lee.debate.jpgYesterday we (and SFist, and the Ex and CBS5) reminded you that as of January 1, San Francisco’s minimum wage would be rising to $10.24, making it the highest in the country. But though you, as a loyal Appeal reader were now aware of this change to local policy, there’s someone who wasn’t — Mayor Ed Lee.

In 2003, 60% of voters passed Proposition L, which required SF to increase the city’s minimum wage every year to reflect inflation. That means, as we noted yesterday, SF’s hourly minimum wage will rise from $9.92 to $10.24 as of January 1, 2012.

However, when KCBS asked Mayor Lee about this yesterday, he was way less clear on the concept than the rest of us.

As you can hear from the audio report, when the change to minimum wage was brought up, Lee asked reporter Mike Sugarman “It’s a few cents, right?”

When Sugarman told Lee that it was going up to $10.24, Lee said “Wow…I want to study all that impact first and see how people feel.”

“But the law’s going into effect!” Sugarman informed Lee.

“Ah, OK, I’ll have to pay attention to that.” Lee said in response.

And pay attention Lee apparently did — at 11 this morning, his press office sent out a press release headed “MAYOR LEE ANNOUNCES INCREASE TO SAN FRANCISCO’S MINIMUM WAGE.”

In the release, Lee is quoted as saying “This wage increase will help the City’s lowest paid workers to keep pace with inflation and also protect consumer spending of San Francisco’s working families, which will be a boost to our local economic recovery efforts.”

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the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at eve@sfappeal.com.

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  • salsaman

    Using that unflattering photo of Mayor Lee unnecessarily editorializes news pieces.

  • salsaman

    Using that unflattering photo of Mayor Lee unnecessarily editorializes news pieces.

  • Greg Dewar

    “Salsaman” that is bullshit. What, should the news organization only use perfect airbrushed pictures of Dear Leader? What’s the matter, upset your cutiepie mustasche mayor is such a dumbass he doesn’t even know what the laws are of the city he is now “mayor” of?

    Just admit you supported a puppet who is in over his head, who was elected by 31% of the people in an election with low turnout and supported with shady out of town donations who is a joke. There are no pictures of Dear Leader Ed Lee that look good enough to cover that ugliness up, so stop picking on the Appeal’s choices for photos.

  • Greg Dewar

    “Salsaman” that is bullshit. What, should the news organization only use perfect airbrushed pictures of Dear Leader? What’s the matter, upset your cutiepie mustasche mayor is such a dumbass he doesn’t even know what the laws are of the city he is now “mayor” of?

    Just admit you supported a puppet who is in over his head, who was elected by 31% of the people in an election with low turnout and supported with shady out of town donations who is a joke. There are no pictures of Dear Leader Ed Lee that look good enough to cover that ugliness up, so stop picking on the Appeal’s choices for photos.

  • robotsongs

    Greg, you’re a douche. I dislike Lee as much as the next guy (why the voters kept this idiot in is simply beyond me) but using that photo sways the reader, subconsciously or not, to have a negative reaction to the subject without even reading a word, seriously biasing the reader’s consumption of the material. This is Media101 level stuff. While you may agree with the editorialization, it’s as respectable (to the reader) as when Fox puts up pictures of Obama with his eyes closed and his mouth open to make him look full-retard. I don’t know if that’s the goal of Ms. Batey to add the political slant, but since they run this photo with every story about Lee, it sure takes the credibility of the site down a notch.

    I prefer to make come to my own conclusions, thank you.

  • robotsongs

    Greg, you’re a douche. I dislike Lee as much as the next guy (why the voters kept this idiot in is simply beyond me) but using that photo sways the reader, subconsciously or not, to have a negative reaction to the subject without even reading a word, seriously biasing the reader’s consumption of the material. This is Media101 level stuff. While you may agree with the editorialization, it’s as respectable (to the reader) as when Fox puts up pictures of Obama with his eyes closed and his mouth open to make him look full-retard. I don’t know if that’s the goal of Ms. Batey to add the political slant, but since they run this photo with every story about Lee, it sure takes the credibility of the site down a notch.

    I prefer to make come to my own conclusions, thank you.

  • LisaLaggrrr

    Like it is possible to realistically live in SF even at $10.24 an hour!

  • LisaLaggrrr

    Like it is possible to realistically live in SF even at $10.24 an hour!

  • Digidave

    @Salsman @Robotsongs
    I understand your criticism – but I think you are blowing it out of proportion. It’s not like the photo shows Ed Lee with no pants on. He’s just making a silly grin. In fact, it’s a grin that says “uhhh…. yea…. that’s the ticket!” I think the photo fits the news.

  • Digidave

    @Salsman @Robotsongs
    I understand your criticism – but I think you are blowing it out of proportion. It’s not like the photo shows Ed Lee with no pants on. He’s just making a silly grin. In fact, it’s a grin that says “uhhh…. yea…. that’s the ticket!” I think the photo fits the news.

