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Civil Grand Jury reports (Volume 1976-77) online

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the passage of Proposition 13 may have on the Recreation and
Park Department. We were Informed by the Assistant Director,
Mr. Mallory, that the department Is determined to give the
best service possible despite potential cuts by maximizing
the Internal cuts rather that the external cuts. This public-
spirited attitude Is commendable.


The Parking Authority is one of San Francisco's few
financially self supporting departments. Including the
director Margaret L. Brady, the Parking Authority has a staff
of 3 full-time employees which is apparently enough to run this
department efficiently.

The main purpose of the Parking Authority is to
provide adequate parking for motor vehicles particularly in
the congested commercial areas of both downtown San Francisco
and in the outlying districts. The revenues collected by the
Parking Authority for the off-street parking fund can only be
used to alleviate parking problems. Thus, there is no risk of
losing these special funds for parking developments to the
general fund of the City.

In the downtown area the Parking Authority has
structured the rates in the City-owned parking garages to
encourage the short term user and to discourage commuter park-
ing. This policy can fulfill two goals: (1) providing for
the short term parker will stimulate the economy by insuring
the shopper a place to park, (2) the commuter may turn to
public transit as an alternative.

No glaring problems seem to exist in this department.
The passage of Proposition 13 will probably not have much of
an effect on the Parking Authority.

James K. Broderick

Margarita V. Tallerico

Thomas J. Cook, Chairman



Despite the completion of an ultra-modern building at
170 Otis Street at a cost In excess of $8,500,000.00, the
Department of Social Services will still be unable to offer the
City's population a "one stop" service operation. The depart-
ment operations are too vast to house in one structure, and will
still be spread out over a wide area. Previously housed in
five locations, the new Social Service complex will offer a
wide field of services from four locations. The new structure
at 170 Otis will house the administrative and accounting offices,
and handle Aid to Families with Dependent Children, General
Assistance cases, and Child Welfare. Medi-Cal and some General
Assistance will be available at 150 Otis Street, Adult services
at 1686 Mission Street, and Food Stamp service at 1360 Mission
Streets. Despite the fact that considerable planning went into
setting up access routes for handicapped persons, apparently no
concern was given to the citizens that have to cross the street
from 150 Otis to 1680 Mission Street. Consideration should be
given to providing a crosswalk with controlled signal lights
to assist those citizens or City workers who have to conduct
business within both structures.

Under the very capable leadership of Edwin S.
Sarsfleld, General Manager, the department has undergone a
series of structural and operational changes, which have in-
troduced many new concepts, and a more effective delivery of
services to the City's population. Mr. Sarsfleld should be
commended for the positive results which have been achieved in
the AFDC program, the drastic reduction in the error rate, and
the savings of millions of dollars in undue claims. The in-
troduction of the "team concept" in child welfare cases, and
the creation of the Family Reunification Unit, clearly evidence
the department's approach to reducing potential caseloads through
preventive measures, and assuring that payments are awarded to
those that truly need assistance. The introduction of the "on
the job training" program leading to a master's degree in
psychology, and related subjects, can only result in developing
skilled specialists in tune with the varied problems, a keener
understanding of the caseload, and a more efficient delivery of

Recommendation :

That a crosswalk with controlled signal lights be .
installed on Otis street between 150 Otis and 1680 Mission



The purpose of the Human Rights Commission Is to
promote the rights of every citizen for equal economic, polit-
ical, and educational opportunity; for equal accommodations in
all business establishments in the City; for equal service and
protection by all public agencies; and eliminate prejudice and
discrimination because of race, religion, age, sex, or sexual
preference. The commission, which was created in 1964, handled
over 844 rights complaints last year in areas involving employ-
ment, housing, education, and a new element, namely the problems
of the gay community. There were over 73 documented gay -oriented
complaints, and for the first time, the commission established
a Gay Advisory Committee. There is also a gay representative
on each of the standing committees.

