Newsletter

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July 2019 

Dear Neighbors,

I hope you are enjoying the summer!

I am excited to share with you my July newsletter.

To learn more about my efforts, please feel free to get in touch with my office anytime. You can also follow the real-time work of my office via Twitter and Facebook.

 

 Victory for Over 100 Small Businesses in the Mission
Photo Courtesy Kevin N. Hume, San Francisco Examiner

This month, the legislation I introduced to protect more than 100 small businesses from eviction in the ActivSpace building on 18th Street passed unanimously at the Board of Supervisors!
 
In January, I learned that health and personal services operators renting space in this building were at risk of eviction. I held two community meetings with the tenants and my office connected personally with a large portion of tenants to understand their specific issues. Closing more than 100 small businesses on the same block, all at once, would have been an economic crisis for the Mission, a neighborhood already suffering from the displacement of hundreds of small businesses and thousands of working-class residents due to gentrification.
 
While this legislation is about saving these businesses, I want to be clear that I am also actively working to protect arts and manufacturing spaces. Light manufacturing businesses provide working-class San Franciscans with important blue-collar jobs. The Mission is one of the few neighborhoods where this type of zoning exists (PDR), and we must protect these hard-to-find spaces.
 
I want to thank all the tenants who have been in communication with my office and have helped us find workable solutions. Thank you also for coming to hearings at City Hall and for fighting to stay in San Francisco. Small businesses like yours are the cornerstone of our local economy, and I will continue to support you to stay in the city!

Controlling Corporate Extended-Stay Rentals
Photo via Brock Keeling

By loose count, there are more than 100 units in the Mission being marketed as extended-stay rentals for temporary employees and consultants and many more of these spread throughout District 9 and the rest of the city. They offer direct billing to corporate accounts, stocked kitchens and bathrooms, housekeeping and concierge services, and advertise average per-night rates – what in any other world would be considered a hotel. 
 
This has serious implications for both our housing stock and for San Francisco tenants, and I am working to develop effective and sensible ways to address this. As a first step, I have directed our Budget and Legislative Analyst to prepare a report on the proliferation and impact of corporate rentals in the City.

We need real housing for real San Franciscans, whether they've been here for generations or just newly arrived.

Moving Toward Public Power
Photo by Vincent Laforet

This month, I held a hearing on the San Francisco PUC's preliminary report on breaking our ties to PG&E and creating a green, renewable, reliable public power system for San Francisco.
 
Every day brings another news story about PG&E, and it is clear that it is putting profit above reliability and safety, above its customers and employees, and certainly above our urgent need to respond NOW to climate change.
 
We can’t keep going down this failed path. Taking full ownership of our power system opens exciting opportunities for San Francisco to invest in green jobs and infrastructure, to make our grid smaller and safer and easier to protect and sustain, and to make environmentally sound decisions about energy sources. 

Update on the City’s Response to Homelessness in the Mission
Photo Courtesy Sprung Structures

The need to make progress on our citywide – and our regional – response to homelessness has never been more urgent
 
After some real improvement last year, I have been hearing from many of you recently and have certainly seen for myself that the homelessness crisis has worsened again in the Mission. 

My staff and I are laser-focused on addressing the uptick in tents and people sleeping in doorways and on sidewalks, and we are committed to finding effective, long-term, and humane solutions to the disastrous conditions on our streets.

We have been working closely with Public Works, the Department of Homelessness, the Department of Public Health, and the Mayor’s office to expand the Division Circle Navigation Center (at 13th Street and South Van Ness)  by 60 beds. I have a commitment from the Mayor's office that these beds will be prioritized for people now homeless in the Mission. The beds will be available in mid-September and intensive outreach will happen in the Mission beginning in August to let people know. In the meanwhile, we will continue to work with all of the agencies to find alternative places for people to go.

Standing with Kaiser Mental Health Workers
to Demand Better Patient Care
Photo via Facebook

Earlier this month, I stood with Kaiser mental health workers when they went on strike to demand adequate staffing and timely, accessible services for patients. From the private health care industry to our public hospitals and clinics, our mental health and substance use health care system is broken.

As a lifetime Kaiser member, I will continue to fight to improve our private health care system. And as a member of the Board of Supervisors, together with Supervisor Matt Haney, I am committed to fixing our broken public system by creating a truly universal mental health care system --  Mental Health SF.

