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Newsletter Archive - Read Previous Newsletters

September 2015 Newsletter

Office Phone: 415-554-6968
Email: [email protected]

Office Hours
Wednesday, October 14th
San Francisco City Hall, Room 274

NOTE: Occasionally, we need to reschedule office hours.  To ensure that you learn of any changes before making the effort to attend, please check with the office a day or two before or call the office to put your name on the office hours list so that we can notify you if any changes occur

Volunteering at City Hall
We’re looking for volunteers! If you have a few hours available during the workweek and are interested in a volunteer position at City Hall, please contact Adam Taylor at [email protected] or (415) 554-6968.


Expediting the Construction of Affordable Housing
We need to do everything we can to build more affordable housing in San Francisco and to do so quickly. It takes way too long to approve affordable housing projects, and we need to expedite the process. To do so, I introduced legislation to streamline the permit process for housing projects where 100% of the units are affordable, specifically, by exempting such projects from the requirement to obtain a conditional use authorization and making it easier to use public land (other than parks and open space) to build affordable housing. The conditional use process requires a lengthy process culminating in a hearing before the Planning Commission, even for projects that have little or no opposition. This process can add as much as a year or two to the approval process, time that we simply don' t have in light of our housing crisis. The legislation will not prevent neighbors from receiving notice of projects in their neighborhood and will not prevent anyone from seeking discretionary review of projects to which they object. But the process will be streamlined,which is a long overdue change.

Scott at a roundtable of LGBT leaders convened by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi

We Need More Subways: Subway Master Plan Legislation
San Francisco and the Bay Area are growing tremendously, and we have high levels of gridlock on our streets. We need to move more transit underground to provide more efficient transit options to all parts of San Francisco. To address this, I introduced legislation requiring the city to create a Subway Master Plan. I also published a piece on Medium entitled San Francisco Should Always Have a Subway Under Construction. Currently San Francisco has limited subway capacity, largely consisting of a short subway under Market Street for Muni and a BART subway that runs down Market Street to the Mission and to Daly City. Most of San Francisco has no subway access at all. A second Muni subway tunnel, the Central Subway, is under construction and will open in a few years. The Subway Master Plan will require that the city come up with an outline for long-term subway expansion through a larger swath of the city.

Extending the Central Subway to North Beach
Last week, in the spirit of supporting robust subway construction, I joined my colleague, Supervisor Julie Christensen, to initiate the process to purchase the former site of the Pagoda Theater in North Beach for use as a future subway station. The Central Subway is currently being built north to Chinatown, but the tunnel was bored to the Pagoda Theater site in North Beach. The Central Subway needs to be extended north - ultimately to Fisherman's Wharf - and securing this site for a North Beach station is key.

Scott touring the Central Subway

Transgender Youth Hearing
Transgender and gender non-conforming youth have unique health and social needs, and we need to support these young people and their families. We are seeing many medical advances around the needs of transgender youth, and significant work is occurring at our own UCSF. I recently called for a hearing to discuss and evaluate our city's current approach to transgender youth and what we can do to address these needs of these youth, through public policy interventions as well as budget support for innovative programs.

In-Law Legislation Signed Into Law
Earlier this month, Mayor Ed Lee signed legislation I authored to allow the construction of new in-law units in buildings throughout the district I represent. The legislation allows property owners in all of our district’s neighborhoods to add one or two in-law units in order to increase the city’s housing supply and to do so in an affordable way. According to various studies, in-law units are the most affordable type of non-subsidized housing. Mayor Lee also signed companion legislation by Supervisor Julie Christensen to allow new in-law units in her district (the northeastern neighborhoods). Addressing our housing crisis will require significant focus over time, and the enactment of this legislation is one step forward.

Scott with Supervisor Julie Christensen and supporters of the in-law legislation watching as Mayor Lee signs the ordinances into law

Bicycling and Traffic Enforcement
Part of being a Transit First city includes supporting the use of a wide range of modes of transportation to encourage alternatives to private automobile use, including bicycling. It's important for all users of our streets - drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, and transit operators - to behave courteously, to be safe, and not to engage in reckless or dangerous behavior. People who engage in such behavior, whatever mode of transportation they are employing, should be cited. We also need to ensure that traffic enforcement focuses on the behaviors that are actually endangering the public, rather than going after behavior that isn't harming anyone. We have limited traffic enforcement resources in San Francisco, and focusing on the most dangerous behavior makes sense.