Under the capable direction of director Grant Mickens,
the commission has been developing programs and creative approach-
es to achieving maximum impact to getting public jobs and con-
tracts for minorities. Minority outreach programs have achieved
worthwhile success because of the commission's continued efforts
to strengthen community and neighborhood imput. This is evidenc-
ed by the continued delivery of health case service to many low
income families. The commission implements and monitors an
affirmative action program for the City. Because of this program
minority balance is maintained in government procurement, and
awarding of job contracts.

The Commission is made up of 15 commissioners, who
represent a broad cross-section of city groups, namely, employer,
labor, religious, racial, ethnic, gay, etc. In San Francisco
where minorities are nearly a majority of the population, the
Human Rights commission presents a well defined representative
group reaching out for maximum impact.


Since its creation in 1972, the Commission on the Aging
has made substantial progress in its' programs of providing
service and assistance to the elderly citizen. A keen aware-
ness of the problems of the senior citizens caused the commis-
sion to introduce its 1 most successful program to date, that
is, the "walk-in information center, and referral service". As
a result of this program, information vital to the needs of the
elderly is disseminated to all areas of the City. Information



on the many senior citizen centers, active programs, nutrition
centers, etc., is readily available. A senior citizen informa-
tion telephone service is also provided on a 24 hour basis.
This telephone service enables senior citizens to have access
to many programs and activities previously unknown to them. It
also provides the elderly with one central number to call for
a wide range of health issues, housing assistance, and permits
better utilization of existing services. The commission also
arranges for seminars and workshops targeted towards helping
senior citizens to help themselves, and also provides for pos-
sible job opportunities.

An amendment to the original ordinance is under study,
which proposes to abolish the existing Commission on the Aging,
and establish a Senior Citizen Affairs Authority, with a Senior
Citizen Advisory Council. The proposed S.C.A.A. would consist
of seven members appointed by the Mayor, with the advice and
consent of the Board of Supervisors. Pour of these members
must be 55 years of age at the time of their appointments, and
must have demonstrated knowledge of the problems and needs of
the elderly.

The Senior Citizen Advisory Council shall consist of
twenty-two members, eleven of whom shall be appointed by the
Board of Supervisors, and eleven of whom shall be elected. All
twenty -two must be at least fifty-five years old. The balance
of the council will be the same ex-officio members as specified
in the original ordinance. All members of the council shall
serve without compensation.

The programs of the commission are administered by
the Area agency which has been temporarily headed by Mr. Larry
Simi. A new executive director, Mr. Glenn McKibbin, has been
appointed, and will take office in July. Mr. McKibbin is a
former professor at Syracuse University. We congratulate Mr.
McKibbin on his appointment, and encourage him to exert a
determined willingness to fight for the rights of the elderly.


The commission was created in 1976 with an original
staff of two permanent employees, and three CETA employees,
working with a $66,000 budget. Today they have two permanent,
and nine CETA employees, with an Operational budget of $82,000.
The commission has eight standing committees, some of which are



sub-divided into task forces. These committees dedicated to
the pursual of the rights of women, are working in the areas
of criminal justice, education, employment, health and child
care, housing, legislation, media and public information, and
varied special projects. All of these committees are made up
mostly of volunteer women citizens, dedicated to establishing
the rights and equality of women. A new task force was recent-
ly established to pursue minority outreach, targeting in on
Third World lesbians, disabled, and elderly women.

The commission, under the very capable direction of
Mrs. Susan Heller, is now involved in trying to disseminate
information about the commission activities in as many lan-
guages as possible in order to reach non-English speaking

The work of the commission has become so involved and
diversified, that the only two permanent employees cannot handle
all the varied aspects involved. The addition of two more per-
manent employees would enable the commission to expand its
activities, and present a more experienced approach in address-
ing the needs of the woman citizen.

