Posts Tagged ‘workers’

Good Times: Throwing Pieces of Structural Iron Off the Third Floor of John Swett Alternative Elementary School

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

Do people actually get paid to huck heavy pieces of metal off of the top of John Swett Alternative Elementary School on McAllister at sunrise?

People do.

Heck, if they called me up, I’d do it for free, watching them triangles accelerate at 9.8 meters per second until the satisfying crash landing. Boooooonk! 

This activity sounds like a pile driver. It’s enough to wake the entire neighborhood on a Saturday morning.

What do these things weigh, 20 pounds? Fire in the hole!

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A third of a second later:

Another third of a second later:

 

And another third of a second later. See it at the bottom?

Hurray!

Mayor Ed Lee is All In Favor of Jobs, Jobs, Jobs, Except When He’s Not – San Francisco’s New $10.24 Minimum Wage

Thursday, December 8th, 2011

Well, here’s the news:

“Mayor Edwin M. Lee today announced today that the City’s minimum wage will be adjusted to $10.24 per hour from $9.92 per hour, reflecting a change of 3.2 percent, effective January 1, 2012.

“This wage increase will help the City’s lowest paid workers to keep pace with inflation and also protect consumer spending of San Francisco’s working families, which will be a boost to our local economic recovery efforts,” said Mayor Lee.

The Minimum Wage Ordinance, passed by the voters in November 2003, calls for annual rate adjustments based on the previous year’s Consumer Price Index for urban wage earners in the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose metropolitan area.”

So, San Francisco having the highest minimum wage in the land is a good thing? Really, it’s unalloyed good? It’s great that our minimum wage is going up into double digits (and making national headlines) during this Great Recession? So why not make it $15 or $20 an hour if high minimum wages are so good?

Since Mayor Ed Lee does what his mentors tell him by crowing about jobs jobs jobs all the time, why then is he in favor of this law, which is, obviously, a “job-killer?” Are there other considerations on his mind?

Anyway, this is the first time I’ve seen the Mayor lose his monomaniacal focus on jobs.

Just saying.

Tree, Stairwell, Mayor, by Artist Unkown

And he’s having a press conference for this why? I don’t know. It’s not his idea. But maybe he wants to be associated with something pro-labor for a change? I don’t know

Wage Boost for San Francisco’s Lowest Paid Workers to $10.24, Starting January 1st 

12/6/11—Mayor Edwin M. Lee today announced today that the City’s minimum wage will be adjusted to $10.24 per hour from $9.92 per hour, reflecting a change of 3.2 percent, effective January 1, 2012. 

“This wage increase will help the City’s lowest paid workers to keep pace with inflation and also protect consumer spending of San Francisco’s working families, which will be a boost to our local economic recovery efforts,” said Mayor Lee. 

The Minimum Wage Ordinance, passed by the voters in November 2003, calls for annual rate adjustments based on the previous year’s Consumer Price Index for urban wage earners in the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose metropolitan area 

Comparatively, the federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour and the California minimum wage is $8.00 per hour. Employers must pay San Francisco’s higher minimum wage for all covered work performed within the City. 

“Across the country, take-home pay, adjusted for inflation, has fallen in the last year. Workers in San Francisco are fortunate that our minimum wage rate is indexed to keep pace with inflation,” said Office of Labor Standards Enforcement Manager Donna Levitt. 

This month, the City will be mailing updated multilingual posters announcing the new rate to 45,000 registered businesses with employees. Employers are required to post the notice in their workplace. 

More information about San Francisco’s Minimum Wage Ordinance can be found at www.sfgov.org/olse/mwo or by calling the Office of Labor Standards Enforcement at (415) 554-6292.

What It’s Like to Commute From Treasure Island to the Financial District – If You Lived Here, You’d Be Home By Now

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

Here’s a great shot by Mike Behnken taken* from Yerba Buena Island:

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If you move to that new city they’re building on sinking Treasure Island, your commute will take you from camera right onto the western span of the San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge and then right into SoMA.

On a good day, that would take like four minutes…

*Wow, a 30-second exposure, but there’s no good place to put a tripod except for the roadway. I’ve seen people hanging out taking photos close to here but they looked none too comfortable owing to the slope.

