Senator Dianne Feinstein generously opened her home last Friday for a gathering convened by the Bay Area Council to raise support for the campaign we’re leading to defeat Proposition F on the November ballot in San Francisco that aims to drain one of California’s largest sources of clean, reliable drinking water. Sen. Feinstein spoke eloquently about the history of Hetch Hetchy and the importance of Hetch Hetchy in supplying pristine water and clean energy to millions of residents and businesses not just in San Francisco, but throughout the Bay Area. San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee also attended and remarked about the deceptive and dangerous nature of Measure F, and joined Sen. Feinstein in encouraging the 120 assembled guests to contribute to the campaign. Among the many business and community leaders answering the call was the San Francisco Foundation, whose CEO Sandra Hernandez announced a $100,000 contribution to defeat Proposition F. Hernandez, in an article in the San Francisco Business Times this week, said “we want people to understand that water is an important public policy issue, and we think that Proposition F will have a disproportionate negative impact on low-income people to get access to something as simple as clean water.” The event was followed this week with good news from the San Francisco Superior Court, which rejected a challenge by Proposition F proponents who were seeking to change the ballot language to obscure the true intent of the measure to drain Hetch Hetchy. Law firm and Bay Area Council member Hanson Bridgett helped argue against any change. To participate in our Save Hetch Hetchy effort, contact Matt Regan.
Some of the world’s leading companies and foremost experts in designing and building the “smart cities’ of the future will be gathering for the Bay Area Council’s inaugural U.S.-China Collaboration Symposium on September 28 hosted by Marvell Technology in Santa Clara and featuring Governor and former U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman Jr. The all-day symposium will bring together industry leaders in infrastructure, technology, energy, healthcare, urban planning, and sustainable development along with top government officials from the U.S. and China to discuss the need and tremendous opportunities for building smart cities. Among the companies participating in panel discussions throughout the day are the Energy Foundation, GE, Seimens One, Chevron Energy Solutions, VMware, HP, Cisco, HSBC and AECOM. Joining them are government leaders from the Bay Area, including Oakland Mayor Jean Quan, Palo Alto Mayor Yiaway Yeh and Santa Clara Mayor Jamie Matthews, along with top officials from some of China’s premier high-tech regions. Tickets and sponsorship opportunities are still available.
The Bay Area Council and other opponents of a costly and dangerous plan to dismantle the Hetch Hetchy Water and Power System scored a significant victory at the San Francisco Ballot Simplification Committee. The Committee, whose job it is to ensure that any measure appearing on the ballot provides voters with a clear and honest description of what they’re voting on, sided with us in revising the ballot language. Supporters of draining Hetch Hetchy had sought to hide the measure’s true intent behind language implying that the Hetch Hetchy’s 2.5 million users are not careful stewards of this precious resource. With the expert legal help of Bay Area Council member HansonBridgett, we succeeded in convincing the Committee that the description should plainly state the intent of the measure to drain Hetch Hetchy. The Bay Area Council continues to work with Mayor Ed Lee, the Chamber of Commerce, the Committee on Jobs and other business, elected and community leaders in building a growing coalition to defeat the measure, which past polling has shown can win without a vigorous and well-funded campaign. To participate in the Council’s Hetch Hetchy work, contact Matt Regan.