District 8 City Parks Forum
October 12 2010 - 6:00 PM
Glen Park Elementary School I. District 8 Candidates in attendance: a. b. c. d. II. III. Rafael Mandelman Rebecca Prozan Scott Wiener Bill Hemenger

Moderator: Libby Smiley, Barbary Coast Consulting Introductory Remarks from Neighborhood Parks Council (NPC) and Glen Park Association (GPA) a. Meredith Thomas, Executive Director, NPC i. What is NPC? We are an independent non profit in SF working to ensure everyone elected in SF doesn’t just like parks, but are educated about our parks. We want to educate our candidates, and right now as they are running for office, their ears are open. There are informed candidates in D8 and they are most certainly parkfriendly, but each is different. ii. Format: NPC and GPA is hosting tonight’s meeting. First portion is focused on park and open space questions. During second part, we’ll have a more open conversation about Glen Park, broad community issues in D8. There are question cards on your chairs. As you have questions, please hold them in the air and someone will collect them. b. Michael Rice, President, GPA i. GPA joined with NPC because the association traditionally has this sort of forum around the same time (tomorrow night). Heard of this and wanted to work together. There should be a lot of good questions. ii. Happy to be president at this kind of elect event. The Internet, radio, the rhetoric in election season – we have 4 candidates who will talk constructively about issues. So with that, we’re ready to start. c. Libby Smiley, Moderator, Barbary Coast Consulting i. D8’s attendance has put all of the other districts to shame!

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ii. There will be a 1 minute time limit for opening introductory remarks and a 1 minute limit for your answer for each question. Begin with 1 minute introductory remarks. IV. Introductory Remarks from each candidate as well as their favorite park a. Rafael Mandelman i. Thank you NPC, Libby, GPA. ii. Live right next to Dolores Park and that really is the park that is near and dear. There has been a lot of issues there and there are people here who are embroiled in those issues. The District 8 parks and dedication to them put many other districts to shame from Glen Canyon to Buena Vista. It’s great to be here. b. Scott Wiener i. Tie between Dolores Park and Walter Haas. 2 amazing parks in our district. Track record of getting things done. LGBT center, president of his neighborhood association. Wants to keep into the basic running of the city – dealing with Bart station parameter, etc. Not looking at happy meals. We need to consider the Parks bonds and ensuring that Glen Park is getting enough attention form Ingleside police station. c. Bill Hemenger i. Lives in Diamond heights. Favorite park is Glen Canyon. 2 dogs and in the canyon every day. Lived at 19th and church on Dolores park. For the last 8 years, Glen Canyon. I got into the race 6-7 months ago. I am a political outsider, non-attorney coming from the private sector. I want to apply those things to City Hall. d. Rebecca Prozan i. Rescue Dog who doesn’t do well off leash. ii. Walter Haas, she voted on it in the SFNPC Best of Parks Poll near Corona Heights. iii. She is proud to have voted on the Eureka center while on the Rec and Park Commission. She has worked for Willie Brown where she was focused on fixing pot holes, keeping the streets clean. iv. Is a prosecutor, wants to keep beat cops in the loop. As Bevan Dufty’s legislative aide, she’s proud to have his endorsement. SF is fractionalized. Believes we need leaders to bring people together. Audience Questions (moderated by Libby Smiley) a. I see effective staff as crucial to keeping our recreation facilities vibrant, safe and accessible. How would you increase funding for staffing of facilities? Specifically, what would you do to ensure that Recreation Centers were open on Saturdays and Sundays as well as in high use periods during the week? i. Rebecca Prozan



