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Voters' guide to S.F. mayoral candidates

Josh Wilson, Newsdesk.org — Nov 7 2011 - 2:02pm

The 2011 Nonpartisan Voter Guide  is a succinct, printable listing of S.F. mayoral candidate positions and quotes on more than two-dozen key policy issues and ballot initiatives, including pensions, taxes, transportation and homelessness. The research and survey were conducted by University of California’s Hastings College of the Law and the San Francisco Public Press. The voter guide was produced by Newsdesk.org.

Get drivers out of their cars and onto transit: mayoral candidate Leland Yee on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 4 2011 - 12:45pm
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 8

State Senator Leland Yee is running for San Francisco mayor and said his main goal for Muni is to get drivers out of cars and onto buses and trains. He wants to add 100,00 new riders by 2020. Yee said in order to do this, Muni needs to update its technology for with more real-time data and focus on how the transit agency is spending its budget. He said the agency should be focused on fixing broken Muni vehicles.

City must hit the reset button on transit: mayoral candidate Phil Ting on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 3 2011 - 12:22pm
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 7

Assessor-Recorder and San Francisco mayoral candidate Phil Ting wants Muni riders to join him in “resetting” Muni. He is behind the online community known as Reset SF, where residents get a chance to share their ideas with Ting on improving city government transparency. One of the central topics of Reset SF is Muni and how to improve service and reliability.

Change starts at neighborhood corner store

Marta Franco, Mission Local — Nov 3 2011 - 11:15am

Cookies, sandwiches, salads: Every afternoon, neighbors and visitors stop at Tony’s Market at 24th and Hampshire to buy  food or pick up lunch at Pal’s Takeaway, inside the store. Only a few years ago, Kassa Mehari, the store’s owner, sold mostly liquor. But three years ago, as the street was developing, Mehari decided it was time for the store to change. 

Activists say ditch banks, go to credit unions on Nov. 5

Niema Jordan, Oakland Local — Nov 2 2011 - 2:20pm

Did you know that this Saturday, Nov. 5, is Bank Transfer Day? If you've seen the Facebook event, which has more that 58,000 RSVPs, or the Twitter page, then you've seen the red, white and blue mask, and have probably read the following: "Together we can ensure that these banking institutions will ALWAYS remember the 5th of November!! If the 99% removes our funds from the major banking institutions to non-profit credit unions on or by this date, we will send a clear message to the 1% that conscious consumers won't support companies with unethical business practices."

Central Subway costs have gotten out of control: mayoral candidate Dennis Herrera on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 2 2011 - 10:38am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 6

One of the leading voices against the Central Subway project has been City Attorney and San Francisco mayoral candidate Dennis Herrera. Herrera said that he supported the project at the initial cost of $650 million, but now cost projections have reached $1.6 billion.

Giving transit workers a boost will help improve the system: mayoral candidate Bevan Dufty on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 1 2011 - 11:39am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 5

Former supervisor and San Francisco mayoral candidate Bevan Dufty is standing up for the Muni operators. Dufty said he knows what Muni drivers go through each and every day and he wants to help them if he comes mayor. His plan is to offer life coaches to Muni operators and other city employees working on the front lines.

Ranked-choice voting explained

Matthew Green, KQED News — Oct 31 2011 - 2:45pm

In November, San Franciscans choose their next mayor through an electoral process called ranked-choice voting. Also known as "instant runoff voting," voters will pick three candidates (instead of one), and rank them in order of preference, eliminating the need for a separate runoff election. It’s the first time San Francisco will use this system to decide a competitive mayor’s race, and many are waiting to see how well it all works out.

Boost the vehicle license fee to help fund S.F. public transit: mayoral candidate David Chiu on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Oct 31 2011 - 11:55am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 4

San Francisco mayoral candidate David Chiu said that if he becomes mayor, he will work to get the state to boost the vehicle license fee in order to help cash-strapped Muni. In 2003, when Arnold Schwarzenegger became governor, the first thing he did was slash the vehicle license fee. Chui, who does not own a car and uses a bike and Muni to get around town, won one of three endorsements handed out by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.

Q&A: Candidates for San Francisco district attorney

Rina Palta, KALW News and SF Public Press — Oct 28 2011 - 2:07pm

Fifth and final interview is with Vu Trinh

One of the more important and most overlooked races in San Francisco is the campaign to be the city’s next district attorney. When Kamala Harris left the post for state office last year, outgoing Mayor Gavin Newsom appointed then-Police Chief George Gascon to take her place. Now, Gascon is running for a full four-year term, but faces stiff competition from four other candidates. Previously, we spoke with Bill Fazio, David Onek, Sharmin Bock and George Gascon. Today, in our final interview, we speak with Vu Trinh, a longtime public defender and current member of the Board of Legal Specialization.

Make S.F.'s transit system 'magnificent' to lure drivers from their cars: mayoral candidate Terry Baum on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Oct 28 2011 - 12:38pm
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 3

San Francisco mayoral candidate Terry Baum said that if she becomes mayor, she would make Muni “magnificent.” She said wants to change the mentality of people who drive cars to give public transportation a chance. Her plan is to transform the Muni subway stations into a museum with mosaics and murals. She said Muni has to be fun and a place where people want to be at. She wants Muni to be the focus of positive energy for riders.

