Sponsored link
Monday, September 27, 2021

Sponsored link

News + PoliticsThe latest attack on homeless people ...

The latest attack on homeless people …

... and condos vs. gentrification in the Mission: That's what's on The Agenda, Sept. 25 - Oct. 1

San Francisco politicians have a history of attacking and scapegoating homeless people to advance their careers. Remember, Gavin Newsom (who is now campaigning for governor as a progressive) ran for mayor as the backer of measure that took welfare money away from the homeless. Now Sup. Jeff Sheehy has legislation that attacks homeless people who make a little money recycling and selling bicycle parts.

The bill has been around a while. It would criminalize the possession of five or more bicycles or bike parts by somebody living on the street. Sheehy, who is running for re-election in June, says his goal is to prevent bicycle thefts, which are a serious problem. 

Is this a ‘chop shot’ — or a bike lover’s basement?

But the Coalition on Homelessness points out that not everyone who happens to lack a roof over their heads is a criminal.

The reality is that recycling bike parts is one of the few alternative economic venues for impoverished people to make a living.  Destitute people receive donated bike parts, find parts in dumpsters and various locations, trade parts and are able to use their bike skills to repair bikes, build bikes and sell them for life sustaining income.  They often don’t have means to sell their wares on places like Craigslist.  Of course, some unhoused people engage in theft, as do some housed community members, but most of this economy is honest recycling.  This legislation assumes that if you are unhoused and engaging in this element of the economy, you are presumed guilty of theft.

Similarly many avid housed and unhoused bicyclists own multiple bicycles that can be used for varying leisure and practical purposes. Avid cyclists collect accessories to decorate and improve their property. This ordinance allows the confiscation of property simply because the individual is both homeless (forced by destitution into “open air”), and has either five or more bicycle parts, five or more bicycles, three bikes with missing parts, or one frame with cut cables.  We believe this ordinance will violate unhoused peoples’ property rights, simply because they are destitute.

I can tell you: My basement fits the definition of a chop shop in Sheehy’s bill. There are five or more bicycles in various states of repair, five or more bicycle parts, and three bikes with missing parts. None of them are stolen — but more important, I have a house. 

The Sheehy bill would allow the Department of Public Works to decide, unilaterally, whether somebody has property that violates the law, and to confiscate the bicycles or parts. 

Again, from COH:

California law presumes that a person who possesses an item is its rightful owner.  This proposed legislation categorically authorizes the Department of Public Works to impound property without probable cause that bike items are stolen. 

This legislation would result in the frequent confiscation of property from rightful owners, simply because they are destitute and therefore presumed to be thieves. In a truly Orwellian twist, the only way homeless rightful owners could get their property back is to either prove that they did not have multiple bike parts outdoors or to pay an impound fee, while housed people could prove ownership and have their impound fees waived.  There is no means in this legislation for homeless people to prove ownership to avoid confiscation, or to get rightful property back for free.

The measure comes before the Land Use and Transportation Committee Monday/25. The hearing starts at 1:30pm.

 

The supes are set to hold a hearing Tuesday/26 on an issue that’s come up several times in the past but has never been fully resolved: Is a nine-year-old environmental study of the Mission, completed before the city was packed with Uber, Lyft, Chariot, and Google buses, still relevant enough to exempt a large market-rate housing project from further review?

The project at 1726 Mission involves a six-story structure with 40 market-rate condos above what is described as production, distribution, and repair space.

Our Mission No Eviction has called for a full environmental study, particularly to look at the impacts more high-end housing will have on the neighborhood. 

But the city says that when it completed the Eastern Neighborhoods Plan Environmental Impact Report in 2008, it analyzed all the potential impacts from the thousands of new housing units the plan envisioned.

However, the appeal letter states, 

The Department concedes that it has not properly analyzed cumulative impacts of 1924 new units built, entitled, or under review in a small eight block area on each side of Mission Street, from South Van Ness Avenue to Sixteenth Street. 

Besides, as Sup. Aaron Peskin has pointed out in the past, the EIR for the Eastern Neighborhoods predicted about 2,000 new units, and more than 3,400 are now either constructed, approved, or under review.

“The underlying assumptions of the [plan] have, for the most part, proven to be incorrect,” the appeal states.

