"League of Pissed-Off Voters" questionnaire responses

This questionnaire was an online web form, so it appears that any candidate -- or I suppose any member of the public, if so inclined -- could go and fill one out with the link I was sent:

https://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?formkey=dExiMGdfYnRTWjN2Wk5PSWU1MXFfWlE6MA

  If you do choose to fill out their survey, I'm trusting you to not cause trouble -- make it clear you are not me by including your own name, just in case they sent me a unique link for my use alone. (Their message didn't say so, but...)

  The yes/no questions below didn't offer any other options or room to qualify or elaborate, or I would have had more to say about some of them!

Love & Liberty,
        ((( starchild )))

San Francisco League of Pissed Off Voters 2010 Candidate Questionnaire - Citywide
Your answers to this survey will help determine the League's endorsements for this election cycle. Good luck!
* Required

Candidate Name *

Starchild

Office *(San Francisco Supervisor, for example)

School Board

District(If Applicable)

Do you support lowering the voting age to 16 for SF elections?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support eliminating the 2/3rd vote requirement for the state legislature to pass new taxes?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support changing California's property tax system to a split roll property tax that would raise business property taxes without changing residential taxes?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support this election's San Francisco Prop D - Non-Citizen Voting in School Board Elections?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support this election's San Francisco Prop E - Election Day Voter Registration?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support this election's San Francisco Prop J - Hotel Tax Clarification and Temporary Increase?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support the proposed "sit/lie" ordinance in SF (this Election's Prop L)?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support this election's San Francisco Prop M - Community Policing and Foot Patrols?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support this election's San Francisco Prop N - Real Property Transfer Tax?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support legalizing, regulating, and taxing marijuana in California (this election's Prop 19)?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support suspending California's AB32 (this election's Prop 23)?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support the removal of current California corporate tax loopholes (this election's Prop 24)?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support changing California's budgeting rules so a simple majority of the legislature is required to pass the budget (this election's Prop 25)?
  • Yes
  • No

Do you support changing California's budgeting rules so that a 2/3rds majority in the legislature is required to pass new fees for violating regulations (this election's Prop 26)?
  • Yes
  • No

Did you support the November 2008 Prop B to create an affordable housing fund?
  • Yes
  • No

Did you support the November 2008 Prop H concerning renewable energy and public power?
  • Yes
  • No

Did you support the June 2008 Prop F for affordable housing requirements in the Hunters Point Shipyard Project?
  • Yes
  • No

Did you support the June 2008 Prop G to authorize the Hunters Point Shipyard Project?
  • Yes
  • No

Are you supporting anyone for Mayor in 2011? (rank up to 3)

No endorsements at this time

Are you supporting anyone for District 2 Supervisor in 2010? (rank up to 3)

No endorsements at this time

Are you supporting anyone for District 4 Supervisor in 2010? (rank up to 3)

No. I wish there were a choice other than Carmen Chu.

Are you supporting anyone for District 6 Supervisor in 2010? (rank up to 3)

No endorsements at this time

Are you supporting anyone for District 8 Supervisor in 2010? (rank up to 3)

No endorsements at this time

Are you supporting anyone for District 10 Supervisor in 2010? (rank up to 3)

No endorsements at this time

Are you supporting anyone for the School Board in 2010? (list up to 3)

Myself, naturally! No other endorsements at this time

San Francisco entertainment venues have faced a number of challenges recently, from crackdowns by the SFPD and ABC to incidents of violence in and around clubs. What can the City do to promote and improve nightlife?

Oh boy, there's a lot! I'm a former steering committee member of the San Francisco Late Night Coalition and a big nightlife advocate. I've often said that San Francisco should be more like Black Rock City -- more fun, fewer rules.

For starters, the public needs to realize that violence that happens on the streets outside clubs or events is neither the fault nor the responsibility of club owners or event promoters, any more than it is the fault of the city government if people holding competing rallies outside City Hall get into a scuffle.

Violence outside clubs, bars, and similar event venues is mostly the fault of government, for (1) promoting alcohol consumption by banning the use of alternative recreational drugs less prone to abuse, and (2) forcing bars to close at 2am, ejecting lots of alcohol-influenced patrons onto the streets simultaneously.