Recently, a debate has emerged in San Francisco about whether cyclists who slowly and cautiously roll through a stop sign without violating anyone's right of way should be cited. While I fully support citing cyclists who blow through stop signs, speeds, violate others' rights of way, or bike on a sidewalk, citing cyclists who simply roll through a stop sign slowly and cautiously doesn't make sense. Citing for these minor offenses is not a good use of resources, does not improve safety, and makes it much harder to bike in our city.

There is a responsible and safe place in the middle, where bicycles should follow the rules of the road with some flexibility to account for the difference between riding a bike and driving a car. As a result, I’m supporting legislation authored by Supervisor John Avalos that accounts for this need to enforce against reckless behavior, while not punishing minor violations that aren’t putting anyone in danger. In addition, I published a piece on Medium titled Let’s Focus Traffic Enforcement on Dangerous Behaviors, Not Minor Bike Violations.


Zamora Moon Lusinchi

Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy, in the heart of the Castro, recently hosted the Fight Cancer Fundraiser on behalf of Zamora Moon Lusinchi, a third grader at Harvey Milk.  In July, Zamora Moon was diagnosed with DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma), an inoperable brain cancer that occurs in children.  Zamora Moon’s family is encouraged by a trial in London but the cost for the trial, accommodations, and airfare is $93,000 in addition to all the other medical costs they have accrued and continue to accrue. If you can, please click here to donate to help pay for Zamora Moon’s medical care as well as help raise awareness about this awful disease.

Scott with Zamora's mother, Marisa, at the Harvey Milk Academy fundraiser

Dolores Park Construction Update
The Recreation and Parks Department has made progress all over the South side of the park, including finishing pouring the walls, floor, and roof for the South restroom. The rough plumbing work is complete and now we’re backfilling the dirt around it to rebuild the adjacent hillside. The department has also poured the concrete curbs for the refurbished walkway adjacent to the MUNI tracks inside the park. Over the next few weeks the walkways will be installed.  Soon the irrigation and soil will be put in place in anticipation of planting the new lawn in late October/early November. For more information, go to the project website here.

Noe Valley Town Square Plans and Community Meeting
A few years ago, I authored legislation to acquire the site of the Noe Valley Farmers Market for the purpose of converting it into a permanent town square. Thanks to community fundraising, several grants, and a budget appropriation I obtained in the most recent budget process, the project is now fully funded and ready to move forward. The Recreation and Park Department will host a community meeting on Tuesday, October 13, at 7:30 PM at St. Philip's Church (725 Diamond Street) to discuss the project design with the community, gather feedback, and answer questions. Work is scheduled to begin this coming January and last approximately 10 months. The Town Square is a visionary and exciting project for the neighborhood, and I encourage people to learn more by contacting the Residents for Noe Valley Town Square here.

Upper Market Street Safety Project
Our office has been working with the community to make Upper Market Street Safer, and I’m pleased to announce that the SFMTA is beginning construction on the first phase of safety improvements on Upper Market Street.  Starting in July, SFMTA paint crews were out on the streets upgrading crosswalks to a bolder, more visible design (called continental crosswalks) at five Market St. intersections: 16th/Noe, 15th/Sanchez, 14th/Church, Dolores/Market and Guerrero/Hermann/Laguna. The SFMTA is also starting to install 10 painted safety zones at three Market St. intersections: 16th/Noe, 15th/Sanchez, and 14th/Church. Painted safety zones slow down turning vehicles and improve visibility of pedestrians. Thanks to everyone in the neighborhood for attending community meetings for the Upper Market Street projects – there is more work to come as we implement the next phase to make the corridor safer. For more information, please click here.