1. RPD did a re-org. They have eliminated 137 Rec Director positions. This means that instead of Rec Directors at the centers, there are people being invited to rent the centers, fields, etc. 2. There is a need to increase revenue to keep things open. 3. Example: Upper Noe has had an increase in use --- this past weekend there was a Litquake event at Upper Noe Rec Center. 50 people were enjoying literary events in the neighborhood. This is what they are supposed to be about and we need to be sure we’re balancing that. As a commissioner, I was responsible for keeping our rec centers open. I’m keeping my ear to the ground and fighting like hell to keep rec centers open. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. Our city and parks are our centers of life. They are the gem to the city and draw in tourism dollars and people visiting our town and city. You go anywhere in the world and they have amazing parks. We should too. We need every possible option on the table to improve our park and recreation experience. 2. While not married to the idea, having a small local vendor to take over the kiosk in the park to give back by way of capital improvements in the parks, trash clean up and increased park and recreation services is a possible solution to our deficit. These changes could lead to having the income to keep our rec centers open longer hours. iii. Scott Wiener 1. It’s important to know when the peaks hour are, when people will use it and be sure that they are open those hours. iv. Rafael Mandelman 1. --- Technical Difficulties made it impossible to gather Rafael’s answer, for details, please contact Rafael’s Campaign. Contact for this campaign is at the end of these notes. --b. Are you in favor of a bike route through Glen Canyon or in eliminating the forests that exist in our canyon? i. Bill Hemenger: 1. Not in favor of the bike path or eliminating any of the forested area in the Canyon. ii. Rebecca Prozan 1. The bike lane is not the right direction without further development considerations. 2. There are many kids in Glen Park and it should be preserved as the jewel that it is. iii. Rafael Mandelman 3

1. Has heard the rumors of a bike path through Glen Canyon. 2. As the candidate of choice for the Sierra Club and League of Conservation Voters, he would not support the bike lane or any deforestation. iv. Scott Wiener 1. Is also against removing forest. 2. At this juncture, the bike path would be too much work on a limited budget. To do this project piecemeal would not be workable with the community. 3. There needs to be a holistic approach when looking at large projects with far reaching impacts. c. What is your position about privatization - having commercial entities in the parks? i. Bill Hemenger 1. There was never a consideration for putting in a big box store, like Starbucks or Walmart. If the vending and businesses in the park stay small and are done correctly there should be an opportunity to test earned revenue out as a possibility for our parks. 2. If there are other ways to close the budget, keep our parks clean (as the vendors are required to do), we need to hear them as a city. ii. Scott Wiener 1. Not a fan of privatizing parks, but feels that the vendors who are awarded contracts should be case-by-case. 2. There may be benefits to having food in the larger parks, but inappropriate in smaller parks. iii. Rafael Mandelman 1. The other option to closing the Rec and Park budget gap is to tax ourselves. 2. The challenge right now is the deficit and Rec and Park is desperate to find the funding necessary to not need to cut further. 3. These proposals are troubling. Charging for Coit Tower, the arboretum or rent to open up shop in a park is a different model than we are used to. Rec and Park is being pushed to find the revenue so that we don’t have to through a tax. iv. Rebecca Prozan 1. There are two sides to commercialization: vendors like Blue Bottle or Naming rights to our parks. The issue isn’t that we shouldn’t have vendors in the park, the issue is that neighbors need to be told. Further, naming v. vendors should be considered by scale. Selling the naming rights to the baseball park or football field is scaled appropriately, but selling naming rights to Dolores Park would not be. Vendors 4

could be an answer, but only if the neighbors are involved. d. What are you going to do to reverse the funding to Rec and Park back to “general fund”? i. Rebecca Prozan 1. There are already Community Benefits Districts (CBDs) for the business corridors in neighborhoods that include an assessment. Why not have a second CBD for the park with the same system? This cannot promise that there will be shift the Rec and Park budget because the question we’re trying to answer is how do we stretch the money left after the cuts to cover all of the needs. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. Would never propose a special assessment (like a Parks CBD). 2. You cannot promise that there will be general fund dollars for the department and it’s a growing issue. There needs to be a coalition on the board working to find a way to fill these gaps. iii. Scott Wiener 1. Boils down to reforming and vulcanizing the budget process. 2. There should be no set asides or individual revenue streams. Set asides should be more difficult to get and a supermajority should be used to make adjustments to these set-asides and any budget issues. iv. Rafael Mandelman 1. There is merit to the assessment that Rebecca suggests. 2. The challenge is the decentralization and equity issues around the idea. The more affluent areas would get better parks because they can afford an assessment. 3. A possible solution is a City-wide assessment to pay for Golden Gate Park, which would free up money for our neighborhood parks. e. What are you going to do to reverse playground and pool closures on Sundays/weekends? i. Rafael Mandelman 1. There are 2 measures on the ballot that can help us re-open our centers. There is an increase in the hotel tax as well as a measure where people who are transferring property over $5 million would have an increased fee. There is also a potential alcohol fee. 2. If you care about parks, Muni, and city benefits, you have to support these taxes. ii. Scott Wiener 1. There are a number of superb friends of groups in our district and city-wide. For example, Friends of Dolores Park, 5

