Club members and friends will hear arguments pro and con for a variety of measures on the November 4th ballot. These include a literal turf battle (real vs. fake grass in the parks), the Pier 70 development height limit increase, an attempt to “balance” transportation priorities (oh, pity the poor cars!), the sugary beverage tax, a question about an amendment to overturn Citizens United, an anti-speculation tax, a fund for children and youth. In short, something for almost everyone.

We will also talk about the Eden Foods boycott (featuring another Hobby Lobby-esque owner suing to foist his own religious beliefs on employees).

WHEN: Tuesday August 5 at 7:00pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St @ Southern Heights

Wednesday July 2: DEBATE!

June 19th, 2014

Candidates for District 10 Supervisor shared their ideas, expertise, and love for the neighborhoods of District 10 Wednesday at the Neighborhood House in an intense debate, ably guided by moderator Marisa Lagos of the SF Chronicle. All five official candidates held the standing-room-only audience rapt. Candidates, left to right: Ed Donaldson, Marlene Tran, incumbent Malia Cohen, Tony Kelly, and Shawn Richard. An amazing turnout with lots of energy and enthusiasm. Every candidate had important and insightful information on how Potrero Hill and District 10 can best be served by the city of San Francisco.

At the end of the evening, after first-choice votes were counted, Tony Kelly won the Club’s endorsement.

Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi (right) gave an update on happenings in and around the SF Sheriff’s Department, including a number of initiatives regarding public safety and rehabilitation both inside and outside the jail system.

Ed Kinchley, SEIU 2121′s political education co-chair, talked about the Campaign for a Healthy California, whose mission is to “finish the job on health reform” by eventually replacing private health insurance with guaranteed healthcare for all Californians.

The Club voted to join Campaign for a Healthy California’s coalition as an endorser.

Because the theater was in use as a polling place, we met downstairs in the Game Room.

WHEN: Tuesday June 3 at 7:00pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St @ Southern Heights


Sunday Streets in DogpatchPHDC was there with endorsed-campaign swag, voter registration forms, 94107 t-shirts and CA DISCLOSE Act petitions.

PHDC housing panelThe housing situation in our fair City is dire and fast-changing. Housing prices explode; protests against evictions escalate; legislation is introduced at state and local levels; lawsuits are filed by the City Attorney.  San Francisco leads the nation in income disparity. Participants in a thought-provoking discussion, which included plenty of audience Q&A, were:

Tim Colen,  Executive Director,  SF Housing Action Coalition
Sara Shortt, Executive Director, SF Housing Rights Committee
Calvin Welch, founder, Council of Community Housing Organizations

Brad Paul, Deputy Executive Director, Association of Bay Area Governments,  moderated.

The above program was co-sponsored by our friends at San Francisco for Democracy.

At the start of the meeting, speaking briefly and toting campaign swag, were the endorsed campaigns of Yes on B – Voter Approval for Waterfront Development Height Increases (Tim Hester) ; Betty Yee for Controller (Jay Cheng); Derek Cressman for Secretary of State (Joni Eisen).

WHEN: Tuesday, May 6, @ 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Hts

Derek Cressman, Christina Olague for Alex Padilla

4-1-14 Betty YeeA discussion with Democratic candidate for Secretary of State Derek Cressman (above left) and former SF Supervisor Christina Olague, surrogate for Dem candidate Alex Padilla, was  moderated by PHDC’s  J.R. Eppler, who so ably presided over the Assembly candidate debate last month. Audience members asked their own questions. Here’s a link to the video of this segment that Tom Brown can be seen shooting in the photo above.

Democratic candidate for Controller Betty Yee (left) discussed her campaign and answered questions, and Bill Barnes, surrogate for Democrat John Pérez , campaigned for his candidate.  The three candidates for SF Superior Court Judge, Seat 20 (the only open seat), Daniel Flores, Carol Kingsley, and Kimberly Williams, spoke separately of their experience and qualifications, also engaging in Q&A.

Three propositions were covered, with speakers in support and opposition: SF Proposition A – Earthquake Safety and Emergency Response Bond – Bill Barnes spoke for, Aubrey Freedman against; CA Proposition 41 – Veterans Housing and Homeless Prevention Bond Act of 2014Executive Director of Swords to Ploughshares Michael Blecker  spoke in favor, PHDC board member Joni Eisen presented arguments against;  CA Proposition 42 - Public Records. Open Meetings. State Reimbursement to Local Agencies – PHDC board members J.R. Eppler (for) and Kate Gaidos Eppler (against) duked it out for this one. Photos by Kate Gaidos.

Members voted that night on endorsements in the above races, as well as everything else in the June Primary. Ballots were counted at the end of the meeting. Results for the contests argued by speakers:

Secretary of State: Derek Cressman
Controller: Betty Yee
SF Superior Court Judge: No position (vote too close; no one achieved the requisite 60% threshold)
Prop A: YES
Prop 41: YES
Prop 42: YES

Click here for the complete list of endorsements for the June 3rd election.

WHEN: Tuesday April 1 at 7:00pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

David Campos, David Chiu, J.R. Eppler
the crowdPotrero Hill Democratic Club presented a lively and informative debate between the two Supervisors running to succeed Tom Ammiano in the State Assembly, District 17: David Campos and David Chiu. The two Davids, both Harvard-educated attorneys, agreed that they agreed on a lot – and also tried to bring their differences into sharp focus.  Moderator, PHDC board member J.R. Eppler (right), did a stellar job. The result of the endorsement vote? A flat-out tie. Photos by Kate Gaidos.

Members did vote to endorse YES on Prop B, the Voter Approval for Waterfront Development Height Increases initiative, after presentations and Q&A with Jon Golinger for and Corinne Woods against.

WHEN: Wednesday March 5 at 7:30pm.
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Feb 2014 Water meetingA presentation about PUC policy and proposed water rate hikes by the SF Public Utilities Commission‘s Yolanda Manzone (center left), Environmental Justice and Land Use Analyst, and Jamie Querubin (center right), SFPUC Financial Analyst,  was followed by a very lively conversation about the drought, its implications and, yes, opportunities, with Jennifer Clary (left),Water Policy and Legislative Analyst for Clean Water Action, the SFPUC reps, and moderator, former CA PUC President Loretta Lynch (right). Photo by John O’Neill.

Club business included  election of  2014 Club Officers.

WHEN: Tuesday, February 4th at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

To begin our  eighth year, PHDC had several things on the agenda:

● Presentation by Ubring your own foodNITE HERE Local 2, representing the 750 concession workers at AT&T Park. Employed by a subcontractor called Centerplate, they are involved in a difficult campaign to achieve a fair contract  and haven’t had a wage increase or new contract since April 2010. Workers who shared their stories were Bobby McCall and Patricia Ramirez, joined  by union organizer Julia Wong. Following the meeting, PHDC held an online vote and passed a resolution in support of the concession workers.

● A check-in with members to assess which topics & issues they would most like the Club to take on. People voted by pinning dots on the donkey next to their choices.

● Nominations opened for 2014 officers (election in Feb).

WHEN: Tuesday, January 7th at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

The Potrero Boosters again graciously invited PHDC to co-sponsor their Holiday Party. The annual festivities were held this year at a new space, the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts. A lovely party, filled with neighbors enjoying the great food and holiday cheer. California Senator Mark Leno and District 9 Supervisor David Campos were both there. And, to spread the cheer further, guests filled several bags and boxes of food to donate to the SF Food Bank.

WHEN: Saturday, December 14, from 4:00 to 7:00pm
WHERE: 360 Kansas St between 16th & 17th

PHDC’s next regular meeting will be Tuesday, January 7, 2014.

Since our regular meeting place – the theater at the Neighborhood House – was a polling place on election night, we gathered at the Dogpatch Saloon, site of our recent auction.  CCSF Trustee Rafael Mandelman presented his recently proposed Resolution in Support of City College (the club signed on to the SaveCCSF coalition back in March – but a lot has happened since then). Not having a quorum of voting members just then, we continued the vote online later and passed the resolution unanimously. Representatives of BRITE (Bayview Residents Improving Their Environment)  discussed their opposition to the proposed renovation/expansion of a homeless drop-in shelter on Jennings St, and their ideas for an alternative site. A proponent of the project was invited but did not appear.

Election results: WE WON this battle against the rampant greed-fueled development of precisely the housing San Francisco does not need. Props B & C lost big – but the struggle to keep our city affordable for the non-rich is far from over.