The building which now houses the commission, is owned
by HEW and is being turned over to the New College of Law. As
a consequence the commission is looking desperately for a new
home. The commission is interested in renting property within
a four block radius of City Hall, so they can easily appear
for hearings, establishe better communications with other City
departments, and facilitate mail pick-up. The quarters must
also be in an area which affords a fair degree of safety to the

Recommendations ;

1. That two permanent employees, be added to the
staff to enable the commission to pursue their activities with
experience and expertise.

2. That suitable quarters be established for the
commission which adequately suit their needs.

Jane Reeves
Robert Smith

Edward Sosa, Chairman



The Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) is appointed
by the Mayor and is subject to confirmation and approval by
the Board of Supervisors. Mr. Roger Boas was appointed during
the 1976-77 fiscal year and his term runs for 10 years. The
CAO is responsible to the Mayor and the Board of Supervisors
for the administration of all affairs of the City and County
of San Francisco that are placed under his Jurisdiction:

Department of Public Works
Department of Public Health
Department of Electricity
Department of Finance and Records
Office of the Coroner
Purchasing Department
Real Estate Department
California Academy of Sciences

As can be seen from above, the CAO bears tremendous
responsibility for an extremely large number of City depart-
ments with a broad range of governmental business matters.
Besides performing the many faceted duties involved with a
bureaucracy of this size, Mr. Boas must busy himself with:

1) Coordinating the planning, design and building of the
Yerba Buena Convention Center;

2) Disbursement of the Hotel Tax;

3) Administrating the massive Waste Water Project;

4) Consulting continually with the Mayor, Board of Supervisors,
various Commissions and participating in various Board
proceedings .

This office obviously requires a high-energy person
with a capable and dedicated staff. The hard-working
Mr. Boas and his staff do their best to keep all departments
and projects running as smoothly as possible.

It was difficult for this committee to communicate
extensively with Mr. Boas because of the heavy schedule he
keeps and the manner in which business is conducted in his
office. However, Mr. Boas introduced us to the knowledgeable
Paul Scannell, his executive assistant, who together with
Mr. Boas assisted us with our questions. The unavailability
of Mr. Boas, caused by having to divide his attention in so
many directions, has been expressed by some department heads.
Department heads are met with frustration when attempting to
contact Mr. Boas with a matter needing immediate attention,



and being told that Mr. Boas has his hands full with the Yerba
Buena Project.

It seems that these inevitable gaps in upper-level
management communication surfaced this year as one of the
factors in the deplorable situation in the Tax Collector's
office. While this Grand Jury commends Mr. Boas for prompt
action taken in the aftermath of the Parking Meter Division
arrests, we are concerned with the "blind faith" and "quasi-
honor system" used in upper and middle management down to first
level supervision. When asked in what manner department heads
report to his office, Mr. Boas replied that weekly written
reports are submitted for his perusal. Mr. Boas then delegates
to his staff any action to be taken that he does not see to
himself. In light of now known short work days of some
employees, and general laxity of supervision; it is apparent
that guidelines of better communication and closer supervision
are in order.

We recommend the possibility of frequent meetings
between department heads and the CAO or his staff. As
opposed to weekly submitted status reports, these face to face
airings of needs and problem points of individual City depart-
ments should close the communication gap as well as promote
closer supervision.

In short, Mr. Boas should re-direct some of his
relentless energy from the time-consuming Yerba Buena project,
or the long range Waste Water project to the administrating of
the eight City departments directly under him, in order to
best serve the residents of San Francisco.

Yerba Buena Convention Center

As stated earlier, Roger Boas has concentrated much
of his administrative talent toward the completion of the
Yerba Buena Center (YBC). After some 15 years of discussion,
debate and legal contention, the YBC is close to being a
reality. This year the Board of Supervisors voted overwhelming-
ly in favor of going ahead with the project. We congratulate
Mr. Boas and staff for their success in compiling the complex
reports needed to prove the project economically feasible.

Initially approved by San Francisco voters in a
1976 election, the YBC is considered necessary because of the
conventions and tourism it will attract, which are major
factors in the economic foundation of San Francisco. Consul-
tants to the YBC state that the project would produce 873 to
1,680 permanent Jobs directly, and an equal number of



permanent Jobs indirectly.

