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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Coit Tower Partier Joins Fundraising Party

Posted By on Tue, May 29, 2012 at 1:12 PM

click to enlarge Where's the party?
  • Where's the party?

On the cusp of voters' decision on how to spend the funds generated by aging landmark Coit Tower, the city announced it has unearthed $1.7 million with which to maintain its rough-around-the-edges moneymaker.

Fair enough -- tourists shocked at the filth and degradation of city amenities could do with one fewer example.

Money continues to trickle in, however, with regards to Proposition B, the ballot measure that would prioritize Coit Tower money for tower upkeep -- and restrict the use of the landmark for private events. SF Weekly wrote earlier about one such event, a dinner party held by right-leaning politico Thomas Coates in exchange for a $20,000 donation to the nonprofit Parks Alliance.

The Parks Alliance has since led the effort against Prop. B -- and, campaign finance records reveal, it received a sizable donation from one of the attendees of the Coates Coit Tower soirée.

Per a filing made last week, the Parks Alliance scored $15,000 from Curtis Gardner, one of the dozen guests at the 2011 Coit Tower event.

Since the Parks Alliance is not a ballot measure committee, it's difficult to discern just how much money has been spent in the battle against Prop. B. But, per its most recent filing, it's dropped about $20,000 on "media buying for [a] television advertisement" and $3,600 on consulting fees. On April 30, it received a $10,000 donation from prominent "angel investor" Ron Conway to fund the anti-Prop. B effort.

"Protect Coit Tower," the committee that created and is pushing Prop. B, has spent some $26,424 to date, according to its campaign filings. Its funding has not come in $15,000 increments, however. The most generous donor listed in its current report gave one-tenth that amount.

It remains to be seen how all of this money will affect the vote -- and, it warrants mentioning, a good chunk of the people who'll bother casting a ballot in the June 5 election might already have done so. Either way, the expenditure-per-word ratio for Prop. B could establish a local record. The tens of thousands of dollars spent isn't much. But, then, neither is the proposition's word count: 75.

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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.


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