What this is really about is gentrification, and that argument that high-end housing winds up displacing existing vulnerable communities. In a remarkable statement responding to the appeal, the Planning Department denies that there is any truth to a claim that is pretty well proven by the track record of fancy projects in the Mission:

The Department disagrees with the appellant’s position that development under the Eastern Neighborhoods rezoning and area plans such as the 1726‐1730 Mission Street project are responsible for residential or commercial displacement. As shown in the attached analysis (Attachment A) prepared for the 2675 Folsom Street CEQA appeal, the appellant’s contention that the proposed project would cause or contribute to socioeconomic effects that would in turn result in significant impacts on the physical environment that were not previously identified in the Eastern Neighborhoods PEIR is contrary to the evidence. Based on the available data and expert opinion presented in the academic literature, it appears that the fundamental causes of gentrification and displacement in the Mission and elsewhere in San Francisco are likely related to broader economic and social trends, such as the mismatch between the supply and demand for housing at all levels, the strength of the regional economy, low unemployment, high wages, favorable climate, and a preference for urban lifestyles and shorter commutes. 

That reads like a chapter from the Yimby Party textbook. 

The hearing starts at 3pm.

Tim Redmond
Tim Redmond has been a political and investigative reporter in San Francisco for more than 30 years. He spent much of that time as executive editor of the Bay Guardian. He is the founder of 48hills.
Sponsored link

95 COMMENTS

  1. "The problem is" … no, the problem WAS. And actually, AFAIK, they weren't displaced – cuz the old bldg wasn't torn down before the replaced units were ready in another bldg on the same parcel (well, same group of parcels).

  2. The problem is, those people who have a right to return were displaced for the time it took to build. That creates a lot of hardship, and many wind up having to move away, or being homeless for a period. And they can return, if being forced out of their home doesn't result in relocation or other issues that prevent them from returning. Yes, the landlord got a windfall, and a lot of residents got screwed.

  3. The simple, bottom line is, the City cannot tell people they cannot come, as much as you would clearly like to see that done. We cannot put police officers at places like Greyhound to turn back people who cannot show that they can afford housing. It is sad that people have to, but we cannot pass laws telling people they cannot sleep in public if there is not sufficient housing. Unfortunately, we have a mayor who loves the homeless…as his personal political football. He moves them about, occasionally allows them to have housing, but mostly just uses them for political points with his base.

  4. When the City fails to provide an appropriate alternative, then yes, they have the legal right to live on a public street. If the City refuses to provide a means to properly dispose of garbage, then they have a legal right to do what is necessary. To litter? No, of course, not. To possess stolen property? No, of course not. To be presumed innocent until proven guilty? Damn right they do. if you deny them the means to do so, which in many cases, the City does, then it is the City's fault.

  5. Trinity Plaza. 360 units parked on parcels that now contain almost 2000 units. Yes, it was "torn down". And it was rebuilt. All the people that remained there continued at their old rent levels, in units that were grandfathered to be 'rent contolled' by agreement with the landlord.

    Do you know why the landlord agreed to something he didn't legally have to? Because Chris Daly gave that landlord the right to build several hundred extra units of MARKET RATE HOUSING if he would guarentee the approx. 200 remainging tenants their berth. So not only did the landolord get the allowable 1500 or so units that those parcels were eligible for, but he got additional units that he wasn't eligible to get – just for letting some long-term temants stay there. And the irony is that those 200 remaining units, when they get rerented, will be rented at MARKET RATES! (albeit with caps on increases). But the landlord got an additional 300 units in addition to those.

    Now YIMBYs might say that was a 'win'. I see it as another example of corruption of the system where a politico steps in to posture and preen and grab the glory, and wealthy private parties quietly grab the gold (well, he also basked in the glory of going from a Rent-Control-Destroying Zero to a Housing Hero, for playing along). No – Trinity isn't a case of "tear down". Your sense of entitlement is rather exaggerated.

  6. Yes, in America, we have the right to come and go as we please. The operative word, in this instance, being "go".

    One simply does not have the right to usurp public property for a private residence. If there is not enuf housing that one can afford, that doesn't give someone the right to stay here regardless. They certainly can't stay on private property w/o permission. And the same goes for public property.. Again, the operative word is "if the price is right".

    Perhaps you'd like to pay for someone to stay here – be my guest. They could even stay with you. However, be forewarned, the City in its majestic wisdom has determined that only so many bodies may inhabit a dwelling before it becomes a danger to themselves or others.