WHEN: Tuesday, November 5th at 6:30pm
WHERE: Dogpatch Saloon, 2496 Third St @ 22nd St

Mike CaseyMichael TheriaultIt was back to politics on Tuesday: Leaders of organized labor spoke about the movement’s relevance. PHDC’s regular monthly meeting featured Mike Casey (left), President of the San Francisco Labor Council, and Michael Theriault, Secretary-Treasurer of the San Francisco Building and Construction Trades Council. Though frequently in solidarity, their respective organizations are not always in agreement on some issues. As always, there was ample time for audience interaction -  which continued after the meeting was adjourned.

We also had a recap of the fabulously fun and successful auction the Club held Saturday. THANK YOU AUCTION DONORS!

WHEN: Tuesday, October 1 at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Please join Potrero Hill Democratic Club members and friends for an evening of live jazz, food and fun. Plus lots of cool stuff for your bidding pleasure from the fabulous merchants and artists of Potrero Hill and Dogpatch.

Music will be performed by fantastic jazzmen Chuck Bennett on bass, Mark Rosengarden on drums, and Ray Scott on guitar. Dogpatch Saloon will provide the beautiful venue and no-host bar, and food will be courtesy of local eateries and PHDC members.

Bring a friend – and don’t forget your checkbook for the auction. You just might get an amazing deal. You can check out the ever-expanding donor list here. See you at the party!

San Francisco’s Municipal Election is November 5, 2013. It’s true that the three citywide officers who are running for election or reelection are running unopposed – but that’s no reason not to take advantage of a great opportunity to meet them face-to-face, find out what they’ve done and intend to do, and ask them anything you want. Appearing before the Club seeking endorsement – successfully – were:

Carmen Chu for Assessor-Recorder (appointed incumbent) -  endorsed
José Cisneros for Treasurer (incumbent) – endorsed
Dennis Herrera for City Attorney (incumbent) – endorsed

Four local propositions are on the ballot as well, and they are more complicated than you might think. After speakers pro & con for Props A, B, and D, with plenty of back-and-forth between the sides, as well as audience Q&A, the Club endorsed the following votes on the November ballot:

A. Retiree Health Care Trust Fund.  Charter Amendment – YES 
B. 8 Washington Street – (developer’s) Initiative. Ordinance – NO
C. 8 Washington Street – Referendum. Ordinance. – NO (PHDC had already voted previously to oppose)
D. Prescription Drug Purchasing. Declaration of Policy. – YES

The meeting ended with members signing up to help with our annual party & auction, coming Saturday, September 28th at Dogpatch Saloon (see below).

 

We are excited to be the first community group to hold an event at the just-renovated Dogpatch Saloon on 3rd St at 22nd. Set for 5-8pm on Saturday, September 28th, this community party + Club fundraiser will feature live jazz, great food & fabulous stuff to bid on from the wonderful merchants, artists and neighbors of Potrero Hill and Dogpatch. No-host bar, free admission. See you there!

Our July “meeting” took place in Dolores Park on a sizzling Fourth, campaigning for the CA DISCLOSE Act, registering voters, and watching the SF Mime Troupe’s premier performance. Then we were ready to return to our regular venue on the Hill.Bush, Chiu, Herrera, Eppler

City Attorney Dennis Herrera and Board of Supervisors President David Chiu (center, r. to l.), having introduced a package of local ethics reform legislation, both appeared on a panel with Larry Bush (left), editor of CitiReport.com and a member of Friends of Ethics. The excellent, illuminating and thought-provoking panel was skilfully moderated by club secretary J.R. Eppler (right). Photo by Jo Elias-Jackson.

WHEN: Tuesday, August 6th at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

 

Sunday Streets in the Mission, July 28th. Volunteers take a break from registering voters and campaigning for the California DISCLOSE Act. Photo by Linda Post.Sunday Streets in the Mission July 28

 

Citizens Climate Lobby carbon fee slideshowOIL. The upper safety limit for atmospheric CO2 is 350 parts per million (ppm). We’ve just hit 400 ppm. Dave Massen (SF group leader) and Jeff Whittington of Citizens Climate Lobby (click here for recent NY Times article about CCL) want to cut greenhouse gas emissions and promote transition to a green energy economy through carbon fee and dividend:  taxing carbon pollution from fossil fuels, while ending subsidies to fossil fuel companies. This idea is an alternative to cap and trade, which now exists in California. After the presentation (photo above by Maulik Shah), Club members voted to sign on to a letter urging Congress to enact carbon fee & divArt Agnos and Rick Weltsidend legislation.

WATERFRONT. Is the proposed Golden State Warriors Arena development project for Piers 30-32 being rushed through without appropriate scrutiny? Former Mayor Art Agnos of the San Francisco Waterfront Alliance thinks so, and he told us why.  Warriors President and Chief Operating Officer Rick Welts joined Mayor Agnos with a different perspective. Many questions, much passion, a great meeting.
Photo by Linda Post

WHEN: Tuesday, June 4th at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Health Care Reform panelThe Affordable Care Act, known as “Obamacare,” will be fully enacted come January 1, 2014. But did you know that the new California Health Benefit Exchange (known as Covered California) will be open for enrollment in October?

Our extremely knowledgeable panel consisted of (left to right) Bonnie Preston, MSPH, Outreach & Policy Specialist at the US Department of Health & Human Services, to discuss basics about the federal law and our state’s insurance exchange, (Covered California) where people can compare plans and determine eligibility for tax credits; Patricia McGinnis, Executive Director of California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform, on the effects of reform on seniors;  Sumi Sousa, Officer of Policy Development and Coverage Programs at San Francisco Health Plan, with a San Francisco perspective. Ms. Sousa also helped write the law that created Covered California. The discussion, including extensive audience Q&A, was both detailed and far-ranging. Another illuminating evening at PHDC! The Club also passed a resolution opposing cuts to Social Security benefits and advocating lifting or scrapping the cap on income subject to Social Security taxes .

WHEN: Tuesday, May 7 at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

With increased population growth, climate change, and the inevitable “big one,” securing San Francisco’s water supply will require creative and forward-looking plans. Attendees heard from experts about these and other water issues in our city and in the state, including: the dangers fracking in California; ways that San Francisco is slowly mitigating its practice of treating rainwater runoff as if it were wastewater; chemicals in drinking water in other parts of the state; taxing fertilizer to offset the contamination it causes. Conversation-starters Jennifer Clary of Clean Water Action, Ellen Levin of SF Public Utilities Commission, and Adam Scow of Food & Water Watch opened the program, followed by breakout groups and a final Q&A session. Earlier in the meeting, PHDC members updated the group on past topics, including the CA DISCLOSE Act, gun safety legislation, and saving City College.

WHEN: Tuesday, April 2 at 6:45pm (meeting at 7pm)
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

PHDC banner at the March 14 rallyYou may have heard about the recent occupation of the Administration Building by CCSF students, with four specific demands in response to sanctions imposed by the accreditation commission. Students, faculty, staff, trustees and alumni all want to keep City College of San Francisco open – but they don’t all agree on the best approach. Panel discussion with representatives from:

City College of SF Board of Trustees – Two members with differing perspectives: Rafael Mandelman and Steve Ngo.

Save CCSF – Coalition of faculty, students, staff, & community members: Professor Rodger Scott and student Inder Grewal

A civil discussion was held around the various takes on the situation, with questions from the audience.  After the panel discussion, Club members had a separate meeting and voted to endorse and attend the Save CCSF rally at City Hall on March 14th at 4pm. There’s our banner at the rally, above.

WHEN: Tuesday, March 5th, 6:45pm (program at 7pm sharp!)
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Gun Control meetingWhat are the chances for a meaningful, effective response to the ever-increasing gun violence in this country? Three excellent speakers engaged the audience around this question. Robyn Thomas, Executive Director of Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, discussed current gun laws, the Second Amendment and the prospects for proposed legislation to pass. She emphasized showing elected officials that we are watching; till now the anti-gun control side has been much louder and stronger. Tell the President and other electeds what you think: Thank them for their efforts to reduce gun violence. Captain Robert O’Sullivan of the Bayview Police Station discussed what his officers see – and seize – on the ground. He urged those in attendance to mentor young people who need positive role models. Assistant District Attorney Mike Maffei talked about the San Francisco DA’s office’s handling of cases involving guns. The conversations lasted well after the meeting was adjourned.

