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Here's what's happening in our neck of the woods.
Fewer than 20 percent of mail-in ballots in California have been returned just a few days before Tuesday's primary election. That means a lot of folks might still be trying to make up their minds on the races and propositions up for a vote. Here's a quick rundown of some of the top contests:
- Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom still leads the pack in the race for governor, while fellow Democrat and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is battling it out with Republican businessman John Cox for second place in the top-two primary.
- The top candidates in San Francisco's mayoral race are all Democrats, but on San Francisco's heavily skewed political spectrum, Board of Supervisors President London Breed is seen as more moderate, Supervisor Jane Kim is viewed as the most progressive, and former Supervisor and State Sen. Mark Leno is somewhere in between. Unsurprisingly, homelessness is the issue voters most want to hear about from the candidates.
- Regional Measure 3 would raise bridge tolls on the seven state-owned bridges in the Bay Area by $3 by 2025 to raise funds for 35 transportation projects aimed at long-term reduction of traffic congestion.
- San Francisco Propositions C and D are in competition with each other. Both would levy a tax on commercial rents in San Francisco. Proposition C would put that money toward child care and early education programs, while Proposition D would use the money to pay for affordable housing and homelessness services. But only one can pass.
- And Proposition E would ban all flavored tobacco products in San Francisco. And that's just one of several health and science-related propositions on the ballot.
And for those voting in San Francisco, here's a reminder about how the city's ranked choice voting system works.
It's not uncommon for people to tell adult tourists to avoid the Tenderloin because of the open drug use that often happens on its streets.
Now imagine being one of the more than 3,000 kids that's estimated to live and go to school in the neighborhood. How do you keep those kids safe?
Dozens of "corner captains" with Safe Passage put on their bright green vests each day and patrol the streets of the Tenderloin, escorting the kids from corner to corner, street to street, making sure they can walk safely through their neighborhood.
I never know what to do with old batteries. I know I'm not supposed to just throw them away, so I usually end up shoving them all in a drawer together.
Turns out, that's a bad idea. According to the folks behind "Avoid the Spark," a new public education campaign designed for people like me, leaving batteries in a drawer together could lead to a potential explosion. Yikes.
The California Report Magazine is asking people to write in with a letter to the first person in their family to move to California and how their dream has -- or hasn't -- held up.
This week, Sarah Stroe wrote to her grandparents, Jews who left Europe after World War II. As a descendent of European Jews myself, her letter resonated with me, especially her final line:
My California dream is a California that embraces its history as a safe haven for immigrants, that loves and celebrates difference and takes pride in the ever-changing and mixing landscape of Californians.
You can write your own letter here, and maybe it'll make it on air.
Never in my life have I been surrounded by as much wealth as I have while living in Palo Alto. Houses almost always cost at least seven figures, and it seems like everyone either works at Stanford or Google.
All that wealth just became too much for one now-former Palo Alto pastor who took to Twitter to call his town “disgusting” and an “elitist shit den of hate.”
The 28-year-old associate pastor, Gregory Stevens, says people in Palo Alto like to think of themselves as liberals and progressives who care about social justice, but they fail to walk the walk.
"In a liberal’s mind in Palo Alto, it's civility that you're supposed to have, and not a passion and a fire for equality, for equity and for justice," he explains.