Two hearings at SF City Hall today

Two important City Hall meetings today...

(1) Rec & Park Commission meeeting, 2pm, Room 416. Commissioners scheduled to vote on whether to authorize money to create park on land expropriated by eminent domain (701 Lombard); if they don't approve it, this sends the ball back to Board of Supervisors to find money in the general fund, and makes it more likely they may let the owners keep their land. Tell them to VOTE NO!

(2) City Services Committee meeting, 5pm, Room 263. Hearing on a good proposal by Bevan Dufty and the Youth Commission to allow 18 and up establishments to stay open after 2am. Tell them to VOTE YES!

  Details below...

From: "Brian O'Flynn" <bmof@...>
Date: Wed Feb 18, 2004 8:54:44 AM US/Pacific
To:
Subject: 701 IMPORTANT NEWS FLASH
Reply-To: bmof@...

NEWS FLASH

Tomorrow, Thursday February 19, 2004 there is
an extremely important meeting of the Recreation
and Park Commission at 2 pm, room 416, City Hall.
This will be the first meeting after the Vote last week
at the Board of Supervisors which passed eminent
domain on 701 Lombard. The RecPark Commission
previously voted last November to not expend funds
to acquire 701 Lombard. Since the RecPark Commission
is independent of the Board of Supervisors – a
continuation of their ‘ No on 701" policy would
mean that the Board would be forced to find funding
from the General Fund – something extremely difficult
to justify in these times of record deficits.

I encourage you to come and make public comment at
this meeting – there are numerous arguments about
why this acquisition should not go forward:

Public comment may not happen until after 3 pm – so if you
Can’t make it earlier please come then.

Call me with questions or for further information:
415-867-4370

thanks,
Brian

TALKING POINTS:

Park acquisitions should only happen on a strict priority
need basis where the need and priority has been verified
beyond a reasonable doubt. The priority should be established
across all neighborhoods in San Francisco. Parks should
be created on the strict basis or need, not greed / proof
of need not political privilege.

The area around 701 Lombard is one of the areas most
well served by parks in the City and not in need of more
space. There are acres of parks within 3 blocks of the site.
The Playground is not now currently short of space. The
playground is not short of space and is not overused. No
evidence has even been presented to the contrary
The specious argument that District 3 is densely populated
and has the least amount of open space per resident is
grossly misleading. The densest areas with the least amount
of park within District 3 are clearly in the Tenderloin
[ no parks ] and Chinatown. 701 will not serve Chinatown.
Needs at North Beach Playground are those of programs
not of added space.

This acquisition will directly deprive other neighborhoods of
Needed parks – every million spent here will mean no
Acquisitions for a year city wide. 4 million = no parks for
4 years.

The planned closure of Mason Street is opposed by the
community.

This acquisition cost a minimum 4 million dollars and
possibly much, much more. The planned closure of Mason
Street is opposed by the community. It will cause great
problems in the community and will add millions of dollars
of cost

The 701 site is unsuitable for a park – a traffic island
surrounded by heavy traffic and unsafe for children and
residents, car exhaust, extreme wind, etc.

It is unfair to concentrate millions and millions of dollars at
this location – current and upcoming renovations at the
North Beach Playground and Library already total 9 million
dollars. This acquisition and related costs will push this
total to well over 15 million dollars.

There are currently many problems with North Beach
Playground adjacent to the site which will be exacerbated
by this acquisition : drugs, vagrancy, crime, etc

This acquisition will remove 9 badly needed disabled
accessible family units from the community.

The Open Space Committee has failed to recommend
acquisition.

There have been zero neighborhood meetings
or notification.

There has been no studies of what this acquisition
would accomplish.

There has never been a plan or program or budget
of this acquisition.

Acquisitions should only happen in the context of a
comprehensive analysis which provides for their acquisition,
development and improvements AND MAINTENANCE.

This acquisition has circumvented all the established
and proposed acquisition policies and procedures of
the RecPark Department.

LEGISLATION TO ALLOW 18+ AFTERHOURS

I'd like to inform everyone about another exciting legislative development intended to bring the fun back to San Francisco's entertainment scene. Supervisor Bevan Dufty and the San Francisco Youth Commission have teamed up to introduce legislation that would allow 18+ Venues to apply to the Entertainment Commission for an after hours permit. This legislation will be heard at a special session of the City Services Committee of the Board of Supervisors on Thursday, Feb. 19th at 5 pm in Rm. 263 of City Hall.
Some of you may remember that this legislation was up a year ago, sponsored by the SFLNC and (then) Supervisor Mark Leno. Unfortunately, it was vetoed by Mayor Brown and the Supervisors could not overturn his veto. It is a sad fact that the City of San Francisco will send our young adults to war but will not allow us to stay out dancing after 2am. In contrast, most major US Cities allow 18+ afterhours events and some, such as Los Angeles, even allow all age events to go all night.

Supervisor Dufty's Ordinance would simply allow Places of Entertainment that:
(1) are "bona fide public eating places" (which have a Type 47 liquor license that allows 18+) or
(2) do not have a liquor license
to apply to the Entertainment Commission for an after hours permit.

We need a strong turnout at the hearing to help carry this bill into reality. We have a new Mayor and a fresh chance to give our youth the right to dance all night! As a 20 year old, it is not a moment to soon.

Check out <http://sflnc.com/index/readthis/news/youth_crisis/>http://sflnc.com/index/readthis/news/youth_crisis/ for the text of the Ordinance, a resolution from the Youth Commission declaring a "public health" crisis for Youth in San Francisco, for media articles on the 18+ legislation and more...

Spread the word!
Liam Shy
Media and Public Relations Officer, SF Youth Commission
Youth Action Coordinator, SFLNC
<mailto:liamshy@…>liamshy@…

Turns out I misunderstood the email below -- the Rec & Park Commission didn't actually vote on 701 Lombard yesterday. Brian simply wanted to do some preemptive public feedback before they scheduled a vote, because as he told me at City Hall outside the hearing room, because voting is sometimes a mere formality after the real decision has been made behind the scenes.

  There was also some interesting maneuvering going on at the Rec & Park Commission. It turns out they were voting on their annual budget. Commissioner Jim Lazarus (former aide to Diane Feinstein who narrowly lost the race for city attorney last go-round) tried and failed to engage in some nefarious political gamesmanship. I'll write some commentary on this and the late-night hearing for the LPSF weblog later.

  One of the young dance advocates at the hearing told me his beliefs are basically Libertarian. I gave him some literature and got his email address, so I'll send him an inquiry-response email.

Yours in liberty,
            <<< Starchild >>>