On April 27, EAG's office received a Non-Profit Facilities Renovation from Rebuilding Together SF! The renovation has been truly transformative for our organization. RBTSF is already gearing up for their October Build Day and looking for other organizations in need of renovation and repairs. Please contact (415) 905-1611 for more information or to request an application.
The Jewish Home continues to be active on every front, both independently and collaboratively fighting and raising awareness of the impact of AB 97’s drastic cuts to Medi-Cal rates of reimbursement would have on distinct-part nursing facilities such as the Home. This significant issue is gaining momentum. Assembly Bill (AB) 900, authored by Assemblymember Luis Alejo (D-Salinas), and Senate Bill (SB) 640, authored by Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Long Beach), would reverse the Medi-Cal cuts that were enacted in 2011. AB 900 passed unanimously out of the Assembly Health Committee and now awaits consideration in the Assembly Appropriations Committee. SB 640 passed unanimously out of the Senate Health Committee and is pending in the Senate Appropriations Committee. Both AB 900 and SB 640 require a two-thirds vote in both the State Assembly and Senate before going to Governor Brown for action.
With thanks to all the Jewish Home’s supporters, which includes EAG’s most appreciated involvement and contribution, we amassed about 2,500 signed action letters by our campaign’s deadline of April 30. These letters are due to be delivered shortly to seven lawmakers in Sacramento.
Planning Commission Adoption Hearing for Bike Parking Requirements and Bike Policies: May 16th, 2013
The Planning Department invites you to participate in a hearing this Thursday, May 16th regarding the City’s policies for bicycles. At the hearing, the Commission will consider the first comprehensive update to bicycle parking requirements in San Francisco’s history. Currently, the Planning Code sets requirements for bicycle parking associated with development.
In August 2012, the Commission approved the initiation of the Bicycle Parking Requirements Legislation. This legislation would repeal the existing bicycle parking requirements in the Planning Code and provide new bicycle parking requirements commensurate with the surge in use of bicycles in San Francisco and updated national and international standards for bicycle parking. The Planning Department consulted with many stakeholders to understand their concerns with the proposed changes. An informational hearing was held in December 2012 to obtain further comments from the public, followed by further changes to the Ordinance to address those comments.
On April 4, 2013, the Commission initiated amendments to re-adopt the previously approved General Plan Amendments related to the San Francisco Bike Plan. This re-adoption was a result to a California Court of Appeal decision made on January 14, 2013, which deemed the CEQA findings of the Bike Plan inadequate. These General Plan Amendments established the City’s policies regarding bicycles as an important component of the City’s transportation system.
On Thursday, May 16th, 2013, the Commission will consider:
If approved by the Commission, both proposals would be forwarded to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors for final approvals.
The Planning Department invites you to attend this hearing to express your thoughts about bicycle parking. The case report for this hearing, including the complete proposed ordinances can be downloaded from the Planning Commission’s webpage on: http://www.sf-planning.org/index.aspx?page=3470#documents.
Please find information on location and time of the hearing here: http://www.sf-planning.org/index.aspx?page=3469.
Starting Fridays on June 7, the Excelsior Branch Library (http://sfpl.org/index.php?pg=1013661401) will host a free, 6-week series of Healthier Living Workshops.
Developed by Stanford University School of Medicine and sponsored by SF Department of Aging and Adult Services, the workshops are designed to help people with chronic conditions like arthritis, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, depression, chronic pain, cancer, back problems, breathing problems and others. Classes can help people with chronic conditions and their caregivers improve the quality of their life. At the workshops, participants will learn how to:
· Manage pain, stress, and fatigue
· Be more fit and eat healthier
· Work more effectively with healthcare professionals
· Set goals and problem solve to make positive changes
· Feel better and reduce healthcare costs
The workshops begin on Friday, June 7th and take place every Friday for the next 6 weeks (except no class on July 5th), until July 19th. Each Friday workshop runs from 2 pm to 4:30 pm at the Excelsior Branch Library, 4400 Mission St. at Cotter. FREE gifts and awards will be given to participants completing the workshop! Everyone is welcome though space is limited. To register, please visit http://www.cahealthierliving.org/?location=san-francisco, or contact Excelsior Branch Library at 415.355.2868.
On Monday, May 6, EAG held is quarterly community wide meeting at our office on 35 San Juan Avenue. We were joined by over 40 community members who came to hear updates about our projects and offer their feedback on our work, particularly surrounding the Persia Triangle Project. If you missed the meeting, here's a snapshot of the updates that were presented that evening. Click here to view photos from the meeting.
EAG Beautification: Ever Upward
The Ever Upward Project is progressing rapidly. The project was designed in a community design workshop at the May Quarterly meeting in 2012. One year later, the Excelsior's first piece of civic art is getting ready for construction. The designs are complete and all necessary approvals and permits have been received. We are working with the support of dozens of community volunteers to create the mosaics for the column piece by piece. We need all the help we can get on that! If you're interested in participating, please email email@example.com. The sculpture is slated for installation at the northwest corner of Geneva and Mission this Fall 2013.
