SF Usual Suspects

Archive for December, 2009

Thanks for the Morale Booster, Geesh!

One Chron reporter walks us through the many disturbing acts and realities that took place in 2009.  Always “the glass is half full” type of gal, I hope this can only mean that 2010 will bring Peace on Earth, Goodwill Toward Men – or, at least, relative to the previous year, right?

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

Toot Toot. Beep Beep. Here Are Safe Ways to Get Home This NYE.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye, Bay Area Revelers:  Both BART and Caltrain are extending their hours of operation, offering bridge and tunnel folk a safe ride home from the myriad of parties you are sure to attend this New Year’s Eve (and early morn).  Additionally, the Chron provides a nifty list of government services and agencies that will be observing the first day of 2010, and those that will not.  (Sorry in advance to those of you who were dead set on getting a new driver’s license photo the day after.)

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

Ready for 2010

The San Francisco Police Department is making sure it is prepared for the New Year’s Eve festivities.

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

Another Top Ten

John King gives us his list of favorite buildings that came into being during the past decade.

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

The spin

Although San Francisco’s homicide rate is higher than this time last year, the SFPD reports that the figure is still much lower than it has been over the past five years.  I like the optimism, but if I were you I’d still lock your door at night and practice some serious Judo chops.

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009


90,000 BART riders + 150 BART police + No arrests = Happy New Year, indeed.

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

Film Commission Drama

The Examiner uncovers new details surrounding a recently resigned San Francisco film commissioner who’s being accused of improper behavior.

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

New digs

The Chronicle’s John King reports on the remarkably quick move by the Crissy Field Center into its new (albeit temporary) space along the waterfront.  Welcome home!

Monday, December 28th, 2009

Crystal Ball

As we near the end of 2009, the Examiner takes a look at the important stories looming on the horizon in 2010.  On their list: sanctuary policy, parking meters, steroids, the Bay Bridge, and elections, elections, elections.  If it all seems overwhelming, never fear – Usual Suspects will keep you in the loop!

Monday, December 28th, 2009


With health benefits and pensions a static staple in transit workers’ contracts, the Examiner reports there is little wiggle room to lean out the $8 billion debt the Bay Area’s transit agencies are accumulating over the next quarter century.

Monday, December 28th, 2009

A piece of San Francisco history

The Chronicle interviews Ellen Schumer, City Hall’s official historian and head docent, about her very interesting position.

Sunday, December 27th, 2009


Today’s public service announcement: for all you holiday revelers, Bay Area transit agencies will stay open late (and Muni will be free!) on New Year’s Eve to help ensure that you get home safely.  A little worse for the wear, perhaps, but safely.

Saturday, December 26th, 2009

Not your usual Christmas Mass

Some people celebrate Christmas with eggnog by the fire, but here in San Francisco a group of die-hard cyclists commemorated the holiday with a ride down Market Street.  Some even disrobed for this month’s Critical Mass, adding a little unexpected holiday cheer for the tourists observing the ride.  Let’s hope there were some well-placed Santa hats to keep everyone warm…

Saturday, December 26th, 2009

What Ever Happened to Good Old Hard Cash?

Mayor Gavin Newsom and Treasurer Jose Cisneros explain San Francisco’s small loan program, PayDay Plus SF, which offers a public credit option at low interest rates.

Thursday, December 24th, 2009

Budget Woes

In an attempt to raise revenue and (finally!) balance the City’s budget, Mayor Gavin Newsom is proposing two new initiatives: a condo conversion fee and selling permits to drive taxis.  Needless to say, both are controversial.  Let the debate begin!

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

Yo Quiero New York City

At last!  San Francisco’s abandoned Chihuahuas are off to the Big Apple.  And lest you think it wasn’t worth the wait, their trip included a red carpet, first class tickets and “chi-mosas.”  Quite frankly, I’ve never been this jealous of a dog.

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

Chump Change

SFPD Chief George Gascón is on the hook for $27K he spent on a consultant who helped him evaluate the Department before taking over as Top Cop.  And in this budget environment where it’s hard to find a buck-two-fifty, methinks this might present the Chief with a few problems.

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

New Faces at City Hall

The Chronicle reports on the four gentlemen who used to work on Mayor Gavin Newsom’s gubernatorial campaign, and who now have jobs in San Francisco City Hall.  Various folks talk about the resumes of the new guys, about the folks who they replaced, and about whether or not having campaign staffers working in government is a Good Idea.

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009

Good news for dance hall keepers, fortune tellers, hearse drivers and rodeo impresarios

On Tuesday, Board President David Chiu introduced legislation to strike a bunch of fees from the books.  They include such high grossing events as funeral processions, ring-toss operations, and Wild West shows.   Now, this is stimulus…..

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009

Can you hear me now?

Remember the ordinance that requires warnings on mobile phones? Lots of attorneys and judges are fighting about it now. For the more legally-minded of you, the Recorder allows you some insight into How The Process Is Going.

Monday, December 21st, 2009


Chief George Gascón shares that certain crimes are being under-reported or misreported in SFPD’s books, making the City’s crime profile rosier than its reality.

Monday, December 21st, 2009

Let me tell you about that guy

Custodian Chris Salcedo, who has been taking care of City Hall for over 30 years, sits down with the Chronicle to tell a few of his favorite stories.

Sunday, December 20th, 2009

And the winner is…

By unanimous vote, James Fang is elected to serve his third term as president of BART’s Board of Directors.  Hints of what’s to come during Fang’s third year as the head of BART? You’ll be able to take a ride on the new connector to the Oakland airport in a brand new train car, and stop at new stations in Livermore and Fremont.  Ah, the best years are ahead of us.

Friday, December 18th, 2009

Dear Dianne

A guest columnist pens an opinion piece asking San Francisco’s former mayor to consider running for Governor in 2010.

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

Shaken, not stirred

Early returns indicate that the City’s seismically unstable affordable housing units will likely remain on shaky ground.  The Earthquake Safety Bond, Prop A, doesn’t look to have the two-thirds majority it needs to get the cash.  Thousands of ballots still need to be counted, so it ain’t over just yet.

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009