Dolores Park Works, etc. They are the key in raising the much-needed funds to improve our parks. We need to be strategic in creating partnerships to raise funds for Rec and Park. iii. Bill Hemenger 1. No on all of the taxes. 2. Someone needs to zero in on the inefficiencies , reorganize the budget and weed out any issues of overspending. There is no need to raise taxes, because they are just the easy way out. We should deal with waste first. iv. Rebecca Prozan 1. Agrees with Bill – there are inefficiencies. Why is there a dedicated Golf Fund? As a commissioner, she wanted to remove the golf set aside. 2. It is not appropriate for one interest to lock down an amount of money when the Rec Centers close. She has already raised this issue with Phil Ginsberg, General Manager 3. No tax is called for. This is a way to raise ideas creatively to solve this problem. f. Sharp park golf course in Pacifica, which is owned by SF has many economic challenges. Will you support the restoration of Sharp Park and divestment of the park to the National Park Service? i. Rebecca Prozan 1. Not comfortable giving a yes or no, as she has not been brief yet. But it is something that is taken out of the SF budget that would be attractive to cut, as it’s a large amount of money. 2. While she may want to remove the set-aside, she does not want to remove golf from San Francisco entirely. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. Would most likely be in favor of this suggestion. Chrissy Field is an example. 2. Less golf courses wouldn’t be harmful, we should compare SF to other cities of the same size to see what is a typical number of golf courses per capital and geographically. iii. Scott Wiener 1. For now, keep it as a golf course, as it would be expensive to restore during this budget crunch. 2. SF has disproportionately put money into Sharp Park, which is an issue, but to put more into it now would be unwise. iv. Rafael Mandelman 1. Supports it as a means to remove expenses from the budget. This is a place where the city wastes money.


2. 100s of Thousands of dollars are going into a park that is NOT within the city limits. This should not be San Francisco’s job or park to maintain. g. It’s great that several of the candidates have dogs, but what about kids and parks? What are your priorities for District 8 playground renovations and updates? How will you keep kids safe from dogs and able to enjoy greens space? i. Scott Wiener 1. There are a lot of users in our parks and not all people always understand that they are for all use. There is an opportunity to be creative. There should be space for dogs, youth, etc. 2. Example: Duboce Park. It’s a safe place for kids and dogs to not run each other over due to creative use of fencing and space allocation. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. Is a dog owner, but conscious that there are more than just dog uses in the parks. 2. Kids need a place to play and that playgrounds should be redone to cover all ages. Right now most are for toddlers, up to age 4 or 5. There is no place for 8-16 year olds to play. We go to extremes. iii. Rebecca Prozan 1. Upper Noe is an example of a location where once the dog park went in, the park no longer allowed teens to play there. The reason cited was trhat the play area was too small for tenns to use. 2. This is the same situation with Eureka. There needs to be space that is open for kids. Duboce is an excellent example of it done well. 3. Dolores Park doesn’t want fencing. 4. The key is to listen, go through the process, and know when to drive for a solution. iv. Rafael Mandelman 1. Was going door to door and spoke with a gentleman who said “I drive. I don’t bike. I have 3 kids and no dog. The city doesn’t care about me.” 2. Bevan has been a great convener and has had a lot of success. 3. The goal is for people to show each other manners. The government cannot govern good manners, but at our parks, you as an individual should. h. Supervisors often make decisions that have an impact outside their district. One such area is CEQA appeals. Many San Franciscans are 7

