The president of the commission trying to revoke the accreditation of City College of San Francisco returned to the witness stand Wednesday and said the college was not denied time to defend itself and that she did not direct others to edit out favorable language about the college from a report.
The testimony of Barbara Beno, president of the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, appeared to reverse earlier damaging statements she had made under questioning from San Francisco Deputy City Attorney Ronald Flynn.
Under questioning a day earlier, Beno revealed that a team that evaluated City College had reported to the commission that the college complied with two particular accrediting standards.
When the commission voted to revoke City College’s accreditation, it concluded that the college had failed to meet the same two standards.
Serrano also said that even though her team had recommended probation rather than the harsher penalty imposed on the college — which gave it less than a year to comply with all standards or lose accreditation — she understood that it was the commission’s right to decide.
Yet her feelings about the harsher penalty became clear under cross-examination from Deputy City Attorney Matt Goldberg, who noted that Serrano later urged the commission to give the college more time to comply.
Posted: October 30, 2014, 5:21 pm
[...] it’s bringing the Castro wide sidewalks with golden plaques honoring lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender heroes and black slabs marking the street’s history.
The $8.3 million project also includes slick new gray steel streetlights, benches and bike racks; new street trees; and four rainbow-colored crosswalks at Castro and 18th streets.
The extra-wide traffic lanes were narrowed, but no parking spaces were lost, said Rachel Gordon, a spokeswoman for city Department of Public Works.
Marge Asten, owner of Cliff’s Variety, one of the neighborhood’s largest and oldest businesses, said the work choked sidewalks, eliminated parking, hampered deliveries and scared away customers for months.
Victor Morales, whose family owns the Castro Smokehouse, a smoke shop and newsstand, is pleased with the way the project looks and hopes it will attract more tourists, and locals — who stayed away during construction — to the Castro.
Even after Thursday’s opening event — a block party and ribbon cutting that will close Castro between 19th and Market streets from 6 to 8 p.m. — some finishing touches will still need to be applied.
Posted: October 30, 2014, 4:44 pm
[...] Oakland police have said that investigators have been unable to determine “whether or not cell phones were in use at the time of collision” by either Quan or Lovely, a nurses’ assistant in San Francisco.
In a suit filed in Alameda County Superior Court, Lovely said the mayor failed to “stop or even slow down for a red light at a heavily trafficked intersection all the while using a cell phone in violation of California law.”
The complaint added that on a previous occasion, Quan had been seen using a cell phone while driving “and admitted to the public that using a cell phone is dangerous to others.”
Lovely said Quan placed her and a 14-year-old with her in the Nissan “at a high risk of injury or death” and that Quan’s “actions show a conscious disregard of the rights and safety of others and is contemptible, vile and despicable.”
Posted: October 30, 2014, 3:42 pm
An exultant San Francisco Giants President Larry Baer thanked fans early Thursday and marveled at his team’s third World Series win in five seasons, saying the ballclub never gave up — while adding, “We’re not done.”
Fresh off a plane from Kansas City, Baer was met with cheers from fans as buses arrived with the players at AT&T Park.
With the World Series trophy in hand, Baer told reporters, “We didn’t need an airplane to fly us home, that’s for sure.”
Everybody on board was “just giddy” and was “sort of in an altered state of happiness and euphoria,” he said.
Baer said the three championships were “equally wonderful, but doing it a third time, people think that there’s a special thing going on in this clubhouse, and I think there is, and a lot of these guys now will have multiple championships.”
Posted: October 30, 2014, 3:39 pm
The most raucus area was Third and King streets, where thousands of fans sprayed Champagne and beer on one another, smashed bottles, lit fires and set off fireworks, prompting police in riot gear to move in and set up a perimeter. The crowd, which included several small children riding on a parent’s shoulders, huddled close as several people swung burning shirts over their heads, waved Giants flags above the fire and chanted obscenities. Shortly after 11 p.m., riot police lined up three rows deep, prompting drunken rowdies to begin hurling bottles, some shattering on the street and others hitting cringing officers. The heart of Market Street quickly filled with blaring sirens as police officers and firefighters dashed around tamping down fires and breaking up boozy brawls. Exuberant revelers shut down the intersection of 24th and Mission streets a half hour after the game, chanting “Let’s go Giants” and “MadBum, MadBum, MadBum!” Police quickly flanked the frenzied fun-lovers, but their presence had little effect on the joyous party. Champagne bottles popped, fireworks went off and a small trash fire briefly ignited, said Police Officer Gordon Shyy, a department spokesman.
Posted: October 30, 2014, 7:37 am
The Oakland experiment intended to test whether the red worms could compost food waste into fertile soil in zero gravity, allowing plants to grow, and creating oxygen and food for astronauts.
“Growing plants in fertile soil could give out food and oxygen to everyone on the (space station) and future space travelers,” the students wrote in their description of the experiment.
“The students — and staff — were incredibly disheartened to think that all their hard work had gone up in smoke, but they were relieved to discover that no one was injured and that their experiments would get a second chance to be launched into space,” said Oakland Unified School District Communications Director Troy Flint.