Hey Feds! Senator Leland Yee is Inviting You All to Our Mayor Election – Why Not Take a Working Vacation in San Francisco?

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

So what do you think, Federales? You think you could see your way clear to coming to the 415 for the next week or so to investigate electoral corruption in San Francisco? Come on down to work a week in town. I just know that you’ll find something.

But that’s only from nine to five, you dig? After hours, you can visit whichever new or existing Michelin-starred restaurant that you want. And then, just expense it, baby. Easy peasy.

San Francisco wins, you win.

This will be your 11th course at The French Laundry (yes, Pixar used it as a model for the kitchen in Ratatouille) up in Napa: Feuillentine au Caramel. “Intense oozing,” baby. Serving the Commonweal never tasted so good:

Via ulterior epicure

All right, here’s a cheat sheet to get you started:

“More Ed Lee Money Laundering and Voter Fraud Uncovered – Leland Yee Says Enough Is Enough – State & Federal Election Monitors Needed

SAN FRANCISCO – The well documented scene in Chinatown of Ed Lee IE campaign workers filling out ballots for voters and the Go Lorries money laundering scheme may seem tame in comparison to what two local newspapers documented in today’s paper.

The San Francisco Chronicle is reporting that a person known for “strong-arming tenants out of rent-controlled apartments” emailed associates of Archway Property Services directing them to attend a Lee fundraiser and telling them they would be reimbursed for their $500 contribution. Campaign finance laws prohibit money laundering.

Andrew Hawkins, the managing director of Archway Property Services, emailed 16 associates the following: “I expect each and every one of you to be at this event tonight. Bring your check books and write a check for $500.00 for Ed Lee donation. You will be reimbursed right away for you coming.”

In addition, the Epoch Times Chinese newspaper went undercover to find Chinatown Community Development Center (CCDC) and Community Tenant Association (CTA) staff also working on the Ed Lee campaign and even having keys to his office on Clay Street. In addition, the paper found various instances of CCDC, CTA, or Ed Lee campaign staff filling out and mailing voters ballots, in clear violation of law. Many of the ballots from these documented locations arrived at the Election’s Office at the same time.

“This is yet further evidence that we need state and federal election monitors now,” said Senator Leland Yee. “San Franciscans cannot afford to just wait out the clock until November 8. There appears to be massive voter fraud that should be immediately investigated to protect the integrity of this election. Either Ed Lee is condoning these illegal tactics or the wool is being pulled over his eyes – not what we need of our Mayor.”

Filling out their ballots

After describing themselves as prospective voters, two Epoch Times reporters were met by a Lee campaign worker who explained that her role with CTA included working on the Lee campaign.

The worker explained that “helping” voters in fact meant to simply have an elderly person sign and date their ballot, and then she or another campaign worker would take it away to fill it out and mail it in.

Using a nonprofit for campaign purposes

At 777 Broadway – a CCDC building – CTA is apparently running an office out of the community room in which they also distribute Ed Lee campaign literature and make announcements for meetings in support of Lee’s mayoral bid. CCDC says that political advertising is not allowed at their buildings.

Coincidental statistics

According to CCDC website, the 777 Broadway building includes 31 studio apartments. According to voter records, there are 33 registered voters of which 31 are vote by mail voters. This equates to nearly 94 percent of the voters being vote by mail. By comparison, the city at large is only 46 percent. And even as early as October 24, 60 percent of the 777 Broadway voters had already cast their ballots, versus only 6 percent for the rest of the city.

Equally troubling is the fact that 19 of the ballots from the building arrived at the Elections Office within a day of each other. In essence, the public is expected to believe that 1/3 of the ballots arrived at virtually the same time in complete coincidence.

A similar phenomenon exists with another CCDC building – 1590 Broadway – in which 20 absentee ballots arrived at the Election’s department on the exact same day, October 24.

More voter and election fraud

Epoch Times spoke to one elderly woman who sad that she was visited by a CTA worker and signed her ballot without filling it out and was told that it would be filled out for her and mailed in. Filling out and mailing in other people’s ballots is a clear violation of elections law.