concerned about the proposal to pave over 6 acres of western Golden Gate Park with artificial turf and install 60 foot sports lights. An environmental impact Report (EIR) is planned that will discuss alternatives, including renovating the fields with natural grass. Will you follow this process and consider the alternatives carefully? i. Scott Wiener 1. Will follow the process and consider alternatives. 2. Some situations, like maintenance and the need for more soccer fields could impact the decision made, but all solutions will be considered after the CEQA and EIR have been completed. ii. Rafael Mandelman 1. With 10 years in land-use law, he is familiar with EIR reviews and reads them with particular interest. 2. Gut reaction: Flood lights are not appropriate in Golden Gate Park. The turf might be useful, as a lot of people may treat it with care, it is a resource for the city. iii. Rebecca Prozan 1. Rec and Park spent thousands of dollars to renovate the soccer fields at Dolores Park and it did not go well. 2. Artifical turf is easier to maintain and cheaper. 3. Cannot comment for or against, but has a natural preference for natural grass. iv. Bill Hemenger 1. District elections may be by district, but they affect the whole city. It is important to know all the races and who is running. Think big! 2. Runs every Saturday with the Frontrunners in Golden Gate Park. He has seen the area and is concerned. He’d like to learn more about the issue. i. What recreational opportunities have played an important role in your life, and what would you set as priorities for the Rec and Park Department moving forward? i. Bill Hemenger 1. As a runner, he has explored the whole city from the Bay Bridge to Golden Gate Bridge. Would like to see this path run further south into Dogpatch, India Basin and Bayview for better connectivity between all of the neighborhoods. ii. Rebecca Prozan 1. Walking her dogs means that she goes to different parks to see what’s happening 2. Fascinated in LGBT sports such as the gay games, softball ;leagues and basketball amongst that community. iii. Rafael Mandelman


1. Also a runner, he runs cross country through Golden Gate Park, Lands End, Golden Gate Bridge and Twin Peaks. The vistas inspire him by their beauty. 2. While running is his passion, his job is to provide a forum to speak to the wants of the people. If there is a soccer field needed and kids who want to play, he will work to ensure there is a soccer field in an accessible area. iv. Scott Wiener 1. Swimmer with no pool, as most of SF homes and apartments do not have pools. He has often travelled over 30 minutes to find a space where a pool exists. 2. Does yoga and loved when Rec Centers use their space for yoga. 3. Further, he wants to ensure there’s enough space in our park system to just sit and hang out with friends. Passive enjoyment and socializing is one of the must-haves in our parks. j. How do you propose organizing and leading the community democratic process around park reprogramming and renovations? How would you help bring together the different and often conflicting interests? i. Rebecca Prozan 1. There is no such thing as “perfect notice,” but we have got to get better at letting the public know about changes in our parks. Dolores Park, Glen Canyon Park – there needs to be a process and all city departments need to be at the table. All stakeholders should feel they have a shot at giving input. This includes all renovations and closures. The public deserves piece of mind. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. The Noe Valley Parklet example comes to mind as a street closure that was not developed with a consensus and was shut down as a result of not getting community consensus. 2. San Franciscans love to be part of the process, but there does need to be a time limit in which people can expect to participate in the process. iii. Scott Wiener 1. It is important to understand that not all of the people at any given meeting necessarily represent the whole community. As a leader, it is not just who yells the loudest or shows up the most. 2. Was the president of the Neigborhood group that work with the 17th and Castro parklet/plaza. He worked through it with the business neighbors who felt it would negatively impact their businesses, but have now grown to love the parklet. 9

iv. Rafael Mandelman 1. Both Dolores Park and Noe Valley parklet raise interesting points. The Board of Appeals has gone above and beyond the best it can do, but the important thing is for your neighbors to know what you’re doing. 2. RPD concessions should have been shared sooner, or in more accessible communications methods. If the community is engaged in the idea, it can lead to the finer points of agreement. k. Rec and Park Commissioners currently are appointed by the mayor. Would you be in favor of making these positions elected positions instead? i. Bill Hemenger 1. No, believes the mayor is elected for their wisdom and has the foresight to select the right commissioners ii. Scott Wiener 1. No. Keep in mind that love them or hate them, they are the mayor and they will be the mayor for 6 months or 4 years. 2. We often restructure a system because we’re angry at the person we’ve elected into office, but we don’t realize that these changes are permanent. 3. If parks are screwed up, I want the mayor accountable. Accountability is at the point where they appoint the commissioners. iii. Rafael Mandelman 1. Mayoral responsibility is meaningless. The mayor is never held accountable for a failing muni system or parks. There needs to be more Sunshine in the commission, perhaps through another appointing body. iv. Rebecca Prozan 1. The charter was changed in 1992 with Willie Brown. There was a Board versus mayor mentality. This past June the issue was the Film Commission. In 1992 it was “how do we take over from Willie Brown?” and now it’s about taking power from Newsom. 2. No one is looking at the issue – the parks. 3. Lastly, it takes thousands of dollars to run a system of electing parks commissioners, it is more efficient for the appointment and in the best interest of the city. l. Would you be in favor of abolishing the entrance fee for the Arboretum? i. Scott Wiener: Yes. ii. Rafael Mandelman: Yes iii. Rebecca Prozan: Yes, if we can afford to. 10