So lobbying to get those laws changed, and decriminalizing at the local level so that SF resources are not wasted on enforcing them, should be a priority for city officials.

One big change that would benefit SF nightlife is to have BART run 24 hours. This should be accomplished by cutting employee pay -- this would allow more employees to be scheduled, at different hours, providing jobs to more people as well as better service to the public, without increasing the cost to taxpayers.

The city government, as well as the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, should also stop charging people to hold festivals, concerts, and parties in public streets and on public land, and stop restricting their hours of operation. These events are a blessing, and bring more visitors and business to the city, as well as making it a more enjoyable place to live.

What is your position on the Transportation Authority's proposal for congestion pricing in San Francisco?

If the goal is to ease congestion and not to raise revenue, I would support it if balanced by an equal or greater reduction in other government taxes or fees. Otherwise it amounts to just another scheme for government to dig its fingers into peoples' pockets.

One big step that would reduce congestion is to create more parking, so people don't have to spend as much time driving around looking for it. That's a major cause of congestion. This needn't necessarily mean building more parking lots, either -- simply auditing all the street parking and eliminating colored curbs where they are outdated or unjustified could create many additional spaces. Way too much space around fire hydrants is coded red, for instance. How much space do you really need to attach a fire hose to a hydrant? A couple feet clearance should be more than sufficient. Private driveways are often cut too wide, and in many cases streets themselves are wider than necessary, and could accommodate diagonal parking, such as exists on some of the blocks of Noe Street north of Market, without reducing the number of lanes.

Another thing that could be done is to encourage more of a 24-hour culture in San Francisco, to reduce the commuter rush of massive numbers of people arriving at and leaving the downtown area around the same times. Eliminating restrictions and permit requirements on the hours during which a business could be open would go a long way toward encouraging people to work in the business district at night, since there would be more restaurants and other businesses open to cater to them. This of course also ties in to the previous question.

Would you advocate for any changes to the Hunters Point Shipyard project?

Unfortunately this project is probably too far advanced for most of the things that need to be changed to be corrected.

The entire approach taken by the city government -- turning all the land over to one big contractor for a single massive development, accompanied by endless conditions, requirements, and paperwork -- is fundamentally flawed.

We need an approach that maximizes competition and choice, minimizes red tape, and puts small business on an equal footing with larger corporations. The Board of Supervisors should have resold the land obtained from the Navy in very small parcels and basically let people do their own thing, instead of trying to centrally plan it. This would have enabled lots of small mom & pop developers, and even individuals wishing to build their own homes, to get in on the action instead of just putting everything in the hands of a single large, politically-connected company.

Furthermore, smaller lots mean smaller homes, and smaller homes are more affordable. This is a much more harmonious way to get affordable housing, instead of forcing developers to adhere to quotas. Another way to guarantee more affordable housing would be for the city to sell the land parcels for less than market value. If developers don't have to pay as much for land, then their costs will be lower and they will be able to sell the finished houses at more competitive prices.

Relaxing zoning laws to allow more industrial and mixed uses would also tend to make housing more affordable. For example (harkening back to a previous question), making it clear that nightclubs will be welcome in Hunters Point would make the gentrification of the area less likely, since wealthy people on average tend to be more NIMBY than poorer people who have more pressing concerns.

Please briefly describe the three main priorities you would focus on if elected.

(1) Turn the hierarchy in the SF unified school district upside down, cutting administrator salaries and raising teacher salaries, so that teachers are the highest-paid district employees, and administrators work for them, helping them get the resources they need to be effective in the classroom. Have a teacher site council as fully in charge of the curricula, budget, hiring and firing of non-teaching personnel at each school as state law will allow.

(2) Let every student attend his or her first choice SFUSD school. Expand popular schools to meet demand, and close unpopular schools, starting them afresh under teachers and personnel from the popular schools.

(3) Make education more consumer driven by putting curricula and lesson plans online for parents to review, and giving students detailed information about different teachers and their teaching styles, letting them choose among them before being put into particular classes.