2013 Club officers were elected by acclamation.

WHEN: Thursday, February 7th at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Heights

The table discussions last month sharply revealed how important money in politics, in all its incarnations, remains for PHDC members and friends. On the January agenda: Action at the Chevron refinery January 19th to mark the third anniversary of Citizens United – see calendar listing. The  2013 California DISCLOSE Act, SB 52, authored by Senator Mark Leno (along with Senator Jerry Hill of San Mateo) – and what you can do to help get it passed this year (check out the local working group web site for action opportunities). Possibly the perfect antidote to money invested to increase profits for the few: time and energy invested by citizens for the good of the many – Martin Luther King, Jr. National Day of Service – Saturday, Jan. 19th. There are plenty of events right in San Francisco. The Habitat for Humanity event discussed at the meeting is now filled.

Also: Discussion and vote on proposed changes to the Bylaws, plus the start of nominations for 2013 officers.

WHEN: Tuesday, January 8th at 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Heights

 

 

Tom AmmianoThe December meeting of Potrero Hill Democratic Club – co-sponsored by Noe Valley Democratic Club and San Francisco for Democracy – was about the (mostly gratifying) results of the election – especially the unanticipated gift of a Democratic super-majority in both of California’s state houses. Special guests included Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (left), who began the program by describing the situation and prospects for reform in Sacramento, and then took questions. Next, CA Democratic Party Region 4 Director and Calitics blogger Brian Leubitz and Helen Grieco, Common Cause Organizer for Northen California spoke briefly, then joined a series of small round-table discussions with attendees. The gathering concluded with brief reports from each table “host,” then Helen led a wrap-up discussion with Q&A. Conversations centered around what issues participants most wanted to see addressed by elected representatives, and ultimately how we, individually and as a club,  can best work to move forward in realizing our goals. It was one of our liveliest meetings, and quite well-attended.

Tuesday, December 4 at 7pm
Potrero Hill Neighborhood House
953 De Haro St @ Southern Heights

This is it, the final stretch. There are people who have registered to vote and who support President Obama and other important down-ticket candidates and issues. But we have to make sure they actually vote. That’s why these last days of phoning are so absolutely crucial. Our two closest Get-Out-The-Vote staging areas in SF are:

Democratic/OFA Headquarters
228 Market St at Noe

and

Westbay Conference Center
1290 Fillmore at Eddy

They are each open 9am to 9pm Sat-Mon, and 6am to 6pm on Election Day. Click on either one to sign up for a shift – or just drop in.

Wed Oct 3rd: Debate Watch Party

September 17th, 2012

We met on the first Wednesday instead of the Tuesday, because that’s when the first Presidential Debate happened. We enjoyed food, drink, friends, neighbors, campaign speakers, strange debate performances and door prizes at the Connecticut Yankee that night.

WHEN: Wednesday, October 3, 6 – 8pm
WHERE: Connecticut Yankee, 100 Connecticut St @ 17th
Debate Watch party

 

 

Tuesday, Sept 4, 6:30 – 9pm: Ballot measure endorsement meeting. State and local ballot measures, speakers pro and con. Q&A of course. Check out the results of voting here. To be endorsed, a proposition or candidate must get 60% of votes cast.

Tuesday, Sept 11, 7 – 9pm: Candidate endorsement meeting. Candidates for Board of Education and  SF Community College Board of Trustees. Candidate questionnaires received from these folks may be viewed here. Candidates for BART Director for District 7 (includes Dogpatch) and District 9 (includes Potrero Hill) were also invited to speak. Here are the Club’s endorsements.

Both meetings took place at the Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Heights.

Our event August 11th was a great success, largely thanks to the generosity of our donors.  What a phenomenal neighborhood!

All States Best Foods
Aperto
ARCH Drafting Supplies Inc
Bell & Trunk Flowers
Jason Benlevi author
Dr. Ann Brinkley, DC
Senator John Burton and Supervisor Malia Cohen
Career Insiders
Chat’s
Chiotras Grocery
Christopher’s Books
Collage Gallery
Connecticut Yankee
Dig
Dogpatch Saloon
Joni Eisen Cake Portraits
Farley’s
Fei Tian Academy of the Arts
Fregosi & Company Paints
Ganim’s Market
Gilberths Rotisserie & Grill
Goat Hill Pizza
The Good Life Grocery
Grand Pu Pah Thai Restaurant & Bar
Hazel’s Kitchen
Just For You Café
Kate’s Closet
Allana Lee Katz jewelry
Peter Linenthal author & illustrator
Marcella’s Lasagneria & Cucina
Moshi Moshi Sushi & Grill
Pawtrero Bath House & Feed Co
Pera
Photography by Emily Payne
Plow
Post & Parcel, Inc
Potrero Chiropractors & Acupuncture
Quince Spa
The Ramp
Rickshaw Bagworks
Rocketfish
Skool Restaurant
Marlene Tran
Winnie S. Tsang
The Workshop Residence
Yield Wine Bar

You are invited to enjoy food, jazz and great deals! PHDC’s “Shop Local” Silent Auction is a party for the community that doubles as a fundraiser for the club. Great food from club members and local eateries; live jazz by fantastic musicians David Austin on piano, Chuck Bennett on bass, and Mark Rosengarden on drums; lots of tempting items for your bidding pleasure from the wonderful merchants and artists of Potrero Hill & Dogpatch. No-host bar. Admission is free, open to the public.

WHEN: Saturday, August 11th, 5pm  – 8pm
WHERE: Dogpatch Saloon, 2496 Third St at 22nd

 

Final details for our August 11th party & auction. Preview of auction items. Organizing for America neighborhood team leader Kierith Jones and Obama convention delegate Arthur Murillo with news of several ways to get involved, now and in the future. Jon Golinger, Campaign Director for the No Wall on the Waterfront Campaign, against the 8 Washington development. Alec Bash with arguments in favor. The urgent situation of the California DISCLOSE Act, and a resolution concerning its status.

Update: The Club passed the DISCLOSE resolution, and also voted to sign on to the No Wall on the Waterfront campaign. We were inspired by Democratic Convention delegates Arthur Murillo and Rick Hauptman, and especially fired up by Obama team leader Kierith Jones, who absolutely nailed how and why we in California can and must help the effort in the battleground states. You don’t have to leave town or donate any money! Sign on to your neighborhood team by visiting the OFA Dashboard.

WHEN: Tuesday, August 7, 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Heights

 

PHDC spent July 4th being super-patriotic: Registered voters in Dolores Park!

Then we had a potluck picnic and took in the  SF Mime Troupe‘s opening of its 53rd season: the premiere of For the Greater Good, or The Last Election, a musical satire about “true” American values.


Obama logoElection night found us returning to the back room at Connecticut Yankee, throwing ideas around for the upcoming presidential campaign and other future Club activities, and generally hanging out. Featured speaker was Kierith Jones, volunteer with Organizing For America, the campaign to reelect President Obama. She leads OFA’s SoMa-Potrero Hill neighborhood team.

Don’t forget to VOTE! – and please take the Club’s endorsements into account.

WHEN: Tuesday, June 5, 7pm
WHERE: Connecticut Yankee, 100 Connecticut St @ 17th St.

To continue the momentum of Earth Day, this meeting was all about the environment:

Jason Fried (left), Senior Program Officer, SF Local Agency Formation Commission, described CleanPowerSF, last heard about at PHDC in 2010. The City’s custom-tailored community choice aggregation program (CCA) is the culmination of a collaboration of City agencies to develop a cleaner, more renewable energy alternative for residences and businesses.

Evan Wynns (center), Executive Director of San Francisco Energy Co-op, talked about the new renewable power co-op aimed at raising awareness among all city residents, especially renters, about the benefits of green energy available to almost anyone: sustainable power, resulting in some profit for everyone who invests.

Adam Scow (right), California Campaigns Director, Food & Water Watch and an old friend of PHDC, returned to talk about water: the corporate water grab via a $50 billion pipeline to benefit Big Ag, and fracking going on right here in CA.

Jason Fried  Tuesday, May 1, 7:00pm    Evan WynnsAdam Scow


 

 

The agenda was jam-packed with appealing, enthusiastic candidates for San Francisco Democratic Central Committee, Assembly District 17. With 30 or so people running for 14 seats, it’s very hard to gain the required 60% for endorsement. We are grateful to all who showed up. We also were pleased to welcome David Levitt, Democrat running for U.S. Senate, and Dan Bernal, District Director for Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and to hear arguments for and against the two California and two San Francisco propositions on the ballot in June. It was a long meeting, 6:30 sharp to 9:30pm – and then we had to count the votes. See our full list of endorsements here.

