Green City

Expanding movement

Day of Action started on UC campuses, but it's grown to encompass wider calls to fund public education and services

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rebeccab@sfbg.com

When University of California Berkeley students staged building occupations last fall, their furious, brazen response to startling tuition hikes and staff cutbacks captured the attention of the world, recalling the radical actions of earlier generations.

Yet the thrust behind the March 4 Strike and Day of Action, a mass mobilization for public education and services that is reaching into all corners of the state and spreading nationwide, appears to stem from widespread agitation that extends well beyond the flare-ups on college campuses. Read more »

Questioning Prop. 16

The bill vs. CCAs

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rebeccab@sfbg.com

GREEN CITY In Sacramento, at a Feb. 26 joint legislative committee hearing about Proposition 16, a ballot initiative that Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. plans to sink $35 million into, PG&E executive Ed Bedwell found himself in the hot seat. Sen. Mark Leno and Assembly Member Tom Ammiano, who both represent San Francisco, joined Assembly Member Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael) in grilling Bedwell about an initiative that seems to be aimed directly at the efforts of San Francisco and Marin counties to establish alternative power providers to PG&E. Read more »

Bill Bennett, Public-Interest Fighter, dies at 92

California loses a "determined old warrior"

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On the front page of the Oct. 19, l988 issue of the Guardian, we ran a big picture of Bill Bennett with a caption that read: "Bill Bennett, the only public official in California to take on PG&E." The California Public Utilities Commission was poised to make yet another multibillion giveaway to the Pacific Gas and Electric Co. — and not one public official in San Francisco was on hand to monitor the CPUC hearings and testify about the horrible impacts the rate hike to pay for the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant would have on the public. Read more »

Fixing the Foundation

City College entities battle over fiscal oversight in the wake of a money laundering scandal

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By Anna Widdowson

news@sfbg.com

The Foundation of City College of San Francisco is seeking to shield its financial dealings from public scrutiny under a new agreement that could limit the college district's oversight of fundraising done in its name.Read more »

The people vs. corporate power

June ballot showcases the lopsided struggle against big money interests

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steve@sfbg.com

The June 8 election is shaping up to be one that pits the people against powerful business interests, a contest that will demonstrate either that money still rules or that growing public opposition to corporate con-jobs has finally taken root.Read more »

Mission: save Dolores Park

Park goers will still have access to their beloved green space- but change is gonna come

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By Brady Welch

news@sfbg.com

Local blogs were abuzz recently with reports that renovations of Mission Dolores Park would close the beloved green space for a full 16 months beginning in December 2011.

While the prospect of such an extended closure of this popular social hub — indeed, a veritable Dark Ages in the communal culture of Mission and Castro residents is troubling to consider — the Guardian has since learned that the construction will likely be completed in stages.Read more »

Labor's love lost

SEIU's internal problems are rippling through San Francisco's political scene

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Note: This file has been corrected from an earlier version.

rebeccab@sfbg.com

Two recent events could have major implications for Service Employees International Union Local 1021 — San Francisco's largest public-sector union and an important ally for progressives — for better or for worse. And this union's fate seems closely tied to that of the progressive movement in San Francisco.Read more »

Logging helps the planet?

"In California, forestry is the only sector that has a positive effect on air quality," says Sierra Pacific Industries

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By Jobert Poblete

news@sfbg.com

The Center for Biological Diversity (CBD), an environmental group with offices in San Francisco, filed a series of lawsuits last month challenging the state's approval of 15 logging plans it says do not adequately address greenhouse gas emissions and climate impacts. But the loggers take the opposite stance, arguing that their trees capture carbon and lessen global warming.Read more »

Sunshine and shadows

How downtown tried to scuttle a law protecting city parks

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tredmond@sfbg.com

It was, the San Francisco Chronicle proclaimed, the end of the world for development in the city, or at least something close to that. A ballot measure, sponsored by Sup. David Chiu, restricting new buildings from casting shadows on city parks "could imperil major development projects," a Jan. 28 article by John Cote said. "Everything from a new wing at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to the expansion of the Moscone Center and creation of a new downtown core around a rebuilt Transbay Terminal could be affected."Read more »

Clipboard clash

Constitutional convention campaign says it's being sabotaged by the ballot-initiative industry

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rebeccab@sfbg.com

When John Grubb switched jobs a few months ago to work for Repair California, a nonprofit that aims to remedy Sacramento's political dysfunction by revising the state Constitution, he never imagined how ruthless the political world could be for a public figure advocating for reform.Read more »