  7. Not having read the proposed law, I can't really comment on what it tries to assume.

    However, it does seem a valid societal benefit to not allow the accumulation of 'recycled items' on public property. Except, or course, in properly zoned areas!

    Is the defense of petty criminality marginally noble? Or does it just allow people engaged in that behavior to continue to elude becoming responsible citizens?

  8. Legal rights? To live on the public street as if it were a private residence? To compile piles of garbage? To litter the roadway? To possess stolen prop? In your zeal to defend the indefensible, you have blinded yourself to rationality.

    IF you are 'old enough to be your mother', then maybe its time to take some of that wisdom and help these poor sots by telling them to 'clean up their rooms' before they get any milk & cookies.

  9. Clearly, you are a legend in your own mind. Thanks for playing…. Oh, you might be a bit more impressive it you didn't use the Urban Dictionary to find your insults.

  10. "…old enough to be your mother…" Well, you stomp around in here verbally like a petulant, feral child. My insult was a few tiers above lame, jizzgargler.

  11. When you see parts from 10 bikes next to a tent in a homeless encampment, it is not a stretch to assume that most of those parts are stolen.

  12. There does not have to be a "necessity." Simply put, it is none of your business why anyone comes here. It is their right to come where they please. It might be to start over, it might because they think it is some sort of paradise, it might be because they know the weather is mild, it might because they just like the idea of living in San Francisco… Let me make it clear. You don't have the right to tell people to go elsewhere. No one does. Personally, I wish people were not forced to live in tents. As I have pointed out, the City refuses to provide enough housing. There are more people on waiting lists for a 90 day bed than there are beds. That means, simply put, that everyone in a 90 day bed will be turned out to the streets, and the people on waiting list moved in. So, there will always be more people waiting than sheltered. Only those who receive County Adult Assistance are guaranteed a bed. To keep it, they have to jump through hoops, work 8 hours a week for about $60-$70 a month, and if they miss checking in, or get back too late, can wind up on the street for the night. If they are judged unable to work, they are forced to apply for SSI, and when it is awarded, the City takes back the money they have been paid. If they are lucky, they might be offered housing in an SRO. If they are really lucky, it might be a decent place. More likely, it will be one run by Tenderloin Housing Clinic, which is basically a legally sanctioned slumlord. When people offer real solutions the mayor balks. One company offered to build housing using modular units. Very nice housing, that would be quick to build, and would be rented to the City after it was built by the company. Not interested. Art Agnos suggested accepting a ship from the U.S. Navy that would be turned into a floating shelter. Lots of room, and something that might well appeal to people. Response from the mayor? Crickets.

  13. It happens. Sometimes the building is commercial, sometimes residential. Look at Trinity. It was relatively affordable housing, but the owner saw dollar signs, and got it pushed through.

  14. Really? So you have no problem with a landlord filing a phony eviction, making false claims, and then putting someone in the situation of having to take a chance that the court might side with the landlord? And then being coerced into accepting a deal, not matter how good, that results in the loss of a rent controlled unit? No, of course not. I imagine you would be glad for the landlord who manages to pull off such a scam.

  15. I have no idea. And neither does anyone else. That is the point. This law assumes that pretty much all are. Based on nothing more than pure bigotry. This is why we have police, and detectives, and trials. All this law does is result in the confiscation of property, without a valid basis. It is akin to someone being arrested because a police officer doesn't think a driver of an expensive car looks like he can afford it.

  16. So, you are claiming that people on "public property" give up their legal rights. That is going to be a really interesting argument. Yes, the intent is clear…use the homeless as a political football.

    Sounds to me like you are defending it. Sorry, but you cannot make an assumption like that. The simple bottom line is, the police need to do their jobs, and determine if parts are likely to be stolen, and then make an arrest. A good start would be to require registration and licensing of bikes, just like we do cars. An identification number could be assigned, and parts could be labeled with that ID. If a bike is reported stolen, the number is entered into the database, and a part could be quickly checked.

  17. What is the necessity for coming here from elsewhere? And what is the punishment?

    Homeless from elsewhere? Like 30-40% of the current crop? So why is it necessary to come here?

