Sarah Phelan

Yee plans to block Crane’s UC Regents confirmation


Citing UC Regent David Crane’s op-ed in the Chronicle, in which Crane questioned if public sector workers should have collective bargaining rights, Sen. Leland Yee says he wants to stop Crane’s UC Regents confirmation and protect the vital services provided in our communities by public employees.”

In his op-ed, Crane argues that “collective bargaining for public employees in California changed the balance of power and - most importantly - gave public employees power over their compensation and benefits.”

But Yee, who is running in the San Francisco mayor’s race this fall, counters that the only public employees at the UC that have any real power over their compensation are the top executives. Read more »

Beware the billionaires behind pension reform


SEIU Local 1021 leader Gabriel Haaland just pointed me to a Chronicle op-ed in which David Crane asks if public employees should have collective bargaining rights:

The Chron describes Crane as a Democrat, who was an adviser to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, and now lectures on public policy at Stanford University and serves on the UC Board of Regents and the California High-Speed Rail Authority. Read more »

Local hire victory party a political who's who


The atmosphere at the local hiring victory party that Laborers Local 261 held at its Union Hall this week  was positively elated. Beer, wine and yummy pupusas flowed, commendations were made, and live drumming gave the event a playful edge. And it didn’t hurt that the place was crammed with political candidates, past, present and future, as San Francisco gears up for a a mayor, D.A. and sheriff’s race, this fall.Read more »

Paul Henderson denies D.A. deal with Willie Brown


Paul Henderson doesn’t mince words when it comes to debunking the notion that Willie Brown helped him get his new job as Mayor Ed Lee’s public policy czar. Or that his decision to drop out of the D.A.’s race was in exchange for his new job. Read more »

Henderson drops out of D.A’s office and race, SFPD Chief turned D.A. Gascón appoints DeBerry as new chief of staff


I wondered what Willie Brown was talking about when he wrote that making sure that D.A. office insider Paul Henderson was “taken care of” was one of only two details to be worked out, following former Mayor Gavin Newsom’s shocking last-minute appointment of former police chief George Gascón as the next District Attorney  And now I think I found out: Henderson, who was former D.A. Kamala Harris’ chief of administration and her preferred pick, announced yesterday that he is dropping out of the D.A.’s race and will serve as Lee's public safety czar. Read more »

Protest this weekend in support of Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, Morocco uprisings


There’s a protest this weekend in San Francisco, in support of folks in Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, Morocco, and other Arab popular movements as they struggle against dictatorships and repressive governments.

Folks are invited to meet Saturday, February 26 at 1 p. m. at the U.N. Plaza at Market and 7th Street in San Francisco for a march that will feature 20 organizations, including Arab Resource and Organizing Center and American Friends Service Committee. [Update: Just got a call from ANSWER Coalition to say they did not approve the inclusion, by protest organizers, of their name as a feature organization at Saturday's protest, because they do not agree with some of the wording in the protest organizers' press release.]

“Across Arab nations popular movements for governmental, social, and economic change are arising daily since the start of 2011, with people going to the streets in the thousands and millions,” states a press release from march organizers. “ In many cases, these popular movements are being met by extreme use of force at the hands of governments and dictators whose repression has been supported by foreign assistance from the US.  The most horrific of this repression has been witnessed internationally through social media broadcasting from Libya and Bahrain, where hundreds of innocent protesters have been massacred.”,p. Read more »

Time to start building a cold frame


No, I'm not talking about Democrats building shelters against the big chill that the Republicans are trying to bring down on public sector workers, and the impact of that push on folks engaged in pension reform debates in San Francisco. Instead, I'm looking at the possibility that snow could fall at sea level around San Francisco this weekend for the first time in 35 years--and wondering if gardeners need to start worrying about protecting crops and plants that don’t like icy climes. Read more »

Meet the new boss

Ed Lee has been mayor for six weeks. Does his administration represent a change — or more of the same?


The Guardian hasn't been invited into City Hall's Room 200 for a long time. Former Mayor Gavin Newsom, who frequently criticized this newspaper in his public statements, had a tendency to freeze out his critics, adopting a supercilious and vinegary attitude toward any members of the press who questioned his policy decisions. So it was almost surreal when a smiling Mayor Ed Lee cordially welcomed two Guardian reporters into his stately office Feb. 15.Read more »

Is Adachi's pension reform a Tea Party initiative?


With all eyes on Wisconsin, local labor leaders are suggesting that Public Defender Jeff Adachi’s proposed retirement/health plan reforms are really Tea Party initiatives, even as Adachi threatens to place another Measure B-like initiative on the fall ballot if city leaders can't agree on a fix for the city's fiscal problemsRead more »

Onek to SFPD Chief turned D.A. Gascon: release records of officers cleared in shootings


Calitics has a revealing letter from David Onek, a senior fellow at the Berkeley Center for Criminal Justice, a former member of the San Francisco Police Commission and a candidate in the 2011 District Attorney’s race, demanding greater transparency from the D.A.’s office when it comes to explaining why officers have been cleared in officer-related shootings. Read more »