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Politics

Occupy SF demonstrators take over empty building

KQED News — Apr 2 2012 - 1:45pm

A group of Occupy SF demonstrators took over a vacant  building owned by the Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco at 888 Turk St. in San Francisco on Sunday after a rally and march in Union Square. Police began making arrests on Monday afternoon. KQED News is following the story via Storify.

Supervisors tangle over whether to kill or change ranked-choice elections this year

T.J. Johnston, SF Public Press — Mar 21 2012 - 8:41am

This story appears in the Spring 2012 print edition of the San Francisco Public Press.

Opponents of the ranked-choice voting instant runoff system say he relatively novel approach is still confusing to voters, while foes of the traditional system that often results in a second runoff election is a waste of money. Dueling measure on how San Franciscans elect their top office holders by Supervisors David Campos and Mark Farrell could end up on the November ballot.

Infamous Berkeley human trafficking case’s long shadow: KALW News interviews reporter Viji Sundaram

Michael Stoll, SF Public Press — Mar 18 2012 - 5:40pm

The story of Lakireddy Balireddy made international headlines in the early 2000s, but what happened in the decade since then was even more important, said reporter Viji Sundaram of New America Media and part of a team project on human trafficking in the Spring 2012 print edition of the San Francisco Public Press.

Last week Sundaram sat down with KALW News host Holly Kernan to discuss her reporting on the history of efforts to battle human trafficking in the Bay Area and California.

City's health plan risks reverting to safety net for poor

Angela Hart, SF Public Press — Mar 15 2012 - 8:26am

Local, state officials must develop new models for care by 2014

This story appeared in the Spring 2012 print edition of the San Francisco Public Press.

San Francisco’s experiment in universal health care, which grew over the last five years to cover an estimated 85 percent of the city’s uninsured, may need to partly return to its origin as a network of safety net clinics and hospitals for the poor as national reforms syphon off middle-class patients. Healthy San Francisco provides medical services to more than 50,000 city residents. But the program could take a financial blow within the next two years as cities and counties adapt to national health reform.

Same-sex marriage takes the day as court calls Prop. 8 unconstitutional

Kristine Magnuson, SF Public Press — Feb 7 2012 - 11:20pm
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Same-sex marriage proponents celebrated an important victory Tuesday in San Francisco following the 9th Circuit Court’s ruling that Proposition 8 was unconstitutional. Backers of Proposition 8 were expected to appeal, either by asking for a review by a full panelof the court or by appealing directly to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Ordinance would put restrictions on Castro District plazas

T.J. Johnston, SF Public Press — Jan 26 2012 - 1:13pm

A proposal to regulate two popular Castro District hangouts by restricting chairs and shopping carts is a step closer to becoming city law. The Board of Supervisors will decide Tuesday on an ordinance, which passed the Land Use Committee this week, that would ban nighttime sitting, sleeping, vending, smoking and even pushing a shopping cart in Harvey Milk and Jane Warner Plazas.

Advocates launch campaign to get anti-trafficking bill on state ballot

Elena Shore, New America Media — Jan 12 2012 - 11:43am
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A campaign to get a new measure on the November ballot that would increase penalties against human traffickers in California launched Wednesday in San Francisco. The campaign, announced on National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, requires 800,000 signatures to make it into the state ballot. The California Against Sexual Exploitation (CASE) Act would increase prison terms and fines for human traffickers (up to $1.5 million, which would go to fund victim services), remove barriers to prosecute child sex traffickers, require convicted sex traffickers to register as sex offenders and disclose their Internet accounts, mandate training for law enforcement officers, and prohibit the use of the sexual history of trafficked victims in court.

Muni chief optimistic despite projected budget shortfall

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 14 2011 - 5:40pm

Muni is projecting close to an $80 million budget deficit by 2013-2014. The agency released its preliminary budget report Monday. Despite the shortfall, Muni wants to change the minds of riders and drivers who are skeptical that the service can be reliable and on time. The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, which oversees Muni, has drafted goals for the next six years that Muni chief Ed Reiskin calls  “ambitious.”

Effort to recall Oakland mayor faces uphill battle

Jennifer Inez Ward, Oakland Local — Nov 9 2011 - 11:36am

Mayor Jean Quan is facing the toughest fight in her tenure as CEO of Oakland – a recall effort. But whether the recall movement will gain traction and usher Quan out of office is far from clear. Although the recall effort has received extensive media coverage, and there were plenty of folks marching with "Recall Quan" signs at the city's hugely popular general strike Nov. 2,  the quest to replace the mayor will be a long process that could carry on well into mid-2012.

Election day threat to ranked-choice voting in San Francisco

T.J. Johnston, SF Public Press — Nov 8 2011 - 5:43pm

On the same day that San Francisco voters were deciding who would be the next mayor, the method used to elect that person was under attack. At a Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Supervisor Mark Farrell introduced a charter amendment for the June 2012 ballot that would eliminate ranked-choice voting as a way of elevating candidates to city offices."Ranked-choice voting is an experiment whose unintended consequences continue to pile up election after election,” Farrell said.

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