A number of CTA and CCDC workers were observed “popping in and working alongside other staff” at Lee’s 943 Clay Street campaign office. In fact, one CCDC worker even had keys to the office and was observed opening the door for the undercover reporters.”

See you soon, Feds!

If Hertz is Using All-Electric Buses These Days, Than Why Can’t Google, Apple and Genentech?

Monday, October 24th, 2011

You know, to move their employees around, as in the Google Bus, the Apple Bus, the Genentech Bus, and others?

That’s the question you might have after hearing that Hertz is going electric with the eBUS-12 from Warren Buffet-approved BYD. Deets below.

A range of 155 miles per charge, that’s pretty good, right?

Here it is:

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Wouldn’t this be an upgrade from the diesel buses what are being used to take workers back and forth betwixt San Francisco and Silly Valley these days?

First off, a lot of those corporate shuttle buses are being operated by that cheesy Bauer’s Transportation Company, right? So that’s not good.

(To review, Bauer’s doesn’t have a “solar bus,” despite what self-appointed Bauer Brand Ambassador / San Francisco Chronicle “City Bright” / corporate sell-out Zennie Abraham tried to sell people last year in the electronic pages of SFGate. (Ooh, how embarrassing for all concerned!) No no, if anything and at best, Bauer’s can get you a regular old diesel bus with solar panels on top, big whoop.)

Second off, you could be the first, the first company in the bay area to go electric. Sure, it’d be a pain to recharge these rigs every day, but you could figure it out. And think of the bragging rights.

O.K. fine.

Hertz First Car-Rental Company to Deploy a Zero-Emissions All-Electric Bus - Hertz uses the BYD eBUS-12 at LAX

PARK RIDGE, N.J., Oct. 24, 2011  – The Hertz Corporation (NYSE: HTZ), the world’s largest general use airport car rental brand, announces today the use of BYD’s eBUS-12 at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), the first such use to be conducted by a rental car company. Hertz is testing the all-electric on its main routes to gain data on this new platform.

“Hertz is aggressively moving forward with its Global EV program, introducing electric vehicles into its worldwide fleet and testing other electric vehicles as they become available,” says Mark P. Frissora, Hertz Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Hertz’s mission is to provide the most technologically advanced mobility solutions to our customers, including the buses we use as part of our everyday operations at airports. We continue Hertz’s track record of innovation by being first to deploy an all-electric shuttle bus in the US.”

The BYD pure electric eBUS-12 is able to run 155 miles on a single charge in urban conditions, more than enough for Hertz’s use at its airport locations, and its energy consumption is less than 100 kWh per 60 miles. The eBUS-12 is designed with the customer in mind, with a low floor and ample space to allow easy passenger loading and unloading and the bus has specially engineered sound insulation for a quieter cabin experience. The eBUS is being tested at Hertz’s Los Angeles Airport location, shuttling car rental customers between the terminals and Hertz’s rental facility. With a lower cost of ownership than a traditional gas powered bus, replacing just one traditional bus with the eBUS will reduce emissions by over 320 kg of CO2 (per 150 miles traveled) and save Hertz an average of $76* per day, per bus in fuel costs! (*32 gallons of diesel at $3.20/gal are replaced with $25.92 in electricity for $0.08/Kwh — the night time EV charge rates in LA).

BYD America President, Stella Li, stated, “BYD is thrilled to partner with HERTZ to demonstrate this significant breakthrough in zero-emissions buses. Not only is this eBUS a third less expensive to operate, but the total life-time costs are much less expensive than any other comparable 40-foot bus. Hertz is a leader in electric vehicles and other innovations and we are pleased to see that Hertz is the first rental company to deploy an all-electric bus.”

Hertz recently expanded its EV initiative to China, making it the first global rental car company to offer electric vehicles (EVs) on three continents. In its first year, the Hertz Global EV initiative has grown from a vision to a market presence cities around the world including New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, London and Shenzhen, offering the most diverse fleet of EVs from manufactures including BYD, Nissan, GM, Mitsubishi, Renault, Daimler and Tesla. Hertz is uniquely positioned to introduce multiple groups of consumers – urban drivers, university students, travelers and corporations – to all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. As part of its strategy, Hertz is forming partnerships with automakers, charging station providers, municipalities, NGOs, corporations and other stakeholders.