iv. Bill Hemenger: Yes. m. Are you in favor of shutting down the gun club at Lake Merced and exploring the possibility of establishing a wildlife rescue center there? i. Rafael Mandelman: I would need to know more. ii. Bill Hemenger: Same iii. Scott Wiener: Same iv. Rebecca Prozan: Yes. Get the guns out of our parks and off of our streets. n. What is your opinion about building new/small parks or open areas to service our district community and other parts of the city? i. Rafael Mandelman 1. So long as the maintenance resources are there. Building pocket parks, parklets and plazas adds to the burden on the public sector. ii. Scott Wiener 1. Pavement to Parks program, which has worked on the 17th Street and Noe Plaza, have allowed for creativity in the city. Castro has very little open space. We should be creative with what we have. iii. Bill Hemenger 1. I’m in favor of protecting open space but we should shore up our current open space. We have no money to be expanding into new open spaces. iv. Rebecca Prozan 1. The deficit is one piece of the problem. The vote on renovations is done. There can be development of new park space, but there may not be the gardening staff to ensure that parks remain safe, clean and open. o. Your opinion of using social networking technology as a means of fundraising for Rec and Park? i. Scott Wiener 1. It’s a good thing to engage. It is good to keep people who are not normally engaged engaged. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. I depend on Facebook to keep up to date. No brainer. I use it for local parks. iii. Rebecca Prozan 1. Anything to raise consciousness. Ingleside Police does this—get word out when we can. App on iphone to swipe credit cards. iv. Rafael Mandelman


1. His campaign forces him to tweet. People use twitter and facebook. If it works as a means of fundraising, I’m for it. Statistic: Phil Ginsburg established 200 too few gardeners. In Golden Gate Park, 90 gardeners were hired and now only 30 remain. Private fundraising may not close the gap. p. Would you be in favor it enforcing the Urban Forest’s Article 16 as a means of raising revenue for SF? i. Article 16: Urban Forest. Protection of street trees. No pruning of trees by non-arborists. Fine begins at $500. ii. Rebecca Prozan, Scott Wiener, Bill Hemenger 1. I’ll look into it. iii. Rafael Mandelman 1. Interesting rules on how we live. Replacing wooden windows. No enforcement money and street trees are sometimes on private property. Would push for enforcement. q. Who would be your first choice for interim mayor if one is needed? i. Rafael Mandelman 1. Someone else said Reskin. Who is planning on running and who can public stand. There are benefits to a short-term mayor. Mike Hennessey is one suggestion. Thus, no stress. ii. Scott Wiener 1. You deserve to know. It may be the 1st and most important decision by the new board. 2. Suggestions: Ed Harrington and Mike Hennessey 3. Other people: Dennis Herrera, Leno, Dufty. iii. Bill Hemenger 1. Sean Elsbernd 2. Bevan Dufty iv. Rebecca Prozan 1. From my contacts, it seems that the old board, not the new board, will make this decision. r. My brother was victim of a very violent crime- he walked into a burglary- apparently two career criminals bludgeoned him at an auto repair shop. What is your stand on parolee’s on the loose? i. Bill Hemenger 1. Public safety. I’m all for police presence. Diamond Heightsrash of car crime. 10pm at night. 4pm afternoon. ii. Rebecca Prozan 1. I hope your brother is okay. I’m sorry to hear about this. CDC is under-funded. As DA, she has prosecuted people who have committed violent crimes. She has seen holds on parolees lifted that shouldn’t have. Judge not wiser. As DA


