groundwater

Letters to the Editor – Sunset Beacon

Editor:

The Apothecarium’s June 8 hearing before the SF Planning Commission has been

postponed to July 13 by the SF Planning Department.

 

Although we are disappointed by the delay, we are eager to make our case before the SF

Planning Commission for our application to open a medical cannabis dispensary at

2505 Noriega St.

 

The dispensary will be co-owned by former Oakland Mayor

Jean Quan and her husband, Floyd Huen, M.D. Our vision is for a bicultural, bilingual

(Cantonese) dispensary where staff are trained to work in tandem with traditional

Chinese medicine. If all goes well, the dispensary will open in 2018.

Eliot Dobris, Head of Community Outreach, The Apothecarium

 

Editor:

Thanks for your mention of the Inner Sunset Green Benefit District (GBD) project in the

Spotlight section of your May 2017 issue. I’m a longtime resident of the Inner Sunset

involved in the GBD project and I’d like to provide additional details and clarification.

 

The Inner Sunset Green Benefit District project is a grassroots effort led by a group of

Inner Sunset residents and merchants, who envision a cleaner, greener, safer

neighborhood using the structure of a “benefit district” to do so.

 

While we thought it prudent to seek the advice of groups like Build Public

and the SF Department of Public Works, which successfully helped Dogpatch and

northwest Potrero Hill to form their GBD, they are not “spearheading” the project, as was

stated in your article.

 

The GBD will only happen if a majority of Inner Sunset property owners, both residential

and commercial, feel the project is important and agree to pay a property assessment.

We are currently testing the idea of a GBD by asking Inner Sunset residents to take an

online survey, which asks people to weigh in on possible neighborhood

improvement projects. The survey also tests acceptance of both the concept and possible

assessment amounts.

 

No algorithm has been decided upon for the assessment amount, but the survey

tests a range of possibilities from $150 to $500 per year for residential property owners.

 

Our goal, from the beginning, has been to be able to make simple improvements to our

neighborhood with a nominal fee that people are willing to make, but is

not burdensome.

 

We have been able to reach out to many neighbors via two well-attended large public

meetings and many small house parties, as well as tabling at the

Inner Sunset Farmers’ Market, Inner Sunset Sundays Flea Market and

walking door-todoor.

 

There will be additional public meetings in June and we enthusiastically welcome

neighbors who want to get involved!

 

Thank you for covering this important project. People can learn more about the GBD, as

well as upcoming events and survey results, at http://www.innersunsetgbd.org.

Al Manville, Inner Sunset Resident

 

Editor:

Columnist John M. Lee puts forth the not so subtle argument that 1970 San Francisco

Rent Control provisions have had the unintended consequences of escalating

rents, increasing home prices, as well as the inability of landowners to do

property investment.

 

This is not really true. It has been 47 years since 1970, there have been upturns and

downturns in the city’s economy and rental/property market during that time.

To say rent control explains the reason for the massive uptick in rent and real estate

prices since 1995 or 2009 is cherry picking a time frame and ignoring the external

economic factors responsible for these increases.

 

When increasing employment by Silicon Valley is not met by increases in high-density

housing, then the demand for whatever housing stock is available is going to increase.

Tenants paying rent do not influence this reality at all, so when Lee mentions

having to make hard choices based upon a false issue of unintended consequences,

what exactly does he mean?

 

Landowners can and do pass on property improvement costs. The expenses have to the

go through the Residential Rent Stabilization and Arbitrations Board, but these costs are

not prohibitive (or inhibitive) and to say landowners are refusing to re-invest because of

rent control is ridiculous. Look at every single city in the United States with a population

without rent control. Owners also do not re-invest or upgrade their property.

 

The main reason housing and pricing in the Bay Area is the highest in the U.S.A. is

because of the limited supply of land. We are not like Kansas City, Denver,

Houston, Chicago or St Louis surrounded by flat plains. The Bay Area also does not

have a lot of high-density residential complexes, such as Manhattan, so when there is an

influx of people prices are going to go up, regardless of rent control.

 

First and foremost, rent control is about what kind of community you want to create in

the city. Do you want a lot of transient young professions, who make their mark and then

move elsewhere? What about the artists, writers, teachers, sub-median wage workers

and musicians? Where will they live when they are priced out and have to move

somewhere and then commute one or two hours a day?

 

Measured growth is already happening. Look at the apartment condo

development on Market and Buchanan streets, or over by 16th and Owens streets in the

Mission Bay. Rent control did not appear to inhibit these developments.

 

So, why bring up this “unintended consequences” argument when it is a false argument?

Fact is, Lee belongs to The SF Round Table, a networking group consisting of top Realtors

in the City. So, his viewpoints should be seen in that context. With all due respect,

Lee should disclose these matters when his opinion is printed in the Richmond Review and the Sunset Beacon.

Gino Napoli

 

Editor:

Some 460,000 residents will get degraded tap water. The SF Public Utilities Commission’s

(SFPUC) Steve Ritchie presented the plan to add minimally treated ground water (well

water) in increasing amounts to our treated Hetch Hetchy water. The SFPUC says the City

needs an emergency “alternative water” source.

 

Residents attending a May 24 SF Board of Supervisors’ Public Safety and Neighborhood

Services Committee meeting opposed the plan due to effects on children, people with

sensitive health conditions and higher levels of contaminants, such as nitrates

and chromium-6, etc.

 

The board postponed its decision, but the chair can decide when to hold a meeting,

possibly on June 7. There’s a petition against using well water that’s circulating:

http://www.change.org/p/san-franciscopublic-utilities-commission-stopthe-plan-to-cut-san-

francisco-shetch-hetchy-water-with-groundwater.

 

Also contact the supervisors (www.sfbos.org website) to voice your position and to call

for another hearing.

Rose Hillson

 

Editor:

I live on Lake Street, between 26th and 27th avenues. In April I noticed that my tap water

didn’t taste right, even after being filtered by a Brita unit with a new

filter. I’m now drinking bottled water. It seems that the new program

is not working well.

John de Forest

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