tv [untitled] May 14, 2011 9:30am-10:00am PDT
are the responsibility of the property owner. i have a couple of trees and of my house and it is my job to keep them well maintained. some streets in san francisco -- for no reason, the city maintains those trees. i am responsible to maintain my trees, my neighbor -- the responsibility is done by the city. we have three crews responsible for maintaining tens of thousands of street trees in san francisco. the three of them cover the whole city and this is an adequate for us to do this. we are supposed to do this every three-five years but with the resources that we have an only do this every 10-12 years. these go on to the backlog west, and this can take us years
to get to those trees. we prioritize the safety issues first and we may not have the resources to do this. we want to relinquish this responsibility back to private property owners, this would be more equitable and more fiscally sustainable. there is a long answer to a short question. >> if anybody has questions that they would like task, we have speaker cards. i will do my best to get the mayor -- >> this is for community partners, united. four times of tight budgets with unified school district, how can the city in the san francisco unified school district elaborate partnerships for services such as family health and mental health services. in this area, when i came into office, the board of education
was contemplating shutting down or consolidating six of the eight schools in the area. if it was not for the people in this room and others, who came to the defense of the schools, they would have been shut down. i want to say how proud i am of the people in this area. to provide a community and community support system that had grown thin over the years. many of these schools -- they have rebounded because of the partnerships that are exhibited by many people here. i thought i would ask her -- >> the question is, how do we support more after-school programs in schools? last year -- and reduce the duplication of services. last year, the department went
through a very competitive process of selecting agencies to provide after-school programs and services. we did this with the school districts. we went to the school district and we said that all of these after-school programs receiving state funding, we want to leverage enhance these programs. what had happened is that you would have a couple of after- school programs. one of them was run by the school district and the other by community partners. last year, we said this did not make sense. and that this was not efficient. we figure out a way to just have one after-school program, where they would see the state funding, and they would bring in the money to expand the capacity, and increase the quality of the after-school program. this is the first year that we did this.
we believe that this increased opportunities for families wanting afterschool services. we were able to free up some money, for these programs. the cultural enrichment programs and other services for those schools. >> if there are any other members of the city who want to weigh in, please signal. just let me know. this is a question, how can we make certain that the gains that we have made in the fifth district on public safety, with economic vitality and policing, that this continues despite the budget cuts. it would be a good idea to have the representatives of the police department, the captain, along with others. >> i think the captain is a great job at the northern
station. she will not go anywhere. there are efficiencies that we could use to make up for what we may lose to retirements. this is a major issue but i met with the mayor just yesterday in making certain that the public safety does not suffer in any way as we go through the budget crunch. we will do whatever we have to do. she would like to say a couple of things. she has a lot of great initiatives that are planned. >> recently, we put together an emergency -- an emerging neighborhood group -- you can give me your e-mail and i will send you the actual invitation. it is through these partnerships that we will continue these efforts. we cannot do this alone, and the police cannot maintain the public safety alone.
we need the public family, all in the fold and reducing crime, i cannot emphasize this enough. this is the partnership and working together. forming cohesive neighborhood groups. and if you live in a neighborhood like this and you are not involved in some kind of neighborhood group, reached out to your neighbors. i am certain that they are involved. >> i want to go ahead and invite the housing authority, and human services agency. district 5 is home to one of the largest populations with public housing and housing cooperatives. this is because of the era of redevelopment, and some of this is because of economic challenge. with regard to issues of public safety, and impoverishment,
neglect of this area, we should hear from other parties as well. >> i am from the housing authority. let me be brief. we have a directed police force operating within the public housing. i do not expect for this to change. we have a great relationship with them an i am asking for more resources to do more of this. we want to make certain that this happens. we want the communities to be safe and i see no change in any of that in the immediate future or near future. >> this is working. >> one of the biggest concerns that we have -- is the impact at the state level for families in san francisco. we see some reductions in
sacramento. some people may see the grant cut in half, others by 25%. this will be heading in july. we were successful with federal money, getting a lot of families into the work force with a jobs program. we had over 12,000 families paid with federal money. we will continue the program. we have a target of 1000 families, targeted for the same source of jobs in the private and public sector. and we will partner with agencies throughout the city, as well as reaching out to the public housing residents to get them engaged. >> and is there anyone else who wants to weigh in?
