SF March ballot measures will tackle revitalizing downtown, public safety, drug crisis

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Monday, January 8, 2024
SF March ballot measures tackle 3 big city issues
San Francisco voters will be asked to help the downtown area recover and take on the drug crisis with three upcoming March ballot measures.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- San Francisco is trying to tackle some of its big issues at the ballot box this March.

Voters will be asked to help the downtown area recover and take on the drug crisis.

We took a look at three measures that will be on the ballot.

"We need to dig in, and we need to go harder and stronger," said San Francisco Mayor London Breed.

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A plea from Breed on Saturday asked city voters to get behind three propositions.

"And not be afraid to make the hard decisions that are going to get us to a better place," she said.

Flanked by local leaders and in front of hundreds of supporters, the mayor outlined Propositions C, E and F.

Prop C is aimed at revitalizing San Francisco's downtown.

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"Downtown is not going to be what it was before the pandemic, but it can be better," Breed said.

It would incentivize investors by waiving the city's transfer tax on office buildings that are converted to housing.

"For the buildings that can be converted office to housing -- and some of them can be -- we need to make sure that our very high transfer tax is not making that economically impossible," said State Senator Scott Wiener.

Prop E looks to lighten the load of paperwork on officers. Right now, it's taking up about a third of their time.

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The measure also makes way for the use of surveillance video, drones and facial recognition.

"It's so important to make sure that we are giving the tools. But that doesn't mean we let up on reforms. That doesn't mean that we don't focus on making sure that there's clear reporting and transparency," Breed said.

Proposition F tackles the fentanyl crisis.

The measure would require people struggling with addiction to be enrolled in treatment in order to continue receiving welfare.

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"We're not requiring them to be clean and sober, but requiring that they be in a treatment program if they want benefits of the city," Breed said.

The mayor first introduced the idea last year, and it faced immediate scrutiny.

"When they say it is a punitive measure by denying people access to GA, but it's more punitive to me when a person is lying down on the streets and dying, and we just walk past them every day," said Cedric Akbar, recovery advocate.

"We're not taking away shelter options. We're not taking away housing options. We're not taking away the door that opens to help people struggling get the help and support they need," Breed said.

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