Props E (Tree Maintenance) & P (Competitive Bidding)

Hi All. Here are the last two before tomorrow's meeting.

Prop E - City Responsibility for Maintaining Street Trees. This is a
set-aside of $19 million per year for The City to take back responsibility
for the maintenance of street trees. This would also cover any sidewalk
damage caused by the trees, but for other sidewalk repairs unrelated to
tree damage, the adjacent property owner would still be responsible for the
sidewalk care and maintenance. Would also limit the liability of adjacent
property owners regarding injury or property damage resulting from The
City's failure to maintain the street tree, but this provision won't kick
in until July 1, 2017. Normally we are opposed to set-asides, but in this
case, I think we should make an exception because this was originally going
to be a parcel tax of around $35/year, and they compromised by making it a
set-aside. A set-aside is better than a parcel tax, especially since the
property owners weren't consulted about putting in the trees and have been
getting hit with the maintenance bills for the last few years, one
neighborhood at a time. For a city whose politicians have absolutely no
fiscal responsibility, I think they should be rewarded for *not* enacting a
new tax. The set-aside, like all set-asides, is still problematic, but
street tree maintenance is normally a basic government service (and used to
be before), so all things considered, it's a reasonable measure. Recommend
a YES vote.

Prop P - Competitive Bidding for Affordable Housing Projects on City-Owned
Property. We don't care much "affordable" housing, let alone City-owned
property, but we're stuck with them anyway. What this measure does is add
additional requirements for The City before it can provide financing to
developers to build "affordable" housing. The key here is the number of
proposals that are submitted by developers for a project. Currently the
Mayor's Office of Housing & Community Development (MOHCD) can select a
qualified developer for an affordable housing project even if only one
developer submits a proposal. This ballot measure says that The City
cannot proceed with the housing project if it receives less than 3
different developer proposals. To me, this looks like a good thing because
it will make it harder for The City to get involved in yet another housing
project, which it shouldn't be involved in in the first place. Looks like
it would actually make it harder for The City to give out taxpayer
money--for a change, a limitation on governmental largesse. Recommend a
YES vote.

Please review/comment and vote.

By the way, a representative from the Mayor's Office may drop in to our
meeting tomorrow to present on 3 of the less interesting ballot measures
not discussed yet. I didn't exactly invite him, but since we're at the
library and it must be open to the public, I couldn't exactly say no. He
was interested in 6 ballot measures, but 3 of them are already decided (H,
J, & K), so I told him that we won't be spending any time on them at the
meeting (he's on the wrong side of J & K but at least he's opposed to the
Public Advocate measure). Since the 3 he's opposed to (D, L, & M) aren't
decided yet, I didn't see any harm in giving him a few minutes (and I did
warn him that time is tight so his speaking time is limited) to advocate
his position. Besides I think it's a bad habit to get into of not
listening to viewpoints other than our own (like the various Democrat clubs
that now no longer invite folks to speak at their endorsement meetings and
just have one of their own present the pros and cons), so it won't kill us
to listen to a non-Libertarian argue his case for a few minutes. Who
knows--he might make sense! At any rate, if he does show up, I'll let him
present early in the meeting, so he can leave once he's done. I'm not 100%
comfortable having a "spy" amongst us for too long. Since the ongoing
battle with the Department of Elections over the printing of the Prop B
argument is still going on and Supervisor Katy Tang has graciously offered
to help us, I don't want any mention of her name in the meeting which could
get back to City Hall and cause trouble for her, so we won't be discussing
the Prop B saga *at all* during the meeting tomorrow. Any developments can
always be discussed on the Activist List.

Don't forget the Gary Johnson watch party tomorrow noon to 3 at Union
Square! *Also our meeting is in the 1st floor meeting room, not the 4th
floor, and it starts at 4:00, not 3:00.*


Thank you Aubrey. Agreed. That's good someone from the mayor's office is coming to the meeting. Kind of a compliment. When has that ever happened before? Sorry I am out of town and cannot attend.


Hi Mike. We'll miss you, and thanks for letting us know. Yes, I was
rather surprised when the guy who contacted me said he was a rep from the
Mayor's Office. That hasn't happened since I've been active. But will the
taxpayers have to pay overtime for him to come visit us?! I've been
finishing up the ballot measures, and not all of his stances are bad, in my
opinion, though of course he is supporting the increase in the sales tax
and the homelessness/transportation setasidesđŸ˜£.


Hi Aubrey,

Thank you for the ballot analysis. I concur with both your recommendations, but with reservations. We are still talking about a set aside, so now LPSF cannot make the blanket statement about being opposed to set asides; however, the liabilities to the homeowners are good to be gone! Regarding the housing bidding, heck it will slow things down and increase costs even more, but as you say maybe things can slow down to such a crawl that San Francisco will get out of the subsidized housing business. So, my suggestion is also YES on both.

PS. Aubrey, as a card-carrying conspiracy theorist, I am encouraging LPSF to act with extreme caution when dealing with the City Hall visitor. My thinking is that LPSF is the only consistent challenger to the City's agendas (of which I am proud), and there is a possibility, remote but still present, that LPSF might have gotten into someone's crosshairs. I am thinking especially of the Peskin incident (which I believe LPSF should not let up on). When one of our friends called him a little s--t head at the GGLR one time, he was not kidding. And, yes, Tang is a treasure to have on LPSF's side. Everybody likes her based on what I see in the Neighborhood Watch meetings.

PPS. I will post the Money Changers event this morning as soon as I can.