Politics Blog

Court smacks SF Planning Dept.

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By Tim Redmond

The Chron buried the news deep in the local section, but a June 22 state Court of Appeal decision on the validity of the Housing Element of the city's General Plan was a huge slap in the face to the mayor and the planning director.

In essence, the court ruled that the city can't adopt the new Housing Element without doing an environmental impact report. Read more »

Lennar's Bad News Bears

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Marc McGuire, a tile contractor from San Diego, and CALPASC’s Brad Diede on CNBC this spring to discuss accusations that Lennar has been extorting its contractors

A few months ago, we reported how Lennar had been giving contractors a choice between a rock or a hard place: reduce their unpaid invoices by up to 20 percent—or be excluded from bidding work for a minimum of six Read more »

The Mayor's Offensive

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By Sarah Phelan

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Photo by Charles Russo
Mayor Gavin Newsom only shows up to self congratulatory budget events that seek to make him look good

Mayor Gavin Newsom is happy to be center stage when it comes to attacking Sup. Chris Daly. At last week's budget rally, Newsom made it look as if Daly had unilaterally decided to cut funding to pothole repairs and police academies. Read more »

White lines

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By Steven T. Jones
Sup. Chris Daly may have crossed a line by suggesting during a budget hearing that Mayor Gavin Newsom uses cocaine, but the mayor isn't entitled to his overblown righteous indignation. Why? Read more »

Sex, Lies and Videotapes

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By Sarah Phelan
with editorial research by Joseph Plaster

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photo by Terrie Frye
Admit it! Would you even be reading this story if Daly hadn't said "allegations of cocaine use"?

For those few running dogs of the press who actually hung around for Tuesday night's four-hour hearing on proposed cuts to public health programs, Sup. Read more »

FIRE DRILL AT THE CHRON BUILDING!!! Oh wait, it’s just empty from all the cuts. Sorry.

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By G.W. Schulz

During a conversation we had recently with a certain interview subject regarding layoffs at the Chron, this person was sure to correct us by distinguishing between actual “layoffs” and “buyouts.” Well, sure, buyouts might taste slightly better, but they’re both still poison for your career. Read more »

Merc announces 40 newsroom layoffs

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By G.W. Schulz

Well, it's not the 60 or so jobs former San Mateo County Times editor John Bowman said were pending, but it's still a big hunk of the Merc's newsroom. And no one can argue this will mean more news. In fact, considering reporters are asked everyday to do more with the Web (like a quick online story plus their full-length for the deadwood edition) those surviving cuts at the dailies should be getting a little pissed off by now. Read more »

Police-records legislation on its way to state Assembly just as SFPD officer is charged with lewd act

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By G.W. Schulz

UPDATE! Here's an SB 1019 alert from the Northern California ACLU.

Have you caught up with this week’s lurid law-enforcement story involving an SFPD officer facing criminal charges in the East Bay for sleeping with a 14-year-old prostitute? Read more »

Merc workers plan protest of job cuts

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By G.W. Schulz

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UPDATE! I failed to include a date for the protest first time around. It will be this Tuesday, June 26.

Employees of the embattled San Jose Mercury News announced earlier today that they intended to picket the newspaper over expected job cuts at the peninsula daily.

The jobs of 30 ad-production workers will immediately be affected, and editorial and composing room employees were already facing planned cuts. Read more »

Nudity Merited

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By Sarah Phelan

Photo courtesy of Jack Gescheidt's Tree Spirit Project.

A City of Oakland plan to cut down 224 trees along Lake Merritt has stalled, thanks to a Friends of the Lake lawsuit. Then this Saturday, traffic stalled as demonstrators stripped, some climbing into the tall eucalyptus trees, while others prefered to keep their feet on the ground. But was their nudity merited? Eucalyptus trees tend to arouse the passions of both types of Tree People. Those who love all trees, and those who love all other trees except eualyptuses. So, why are some people hating on eucalyptuses? Read more »