At the December board meeting, HANC directors supported Supervisor London Breed's amendment to the Planning Code to require international chain stores to be treated the same way local and national chains are treated on Haight Street.
Currently the “formula retail” ordinance requires a public hearing on the “necessity” for any national chain of 11 or more stores to open a local “branch” on Haight Street. However, international chains are exempt from such a requirement. Two such international chains, CeX (between Masonic and Ashbury street) and Happy Herbs ( at Masonic and Haight), each of which have more than 50 locations internationally, were allowed to open without a public hearing.
HANC argued in its letter to the Supervisor:
“Section 719 of the Planning Code recognizes the Haight Street Neighborhood Commercial District as a shopping area that 'provides convenience goods and services to local Haight-Ashbury residents' and establishes controls which seek to 'maintain a balanced mix and variety of neighborhood serving commercial uses and regulate …more intensive commercial uses….'”
The HANC Board proposes changing its Bylaws to reflect the closure of our Recycling Center and the addition of a Finance Committee. These changes will be voted on at the December General Membership meeting.
Proposed Bylaws Changes:
Delete: "Recycling Committee" from mention in Article 7 Section 1, and Section 8 in its entirety.
Add: Finance Committee to Section 8: "The Finance Committee. This Committee will be comprised of a minimum of three board members and is chaired by the Treasurer. The Finance Committee will make decisions on the management of organization funds, under direction from the HANC Board. The Treasurer will report to the HANC Board at its monthly meeting."
By Calvin Welch, HANC Housing and Land Use Board Member
The price of housing and the dramatic increase in evictions have once again propelled housing affordability into the forefront of debate in San Francisco. The “usual suspects” make the usual arguments: if we only unleash the power of the market by removing “regulations” (rent control, height limits, density requirements, traffic analysis, take your pick) from our over-regulated housing market we could have affordable housing thanks to the immutateble “law” of supply and demand.
The graph above (available on the SF Controllers site http://sfbarometer.weebly.com/new-building-permits.html) shows that in 41 of the last 65 quarters housing production increased in San Francisco and that with that increase in supply THERE WAS AN INCREASE IN PRICE, standing the normal “supply and demand” assumption on its head in San Francisco.
The December 12th HANC meeting , 7 pm at the Park Branch Library, 1833 Page Street, San Francisco, will feature a panel of players engaged in the various legal and legislative efforts to prevent the de-accreditation and closing of San Francisco Community Colleges by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior College (ACCJC). All accreditation agencies are certified/licensed by the US Department of Education.
This issue raises so many important questions about who controls the future of public education in San Francisco and all of California. However, it is easy to get confused by the multiple efforts in play to stop the destruction of our accessible and affordable City College system. To help you figure it out and update you, we have invited the following folks to participate in our panel:
A new proposal by UCSF regarding the management of the Mt. Sutro Open Space eliminates all of the community-negotiated habitat restoration and reforestation elements of the plan. Instead the University proposed to "mow" over 25 acres of understory and trees, including native species to reduce the fire hazard, throwing 15 years of planning out the window along with more than 40,000 hours contributed toward habitat and trails restoration by Sutro volunteers and the countless hours spent at Mt. Sutro meetings by members of our community. More to come!
Art Agnos, San Francisco’s 39th Mayor, and Tim Redmond, former editor of the San Francisco Bay Guardian, came to HANC’s October general meeting to explain why they oppose Propositions B and C.
Proposition B would create a special use district comprised of solely the proposed 8 Washington project, based on the developer’s plans for the project. Proposition C is a referendum, asking the voters whether they approve an ordinance passed by the Board of Supervisors which raised the height limits in the project area from 84 feet to 92 feet for part of the project, and to 136 feet for another part of the project.Former Mayor Agnos was a proponent of demolishing the 50-foot Embarcadero Freeway, to open up the Waterfront to public access and views. He believes that he lost his re-election bid because the freeway was torn down with his advocacy while he was Mayor. The 8 Washington project would add more than 50 feet (the height of the Embarcadero Freeway) to the current height limit, and would be just the first step in building a “Wall on the Waterfront.” If Proposition B or C passes, it would be a signal to our developer-friendly Planning Commission that it is acceptable to grant exemptions to voter-approved height limits for more projects along the Embarcadero and elsewhere in the City. There are additional reasons for opposing the project. Two-thirds of the open space promised by the developers would be private and not open to the general public. The promised payment to the affordable housing fund (paid after the units are sold) is a pittance compared to the more than half a billion dollars in revenue the project will generate. Former Mayor Agnos invited the audience discuss the proposed Warriors development with him after the election.
Bette Mosias, owner of Mendel's, HANC member, friend, and neighborhood icon, passed away on Monday, October 7. She was surrounded by family and very close friends. We are saddened by her death but thankful that she is no longer in pain. There will be a celebration of her life on Sunday October 13, from noon to 5 p.m. at her house in San Francisco. Stop in at Mendel's (1556 Haight Street) by Saturday for the address (Mendel's will be closed on Sunday so the employees can attend).
Bette was never a fan of cut flowers, preferring instead that they lived on so all could enjoy their beauty. Donations to support research toward finding a cure and for supporting women who have breast cancer would be appreciated. There will be a canister for donations that will be forwarded after the celebration.
By Calvin Welch, HANC Housing and Land Use Chair
HANC's October meeting, Thursday, October 10, beginning at 7:00 pm in the Community Room, downstairs at the Park Branch Library, 1833 Page Street, will feature a discussion with Art Agnos and Tim Redmond about Propositions B and C on the November ballot.
The proposed 8 Washington development on the waterfront would build some 134 luxury condo’s (costing an average of $5m each) in a 136 foot high building on a 3.2 acre site on the northern waterfront. The project would require a 62% increase in the current 84 foot height limit. A portion of the project would be built on port land. The development would pay some $11 m in affordable housing exactions, $4.8 m in transit “improvements” and pay the Port $3m for the land. In addition the project would receive additional public funds through a tax increment bond payment, the amount of which is unclear but is in the range of several millions of dollars. No estimate has been made as to the additional costs the project will require of various City departments but a major potential cost impact is the development's 20 million gallon a day sewer line, should it be effected by earthquake or bay level rise over time noted by a recent engineering report.