Letters: Get rid of rent control 

“7-step plan for his No. 1 crisis,” The City, Friday

Get rid of rent control

Mayor Ed Lee’s plan to build more homes in San Francisco is definitely needed.

However, the plan will meet stiff opposition from neighborhood NIMBY organizations that will tie up the process for two or more years. The mayor and the supervisors should first bring The City’s planning process into the 21st century to rein in the endless NIMBY appeals and obstructions.

Unfortunately Lee’s devotion to rent control is counter-productive. Rent control is one of the main reasons for the lack of affordable homes.

If subsidizing tenants is a priority, the expense should be shared by everyone in The City, not strictly housing providers.

Howard Epstein

San Francisco

“S.F. transit issues take center stage,” The City, Sunday

No more cash for SFMTA

Mayor Ed Lee is a skilled politician and he apparently hopes voters will forget why San Francisco needs a $500 million transit bond in the first place.

San Francisco voters voted for “transit first” and instead got “bicycles first.” The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency thought it important to request and obtain a $400 million federal grant to make San Francisco safer for bicyclists — who are only about 3.4 percent of commuters.

Also, the SFMTA and several generations of mayors accepted federal funding for the Central Subway, which requires matching funds by The City. Meanwhile, public transit and road maintenance are deferred. Then, voters are asked to vote for a transit bond that appears to be in control of the same interests who contributed to the transit debacle in the first place.

Lee lost on the 8 Washington St. proposal (Propositions B and C). Maybe the mayor needs to lose on the transit bonds issue until transparency and accountability are introduced into city government and transit policy and practice.

Fiona McGregor

San Francisco

Walkers must watch out

I have been in San Francisco for about six years. I am homeless. More than once, police have told me that crossing on a red light is permissible if there is no traffic coming. Many, many times I have seen police officers on foot crossing on a red light. How are the regular citizens and tourists supposed to respect the law when law enforcement does not? Crossing on the red and in the middle of the street is an everyday thing in The City. No wonder there are so many accidents concerning pedestrians.

I grew up in Eureka, and if you cross on the red or the middle of the street you get a ticket. If you don’t pay the ticket you go to jail. Obviously that won’t work in San Francisco. So what is The City going to do? Have undercover crossing police? This is a major city; these kind of things happen. The police have real crimes to attend to.

We need to police ourselves and pay more attention!

Glawrence Gates

San Francisco

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