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tv   [untitled]    May 17, 2012 7:30pm-8:00pm PDT

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you are existing or a new applicant. i will call you up in the order you are listed on the agenda. i did get e-mail from several folks who did not make it today -- we did have one who has withdrawn his application. that is khurshid khoja. we do appreciate your brevity. >> thank you. a lawyer with brevity. i am ben rosenfeld. i am a lawyer of 12 years and a san francisco resident for 13. before that time, i was in
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private practice. i focused mostly on civil rights, and within that arena, mostly section 1983 civil rights work, bringing cases related to first and fourth amendment rights. i have done a certain amount of open government related practice. cases for the california public records act. i appeared as an attorney before the sunshine task force and i relied very heavily on open the government's -- open government laws. in addition, i am an original board member of a committee that is 8 years old.
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i have had a lot of experience as an administrator, essentially as a small-business owner. i do operate my own law office. i have tried hard over the years to make it predominantly and electronic office. best chance me in good stead. -- that stands me in good stead for next generation practices for providing electronic means for access and preservation. i will be happy to entertain any questions. supervisor kim: thank you. there are no questions. doug comcast. comstock. my apologies. >> first of all, i am grateful to the society for professional journalists for putting forth my name. i am a member of that organization. i was alarmed we had so many
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people dropping out of the sunshine task force, and i think i made a frantic call to supervisor kim's office. i hope i didn't frighten you too much. there was a time when i thought we were going to lose almost everyone. we have some members that are staying on, and i recommend those people -- they have all done an excellent job. they all have a niche in the sunshine task force. i am proud to say that it is still going and going strong. i served as chair of the sunshine task force for three years.
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i had excellent attendance. i do think for my priorities, we need a better outreach and education. i think the sunshine task force should craft its own sunshine training and not rely on the city attorney's training. is a difficult thing for employees to navigate -- not just because they do not know what they can give, what they have to cross it out. there should be a goat to guide somewhere -- go-to guide summer. will set up and find out what they need to comply with sunshine requests. it should not be as difficult as it is. i am a journalist. in the publisher of "the west side observer." i am committed to sunshine. i believe it is a civil rights. i look forward to working on
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that committee if you approve me. are there any questions? supervisor kim: the questions at this time. >> thank you. supervisor kim: next we have michael kwan. >> hello, supervisors. i am currently the media manager at the center for asian micro media. i develop mobile apps to encourage more asian americans and to vote. i am interested in this task force, because i am interested in getting more people into this political process. i previously we worked for a website that worked with underserved populations, and i saw the need as a community manager to better engage with our user base. at the same time, i saw the need to expand beyond that audience,
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to reach people who needed translation and to -- and who may not be available because of work. i actually am chairing with a group that empowers and engages young voters. this past year, i started becoming more interested in politics when i found a coat hanger outside my apartment -- i started participating in these town halls and policies and solutions that make up our city. i was actually involved briefly with supervisor david chiu's race for mayor. i joined the board of asian
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pacific americans for progress. and so, as someone from the nonprofit rome, and someone who uses social media and web tools every day, i believe i can use technologies in our city to create solutions to extend transparency and access data. so, with that, if you have any questions, i am happy to answer them. supervisor kim: thank you, michael. next we have kitt grant. >> good afternoon. my name is kitt grant. i am here to be considered as a new appointee for the sunshine task force. i am a tv producer. i currently work for current television. i am a born and bred san
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franciscan. i went to ucla and came back to san francisco where i got my master's in communication. i have been gone the past 10 years to better my experience in media as a producer. i have worked at the national cbs news, abc news, and i have been producing those kinds of news shows awhile. i bring a global perspective, a national perspective of what the political process is, understanding from that angle. i love san francisco, i love the diversity of san francisco. being part of this task force will give me an opportunity to be a participant. what i bring it will help everybody with is the fact that i understand media, both sides try to get information as well as on the other side.
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i have told us on many people's stories and have had some much experience with the public that it is important to have people that represent the people of the city. san francisco university has african americans, latino, that is very important. it is important to be a participant and part of the program that will help everyone. any questions? supervisor kim: not at this time. next we have pixie chopra and marc bruno. >> i have worked as a public policy researcher and i have conducted interviews with government agencies.
