Our friend and neighbor Peg Brennan died on July 19 at the age of 89, having lived a thoroughly engaged and inspired life. She was a mother of three, a den mother of the Zen Den (her son’s boy scout troop bringing them on peace marches), civil rights and anti-war activist, feminist, NYC social worker, Senior Action Network member and Glide member as well as an entrepreneur having opened an anti-war coffeehouse in 1963 (MacDougal East), the NY Women’s Coffeehouse together with a collective at 57 Seventh Avenue South, a “head shop” of sorts (The Clean Machine) to ensure her teenagers had something constructive to do during the tumultuous sixties, and collectively restored an old Brooklyn brownstone in which she lived communally for 30 years. She obtained her BA at NYU in Latin American Studies in 1948. She was also a close friend of and owned a home with Flo Kennedy for those of you who may remember Flo.
Welcome to the Frontpage
Future Development on Page Street Development
By Kevin Bayuk, HANC President
On Thursday July 11th HANC welcomed three presentations regarding three separate properties along Page Street that are involved in proposed changes or developments in the coming years.
First, Mark Salkind from the Urban School on Page Street presented a detailed preliminary plan for a new 26,000 sq. ft. gym and class room building constructed at the current parking lot site. Mr. Salkind described the impetus behind the proposed development, showed preliminary concept drawings and invited questions from the membership.
Following the Urban School presentation, Harold Love, Facilities Director for the Boys and Girls Club, presented details about the proposed new Boys and Girls Club building at Fulton Street and Gough. He did not share any information about the status of the current building on Page Street between Stanyan and Shrader until questioned by the membership in attendance. He claims to not have knowledge of the status of the current building other than that it will need to be sold to finance the new building on Fulton. When questioned further about the sale of the new building, Mr. Love commented that they have had discussions with interested parties including schools and commercial establishments (he named 24 Hour Fitness), but reiterated his disclaimer that he had no definitive knowledge about who the building would ultimately be sold to. He agreed, at the request of the membership, to more proactively engage with the neighborhood residents. HANC offered to even host a special meeting where the Boys and Girls Club leadership could inform and engage with the neighborhood. District 5 Supervisor London Breed was in attendance and suggested that she would lead an effort to request more comprehensive communication and planning between Boys and Girls Club and the neighborhood residents.
The Community CEQA Team, represented by Tes Welborn for HANC, has won some victories in the nine-month battle attempting to gut CEQA. Supervisor Weiner wanted to eliminate the public's current right to appeal projects at any point in a project, and succeeded in limiting appeals to the first time a project is approved. Because of Supervisor Kim's work with the Community Team, and then Supervisor Chiu's work, we did gain the right to appeal a major change to the Environmental Review Officer in a public, televised hearing. We also secured increased noticing, both on the Planning Dept.'s website and by informing those who request notices of neighborhood projects. Thanks to all whose letters helped the Community team's work!
By Bruce Wolfe, HANC Board Member At-Large and Eric Brooks,Our City Executive Director
In 2002 California passed the Community Choice law which allows cities and counties to join their electricity customers into community run cooperatives for the purpose of effectively building and purchasing clean energy sources to replace the energy provided to them through their private monopoly utility providers like PG&E.
Under Community Choice, transmission and distribution of electricity and line maintenance will still be provided by the monopoly utility, but the community cooperative decides where the power going over those lines will come from.
As our readers know, plots were assigned in January, 2012 for HANC’s Community Garden (Kezar Gardens) at 780 Frederick Street. Kezar Gardens was thriving throughout Spring, Summer, and Fall of 2012. After we were evicted in December, 2012, Kezar Gardens was bulldozed and paved over, to make way for Rec and Park’s Community Garden at the site.
So far, Rec and Park has built three large wooden storage boxes and 40 to 50 garden boxes. This past May, Rec and Park sent a survey to those on Rec and Park’s waiting list for the garden (those who had garden plots with HANC and wanted a plot in the new garden had to re-sign with Rec and Park to be placed at the bottom of the waiting list).
A public survey was circulated in July. The survey says that RPD expects the garden to open to the public in the summer of 2013. It also says that survey results will be available the week of August 19. Our guess is that garden plots might be assigned by late August, which would leave about a three-week growing season before the end of summer.
By Calvin Welch, HANC Board
The Haight-Ashbury is the home of another San Francisco first: the first parklet permit revoked. Martin Mack’s (web chat says its soon to be renamed “Joplin’s”) parklet, built to resemble an outsized suburban brick barbeque pit, sprung on an unsuspecting neighborhood in 2011, ended its checqured life in June when DPW revoked its permit.
The closing of the parklet should be a lesson for all who are interested: the privatization of public space is a risky business, especially when conceived as a mere extension of a business, done with little or no public involvement and failing a clear understanding of the law.
The bar owner thought he could simply extend his bar, smokers and drinkers included, to the street under the banner of being a trendy new “parklet”. He simply built the thing, seemingly designed on the run and un-burdened with any public discussion, with no clear understanding of the law governing smoking and drinking in public spaces. Other merchants tried to tell him that being built over a gutter he needed to give some design consideration to drainage. He didn’t and it soon showed (or, more correctly, smelled).
HANC’s June general meeting featured discussions with Jeff Adachi, San Francisco’s Public Defender, and Bevan Dufty, from the Mayor’s Office of HOPE (Housing Opportunity, Partnerships & Engagement). The discussion was moderated by HANC Board member Colleen Rivecca, who works with both the Homeless Youth Alliance and with St. Anthony’s, and has been actively advocating for more services in both the City and the State budgets. Mary Howe, Executive Director of the Homeless Youth Alliance, also participated in the discussions.
Jeff Adachi spoke about the services the Public Defender’s office provides to homeless individuals. The Public Defender’s office provides legal services to those charged with a crime who cannot afford a lawyer. This of course includes both people who have housing and those who don’t.
In January, the chronic inebriate program, also known as the chronic offender court, was determined to be unconstitutional. Under this system, anyone failing to appear on multiple citations issued by police could be charged with civil contempt of court and jailed for up to 150 days without a trial. The intent was to force homeless drinkers into jail-based treatment. Someone charged with a crime, such as disorderly conduct or drunk in public, has a right to jury trial. But under the chronic inebriate program, there was no right to a jury trial.
- Garden for the Environment - July Workshops
- May at HANC: Recology, 1500 Page, and Captain Corrales
- SFPD Chief Suhr Drops Proposal to Arm Officers with Tasers
- First Shock, Then a Fond Farewell to All You Knead
- Lively Discussion with Rec & Park at April HANC Meeting
- UCSF Forest Management Plan Stirs Debate