Sunday, April 11, 2010

May Meeting: Meet and Greet DCCC Candidates; Vote on June Endorsements; Elect Club Officers

Meet and Greet DCCC Candidates; Vote on June Endorsements; Elect Club Officers on

April 29, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Cav Wine Bar

On, Saturday April 3, the Issues and Endorsements Committee comprised of Exec Committee members Heidi Machen, Clay Harrell, Mike Ho, Steve LaPlante, Erik Cummins and club members Jim Reilly, Susan Chan, George Dias, JoAnn Scordino, Mary Jung joined by John O’Riordan, and Kevin Malone, met to consider positions for the upcoming election. Some proponents presented and the group debated all issues. Recommendations and analysis for the full membership vote on April 29, follow:

Local Measures

A. School Facilities Tax: SUPPORT (10-0)

The property tax would extend for 20 years the otherwise expiring parcel tax. Pro: Money is used for critical seismic upgrading and other structural and emergency system strengthening for schools. Con: Continued property tax up to $32.20 a year in an already expensive city.

B. Earthquake Bond: SUPPORT (9-Yes, 1-No, 1-Abstained)

Allows City to borrow up to $412.3 million secured by property tax revenues for critical preventive strengthening of infrastructure including: the water supply system, fire and police stations. Pro: City relies on these facilities in the event of major disaster or earthquake. Con: Doesn’t go far enough because money could not be used for renovating the jail at the Hall of Justice.

C. Film Commission Restructuring OPPOSE (10-0)

Presently, the Mayor has full authority in appointing commissioners and Executive Director to the Commission. This measure would split that authority with Board of Supervisors, allowing the Board to appoint 5 of the 11 members and allow the Commission then to choose its own Executive Director. Pro: Further Democratizes executive and legislative powers. Con: Contrary to concept of a “strong Mayor” government; gives commissioners the power to appoint or remove a department head.

D. Retirement Benefits Costs: SUPPORT (10-0)

Makes changes to SF Employees Retirement System that changes final compensation formula and changes formula for contributions of certain employees from 7% to 9% toward pension. All savings go to retiree health care trust fund. Pro: Good government measure intended to bring our budget under control. Con: Employees hired after certain date will have smaller benefits packages than in the past.

E. Line Item Police Security for Officials and Dignitaries: OPPOSE (10 No, 1 Abstain)

Would require Police annual budget to project the amount that will be spent on protecting officials and dignitaries throughout the year. Pro: Consistent with budget transparency, promotes fiscal planning. Con: May reduce Police discretion in spending. Primary motive may be to embarrass current Mayor who took security detail with him to Montana and whose security detail follows him on campaign trail.

F. Renter’s Economic Relief: OPPOSE (7 No, 2 Yes, 1 Abstain)

Would allow tenants to submit hardship applications to Rent Board that could then defer rent increases for discretionary period. Pro: In these tough economic times, provides some support for those hardest hit. Con: Landlords are also in tough economic times. Administrative burden outweighs actual help.

G. Transbay Transit Center: SUPPORT (11-0)

This would make it City policy to locate the northern end of the L.A. high-speed rail line at the Transbay Transit Center rather than locations further from downtown. Pro: Promotes transit network and may attract greater ridership to transit based on convenience to destinations. Con: May cost more, but most funds derive from federal and state sources.

State Measures

13. Limits on Property Tax Assessment.: SUPPORT (12-0)

Construction to seismically retrofit buildings would not trigger reassessment of property. Pro: Allows building owners to do the right thing without risking more tax burden. Con: Limits one potential way to boost property tax revenues.

14. Elections. Open Primaries: OPPOSE (12-0)

Allows all voters to choose candidates in primaries regardless of party affiliation. Pro: Promotes greater participation in democracy. Con: Weakens the party infrastructure and allows for chances to sabotage opponents at the ballot box.

15. Public Financing: SUPPORT (10-1)

Repeals ban on public financing. Allows candidates who abide by certain rules such as collecting small donations from at least 7500 supporters and agreeing to spending limits to receive grants, which are derived from increases in lobbyist registrations fees. Pro: May promote greater range of candidates from variety of economic backgrounds using new stream of funding. Con: Lobbyists fees would increase across the board, including lobbyists at non-profits such as Sierra Club.