The costs of building the facility are calculated
as $100 million. By category they are as follows: land
purchase, $6 million; construction, $82 million; design and
administration, $12 million. The source of these funds is
the Hotel Tax which was raised this year from 6t to 8%. Half
of the 8% is ear-marked to fund the project.

The design of the center is underground. Except for
the above-ground lobby entrance, the center will have a profile
similar to that of Union Square. The construction is slated
to begin in August or September this year, with completion in
mid-1981. Mr. Boas expressed hopes of no more delay.
Opponents of the project, however, are threatening more liti-

Proposition 13 threw gloom over the project because
while all City departments were undergoing massive budget cuts
affecting basic vital services and employee layoffs, the funds
allocated for YBC remained untouched. This resulted in the
San Francisco resident seriously questioning the priority list
of City officials who favor the tourist from Two-Dot, Montana,
over a laid-off City employee resident who must wait half an
hour to Jam on an overcrowded bus due to a 20? reduction in
Muni service.

Waste Water Project

San Francisco is plagued with the serious problem of
an antiquated sewage system that has one conduit for both
sewage and rainwater. During wet weather the system is over-
whelmed by billions of gallons of runoff that mix with raw
sewage, overflow the plant reservoirs, and through 39 over-
flow outlets are dumped untreated into the ocean and bay.

The Federal Waste Quality Act of 1972 prohibits
the discharge of municipal sewage into the ocean unless it has
received secondary treatment. Hence the Waste Water Project
was created to correct the dangerous situation. Since the
project is by Federal mandate, the funding will be 75* federal
funds, 12-1/2% state funds and 12-1/255 City funds, reflected
in the sewer charge on water bills. The immense project will
hopefully be completed by 1987 with a possible cost of
$2 billion.

The original master plan calls for the collection of
rainwater from all over the City to be piped through a cross-
town sewer line to a large processing plant that will be



located south of San Francisco Zoo. From there the treated
wastewater will be discharged through an outfall *♦ miles off
the coast Into the ocean. Richard Sklar, Manager of the
Waste Water Program, predicts the plan could be done for $1.5
billion by considering alternatives that eliminate the need
for a cross-town sewer line by building two more plants in the
southeast and northeast ends of the City, thus dumping primary
treated sewage into the bay and ocean.

So the project is presently bogged down in controversy
with the City having to provide evidence that dumpage of
primary treated sewage in bay waters is not harmful to water
quality or disruptive to the marine biological food chain —
all in the interest of saving money on the overall cost of the
plan. In the 1950 's air pollution was not considered a long range
damaging hazard. No monies were invested in a massive plan to
solve the situation which resulted in the disgusting air pollu-
tion problem Los Angeles must deal with today. We do not want
the same occurence In our beloved bay waters. Since many San
Franciscans do not put a price tag on our bay, Mr. Boas should
urge Mr. Sklar and the consulting firm of Met calf and Eddy to
comply with federal and state recommendations of secondary
treated dumping in ocean waters and not to attempt to cut costs
by primary treated dumpage in bay waters.


Mr. Boas told the Grand Jury that he will direct his
attention to solving the problems of the following departments:
Tax Collector, Public Works and Public Health. In examining
the CAO it should be noted that Mr. Boas replaced the able
Mr. Thomas Mellon in 1976 after his 12 years of service In the
difficult office. Mr. Boas spent the first year in office
acquiring a competent staff and listing many old problems
inherited from Mr. Mellon, as well as new problems to be faced.
His newness to the Job of city administrator over 3uch a
conglomerate of departments and projects must be considered
when aiming criticism. The Grand Jury is impressed with
Mr. Boas' boundless energy and dedication of his staff. We
look forward to seeing that energy and dedication work for
making a better San Francisco in the future.


