I have received a formal endorsement from SF Ocean Edge.
Volunteer grassroots activists from this organization have worked diligently to maintain the character and integrity of Golden Gate Park. For many of us in the Western Neighborhoods, Golden Gate Park is our big backyard, the lungs of the City, a place that gives us a deep rooted sense of place, peace, and solace in the context of our densely populated urban surround.
Golden Gate Park should truly be the People’s Park. Faced with the ill-advised decisions of City Managers working to forge private-public partnerships, some of which are good for the private players and bad for the public, members of SF Ocean Edge have fought to maintain the character of the Park. With good stewardship, the Park is a natural refuge from the stresses of city life, and a place where all who seek might find some connection with Nature and thus find themselves renewed, restored, and present in our San Francisco–one of the most scenic cities in the world.
In recent years, the San Francisco’s Park system has suffered from neglect as money has been siphoned from maintenance and programs to feed capital projects which have received 1/2 billion dollars in bond money in the last 2 decades. When a toxic artificial turf soccer complex was proposed for the Beach Chalet meadow which would pave over and replace over 7 acres of living grass and illuminate it with high powered lights 365 days a year until 10pm, members of SF Ocean Edge spoke out and hit the streets to inform the public about the proposal. Over 4000 individuals signed petitions opposing the industrial soccer stadium, the fight continued through the Planning Commission, an appeal, another appeal to the Board of Supervisors, to the Coastal Commission with a record number of appellants, and now as a CEQA suit in Superior Court.
The proposed Field Turf project at the Beach Chalet meadow has become an embarrassment for the City. Millions spent on a faulty Environmental Impact Report and legal fees to prop up a bad project that would make a landfill of the Western end of the Park–chopped up tires and plastic–and daylight it well into the night. Millions spent championing hazmats over our aquifer (which will soon be tapped for irrigation and drinking water to meet the needs of residents). Millions spent in partnership with a private foundation–City Fields–which picks the field materials, the contractors, the specialized equipment required for maintenance, and, as the fields wear out, the contractors, the materials…
I have researched this bad partnership well. The members of SF Ocean Edge know it far better. Some have fought the good fight against the destruction and closure of Golden Gate Park by Parks Inc. for 5 years. They have given of themselves, their time, and their resources, to help make our City a better place by keeping it a place where ecological wisdom, grassroots activism, and uncommon common sense can still flourish. I am humbled and honored to receive their endorsement for District 4 Supervisor.
As Supervisor, I will attempt to bring legislation to the table to place a moratorium on all Field Turf installations and to divert much needed money from capital projects to maintenance.