Scott with Walk San Francisco Executive Director Nicole Ferrara helping make Upper Market Street safer for pedestrians

Diamond Heights Boulevard Median Update
Site preparation has begun on the Diamond Heights Boulevard median islands. The work involves clearing overgrown brush and invasive species, tilling and grading the soil, and, mulching the surface in preparation for our volunteers to plant later this fall and winter. City codes require that water be used to suppress dust while the site and soil are being prepared. Irrigation was installed when the boulevard was constructed. Unfortunately, the pipes have decayed through decades of non-use. When the water was activated, several leaks were found, some under the asphalt. As a result, turning on the water---even momentarily---causes pools of water to collect in the gutter and street. Please make your friends and neighbors aware that what might first appear to be water waste is, in fact, required by City code and being tightly managed to minimize waste. As for trees and plants, no healthy trees will be removed. Work on site preparation will continue for the next few weeks. For more information go to this website or call the management office of the Diamond Heights Shopping Center: 415-282-4647.

Syringes in Duboce Park
There has been a recent influx of complaints about improperly discarded syringes in the area of Duboce Park, The US Mint on Hermann streets, and the area around Safeway. The Department of Public Health is working closely with the San Francisco AIDS Foundation (SFAF) to increase clean-up of the area, and has also been in communication with the Police Department, Public Works, and the Recreation Parks Department to increase cleanup sweeps of the area. If you see anything, please report it to 311 immediately.

Muni Service Increases
Muni is adding new service and more convenient connections. Starting September 26th, you’ll see a number of important improvements, including increasing all-day frequencies on the 22 Fillmore and 24 Divisadero lines, running additional K Ingleside, T Third, and N Judah trains during rush hour, and creating new connections to Stonestown, Fort Mason, and other destinations around the city. These are just some of the upgrades the SFMTA has planned across San Francisco. Learn more at MuniForward.com, and give us your feedback at TellMuni.com.

Scott with Reverend Cecil Williams and Janet Mirkitani at Reverend Williams' 86th birthday celebration

HIV Long-Term Survivors Declaration: A Vision For Our Future
Let’s Kick ASS—AIDS Survivor Syndrome has released its new HIV Long-Term Survivors Declaration: A Vision For Our Future. The document highlights the unique and profound experiences of those aging and living with HIV the longest. Let’s Kick ASS spent the past two years engaging long-term survivors in discussions about the issues most affecting thei lives now. This document is based on community feedback.  Since its publication it has been downloaded and read over 19,000 times. "Let’s Kick ASS is a grassroots movement of long-term survivors dedicated to reclaiming our lives, ending isolation, and envisioning a future we never we’d live to see." To read and download the declaration please visit http://letskickass.org/vision-for-our-future/

Reading Partners
Reading Partners is a Bay Area education nonprofit that trains community volunteers to deliver a highly effective, research-validated curriculum to children reading below grade level. You can get involved with Reading Partners this school year. Become a Tutor: Volunteers are the backbone of Reading Partners, successfully closing the literacy gap for K-4 students. Check out this quick video to learn more about Reading Partners’ work in the community, and sign up here to find out more!

Thomas Edison Charter Academy’s Field of Dreams
Thomas Edison Charter Academy (TECA), a public school in San Francisco, has over 700 K-8 students, many of them soccer fans and/or players. TECA parents have organized soccer teams for grades K-3, and the school's Junior Academy players consistently make it to the youth soccer playoffs. This year, TECA is partnering with America Scores to bring its after-school poetry and soccer curriculum to TECA. The TECA Panthers seek to convert over 5000 sq. ft. of concrete schoolyard into a safe, non-toxic turf soccer field (pending expected approval by SFUSD). The new field will increase access to safe space and activity for over 700 children each year and be used at least five days/week for eight to ten hours/day. Click here to learn more and to donate.

Scott at the San Francisco AIDS Foundation Gala with Paul Tan and Rafael Mandelman

13th Annual Housing Heroes Awards
The SF Housing Action Coalition’s Housing Heroes Awards recognizes exceptional accomplishments of our award recipients who truly embody what it means to be a housing hero. I'm honored that HAC will be recognizing me for my advocacy to build more housing of all types and at all levels of affordability. HAC is also honoring Barbara Gualco of Mercy Housing for building a truly remarkable portfolio of affordable housing in San Francisco for those who need it most. The San Francisco Housing Action Coalition advocates for the creation of well-designed, well-located housing at all levels of affordability, to meet the needs of San Franciscans, present and future. The 13th Annual Housing Heroes Awards will take place on Wednesday, October 14th from 5:30-8:30pm at the San Francisco War Memorial & Performing Arts Center.