WHEN: Tuesday, April 3, 6:30pm sharp
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Occupy at PHDC
Another terrific meeting! Heartfelt thanks to Joshua Clayton, Andy Gillis, Rachel Lyra Hospodar, Jane Smith, and Janice Suess, active participants in the various Working Groups within Occupy San Francisco, who engaged members and friends of PHDC in a spirited, eye-opening conversation. Find more photos on our Facebook page.

Also, after a presentation and Q&A with three representatives of the Free Muni for Youth Coalition, the Club voted to endorse that campaign.

WHEN: Tuesday, March 6, 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Member Mike Alonso of the Redistricting Task Force talked about the experiences of the Task Force and the public so far, fielded numerous questions and comments, and strongly urged audience members to show up at the Task Force community outreach meetings. Every meeting concerns redistricting the whole city, so come to meetings outside your own District. They want to hear from you, and they change their working draft maps after every meeting.

Scheduled Task Force Meetings:
Sat Feb 11, 2pm: Washington High School, 600 32nd Ave, District 1
Fri Feb 17, 3pm: Room 416, City Hall
Thurs Feb 23, 6pm: Old First Presbyterian Church, 1751 Sacramento St, D3
Thurs Mar 1, 6pm: Everett Middle School, 450 Church St, D8
Wed Mar 7, 6pm: Room 406, City Hall
Mon Mar 12, 6pm: West Portal School, 5 Lenox Way, D7
Sat Mar 17, 10am: Ella Hutch Community Center, 1050 McAllister St, D5
Thurs Mar 22, 6pm: United Irish Cultural Center, 2600 45th Ave, D4
Thurs March 29, 6pm, City Hall
Wed Apr 4, 6pm, Room 406, City Hall
Thurs Apr 5, 6pm, location TBD
Mon Apr 9, 6pm, location TBD
Wed Apr 11, 6pm, location TBD
Sat Apr 14, 10am, location TBD

Deadline to submit proposed city-wide maps: Friday, March 2, 2012
Deadline to submit proposed District/maps/recommendations: March 29, 2012

PHDC officers elected for 2012:
President: Joni Eisen
1st VP Membership: Monisha Mustapha
2nd VP Political Action: Emily Lowe
Secretary: J.R. Eppler
Treasurer: Hilary Cohen
Web Master: Rebecca Shearin

WHEN: Tuesday,February 7, 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Our first meeting of 2012 featured a lively panel about Ranked-Choice a.k.a. Instant Runoff Voting, in recent and future San Francisco elections. Experts on the subject discussed its strengths and weaknesses, what alternatives there are, and why we should – or shouldn’t – pursue them. There were of course lots of audience questions. Click here for some video coverage of the panel. And here’s another video. Click here for photos by Linda Post.

Panelists:
Jason Benlevi, tech industry veteran and author of Too Much Magic, who opposes it
Steven Hill, author and political reformer who led the 2002 campaign to pass instant-runoff voting in San Francisco
Tony Kelly, political activist who ran for Supervisor under the system in 2010 and still supports it
Clay Shentrup, Director, Center for Election Science, who wants to replace it

Moderator: John Wildermuth, San Francisco Chronicle Staff Writer

Nominations for 2012 officers (election to be held in February) are open.

WHEN: Tuesday, January 3, 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

DruidsStonehengePotrero Boosters and PHDC, together again: HOLIDAY PARTY! Come celebrate the season with your neighbors. After a rather successful collaboration on the Mayoral Debate, the two clubs are joining forces again.

Eat, drink and be merry, at least for a couple hours. There will be savories and sweets, wine and other holiday goodies from Axis Café. Renew your PHDC membership for the next year, and consider joining the Boosters as well. And you are welcome to bring friends who may be interested in joining either club. See you there!

WHEN: Sunday, Dec 11th, 3:30 to 6:30pm
WHERE: Axis Café, 1201 8th St at 16th St

What better way to spend Day of the Dead than to contemplate Death to the Mega-Banks? Too big to fail? Uh-uh. Too big to exist. Just in time for Bank Transfer Day, PHDC presents a panel discussion on how to let your money work for the good of the community, instead of for the benefit of a mega-bank’s corporate profits. Representatives from a community bank and two credit unions will explain the differences, and answer your questions.

SmallHangerThe election is November 8th. Find out at the meeting how you can help PHDC’s endorsed candidates Get Out The Vote!

WHEN: Tuesday, November 1st, 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Dennis Herrera for Mayor, David Onek for District Attorney, and Chris Cunnie for Sheriff, plus Ken Tray of UESF for Yes on A and No on H came by to touch base, to thank the Club for its endorsement, and to let us know how we can help their campaigns. We previewed our door hanger and took signups for precinct-walking and Potrero Hill Festival tabling. We revisited the Sharp Park Golf Course issue, but this time, the discussion was strictly limited – unlike the out-of-control Aug 2 meeting (scroll down for info), at which the vote was tabled so members could have time to learn more. The motion to endorse Supervisor Avalos’s legislation to restore Sharp Park passed. The meeting ended with an update from Megan Hamilton, aide to Supervisor Cohen, who was still in a BOS meeting.

WHEN: Tuesday, October 4th, 7pm
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

Mayor
DENNIS HERRERA

District Attorney
DAVID ONEK

Sheriff
CHRIS CUNNIE

San Francisco Propositions

A – YES School Bonds
B – YES Road Paving and Street Safety Bonds
C – No position City Pension and Health Care Benefits
D – NO City Pension Benefits
E – No position Amending or Repealing Legislative Initiative Ordinances and Declarations of Policy
F – No position Campaign Consultant Ordinance
G – YES Sales Tax
H – NO School District Student Assignment

DistrictAttorneySEPT 6th at 6:30pm: CANDIDATES. The District Attorney candidate forum featured (above, left to right) George Gascón, Sharmin Bock, Bill Fazio, and David Onek. Their submitted questionnaires are here. PHDC Secretary, attorney J.R. Eppler, moderated. Photo by Jean Bogiages. There were then separate presentations, each followed by Q&A, from candidates for Sheriff, Chris Cunnie, Ross Mirkarimi, and Paul Miyamoto. Members in good standing voted that night on endorsements for Mayor, District Attorney, and Sheriff. All qualified candidates were on the ballot. To be endorsed, a candidate had to get 60% of the votes cast. As we have done since the Club formed in 2007, we used ranked-choice voting.

PHDC’s endorsed candidates are:

Mayor – DENNIS HERRERA
District Attorney – DAVID ONEK
Sheriff – CHRIS CUNNIE

TUES. SEPT 13th at 6:30pm: PROPOSITIONS. Speakers pro and con, plus Q&A, for the eight measures appearing on the November 8th ballot. Members in good standing voted on endorsing them that night. To be endorsed, a ballot measure had to get 60% of the votes cast.

The location of both meetings was the Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St.

MayoralDebateIt really was a lively and informative evening! All seven candidates were in top form. There were four rounds of candidates asking questions of other candidates, plus opening and closing statements. Each round had a particular subject:
• Creating Careers for San Franciscans (Jobs, the Economy)
• Preventing Cuts to Our Services (Budget, Transit, Parks)
• Keeping Families Here (Housing, Schools)
• Supporting Livable Neighborhoods (Health, Safety)
Candidates had 3 bonus minutes each, which they used when they felt compelled to give a longer answer, to rebut someone else’s words, or to lengthen a closing statement. The debate was co-sponsored with Potrero Boosters Neighborhood Association. Both Linda Post and Cris Rys shot videos of the proceedings. Find Linda’s here, and Cris’s here.

Participating candidates were (above, left to right) Terry Baum, Bevan Dufty, Michela Alioto-Pier, Dennis Herrera, David Chiu, Joanna Rees, John Avalos. Photo by Linda Post. Boosters President Tony Kelly moderated. Find out more about the candidates:
Candidate questionnaires as submitted
Candidates’ responses to each question side-by-side (recommend opening in Firefox).