Construction begins on largest restoration in San Pablo Bay refuge

Juliet Grable, Bay Nature — Oct 27 2011 - 7:11pm

At first glance, Cullinan Ranch isn't much to look at. Bound by Dutchman Slough to the north and Highway 37 to the south, the Solano County property consists of 1,500 acres of low-lying fields, dotted with clumps of cattails and coyote brush. Only some earth-moving equipment parked on the site hints that this former farmland is about to become the largest restored marsh in the San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

S.F. needs to improve transit service outside downtown: mayoral candidate John Avalos on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Oct 27 2011 - 6:12pm
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 2

San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos, who is seeking the mayor’s job, says Muni has an infrastructure problem within the transit system. He has said that  Muni is too centered in the downtown area. He wants all residents in the city to have better access to Muni and wants to stop the practice of switchbacks, where Muni buses or trains change direction during mid-route.

Occupy Oakland protesters push for general strike

Alima Catellacci and Alejandra Cuéllar, SF Public Press — Oct 27 2011 - 2:30pm
The day after a tumultuous confrontation between police and the protesters of the Occupy Oakland movement, more than 2,000 people gathered Wednesday at the civic center to vent their outrage at the heavy-handed eviction tactics, which included launching teargas into the crowd. Thousands of protesters convened in the early evening in an amphitheater in what they were calling Oscar Grant Plaza — officially Frank Ogawa plaza at City Hall, renamed after the victim of a police shooting on BART last year — to discuss the events of the previous 48 hours.

Q&A: Candidates for San Francisco district attorney

Rina Palta, KALW News and SF Public Press — Oct 27 2011 - 12:00pm

Fourth interview is with George Gascon

One of the more important and most overlooked races in San Francisco is the campaign to be the city’s next district attorney. When Kamala Harris left the post for state office last year, outgoing Mayor Gavin Newsom appointed then-Police Chief George Gascon to take her place. Now, Gascon is running for a full four-year term, but faces stiff competition from four other candidates. Previously, we spoke with Bill Fazio, David Onek, and Sharmin Bock. Today, we sit down with Gascon.

Is this legal? Wheat-pasting, wild posting & flyers

Bridget Huber, Mission Local — Oct 26 2011 - 5:52pm

It happens overnight: A plywood construction barrier goes up and is promptly plastered with ads that turn half a block into a billboard for the latest romantic comedy or pop album. There’s no question that wheat-pasted ads are common in the Mission, but are they legal?

 

S.F. should stop syphoning funds from transit agency: mayoral candidate Adachi on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Oct 26 2011 - 3:08pm
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 1

Public Defender Jeff Adachi, a candidate for mayor of San Francisco, said Muni must live up to its voter-mandated on-time performance rate of 85 percent. How does he plan to do that if elected? One of his ideas is to stop city departments from taking resources from the transit agency, known as work orders. Work orders are charges from city departments to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency. Last year SF 311 charged the agency for each customer assistance call related to Muni, which resulted in a $6.3 million bill.

Q&A: Candidates for San Francisco district attorney

Jason Winshell, Hank Drew and Rina Palta, SF Public Press and KALW News — Oct 26 2011 - 12:17pm

Third interview is with Sharmin Bock

One of the more important and most overlooked races in San Francisco is the campaign to be the city’s next district attorney. When Kamala Harris left the post for state office last year, outgoing Mayor Gavin Newsom appointed then-Police Chief George Gascon to take her place. Now, Gascon is running for a full four-year term, but faces stiff competition from four other candidates. Previously, we spoke with Bill Fazio and David Onek. Today, we feature Sharmin Bock, a San Francisco native and longtime prosecutor in Alameda County, known especially for her work on child sex trafficking. Bock sat down with Jason Winshell and Hank Drew from the San Francisco Public Press.  

Q&A: Candidates for San Francisco district attorney

Rina Palta, KALW News and SF Public Press — Oct 25 2011 - 12:01pm

Second interview is with David Onek

One of the more important and most overlooked races in San Francisco is the campaign to be the city’s next district attorney. When Kamala Harris left the post for state office last year, outgoing Mayor Gavin Newsom appointed then-Police Chief George Gascon to take her place. Now, Gascon is running for a full four-year term, but faces stiff competition from four other candidates. Yesterday, we spoke with Bill Fazio. Today, we turn to David Onek, a longtime criminal justice reformer and founding director of the Center for Criminal Justice at U.C. Berkeley’s School of Law.

Researchers use S.F. mayoral candidates’ positions to rethink their places on ideological spectrum

Dhyana Levey, SF Public Press — Oct 24 2011 - 3:41pm

Political scientists are trying to measure the ideology of candidates for mayor of San Francisco in an effort to give voters a better guide as to who most closely shares their views. San Francisco’s crowded field of 16 candidates and a ranked-choice voting system, which some find baffling, seemed to be the ideal testing ground for a project that measures mayoral hopefuls positions by surveying them on past actions at the Board of Supervisors and on current policy debates. Voters aren’t always as well informed as they can be for city elections, which tend to attract less attention than national races and also lack the party labels that help distinguish each candidate, said Christopher S. Elmendorf, a professor of law at the University of California, Davis, and a visiting professor at U.C. Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco.