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tv   Mayors Press Availability  SFGTV  October 30, 2020 6:15am-7:01am PDT

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. >> welcome to the land use and transportation committee for san francisco on monday, october 26, 2020. i am the chair of the committee joined by the clerk. please proceed. >> clerk: thank you, mr. chair. due to the covid-19 health emergency and in order to protect the board of supervisors and the public, the chamber and committee rooms are closed. the members will be taking care in the meeting remotely. committee members will attend
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meetings through video conference and participating in the meeting to the same extent as if they are present. public comment will be available on each item of the agenda. the number to call in is being streamed across the screen. opportunities to speak are available via phone by calling the number streaming on your screen, that's 415-655-0001, again that's 415-655-0001. the meeting i.d. is 146 347 8588. again, that's 146 347 8588. then press pound and pound again again. when connected, you will hear the meeting discussion, but you will be in muted and listening mode only. when your item of interest comes
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up, please press star and three to the added to the speaker line. it's best to speak from a quiet location, speak clearly and slowly and turn down your television or radio. you may submit public comment via e-mail to me at items submitted today will appear on the agenda of november 3, unless otherwise stated. >> chair: i would like to acknowledge that the other members of the board are present. >> clerk: item one is an ordinance amending the building code to require new construction to utilize only electric power; amending
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environment code to provide public hearings on implementation of all-electric requirement; adopting findings of local conditions under . members of the public wishing to comment should call the number streaming on the screen, that's 415-655-0001, and the meeting i.d. is 146 347 8588. press found and pound again. if you have not done so already, please press star three to speak. >> chair: thank you, madam clerk. i want to acknowledge the work that supervisor mandelman has done. this is the thirst time this had appeared at the transportation committee. supervisor mandelman has been at the forefront of a contentious issue working with the house labor and working with the restaurant community and the
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chinese chamber of commerce. i think we are very close. there may be some non-substantive tweaks that could happen in committee today or at the full board of supervisors next week. with that, i'll turn it over to supervisor mandelman. >> thank you, chair peskin. thank you to all members of the meet for engaging with this legislation over a few of these meetings. as you will recall, a week ago the committee accepted several amendments to the legislation, but continued it to give the broader community additional time to review and understand some of the amendments. one of these was an amendment to include a waiver process for restaurants that require gas facilities for their unique cuisine or cooking style. again, these waivers would be
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appealable to the board of examiners as specified in the ordinance and also to the board of appeals as well. i've had a chance to discuss this with the chinese chamber of commerce and the san francisco chamber of commerce as well. i want to be clear both groups would prefer a broader exemption for future restaurant spaces, but i believe this limited restaurant waiver strikes the proper balance allowing for continued use of gas in new buildings in the future, in the cases where appropriate and necessary, while at the same time taking the transition away from natural gas in san francisco. as you know and as chair peskin referenced, we've also been in conversations with local 38 pipe fitters about just transition. we are in the midst of what i hope will prove to be productive conversations about non-potable water reuse and i look forward to working with city staff,
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local 38, and other staff members over the coming months to bring forward legislation that will advance our commitment to water reuse. folks, mr. mazola and i hoped the conversations would have progressed a bit further prior to voting this legislation out. we will continue these conversations next week and i will assure mr. mazola if we're not comfortable to where it is at prior to being voted on at the full board, i will myself request a continuance of that legislation for at least one week at the full board. i'm saying that now here publicly to make the commitment known to all. before concluding, colleagues, i just want to extend my thanks to the committee and all the staff
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who have worked on a proposal to get us to this point. everyone who participated in the zero emissions building task force and my colleagues on the team and i want to extend a huge thank you to the climate emergency coalition and earth justice and the two dozens environmental organizations who championed this effort from the beginning and remind us every step of the way of the dire emergency of the climate crisis that continues to unfold around us. with that, colleagues, i am hopeful and would request that you would be able to forward this legislation to the full board with positive recommendations today.
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>> chair: thank you, supervisor mandelman. can you character the sera club organizati organization. can you speak to that? >> i believe the sierra club are in support of just transition and would want to see this board of supervisors and city and count of san francisco make sure that the transition to a greener economy does not leave workers behind. i don't think they want to see this legislation delayed. >> chair: relative to the just transition, that what you're speaking about relative to local 38 and the building trades? >> yes, that is what i'm talking. the concern for the trade fitters is the potential
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additional work involved in electrification is not going to make up for the work that is lost in transitioning away from natural gas. there are good union jobs that can be had through increased water reuse and recycling. san francisco has been a leader, at least in the united states around that. i think it was the hope of the plumbers and pipe fitters that we will break some new ground and move further. i'm happy to try and help make that happen. >> chair: break new ground as long as we don't break any pipes. relative to the work that you've been doing by -- by way of full disclosure i've been participating in as it relates to the restaurant world.
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and the solution that you came up with at our last meeting that was a waiver process and the questions around how that waiver process would be applied and what the due process provisions would be applied. can you speak to that, mr. sponsor. >> yeah, so the waiver process is more fully developed in an administrative bulletin that will need to go through the p.b.i. process. all parties concerned will have an opportunity to make their voices married through that process. there will be an administrative bulletin. ultimately a decision to grant or not the waiver is with the director of the department and his designee.
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any permit -- any building permit including the decision of whether or not to grant a natural gas exemption for a restaurant can also be appealed to the board of appeals. >> supervisor mandelman, as i spoke to you earlier, the notion of the board of examiners as somebody who's been on the board of supervisors for 13 of the last 20 years was unknown to me. can you tell me what this body is and how they're appointed? >> i will find that out. it is the body that under the building code is the appeal body. >> chair: yes, i brought this up in my staff meeting this morning and i haves the board of appeals i know, the administrative arm i
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understand, but this body is unknown to me and how they're appointed and whether or not we would consider that to be a fair and impartial adjudicatory body, i would like to hear about that. >> the short answer is they're appointed by the b.i.c. and there are 13 members. i will find out if they have particular qualifications around their building knowledge. >> chair: how often do they meet and what other appeals come to them? i have to say i've never heard of this entity until you made those amendments. >> me either. >> chair: i don't know who that was. >> i just wanted to underscore,
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mr. chair, that i never heard of that either. >> chair: put your name on the moster and then i'll call on you. the floor is yours when you're done eating. >> i'm not eating. thank you. i'll wait to make my comment and then i'll go ahead after public comment. >> chair: supervisor preston, any comments now? >> not now. >> chair: madam clerk, why don't we open this up for public comment. >> clerk: thank you, mr. chair. we're checking if we have any callers in the queue. if you have not done so, please press star three to enter the queue to speak. you only need to do this once. the system will indicate that you have been unmuted and you may begin your comments.
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>> chair: first speaker, please. >> my name is dave fehee and i am with local 38 plumbers and pipe fitters union. i'm also a member of the mayor's zero emission task force and some of the commercial work groups. i've been involved from the first meeting up until today. let's start by recognizing the supervisors of the land use and transportation committee for their committed support and consideration. i would also like to applaud the ordinance sponsor supervisor mandelman and his staff and all the associated san francisco agencies that have continued to work their efforts for an equitable transition, including present-day participation just
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mentioned with the work sessions. it is attributed to the workforce, the citizens, and the future. i would like to recognize the environmental groups that continue to work with us, it is greatly appreciated and all the callers who have supported the water reuse and conservation, through calgreen and other sustainable goals. we've been using the metaphor along the way as the electrification ordinance due to its complexity as a plane which we're trying to land. i would like to think of it the other way around that it's a plane on the runway and we're trying to land it safely for everyone on board for a smooth
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takeoff and where the plane or san francisco travels with this ordinance will not just be climate change action, but all further resource protection. we remain optimistic and fully engaged with all involved for a smooth transition to a blue-green implemented program minimizing building impacts on the project -- >> thank you so much for your comments. next speaker, please. you will note that your line is unmuted. >> yes, i live in san francisco in district 11. good afternoon, committee members. i have spent some of my time during the period of isolation forced on us by covid reading up on climate change. i don't have to tell you that
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what is coming is genuinely frightening. this is why you're considering this ordinance. it's an early step in reducing san francisco's projection of greenhouse glasses and limited climate change. this is the low-lying fruit, the easy first step. i'm a homeowner and my home uses gas for the air and water heaters and the stove. i'm interested what you do next to establish a path for people like me to get rid of gas. i just just lowered my thermometer and going to attempt to get through with hats and sweaters and space heaters. i realize how trivial the steps are, but i think there are a lot of san franciscans like me who are very concerned about climate change and want to do all they can to limit it. it's certainly why i'm here
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today. i appreciate the work this committee and the staff has spent working on this. i ask you to act quickly and send the full ordinance to the board of supervises. >> clerk: thank you, speaker. next speaker, you'll have two minutes. you'll be told your line is unmuted. >> good afternoon. comments on behalf of the california [indiscernible] -- supervisor mandelman for continuing to have productive discussions with us. as we discussed last week [indiscernible] and appliances in new buildings. the electrification ordinance should be tied to additional requirements to expand the requirements for installing rainwater and recycled water
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systems in new construction. this would provide workers impacted with new replacement work and also further benefit san francisco and provide a substantial energy and water savings. we're hoping to have language work quickly to improve the ordinance that will put the city in a path to transition the workers. we would ask the committee to delay this by a year so we have time to do this. given the timing that we have, we want to make sure the committee amends the ordinance to recognize the job impact and to include a decline for staff to come back with a proposed ordinance expanding the rainwater requirements. i'd like to thank
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[indiscernible] environmental defense fund for continuing to work with us and for supporting us on this issue. i know they're ready and willing to help us go down. [indiscernible] provision that san francisco can take to protect its water, protect its environment, and provide a just transition to the workers that are otherwise going to be losing their cabs due to the electrification ordinance. thank you. >> clerk: next speaker. >> thank you, supervisor mandelman, again for all your hard work on this through all these months. time is running out for the warming planet, for people, and
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all other forms of life on earth. for this ordinance to be passed on to the full board, electrifying new buildings is an important first step. please, no further delay. as a grandparent and an organic gardener, i care object a sustainable future. please vote this ordinance out of committee and let the full board vote on it. >> hello, supervisors. this is jennifer haggie, a member of 350 s.f. from district seven. i urge you to support this legislation with a minimum of exceptions and would like to reiterate three points. there are culinary schools now that teach cool on electric
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stoves and many cuisines that prepare food on interest stoves. natural gas emissions leak during transit and in our homes and kitchens. it would be far more expensive to retrofit buildings after they've been constructed rather than during construction. i urge you to carry this legislation forward with a minimum of exceptions. thank you for your time. >> clerk: thank you for your comment. we have 26 listeners and 14 in the queue. next speaker, please. >> good afternoon, supervisors. my name is paul vermer and i have, as many have spoken at prior sub-committee hearings on this matter.
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i want to return to the theme of public notice and a public hearing when an exception is granted. they make a big deal to how i can appeal it to the board of examiners, who traditionally have focused on specific, technical issues related to building code only. unfortunately, we have no way of knowing when a permit has been issued. there is no provision to allow notice. so we cannot appeal in a timely manner in this set up that has been put forward. supervisor peskin, you have been well involved with things like the neighborhood commercial district. you may recall a similar provision in the code for the neighborhood commercial district and called for a review every two years. when i started paying attention
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to these issues in the commercial districts in san francisco, that was 10 years after the legislation had been passed. it took until 2007, i believe, nearly 20 years before any hearing was held. mandated a hearing in the code and an update in the code does not necessarily make it happen, especially not if, for example, department heads really don't want to push it forward. so i'm concerned that you are casting your hope for public understanding in a very -- in a system that has not demonstrated to be robust. that said, i think it is essential to get this legislation before the board and passed unanimously -- >> your time has expired.
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>> clerk: next speaker. >> i am a resident of district five. i want to really support this. as a renter, i live in a house that is more than 50 or 75 years old -- well, the house is 100 years old, but the electrical system is 50 years old. that is a challenge. for example, we want to install an electric dryer. anything that can be installed now will be in use for the next 50 years. i would very much love the plumbers to be able to install a gray water system for me and my neighbors who are in 50 or 75-year-old buildings that
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haven't been updated. so i think there's definitely room for everybody to benefit from this. the only thing -- the people who will get hurt the most are people today and people in 50 years will have to deal with bad air quality, worse climate change, the many, many problems that we're seeing. if we continue to have fires like this and people have to be sealed into their homes due to the smoke which is going to be true for at least -- every year is going to be worse for climate change now. that means everybody who gets natural gas will have a worse air quality in their kitchen from now until we do eventually get rid of the natural gas. a change now means faster change to gray water.
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that's the cycle of construction in san francisco. thank you. >> clerk: thank you for your comment. we have 21 listeners and 10 in the queue. next speaker, please. >> my name is stephanie. i'm a constituent in district eight. this is my third time calling in to the board of supervisors, but i've been following this issue through mothers out front and the climate emergency coalition. much like heidi was saying, this hit home when we were sealed in our apartment, couldn't open windows, and i had to cook on the gas stove, i notice the fumes. every time i walk by our gas stove i notice fumes whether or not it is on.
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i learned from a pregnancy and toddler health seminar that we need to have windows open when cooking with gas, but now we can't have them open. what are we being subjected to and designing for new homes? i'm really excited and proud to be from rafael's district and i want to be proud of san francisco set be exampling for california and other parts of the united states, having a transition that ensures health and creates jobs like the union. people have said there's great opportunity here. i ask that you pass this as soon as possible with as few exceptions as possible, close those loopholes and the other gentleman's comment about
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notifying us when you are considering making an exception is really important as well, so thank you. >> clerk: thank you. next speaker, please. you'll be notified that your line has been unmuted and you may begin your comments. >> hello, i'm debra lee stark, a resident of district nine. as a 73-year-old professional photographer, i'm dismayed that we don't do more to mitigate climate change. we need to be making superhuman efforts. prohibiting the expansion of natural gas in our buildings is important to me because it's a definite step we can take now and it's relatively easy. induction cooking has advantages over gas, it's better, there's no loss of energy to the air. this is a crucial moment for climate action in california and san francisco can be a leader. please pass the all interest new
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construction ordinance with no further carve outs so we can start working on the next steps in climate emergency solutions. thank you. >> clerk: next speaker. >> i'm a constituent in district two speaking as the typical san franciscan. i'm so glad to see this moving ahead preventing the expansion of natural in our buildings. compared to the rest of the world, i am pretty privileged. let's not forget that it is the top 5% of the world emitting the emissions worldwide. that top 5% is us. i want to move ahead of the curve so we can do this with justice to the people in town who are less privileged than me
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because we have a huge income disparity. to do it with proper income consideration, we need to move now. we can lead the bay area, california, and the nations and really literally lead the world. it is a crucial moment for climate action everywhere in california to see a change in what we're doing. so i urge you to move forward with no further carve outs. >> clerk: next speaker. >> i'm a resident of district eight. obviously, as you know, we obviously support this ordinance. we're excited that many of the
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concerns have been addressed. thank you to supervisor mandelman and also the committee for the time you've put into this ordinance in the last month or so and all the demands on your time. i'm going to take the rest of my time to lay out the work. this is only the beginning. we're succeeding in no longer making the problem worse. we still have to require active construction for new restaurants and a swap with the buyer exception, build our local workforce and knowledge for building these buildings and then we have to retrofit all existing buildings. this is no small task.
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the tasks ahead are more daunting and require more will. we cannot afford to address climate change with only the easy stuff. this is easy. the technology is there. we're in a climate emergency and it's time to act like it. please pass this ordinance so it can take effect in january 2021 as promised last year. >> clerk: thank you for your comments. next speaker, please. >> i would like to point out one major concern in a proposed
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solution. this is about the feasibility for the restaurants who need natural gas to cook. a developer may not know what restaurant they would want to have in their new space, unless there is a higher-end restaurant sought after. you need to make sure that the smaller mom-and-pop restaurants have the ability to open in the new developments. we require that new developments can bring in gas lines so that any restaurants requiring a cooking method can change it. it would be in our minds a lot more small business friendly to have the waiver process for the turn on of gas rather than its installation, assuming that not all restaurants will need this
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option, but to have the option in place could make-or-break some businesses. we want to make sure that the city of san francisco has the ability to open restaurants in all neighborhoods in san francisco. thank you all for your time again and have a great day. >> [indiscernible] i'm with the family emergency coalition and i live in district five. i've been working [indiscernible] hearing the concerns, [indiscernible] --
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pass this legislation as fast as possible [indiscernible] further prohibiting natural gas [indiscernible] -- as a previous caller has said the infrastructure can be used for up to 50 years. to what we do now will have long-term impacts [indiscernible]. this is a crucial moment for climate action in california. please pass an all-electric use construction ordinance [indiscernible].