  • Aaron Sankin

    Ed Lee is not a guy who photographs well. Not to say that he’s hideous or anything like that, but he’s certainly a dude with a tendency to look goofy in photographs. If the Appeal wanted to use a picture of the Mayor looking ridiculous they could have used this one (http://images.politico.com/global/news/111028_ed_lee_ap_605.jpg), or this one (http://www.sanfranciscosentinel.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/ed-lee-aug-7-1.jpg) or my personal favorite (http://www3.pictures.zimbio.com/gi/San+Francisco+Mayor+Ed+Lee+Attends+Topping+Ww3QxgO8pP-l.jpg). In the grand scheme of Ed Lee pictures, that one’s pretty even-handed. The one used here isn’t actually all that far off from the one on the cover his campaign biography.

  • Aaron Sankin

    Ed Lee is not a guy who photographs well. Not to say that he’s hideous or anything like that, but he’s certainly a dude with a tendency to look goofy in photographs. If the Appeal wanted to use a picture of the Mayor looking ridiculous they could have used this one (http://images.politico.com/global/news/111028_ed_lee_ap_605.jpg), or this one (http://www.sanfranciscosentinel.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/ed-lee-aug-7-1.jpg) or my personal favorite (http://www3.pictures.zimbio.com/gi/San+Francisco+Mayor+Ed+Lee+Attends+Topping+Ww3QxgO8pP-l.jpg). In the grand scheme of Ed Lee pictures, that one’s pretty even-handed. The one used here isn’t actually all that far off from the one on the cover his campaign biography.

  • Jeremy_ofSF

    It’s an interesting conversation, but first of all: WTH??? How is Ed Lee so oblivious about the City’s minimum wage law??? The Office of Labor Standards Enforcement (who manages minimum wage stuff) reports to the City Administrator–Ed’s old job! That’s pretty weird and a little unsettling–especially for a guy who is supposed to be so capable and knowledgeable about the inner workings of city government.

    Back to the picture discussion, I think that befuddled picture matches Ed Lee’s befuddled quotes in this article. I’d agree that it’s not appropriate to use for every story about the Mayor.

    I’ve definitely noticed that the Chronicle has a habit of using unflattering photos of progressive politicians. It’d be interesting to hear from newspaper types about the process for selecting pics of politicians and how much editorial input there is into it.

  • Jeremy_ofSF

    It’s an interesting conversation, but first of all: WTH??? How is Ed Lee so oblivious about the City’s minimum wage law??? The Office of Labor Standards Enforcement (who manages minimum wage stuff) reports to the City Administrator–Ed’s old job! That’s pretty weird and a little unsettling–especially for a guy who is supposed to be so capable and knowledgeable about the inner workings of city government.

    Back to the picture discussion, I think that befuddled picture matches Ed Lee’s befuddled quotes in this article. I’d agree that it’s not appropriate to use for every story about the Mayor.

    I’ve definitely noticed that the Chronicle has a habit of using unflattering photos of progressive politicians. It’d be interesting to hear from newspaper types about the process for selecting pics of politicians and how much editorial input there is into it.

  • salsaman

    Hey Greg, thanks for your kind words. It turns out though that I did not vote for Ed Lee for mayor and don’t particularly care for his administration.

    But I do care about SF Appeal and think it’s a great source for news, and they do themselves a disservice by using this unflattering photo for every single piece about the Mayor.

  • salsaman

    Hey Greg, thanks for your kind words. It turns out though that I did not vote for Ed Lee for mayor and don’t particularly care for his administration.

    But I do care about SF Appeal and think it’s a great source for news, and they do themselves a disservice by using this unflattering photo for every single piece about the Mayor.

  • Eve Batey

    Hey, everybody! Thanks for the great debate, and for (mostly) keeping things civil.

    I wanted to note one thing: we do not use that photo with every story we run about Mayor Lee. A quick search of our archives verifies this.

    However, we do only have a few Appeal “owned” shots of Lee (the photo from this piece was taken for us by our own Chris Roberts, for example) so we are inclined to use those again and again, as opposed to using photos we don’t have the rights to and hoping we don’t get caught.

    I’ll certainly take all your concerns under advisement, however, and will see if we can get a staffer to capture some more flattering shots of Lee in future.

    Anybody know if Glamour Shots is still in business locally? Maybe we can get the Mayor a package there. I don’t know about you guys, but I’d love to see him sporting this look.

  • Eve Batey

    Hey, everybody! Thanks for the great debate, and for (mostly) keeping things civil.

    I wanted to note one thing: we do not use that photo with every story we run about Mayor Lee. A quick search of our archives verifies this.

    However, we do only have a few Appeal “owned” shots of Lee (the photo from this piece was taken for us by our own Chris Roberts, for example) so we are inclined to use those again and again, as opposed to using photos we don’t have the rights to and hoping we don’t get caught.

    I’ll certainly take all your concerns under advisement, however, and will see if we can get a staffer to capture some more flattering shots of Lee in future.

    Anybody know if Glamour Shots is still in business locally? Maybe we can get the Mayor a package there. I don’t know about you guys, but I’d love to see him sporting this look.