    You assume the sidewalk is not being used for other things, and that its therefore ok to set up a tent. By the same logic, it would be ok to set up tent in your bldg lobby, or even in a corner of your apt. I know you'd probably be ok with that, but most people wouldn't. And it doesn't prove your nebulous 'principle'. Why do you continue to want to make life crappier?

  18. 'building torn down"??? In San Francisco? Care to elaborate? Its pretty difficult to get a tear down permit in SF. You're overreacting again.

  19. Yes. He's probably 1% wrong in his judgement.

    Wait, maybe 0.1% wrong.

    I dunno. What percentage of those bike do you think were acquired legitimately from a legitimate source? 10%? 50%? 99%?

  20. Campers are storing/keeping these things on public property. Others, like Tim or myself, DON'T have them on public property. IF we did, I don't see why we shouldn't be asked to move them or have them confiscated. Maybe this law doesn't spell that out, but I think the intent is clear.

    Thats not to say that a lot of people don't keep stolen bikes (and other merch) on private property. Not defending that. Just sayin'. That, for the most part, its not a public nuisance issue or public health issue, when ppl hold stuff on private property. Whether the bikes are stolen or not is, to me, a tangential issue in this debate (though wholey legit; you've got a lot of 'splainin' to do to convince me most – or even some – of that stuff was acquired legitimately).

    Citizens are concerned about the clutter and about bike theft. Most thefts just don't get reported (too much hassle). Two of mine fit that profile. But we should allow – ne, encourage – denizens to set up, keep up, and expand this dubious economy? Why? Seems only to benefit them – and at whose expense?

  21. And you don't see the problem with this law? If most people have six, or sixty, or six hundred bikes, they are fine. But a homeless person with six bikes is PRESUMED, without actual evidence, to be a thief, and the bikes are confiscated. And then they have to "prove" that they own the bikes. And you are saying that this is actually good. I strongly suspect this law will be ruled unconstitutional. Shoot, I am not a lawyer, but I think I could argue for that in court and win.

    Where I am coming from it the defense of the U.S. Constitution, which protects everyone, and which is supposed to do so equally, without regard to things like social standing.

  22. Not all "evictions" result in evictions. A landlord looking to bypass rent control can file a false claim. When the tenant files a response, they are required to come for a settlement hearing. At that point, the landlord can make an offer that is too good to pass up. The case is withdrawn, and the tenant may not move out for months, even getting free rent during that period. The landlord gets to jack up the rent, and the tenant will likely not find a place that is as affordable.

  23. ROTFL! I dare say, I am probably old enough to be your mother. And nope, not making assumptions. You showed total ignorance, and then resorted to a truly lame insult.

  24. No, you have no sympathy for people who are selling bikes that are not stolen. You assume all the bikes are stolen. Guilty or innocent, you don't care. As I said, you have no proof, so you paint with a broad brush.

  25. And, aiui, the law would let them 'cling' to 5 bikes. Beyond that, we're talking about criminality or mental illness. Where is it in the best interest of the citizens of SF – or those involved – to allow that to continue IN A PUBLIC SPACE and ultimately ON THE PUBLIC DIME?!?

    Thanx for the critique of my post. But, frankly, I can't imagine where you're coming from. These discussions take on their own emotional baggage; I assume that is what you're reacting to here.

    Did you even notice how some people can be so unhelpful its astounding and derpessing? And other people can be so over-helpful its … unhelpful and counterproductive? I see this a lot in SF these days. An appropriate response is … rare.

  26. No-fault evictions are not significant as a percent of total units. However, they are higher in areas with increasing property values. There are hardly any no-fault evictions in the Bayview. In those higher value areas, there are fewer poor to begin with. But even the non-poor may not be able to find what they want for what they can afford. It may be true the some will leave the Bay Area to find a suitable or desirable environment.

    Evictions account for only 1% of the reasons people move. As prices rise some are willing to pay more as the area become more desirable. Or they are willing to accept less space. But most choose to move. They can get more for their money by leaving. Or, if they move to a less desirable area, they become the gentrifiers.

    All of my living relatives most of my childhood friends moved out of the City. For some, price was a factor. But they got a better quality of life, a higher standard of living, by leaving. Very often people who can afford a home in the City move for a bigger better home, better schools, better weather, and less crime.

  27. Nice attempt to tap dance around the issue. Just shows that you really have nothing to back up your position. Amusing, but of no real value.