At the end of the evening, audience members who thought they could answer the question, “Who won the debate?” voted in a straw poll. Here are the the results:
Dennis Herrera – 30%
Terry Baum – 17%
David Chiu – 17%
John Avalos – 16%
Bevan Dufty – 10%
Joanna Rees – 6%
Michela Alioto-Pier – 4%

When: Tuesday, August 30, 6:30 – 9pm.
Where: International Studies Academy, 655 De Haro St

Neal DesaiMichelle MyersDawn Kamalanathan (below) of SF Recreation & Parks duked it out with Neal Desai (left) of National Parks Conservation Association and Michelle Myers (right) of Sierra Club SF Bay Chapter over the future of Sharp Park Golf Course. Members tabled a vote on the issue, needing more information. Here are the links to information received:

• From the Sierra Club and Wild Equity Institute:
Summary fact-sheet of the campaign and what the legislation they are crafting (with Supervisor Avalos and the City Attorney’s office) would do
Executive summary of all the studies, reports, and articles that have been published on the issue
• From SF Public Golf Alliance (absent a response from Rec & Parks, a member of the audience sent this): Frequently-Asked Questions Memo
Dawn Kamalanathan
Supervisor Malia Cohen unfortunately had a family emergency and had to reschedule. Tom Gallagher presented a resolution in support of Barbara Lee’s Afghanistan withdrawal bill, which passed unanimously. We’re looking forward to our August 14th Members Party & Auction. Rebecca Shearin photos.

July 4th “Meeting”

June 24th, 2011

Kate & J.R. being patriotic,  July 4th in Dolores Park

Kate & J.R. being patriotic, July 4th in Dolores Park


Our July meeting was a field trip. We gathered in Dolores Park on July 4th with the patriotic purpose of protecting democracy itself. How? By registering voters; by campaigning for the California DISCLOSE Act: Democracy Is Strengthened by Casting Light On Spending in Elections; and by supporting the SF Mime Troupe in their 52nd year of smart, satirical musical theater. We had the old ironing board as our base of operations, moved among the crowd with our petitions and voter registration materials, and then 8 of us stayed to enjoy the SF Mime Troupe show “2012 – The Musical!” and a fabulous potluck picnic. Activism should be fun! Photo by Scott Cole.

WHEN: Monday, July 4th, 12:30pm meet & register voters, 2pm picnic & show
WHERE: Dolores Park, Dolores in from 19th St

…and ultimately may lead to people growing their own. We got the whole picture from Food & Water Watch‘s Adam Scow‘s presentation, “Sowing the Seeds of a Fair Farm Bill” in Congress: regulation of the multinational corporations; supporting family farmers; increasing access to healthy food in urban communities. Then we bought it home with comments from various neighbors who source food locally and sell it, grow it themselves to eat or give away, or provide other resources for healthy eating and would-be urban farmers.FoodPolitics1FoodPolitics2

WHEN: Tuesday, June 7th, 6:45pm sign in & socialize, 7:00pm start
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

cahsr2Assemblymember Cathleen Galgiani (D-Merced County), a leader in promoting the development of California’s first-ever high-speed rail system, spoke about the project’s progress and challenges. Dominic Spaethling, California High-Speed Rail Authority Project Manager for the SF-San Jose corridor, addressed local aspects and impacts, and agreed to return with updates.

Further discussion of the Campaign for New Priorities, with Sandra Schwartz returning to answer questions, resulted in the Club’s endorsement of the Campaign’s principles.

Member also voted to endorse the CA DISCLOSE Act, legislation mandating that the public be informed who is really paying for political ads – clearly and unequivocally, on the ads themselves.

Jane Bernard-Powers, President of Democratic Women in Action, spoke about the Political Potpourri, a round-table discussion of women’s issues, scheduled for May 7th.

WHEN: Tuesday, May 3rd, 6:45pm sign in & socialize, 7:00pm start
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

At this month’s jam-packed meeting, Sandra Schwartz (below, left), Peace Education Coordinator at the American Friends Service Committee, introduced the Campaign for New Priorities, which involves ending pointless wars, cutting the defense budget and re-directing the funds to actual human needs. The Club will vote whether to endorse its principles at the May 3rd meeting.

Next, we were treated to an inspiring and dynamic presentation from Alysabeth Alexander (below, center), Political Action Chair of SEIU Local 1021, on the Fight for a Fair Economy for working families and the whole endangered middle class, in Wisconsin and closer to home.

Bill Barnes was quickly elected to fill the position of 1st VP/Membership Chair, vacated when Isaac Bowers moved to DC.

Supervisor Malia Cohen (below, right) then joined us to discuss the latest at City Hall. Moreover, she has graciously agreed to show up quarterly to fill us in. All speakers’ presentations included typically lively Q&A.

Sandra SchwartzAlysabethAlexanderMalia Cohen

Rebecca Shearin photos.

Part of the Governor’s proposed budget completely eliminates community Redevelopment Agencies. Have these entities been essential for job creation and community revitalization, or are they, as Governor Brown calls them, “futile”? How have they worked – or not – in the past? Is there an alternate plan if the Governor’s budget passes and these agencies disappear? A lively discussion with Arc Ecology Executive Director Saul Bloom, housing activist Calvin Welch, SF Redevelopment Agency Deputy Executive Director Olson Lee, and California Professional Firefighters Communications Director Carroll Wills, was quite informative, ultimately resulting in more questions than answers. Moderator was SF Chronicle political reporter Marisa Lagos. For coverage of the event, see Sarah Phelan’s article in the Bay Guardian.

WHEN: Tuesday, March 1st, 6:45PM sign in and socialize, 7:15PM event start
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Hts

PHpowerplantJoshua Arce, Executive Director of non-profit civil rights org Brightline Defense Project, played an active role alongside intrepid community members in the long-drawn-out campaign to get rid of the dirty Potrero power plant. He discussed the campaign and acknowledged the activists who were fighting for years before he joined them.

The results of the last meeting’s brainstorming program ideas & issues for the coming year, compiled and organized, were put up on the stage. People added new ideas and stuck dots by their top choices.

Erin Miller, the new Project Manager of SFMTA’s Eastern Neighborhoods Transportation Implementation Planning Study (EN TRIPS), gave a brief introduction and overview of the plan to minimize transportation impacts of anticipated growth, and invited people to a town hall meeting the following evening.

At the end of the meeting, voting members elected 2011 Club Officers.

Happy 2011! PHDC’s first event of the year was a successful & fun joint meeting with our D10 cohorts from the recently-formed Harvey Matthews Bayview Hunters Point Democratic Club. To begin, the crowd broke up into small groups (photo below by Linda Post) to brainstorm program ideas for the coming year. Many issues came up; we’ll organize the data soon and report to both clubs.
PHDC1-11Mtg
2010 Census data have been published, and redistricting looms in San Francisco. Three veterans of the last redistricting wars, Espanola Jackson, Tony Kelly, and Ron Miguel, shared their thoughts and experiences.

Both clubs took nominations for 2011 officers – elections to be held later.

WHEN: Tuesday, January 4th at 7PM
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Hts

MaliaMtg12-10Congratulations to Malia Cohen, who, after a wildly unpredictable race against 20 other candidates and many rounds of ranked-choice vote tallying, has been named the winner! We were pleased to welcome her as a special guest.

Before Supervisor-elect Cohen arrived, the meeting began with processing the recent election – but time did not permit more than a rather spirited discussion of the merits and faults of the ranked-choice system itself. Plans for the coming year will be a topic for the beginning of next month’s meeting. Thanks to those who brought food items for our annual collection for the San Francisco Food Bank!

WHEN: Tuesday, December 7th at 7PM
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St

DoorHanger250pxlsWe invited candidates and reps from the various Club-endorsed campaigns to the Neighborhood House with literature & campaign swag, to say a few words and answer questions. It was another chance to get to know some candidates and issues better. We introduced the cool blue door hanger (photo at right by Linda Post) designed by Rebecca Shearin, listing PHDC’s endorsements. It’s being walked by volunteers all over the Hill and Dogpatch.

Also, on the 9th anniversary of the Afghanistan war, some of us wrote letters urging Speaker Pelosi to insist on a clear timetable for U. S. military withdrawal.

We’re looking forward to tabling at the Potrero Hill Festival Saturday, October 16th. See you there.

On Tuesday, Sept. 7, Club members voted on some state propositions and all candidates on the Nov 2nd ballot. Candidates for Board of Education, Community College Board, and Assessor-Recorder spoke briefly and answered questions.

In order to be endorsed, a candidate must receive 60% of votes cast. In just two rounds of hand-counted instant-runoff voting, Tony Kelly won PHDC’s endorsement for District 10 Supervisor.

Complete list of all Club endorsements is here.

The first two Tuesday evenings in September were entirely dedicated to speakers and member voting, at the Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro.

Tuesday, Sept. 14, 6:30PM: We had speakers pro & con, with Q&A, for State Propositions 19, 20, 22, and 27, and all local Propositions: AA through N. Complete list of endorsements for the November election is here.

