Steven T. Jones

SF's Halloween fears trump transit

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jack.jpgNobody is quite sure what will happen in the Castro for the supposedly canceled Halloween tomorrow night, but some of those who resent the city's Grinch attitude plan to protest or show up anyway, just for the helluva it. Meanwhile, Sup. Chris Daly and BART director Tom Radulovich have jointly authored a letter strongly condemning the heavy-handed unilateralism that caused BART and Muni to cancel transit service to the area.
Boo!

Newsom's interests vs. San Francisco's

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I was writing a story about the long-term damage that Prop. H -- which will entitle every land owner to build new parking lots, regardless of their traffic-inducing impacts or the desires of certain neighborhoods to limit parking -- could do to San Francisco when Mayor Gavin Newsom called me. Actually, it was just Newsom's voice in a robo-call urging me and others to vote against Prop. Read more »

Airlines demand corporate welfare

After losing in court, big corporations are pushing city policy makers to exempt them from paying hotel taxes
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news@sfbg.com

The major airlines that serve the Bay Area, with the help of the Hotel Council of San Francisco, are trying to get out of paying millions of dollars in taxes to the city by claiming the right to use a law that was designed to help San Francisco's poorest residents. And they're threatening to prevent their employees from staying in the city if the Board of Supervisors doesn't acquiesce to the corporate welfare demand.Read more »

Fisher and his powerful friends

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Why does Republican billionaire Don Fisher have such influence in San Francisco? Read more »

Influential fashion designer dies

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Clothing designer Tiffa Novoa -- whose neo-tribal aesthetic transformed the fashion sense of the Burning Man world, starting with the El Circo tribe that she was a part of, and trickled out into the larger Bay Area urban culture -- has died at the age of 32. Unconfirmed reports indicate that she had a fatal drug reaction in Bali, Indonesia, where she was staying recently. Read more »

More parking = more cars = gridlock

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I attended a Transportation Authority workshop last night on its new Mobility, Access, and Pricing Study (which, among other things, might recommend a fee to drive downtown, just like London, Rome, and Stockholm have) -- and I came away more convinced than ever that San Francisco is screwed if downtown greedheads fool people into Read more »

41st Anniversary Special: Wrecked park

Chronic underfunding has made the Recreation and Park Department a prime privatization target
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news@sfbg.com

The San Francisco Recreation and Park Department has a long history of maintaining parks, community centers, and other recreational offerings. In fact, it controls more land in the city than any other entity, public or private. But after seeing its budget repeatedly slashed during lean fiscal years, the underfunded department has become a prime target for some controversial privatization schemes.Read more »

41st Anniversary Special: Connect the Connects

Newsom uses a shadowy private organization to shield his administration's actions from public scrutiny
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steve@sfbg.com

Mayor Gavin Newsom has created an entirely new branch of city government that is private, funded by undisclosed corporate donations, staffed by volunteers who are often city employees or his campaign donors, and unaccountable to any internal controls or outside scrutiny.

Yet rather than being a cause for concern, Newsom has touted San Francisco Connect and its four subprograms — Project Homeless Connect, Tech Connect, Green Connect, and Project Children and Families Connect — as his proudest achievement, a model he is actively exporting to other citie Read more »

Examiner sells out San Francisco

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The San Francisco Examiner called Prop. H “a veritable minefield of unintended consequences. It could actually take away parking, harm business, reduce new housing and drive out neighborhood retail. Read more »

Not dead yet

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Guardian photo by Charles Russo
Chicken John Rinaldi's quest to become the first San Francisco mayoral candidate to qualify for a grant of taxpayer money is still lumbering along like the zombies that attacked him last week, more than a month after the Aug. 28 deadline for raising $25,000 from at least 250 city residents. Read more »