Planning Commission appointee describes possible conflicts 

An appointee to the Planning Commission clarified Thursday the conflict of interest she may have when voting on important development issues while also working for an influential Chinatown nonprofit.

“One question that many people have been asking me about is if there are potential conflicts due to my day job at CCDC,” said Cindy Wu, Board of Supervisors President David Chiu’s appointee to the Planning Commission.

Wu, whose appointment confirmation was before the board’s Rules Committee on Thursday, said she would certainly have to recuse herself from any votes on an affordable housing contract with the Chinatown Community Development Center. She would, however, likely be able to vote on a larger development plan even if the CCDC owned a parcel within the area and also on proposals on which the nonprofit takes positions. She said whenever such issues arose she would ask for advice from the city attorney.

Wu, who works as a community planning manager for CCDC, was praised by the committee for her qualifications — a graduate of Berkeley with a degree in architecture and receives her master’s in city planning from Massachusetts Institute of Technology — and her passion for reaching out to the community and involving everyone in the decision-making process.

The Board of Supervisors is expected to approve of her appointment Tuesday. She fills a vacancy left when Mayor Ed Lee appointed chair of the Planning Commission Christina Olague Jan. 9 to the Board of Supervisors’ District 5 seat, which represents the Fillmore, Western Addition and Haight neighborhoods. That Board of Supervisors seat was left vacant when Ross Mirakarimi was sworn in as sheriff.

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