you deliver crappy news. Crime is prosecuted. Victims must participate. iii. Rafael Mandelman 1. Was horrified as well. SF spends a huge amount of money on our justice system. Supervisors must hold the police force accountable and, often release is a terrible solution to the problem of not having the staff or money to keep dangerous people in the justice system. 2. One thing voters can do is to vote for Kamala Harris as Attorney General of CA. iv. Scott Wiener 1. Violent attacks in district 8, Castro, Diamond Heights, etc. Hall of justice not functioning as it should. We as a city have to do a better job at holding people accountable for their behavior. Hall of Justice needs to run better. Public safety. He is a founding member of Castro Community on Patrol. Proud to have support of police and fire department. s. Please discuss your views on tenants’ rights and landlord rightscurrent laws and changes. i. Bill Hemenger 1. I was a renter. Now I own rental property. I think it’s polarized here. There are a few bad apples. Discussion on both sides to talk. ii. Scott Wiener 1. I support rent control. Do not demonize any groups. Tenants, landlords, owners. City Hall. Ram through laws with little input. Everyone should have a seat at table. iii. Rafael Mandelman 1. I am a strong supporter of rent control and protection for renters. I want small property owner to understand that I am your representative as well. Critically important to allow for preservation of diversity. It’s hard to be a landlord—little things I can do to help without hurting tenant rights. iv. Rebecca Prozan 1. Interview with small property owners. How do I get you to rent your property? People are terrified. Been a long-term tenant, now homeowner. Not supported by any tenants/land associations. t. Do you have ideas on the development review process in San Francisco? Is it working? i. Rebecca Prozan 1. No. Not working. People are spending thousands of dollars to get through this. 1 of 11 are helpful. Mayor who wants development to stimulate economy would be helpful. Need 13

the mayor on the phone to make sure that development is happening. ii. Rafael Mandelman 1. Reasonably better. Neighborhood people don’t trust Planning department to follow their own rules (i.e. Neighborhood Character). Arbitrarily opposed or applied. Developers have similar concerns. The larger city-wide projects (i.e. the Rincon tower) get approved. Smaller developers don’t understand why their project takes forever to get approved while these massive projects receive approval so quickly. iii. Scott Wiener 1. Process is broken. This is seen in the delays, expense and damage to communities that occur. Look at upper Market, Castro, Valencia. Lengthy development approval. Small projects want to stay but they can’t. The process is broken. iv. Bill Hemenger 1. Most dysfunctional procedures in city. 2. Slows economy and growth. Discourage fees. pro/con of economy. u. Do you believe that “congestion pricing” for driving into downtown should be considered? i. Scott Wiener 1. I do not support the current plan. Given the physical layout of San Francisco, it is not workable. Crossing a street shouldn’t lead to a charge. There are other potential workable models such as bridge tolls. I’m not categorically ruling it out but the plan I see now—I do not support. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. I oppose completely. It would impede traffic and slow the commute. iii. Rebecca Prozan 1. Not a fan of downtown pricing. Yes on San Mateo bridge toll. Not charge on the way into San Francisco. iv. Rafael Mandelman 1. MUNI reform. I feel like I’ve been working on MUNI issues for a pretty long time. One of the things that I know is that MUNI is dramatically underbudgeted and so if we ever want to close that $100M annual deficit by MTA-- to invest in capitol and technology, to make our trains and buses. We need more money for improvements. If we are serious about MUNI and being more environmental and sustainable, we have to think about money. And still what I hear from my opposition is their opposition to congestion pricing and


general fund revenue. I think congestion pricing is worth looking into. v. Do you support or oppose public power for San Francisco? i. Rebecca Prozan 1. Not at this time. No money in one to two years. ii. Bill Hemenger 1. Can’t ever do parking lots iii. Scott Wiener 1. No, I do not support taking over. PG&E have the eminent domain. City is not in the position to expand into a new business. PG&E needs competition in a major way. iv. Rafael Mandelman 1. If you think about what works in a city and what the city does a pretty good job of doing is deliver water. Fear of city municipalization isn’t necessary. II believe that the city is not ready but it is not a bad idea. w. How would you navigate and influence decisions made by the entire board and the rest of city government to realize these? i. Bill Hemenger 1. I have the least amount government experience up here. However, being in the private sector for 25 years, you don’t get much done without having to earn a profit, to minimize the margin. You have to work with a lot of different organizations. I have been working for Oracle for the past 6 years and have processed 21 integrations and acquisitions. It’s a matter of diplomatically negotiating your position and to earn the respect of the rest of the supervisors and to realize the benefits and value of what we’re working towards. ii. Rebecca Prozan 1. Bevan gets least credit for this. 2. We have to look at fixing SF as a whole. The district needs someone who can work with all sides on the board. iii. Rafael Mandelman 1. I’ve been endorsed by a majority of the Board of Supervisors. So to walk through the door and be able to work with colleagues and have a high level of respect—I am the candidate that can offer that. I want you to understand that I don’t represent anyone else. I represent the voters of District 8. So my job is to reflect your values, your concerns. The people of D8 see the BOS and are troubled or amused or both. My relationships will allow to play a leadership roll on BOS. Carmen Chu has endorsed Scott Wiener. I called her up and say hey I don’t really want to have a minority on the board feeling isolated. I want to work with her. 15

