A new progressive agenda - Page 4

A series of community forums helped us craft a platform for the next mayor

New construction in Mission Bay: Are we building a community -- or building a city for rich people?

1. Establish as policy that San Francisco will step in where the state and federal government have left people behind — and that local taxation policy should reflect progressive values.

2. Make budget set-asides a budget floor rather than a percentage of the budget.

3. Examine what top city executives are paid.

4. Promote public power, public broadband and public cable as a way to bring the city millions of dollars.

5. Support progressive taxes that will bring in at least $250 million a year in permanent new revenue.

6. Change the City Charter to eliminate unilateral mid-year cuts by the mayor.

8. Pass a Charter amendment that: (a) Requires the development of a comprehensive long-term plan that sets the policies and strategies to guide the implementation of health and human services for San Francisco's vulnerable residents over the next 10 years, and (b) creates a planning body with the responsibility and authority to develop the plan, monitor and evaluate its implementation, coordinate between policy makers and departments, and ensure that annual budgets are consistent with the plan.

9. Collect existing money better.

10. Enact a foreclosure transfer tax.




Background: In the past 10 years, San Francisco has lost 24,000 people ages 12-24. Among current youth, 5,800 live in poverty; 6,000 have no high school degree; 7,000 are not working or attending school; 1,200 are on adult probation.

A full 50 percent of public school students are not qualified for college studies. Too often, the outcome is dictated by race; school-to-prison is far too common.

Trust between immigrants and the police is a low point, particularly since former Mayor Gavin Newsom gutted the sanctuary ordinance in 2008 after anti-immigrant stories in the San Francisco Chronicle.

Some 70 percent of students depend on Muni, but the price of a youth pass just went from $10 to $21.

Agenda items:

1. Recognize that there's a separate role for probation and immigration, and keep local law enforcement from joining or working with immigration enforcement.

2. Improve public transportation for education and prioritize free Muni for youth.

3. Create family-friendly affordable housing.

4. Restore the recreation direction for the Recreation and Parks Department.

5. Implement police training to treat youth with respect.

6. Don't cut off benefits for youth who commit crimes.

7. Shift state re-alignment money from jails to education.



Background: When it comes to land use, the laws on the books are pretty good. The General Plan is a good document. But those laws aren't enforced. Big projects get changed by the project sponsor after they're approved.

Land use is really about who will live here and who will vote. But on a policy level, it's clear that the city doesn't value the people who currently live here.

Climate change is going to affect San Francisco — people who live near toxic materials are at risk in floods and earthquakes.

San Francisco has a separate but unequal transportation system. Muni is designed to get people downtown, not around town — despite the fact that job growth isn't happening downtown.

San Francisco has a deepwater port and could be the Silicon Valley of green shipping.

San Francisco has a remarkable opportunity to promote renewable energy, but that will never happen unless the city owns the distribution system.


Agenda items:

1. Promote the rebirth of heavy industry by turning the port into a center for green-shipping retrofits.

2. Public land should be for public benefit, and agencies that own or control that land should work with community-based planning efforts.


We of course, cannot do that, because if all savings were mandated to go to consumers, there would then be no funds available to maintain the system, and to do capital improvements in order to expand the system and incorporate renewables and efficiency.

I'm fine with a mandate that keeps all of the savings out of the City general fund, and that instead all revenues would have to be kept within the utility itself, but mandating that all savings go to ratepayers would undermine the whole system by underfunding infrastructure.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Sep. 19, 2011 @ 12:47 pm

Obviously PG&E makes a profit (well, maybe not, they went bankrupt, but let's ignore that for now).

That profit is what's left after the costs you cited have been deducted from the revenues.

So, if PG&E make, say, a thousand a year net profit on each household, then each household gets a thousand off their bills. It should be "revenue neutral" for the City - not a cash cow for their favorite pork project and subway to nowhere.

The formula might be more complex than that, but those computations are already made in determining the utility rates and what's a fair profit for PG&E. We're already doing the sums - the only difference is that we the people get the money, and not Chris Daly.

Do it that way and you have my vote. As long as you can also borrow the capital to buy the utility at a fair market price, funded by revenue bonds that won't touch the general fund.

But not a penny to the politicians. They can't be trusted.

Posted by PaulT on Sep. 19, 2011 @ 1:15 pm

Now that you have clearly established that you are completely out of touch with reality by hilariously claiming that PG&E might not be making a profit, I think we're done.

And the San Bruno explosion shows that PG&E infrastructure is under capitalized showing that we need to ensure the ability to fully capitalize a municipal system.

Now, go ahead and get in the last word, last word boy...

Posted by Eric Brooks on Sep. 19, 2011 @ 1:45 pm

My guess is that we are both right. Before he was on the SFPUC Sklar was apparently pro municipal power. But once Newsom appointed him to the SFPUC that definitely changed.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Sep. 19, 2011 @ 11:42 am

I hope all the voters out there read both pension measures and once you get over your outrage vote no on both C and D. There are nothing progressive about either.

Posted by Guest Brenda Barros on Sep. 22, 2011 @ 7:15 am

Prop D:

-Prop D has a sliding scale for contributions while Prop C asks the same of a 50k worker and a 100k worker.

-Prop D exempts < $50k workers (Prop C copied this.)

-Prop D doesn't touch anyone's health care while Prop C seeks to reduce employee and retiree health care by flipping control of the Health Services Board. City retirees loathe Prop C.

So yes, if you believe no reforms are needed you vote for neither. If you are voting for the more progressive one, you vote for Prop D. City employees who earn less than 100k and are convinced one of the two will pass, will be voting for Prop D.

No one will "read" Prop C - it's 285 pages....

Posted by Guest on Sep. 22, 2011 @ 10:13 am