Thursday, July 15, 2010

November 2010 Local Ballot Measures - San Francisco Chamber of Commerce Public Policy Committee Positions

BOMA San Francisco Members:

The San Francisco Chamber of Commerce's Public Policy Committee, of which BOMA San Francisco is a member, has taken positions on the following measures that may be on the November 2010 San Francisco ballot:

Tax Measures 

Commercial Rent Tax - OPPOSE
Property Transfer Tax Increase - OPPOSE
Parking Tax Increase - OPPOSE

Click here for to review all three tax measures and their economic impact on San Francisco.


Earthquake Retrofit Loan Program  - SUPPORT
  • $39,140,000 General Obligation Bond to provide funding for an Earthquake Safety Retrofit Loan Program to provide funding for seismic retrofits for affordable housing buildings (estimated to be 156).
Charter Amendments

San Francisco Affordable Housing Fund - OPPOSE
  • This measure would create a set-a-side program that would establish a 15 year mandatory baseline of spending on affordable housing based on the 2010-2011 funding by the City.  A similar measure was rejected by voters in 2008.
Requiring the Mayor to Appear Monthly at the Board of Supervisors - OPPOSE
  • Requires the Mayor to attend one regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Supervisors to discuss policy matters and allows the Board to set the rules and guidelines of how the meetings will be conducted.  
Health Service Board Terms and Elections - SUPPORT
  • The Health Service Board is responsible for conducting and annual review of health benefit costs, application of benefits and administering the Health Service System.   This technical Charter amendment will allow the Board to save money on a number of elections required to elect members.
Rent Board - OPPOSE
  • Amendment to change the make-up of the Rent Board by expanding the size of the Board and split the appointment authority (currently 5 mayoral appointments consisting of two tenants, two landlords and one person who is not a tenant or landlord) between the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors.
Definition of a Voter - OPPOSE
  • Currently the San Francisco Charter defines a voter as an elector who is registered in accordance with state law.  This Charter amendment would allow the Board of Supervisors to define a voter for local elections by providing that registration shall be "in accordance with state or municipal law."  Should the Board act to expand the local definition of a voter, and if legal, the City would be required to maintain two registration systems and distribute different ballots in elections where federal, state and local candidates or measures appear on the same ballot.
Transferring Police Functions to Sheriff - OPPOSE
  • This Charter amendment would merge the San Francisco Police Department into the Sheriff's Office and abolish the Police Commission. 
Recreation and Park Commission Split Appointments - OPPOSE
  • Currently, the mayor appoints the seven members of the Recreation and Park Commission.  This amendment would provide that three commission members are appointed by the Mayor; three by the Board of Supervisors.  The seventh member would be jointly appointed by the Mayor and Board.
SFMTA Board Appointments, Budget and Labor Relations - OPPOSE
  • Charter amendment to split appointments to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) Board between the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors; create an Office of Inspector General, require Board of Supervisor approval of labor contracts, set aside additional general fund dollars for the MTA and other provisions.  In November 2005, voters defeated Proposition D, a measure to split MTA board appointments.
Non-Citizen Voting in School Board Elections - OPPOSE
  • Charter amendment would extend the right to vote in school board elections to any resident who is a parent, legal guardian or caregiver of a child residing in the City who is at least 18 years of age and not in prison or on parole for a felony.
Initiative Charter Amendments 

Pension Reform - NEUTRAL 
  • Drafted by Public Defender Jeff Adachi and placed on the November 2010 ballot.  Click here to review the measure.
Transit Operator Salaries - SUPPORT

Community Policing and Foot Beat Patrols - OPPOSE
  • This measure would require the Police Commission to adopt a comprehensive written policy on community policing.
Clarifying who is responsible for collecting and remitting hotel third-party occupancy taxes;amending definition of "permanent resident" - SUPPORT if San Francisco Labor Council's Hotel Fairness Initiative qualifies for the November ballot; if it does not, then NEUTRAL.
  • Click here to review the measure.
Instituting SB 83 Vehicle Registration Fee - NO POSITION
  • Measure would institute an additional $10 annual registration fee on vehicles registered in San Francisco. The money collected from the fee must be spent only on programs and projects that benefit owners of motor vehicles paying the fee and are consistent with a regional transpiration plan.
Initiative Ordinances 

Hotel Fairness Ordinance - OPPOSE
  • Would add 2% on the current Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT).  Currently, San Francisco has a TOT of 14% plus a voluntary Tourism Assessment fee of between 1 & 1.5%, making the current tax rate paid by consumers between 15% and 15.5%.  
Civil Sidewalks - SUPPORT
  • Click here for more information and here to review the measure.
Prohibition on Dual Office Holding - SUPPORT
  • If adopted, this measure will prohibit any person holding city elective office fromm serving on a political party central committee.
  • Click here to review the measure.
Saturday Voting Act - SUPPORT
  • Creates the Saturday Voting Fund to pay for the cost of operating polling places on the Saturday before the November 8, 2011 election.  If there is enough money in the Fund to cover the costs of operating the polling places on Saturday, then the measure would require the City to open all polling places twice during the election - on Saturday, November 5 and on Tuesday, November 8.

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