  28. So, bottom line, you have no proof. Just a unsubstantiated claim. You are the perfect illustration of the issue. You are completely incapable of seeing anything other than what you want to see, For you, it is guilty, period. No possibility you might be wrong.

  29. Of course, so sorry. A homeless man with parts from five different bikes is merely doing a little day trading. You know, a little "alternative economic venue" stuff.

  30. Oh, sorry for the misunderstanding, @geek__girl . Why, you can even buy a bike for just under a hundred dollars at KMart (although most of their bikes are at the $250 level). And the Burning Man example is right on. The fact that people left their bikes at the Burning Man festival explains perfectly why people abandon their bikes all over the city streets. Your logic is, as usual, on its own level.

  31. Oh, absolutely @Geek__Girl. Outside of San Francisco other places certainly provide sufficient shelter and there are no people on the street. Absolutely. My apologies if you think that I implied otherwise. Only in San Francisco are people living on the streets, and it is because of Ed Lee.

  32. It is not that simple. If a landlord is greedy enough, illegal evictions can be filed. The courts put a lot of pressure on both sides to settle, so the landlord may make an absurd offer to settle. The tenant who takes it may find it was a mistake. Right now, unless one leaves San Francisco, and pretty much the Bay Area, one is not going to find cheaper rent. In areas that are being gentrified, the poor are pushed out. That is the whole idea. Gentrification is not improving the area for those who already live there. It is about buying places on the cheap, and then either tearing them down, or making major improvements and turning a profit. The poor are just in the way.

  33. It is the current one. And it is more than just a law, it is a simple principle. You cannot punish people for something that is a necessity. If you don't provide a reasonable alternative, you cannot bother people for sleeping on the streets.

  34. Sorry, but the City cannot legally do that. Since you have obviously forgotten, this is the United States, and such an approach would be contrary to the Constitution.

  35. I agree as rent goes up some can't afford to stay. But they often are willing to pay more to stay longer in areas being improved. People move for several reasons. Around 1% move because they are evicted or foreclosed on. 8% move for cheaper rent. But I would guess that many who move for divorce may not be able to afford to stay as individuals. Poor people in areas being gentrified move out less, slower to move out, than poor people in areas not being gentrified. They are willing to pay more of their income for rent in a nicer area, and gentrification brings service jobs that helps them stay longer.

  36. In order for that to work The City would need to effectively "close the border". The homeless population increases because of homeless being bussed here one way from other states.

  37. Wow, that is yet another lame straw man argument. Obviously, if someone has expensive equipment, the likelihood that it was stolen increases. Do you even have the knowledge to tell a cheap part from an expensive one? Not, of course, that you actually care. Homeless person? You see a criminal. Bike part? Must be off of a $5000 bike. You do realize that there are really cheap bikes out there? Look at the number of bikes abandoned at Burning Man… As to your actual comments? You have a rather lame imagination, since no one has suggested anything like that.

  38. I said proof, not an ignorant comment that is not remotely evidence. Yes, some camps have a lot of parts. That does not prove they are stolen. Yes, some possibly are. Perhaps even probably. But there is the rub, not all are. You make an ignorant assumption, and then you dig a deeper hole.

  39. If you own, it might be a bit harder to displace you, but not impossible. And most ARE forced out. Rents are jacked up, and buildings are torn down. Kind of hard to stay. Oh, and the ones that can't be sold seem to spontaneously corrupt.

  40. Other places have sufficient shelter. Newsom closed some here, and made it difficult for people to get into the ones that remain. Lee has worked to keep the supply down as people are being displaced from what used to be relatively affordable housing.

  41. As a matter fact, there is, though Ed would never do that. It is owned by one of his major supporters. I have no problem with a Navigation Center next door.

  42. Well look, @Geek__Girl:disqus makes perfect sense as usual.

    If you suddenly found yourself homeless, wouldn't your first act be to go to second stores and flea markets and buy used bicycle parts? Of course it would. And then you would focus on collecting bicycle parts and be grateful when people approached you to donate their brand new, expensive equipment.

    How long could you expect to survive in a tent if you didn't have a bicycle frame or two with you?

  43. Yes! It is all Ed Lee!!!!

    There is a good reason why San Francisco and only San Francisco has a homeless problem that does not exist anywhere else. Has to be Ed Lee.

    @Geek__Girl makes perfect sense!