The Neighborhood House was definitely the place to be Monday, August 2, and Tuesday, August 3, when both evenings were devoted to candidates vying for the office of Supervisor for District 10. It was standing room only the first night, and a full house the next – a total of about 250 people (a record for the Club, now in its 4th year of existence). Moderated by Keith Goldstein, President of Potrero Hill Association of Merchants and Businesses, the events gave the candidates a chance to highlight their strengths and show their differences.

Candidates who appeared, with website links if available:
Monday, August 2: Malia Cohen, Kristine Enea, Nyese Joshua, Steve Moss, Eric Smith, Lynette Sweet, Stephen Weber
Tuesday, August 3: Isaac Bowers, Espanola Jackson, Chris Jackson, Tony Kelly, DeWitt Lacy, Geoffrea Morris, Diane Wesley Smith, Marlene Tran

You can see video segments of both nights by Linda Post on You Tube here and here.

Complete videos of both nights by Joseph Schaller are here, where you can see the whole 2 nights by clicking on “Play all videos” near the top of the page, or pick and choose among the segments.

Photos from Tuesday (top) and Monday, by Linda Post:
Aug2ForumCands
Aug2ForumAud

Click here to see more photos.

Gina Abrescy/3 Energies Massage & Bodywork • Aperto • ARCH Drafting Supplies Inc • Bell & Trunk Flowers • Caffè La Stazione • Jo Cangelosi • Chat’s of San Francisco • Chiotras Grocery • Collage Gallery • Connecticut Yankee • Cup of Blues • Joni Eisen • Kristine Enea • Farley’s • Goat Hill Pizza • The Good Life Grocery • Horatius • Peter Linenthal • Moshi Moshi Sushi & Grill • Mr and Mrs Miscellaneous • Pawtrero Hill Bath House & Feed Co. • Pera • Photography by Emily Payne • Post & Parcel, Inc • Potrero Chiropractors & Acupuncture • Quince Spa • The Ramp • Rocketfish • Salazar & Heath Inc • San Francisco Center for the Book • Marlene Tran • Yield Wine Bar

At our last meeting, Public Defender Jeff Adachi (right), jadachirecently named Public Defender of the Year by the Public Defenders Association, presented his ideas on how to alleviate the city budget shortfall by reforming the pension system.

Click here to watch 2-part video by Linda Post.

Our May meeting ran too late to vote on defeating the November water bonds, so Adam Scow (below left) of Food & Water Watch was back with a brief review before the vote: NO on the water bonds.ascow

Two more candidates for District 10 Supervisor introduced themselves: Chris Jackson and Marlene Tran. We discussed various other items of Club business and future fun. Photos by Rebecca Shearin.

WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro St @ Southern Heights
WHEN: Tuesday, June 1st, at 7:00PM

The Club revisited and further explored three issues that we have examined in the past, ranging from within the district to statewide – and of course they’re all related.

In District 10, there has been ongoing concern about the environmental impacts of development in the Bayview. We continued that discussion, this time with members of POWER (People Organized to Win Employment Rights) Jaron Browne and Nyese Joshua.

The citizens of San Francisco are moving toward theSolarCity ability to pool their purchasing power to buy electricity from more sustainable sources – unless PG&E succeeds in effectively wiping out all competition with the deceptive Prop 16. “Community Choice Aggregation” is now known as CleanPowerSF, and was described by Caroline Teng of SF LAFCo.

Then, following up on our panel discussion of the California water crisis, Adam Scow of Food & Water Watch gave reasons to flush the state water bond on the November ballot. however, it was to late to vote on an endorsement either way, so Adam will return June 1st.

At the beginning of the meeting, Alex Tourk from Why Tuesday introducing the idea of adding Saturday as an election day, and in the middle, Isaac Bowers and Rev. Nina Pickerrell, candidates for District 10 Supervisor, introduced themselves.

WHEN: Tuesday, May 4th, at 7:00PM
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Heights

The members of Potrero Hill Democratic Club voted at the April 6th meeting to have the opportunity to hear all candidates for the SF Democratic County Central Committee in District 13, not just the ones who have never been elected to public office. All candidates were therefore invited to schedule an appearance. Twenty-three candidates were heard from, 21 in person and 2 through surrogates. The following candidates passed the 60% threshold and got the club’s endorsement: Keith Baraka, David Campos, David Chiu, Hope Johnson, Rafael Mandelman, Aaron Peskin, Debra Walker.

We thank all the candidates for taking the time to speak to us, and for their dedication to making a difference in San Francisco.

WHEN: Monday, April 19th, at 7:00PM
WHERE: Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 De Haro @ Southern Heights

Speakers on local and state propositions included State Senator Leland Yee and SF Board of Supervisors President David Chiu, Sierra Club’s John Rizzo, and Planning Commission President Ron Miguel. We had appearances by candidate for Insurance Commissioner Hector De La Torre, candidate for Superintendent of Public Instruction Larry Aceves, and a campaign rep for Superintendent of Public Instruction candidate Tom Torlakson. Candidates for the SF Democratic Central Committee spoke to us, but the membership voted to postpone voting on that race to a later meeting, to which the Club will invite all 30 candidates. Here are our endorsements so far for the June 8, 2010 Statewide Direct Primary Election.

India Basin India Basin is the waterfront neighborhood just south of Potrero Hill which extends from Heron’s Head Park (formerly Pier 98) to Hunters Point Shipyard, and from the hilltop to the shore. This shoreline remains largely undeveloped, and the neighborhood underserved. At our March 2nd meeting, Kristine Enea from the India Basin Neighborhood Association presented its Shoreline Community Vision, illustrated with brochures, but technical difficulties prevented the showing of slides.

The endorsement process for the June 8th Primary Election kicked off for PHDC with reps from two campaigns for Attorney General: Kamala Harris and Chris Kelly. Following an introductory talk by City Attorney Dennis Herrera, we held a judicial forum of the seven candidates for the two contested seats on San Francisco Superior Court: Linda Colfax, Harry Dorfman, Roderick McLeod, Robert Retana for Seat 6; Dan Dean, Michael Nava, incumbent Richard Ulmer for Seat 15.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

SactoSmallJohn deCastro of Repair California discussed the campaign for what some consider to be the only way to make sweeping changes to state government and wrestle our state back from special interests: a “limited” Constitutional Convention, only focused on governance issues. Update: Due to lack of funds, the campaign has withdrawn its initiatives. StarrKing

Starr King Openspace is a serpentine grassland habitat which literally belongs to all residents of Potrero Hill. Caroline Bird, President of the Board of the newly-revamped nonprofit, and Andie Grace, another board member, described the recent changes and opportunities.

Three more District 10 Supervisor candidate introductions, amending Club Bylaws, nomination and election of 2010 Officers, and various announcements and updates rounded out a very full agenda.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

CA Majority Rule

January 4th, 2010

State CapitolThat is, bring it back! California is the only state in the nation which requires a 2/3 vote for both revenue and budget. Just one sentence will fix that: “All legislative action on revenue and budget must be determined by majority rule.” That, in essence, is the ballot proposition for November 2010 submitted to the Attorney General by author and UC Berkeley linguistics Professor George Lakoff.

Sonoma State University philosophy Professor Teed Rockwell of the CA Majority Rule campaign spoke to us about bringing sanity back to the state legislative process. The Club endorsed the initiative. If you would like to sign the San Francisco petition to get it on the November ballot, please email [email protected] .

Also, one more candidate for Supervisor in District 10 introduced herself and spoke briefly.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

Potluck & Planning Party

December 1st, 2009

ZahraSamir copy
This meeting we had no particular agenda other than tossing around ideas for the coming year. But we had a surprise visit from Saul Bloom of Arc Ecology, asking the membership to sign on to a letter to Mayor Newsom, requesting an extension of the 45-day public comment period on the Draft Environmental Impact Report for the Hunters Point Shipyard/Candlestick Point project to 90 days. We voted to do so. We also ate, drank, schmoozed and bought some of the new 94107 t-shirts, iwhich include youth sizes (worn by Zahra and Samir at left).

Members and guests brought food or drink to share, and 98 lbs of food donated to the Food Bank. Thanks everyone for a gratifying ending to our third year!

Tuolumne tributaryAs California endures a third consecutive year of drought, PHDC hosted a spirited panel discussion about WATER: what the result of the closed-door water bill negotiations in Sacramento might mean to cities north and 52south, farms in the middle, fish and other wildlife; what we as individuals can do to conserve and protect this most precious resource;  and much more. Our panel of experts, who explained, advocated, argued, and enlightened, were Jennifer Clary, water policy and legislative analyst for Clean Water Action; Adam Scow, senior organizer at Food and Water Watch; Laura Spanjian, Assistant General Manager of External Affairs for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission; Jessie Raeder, Bay Area organizer with the Tuolumne River Trust. Moderator was PHDC member Loretta Lynch, former president of the California Public Utilities Commission. We thank the moderator, panelists, and audience participants for an altogether excellent program!