Together we will do better by all our city residents and have a truly universal system that will serve all San Franciscans!

Saying Goodbye to Carolina Morales and Welcoming Paul Monge to My Office
Photo via Facebook

It is bittersweet for me to announce that my legislative aide Carolina Morales will be leaving the District 9 office to go to graduate school at UC Berkeley. Carolina’s contributions to my office’s work have been substantial, and I am profoundly grateful for all she has done to serve the constituents of District 9.

Photo via Paul Monge

I am, however, thrilled to announce that we have just hired Paul Monge to join our District 9 team!

Paul Monge is the eldest son of immigrants who found refuge in San Francisco’s Mission District after escaping civil war in their native El Salvador in the early 1980s. Paul joins the District 9 office having most recently served as the Director of Policy and External Affairs at Compass Family Services, a nonprofit agency that supports homeless children and families throughout San Francisco in achieving housing stability and economic self-sufficiency.

He previously worked to address educational inequities within San Francisco public schools as a policy associate with Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth.  He has also been a staff member at the Eviction Defense Collaborative and Legal Services for Children, where he advocated for tenants facing unjust evictions and unaccompanied immigrant children facing removal proceedings. Paul holds a Masters of Public Policy from Harvard University and a law degree from the UC Berkeley School of Law.
 

Welcoming Churn to the Portola
Photo Via Facebook

I am so thrilled to welcome Rica and her first brick and mortar shop, Churn Urban Creamery, to San Francisco's Garden District.
 
2646 San Bruno Ave, under the historic Avenue Theater sign, has been vacant for many years, and I am so glad that Rica has decided to bring her organic, fresh ice cream into this space. We are so glad to have you in the Portola, Rica!

Confronting Ted Cruz Over Border Camps
Photo Courtesy Mani Albrecht, U.S Customs and Border Protection, via Getty Images

When getting off the plane in LAX, I ran into AFCSME 3299 members chanting “free the children” at Senator Ted Cruz. What is happening to children and families at the border is unconscionable, and we must not be silent. 

Inspiring San Mateo to Look at Closing their Juvenile Hall
Photo Courtesy Kevin N. Hume, SF Examiner
Our bravery in committing to shut down juvenile hall – an outdated punishment-based system that further traumatizes youth who need effective help – is starting to bring these ineffective institutions down across the nation. San Mateo just announced that they are looking to close their juvenile hall as well and create something more rehabilitative in its place.
 
We must continue to lead with bold visionary action on our toughest problems. When we have the courage to do so in SF, it spreads quickly!
Clean Team Day in District 9
Photo Courtesy Kevin N. Hume, San Francisco Examiner

My daughter and I joined neighbors and volunteers at Community Clean Team Day in District 9 last week. Can’t appreciate our DPW workers enough. This is hard work! Thank you to everyone who volunteered to make this day such a great one!

 
Community Announcements
 
Nature Play Day
 
Logo and Flyer Courtesy San Francisco Recreation and Parks
Kidz Fest 2019
Courtesy McLaren Park Kidsfest
Neighborfest 2019
Logo Courtesy The Neighborhood Empowerment Network

This year the Neighborhood Empowerment Network, in partnership with DEM, Public Works, and Livable City, has launched the Neighborfest program city-wide.

This initiative provides community members with resources and tools to host the world’s greatest block party, teaches vital organizing capabilities and creates a fun way to get to know the neighbors on your block.

This year we invite you to host a block party on your street. The 2019 Neighborfest application period is now open but only 10 spots are still available.

 

Click here to learn more about hosting a Neighborfest Block Party or email Neighborfest@LivableCity.org

Come Learn about Future Plans for Potrero Yard
Logo Courtesy SFMTA
The SFMTA is hosting a day in the park with food and activities on Saturday, August 10, 12-3 p.m., at Franklin Square Park (2500 17th Street). The afternoon will be an opportunity to talk with staff about the Potrero Yard Modernization Project and get an inside look at the facility through guided tours.
     
No need to RSVP, just stop by and join the fun!
    
Visit sfmta.com/potreroyard to learn more.

 

 
 
 
Got an upcoming event or opportunity to include in this newsletter? Email carolyn.goossen@sfgov.org
Our mailing address is:
Hillary Ronen, District 9 Supervisor
City Hall 
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Room 244
San Francisco, CA 94102-4689