Chronicle recommends: Scott Wiener for State Senate

This article first appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle on October 11, 2016.

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Photo: Gabrielle Lurie, Special To The Chronicle
Scott Wiener, who is running for State Senate posed for a photo with Supervisor David Chiu (center) during Wiener's election party, at Blackbird, in San Francisco, California, on Tuesday, June 7, 2016.

Jane Kim is getting a nice push from Big Soda in the tightly contested race to succeed San Francisco Democrat Mark Leno in the state Senate.

The presence of outside money in the city’s center-stage campaign between a dedicated progressive and the more centrist Scott Wiener is not surprising. Independent expenditures from special interests are flowing for and against both Democrats.

Wiener certainly has his share of monied benefactors, including Airbnb.

Voters are being bombarded with mailers from sources such as the Affordable Housing Alliance (a group heavily funded by the American Beverage Association) with a slate card prominently featuring Kim. Wiener is for a tax on sugar-laden sodas; Kim is against it, a rather curious position for a self-proclaimed progressive.

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SF Supervisor Plans to Block Contracts with North Carolina Companies Amid Discriminatory Legislation

This article was first published on NBC Bay Area on July 24, 2016
By Brendan Weber

San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener is setting plans in motion to ban the city's contracts with North Carolina companies amid legislation that limits protections for members of the LGBTQ community.

Via Twitter, Wiener made his announcement while simultaneously applauding a similar announcement made by the NBA earlier in the week.

The NBA said on Thursday that it would be moving the 2017 All-Star Game out of Charlotte as a result of North Carolina's controversial civil laws.

On July 1, the state of North Carolina reassured that employees could utilize state law to sue over employment discrimination on the basis of race, religion and other factors. However, gender identity and sexual orientation were left unprotected.

Members of the LGBTQ community are also not protected from discrimination in hotels and restaurants and transgender individuals are required to use restrooms corresponding to the sex indicated on their birth certificates.


Homeless issues at Castro library addressed

This article first appeared in The Bay Area Reporter on June 29, 2016
By Seth Hemmelgarn
s.hemmelgarn@ebar.com

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A worker from San Francisco Public Works does an early morning cleaning Sunday of the exterior grounds of the Eureka Valley/Harvey Milk Memorial Branch Library. Photo: Rick Gerharter

San Francisco officials and others are working to address homeless encampments and other issues that have persisted for years around the Castro district's Eureka Valley/Harvey Milk Memorial Branch Library.

Gay Supervisor Scott Wiener, whose District 8 includes the Castro, said problems in the area around the library, which is at 1 Jose Sarria Court, include auto break-ins, drug use, "a highly unsanitary encampment" at the library and an "open air bike chop shop," where stolen bicycles are taken apart so their parts can be sold.

Wiener, who's been criticized for his efforts to get tent encampments off the city's sidewalks, said, "It's ridiculous. We just cannot allow that kind of situation to continue."

"It's neither progressive, nor humane, nor safe, nor healthy to allow people to live and ultimately, to deteriorate and die in these tent encampments," Wiener said. "We need to get people help." The solution, he said, is "to get people off the streets and into shelter," and into housing that addresses substance abuse and mental health issues.

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SF Supe Secures Remaining $2.5 Million for Getting to Zero

This article first appeared in the Bay Area Reporter on June 24th, 2016.
By Seth Hemmelgarn

Gay San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener told the Bay Area Reporter today (Friday, June 24) that he’s secured another $2.5 million for the city’s Getting to Zero initiative, which aims to eliminate new HIV infections in the city.

Advocates had asked Mayor Ed Lee for $3.1 million to support the initiative, but Lee had included only $600,000 in the budget he proposed in June. The city’s fiscal year starts July 1.

In a text message to the B.A.R. today, Wiener said, “I was able to obtain the entire $2.5 million for Getting to Zero. In combination with the mayor’s $600,000, we fully funded the entire $3.1 million budget package. … We worked closely with the GTZ consortium” and HIV/AIDS Provider Network to ensure the money’s there, he said.