  44. Maybe not, but I would probably stay as long as I could. In general areas are either going up or down. If the neighborhood went downhill I would not want to stay.

    Most people are not "forced out" by gentrification. 90% choose to move for many other reasons.

  45. The only way to have any security is to own. If you rent, you don't. I learned that the hard way many decades ago.

    Where there is gentrification the turnover is slower. People are willing to pay more to stay in a better neighborhood. But at some point they may need to leave. That's life.

    What is the opposite of gentrification? Decay? It that happened I would not longer want to live there even if able.

  46. Prove it. To be specific, prove that ALL bikes possessed by the homeless are stolen. You are making an allegation, and hiding behind, "Hate to state the obvious." Back it up with REAL evidence, or admit you are simply making a prejudiced statement.

  47. Yes. There's a bldg next door to Geek-Girl which could be taken with eminent domain and turned into a Nav Ctr. Ed Lee is just being selfish.

  48. The City should be providing enough shelter space that they are not needed, but then Ed Lee would lose his favorite political football.

  49. Wow! That is one of the lamest bits of drivel I have ever seen. People who are homeless are generally stripped of their belongings. When they do have something, they tend to cling to it. Something that to you is some trivial item, that you have no real attachment to, is to them, a treasure, because in many cases, it may be all they have.

  50. So, you are assuming that all homeless people with bikes, or parts, are thieves? Based on what? A hunch? Or, to be quite frank, ignorant bigotry? This is a law of very questionable legality, as it presumes guilt and requires the person to prove their innocence. It also pretty much avoids due process. Of course, I am sure you are tickled pink that Ed Lee's Gestapo, whoops, I mean DPW, will be enforcing it.

  51. Agreed. No one is coming to our streets for a free tent, it's a necessary life saving device, not a swaddle.

    I think the biggest problem with the way we discuss the homeless is the huge brush we all paint them with, either good or bad. They're either all vagabond criminals or they're all down on their luck locals, depending on who you ask. We talk about the "homeless problem" as if the homeless are comprised of just one group, victims to just one particular phenomena. There are tons of different reasons why these people are on the streets and they should be dealt with accordingly. If someone is living in a tent because they are riddled by addiction, mental illness, disability, extreme financial hardship, what have you, then they need help and don't deserve to be cast aside with the actual criminals.

    That said, there ARE criminals on the streets. The chop shop people are one of said criminals. The car vandals, selling wares stolen from cars are another. It's important to rid ourselves of the true criminals for a ton of obvious reasons, but most importantly so that they do not siphon relief from the truly needy homeless. They also give the actual victims on the street a terrible reputation, as from afar the normal passerby cannot tell the difference. Unfortunately, judging by how the media appears to work, you have to choose whether or not you are pro- or anti- homeless and dig your heels in to the point of absurdity otherwise you risk losing your readership. A shame.

  52. Tim's not the only one who has tried the "But I have 3 bikes and parts in my garage" thing.

    It makes no sense.

    Maybe you still have parts from your kid's bike that broke 5 years ago because you have space in the garage and you don't trip over them every day.

    But lets say that you wound up living on the street. Are you trying to say that you would be sure to carry around your old bike parts wherever you went?

  53. I don't support no tents. People have died from cold weather on the streets of San Francisco and yes, it is OUR responsibility to help those who cannot help themselves. Saying there may bed a bed available in Hunter's Point with no bathrooms and no access to public transportation isn't 'helping.'

  54. Absolutely. If we can't figure out how to control the organized greed of big business then we ought to stop trying to prevent petty crimes like bike stealing, car break ins and the like.

  55. Thank you. Along with some enforcement of the No Tents on pubic property law passed by the voter.

    We don't really need any new laws. I suspect we need new law enforcers and administrators.

    What we probably need is a Grand Jury to look into the whole of the SFPD – along with the DA, PD, and the courts.

  56. Yes, I think the execs at Wells Fargo, Experian, and the Red Cross ought to pay the price.

    I'm just not all into letting the petty criminals continue to be … petty and criminal.

  57. Innocent until proven guilty, but yes, I support some form of investigation or surveillance regarding bikes and bike parts.

  58. "The bike parts are all stolen!"
    "No, they're all donated or found!"

    Two completely baseless and non-factual viewpoints born out of nothing more than opinion of whether the homeless are victims or criminals.