16. Two Thirds Approval for Public Power: OPPOSE (8 No, 3 Yes, 1 Abstain)

Requires local government to obtain 2/3 voter approval before providing electricity service to new customers using public funds or bonds. Pro: Puts a stop to the county-by-county fight PG&E must wage each year against public power. Promises to give citizens the influence in decision-making it otherwise wouldn’t have. Con: Corporate interests at its worst: This limits local government in unprecedented ways in making decisions about providing power to its citizens when it may someday make sense to do so. Also, any public power plans already require public input.

17. Insurance Costs Based on Continuous Coverage: OPPOSE (12-0)

Allows auto insurers to discount rates to drivers who have continuously maintained their insurance coverage and increase costs to those who haven’t. Pro: Promises to promote and reward continuous coverage. Con: Unfairly punishes people who don’t have cars from time to time at big benefit to insurers.


Governor – Jerry Brown (11-0)

Lt. Governor – Gavin Newsom (7 Newsom, 1 Hahn, 2 Abstain)

Secretary of State – Debra Bowen (10-0)

Attorney General – Kamala Harris (10-0)

Controller - John Chiang (10-0)

Insurance Commissioner - Dave Jones (9 Jones, 2 De La Torre)

Senate District 8 - Leland Yee (by acclamation)

Assembly District 12 - Fiona Ma (by acclamation)

Assembly District 13 - Tom Ammiano (by acclamation)

Board of Equalization D1 – Betty Yee (by acclamation)

Sup. of Public Instruction – Gloria Romero (6 Romero, 1 Torlakson, 2 Abstain)


U.S. House of Representatives D12 – Jackie Speier

U.S. House of Representatives D 8 – Nancy Pelosi


Judge Seat 15 NO RECOMMENDATION (5 Dean, 5 No Endorse)

City Democratic Club has traditionally supported incumbent judges. However, Judge Ulmer is not a Democrat and our bylaws do not allow us to support him.

Judge Seat 6 LINDA COLFAX (8 Colfax, 3 Dorfman, 1 Abstain)

Democratic Central Committee – D12 and D13

Please review candidates list for Democratic County Central Committee as City Democratic Club’s Issues and Endorsements Committee will not make recommendations. However, members in good standing will have a chance to vote on these candidates at our April 29 meeting, 5:30 p.m., at Cav Wine Bar. DCCC candidates are invited to attend this session in their honor – and to introduce themselves to members prior to voting commencing at 6:30.


(vote for up to 12)

o John Avalos

o Michael Bornstein

o Michael A. Chan

o Andrew Clark

o Ronald Dudum

o Dan Dunnigan

o Bill Fazio

o Sandra Lee Fewer

o Chris Gembinski

o Elbert C. Hill

o Tom Hsieh

o Mary Jung

o Hene Kelly

o Mara S. Kopp

o Samuel Kwong

o Meagan Levitan

o Angelique Mahan

o Tualatai Mamoe

o Eric Mar

o Milton Marks

o Jake McGoldrick

o Jane Morrison

o Melanie Nutter

o Connie O'Connor

o Kelenia Olsen

o John Shanley

o Arlo Smith

o Mike Sullivan

o Matthew Tuchow

o Alex Volberding

o David Wong

o Larry Yee

o Jaynry Mak


(vote for up to 12)

o Melissa Ann A. Apuya

o Keith Baraka

o David Campos

o David Chiu

o Ryan Clary

o Larry Cohen

o Paul T. Currier

o Michael Goldstein

o Robert Haaland

o Rick Hauptman

o Chuck Hornbrook

o Hope Johnson

o Joseph Julian

o Leslie Rachel Katz

o Calvin Louie

o Rafael Mandelman

o Kim-Shree Maufas

o Carole Midgen

o Owen P. O'Donnell

o Aaron Peskin

o Eric Quezada

o Linda Richardson

o Alix Rosenthal

o Stuart "Stu" Smith

o Catherine Stefani

o Tom Taylor

o Joe Alioto Veronese

o David Villa-Lobos

o Debra Walker

o Scott Wiener

City Democratic Club Officers Candidates Slate for 2010

President – Jim Reilly

Vice President – Susan Chan

2nd Vice President – Mike Ho

Treasurer – Steve LaPlante

Corresponding Secty – George Dias

Recording Secty – Erik Cummins

Officers at Large – Clay Harrell and Heidi Machen