March 2015 Newsletter


It’s great to be back in touch for our March newsletter. We’re gearing up to head into our City’s budget season and have been as active as ever here at the Board.

Over the past month, I introduced legislation to ban tobacco related products – including chewing tobacco – at stadiums, sports arenas, and playing fields across San Francisco.  San Francisco would be the first city in the country to pass such a law, and I don’t want our children’s future in San Francisco, especially those that play baseball, to be a future with tobacco.  I also hosted a hearing to discuss our recently passed short-term rentals law that focused on the enforcement of the law, and how we can more proactively as a City create less bureaucratic red tape for the registration law. And, lastly, my Board colleagues unanimously supported my legislation that calls on the Archdiocese of San Francisco to respect the rights of their teachers and administrators in contract negotiations.  

I hope you’re looking forward to the start of Spring as much as I am, and look forward to being back in touch next month. 

Legislation & Policy Update


Archdiocese of San Francisco 

Earlier in the month, I introduced legislation that was unanimously passed by my colleagues on the Board that calls on the Archdiocese of San Francisco to respect the rights of their teachers and administrators in contract negotiations. I am a proud Catholic. Proud to have been born and raised here in San Francisco within our Catholic School system, extremely proud to have been educated and influenced so greatly by the Jesuits, and proud to be part of a practicing Catholic family. However, these past few weeks have been some of the most challenging weeks of my life in the Catholic Church, and I know I am not alone. My hope is that no matter what religion, as a faith community, we can ultimately move past these recent events, rededicate ourselves to the missions of our churches, and once again focus on being men and women for others here in the City of Saint Francis. To see my full statement that I read at the Board of Supervisors, please visit the link here:

SHort_Term_Rentals.jpgShort-Term Rentals Enforcement Hearing

At the February 24th meeting of the Board of Supervisors I introduced a hearing request to discuss the Planning Department’s capabilities to enforce the recently passed short-term rentals ordinance, and the financial resources necessary for effective enforcement – the hearing was held at our Budget and Finance Committee on March 3rd. I am a strong supporter of home-sharing, and know that part of the success of the law lies with its enforcement. In the hearing, I highlighted areas where the City can be more effective within the current confines of the law, and also discuss the barriers, limitations, and bureaucratic red-tape that may be hindering the law's effectiveness.

DSC_0059.JPGAnti-Chewing Tobacco Legislation

On February 24th I joined national, state, and local public health and youth advocates and leaders to announce my intentions to ban chewing tobacco and other tobacco related products at stadiums, sports arenas, and playing fields across San Francisco – I introduced the legislation formally at the Board on March 10th. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that smokeless tobacco contains at least 28 known carcinogens and causes oral, pancreatic and esophageal cancer - as well as other serious health problems such as gum disease, tooth decay, and mouth lesions. What is even more alarming is that even as cigarette use continues a steady decline among youth, smokeless tobacco use among that population has remained stagnant over the years. Each year, about 535,000 kids age 12-17 use smokeless tobacco for the first time. I believe it is time for San Francisco to step up to the plate and say that chewing tobacco has no place on our athletic fields in order to send a strong public health message to our youth and broader community.

PACE Financing for Multifamily Units  PACE_Financing.jpg

At the February 9th meeting of the Board of Supervisors, I introduced legislation calling on our Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development, the San Francisco Housing Authority, the Department of Public Health, the Human Services Agency to pursue property assessed clean energy (PACE) financing for renewable energy, energy efficiency, and water efficiency upgrades for publicly funded multifamily units buildings whenever feasible and proactively. The PACE pilot program announced by Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Castro and Governor Jerry Brown will enable PACE financing for certain multifamily properties, which will open up PACE financing options to an entire segment of properties that hadn't been previously possible. Property upgrades using PACE have resulted in saving money not only on repair costs, but also on monthly utility and water bills. With our residential PACE program that I spearheaded last year set to launch in April, I look forward to the City participating in PACE as well. The legislation should be heard in Committee in April. 


Community Spotlight

Pamela-Joyner-Philanthropist.jpgFebruary 24, 2015: Pamela Joyner

I was extremely proud to honor Pamela Joyner for the Board of Supervisor's celebration of Black History Month. Pamela is a much accomplished businesswoman, is passionate about the arts community and an advocate for public schools. Along with founding Avid Partners, LLC, in 2000, Pamela serves as a Trustee to several art associations across the country and was also appointed as a member of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities. Pamela has opened her lovely home’s Private Arts Collection for the public to tour all the beautiful art pieces she collects. She donated the proceeds to the non-profit Enterprise for High School Students (EHSS) which empowers and prepares young people for success in higher education. Pamela is a wonderful woman and I am proud to call her a District 2 resident.

Office of Supervisor Mark Farrell
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Room 244, San Francisco, CA 94102
Phone: (415) 554-7752 Fax: (415) 554-7843
Legislative Aides:,, 

In the Community


February 3, 2015 - California College of the Arts' MBA in Civic Innovation Launch
I was honored to speak about the challenges faced in leading the open government movement, creating open data legislation standards, and the growth of the civic technological industry. It's encouraging to see an MBA program focus on Civic Innovation, and look forward to what the graduates will have to offer.


