Steven T. Jones

Motorists fight back in "transit-first" San Francisco

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Believing that they’re somehow discriminated against on the streets of San Francisco, a new political coalition of motorists, conservatives, and neighborhood NIMBYs yesterday [Mon/7] turned in nearly twice the signatures they need to qualify the “Restore Transportation Balance in San Francisco” initiative for the November ballot.Read more »

Taxing speculators

Rival housing measures debated in City Hall, previewing high-stakes battles at the ballot

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steve@sfbg.com

Political tensions over evictions, displacement, real estate speculation, and rapidly rising housing costs in San Francisco are likely to heat up through the summer and autumn as a trio of November ballot measures are debated and combated by what's expected to be a flood of campaign cash from developers and other real estate interests.Read more »

Jury rejects civil claim of Oscar Grant III's imprisoned father

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When a jury in San Francisco this week rejected the civil lawsuit claims of Oscar Grant Jr., the imprisoned father of Oscar Grant III — who was shot to death by then-BART Police Officer Johannes Mehserle on the platform of Fruitvale Station on New Year’s Day 2009 — were jurors exhibiting a bias against convicted criminals?Read more »

Guardian on the move: Into the mall, under new management

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There were a couple of big changes for the Bay Guardian this week. We and our sister newspapers within San Francisco Media Company — San Francisco Examiner and SF Weekly — moved into the Westfield Mall. Yes, the mall, but in the fifth floor business offices formerly occupied by the San Francisco State University School of Business extension program.Read more »

Uber wants to be the Vegas of gay weddings, only even faster

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In their frantic desire to be first with the next big thing and to grab market share by any means necessary, tech companies often act before really thinking through the implications of their ideas. And with its latest idea — facilitating on-the-spot weddings during Pride weekend — rideshare company Uber has finally jumped the shark.Read more »

Grand Jury warns SF to prepare for rising seas

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Following its recent report criticizing the Port of San Francisco for being unduly influenced by wealthy developers and their allies in the Mayor’s Office, the San Francisco Civil Grand Jury today released its second report of the current session, calling on the city to do more to prepare for the impacts of global warming.Read more »

Business tax breaks in SF jumped to nearly $17 million last year

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Employers in San Francisco received nearly $17 million in special business tax breaks from the city last year, with the biggest ticket corporate welfare categories being the Central Market Street and Tenderloin Area Exclusion — commonly known as the Twitter tax break after its catalyst and biggest beneficiary — and a tax break given to small businesses.Read more »

Is the SF District Attorney’s Office biased against cyclists?

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There’s been much discussion over the last year about whether police and prosecutors in San Francisco are biased against bicyclists. And while the San Francisco Police Department has admitted problems in their investigations of collisions that injure cyclists and pledged to do better (with mixed results), the District Attorney’s Office doesn’t seem have gotten the message. Read more »

Boom asks "What's the matter with San Francisco?" and offers insightful answers

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“What’s the matter with San Francisco?” asks the Summer 2014 issue of the Boom: A Journal of California, a quarterly magazine produced by the University of California Press, tapping an amazing array of writers to explore the struggle for the soul of San Francisco that has captured such widespread media attention in the last year.Read more »

City agencies defend their slow response to Airbnb's illegal rentals

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More information has been coming out about how Airbnb is used to convert San Francisco apartments into tourist rentals — including an interesting study reported by the San Francisco Chronicle last weekend — in advance of next month’s hearings on legislation to legalize and regulate short-term rentals.

But questions remain about why the city agencies in charge of regulating such “tourist conversions,” which have long been illegal under city law, have done so little to crack down on the growing practice. For more than two years, we at the Guardian have been publicly highlighting such violations, which have finally caught fire with the public in the last six months. Read more »