“We had to fight hard keep it intact,” Wiener said. Supervisor Mark Farrell, chair of the board’s Budget and Finance Committee, “absolutely had the LGBT community’s back in helping us move this forward.”

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San Francisco Supervisor Holds Safety Meetings With Upcoming Gay Pride Festivities

This article first appeared on NBC Bay Area and can be found here.
By Ankita Bhanot

In the wake of the mass shooting that shook Orlando on Sunday, a San Francisco supervisor is taking steps to ensure that the LGBT community in the Bay Area won’t suffer the same tragic fate, especially as the June Pride Parade is two weeks away.

Supervisor Scott Wiener announced on Monday he will bring together members of the “LGBT nightlife community” and the San Francisco Police Department later this week to discuss preparations for the upcoming San Francisco pride celebration, which last year drew one million people. The Gay Pride weekend kicks off June 25. And there are no plans to cancel it, police and politicians said.

"This is an important conversation to have now so that everyone attending Pride can focus on the joyful reasons we are all together, and not be fearful of those threatened by our way of life, ” Wiener said in a statement.

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Contractor Bid Reform

The Board of Supervisors recently passed legislation that I authored that allows for additional criteria beyond bid price to be taken into account when awarding public contracts. It is essential that we get the best value for our taxpayers, and not just award public projects to whoever offers the lowest bid. City departments will now be allowed to include factors such as the safety record, past performance, labor compliance, management competence, financial condition, and relevant experience. You can read coverage of the legislation on SFBay here.


Counting Our LGBT Population

I recently proposed that San Francisco should begin to collect data to determine the size of the LGBT population living in the city. My proposal was singled out by Time in an article that looked at the benefits of conducting this research on a nationwide level. You can read the full article here.


S.F. Supervisor Looks to Shield HIV Survivors from Rent Spikes

I recently introduced legislation to extend rent control protections to people who receive the HOPWA (Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS) rental assistance voucher. It is unacceptable that the current system allows for people living with HIV on fixed incomes to be excluded from rent control. It is my hope to quickly pass this legislation and provide residents who receive HOPWA the same protections as any other person in a rent controlled unit.

You can read the SFGate’s coverage of the story here.


The Bay Area Reporter Endorses Scott Wiener

This editorial first appeared on The Bay Area Reporter on May 12, 2016

San Francisco voters, along with those in some northern San Mateo County cities, have an opportunity to send a qualified gay man to Sacramento in Scott Wiener, who's seeking to replace a fellow gay man, Mark Leno, in the District 11 state Senate seat. We endorse Wiener in this race, as he's the one candidate who's able to hit the ground running on numerous state and regional issues. During his time on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, Wiener has been one of the hardest working members, taking on issues other supervisors don't want to handle or forging his own legislative agenda, with an emphasis on housing and transportation, both of which are critical to San Francisco's – and the Bay Area's – future success.

If elected, Wiener promises to bring that same tenacity to the Capitol.

It's important to know that once Wiener sets his mind on something, he pushes until he succeeds, or often tries again if he doesn't. When his ballot measure for a tax on sugary beverages fell short of the two-thirds vote it needed to pass in 2014, Wiener and Supervisors Malia Cohen and Eric Mar came back with another approach: an ordinance requiring health warnings on posted soda ads in San Francisco. It passed but is being challenged in court. When a bunch of nudists took over Jane Warner Plaza a few years back, Wiener first tried legislation that required a towel to be placed on the seats nudists used. When that didn't work, he passed legislation to ban public nudity in the city, with the exceptions of some street fairs and festivals, like the San Francisco LGBT Pride parade.

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Chronicle recommends: Scott Wiener for Senate

This article first appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle on May 5, 2016

Scott Wiener is a hard worker and problem solver.

Despite a reputation for lockstep liberalism, San Francisco lawmakers have clear differences. A prime example is the state Senate race between workhorse wonk Scott Wiener, a standard bearer for moderates, and progressive deal maker Jane Kim, who’s forced changes on major housing deals.

Wiener is a studied, low-key supervisor who has probably produced more legislation than any of his peers. His work on transit, health care and city finances gives him the wide, non-splashy experience that will serve San Francisco’s many needs in Sacramento.

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