San Francisco Political Squares
It is political season in San Francisco, so Under the Golden Gate is throwing a party to celebrate and lampoon one of the most celebrated cities on the planet, bring up important political issues, and even raise some money for charity. Taking a riff on the classic game show Hollywood Squares, Under the Golden Gate has packed the square with fabulous names. Hosted by Roma, I will join Heklina, Tom Ammiano, Tom Temprano, Marga Gomez, Marke Bieschke, Kaseem Bentley, Broke-Ass Stuart, Natasha Muse, and more. Four charities represented by Mutha Chucka, Evan Johnson, Joe Wicht and Monet Allard will play tic-tac-toe and compete for a fabulous cash prize. The idea is to discuss important issues affecting San Francisco as it flexes and changes like never before but to do so in a humorous way in the context of a game show which in turn helps out local charities! SF Political Squares will take place on Tuesday, October 6th at 7:30pm at Oasis, 298 11thh Street.


Scott celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Tommy's Mexmican Restaurant on Geary 

San Francisco Green Film Festival
Enter your short film into our Climate Action Film Contest and win cash prizes, filmmaking software, plus a special screening of your film at the 2016 SF Green Film Festival. Deadline: November 6, 2015. The San Francisco Green Festival is seeking films of 3 minutes or less that tell your climate action story. Whether it's about compost, cycling, or growing your own vegetables, we want to see a short film that shows how we can all take action for the climate. It is free to enter and there are no restrictions on style or genre, when the work was made, or how many entries you may submit. Youth and multi-lingual submissions are particularly welcome. Full details of prizes and entry details are on the website.

Changes to AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP)
The income eligibility criteria for ADAP/OAHIPP has changed to individuals with a Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) that does not exceed 500% of the Federal Poverty Level per year based on family size and household income. Now, single individuals with a MAGI of no more than $58,850 per year may be eligible for ADAP/OA-HIPP. For a household of two, the income limit is $79,650. Because of these changes, many more people may be eligible for these programs, and eligibility may discontinue for others. For more information about the messaging campaign or changes to ADAP and OAHIPP, please contact our Equal Access to Healthcare Program’s Supervising Attorney, Chuan Teng, Esq., at [email protected] or 415-972-0821.

Twin Peaks Trails Improvement Project Update
The Twin Peaks Trail Restoration project will improve the main spine trail, repair existing trails and steps, eliminate social trails, provide erosion control measures, restore native plants and provide trail identification and wayfinding signage. These measures will improve public safety, reduce erosion, and help preserve adjacent habitat. As part of the “Creeks to Peaks” project, a new trail segment adjacent to Twin Peaks Boulevard but off the roadway will extend southward and connect to Portola Avenue. In addition to providing greater pedestrian safety this new trail segment will complete the regional trail connection to Glen Canyon Park and help to complete the Creeks to Peaks Trail.
Taking an Active Part in Planning for your Neighborhood
The Planning Department has added a new video to its archive to help citizens to participate in the work that they do. This video is a brief overview for the public on how they can take an active role in a variety of our planning efforts within their neighborhood and the city at large. The video is available on the Department's YouTube page.

Scott at the Autumn Moon Festival in the Sunset with Supervisor Katy Tang


Grants for the Arts
Thursday, October 1st
Mission Cultural Center, 2868 Mission Street
Grants for the Arts will be hosting How to Apply Workshops to meet prospective grantees, review eligibility requirements, and answer questions. RSVP by clicking the link here.

Spark! 2015, A 13th Anniversary Celebration
Thursday, October 1st
Sir Francis Drake, A Kimpton Hotel, 450 Powell Street
The Transgender Law Center will bring hundreds of our closest supporters together for SPARK!, TLC’s 13th anniversary celebration taking place at Sir Francis Drake, a Kimpton Hotel in downtown San Francisco.

