Supes needle mayor during visit 

Two members of the Board of Supervisors threw thinly veiled barbs in the direction of Mayor Gavin Newsom on Monday, in his first visit to the legislative body in two years.

Newsom — who continues to say a voter suggestion that he publicly meet with the Board of Supervisors every month would result in political theater — said the comments, which came from members of the board most critical of him, Board President Aaron Peskin and District 6 Supervisor Chris Daly, were "par for the course."

Peskin, who was unanimously chosen Monday by his board colleagues to serve a second term as board president, vowed to the packed chamber audience — which included friends and family as well as city staff and elected officials — that he would "work each and every day to close the gap between this board and the Mayor’s Office."

In the next breath, Peskin detailed the reasons for mistrust between the Board of Supervisors and the Mayor’s Office.

"Secrecy, confidentiality, stonewalling, don’t feed our elders, don’t house the homeless, repair our streets, improve our parks or build new houses," he said. "Disinformation, propaganda, rumors have run their course. These practices diminish the credibility of city government and ruin faith in our ability to get the job done."

After the meeting, Newsom said his speech attempted to find common ground, while comments from the other political leaders were self-serving.

"You can’t say you care about this city and make comments about bringing it together and then make those statements," Newsom said.

Although Newsom has maintained that he has working relationships with individual members of the Board of Supervisors, several have complained that interactions are strained and that it is difficult to get information from his staff members. In 2006, Daly and three other supervisors put an advisory measure on the November ballot — passed by 56 percent of the voters — asking for Newsom to appear monthly at a Board of Supervisors meeting.

Newsom, who gave a five-minute address at the board meeting — a largely ceremonial affair to swear in newly elected and re-elected members and choose the board president — said he believed he and the board agreed "98 to 99 percent of the time" and could work together.

"The other 1 to 2 percent is exploited by the media," he said.

After the meeting, Peskin said his comments were relevant to the members of the Board of Supervisors as well as the mayor.

Daly, similarly, said after the meeting that his criticisms against "one-day service projects" and "feel-good basketball tournaments," were not directly aimed at Newsom, but said could indirectly apply.

"Family free days at the museums do not pay the rent or stop evictions," Daly said during his turn at the microphone to celebrate his re-election.

Last weekend, The City sponsored a free-museum day called "Mayor Gavin Newsom’s San Francisco Family Appreciation Day." In 2004, the mayor sponsored a basketball tournament in Bayview-Hunters Point. And Newsom has received national acclaim for his Project Homeless Connect program, an ongoing series of one-day events that bring city services together with volunteers and corporate donors to do outreach to homeless people.

"Supervisor Daly doesn’t like Project Homeless Connect? Seventeen thousand people disagree with him," Newsom said.

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