As the April 15 deadline nears for completion of the redistricting process, which will define the political boundaries of San Francisco for the next ten years, progressives worry that all of the city’s liberal bastions might be concentrated into District 6 (South of Market/Tenderloin), District 9 (the Mission/Bernal) and District 5 (Haight/Western Addition). This could result in a permanent 8-3 fix for downtown and business interests.
A group of community advocates met last December to strategize on how to create an eleven district map and eighty San Franciscans attended a forum in January to begin work on a Community Unity map proposal.
The Unity map currently looks surprisingly close to the Redistricting Task Force’s most recent draft. My two main areas of concern center around how much of the Tenderloin is lost to David Chiu’s District 3 and whether the SRO hotels in the North Mission remain in District 6.
Elsewhere in the city, advocates are concerned about District 11 retaining the historic relationship between the Excelsior and the Oceanview, Merced and Ingleside (OMI) neighborhoods, District 10 keeping the waterfront neighborhoods of Viz Valley, Bayview, Potrero and Dogpatch intact and District 5 retaining Japantown’s community institutions as well as Westside Courts and Booker T. Washington and in particular retaining the massive 55 Laguna (former UC Berkeley extension) development because it will have a major impact on Hayes Valley and the Lower Haight.
A coalition of community and labor organizations urge you to support the Community Unity map in order to keep our neighborhoods together and ensure that the Board of Supervisors remains accountable to community interests. An important hearing will take place on April 4, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. in City Hall Room 406.
Jim Meko, chair
SoMa Leadership Council