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Tuesday, January 31, 2023

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News + Politics

The future of the Castro Theater, and its role in the LGBTQ community, now at City Hall

Historic Preservation Commission will consider whether the legendary venue can become a concert nightclub.

Watching the cops, and recording them …

... Plus supes take on the future of Laguna Honda. That's The Agenda for Jan. 29-Feb 5.

Why it makes sense for stakeholders to sue the city for failing its affordable housing goals

The Housing Element numbers are really funky and don't make sense—and under Breed's Administration, there may be no other option.

The future of the Castro Theater, and its role in the LGBTQ community, now at City Hall

Historic Preservation Commission will consider whether the legendary venue can become a concert nightclub.

Watching the cops, and recording them …

... Plus supes take on the future of Laguna Honda. That's The Agenda for Jan. 29-Feb 5.

Why it makes sense for stakeholders to sue the city for failing its affordable housing goals

The Housing Element numbers are really funky and don't make sense—and under Breed's Administration, there may be no other option.

New board committees show little dramatic change—and some potential

Conservatives take over one panel, but progressives still control budget and land use—and a new committee on homelessness could take on a big role.

Planning Department has ambitious housing goals; Mayor’s Office stands in the way

Hearing shows huge disconnect between lofty goals and the ability of the city to implement them.

Supes to consider housing farce—and start on the mayor’s budget

Everybody knows the Housing Element won't work, but it's going to be approved anyway. Maybe at least someone will ask some questions.

SF could lead the way on public power for California

Lafco hearing sets the stage for a new effort to replace private utilities, in the city and statewide.

New study says market conditions, not city requirements, prevent housing construction

It's not affordable-housing policies or regulatory delays: Under current conditions, there is no way to meet the state's housing mandates.

Remembering Jeff Beck’s endless talent, through Stevie and Mingus

A thrift store find ushered me into the guitarist's world, which straddled, rock, jazz, blues, and funk

Breed blocks affordable housing project in District 5 for ‘petty politics’

Shuttered car wash could have been more than 100 affordable units, until the mayor went back on a deal with the supes.

As the rich party in Davos, a new study shows the importance of a global wealth tax

This needs to be on the agenda of political leaders at every level, from Congress to the SF Board of Supes.

Health Commission faces the ongoing crisis at Laguna Honda Hospital

And meanwhile, hundreds of unhoused seniors have serious medical issues that are getting entirely ignored.

What the new AI says about the Yimby movement and agenda

You can make it argue almost anything, and it's alarmingly cogent. Here's an example.

Booms, busts, PG&E and the bloated police budget

Every city agency has to face cuts—but not the cops? And when will the city move to seize PG&E's grid? That's The Agenda for Jan. 15-22

Sweeping in the rain

From SoMa to Wood Street Commons, the unhoused suffer as the brutal sweeps continue

Four takeaways from the historic Police Commission vote this week

A progressive commission is becoming the focus of broader criminal-justice reform issues.

Why is Breed resisting a life-saving program that faces no real legal or financial obstacles?

Safe consumption sites work in New York, stunning testimony at a hearing shows. Yet SF is putting on the brakes.

The story behind the garden-hose assault outside a North Beach gallery

Sup. Peskin's office has been working for years to get help for this homeless person—and city agencies have completely failed them.

Police Commission considers dramatic changes in racist traffic stops (with Breed opposed)

If a slim 4-3 majority holds, SF could take the national lead in addressing pattern of cops stopping and hassling Black and Brown motorists.

San Francisco continues homeless sweeps, during storm, defying a federal court order

New legal filing shows how cops continue to roust the unhoused even when the city can't offer any safe and secure shelter.

Surprise! Aaron Peskin is the new Board of Supes president

It took 17 votes and a progressive split before Peskin, who hadn't been a candidate, entered the race and won.

All about most people: Illuminating the history of the California labor movement

'From Mission to Microchip' author Fred B. Glass talks about how his City College course makes the long struggle relevant today

The next supes president, the future of safe-consumption sites, PG&E’s failure …

... and what the School Board leadership debate is really about. That's The Agenda for Jan. 9-16

Voting for the future direction of the California Democratic Party

Competing slates vie for roles as party delegates; ballots are in the mail and the in-person elections are this weekend.

After death, returning your body to the Earth

Human composting is cheaper and more environmentally sound than traditional burials or cremation.

SF tried to further damage cab drivers who are already suffering

SFMTA wants to take away cab permits from people who won them just Uber and Lyft destroy the industry—but Board of Appeals pushes back

SF plans for the next storm—but what about the one after that?

Breed blames forecasters—and city offers only 170 new shelter beds for thousands of unhoused people.

What if floods are part of the new normal in San Francisco?

We all worry about drought, but floods are also a result of climate change. And SF is nowhere near ready for that.

Politics, 2023: The budget crisis, housing, the mayor’s race, criminal justice ….

... and will this be the year that the Yimby narrative finally falls apart? Our projections.

Is SF ready for climate change? A flooded city seemed unprepared

Why did city officials wait until the intersections were impassible to put out warnings and close streets?

Is gentrification an environmental impact?

Court ruling says yes—and this could change development law in California.

Some New Year’s resolutions for SF politics

I'm always happy to take the time as 2023 dawns to tell everyone else what to do—and let's start with seizing PG&E's power grid.

Our top stories of 2022

Protests, recalls, monkeypox, garlic noodles, drag queens, rappers, Raver Girl: Essential coverage of a wild year

It’s going to be a difficult 2023 for Mayor London Breed

A looming urban crisis will call for visionary leadership and policies, which are in short supply in this administration.

Judge’s order barring sweeps should serve as a wake-up call for SF

Instead of denials and resistance, Breed Administration should take immediate steps to provide alternatives for people living on the streets.

My sister and I live at the Oasis Family Shelter. The owners should sell it to the city — not close it down.

It's making a huge difference in family lives. Losing this site would be a terrible failure.

Why are we still fighting over harm reduction in SF?

Feinstein resisted AIDS-era needle exchanges, now Breed rejects proven safe injection sites. We can't incarcerate our way out of crisis

Conservative YIMBYs just took over SF’s biggest lifestyle site. Its ex-editor tells us what that means

GrowSF controls The Bold Italic. Former head Matt Charnock, now of Underscore, dishes on the local media impact

What does Breed plan to do about the overdose crisis?

Plus: The future of Laguna Honda, racist police traffic stops, and the farce that is the city's Housing Element. That's The Agenda for Dec. 11-18

Why 469 Stevenson, the much-hyped project, will provide zero affordable housing for SoMa

Look at the numbers. It just doesn't add up. And there was a much better alternative.

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