Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Chamber of Commerce Jobs Report Slams John Avalos; Avalos Slams Chamber Report

Posted By on Thu, Jan 3, 2013 at 11:59 AM

Not that Jobs
  • Not that Jobs

Every year, the city's Chamber of Commerce puts out a list of which supervisors have been naughty and which have been nice. Its yearly "scorecard" tallies who voted for chamber-approved legislation and who voted against it. Except, in chamberspeak, supes siding with them "voted to support jobs and government efficiency" and those who acted contrary to their wishes "voted against jobs and government efficiency."

For anyone having trouble understanding the chamber's point, those "no" votes are graphically illustrated via the word "jobs" with a red line through it. Whatever the chamber's detractors may say about the organization -- and they do have a bit to say -- they'll never be able to accuse it of being insecure. To paraphrase Inspector Javert, the chamber is effectively stating "I am jobs. And jobs are not to be mocked!"

Chamber of Commerce scorecards, for the most part, are about as predictable as the Pepsi Challenge (which Pepsi won, incidentally).

Moderates score at or near 100 percent. And Progressives don't. This

year, Supervisor John Avalos came last, voting with the chamber on only

10 of the 16 issues it chose to spotlight. But he doesn't seem much

concerned. And for the lowest-scoring supe to register a 63 percent

tally is notable; in years past Chris Daly would clock in at as low as

13 percent.

"It's just a fluffy advocacy piece the chamber does," says Avalos. Added David Campos -- who voted with the chamber 69 percent of the time -- "I think if I had come up higher, that would have been a concern for some folks."

It warrants mentioning that the issues the chamber chose to highlight weren't all intuitive. A vote against Ross Mirkarimi's plastic bag ban expansion or the controversial 8 Washington development, or in favor of ranked-choice voting, was deemed "against jobs and government efficiency."

All in all, the board voted the chamber's way 81 percent of the time. The chamber assigned the board a B-minus, which gives the impression that our legislators are barely making the grade. But letter grades don't tell the real story; voting in lockstep with the chamber 81 percent of the time seems plenty high. Of 16 self-designated "important" issues, the board voted with the chamber on 13 of them.

For an organization that's all about jobs, the chamber doesn't do a very good job of explaining its overwhelming success.

  • Pin It

About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"