Legalizing In-law Units and Creating New Apartments in Your Building
Thursday, October 1st
Umpqua Bank, 3938 24th Street
Learn how to legalize unwarranted apartments and legally add new units. Combine the project with your seismic upgrade. Mark Hogan and Ian Dunn, Principals of OPENSCOPE STUDIOS, are the architects who wrote the handbook for the San Francisco Planning Department on adding units to existing dwellings. Kimia Haddadan is a Planner with City of San Francisco who is involved with developing and analyzing legislation related to affordable housing policies. Kate Conner is the Housing Implementation Specialist with the City & County of San Francisco Planning Department charged with implementing housing legislation and managing affordable housing projects. Refreshments will be served.

Supervisor Wiener at the dedication of Muni's E Line on the Embarcadero

Global March for Elephants and Rhinos
Saturday, October 3rd
Start: Jefferson Square Park, End: United Nations Plaza
On October 3rd and 4th people throughout the world will march as one voice. More than 35,000 elephants are being killed every year so their tusks can be carved into ivory trinkets. A rhino is slaughtered once every 8 hours for its horn. Their only hope for survival lies in an immediate end to the ivory and rhino horn trade (both "legal" and "illegal") and the chance to recover from decades of mass slaughter. Click here for more.

20th Annual St. Nicholas Middle Eastern Food Festival
Saturday, October 3rd
Sunday, October 4th
Saint Nicholas Syrian Antiochian Orthodox Church, 5200 Diamond Heights Blvd
St. Nicholas Orthodox Church in San Francisco is pleased to host the 20th Annual Middle Eastern Food Festival. You won't want to miss: live music, hookah lounge, debkeh performances (cultural dancing, fantastic & delicious Mediterranean food, church tours, henna tattoos, photo booth, jumper for the kids and much more. For more information, please contact the Church office at 415-648-5200 or [email protected]

Castro Street Fair
Sunday, October 4th
Castro Street: 19th to Market Streets; Market Street: Noe to Eureka Streets; 18th Street: Diamond to Noe Streets
The Castro Street Fair is a community street celebration that was founded by Harvey Milk in 1974. Hundreds of local artists, vendors, craftspeople, and organizations line the streets and celebrate the diversity of the neighborhood. Stages with live entertainment and dance stages can be found throughout the fairgrounds. The Fair is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization and all proceeds go directly to charitable causes important to the Castro community.

San Francisco Political Squares
Tuesday, October 6th
Oasis, 298 11th Street
Under the Golden Gate is throwing a party to celebrate and lampoon one of the most celebrated cities on the planet, bring up important political issues and even raise some money for charity. Taking a riff on the classic game show Hollywood Squares, Under the Golden Gate has packed the square with fabulous names. Hosted by Roma, I will join Heklina, Tom Ammiano, Tom Temprano, Marga Gomez, Marke Bieschke, Kaseem Bentley, Broke-Ass Stuart, Natasha Muse, and more.

City College Community Town Hall
Wednesday, October 7th
City College of San Francisco - Mission Campus, Room 109
CCSF’s new Interim Chancellor Susan Lamb, Members of the Board of Trustees, and the Vice Chancellors will be in attendance. Open to the public.

Scott facing off against Mayor Ed Lee at the Sunday Streets Ping Pong Tournament in Chinatown

Walk and Roll to School Day
Wednesday, October 7th
Various Morning Times & Locations throughout San Francisco
Walk and Roll to School Day celebrates walking (and rolling for those unable to walk) as a healthy, fun way for kids and families to get to school. This event jump-starts a yearlong effort to encourage more kids and families to walk, bike, take transit, and carpool to school in San Francisco. The SF Safe Routes to Schools Partnership provides outreach and technical assistance to the school community to encourage healthier modes of transportation. For more information and a list of participating schools, click here.

Resilient Diamond Heights Workshop - Building a Strong Community
Thursday, October 8th
St. Aidan’s Church, 101 Diamond Heights Boulevard, Upper Level
The Resilient Diamond Heights (RDH) Workgroup will present a workshop for people who would like to enhance the disaster readiness of their organizations. The Workshop is free and includes lunch.  SFCARD (Community Agencies Responding to Disasters) will lead the workshop.  The presentation will raise awareness of likely challenges for local or regional emergencies and will help to plan for solutions to those challenges.  For information and to enroll in the RDH Workshop, please contact, Betsy Eddy at [email protected]

Italian Heritage Parade
Sunday, October 11th
Start: Jefferson and Stockton Streets, End: Washington Square
A San Francisco institution since it was established in 1868, the Annual Italian Heritage Parade is the nation's oldest Italian-American parade and community celebration. Highlights include dozens of handcrafted parade floats featuring Bay Area businesses, community groups, and Italian organizations; local high school Italian clubs and marching bands; festive open-air dining and Italian wine and food specials at North Beach restaurants lining the Parade route; performances by a variety of traditional Italian musicians and performance artists; and special appearances by Bay Area and Italian-American celebrities.