Hertz plans to increase its global EV presence by deploying vehicles in other countries in the coming months. Hertz Global EV will continue to leverage the company’s rental and car sharing locations as bases for vehicles and charging stations, and tap into its technology – including sophisticated fleet management tools and the consumer-facing GPS systems, including the NeverLost GPS system in the U.S. – to help form an EV grid.

For more information, visit www.hertz.com or www.hertzondemand.com.

About Hertz

Hertz is the largest worldwide airport general use car rental brand operating from more than 8,500 locations in 146 countries worldwide. Hertz is the number one airport car rental brand in the U.S. and at 81 major airports in Europe, operating both corporate and licensee locations in cities and airports in North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. In addition, the Company has licensee locations in cities and airports in Africa and the Middle East. Product and service initiatives such as Hertz #1 Club Gold(R), NeverLost(R) customized, in-car GPS system, SIRIUS XM Satellite Radio, and unique cars and SUVs offered through the Company’s Prestige, Fun and Green Collections, set Hertz apart from the competition. The Company also operates the Advantage car rental brand and the global car sharing club Hertz on Demand. And, Hertz operates one of the world’s largest equipment rental businesses, Hertz Equipment Rental Corporation, from approximately 325 branches in the United States, Canada, China, France, Spain and Italy.

About BYD:

BYD was ranked #1 at the top of Bloomberg’s and BusinessWeek’s 2009 Tech 100 List (http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20100520006751/en/BYD-Tops-Bloomberg-Businessweek%E2%80%99s-12th-Annual-Tech) and is the leading manufacturer of advanced, environmentally-friendly battery technologies like the BYD’s Iron Phosphate battery used in BYD electric vehicles and electric buses. BYD’s solar panels and LED Lighting systems have CEC, TUV/CE and UL listings, and the company enjoys rapid growth in consumer electronics space and electrified transportation sector manufacturing under its BYD brand. BYD is the fastest-growing Chinese automotive and green energy technology enterprise. The Company trades on the Hong Kong Exchange (HKE) under the ticker numbers (HK.0285 – BYD Electronics) and (HK.1211 – BYD Company Ltd.), as well as on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange under the ticker number (002594 – BYD Company Ltd.). For more information, visit www.byd.com, www.facebook.com/bydcompany or email pr@byd.com.

Labor Unrest on Market Street: Carpenters Local 2236 vs. McRoskey, the Absurdly Expensive Mattress Maker

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

This was the scene yesterday on Market Street near Gough:

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Is the National Labor Relations Board involved with something to do with McRoskey Mattress Company, that longtime manufacturer of absurdly expensive mattresses, as well as absurdly expensive pillows and, well, you get the idea? I think so.

Anyway, if you ever want to buy a cot for $2000+, or a twin bed for $3600 (plus tax of course), well, just push past the protesters and shop, shop, shop.

Our City Family: Labor Council, Chamber of Commerce, and Warren Hellman Unite to Fight Jeff Adachi’s Prop D

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

Well here’s the news of the day – it’s the launch of YesOnCNoOnD.com

And look who’s the headliner of this Fellowship, it’s “Civic Leader” Warren Hellman, who used to play for the other team, so to speak.

Anyway, all the deets, below.

That Warren sure loves his banjo:

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“PAULSON, FALK TO CO-CHAIR YES ON PROPOSITION C PENSION REFORM CAMPAIGN - Top Labor Leader, Top Business Leader Tapped To Lead Consensus Coalition

SAN FRANCISCO, August 31, 2011 – San Franciscans United For Pension And Health Reform today selected Tim Paulson and Steve Falk to serve as co-chairs of the campaign supporting Proposition C and opposing Proposition D on the November ballot.

Paulson is executive director of the San Francisco Labor Council, comprised of 150 local unions and representing 100,000 workers, and Falk is president and CEO of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, a 1,500-member organization representing the business community.

“We are pleased that San Francisco’s top labor leader and top business leader are working together to lead this coalition’s campaign for pension and health reform,” said Thomas P. O’Connor, president of Fire Fighters Local 798. “Unions and the business community don’t agree on everything, but on Proposition C, San Francisco is united.”