iv. Scott Wiener 1. I think if you look at the BOS, you can have a good working relationship with your colleagues without always agreeing. If you look at my track record, I have worked with people I don’t always agree with. I worked as a chairman of Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC). That is a rambunctious group of people. Rafael and I—we have a lot of disagreements but worked very closely together on voter registration and brought positive results. Then when Aaron Peskin came in and took over as chair, he called regularly for the first six months and questioned me about insurance or about voter registration programs. Some people told me don’t return his calls but I did. I wanted the Democratic party to succeed. That’s why you have to be professional and set aside differences. x. Will you help small businesses survive in San Francisco? i.e. permits, city loans and try to protect our business corridors from big box stores i. Bill Hemenger 1. I have lived in the Castro. If you look at our inventory stock, there is 20% vacancy rate in small stores. We’re left at less than 9% nationally recognized stores such as Wells Fargo or Starbucks. I point to Levi’s on 18th st in the Castro. They’re a perfect example of a big box store—globally recognized label. They really respected our neighborhood. They paid attention to the architecture. They hired our residents and gave them health insurance. They gave back to the community. Case by case basis. ii. Rebecca Prozan 1. An example of when we should use a local business is in contracting paychecks for printing. This service was being done in Arizona. There are several great paycheck printing locations in SF or CA that could do it. 2. Don’t mind a surcharge to keep things local or if the price is slightly higher to do business. 3. In the case of big box stores and businesses. It should be case by case. I was against American Apparel. American Apparel tried to come into the Mission and did a poor job of adapting to the culture of the district while Levi’s on Castro Street did a good job adapting to the community needs. iii. Rafael Mandelman 1. Throughout the department, there needs to be a more customer service oriented approach. More outdoor cafes or whatever the needs are of small businesses.


2. Our tax structure in the city. The way we are getting money now is really screwed up. We rely heavily on the payroll tax which is a tax on jobs. We require a lot of fees from the small businesses. I think shifting our emphasis on a gross receipt tax and reducing the payroll tax would make a lot of sense. 3. The danger of the case-by-case approach to the larger retailers is the gradual slide towards the national chain. What we really need to do is protect the character of our neighborhood. Each new chain that comes in, we need to make it harder for them. iv. Scott Wiener 1. I agree that the payroll tax needs to be reformed. It is a job killer now. I know small business owners who cut the hours of their staff because they don’t want to hit the $250k threshold to trigger the payroll tax. If they go beyond the $250k threshold, they can get retroactively taxed from dollar #1. Terrible, terrible system and we need to reform it. 2. I support the small business assistance center. They provide case matters to people who are starting small businesses or people who are trying to grow their small businesses and help them to navigate through this process. In terms of chain stores, I think it is a case by case matter. Not to say no big chain stores or all big chain stores. Rigid thinking is bad for community. I support Trader Joe’s but Walgreens shouldn’t be allowed in when there are already 5 storefronts nearby. y. What is your position on the “hot button” propositions- B, G and L? i. Libby Smiley: Please check candidate websites for their positions. Their positions were not discussed during the forum to save time. You can find their contact information at the end of this document. z. In such a wealthy city like San Francisco, why is the commonwealth experience (Rec & Park/MUNI/etc.) so poor, struggling and under budgeted? What can be done about the chronic budget deficit? i. Rafael Mandelman 1. Well it’s not actually our fault. It’s the voters of state of CA’s fault. We in San Francisco are doing everything we can to adequately fund healthcare. I think the smartest thing to do is a tax on income. I think a lot of income tax is something that San Franciscans can get a lot of benefit from. ii. Scott Wiener 1. I disagree with Rafael. I think having a city income tax in San Francisco is not a good idea. There are potentially severe impacts on job creation and companies wanting to relocate. I do agree with Rafael that the problem is the state of CA. Every year Cobble together money for MUNI and state cuts 17