this is from rose hill soon. this is the plan for japan town. since the agency funding has been disintegrating, completely for the project area, there has been an ongoing planning process -- and neighborhood planning process to envision what the next iteration of what this will look like, in the world of the redevelopment. this is an important area plan to the community, and of course around the district. we have to make certain that there will actually be follow- through and delivery for this particular plan. sure the city departments will be held accountable? would you like to take a shot at this? >> i will stand up here with
paul from planning as well. first off, i sat in to get updated on that very plan several weeks ago. in between, it is not an excuse, but the reality is the year earthquake in japan happened, the tsunami happened, and we got interrupted because we have not had time to come back. i did commit to supervisor mirkarimi and members of the planning committee that i would be back. i am reviewing that plan and the objectives that were stated. following up with our planning department, as well as our office of economic development, to put together a more disciplined response so that we cannot suffer some interruptions we have had before and keep that process going. i don't have all the details because we have been responding to some of the issues that have occurred. and so out of the time
considerations, we have not been able to connect up with the next steps we have. we are committed to doing so. >> thank you, mr. mayor. i just wanted to say that one of the themes you have heard thus far tonight is partnership. what is going on in japantown in terms of the ongoing planning process is truly a partnership. the community is largely taking the lead in that partnership right now. on the tables behind, when you signed in, there was a pink flyer that was handed out. we will be engaging with the greater community about the future of japan town and responses to that better neighborhoods plan. i can assure you that the plan we are working closely with the dead -- the community to development will have implementation as one of its central considerations. we will do everything we can to make sure that planning supports
it with appropriate zoning and controls to ensure the success the mayor has talked about and the economic vitality for japantown into the future. i wanted to stress that this could not be done without a true city partnership with the community itself. >> ok. there are a number of cards are received where people want to make statements. i am going to leave some minutes toward the end of the meeting for people to make statements themselves. i will not read the statement. you can do that yourself. this is from a concerned citizen. the executive director of the housing authority has been laying off union labor laws sanitary conditions suffered greatly as a direct result of these layoffs. it is known that more are coming. are you aware of how bad conditions are for the tenants in this present state?
i am sure both a director alvarez and mr. mayor would like to respond. >> well, i have actually been looking at a lot of housing authority properties that have been improving. we have been working closely together with our department. there are many weeks where dtw, the police department, and the housing authority are working closer together than the whole history of that relationship has been. some of you know, my history in the past, i have been paying focused attention. from the businesses i have had, they have improved. not only have they improved, they have improved to the point where hud recognizes the problems they sought two years ago, before we came aboard, were
corrected. i am committed to doing that. we may have a difference of opinion about the conditions. i would be glad to talk with you about that. i am working closely with mr. alvarez on this and making sure all the sites improve while we go into an improvement and a rebuilding mode on many of the sites. >> thank you very much. the mayor is being modest. let me say that the mayor and i, when we first met, we went into the site so i would have a clearer understanding of what conditions were with a shovel and a trash bag. he assisted me in cleaning it out. we did that with everyone. let me mention to you that our property has improved by approximately 15%. as many of you are aware, the federal budget, which is where these 99: 9% of our funding comes from, is being constrained
or being cut. for the housing authority, that is about $6 million for us. even though we have received those kinds of cuts, we have been able to improve the quality of our public housing properties by more than 15%. we have done it enough where hud agreed to relieve us of the status of our housing. in terms of are represented labor, and some point, we have to ask for concessions everywhere we can get them. we have to save paper clips and pencils and paper and do things more efficiently and better. at some point, we have to look at the overall cost of our labor. to some extent, that will require that we make some adjustment to our labour force. it does not appear that those will be large numbers. but, it likely, if these broad
cuts from the federal level continue to come down, we will have to make some minor adjustments in our labour force. >> there are several questions hear from people, several different people, apart -- regarding public health concerns. one is from ms. hanson, one from larry nelson. one of the themes is about substance abuse and treatment centers. the city has done a solid job of providing substance-abuse treatment centers. these seem to be on the chopping block due to budget cuts. their concerns that the gains that have been made in helping people turn around the lives, especially in the sector, will now be undermined. how can the department of public health and the city justify these cuts? next, with regard to the "-- closure of community health
centers, what is the plan to compensate for that health care need with that perspective closure, not just for residents of district 5, but in the surrounding areas where there is the greatest economic disadvantaged communities? >> hello. i am gregg, the chief finance officer for the health department. let me put this into context. the health department has the largest budget in the city. we have the largest amount of general funds. as a consequence, we are given the largest budget reduction target each year. as much as we would prefer not to have to make any reductions at all, if we don't participate with the mayor and the board of supervisors in finding solutions to the budget deficit, the city cannot close its deficit.
we were given a target of $70 million, and a reduction target of $70 million. i'm happy to report that we have covered 60 million of that. $70 million without any reduction in services at all. we have worked hard to improve our revenue picture. we have looked for efficiencies in the department. we could not close the entire deficit army the full target. $7 million, the last $10 million is going to result in -- we are proposing reductions. in looking at our mental health and substance-abuse services, to begin with, the city of san francisco and the public health department provide far more services on a per capita basis than any other county in california. by a very large factor.
most counties don't provide substance abuse services at all in most counties provide very limited mental health services. we're providing hundreds of millions of dollars in those areas and have done it for many years. it is a priority for us and a priority for the city. the reductions we are proposing constitute about 2% of our total spending for mental health and substance abuse. we are not making deep cuts as a percentage of our total investment. however, these cuts will impact outpatient substance abuse, residential substance abuse services, and mental health services. we have been meeting weekly with our community providers who provide most of those services. we have been meeting with the mayor's office and with members of the board of supervisors. we have been completely transparent about all of the
proposals we were making and we are working hard with our community partners to find the most effective solutions, to find a way to meet our target with the least harm to the public. saying that, we realize that the problems that we are trying to solve with our services don't go away just because we pull funding away. the problems are still there and they manifest themselves in different ways. all we can do is work with our budget within the health department and try and find solutions. once the budget leaves the health department and goes to the board of supervisors, they can look across the options and choices to try to find other savings other ways to provide health services. we are at the point where we are handing back process of to our mayor and the board of supervisors. we are hopeful that some, hopefully all of the cuts we're proposing, can be restored.