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focus groups with the clients -- the purpose was to ensure that immigrants were receiving services like health care, education, and affordable housing. the objective is to provide a transparency between the service provider and the people that we serve. we found out that there is a lot of fear in the immigrant communities and we this -- constructed lecra. mental health, affordable housing, and distrust of the police were consistent issues. i have served as the political awareness chair. i have conducted discussions between elected officials and members of the south asian community. ranging from a variety of issues
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like public housing. i currently work as an ethnic media journalist which is a newspaper that has been in the area for 38 years. we cover a variety of stories for the south asian community. the goal has been to connect groups with opposing interests. i have seen time and time again, we will bring our skills to further the goal of the sunshine taskforce. if you have questions, i am happy to answer them. >> next is marc bruno and suzanne manneh.
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>> i have worked as a sundace fellow and i have produced a film based the true life story of a little boy that died, a story about organ donation. since returning to san francisco in 2000, i have expanded my work to chinatown and to the financial district. i started as a volunteer for the less employed for the last four years. there are two projects in particular that i would like to see completed. specifically, i believe that the sunshine ordinance could be
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implemented at the permanent level with the health of lots of people. like the students currently working with the center for government and also students for san francisco state that have been incorporated in our neighborhood. it was a group helped by the mayor's office. these students were the ones that set up the meetings and established the agenda. the research for us sponsored a town hall meeting. they have the inspiration and the time to go to the departments as volunteers and do what was intended by the original 1999 proposition. what that means, instead of having custodians of black bird,
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we would have these people working that would be volunteers who whether in cooperation with other volunteers were trained by the sunshine ordnance taskforce. each of the department's is a citizen, a volunteer citizen committed to transparency. if we look at the budget analysis, we see that they're spending a lot of money. more importantly, the educator. first themselves and other people their age to claim the virtues of government transparency and dispersal of records. most recently, i think of
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something from the planning department. there is a resistance there because the person as an employee of the department. in that case, i wanted a very simple document. it was only five pages. instead of the planner, and give me the document, and that is what is intended by proposition 8 in 1999, it says that every single employee, every single person that has document is called the custodian of records. it is not supposed to be a special person in the department that is the only person they go to. what happens in the planning department is that they were not controversial were secretive, but they wanted to make sure it was ok with the custodian of
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records. i don't think it has to be that way. it engenders mistrust and cost a lot of time and money. we would find a group of volunteers that are enthusiastic about spreading the good word of free speech and transparency. that is my project. supervisor kim: thank you, mr. bruno. next is suzanne manneh and allyson washburn. >> my name is allyson washburn, i was president of the lead in the mid-90s. i am applying for my third term
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as the league of women voters seat on the task force. i have been share of the task force committee -- committee. i was on the education outreach and training committee. i have been very much involved in helping to draft amendments to the ordinance that we hope to put forward before long. i have been active working with the ethics commission to help their policies for enforcing the ordinance. those are efforts that i am very much involved in that i would continue working on. i am also interested in an
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effort to help city departments comply with the ordinance through education. i was intrigued by the previous speakers, we can come up with ideas to make it easier for people to comply with the ordinance. i want to take one minute to urge you to not only reappoint me, there is no competition from my seat, but i would like you to strongly consider reappointing the incumbents. member wolf, manneh, frank cosjay costa. some institutional memory is very important.
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>> it was brought to my attention, i understand the sunshine ordnance task force had passed an amendment about your voting requirements. all of our bodies to have to vote in the majority to approve something. you change it to beat a majority of members present at any given meeting. i am wondering if you can explain that and talk about it a little bit? >> i was on a committee that discussed this and researched it. i have to say that i remember that we changed that. i know that we are aware of what is customarily done in the city. we did our research, we did not have the rationale before me that would be available in the
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minutes. >> our city charter mandates this and you passed for your own rules? i am just curious why it happened. >> we did this because we have a large body, 11 members. for some time, it was difficult for us to get a quorum and to keep a quorum. they sometimes run six or seven hours. and we would have maybe seven members present, virtually everybody would have to vote one way or the other to pass any motion at all.