February 6, 2015 - Black History Month Kickoff
I was happy to attend this event hosted by San Francisco African American Historical and Cultural Society to commemorate the contributions of our African American population here in San Francisco and beyond. Our great city is  full of rich African-American culture, and it was a pleasure to be a part of the celebration. 

BTSblog.jpgFebruary 11, 2015 – Jewish Community Relations Council “Behind the Scenes”

I was happy to participate in celebrating honorees and the Jewish Community Relations Council for their critically important work and accomplishments for our community. JCRC continues to work toward mobilization of the Jewish community on many critical issues and expands its voice in the public sphere. The council promotes meaningful relationships among diverse ethnic, racial, religious and interest groups.



February 12, 2015 - SF General - Heroes and Hearts Luncheon

It was great to attend the annual luncheon, which serves to bring the community together to celebrate the tremendous role that San Francisco General Hospital plays in our City. It's a fantastic event that raises critical funds to support San Francisco General.

20080519155343_san-francisco-palace-of-fine-arts-250x166.jpgFebruary 20, 2015 - Palace of Fine Arts Centennial Kick-Off Celebration

It was an honor to attend the 100th anniversary of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition the World’s Fair which celebrated the completion of the Panama Canal. The City’s cultural, civic and historical organizations annually commemorate the PPIE’s historical significance. It was also a pleasure to speak the next day about how it transformed our neighborhoods as we know them today.

DSC_0061.JPGFebruary 24, 2015 - Anti-Chewing Tobacco Press Conference
It was great to join national, state, and local public health and youth advocates and leaders to announce my intention to ban chewing tobacco and other tobacco related products at athletic fields across San Francisco. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that smokeless tobacco contains at least 28 known carcinogens and causes oral, pancreatic and esophageal cancer - as well as other serious health problems such as gum disease, tooth decay, and mouth lesions. 

Upcoming Events

District 2

Slices of Life, California: Composite Photographs on Canvas. Photography by Michael Smith-Heimer

Fort Mason, Building A. Through April 30
Stop by this daily exhibit on cold winter days to view these composite photographs. With his shift to digital photography, in addition to conventional images, Michael has turned his attention to creating large-format images to capture broad "slices" of the visual environment. These photographic images are composites; merging as many as 40 images in scenes that portray large, sweeping views of locations, often including elements from the peripheral vision that are missing from traditional photographs of scenes. Visit the link for more information. 

Off the Grid
Fort Mason Center (Fridays 5-10pm), through the end of October
California's largest weekly evening street food market, Off the Grid, returns with over 30 different food trucks. Come and sample the endless variety of foods California has to offer while listening to live music. Sip on a cocktail whipped up by recent James Beard longlisters Rye on the Road, or try out a Magnolia beer! And don't miss out on the new artist-in-residency program, which will feature several works on rotation. Visit the link for more information.

Off the Grid - Picnic at the Presidio
Presidio Main Post Lawn (Sundays 11am-4pm), through the end of October
Good news for fans of the popular Sunday afternoon event, Picnic at the Presidio, which has returned after a seasonal hiatus. Come and enjoy the warmer weather to the sounds of a live DJ. Rent out a blanket, chair, and some board games, and don't forget to check out their selection of mimosa and bloody Mary kits. Off the Grid is also back at the picnic, so don't miss out on the food vendors showcasing the best eats of California! Visit the link for more information.

Presidio Book Salon: History of the North American West
Presidio Officer's Club, March 28th from 1-3pm
The traditional book club has been revamped as an inclusive, public program that anyone can take part in, whether or not they have read the featured book. Everyone is welcome to attend the contextualizing remarks by the club facilitator and participate in or listen to the discussion of both the book Empires, Nations, and Families: A History of the North American West, 1800-1860 and related topics more broadly. The event is free, but an RSVP is required. Visit the link for more information.

Union Street’s 24th Annual Easter Parade & Spring Celebration
Sunday, April 5th 10am-5pm
The 24th annual event celebrates and showcases the diverse community of San Francisco and features some of Union Street's best restaurants serving attendees in an outdoor bistro setting. A variety of children's and family activities are the focus of the event and include; large inflatable bounces, kids' rides and games, a climbing wall, a hands-on children's activities area, costumed characters, a petting zoo, a pony ride and entertainment from some of the Bay Area's best musicians. The parade begins at 2pm. For more information please visit 

5th Spring Book Sale by Friends of the San Francisco Public Library
April 1st-5th Fort Mason Festival Pavilion 10am-6m
Check out this fun event and pick up some new books and media. Proceeds benefit the San Francisco Public Library, and products are $3 or less! Visit this website to learn more

City Wide

Fillmore Beautification Micro Grant Applications
Have a good idea on how to help beautify our City? Than send in an application to apply for a Micro Grant to help turn that idea into reality! For applications and further details, please visit 

Request Free Bulky Item Pick Up Through 311
Year Round
San Francisco residents can now request free curbside pickup of bulky household items. Now unwanted appliances, mattresses, furniture and electronics can be easily scheduled for pickup to help keep the neighborhood free of illegal curbside dumping. Check out and to learn more.