Meeting Audio and Photos »

MarkL49At our October meeting, close to 80 people came to hear Senator Mark Leno (left) discuss health care in the City,  the state (SB 810), and the nation; his work as Chair of the Senate Public Safety Committee; budget and water issues. He thanked the Club for our letter about his bill SB 792 – even though it was a letter of opposition. He told us he took our concerns seriously and tried to address them (see links below to handouts on SB 792).  Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (right), also Chair of the Public Safety Committee (Assembly), answered questions on equally pressing issues, including AB 390, his bill to legalize marijuana, and the helipad at SF General. We met three more candidates for District 10 Supervisor (our first six were at the August meeting – more to come): Marie Franklin, Kristine Enea, and Dr. James Calloway.

Senator Leno brought three handouts to the meeting:
SB 792 Fact Sheet
State Parks Exchange Map Overall
SB 792 Sierra Club California Letter ( neutral )

Meeting Audio and Photos »

votebuttonOur September meeting was about elections particular and general. There were speakers for and against the five local propositions on the November 3rd ballot, and the two candidates, incumbent City Treasurer José Cisneros and incumbent City Attorney Dennis Herrera, seeking endorsement. Also, Alan Dechert, founder and President of Open Voting Consortium, discussed open-source voting: what it is, the problems it solves, and how it can be implemented.

The ballot issues were more nuanced than one would have thought, with plausible arguments on both sides. In fact, only one ballot measure gained the 60% vote necessary for Club endorsement: Yes on Prop E: (Limiting) Advertising on City Property. Both candidates earned our endorsement, and while we were at it, we unanimously passed a Public Option health care resolution.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

PHDC’s August meeting covered issues at all levels of government. First on the agenda was a national issue: Members passed a resolution, presented by antiwar activist Tom Gallagher, urging Speaker Pelosi to co-sponsor HR 2404 requiring the Secretary of Defense to submit a report to Congress by year’s end outlining the US exit strategy for military forces in Afghanistan.

Next, San Francisco Assessor-Recorder Phil Ting cited a key reason California continues to fall behind: Proposition 13, which affords vast property tax loopholes for California’s largest corporate property owners while  shifting the tax burden to individual homeowners, and dramatically reducing California’s overall revenue for vital services. Mr. Ting presented ideas for closing the loophole, inviting people to join his campaign.

Then on to San Francisco politics: This month we started our year-long effort to give candidates for District 10 Supervisor a chance to meet with their would-be constituents. We welcomed 6 candidates in District 10 to have the floor for brief introductions; we will be doing many more such meetings in the coming months. The election is in November, 2010.

For an article (San Francisco FYI) about the meeting, and more photos, click HERE.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

ScaleMore than seventy people joined in yet another lively and informative discussion. Our panel invigorated and inspired us: Linda Leu, organizer for Health Access and the Health Care for America Now campaign, and also a volunteer with Organizing for America, formerly Obama for America; longtime progressive activist Don Bechler, chair of Single Payer Now; Justin Davis, M.D., Potrero Hill primary- and urgent-care physician; Catherine Dodd, RN, Mayor Newsom’s Deputy Chief of Staff overseeing Health, Human Services, Aging Services and Children Youth and Family Services.

Take action:
July 9th rally at noon with MoveOn.org for a strong public option, at Senator Feinstein’s office.
July 11th health care canvass in the neighborhood with Organizing for America.
Single Payer Now has classes on single-payer, and many more opportunities for activism.

More about the meeting: an article by Bonnie Baron in the Potrero View, and a story by Linda Post on San Francisco FYI.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

JeffAdachiFollowing a brief business meeting and further discussion of Lennar’s plans for Bayview/Hunters Point/Candlestick open space and development, the club welcomed Jeff Adachi, California’s only publicly elected Public Defender. See our calendar for details.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

LeahPimentelFirst, Leah Pimentel (right) of GRID Alternatives described their program, which provides qualifying lower-income homeowners with photovoltaic systems to produce clean electricity – without increasing monthly household expenses.
ArthurF
Next, Saul Bloom, Executive Director of Arc Ecology, and Arthur Feinstein (left) of the Sierra Club explained their alternate concepts to Lennar’s plans for Bayview/Hunters Point/Candlestick open space and development.

Finally, Quintin Mecke, Communications Director for Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, and David Beaupre of the Port of San Francisco sought and won the Club’s support of AB 1176, to enable adequate financing for the cleanup, restoration and development of Pier 70.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

SophiebyBrancaThe statewide Special Election is Tuesday, May 19th. Speakers for our April 7th meeting were District 10 Supervisor Sophie Maxwell (right) to discuss potential local effects of the budget, plus Rick Wathen of California Teachers Association and Beyond Chron Managing Editor Paul Hogarth (below, left and right), both of whom spoke in detail about the six propositions, for and against respectively.

RickPaulbyBranca3Club endorsement votes were tallied at the end of the meeting: NO on 1A, 1C, 1D, and 1E, and no position on 1B and 1F.

There was also an update by Chris Jackson of the SF Labor Council, on Bayview/Hunters Point development plans as they pertain to SB 792.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

Community Choices

March 3rd, 2009

What do Community Choice Aggregation and rebuilding Potrero Terrace & Annex have in common? They both are in the planning stages, and both are seeking community input to make the ideas become reality.

Laura Hahn of the Sierra Club Bay Area chapter spoke about the former, and Ben Golvin of Equity Community Builders spoke about the latter.

Laura Hahn with the Sierra Club

Laura Hahn with the Sierra Club


Ben Golvin with Equity Community Builders Photos: Quint King

Ben Golvin with Equity Community Builders Photos: Quint King

Meeting Audio and Photos »

Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi      Photo: Quint King

Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi Photo: Quint King

Supervisor Mirkarimi, despite feeling under the weather, gave an energetic presentation highlighting some of his main interests, then fielded plenty of audience questions. We heard from Jean Cosby of the Neighborhood House about their upcoming fundraiser, of which PHDC is a sponsor, and also elected officers for 2009.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

Prop 8 aftermath & MORE

January 6th, 2009

Anti-Prop 8 activist Dave Chandler spoke eloquently and movingly about his family’s experiences before and after the civil rights disaster Prop 8. The ad hoc committee on peaceful neighborhoods described its first meeting about research and potential collaborations to help make our neighborhoods safer. We tabled the District 10 Supervisor candidate speculation – it’s way too early. Members approved a letter to Speaker Pelosi in support of Clean and Fair Elections (full public financing) for congressional campaigns. Officers were nominated; there’s still time for more nominations at the beginning of our next meeting, February 3rd. Old business, new business, refreshments & cameraderie, at the usual time and place.

Dave Chandler against Prop 8 Photo: Quint King

Dave Chandler against Prop 8 Photo: Quint King

Meeting Audio and Photos »

dec_meeting_shot1

President-elect Obama, you’ve got the job! Now the real work begins. What do we expect from the Obama administration? Let’s savor the victory, but make sure our new President hears from us. At the meeting, we also heard about Greenpeace’s plans for the new administration, as well as the Fair Elections Now Act in Congress. Details on our calendar.

Anna Wagner from Greenpeace Photos: Rebecca Shearin

Anna Wagner from Greenpeace Photos: Rebecca Shearin

Meeting Audio and Photos »

Support Our Endorsed Campaigns

November 4th, 2008

Let’s make sure the Club’s endorsements actually mean something. Please donate your time, energy or or other resources to our endorsed campaigns. Links to many of those campaigns are in the sidebar at right. Then celebrate at Election Night Parties!

NoOn4-1

On October 18th at the annual Potrero Hill Festival, Club members campaign (and sell T-shirts!) as neighbors and friends enjoy a beautiful day on top of our Hill. More photos here.

ObamaMcCainThe time: 5:30. The place: the venerable Connecticut Yankee. This time our first-Tuesday-of-the-month meeting coincided with the second Presidential Debate. We ate, drank and made fun of certain statements. And connected with some reps of the campaigns we’ve endorsed.

The next first-Tuesday is ELECTION DAY. No PHDC meeting. Get out there and make a difference, then celebrate your efforts at a party!