Mission_YMCA_senior_lunch.jpgScott visiting the Mission YMCA Senior Lunch program

2015 Latino Heritage Month Celebration and Awards Ceremony
Tuesday, October 13th
San Francisco City Hall, 1 Dr. Cartlon B. Goodlett Place, Rotunda & North Light Court
Refreshments will be provided after the ceremony in the North Light Court.

Noe Valley Town Square Community Meeting
Tuesday, October 13th
St. Philip's Church, 725 Diamond Street
The Recreation and Park Department will host a community meeting to discuss the project design with the community, gather feedback, and answer questions. Work is scheduled to begin this coming January and last approximately 10 months. For more information, click here.

13th Annual Housing Heroes Awards
Wednesday, October 14th
San Francisco War Memorial & Performing Arts Center, 401 Van Ness Avenue, Green Room
The SF Housing Action Coalition’s Housing Heroes Awards recognizes exceptional accomplishments of our award recipients who truly embody what it means to be a housing hero.

San Francisco Collaborative Against Human Trafficking Conference
Friday, October 16th
Phillip Burton Federal Building, 450 Golden Gate Ave, California Room
Join educators, survivors, direct service providers, government agencies, and law enforcement, to learn more about the practical aspects of collaboration in combating all forms of human trafficking. The conference will feature best practices and strategies for agencies and communities to coordinate anti-trafficking efforts and assist victims. Click here for more.

Scott showing his support for Friends of the Urban Forest and San Francisco's trees and greenery

Sunday Streets in the Mission
Sunday, October 18th
Valencia Street: McCoppin to 26th Streets
Sunday Streets are events that encourage recreation, community activities and fun in San Francisco. Sunday Streets closes stretches of city streets to automobile traffic, and opens them to people for several hours on a various Sundays throughout the year, so participants can enjoy a large, temporary, public space where they can bike, walk, run, dance, do yoga, or do any other physical activity. Non-profit and health organizations offer free activities and share information about their services during the event.

City College Community Town Hall
Wednesday, October 21st
City College of San Francisco – Downtown Campus, 88 4th Street, Room 821
Location:  Downtown Center, Room 821
CCSF’s new Interim Chancellor Susan Lamb, Members of the Board of Trustees, and the Vice Chancellors will be in attendance. Open to the public.

Scott at the 50th Anniversary celebration of the Chinese Cultural Center

UN Plaza Friday Night Market
Friday, October 23rd
United Nations Plaza
Amid the backdrop of a glowing City Hall and twinkling string lights, the Night Market attracts nearby workers, neighborhood residents, students and visitors alike to spend Friday evenings eating, drinking, shopping, dancing and listening to music in the historic plaza.

Affordable Housing Bonus Program Open House
Monday, October 26th
San Francisco City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, North Light Court
The Affordable Housing Bonus Program (AHBP) provides incentives for developers to include more affordable housing for very low, low, moderate, and middle-income households. Development bonuses, such as increased density, would be offered on a graduated scale based on the percentage of affordable units provided. This proposed Program is one of the tools put forward by the City to address its housing goals.

San Francisco Village District 8 Informational Meeting
Saturday, November 7th
Eureka Valley/Harvey Milk Memorial Branch Library, 1 Jose Sarria Court
Sunday, November 15th
Sunnyside Conservatory, 236 Monterey Boulevard
San Francisco Village is a nonprofit network of San Franciscans over 60, a lively, diverse group committed to helping each other when there's a need. They are advocates for aging in the best, most vibrant way possible, our lives growing, not shrinking. Yet, they’re realistic about the transitions that come with getting older. San Francisco Village helps their members prepare for and navigate these transitions by offering friendship, expert guidance, and services.

Last updated: 10/2/2015 10:36:19 AM