27th Annual Pi Day | Exploratorium Free Day
Exploratorium, Pier 15, March 14th from 10am to 5pm
Join The Exploratorium for the 27th Annual Pi Day, an international holiday celebrating the never-ending number π (3.14159…), and the spirit of wonder and quirk that science inspires. The event was founded in 1988 by Exploratorium physicist and “Prince of Pi” Larry Shaw. Check out  to learn more.

2015 St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Festival
Downtown San Francisco | Howard & 2nd Streets, March 14th from 10am to 5pm
The West Coast’s largest Irish event celebrating Irish history and culture, the 164th Annual San Francisco St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Festival, attracts some 100,000 revelers every year and is one of the city’s most popular events. Check out to learn more.

SFFP Career Information Session
March 19th 6:30-8pm 2310 Folsom Street
Stop by this information session, meet firefighters and ask them questions on what it's like to be a firefighter. Please visit their website at to learn more!

“3rd On Third” Arts & Music
Bayview Opera House, March 20th from 5-8pm
This community-wide arts celebration will feature pop-up galleries, food trucks, a beer and wine garden, a special children's zone with free art-making activities, and a stage featuring Bayview talent. Come out and see why the Third Street Corridor is a top destination for great food, art, and entertainment. Check out to learn more.

SF History Night: San Francisco History Association
St. Philip's Church, March 31st at 7:30pm
Each month, the SFHA hosts a themed talk on subjects ranging from the history of the San Francisco Fire Department to appreciation of the City's unique Victorian houses to vintage stories and photos from Playland-at-the-Beach. Admission to event is priced at $5 for the general public, but is free for SFHA members. Check out to learn more.

@Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz
Through April 26th
The Chinese artist Ai Weiwei is internationally renowned for work that defies the distinction between art and activism. In this exhibition of new works created specifically for Alcatraz, Ai responds to the island’s layered legacy as a 19th-century military fortress, a notorious federal penitentiary, a site of Native American heritage and protest, and now one of America’s most visited national parks. Revealing new perspectives on Alcatraz, the exhibition raises questions about freedom of expression and human rights that resonate far beyond this particular place: 


In the Media 

February 1st, 2015
Marina Times, “Farrell Retains Budget Seat”

February 2nd, 2015
Gov Tech, “San Francisco Officials To Discuss MBA in Civic Innovation”

February 2nd, 2015
CPMC, “CPMC selects developer for California campus”

February 3rd, 2015
SF Business Times, “TMG lands deal to develop huge housing site now home to CPMC's Presidio Heights campus”

February 5th, 2015
SF Chronicle, “S.F. welcomes La Perla store with open arms”

February 10th, 2015
SF Examiner, “Unisex restrooms needed citywide”

February 18th, 2015
SF Gate, “Archbishop on crash course with S.F., state”           

February 23th, 2015
SF Gate, “Board of Supes steps into fray over Catholic school morality clauses”

February 24th, 2015
KRWG, “California Lawmaker Introduces Measure To Make Baseball Tobacco-Free”

February 24th, 2015
California Newswire, “Landmark Measure to Make Baseball Tobacco-Free proposed by Calif. Assemblyman Tony Thurmond”

February 24th, 2015
CBS SF Bay Area, “San Francisco May Ban Tobacco At All Baseball Venues”

February 24th, 2015
ABC7 News, “SF Supervisor fights proposed morality clause in catholic schools”

February 24th, 2015
Huffington Post, “California May Shut Down Baseball's Tobacco Habit”

February 24th, 2015
Virtual Press Office, “California, San Francisco Introduce Measures to Make Baseball Tobacco-Free”

February 25th, 2015
SF Gate, “San Francisco’s version of the war on drugs”

February 25th, 2015
LA Times, “S.F. archbishop stands firm in face of pressure on morality clauses”

February 25th, 2015
Time, “Chewing Tobacco Could Be Banned In California Ballparks”

February 25th, 2015
Sports Illustrated, “Bill proposes ban of tobacco at all California baseball fields”

February 25th, 2015
SF Gate, “SF supervisor proposes ban of tobacco at all baseball fields”

February 26th, 2015
CBS SF Bay Area, “Bay Area Lawmakers Propose Ban On Chewing Tobacco At CA Baseball Parks Including AT&T”

February 26th, 2015
SF Appeal, “State, Local Legislators Propose Ban On Chewing Tobacco At Ballparks”

February 28th, 2015
San Francisco Magazine, “The Outsiders”  


Office of Supervisor Mark Farrell
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Room 244, San Francisco, CA 94102
Phone: (415) 554-7752 Fax: (415) 554-7843
Legislative Aides:,, 
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