Falk praised Proposition C, which was developed with input from the community, introduced by Mayor Ed Lee, and passed unanimously by the Board of Supervisors.

“Proposition C saves taxpayers at least $1.3 billion over the next decade,” said Falk. “This measure is fiscally responsible and it will help keep us solvent.”

Paulson emphasized the measure’s fairness.

“Proposition C provides a safety net for hardworking city employees who earn lower wages,” said Paulson. “It keeps pension contributions stable for those making less than $50,000 a year. Those who make more pay more.”

O’Connor drew a contrast between Proposition C and Proposition D, a rival pension measure.

“Proposition C has widespread support because it was conceived in the light of day, with a public process that encouraged input and ideas from everyone,” said O’Connor. “On the other hand, the backers of Proposition D bought their way onto the ballot with signature gatherers who were paid five dollars a signature and repeatedly got caught on tape lying about what the measure would do.”

Today, San Franciscans United For Pension And Health Reform also announced the other members of its campaign committee. In addition to Paulson, Falk, and O’Connor, the committee includes other business and labor leaders, along with the measure’s sponsor at the Board of Supervisors:

Warren Hellman, Civic Leader
Gary Delagnes, President of the San Francisco Police Officers Association
Sean Elsbernd, Member of the Board of Supervisors
Steve Fields, Co-Chair of the Human Services Network
Larry Mazzola, Business Manager and Financial Secretary Treasurer of UA Local 38
Rebecca Rhine, Executive Director of the Municipal Executives Association
Bob Muscat, Executive Director of IFTPE Local 21
Sean Connolly, President of the Municipal Attorneys Association

Please visit www.yesoncnoond.com for more information.”

Wow, Andronico’s Supermarkets are Seeking Bankruptcy Protection, But They’ll Stay Open For Now

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

The local Andronico’s supermarket chain, home to an insane collection of fruits and vegetables, is seeking bankruptcy protection, per the San Francisco Business Times.

Their website is down now, but the stores are open and they’ll continue to be open for the foreseeable future.

Taste the rainbow, in the Sunset District:

Via bmeabroad – click to expand.

Wow.

Good luck, Andronico’s workers.

OMG, Signs of a Renaissance at Our “Second Renaissance Revival” Federal Building at 50 Fulton – Hurray!

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

OMG, it’s “Loin Stimulus,” finally.

These days, there are signs of life at the old Bakewell & Brown Federal Building at 50 Fulton. (Or “50 United Nations Plaza.” Why put the name of that failure all over the place? Yish. The address is 50 Fulton, IRL, right?)

See the workers up there? 

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It’s what the Feds call “Recovery in Progress – Working for you. Working for San Francisco.” Gee, thanks, Feds!*

Groove on the architecture.

Looks nice from the inside:

Now, don’t get me started on Lawrence Halprin‘s failed United Nations Plaza, the Mistake by the Lake built atop Yerba Buena Cemetery:

“Halprin was the creative force behind the interactive, ‘playable’ civic fountains most common in the 1970s, an amenity which continues to greatly contribute to the pedestrian social experience in Portland Oregon, where “Ira’s Fountain” is loved and well-used, and which has been a chronic failure at the transient-ridden United Nations Plaza in San Francisco.”

And UN Plaza made the Hall of Shame. Oh well.

All the deets about 50 Fulton:

Significant events

1927: Congress approves $2.5 million for new San Francisco Federal Building
1930: City of San Francisco donates site for building
1934-1936: Building constructed
1975: United Nations Plaza construction commences
1987: San Francisco Civic Center designated a National Historic Landmark
2007: Building vacated
[edit]Building facts

Location: 50 United Nations Plaza
Architect: Arthur Brown, Jr.
Construction Dates: 1934-1936
Architectural Style: Second Renaissance Revival
Landmark Status: Designated a National Historic Landmark as a Contributing Building to the San Francisco Civic Center
Primary Material: Granite
Prominent Features:
Classical Facade with Upper-story Colonnade
Ornate Entrance Vestibule, Lobby, and Elevator Lobby
Naval Commandant’s Office

*Thanks for finally doing something with your aging hulk of a brokedown palace after all these years.