Thursday, June 14, 2007

Daly Misread Documents

Pat Murphy, Sentinel reports San Francisco Supervisor Chris Daly Tuesday cancelled today’s scheduled Budget and Finance Committee set to rewrite the City budget without approval by the full San Francisco Board of Supervisors.

Daly, who chairs the Budget and Finance Committee, told Board colleagues Daly wants instead “to ascertain whether public resources were inappropriately used for electioneering purposes and whether Newsom ‘07 is appropriately engaging the legislative process before making crucial decisions in this year’s budget process.”

In speaking during Roll Call submissions of Tuesday’s Board meeting, Daly stated his office had “acquired documents that indicate the Mayor’s Office may have exercised undue influence to secure public space in front of City Hall for a Wednesday budget rally.”

“I am very concerned about the cloud of impropriety surrounding the Mayor’s
budget engagement…Documents show that we appropriately reserved space for our
budget rally first. Fair is fair.”

Competing rallies in support of the City Budget proposed by Mayor Newsom and in support of Daly’s rewritten budget had been scheduled at the same time and in the same location on City Hall steps at high noon Wednesday.

Daly complained, both to Board colleagues and to the San Francisco Ethics Commission, that the pro-Newsom rally was given preferential scheduling despite Daly applying for rally permit before the pro-Newsom rally permit application.
Mayoral Press Secretary Nathan Ballard responded the pro-Newsom rally application was submitted first.

“We were there first,” Ballard told the Sentinel.


“He’s referencing documents that I actually provided to him pursuant to a
Sunshine request and he’s misreading those documents,” stated Ballard.

Ballard added Daly simply lost his nerve to hold the committee hearing.

“Chris Daly lost his nerve when he realized that Mayor Newsom’s allies were
going to descend upon City Hall in support of the Mayor’s Budget. And so he
cancelled the hearing.”

The City budget likely would have been rewritten without approval by the full San Francisco Board of Supervisors.

Through a procedural move, the full Board would have been be left only with a budget as revised by Supervisor Chris Daly for final Board consideration.

Daly’s rewritten budget allowed no independent scrutiny by the Budget Analyst’s Office available to commissioners in past City budget reviews.

Passage appeared probable with majority committee membership sympathetic to the Daly motion. Three votes are needed to pass the measure.

Membership consists of Supervisors Chris Daly, Tom Ammiano, Ross Mirkarimi, Bevan Dufty, and Sean Elsbernd.

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