Friday, August 24, 2012

D5 Sup. Candidate London Breed
Asked to Explain Sunshine Opinions

London Breed is a San Francisco native who currently sits on the SF Fire Commission, serves as state Attorney General Kamala Harris' proxy to the Democratic County Central Committee and is also the executive director of the African American Arts and Culture Complex, and she's running for the District 5 Haight seat on the Board of Supervisors. In June, I asked what she thought about moving the commission meetings to a location where they could be broadcast on SF Gov TV, to bring some much-needed transparency to the panel. Like a good pol, she take a vague position:

I am supportive of exploring the option to move fire commission meetings to City Hall and placing them on public access television. 

Doesn't sound like she's too excited to get those meetings on TV. I send the following questions to her more than a week ago, and unfortunately, I have not heard back from her. Maybe posting the questions here will prod a response from her:

I'd like to follow up on this statement of yours from June, saying you are interested in exploring potentially moving SF Fire Department Commission meetings to City Hall, where they would be broadcast on SFGov TV. If  you can answer these questions, that would be appreciated.

1. What steps can you take before the election to explore the option of holding the fire commission meetings at City Hall?

2. It's my understanding that the meeting room at SFFD headquarters on Second Street is not equipped with TV cameras, and that is why the commission meetings are not currently broadcast on SFGov TV. Is that correct?

3. A few members of the public feel the current location of the commission meetings is isolated and not easily accessible via public transit or as centrally located as city hall where the police commission meets. Do you agree?

4. What arguments would you make for putting the fire commission meetings on an equal footing as the police commission meeting, held at City Hall, full of public comment and aired on SFGov TV?

5. Minutes from fire commission meetings rarely show any member of the general public in attendance and using public comment time. Many minutes show public comments occasionally from the fire union or folks connected to the department, like former fighters. Can you point to any minutes where one or two members of the general public spoke?

6. In terms of city wide sunshine, are you aware that the Sunshine Ordinance Task Force is not meeting this month because they are not in compliance with the requirement to have a disabled member?

7. How would you make sunshine/open government principles a key part of your D5 campaign?

8. Sunshine advocates believe the Ethics Commission and City Attorney are very lax in enforcing rulings from the SOTF against city agencies and employees. How would you, as the D5 supervisor, bring about enforcement of all SOTF rulings?

9. In general, what your views on how best to expand sunshine at City Hall and educate San Francisco residents about sunshine principles and the SOTF?

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