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thank you. >> clerk: thank you. next speaker, please. you have two minutes. >> hello, supervisors. good afternoon and thank you for the opportunity to comment. i work at an independent non-profit looking to shift to a low-carbon future. [indiscernible] -- i'm asking for you to approve the passage of the ordinance. moreover, r.m.i. is recommending to the full board an all-electric new construction ordinance without amendments to close the financial feasibility loopholes. feasibility should be determined without regard to financial area or amenity related losses. safeguard the community from the toxic side effects of natural
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gas by scoping the chinatown cultural exemption as narrowly as possible. natural gas is a killer both indoors and out. leaks in our pipes cause health issues. even with properly functioning ventilation, there is a risk of health issues. [indiscernible] every single new building allowed to add gas infrastructure unnecessarily adds harms for new generations. electric new buildings are the first step in addressing the climate emergency. this ordinance has been over a
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year in the making. it must be passed now. please pass this ordinance. thank you. >> clerk: thank you for your comments. we have 17 listeners and five in the queue. >> i'm [indiscernible] emergency climate coalition. [indiscernible] -- leading to at least 30 more annual hospital visits by children. we have more acute and
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concentrated [indiscernible] further burden low-income communities. there is no excuse of a further delay [indiscernible] the climate change impacting generations through decades to come. i want you to look into every parents' eyes and tell them you did everything you could possible. this policy is just the first step towards protecting all of our health and it's taken far too long given what's at stake. [indiscernible] annually in health benefits to the greater san francisco area. commercial electrification will
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be roughly double that, contributing $2.5 billion. [indiscernible] i want to see san francisco and those in power leading. please pass this ordinance with no further carve outs so we can get to the hard work in the next steps [indiscernible] health solutions. >> clerk: thank you for your comments. next speaker, please. >> thank you all for your work on this ordinance. it has taken a lot of people, people in the community, myself included, who have worked on this for about a year and a half. i am in district nine. i will note only that when things are changing, we all experience a certain amount of fear and reluctance. the truth is we have to make this change.
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we cannot continue to allow the burning of natural gas in our buildings. we could consider all the impacts, the fears, the worries, the financial stakes that people in this community have. and it would be in the committees for years. we have to make this change. certainly we need to consider people's jobs and the just transition and the impact this will have on vulnerable communities. but at a certain point, we have to go ahead with this and this is the point. i urge you to vote for this measure today to not add any more exclusions, and to send this off so we can end the process of using natural gas in our buildings. >> clerk: next speaker, please. you'll have two minutes. >> hi, this gabriel dawson. i'm a resident and a renter in district two.
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i want to speak in favor of this resolution. i want to echo many of the profound comments already made that this is a critical thing to do for the health people now and the future of our city. i think we should move forward without any exemptions. the financial concerns or the concerns about small businesses don't change the science. if we start doing carve outs for the restaurants and other things, it's complete -- it's not any different than climate denial at this point because the time to act is now and we need to act as strongly as possible so we can move forward as fast as possible. any time there is a carve out, this dilutes the effectiveness
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of this action and hurts the health of our residents. this contributes to the catastrophic destruction of our planet that urges many members to move forward as quickly as possible on the legislation without any more exemptions or amendments. this should be thought of as the first step in many intense and drastic actions we need to take as a city to combat climate change and also to deal with things in climate change that we're facing this year and will face more into the future. thank you. >> clerk: thank you for your comments. next speaker, please. >> hi [indiscernible] i'm calling so that y'all know we
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support the immediate adoption of this ordinance and also acknowledge the concerns raised by local 28. we're appreciative of the work that supervisor mandelman has tak taken. we commit to supporting supervisor mandelman and local 38 to find a path forward. this is a critical moment for san francisco and california [indiscernible] san francisco can and will make a huge impact on the state. we really hope to work with multiple cities in san francisco and for the governor to encourage a state-wide ordinance. there is still a lot of work to be done to pass