Our September 2nd meeting, starting at 6:30PM instead of 7:00, featured local candidates for Board of Education and Community College Board (read the candidates’ questionnaires here), as well as speakers on four contentious ballot measures. Endorsements from that meeting have now been made.

Prop A (SF General Hospital Bonds) PRO by Dr Jeff Crutchfield & others

Prop A (SF General Hospital Bonds) PRO by Dr Jeff Crutchfield & others


Props C (City Employees on Charter Boards), E (Signatures Required for Recall), F (City Elections in Even-Numbered Years) PRO by Jake McGoldrick

Props C (City Employees on Charter Boards), E (Signatures Required for Recall), F (City Elections in Even-Numbered Years) PRO by Jake McGoldrick

On September 9th, we considered the other 18 local ballot measures. Those endorsements will be published by Sept 17th.

For MP3 Audio and Photos of the Sept 2nd meeting,
click HERE.

For MP3 Audio and Photos of the Sept 9th meeting,
click HERE. More info about local ballot measures can be found at SFGov.

state_cap_imageThe ballot for the November 4th Presidential election will be a whopper. Tuesday, August 4th was our first endorsement meeting for that election. We had outside speakers pro and con for the more controversial state propositions, and club members gave overviews and recommendations on other measures. Members had a week to turn in their ballots; results are on the right. A useful reference for anyone pondering how to vote is the Secretary of State’s website.

The Honorable Quentin Kopp former SF Supervisor and State Senator, Chair of High Speed Rail Authority

The Honorable Quentin Kopp former SF Supervisor and State Senator, Chair of High Speed Rail Authority

City candidates and ballot measures will be dealt with at TWO September endorsement meetings, Sept 2nd (local candidates) and Sept 9th (local propositions).

Meeting Audio and Photos »

Revisiting Proposition 13

July 1st, 2008

At our July 1st meeting, back in our usual room at the Neighborhood House, we featured speakers from the Proposition 13 Reform Task Force, a group concerned about the continuing adverse impact of Proposition 13 on California government. They drafted a resolution as a prelude to passing a ballot initiative to change California’s property tax laws by removing non-residential commercial property from Proposition 13′s tax shelter. They say that this change would produce billions of dollars in revenue that could be used for local needs.

Photo: Rebecca Shearin

Photo: Rebecca Shearin

Meeting Audio and Photos »

By all means help get out the vote for your favorite candidate or campaign. Then grab a drink, salad or dessert to share and head on over to 824B Carolina – behind the Neighborhood House this time, since our regular venue is being used as a polling place. Pizza’s on us.

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Special guest Barry Hermanson will speak about the need to reduce military spending. More details about the meeting are on our calendar.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

These were the topics covered at our May 6th meeting. Below, Superdelegate Alicia Wang shares insights about Party machinations.

Photo: Rebecca Shearin

Photo: Rebecca Shearin

Meeting Audio and Photos »

At our meeting Tuesday, April 1st, there were 8 local and 2 state ballot measures to consider. These included two pairs of competing measures: one about development in the Bayview, the other about eminent domain in California. There were candidates to consider, too; State Senator isn’t the only contest on the ballot. At the Neighborhood House for speakers and Q&A, members and guests enjoyed an informative evening of civic engagement. Check out the Club’s endorsements.

Photo: Rebecca Shearin

Photo: Rebecca Shearin

Meeting Audio and Photos »

March 4th was the date, The Nabe was the place to be when Police Commissioner Joe Alioto Veronese, Assemblyman Mark Leno, Senator Carole Migden and former Assemblyman Joe Nation vied for your vote. Philip DeAndrade moderated this leg of California’s hottest legislative race. Around 90 people showed up – our biggest event yet. Click on Blog at left to read an article about the event in the Bay Area Reporter.

Photo: Rebecca Wilkowski

Photo: Rebecca Wilkowski

Members voted as follows: First round IRV, counting 1st choices only: Leno 21. Migden 14, Nation 3, No Endorsement 2, total 40 votes cast. 2nd round: Eliminating the votes for Nation and No Endorsement, those voters’ second choices added 1 each to Leno and Migden, and 2 to Alioto Veronese (one voter had no 2nd choice). Since Alioto Veronese, like Nation and No Endorsement, got less than 15% of the vote, his votes were eliminated.

Final count: Leno 22, Migden 15. 24 votes were needed to make the 60% endorsement threshold. So the Club’s official position is: No Position. You can still click on the candidates’ photos at upper right, except for the one who dropped out, to go to their web sites.

Meeting Audio and Photos »

Fan - Pleated 2Our regular February meeting coincided with the Primary Election in California – and 23 other states! After voting, members, neighbors & friends gathered for a potluck at the Nabe to watch the returns. We also elected officers for 2008. Below are scenes from the event, which was held in the downstairs game room; our regular meeting room was being used, of course, as a polling place.



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Photos: Linda Post

On January 8th, 2008, the Club held its endorsement meeting for local and state propositions that will be on the February 5th California Presidential Primary ballot. Here are our endorsements. Read about what the speakers had to say in the minutes of the meeting.

PHDC Endorses John Edwards

December 4th, 2007

With such a strong field of candidates, no one thought our Club would be able to endorse just one. Twenty-seven members (out of 42 eligible) cast their ballots using ranked choice voting at our December 4th Party Endorsement Party. After several rounds Edwards remained the front runner, exceeding the 60% threshold when he and Barack Obama were the only two left standing. (Interested members are encouraged to volunteer by contacting the SF John Edwards campaign). Below are scenes from the event, including the reps from six presidential campaigns.

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Party Endorsement Party

December 4th, 2007

flag-1The California Presidential Primary is February 5, 2008, just two months away. Please join us for an exciting and festive Tuesday night meeting, at 7PM at the Neighborhood House. Speakers have been invited from all eight Democratic Primary campaigns to present and take questions. Written questions are being accepted now. Club members’ votes will be tallied at the end of the evening. For more details, please check our calendar.

Oil Spill Cleanup

November 11th, 2007

If you want to help clean up the disastrous Cosco Busan oil spill on San Francisco Bay, here is where you can find out how to get the necessary training and updates.

Our meeting night falls on Election Day. Our club strongly endorsed a NO vote on Measure H, which the San Francisco Planning Department estimates will put 20,000 new vehicles on our city’s streets. That means more traffic, more air pollution, and the problems associated with both: more danger for pedestrians, childhood asthma, and global warming. Now let’s back our endorsement with action. For details of what you can do on Election Day and the days leading up to it, see our calendar.

Kamala Harris Speaks to PHDC

October 2nd, 2007

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District Attorney Kamala Harris was the featured speaker at our October 2nd regular meeting. Photo by Rebecca Wilkowski.









AndrewMcGuireAndrew McGuire, Executive Director of Health Care for All – California, spoke at our September 4th meeting, describing the difference between the plans getting all the press and real, single-payer, universal health care. After his presentation and a lively Q & A, the membership voted to endorse Sheila Kuehl’s bill. Now that the Club has endorsed SB 840, we can actively promote the campaign to get it passed. To learn how you can get involved, click here.

Mark Leno Speaks to PHDC

August 7th, 2007

Members listened intently to Assemblyman Leno’s discussion on a range of topics from our state budget deficit to the prison crisis. More details can be found in the August minutes.
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Assemblyman Leno represents the 13th District, which includes Potrero Hill. One of the first openly gay men ever elected to the Assembly, he currently chairs the Assembly Appropriations Committee, which oversees all bills with a fiscal impact on the state. While in the Assembly, Leno has fought for better schools and access to higher education, a cleaner and sustainable environment, universal affordable and quality health care, improved transportation, renewable energy, Clean Money, safer streets, and equal rights for all Californians. He is challenging Senator Carole Migden (speaker at our May meeting) for the District 3 State Senate seat.

Alyssa, Pat, Kasha, Rebecca, Lauren, Abby

Alyssa, Pat, Kasha, Rebecca, Lauren, Abby


In July, the first Tuesday fell on the 3rd – the eve of Independence Day. PHDemClub showed real patriotism on July 6th, 7th and 8th by registering 38 voters at the opening performances of the San Francisco Mime Troupe in Dolores Park.

Helipad Discussion

June 5th, 2007

Speakers from both sides of a contentious issue debated the proposed helipad at San Francisco General Hospital, making for a lively evening.

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Details of the meeting and more information relating to the helipad are in the June 2007 minutes.

The San Francisco General Hospital Helipad website is: www.dph.sf.ca.us/helipad
The Helipad opponents’ website is:
www.stophelipad.org

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