Chiu and Herrera roll up their sleeves for spring cleaning in City Hall


For some time now, oft-labeled “power brokers” with undue influence in San Francisco city government have taken heat for failing to register as lobbyists. At the same time, politically connected insiders are often criticized for manipulating the permitting process for major real estate developments far outside the public gaze.

It’s said that sunshine is the best disinfectant. Yesterday, City Attorney Dennis Herrera and Board of Supervisors President David Chiu introduced a package of reforms designed to shed more light on lobbyists’ practices.Read more »

Ethics Commission wants to hide its own flaws


The Ethics Commission has serious problems. A detailed report by Board of Supervisors Budget Analyst Harvey Rose, comparing SF's ethics rules and enfocement to that of Los Angeles, found a long list of ways that this city is falling short. The supervisors asked the commission to have a robust discussion of the findings and propose reforms.Read more »

Mayor Lee and high ethical standards


If Mayor Ed Lee thinks that a person who pled guilty to false imprisonment can't do the job of San Francisco sheriff, he's welcome to say that. He would hardly be alone in that position, and it's one that a fair number of progressives support.

But I didn't know whether to laugh or puke when I heard his statement on the suspension:

Sheriff Mirkarimi's actions and confession of guilt clearly fall below these standards of decency and good faith, rightly required of all public officials.Read more »

More backroom policy talks with the California Public Utilities Commission


On Dec. 8 and 9, high-ranking state government officials will attend a private conference with executives from Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E), Chevron, AECOM, and other major energy industry players at Cavallo Point, a luxury resort in Marin County to talk about distributed generation, a decentralized system for renewable power. It’s a gathering of top governmental officials and industry leaders to talk about policy issues with far-reaching effects on California’s energy future, but members of the general public are not invited. Read more »

Following Recology’s $$$ to Environment Commission and DCCC


If you've been looking for a financial connection between the city's tentative decision to award the next landfill disposal contract to Recology, which plans to dispose of our trash in Yuba County, then you'll be interested in this campaign finance item: Because records show that Recology contributed $5,000 last year to SF Forward, a San Francisco Chamber of Commerce political action committee, which also got Money  from Bechtel, Medjool, PG&E, Charles Schwab, and Shorenstein Realty.

Recology Vice President and Group Manager John Legnitto is Chamber’s Chair Elect. Read more »