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we felt really hampered and we feel that it is our charge to the extent possible, further protect the rights of the members of the public that have come before us. in a fair hearing, members of the public were telling us that we have to convince every single person present zero ways to have a finding in our favor. we did this to address what we felt was a significant problem. we have also change the bylaws to make sure that we have sanctions. we want to try to deal with that
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problem as well. i think they will tell you i have very good attendance. >> this is a slippery slope, right? if the board of supervisors did this, we would be rightfully scorned. of only those that were on it, why this happened? it's because people are not showing up, that is a different issue, but it makes it more difficult to get the right amount of people to vote. but that is the rule, that is the city charter. people public comment all the time on the board. you need a majority of that board. >> in my defense, we are all
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volunteers and we give up that time. we have one wonderful staff person. i want to assure you that we did not do this lightly. we did not change this rule with a disregard for what is in place. like i said, i can't reconstruct the reasoning. perhaps another member can do that, maybe you -- they can help me out here. brecht's supervisor campos, this is probably not addressed -- >> supervisor campos, this is probably not addressed to you. >> can the sunshine task force to make a motion to disregard the charter legally? cracks through the chair, no, it has been our position and our guys that they cannot. >> what i would say is -- and i
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am a strong supporter of the sunshine task force and sunshine in general, and continue to be -- i understand the reasoning behind that, but i do not been that is how you address issues about not having a quorum and not having enough people show up to a body like this. i think the way to address that is to make sure that those of us on the board of supervisors, the rules committee, the mayor's office, that we are aware that is happening and if people are not showing up, then people need to be replaced. but legally, and in terms of the charter, the charter is the constitution of the people and city and county of san francisco. and that constitution cannot be set aside by any government body. it is unfortunate that happen to -- happened, certainly not
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something that any of us, legally or otherwise can act. cracks i have a copy of a memo from the -- >> i have a copy of a memo from the advisory task force and this was from last year. this was written advice as well. i agree with what supervisor campos said, that we are not allowed to legally or ethically skirt these laws. that is why -- my question, why the task force did that. thank you for your response. >> i just want to chime in that i did not know about this. i agree with my colleagues. if the issue with a quorum issue, that we need to talk about the structure of the task force rather than violate the city charter. it is the case that we need to reduce the size of the task
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force, then we need to figure out a structure within which the ordinands can run. i anders stand that as an all volunteer body, you are not paid to be there. but there needs to be a discussion about how we change the way the task force administers their meetings if quorum is an issue rather than violate the city charter. thank you, supervisor, for bringing that up. i did get an e-mail from suzann stating that she would not be able to be here today. next we have mark, who cannot be here today. then i will call [unintelligible] and then david. >> good afternoon, supervisors. i have my own business. i will be able to attend these long meetings. this should not be an issue. i hope to offer fresh
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perspective is selected. this is my second appearance before this committee for this position. it was previously in march of last year when supervisor elsbernd was closet -- was kind enough to nominate me. since then, i was actively following politics, going to fund raisers and events and recent elections. i've had the fortune of traveling extensively as a child. my father was a career diplomat, ambassador to the united nations, and i've lived in many countries, including sudan, turkey, bangladesh, and oman. i speak several languages and relate to people from all walks of life. i am myself multi-cultural operative and irish-american father and a turkish mother. i attended georgetown university
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and got my mba at johns hopkins. i was fortunate enough to work in the legal field. i think that will be an asset in helping to navigate the detailed material that i have seen on any task force cases. i moved to san francisco seven years ago and i have owned a house and the mission to the last three years. i'm here to stay and i would like to give back to this beautiful city that i now call home. professionally, i am an experienced recruiter, and a chart -- an hr professional. i worked in an industry that is highly regulated by compliance requirements, special regards, and the companies competing for the government contracts are required to be increasingly transparent. my motivation in volunteering for the position in particular
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is that it appears to be all encompassing. i am politically independent and not aligned with any special interest groups and i possess strong skills in diplomacy, qualities i believe are necessary for this task force. transparent governance in the public sector is becoming increasingly important in today's world. i cannot think of a better place for this task force to start what will hope -- what i hope will be a long record of service to the city. in addition, i still see that the task force meetings are not televised. i think this is very important as a body of work. i look forward to working with your appointee on this very issue. thank you. >> thank you for being here before us again.