Elsewhere: City Hall Watch: Earthquake bond makes June ballot Ex, Daly cares more about inmates than cops Ex, Newsom wins fight over security legislation Ex, Daly’s jailhouse blues, Daly’s jailhouse blues Chron
San Francisco supervisors today approved a $412 million bond measure for the June 8 ballot that, if approved by voters, would authorize building a new police headquarters and implementing seismic upgrades to the city’s aging firefighting infrastructure.
The measure was approved this afternoon by a 9-1 vote of supervisors. It is also supported by police Chief George Gascon and fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White.
The bond would allocate funds for a new Public Safety Building in Mission Bay to house police command headquarters, the Southern District Police Station and a fire station; seismic upgrades to neighborhood fire stations; and seismic retrofits for the city’s firefighting water supply system.
Board president David Chiu, one of the measure’s main sponsors, called it “incredibly important,” citing a 60-percent chance of a major earthquake in the area within the next 30 years.
The San Francisco Hall of Justice, which contains the Southern police station, police headquarters, superior courts, county jail facilities and the district attorney’s office, has for years been deemed seismically deficient.
Police have said that in the event of a major earthquake or terrorist attack, police command could be cut off if the building were damaged, hampering a citywide emergency response.
Supervisor Chris Daly, the only dissenter in today’s vote, argued that the money might better go to rebuilding the county jails.
Chiu acknowledged that repairing the entire Hall of Justice complex was the goal, but the current cost estimate was over $1 billion, he said.
The current measure represented the “most effective, efficient” way to address the seismic problem given the economy, and the rest of the complex would hopefully be addressed at a later date, Chiu said.
The bond measure would require approval by a two-thirds majority of voters.
Also today, the board failed to overturn a veto by Mayor Gavin Newsom of a proposed law that would have required elected officials to reimburse the city for police security costs when campaigning outside the state, and would have required the Police Department to report security costs to the supervisors.
That measure was sponsored by Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, who argued today that it “sheds light on a budget that is not transparent.”
The board passed the legislation by a 7-3 margin last month, but Mayor Gavin Newsom vetoed it on Feb. 5. Today’s vote to overturn the veto was also 7-3, one vote shy of the amount needed.
Newsom and police Chief George Gascon have expressed concern that requiring city officials to reimburse the city for security might present a safety risk if they decide to go without it.
Gascon disclosed last year that the city spent nearly $2.1 million to protect Newsom, visiting dignitaries and other city officials.