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Monday, April 19, 2010

Your Rundown on the Week in S.F. Government

Posted By on Mon, Apr 19, 2010 at 9:13 AM

click to enlarge A Tea Party slogan unknown in San Franciso government
  • A Tea Party slogan unknown in San Franciso government
Should be a fun week -- the Board of Supervisors is weighing in on the fiasco involving narcotics analysis at the San Francisco Police Department crime lab, the Police Commission is trying to reform its process for disciplining wayward officers, and we can look forward to the latest round in the pissing contest between Supervisor Chris Daly and the Lennar Corporation. Here's the rundown:


10 a.m.: The Board of Supervisors' Public Safety Committee will hold a hearing on problems at the scandal-ridden police crime lab, which has become more of a public-relations nightmare for the police department and district attorney's office by the day. Last week, documents released by the D.A. raised questions about how early police officers and prosecutors knew about problems at the lab, particularly those involving technician Deborah Madden, who has been accused of stealing drugs for personal use. Expect some indignation from the hearing's co-sponsors: Ross Mirkarimi, who hasn't been shy about taking shots at D.A. Kamala Harris in the past, and David Chiu, who is said to be interested in her seat.

1 p.m.: Hungry in Noe Valley? The supes' Land Use and Economic Development Committee will consider changing planning regulations to allow more restaurants along 24th Street in the Noe Valley Neighborhood Commercial District. The current rules prohibit new eateries and bars out of concern about unruly patrons disturbing genteel Noe's peace and quiet; apparently, the district's peace-and-quiet-loving residents now want a few more culinary options close to home.

2 p.m.: Expect some fireworks in the supervisors' chambers at the full board meeting this week, as a few contentious items come up for consideration. First is Supervisor Chris Daly's resolution demanding a written apology from developer Lennar Corporation for its allegedly "dangerous" decision to send an armed security guard to a public-information meeting. (Knowing how meetings on Lennar's plans for the southeast city tend to go, we'd be more inclined to bring a hip flask.)

Once officials and activists have limbered up on the Lennar item, there's more to come. The supervisors will be hearing an appeal of the environmental certification for a controversial luxury-condo project at 555 Washington St., by the Transamerica Pyramid. The city's anti-development factions have taken a strong stand against this project, and the developer has said it will back out of the deal if the board doesn't shoot down the appeal.

The board will also vote on whether to declare April 24th as Armenian Genocide Commemoration Day. Recognition of the well-documented Turkish genocide of Armenians in the early 20th Century has proven extraordinarily contentious at the federal level, where even the Obama Administration has opposed lawmakers' efforts to speak on the subject, out of concern for U.S. reliance on Turkey's good will in foreign affairs. In California, with its large population of Armenian immigrants, it's easier for politicians to take a stand -- all 11 of the supervisors are sponsoring the resolution.

6 p.m.: The San Francisco school board will hold a special meeting to discuss city schools that were placed on a California Department of Education list of the worst-performing schools in the state. 

5:30 p.m.: The Police Commission will hold a hearing on how to reform the way its members handle the disciplining of police officers. Though overseeing such cases is a core function of the commission, SF Weekly columnist Matt Smith reported last week that the panel was seriously falling down on the job -- particularly former commissioner and current supervisor David Campos, who did not personally preside over a single one of the dozen discipline cases assigned to him during his time on the commission. 

1 p.m.: On the off chance that any tea-bagging anti-government activists remain in town after last week's demonstrations, they might want to head over to City Hall for Supervisor Carmen Chu's hearing before the Government Audit and Oversight Committee on the overall debt level of San Francisco. Given the city's ongoing budget crisis and the major capital projects we now have underway -- including the $4.4 billion revamping of the Hetch Hetchy water system -- we expect some scary numbers.

Photo   |   Fibonacci Blue

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Peter Jamison


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