“The silver lining of the whole development is that scrutiny of the explosion has shined a light on the innovative teaching and learning that occurs on a regular basis at Urban Promise Academy,” he said.
Posted: October 30, 2014, 12:43 am
In August, a state appeals court said the prosecutor should instead inspect the files before seeking review from the trial judge.
Because the district attorney and the police are “a single prosecution team,” prosecutors can examine the records without violating confidentiality, the First District Court of Appeal said in a 3-0 ruling.
“The court needs to provide a consistent rule for counties to follow,” Adachi said.
Because police departments may seek to protect officers by hiding evidence, he said, prosecutors should be allowed to examine the files — but in either case, the court should make sure that “prosecutors and police are going to be held accountable” if they withhold evidence.
Posted: October 30, 2014, 12:12 am
[...] the suit alleges, not only does neither brother live there, but they’ve sublet the apartment more than once without Chavez’s permission.
According to the suit, Dwight earned a BA from Stanford in 2006 and a master’s from Yale in 2013.
George graduated from UCLA in 2008, earned a law degree at Hastings College and worked for the San Francisco district attorney’s office.
“Dwight and George are highly educated, white collar professionals,” Erhardt wrote in the filing, with post-graduate degrees from prestigious institutions.
[...] why are they going to such lengths to hold on to a rent-controlled apartment?
Because it is just too good to pass up.
“It is actually more common than people think,” says Brook Turner, executive director of the Coalition for Better Housing, which was formed in 1979 to fight rent control.
[...] if the tenant has subleased the unit without the landlord’s approval, the landlord can raise the rent to market rate under the state Costa Hawkins Rental Housing Act.
Sara Shortt, executive director of the San Francisco Housing Rights Committee, is no friend to landlords, but she worries that the Airbnb law just signed by the mayor leaves things wide open for abuse.
Nobody’s watching to see if it is more than 90 days.
Because this is a new way to make money off a rental property, people are taking advantage.
[...] if a landlord tries, there’s almost certainly going to be a lawsuit, because — as we know — landlords are vicious, greedy people.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 11:57 pm
Safety and systems tests have been completed and await certification by the California Public Utilities Commission, and the contractor is in the midst of a 30-day reliability test to make sure the driverless, cable-powered trains can operate as scheduled for the 20-plus hours a day the BART system operates.
The days surrounding Thanksgiving are typically the busiest travel period of the year, and BART is eager to start operating in time to capture the holiday crowds.
Riders can expect an 8½-minute ride on three-car trains that display the familiar logo and colors but don’t look much like a typical silver BART train.
Travelers heading to the airport on BART will get off their train at the Coliseum Station, walk to the south end of the platform and use escalators, stairs or elevators to get to a short ramp that leads to a bank of fare gates and a glass-walled waiting area.
The trains will automatically switch to a different cable that will pull them along a track that goes under Doolittle Drive, along the Metropolitan Golf Links then above the airport parking lots to an elevated station outside Terminal 1.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 11:44 pm
Suisun City police officers shot and killed a man who threatened them with a gun at his home, agency officials said Wednesday.
The shooting is under investigation by police and the Solano County district attorney’s office.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 11:35 pm
A man was struck and killed by a car in Suisun City, police said Wednesday.
Mahesh Goswami, 55, of Suisun City was walking near the corner of Walters Road and Pintail Drive when he was hit by a car about 6:40 p.m. Tuesday, said police Cmdr. Tim Mattos.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 11:27 pm
A week after a woman was slammed on social media for painting rocks in Yosemite and other national parks and then posting photos of her actions on Instagram, federal officials confirmed Wednesday that the woman — Casey Nocket of Highland, N.Y. — is suspected of committing vandalism at eight sites across five states.
Social media reacted with widespread disdain, especially to comments Nocket appeared to make about her rock paintings being “art” and not graffiti.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 11:23 pm
A 24-year-old man was arrested for stabbing and killing an acquaintance in Redwood City on Tuesday night during a fight, police said.
Jake Monahan stabbed the victim to death with a knife at Courthouse Square on the 2200 block of Broadway about 8:25 p.m., said Redwood City police Lt. Sean Hart.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 10:55 pm
Wells Fargo Bank must repay $203 million to debit card customers in California for deceiving them about overdraft fees, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday.
U.S. District Judge William Alsup of San Francisco ruled that Wells Fargo had deceived customers with ads and website statements that suggested the transactions would be entered in the order they were received.
The bank argued that there was no evidence that all of its customers would have handled their accounts differently had they known of the overdraft policy, but the court said California law allows customers to recover any funds the bank may have obtained through false or misleading statements.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 10:53 pm
A former San Mateo County social worker was arrested on suspicion of having sex with a 16-year-old girl under his care, authorities said Wednesday.
Manuel Sedillo, 38, of Santa Clara, was taken into custody Tuesday and booked at San Mateo County Jail on suspicion of unlawful sex with a person under 18, oral copulation with a person under 18, sexual penetration with a person under 18 and dissemination of sexual imagery to a person under 18.
Posted: October 29, 2014, 10:44 pm