Under the capable direction of Boyd G. Stephens, M.D. ,
the Coroner's office is responsible for diagnosing the cause
and manner of death of 2,500 death cases reported to his office.


CORONER (continued)

The Coroner's office has authority of search and seizure,
autopsy and inquest. Since it is not uncommon to receive cases
from outside the City, state or country, the staff works with
health departments and consults world-wide.

The Coroner may be called to testify in Court as an
expert witness, detailing what happened, when and how.
Autopsies sometimes result in diagnostic studies where communi-
cable diseases are discovered, giving valuable information for
the living. One example of this: a fireman involved in a
resuscitation attempt who then goes home to his family. These
factors contribute to a basic problem at the Coroner's office:
an increasing work load, with the necessity to be completely
thorough in conducting autopsies and unbiased in interpreta-
tion because of the direct effect on Judicial decisions,
insurance, licensing, surgical practices, and worker's compen-

While doing an admirable job in dealing with the
increasing work load, Dr. Stephens is faced with a budget
problem. Since the budget is line item, there is no considera-
tion of scientific advances in equipment, price increases or
long range planning. Certain items of sophisticated new
equipment needed to improve the quality and cababilities of
this office have been requested in the budget repeatedly.
Dr. Stephens feels it is essential to have a computerized
inventory of property, evidence, diagnoses and supplies. This
could be shared with the Police Department Laboratory. Because
of budgetary lines the staff is limited in what they can do in
clinical and forensic pathology.

The office has five vehicles which includes three
ambulances, one newly acquired this year. A copy machine,
which was recommended by the last Civil Grand Jury, was finally
budgeted. Dr. Stephens' request for a full-time forensic
pathologist has been cut from the budget. At the date of
writing this report, the aftermath of Proposition 13 has caused
a proposed budget cut of 17?, bringing the $910,652 budget down
to $757,171. This type of budget cut is not conducive to the
high standards expected from the Coroner's office.

An important aspect of the Coroner's Job is close
and cooperative communication with the Police Department. For
the last six years, Dr. Stephens has not been asked to lecture
to the graduating police cadets. This lecture would be
beneficial to their training regarding homicide procedures.

The Grand Jury would like to thank Dr. Stephens
and staff for their cooperative assistance.


CORONER (continued)
Recomaendatlons :

1. Devise a computerized Inventory system, to be used Jointly
with the Police Department.

2. A review of scientific equipment be made, and the necessary
steps taken to update outdated equipment.

3. Authorization for a full-time forensic pathologist.

*» . In spite of the passing of Proposition 13, no budget cuts

be made in the Coroner's office.
5. Dr. Stephens should give lectures to graduating police



This department is responsible for inter-communication
of the Police and Fire Departments, and the installation and
maintenance of parking meters and traffic signals. Under the
leadership of the General Manager, Mr. Burton H. Dougherty, the
department operates through four divisions : Administrative
(including Accounting), Mechanical, Radio and Electrical. This
year the previous division of Fire Alarm Operation was included
with the Electrical Division, thus increasing efficiency in
administrative and operational control.

The much needed 911 Emergency Telephone Service has
been promised to residents for many years. The reason for the
delay is said to be the lack of state funding. Now, in light
of Proposition 13, reliance on state funds seems impractical.
Mr. Dougherty will know by October 1978, if state funding is
realistic or not. Since many major cities in the United States
have this system in operation, alternative sources of funding
should be sought to insure San Francisco residents the safety
and convenience of a common phone number for Police, Fire and
Health assistance.

One of the department's major problems is the damage
done to traffic signals by vehicles. Nineteen percent of the
1977 budget was used for traffic signal maintenance. The
repair or replacement of equipment causes a drain on the budget
as funds recovered from the responsible parties are returned
to the General Fund.

During this committee's tour of facilities we were
impressed with the quality of the electricians* and technicians'

Online LibraryCalifornia. Grand Jury (San Francisco)Civil Grand Jury reports (Volume 1976-77) → online text (page 17 of 32)