EAG Beautification: Library Art & Greening
EAG is working with the Excelsior Branch Library, Architecture for Humanity, and 5 local artists to install seating and greening, as well as art panels at our local library, 4400 Mission Street. The project has been in development since February 2012. It is currently in the permitting and approvals process. We aim to begin construction in Summer of 2013 and have it open for community use by Fall of 2013. During the summer, the project will be constructed during Community Build Days with the help of local volunteers. We need your help to bring this project to fruition! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you're interested in helping out or contributing to the Build Day efforts.
EAG Beautification: Community Kiosk Revitalization
In January 2012, the Excelsior Action Group was approached by Supervisor Avalos to retrofit and activate a blighted news kiosk at the corner of Geneva & Mission. EAG has taken on this project and is investigating the feasibility of relocating the kiosk to a more beneficial and centrally-located site at the Persia Triangle. After the kiosk is retrofitted, EAG hopes to activate it on a more regular basis with local vendors, a community map, information postings from community-based organizations, and artwork.
EAG Safety: Shine a Bright Light on Excelsior
On Saturday, February 16, 2013, the Excelsior Action Group (EAG) executed a grassroots safety program with the help of over a dozen local youth in San Francisco’s Excelsior neighborhood. Shine a Bright Light on Excelsior is a pedestrian level lighting campaign that enlists youth as safety liaisons to distribute free energy efficient lighting to small businesses to brighten their storefront windows at night. Generously funded by PG&E, the program addresses the neighborhood’s dire need for pedestrian level lighting to increase safety and foot traffic on Mission Street after dark. EAG continues to advocate for a permanent solution to this issue.
EAG Business Support: ADA Compliance Assistance
Since December 2012, several businesses on the Excelsior Commercial Corridor have been sued by plaintiffs with disabilities because they are not up to ADA standards and do not provide equal access to patrons with disabilities. EAG has spearheaded a robust outreach and education campaign to both improve the accessibility of businesses in the Excelsior neighborhood and also help protect these businesses from ADA litigation. Outreach for this campaign has been conducted door-to-door in English, Spanish, and Cantonese. In addition, EAG hosted an ADA workshop for Cantonese-speaking business owners in March, which was very well-attended and informative. Finally, EAG is managing an ADA Compliance Inspection program, funded by the Office of Economic and Workforce Development, which provide free inspections of local businesses.
EAG Festival: Save the Date for the 11th Annual
The 11th Annual Excelsior Art & Music Festival will be held this September 29, 2013 in conjunction with Sunday Streets. The Excelsior Action Group's Festival Committee is currently planning the event and can always use extra support and ideas. This year's theme is "Forever Upward" and all proceeds raised from the event will go toward a maintenance endowment for the Ever Upward sculpture. If you want to get involved with festival planning, join us at the Festival Committee's next meeting, Thursday June 6, 6:00 PM at EAG's office, 35 San Juan Avenue. We are also happy to announce that Sunday Streets will be returning to the Excelsior in tandem with the Festival and will be shutting down Mission Street again this year for their event. The quarterly meeting in August will have many more updates and information about how to get involved with the Festival.
Persia Triangle Project
EAG was joined by representatives from the SF Planning Department, MTA, DPW, and Out of Site to present updates on all of the short-term improvements occurring at the Persia Triangle. EAG's project at this site include the Persia Triangle Community Market pilot project (funded), the potential installation of the Community Kiosk at Ocean and Mission (pending), and a collaboration with Out of Site to install street furniture and sidewalk artwork (pending). Planning Department is spearheading the creation of plazas to allow additional space for pedestrian safety and community gathering. MTA is managing proposed changes to bus routes through the site and the additional of bus bulbs. DPW will be repaving the street surfaces in the early part of next year.
Earlier this year, EAG facilitated a grassroots pedestrian level lighting campaign on the commercial corridor called Shine a Bright Light on Excelsior. Thanks to our amazing videographer & film editor Phillip C. Wong and J. Alex, we now have a video to share with the community that introduces you to the program, its goals, and some of our youth partners who helped make the work possible.
What is the Zero Waste Rate Structure?
Customer refuse rates have been traditionally based solely on the black bin and what goes to landfill. As San Francisco moves closer to its goal of Zero Waste by 2020 and the need for the black bin shrinks, the rate system must reflect the total cost of service, not just the black bin. The proposed Zero Waste Rate Structure, submitted last December, supports the City’s Zero Waste goal in the following ways:
For more information, visit the following links:
Zero Waste Resources
Recent court and legislative decisions threaten to eliminate the fragile safety net for California’s most vulnerable older adults – frail elders who depend on Medi-Cal to cover the costs of medically necessary, 24/7 skilled nursing care.
In December 2012, courts gave California the go-ahead to implement Assembly Bill (AB) 97, a new law that will slash Medi-Cal reimbursements to hospital-based, distinct part skilled nursing facilities such as the Jewish Home. Under AB 97, the Jewish Home, which relies on Medi-Cal to care for 96 percent of its frail residents, will see its reimbursement rates reduced by approximately 30 percent, resulting in an approximate $12 million incremental cash deficit to the Home. But AB 97 will not just reduce future income; the cuts are retroactive to June 1, 2011, requiring the Home to repay approximately $19 million to Medi-Cal as of June 2013.
