Right on, Shona! Marty Halloran needs to go. It's obvious he doesn't respect the will of the voters and has a personal vendetta against the cannabis community that is interfering with his ability to do his job in a professional manner. If Police Chief Fong is serious about respecting medical cannabis, she will put Halloran on unpaid leave while an investigation of his conduct is undertaken.
Regarding taxes and services and where our money is going, I urge everyone to read the December 10 Examiner article (http://www.sfexaminer.com/local/City_workers_rake_in_raises.html) which reports that the average salary of a San Francisco city employee has gone up 22% since 2005, resulting in the *average* San Francisco city employee now making $91,404, plus $28,513 in benefits, for a total of $119,917 a year!
Meanwhile the streets are still full of homeless people. If this is what compassionate Democrat-run local government looks like -- well, I think leftists who want to help the poor would do better electing Libertarians! You bet we'll cut government, but we'll do it in a humane way, starting with the fat-cats at the top!
On the bright side, it appears that at least Board president Aaron Peskin is now thinking along similar lines and coming to the conclusion that enough is enough. In this past week's Bay Guardian he has proposed a list of reforms that appear to represent a significant break with City Hall business-as-usual (see his op-ed here -- http://www.sfbg.com/entry.php?entry_id=7658&catid=4&volume_id=398&issue_id=409&volume_num=43&issue_num=11) With Peskin now a lame duck Supervisor whose term is about to expire, and the pattern of the cuts undercutting their moral urgency by appearing to be largely aimed at Gavin Newsom, some may say this is too little too late. Nevertheless it's always the right time to do the right thing, so better late than never! If the mayor doesn't like it, let him step up to the plate and propose his own cuts in the fat to be found on the Supervisors' side of the fence. Everyone who wants more compassionate and sensible spending priorities should call their Supervisor and urge him or her to support Peskin's calls to:
• "Tighten our belt at the management level and eliminate all but the most essential positions that pay more than $100,000 per year"
• Lay off all new staff hired since November 2007 who are paid more than $100,000 a year
• Listen to the voters and eliminate the "Community Justice Court" which was rejected by more than 57 percent of San Francisco's electorate
• Put people before spin and take a bite out of the more than $10 million the city spends on public relations by reducing the mayor's PR staff to two people
• Cut the duplicative Small Business Assistance Center which costs nearly $800,000 a year
• Eliminate the "chief's aides" that chauffer Fire Department chiefs around the city at a cost of more than $2 million a year
• Renegotiate fire and police contracts that call for union members in those departments to get 7% raises
• Reduce the nearly $4 million a year the city gives the opera and symphony by 50% -- these well-endowed institutions can support themselves
At a minimum, Peskin should also add to his list of wasteful and unnecessary spending the estimated $11.4 million a year that the city government blows on its morality crusade of arresting and prosecuting consenting adults for prostitution, and the expenses incurred by undercover cops still harassing people for selling small amounts of marijuana despite the "lowest priority" legislation passed repeatedly by both voters and the Board of Supervisors.
Love & Liberty,
((( starchild )))