Cash not care

Downtown groups are spending big money and making telling alliances in this election

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Downtown's money has filled local mailboxes with reams of campaign propaganda
PHOTO BY BEN HOPFER

sarah@sfbg.com

With the general election just days away, campaign disclosure reports show that downtown interests are spending huge amounts of money to create a more conservative San Francisco Board of Supervisors and to pass Proposition B, Public Defender Jeff Adachi's effort to make city workers pay more for their pensions and health insurance.

Much of the spending is coming from sources hostile to programs designed to protect tenants in the city, including rent control and limits on the conversion on rental housing units to condominiums. An ideological flip of the board, which currently has a progressive majority, could also have big implications on who becomes the next mayor if Gavin Newsom wins his race for lieutenant governor.

At press time, downtown groups were far outspending their progressive counterparts through a series of independent expenditure committees, most of which are controlled by notorious local campaign attorney Jim Sutton (see "The political puppeteer," 2/4/04) in support of supervisorial candidates Mark Farrell in District 2, Theresa Sparks in District 6, Scott Wiener in District 8, and Steve Moss in District 10.

Prop. B has also been a big recipient of downtown's cash, although labor groups have pushed back strongly with their own spending to try to kill the measure, which is their main target in this election.

But the biggest spender in this election appears to be Thomas J. Coates, 56, a major investor in apartments and mobile homes and a demonstrated enemy of rent control. He alarmed progressive groups by giving at least $250,000 to groups that support Farrell, Sparks, Wiener, Moss, and Prop. G, legislation that Sup. Sean Elsbernd placed on the ballot to cut transit operator wages and change Muni work rules.

Although Coates declines to identify with a political party on his voter registration, he donated $2,000 to President George W. Bush in 2004. More significantly, he was the biggest individual donor in California's November 2008 election, when he contributed $1 million to Prop. 98, which sought to repeal rent control in California and limit the government's right to acquire private property by eminent domain.

Coates, who is also a yachting enthusiast and sits on San Francisco's America's Cup Organizing Committee (ACOC), donated $100,000 on Oct. 20 for Farrell, $45,000 for Sparks, $45,000 for Moss, and $10,000 for Wiener through third-party independent expenditure committees such as the Alliance for Jobs and Sustainable Growth.

Comments

Because city workers have already agreed to pay their own retirement contributions in full, commencing July 01, 2011 [eight (8) months from now], it should be noted that regarding pension reform and prop b; very little money will be saved by forcing city workers to contribute their fair share a mere six [6] months prior to schedule.  

so apparently then, the "big savings" hoped for by attempting to pass this poorly thought out piece of written scapegoating and bullying must come from the lesser emphasized "healthcare" component.

in exchange for continued PREVENTIVE health care provisions to children or other needy legal dependant of the hard working city employee, the wealthy authors along with greedy bankroller venture capitalist and billionaire backers of this divisive proposition have opted to use this "hidden" aspect of HEALTHCARE CUTS to boost their "savings" figure which they shamelessly tout knowing full well that such drastic cuts will not only displace the most vulnerable, namely children and retirees needing healthcare who cannot otherwise afford PREVENTIVE healthcare but to also undermine the overall universal healthcare concept, which most San Franciscans recognize as smart and cost effective.

people, please see this for what it is and not for what it is not!  
cuts to PREVENTIVE healthcare at minimal savings to the city fund will end up costing us tax payers double, triple and quadruple -when REACTIVE healthcare like urgent care and emergency room services at the medical industry's skyrocketing rates and exorbitant costs and fees are factored in as the only remaining viable options for those no longer able to afford or qualify for any other type of reasonably priced medical coverage!  
please vote NO on B.

Posted by CJFIowers on Oct. 26, 2010 @ 11:23 pm

Because city workers have already agreed to pay their own retirement contributions in full, commencing July 01, 2011 [eight (8) months from now], it should be noted that regarding pension reform and prop b; very little money will be saved by forcing city workers to contribute their fair share a mere six [6] months prior to schedule.  

so apparently then, the "big savings" hoped for by attempting to pass this poorly thought out piece of written scapegoating and bullying must come from the lesser emphasized "healthcare" component.

in exchange for continued PREVENTIVE health care provisions to children or other needy legal dependant of the hard working city employee, the wealthy authors along with greedy bankroller venture capitalist and billionaire backers of this divisive proposition have opted to use this "hidden" aspect to boost their "savings" figure which they shamelessly tout knowing full well that such drastic cuts will not only displace the most vulnerable, namely children and retirees needing healthcare who cannot otherwise afford PREVENTIVE healthcare but to also undermine the overall universal healthcare concept, which most San Franciscans recognize as smart and cost effective.

people, please see this for what it is and not for what it is not!  
cuts to PREVENTIVE healthcare at minimal savings to the city fund will end up costing us tax payers double, triple and quadruple -when REACTIVE healthcare like urgent care and emergency room services at the medical industry's skyrocketing rates and exorbitant costs and fees are factored in as the only remaining viable options for those no longer able to qualify for any other type of reasonably priced medical coverage!  
please vote NO on B.

Posted by CJFIowers on Oct. 26, 2010 @ 11:35 pm

This information is 2 years out of date, I think it applies to the 2008 election.(it's 2010)

Posted by ! Facts on Oct. 27, 2010 @ 11:19 am

Which information are you referring to, ! Facts? The information in our article is for 2010.

Posted by sarah on Oct. 27, 2010 @ 11:35 am
LOL

It's the same old song but The Guardian never gets tired of singing it. Proudly voicing the exact same rhetoric for going on 45 years now.

Posted by Lucretia Snapples on Oct. 27, 2010 @ 4:17 pm