The Jewish Home of San Francisco is a historic, nonprofit facility – rated five stars for excellence by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services – that counts on and receives generous community philanthropy to carry out its 142-year mission. However, the Home and its supporting community do not have the wherewithal to bridge the enormous funding gap AB 97 will create. Anticipating the profound financial impacts of AB 97, the Home has already implemented significant staffing and program changes.
Even before AB 97, though, the Jewish Home recognized the need for change and launched significant efforts to diversify its revenue stream and advance a plan for the future that reflects healthcare reform. The Jewish Home has broadened its short-stay rehabilitation program (STARS), expanded admission to its acute geriatric psychiatry program (one of the only programs of its kind in the Bay Area), and has a strategy to address the changing needs of older adults by delivering a continuum of age-in-place services and programs, including community-based services and new independent and assisted living apartments. This plan would be good for residents, good for the community, and good for California as it could save the state millions of dollars. But because of the impacts of AB 97, these plans have now been put on hold.
The Jewish Home is not the only institution affected by AB 97. Impacts will be felt across the entire distinct part nursing home industry, including Laguna Honda Hospital in San Francisco.
Since AB 97 was introduced, the Jewish Home has spoken out about its devastating impacts, both independently and by playing a lead role in a variety of coalitions – industry-focused, faith-based, in the city and county of San Francisco, with urban and rural partners. The Home has been an active voice in the California Hospital Association’s efforts to fight AB 97 and continues to support CHA in navigating the appropriate legal channels, including en banc proceedings and a possible U.S. Supreme Court case.
The Jewish Home is also advancing its own advocacy efforts, including a letter-writing campaign addressed to key California decision makers that engages the broader community in speaking out for the Home. To download an electronic version of the Home’s action letter, or to learn more about AB 97 and the Jewish Home’s intensive efforts to secure relief, visit its website dedicated to this important issue. Click here to visit the website.
Ninety-six percent of the Jewish Home’s residents – a population that includes octogenarians, centenarians, Holocaust survivors, refugees from the former Soviet Union, and other Californians who contributed to our state’s prosperity in the 20th century – depend on Medi-Cal to cover the costs of their skilled nursing care.
City Attorney's Code Enforcement Team developed innovative app to empower neighborhood groups, individuals and merchants
SAN FRANCISCO (April 1, 2013) -- City Attorney Dennis Herrera today launched a new smartphone app that offers San Francisco residents an easy way to report and track non-emergency code enforcement and nuisance issues. Herrera's Code Enforcement Team has long maintained a code enforcement telephone hotline to enable neighborhood residents to report violations of housing, building, police and other local and state health and safety codes, but with the popularity of smartphones, the new mobile app leverages the latest in communication technology to improve government responsiveness and transparency.
Over a year ago, Herrera initiated a move to explore more innovative, user-friendly ways for the community to report and track municipal code and state law violations utilizing smartphone technology. The result is theUP2CODE smartphone app and web widget (web page) that is now available to residents via iPhone, Android and any browser with an internet connection.
"UP2CODE is an easy way for San Franciscans to report and track code enforcement issues to my office," said Herrera. "It encourages residents to be proactive by using the on-the-go smartphone app to combine efforts to improve neighborhoods and protect health and safety. Thank you to the community groups who helped test the app last year and provided feedback which refined the app. It's one tool we can all use to make San Francisco a safer and beautiful place to call home."
The UP2CODE app was developed to interact with SF311, San Francisco's citywide call and information center. The app utilizes mobile phone camera and global positioning system, or GPS, technology to streamline and coordinate code violation reporting with corresponding city departments. SeeClickFix, the New Haven, Conn.-based mobile application developer, worked in partnership with City Attorney staff to customize the app for San Francisco's codes and neighborhoods.
Data collected is used to better build code violation lawsuits, collect evidence and speed up remedies of nuisance code violations. It will help other city leaders, department heads and agencies better identify and prioritize code enforcement issues. In an effort to strive for transparency in City government, much of the data collected is accessible to app users in near-real-time. Reported violations are viewable on interactive maps, as is the status of each individual report. Users can even use advance features to set up "watch areas" -- from a single block to an entire neighborhood -- to monitor all reports within a specific geographic area.
For more information (including important safety tips), social media plug-ins, and to use the web widget, visit: http://www.UP2CODE.org.
To download the UP2CODE app on your mobile device visit:
• The App Store for iPhones, or
• Google Play for Android
The Office of the City Attorney's Code Enforcement Team coordinates the efforts of the Building, Health, Planning, Public Works, Fire and Police Departments to identify and respond effectively to health and safety and other public nuisance issues in San Francisco's neighborhoods. When a code violation is reported, the Code Enforcement Team responds by coordinating the investigation and abatement process by the relevant city agencies and, when necessary, pursuing additional remedies against violators through civil court action.
The City Attorney's Community Relations Division is available to make UP2CODE presentations and conduct group trainings on how to use the app and its numerous functions. Contact Jen Drake, Deputy Director, Community Relations at email@example.com or (415) 554-4695.