what you can see inside Strybing Arboretum this time of year:

Click to expand

And outside, what you’ll see are a bunch of tourists debating the merits of paying $28 or whatever to enter the gates. Usually, they walk off dejectedly.

Oh well.

Oh No, Ed Lee! Mayor Campaign Kickoff a Huge Success – Hundreds on Hand Plus Willie Brown and Rose Pak

Saturday, June 25th, 2011

(Through all of this, which is unprecedented, really, please remember: “Interim” Mayor Edwin Lee didn’t ask to be short-roped to the summit:

For her part, Pittman didn’t ask to be short-roped. As she left Camp Four at the front of Fischer’s group, Lopsang abruptly pulled her aside and girth-hitched a length of rope to the front of her climbing harness. Then, without consulting her, he capped the other end to his own harness and began to pull. She maintains that Lopsang hauled her up the slope very much against her wishes. Which begs a question: why didn’t she simply unfasten the three-foot tether connecting her to Lopsang, which would have required nothing more than reaching up and unclipping a single carabiner?

Moving on…)

Wow, today’s campaign kickoff for the Ed Lee for Mayor campaign, a Rose Pak /Willie Brown joint, went off without a hitch, with yellow-shirted “Ed Heads” heading off in all directions to gather signatures.

See? Hundreds and hundreds there were, it seemed:

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Now, is Edwin Lee into the leather scene, on this day before Pride 2011? Oh hells yes, apparently. Taste the rainbow:

And look who’s outside? It’s the leaders of the Ed Lee for Mayor campaign! See them?

Here’s a peek from the sidewalk of Mission Street through the open door. It was packed, baby:

And check it, it’s San Francisco Chronicle reporter* Rose Pak having a chat with Phil Matier. Oh hey, he’s a reporter too!

Oh, here’s what she had to say:

“‘Pretty good, eh?’ Pak said, pointing to the overflow crowd that spilled out onto the sidewalk.”

Leave us depart – almost seemed as if the volunteers were eager to hit the road. (Truth be told, there was no room inside for them to hear the nobodies who were addressing the crowd.)

Step aside Leland Yee, this race has a new front runner!

*Oops, I meant former San Francisco Chronicle reporter….

The Lonely Workers of the Renegade Edwin Lee for Mayor Campaign – Plus Ed Lee Ephemera, Already!

Saturday, June 25th, 2011

Do you know these people?

I do, sort of. Anyway, I couldn’t get a thumbs-up from them or anything like that yesterday as they were preparing for today’s big Ed Lee for Mayor 2012-2020 campaign kickoff at South Van Ness and Mission.

(Frankly, they seemed, I don’t know, a little auspicious of me.)

Click to expand

And, I’ll tell you, I’ve seen a lot of campaigns, and, usually, campaign workers are a lot more, I don’t know, cheery.

Oh well.

Anyway, don’t miss out on your chance to collect Run Ed Run! (tambien conocido como Postule Ed, Postule!) ephemera while you can.

Now, which do you prefer?

Happy Ed?

Or angry Ed?

Again: Better A….

or B?

Is being Mayor of San Francisco like being in an Amway pyramid scheme?

You know, Mayor Willie Brown gets reelected easily (back in the 1990′s this was) and then appoints Gavin Newsom, who gets reelected easily, and then appoints Edwin Lee, who gets reelected easily, and then, in 2019, appoints _____, who gets reelected easily, and then…

Take a Look at Strybing Arboretum (aka San Francisco Botanical Garden) After the Admissions Boycott

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

Why does our Strybing Arboretum (aka San Francisco Botanical Garden) need to become “world-class?”

Nobody’s ever explained that one to me. But that’s the rationale for charging admission these days (after six decades of free admission.)

Now, why isn’t our Strybing Arboretum called Strybing Arboretum anymore?

So it can become “world-class.” (Apparently, naming an arboretum after the woman who gave the money to start things up is considered provincial Back East. Plus Founder Helene Strybing made the mistake of becoming old and dying so nobody gives a ROMEO ALPHA about her anymore.)

Anyway, they started charging admission so the place turned into a ghost town, a “museum of plants and trees.”

Click to expand

Oh well.

They said if things didn’t work out, they’d stop charging admission.

They said.

It Begins: Edwin Lee, Mayor 2011-2020 – Now Up and Running: RunEdRun.Org and Run-Ed-Run.Org

Saturday, June 11th, 2011

Take your pick from these two four-day-old websites:

RunEdRun.Org

Run-Ed-Run.Org

(Paid for by Progress For All, FPPC 1338720, apparently.)

Now, is this brand new sign official Ed Lee for Mayor 2012-2016 campaign literature?

Via The Tens (Paid for by the Alliance for an Adorable Mayor)

Probably not.

Probably not yet, anyway.

But what about this, is this official campaign literature?

Straight outta Brunswick, ME and the 510, Mayor Ed Lee patrols San Francisco airspace, on the lookout for those who would poach our famous tech companies:

Click to expand, go ahead – it won’t bite

Probably not.

Probably not, ever.

But can you imagine how thrilled the business community in San Francisco would be with eight years of Edwin Lee as Mayor?

Ed Lee is:

1. Already Mayor;

2. A tax cutter already;

3. 30-50 IQ points ahead of his predecessor; and

4. Baggage-free!

But, Only Time Will Tell…