Bert Hill is running to represent western San Francisco on BART's Board of Director, taking on incumbent James Fang, the city's only Republican elected official. But even though Hill has the support of Democratic Party and a wide variety of progressive organizations, voters won't see their party affiliation in this nonpartisan race. Instead, the race could be a referendum on an agency that Hill says isn't responsive enough to the needs and experiences of riders.Read more »
Theresa Sparks says her first priority is jobs and public safety. She wants to more agressively pursue clean technology, with tax breaks if necessary. She wants more development in the district (but "smart development.") She argues that the city should do an "incubator," to really focus on new technologies.Read more »
Emily Murase has a lot on her plate. The mother of two daughters in the San Francisco public school system, she is also the executive director of the San Francisco Department on the Status of Women, a member of the Rosa Parks School Site Council, the Japanese Bilingual Bicultural Program Parent Teacher Community Council, and the Lowell Alumni Association Board of Directors; she also sits on the boards of the Lakeshore Acres Improvement Club, the San Francisco Girl Scouts, and Democratic Women in Action. Read more »
Eric Smith's passion is environmental justice. He's the director of Green Depot, a coalition of biodiesel organizations, and has helped lead the city to switch its buses and official vehicles to the cleaner fuel. He's working on ways to get the city to move its waste by train. And he talks about the important of green jobs (and not just green jobs for the top college graduates.)Read more »
Tony Kelly's been involved in land-use and development battles in the district for more than a decade -- and it shows. He talks about zoning, redevelopment, and urban finance with the ease of an expert. He complains that funding affordable housing just by asking developers to include a little bit in their market-rate units is "a sucker's game." He talks about the need for public-sector investment to handle the major influx of population projected for the district over the next 20 years. He's also thought a lot about city finance, and suggests, among other things, that San Francisco demand that the University of California pay some sort of fee in lieu of the $60 million the giant institution doesn't pay in local property taxes. Read more »
DeWitt Lacy wants District 10 to get its fair share -- of the city's economic pie, of the programs that serve San Franciscans, of the parks and infrastructure that San Francisco pays for. He complains that the district has some of the worse environmental problems in the city "and we don't even protect the parkland we have now." He's taking a generally progressive approach -- he opposes sit-lie, is against the gang injunctions, and supports all the revenue measures on the fall ballot. He also thinks the city makes it too hard on the working class; in fact, he complained about the cost of parking tickets, saying they're a real burden for people trying to support a family on moderate incomes. And he's concerned that the emphasis on housing in the city's Eastern Neighborhoods Plan could impact light industry. Read more »
Steve Moss sees the future of District 10 as a great opportunity -- for all of California. "We are a solution to the state's problem," he told us. Development in D 10 can help solve suburban sprawl and reduce commuting time and build a more sustainable state. But that means the state and the region need to help pay for the infrastructure needed to accomodate some 40,000 new residences over the next 20 years.Read more »
Rebecca Prozan, a candidate for Disctrict 8, has the endorsement of incumbent Sup. Bevan Dufty, and she and Dufty seem to have a lot in common. “I’m able to bring both sides together,” she told us, noting that D-8 constituents “like people who are independent thinkers, who are right up the middle.” Read more »
Editors note: The Guardian is interviewing candidates for the fall elections, and to give everyone the broadest possible understanding of the issues and our endorsement process, we're posting the sound files of all the interviews on the politics blog. Our endorsements will be coming out Oct. 6th.
Debra Walker, a candidate for District 6, has obviously thought a lot about sustainable development -- and she isn’t just focused on what building materials are being selected. In addition to planning in ways that would limit traffic congestion and still make sense years from now when the city is grappling with sea-level rise, affordability ranks near the top of her list of priorities.
“Can we agree that we are not building enough below-market housing?” she asked. Read more »