Voters approve SF parks measure, dump Hetch Hetchy drain plan

Lake Merced

Lake Merced is among the San Francisco park areas that will benefit from Proposition B.

San Franciscans strongly endorsed City College of San Francisco, city parks and funding for housing in Tuesday’s election, but rejected a proposal to study the removal of the Hetch Hetchy reservoir.

For CCSF, faced with massive budget cuts and the potential loss of accreditation this yea, the stakes were high for Proposition A, a parcel tax expected to generate around $16 million annually.

The measure’s passage with a solid 72 percent could be seen as a strong vote of confidence in the community college district, one of the largest in the state.

Voters were likewise supportive of Proposition B, a $195 million bond measure to finance park repairs and renovations at locations including the West Sunset Playground and Lake Merced.

The measure passed with nearly 72 percent of the vote, despite resentment about deals allowing private groups to lease public spaces and arguments that Rec and Park has mismanaged funds and sought too many bonds in recent years.

Proposition F, however, which would have required the city to spend $8 million on developing a plan to remove the Hetch Hetchy reservoir, a major source of drinking water for San Francisco and the Bay Area, was rejected by more than 77 percent of voters. Environmentalists argued the reservoir, once a valley thought to rival Yosemite for beauty, could be restored without harming water supplies, but opponents including Mayor Ed Lee called the plan costly and “insane.”

Proposition C, creating an affordable housing trust intended to replace funds the city lost with the abolition of redevelopment agencies, passed with 64 percent of the vote.

Other measures approved on Tuesday that passed with little controversy included a money-saving plan to move odd-year elections to even years, a change in the way the city taxes businesses and a largely symbolic city policy asserting that, contrary to recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings, corporations are not people.

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2 Comments

  1. I’ll admit I was disappointed in the Hetch Hetchy vote, what really blew my mind was voters being duped into giving one more cent to SF Parks & Rec. These are the same guys trying to pave over and pile toxic tires and astroturf along with high rise stadium lighting at the west end of GG Park. They are decidedly NOT about parks, nature or kids. These are development minded empire builders…. and giving them more money is like funding a rogue regime. Good luck trying to protect SF’s environment with these folks spending your money….

  2. San Francisco’s dirty little secret is not so secret anymore. All Californians need to vote on this. California voters say “let us vote!” Bring on the statewide initiative! All of those San Francisco Prius drivers who just voted to keep a dam in a national park are just a big hypocritical joke along with their mayor and former mayor, Senator Feinstein.

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