midyear. We’re never going to resolve the budget problem until state dramatically reforms the tax is CA. In San Francisco, I don’t automatically support every tax or oppose every tax. On the ballot this year, I’m not supporting the hotel tax, but I do support the property transfer tax for $5-10M and up property and I think that is fair. iii. Bill Hemenger 1. Taxes. Easy way to do it, right? We need to look at where we’re wasting first. We’ve got to look at the budget and we’ve got to look at our wastes. Even though we have some 26,000 employees making $100,000 or more, I am the only one up here supporting Prop B. I think that’s a step in the right direction. We’ve got to get the pension situation under control and I also think that the payroll tax does need reorganization. Either get rid of it or in 5 years, 10 years to stimulate job growth. There are a lot of different ways to generate revenue. We’ve got to make it easier for businesses to start up here in San Francisco and employ our people. iv. Rebecca Prozan 1. When we faced our record high deficit last year-- $487M, we adapted by working with our city employees and labor to renegotiate contracts. 2. But next year the real work is going to have to begin. What we have now is you’ve got city employees who hear rumors about budget cuts. All over the map, city work is not getting done because people are worried about their budget. VI. Summary Remarks from each candidate a. Rebecca Prozan i. San Francisco is facing extraordinary challenges. ii. I bring a common sense approach. I am neighborhood focused. iii. Neighborhood seniors—know neighborhood issues. I don’t see just Castro. I’m HQed in Noe Valley. I am not identified with any specific area of this district, I am a whole package. iv. Was previously Bevan Dufty’s legislative aide, DA, Glen Canyon. She is Park-Friendly. b. Bill Hemenger i. I’m the newcomer. Only been in race for 6-7 months. Only truly independent candidate. I am not accepting any endorsements. I am accepting no money. You have to ask yourself—those endorsements and those checks come at a price. My 25 years of experience in growing business is valuable. c. Scott Wiener i. Thanks for taking your time to come out tonight. When you’re evaluating your candidates, it’s important to remember that anyone 18

can talk. Anyone can read up on things and talk about it. Think about what we’ve actually done. I have a proven track record. I am the only person on this stage who has built a community center. I am the only person on this stage to be president of a neighborhood association. The only person to have co-founded a safety organization. I don’t say that to brag. I know how to get things done at City Hall. I’ve worked with almost every department. I’m proud of the endorsements I have because they reflect that work. I’m proud that Senator Mark Leno is supporting me. Nancy Pelosi, Carmen Chu, the healthcare workers, the police department, the fire department. I’m proud of that support and I will work day and night for you. d. Rafael Mandelman i. You should all pay very close attention to special interest. You pay attention to all the things in your mailbox. CPMC, realtors, developers are paying close attention. They don’t want me. I’ve had a little more trouble than some of my opponents, partly because of the decisions I’ve made during the past years especially regarding healthcare. Nurses, green party, etc. Republicans don’t want me. I hope you all will vote for me because I will stand up for you. VII. Unanswered Questions due to shortage of time a. You all spoke on landlord and tenant issues without addressing vacancy control or the condo conversion lottery. Do you support vacancy control? Do you support restricting condo conversion? b. What would you do to improve management audits in the city? There is often no follow-up on findings. c. One candidate appeared in Glen Park—meeting and getting to know folks. I have never seen any others until this moment. Why? d. I came because there was a note on my car regarding the problem with bee polyps dashing the hopes of any car owner of keeping his car clean. They (the beekeeper) live on the street we’re on right now (Lippard). What can we do about it? Candidate contact info: a. Scott Wiener i. ii. iii. 538 Castro Street San Francisco, CA 94114 b. Rebecca Prozan i. ii. iii. (415)643-6551 iv. 1195 Church Street, San Francisco, CA 94114 c. Bill Hemenger i. ii. 19


iii. (415)401-8440 d. Rafael Mandelman i. ii. iii. (415)503-1443 iv. 2231 Market Street, SF 94114


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