    *Some* of the tents with dozens, not just five, but dozens, of partial bikes appear extremely suspicious and should be looked into further. There's good reason to believe that bike thefts and the whole chop-shop cycle is organized and criminal, at least to some extent. I can't believe the polar extremes people are taking on this issue, or why further legislation is even required. All it would take is just a slight scratching of the surface of a suspicious tent to determine if there's foul play or just a few homeless people innocently trying to make ends meet by recycling.

  59. It's so easy for cowards to go after the most vulnerable people while looking the other way when the powerful rob us of our security, our health, our money, our lives. I've lost more than one bike to theft but that is nothing compared to what I stand to lose — and what many have already lost — thanks to corporate greed and unlawful acts that go unchecked.

  60. And I walked by an tent encampment yesterday and there wasn't one bicycle nor bicycle part visible. But I'm sure you'll respond that they could be hiding them in the massively spacious tents.

  61. I am afraid there will be gentrification and replacement whether or not more housing is built. And what's wrong with gentrification? It has improved my neighborhood.

  62. There is also a difference in storing your stuff on private versus public property. Or doing business on the sidewalk.

  63. Really? People are just "abandoning" all of this expensive biking equipment on the streets?

    Wow. I had no idea. I see some really nice stuff in the tent camps. DIsc brakes even.

    Thanks for the info!!!!!

  64. OK, since 700 bike thefts magically translates to 4,000 bikes being stolen, it must be a handful of homeless people stealing the bikes. Or something.

  65. Talk about a stretch. The majority of those bike parts are abandoned? You really pulled that out of thin air. There were 700 reported bike thefts last year, which translates to nearly 4,000 actual bikes being stolen. But yeah, the piles of bikes in the encampments were abandoned or donated. Mmmkay. Good for Sheehy for taking on this issue.

  66. The bikes are not recycled. They are stolen. Hate to have to state the obvious. Tim thinks crime is a valid "alternative economic venue."
    "The reality is that recycling bike parts is one of the few alternative economic venues for impoverished people to make a living."

  67. "…especially with the likelihood they are stolen goods."

    Well, that's a stretch. I used to see abandoned 'partial' bikes locked to signposts all over the city. Now I don't. Could it be that the majority of those bike parts in the homeless area are abandoned?

    Regardless, unless we know they are stolen, we shouldn't be making assumptions.

  68. Ok, Tim – you say you have a lot of unstolen bicycles and parts at your house. So have I. Aside from having a house (and basement or garage to stuff – I mean – store them in), you have been there, how long? 10y? 15y? more?

    Now the tent camps and box city residents may have been in the City a while (and maybe not). But its highly unlikely that what they have accumulated in several weeks or months is the same as what took you (or many of us) years or decades to acquire. Simply for lack of storage space. There is no percentage in encouraging pack-rat-ism; which is just another din on the taxpayers.

    Personally, I go by these camps every day (and occasionally have one or more on my block), and the amt of STUFF they have is insane. There is no good reason they could use, or should have, that many bikes – especially with the likelihood they are stolen goods. And with the fact that they will have to move all that stuff in a short period, limiting the amt of crap they possess is only a good thing – for them, and for the City as a whole.

Comments are closed.

Sponsored link

Top reads

A new dark-money group with GOP support seeks to raise crime fears

A misleading mailer attacking the record of DA Chesa Boudin hits the streets—but who paid for it?

Robots in the crash pad: The twisted takeover of the Red Victorian Hotel

How Haight Ashbury countercultural ideals were distorted by a tech "co-living" experiment, and a trans performance community was displaced.

Arts Forecast: Folsom MEGAHOOD Fair plays safely naughty, Litquake erupts in verbiage

Plus: Whiskies of the World, The Bad Plus, Public Works' 10-Year, "Bacchae Before," more upcoming events.

More by this author

A new dark-money group with GOP support seeks to raise crime fears

A misleading mailer attacking the record of DA Chesa Boudin hits the streets—but who paid for it?

While people sit in jail cells, SF courts delay criminal trials

Judges hear civil cases while violating the law and delaying the right to a speedy trial for criminal defendants, public defender says.

A car-free JFK Drive in Golden Gate Park is finally close to reality

But there are some complicated equity issues that will require a lot more discussion.
Sponsored link

You might also likeRELATED