thanks. >> here is the real supervisor, my son. he just turned two last week. i have several cards. can you say hello? hello? say hi. no. oh my god. thank you. i have several cards and related to revenue generating strategies to the mayor and the rest of the city. what new revenue-generating strategies or other sources of revenue that may have not been tried or may be retried can we expect to help us get out of this budget hole? a second category of questions, there are a number of businesses in the fillmore and in japan
town, small businesses, that are struggling to stay alive and suffering. what can the city do to help those businesses stay afloat and be able to really endure this economic downturn? what kind of help can they get from the city to turn around some of the depressed times? maybe mr. mayor or mr. wagner. >> thanks. i will touch on the revenue issue and turn it over to the mayor. there are a lot of initiatives that we are pursuing aggressively on the revenue side. some of them are traditional revenues. some of them are revenues you would not necessarily think of when you think of pursuing revenues. as greg from the health department said, we have been very aggressive in pursuing new ways to drawdown state and federal money. over the past two years, this year included, we will be able
to say that we generated an additional almost $200 million in federal money, part of that from the stimulus, part of that through programs in the city, to help prevent cuts to our local services. so, we're being very aggressive on revenues. rec and park has a strategy of pursuing revenue options. some of them are difficult decisions. they prioritize revenue over reductions. we have been working with the supervisors, working with the city family, to look at what options are available. the mayor is working on a general-obligation bond. hopefully for the november ballot, it will save us some general fund street repaving dollars. we are looking at what our other options are that we are allowed
to do under state law. there is some limit as to what we are able to do. we are looking hard at all our options. >> as mentioned, as you may have heard, we relaunched the jobs program just three weeks ago. he can go into detail with anybody here. we wanted to aim it at small businesses. they can take advantage of this jobs now program with funding that is available to help you hire and pay for employees to the tune of some $5,000. that could pay for employees for small businesses up to probably around two or three months in
their first three months of working for you. that is the program we have now. we still have between 300 up to 500 slots of jobs. you have to hire from a qualified working pool. trent can talk with you here tonight if you take advantage of that. we also have a small business commission. regina is not here tonight. we are working closer with other ideas and frankly, we need your input. i don't have all the answers to small-business and what is going to help you not only stay afloat, but help you get more customers here. i do know some basic things. if we keep reducing the homicide rate, as we have done in the last few years, you will have more customers. thanks to the partnership between the police department and all of your involvement, that reduction has been
extremely helpful for the business. i would be welcome to engage folks tonight if you own our business to talk with you specifically about it. i am trying to put some money into the improvement programs, trying to get some of the big businesses in the city to put some funds in to help small businesses create that relationship. other ideas we have, we are very open and i am working with the small business commission to come up with better ideas, something specific to address areas. i will be very open to talk with you after this. >> thank you, mr. mayor. i have a number of cards and related to the recreation and parks department. where we are at right now, the hamilton rec center, we commemorate another rehab of this about a year and a half, two years ago. i was so excited about the swimming pool that i cut the ribbon to the slide and went down it in my suit.
it was wonderful. we have the coolest public swimming pool, one of the coolest in the whole city. it is a fantastic tool. what has made hamilton so successful at is the people who work here and the community that has swelled around it. there have been some staff changes. according to some citizens out there, they're concerned about some of the staff changes, in particular, a gentleman, jerry jack, and others, who you might want to talk about. some of the changes -- 1 card that i pulled out is people are very excited about the improvements in campbell, but with those improvements have come a new regulation of the fields. some of the teams and some of the activities do not seem to reflect district 5 activities. they seem to me more regulated for teams that, elsewhere. some people feel a bit of a loss
of that relationship to that particular field. maybe you could speak a little to that, please. [applause] >> thank you, supervisor. good evening. acting superintendent of recreation and community services for rec and park. first question, our department went through a total change of how we offer recreation programs here in the city. that happened august 14 of 2010. with that, we actually had to lay off approximately 74 recreation directors. we were able to hire back a number of folks as coordinators'. they were facility-side and programming city-wide side. any plan that you have, and i believe it has been a successful plan, but where you have to lay off that many people, it is not a perfect plan. i was a kid who grew up in the excelsior district.
i counted on a recreation director to be my father. it meant everything to me. when we had to lay off folks that are the common faces in your facilities that you can relate to on a daily basis, we understand that impact. what we are trying to do is hire some folks back as our budget recovers a little bit. we have been able to generate a lot of revenue. we have prioritized revenue over cuts. we are looking to hire, and faces again. jerry jack came up. he was a recreation director here. we are looking to hire him in a different capacity so that he can be back here at the center. i know that we are waiting for some position authority in order to have an after-school position here. he would be one of those folks we would be looking at to fill that position. he has been a recreation leader, which is a part-time position, which i understand people want