Legal effort to strike parking initiative fails

A legal motion to remove a controversial parking initiative off the November ballot was rejected Thursday by a San Francisco Superior Court judge.

Public transit advocate Tom Radulovich, a BART board director, sued to remove Measure H — an initiative that would increase the number of parking spaces allowed per residential unit built in The City.

The lawsuit argued that a factual error on the petition that qualified the measure for the ballot invalidated every signature collected. The petition summary, prepared by the City Attorney’s Office, understated the amount of parking permitted in certain downtown zoning districts — stating that up to one space for every three units was permitted, when in downtown residential districts up to one car for each unit is permitted.

“The voters are deciding on something that reached the ballot on false pretenses,” said Michael Sweet, the lawyer handling the lawsuit.

On Thursday, the City Attorney’s Office acknowledged the error.

“Our position is that the error was immaterial,” City Attorney spokesperson Matt Dorsey said. “At the same time, we acknowledge that it is an important principle for voters to have a right to accurate information.”

Superior Court Judge Peter Busche denied the request, noting that the ballot language itself would not contain the error.

The hearing was the latest scuffle in an ongoing battle over the parking measure, which has pitted downtown business interests and public-transit supporters.

Earlier this month, Supervisor Aaron Peskin — who put a Muni charter amendment on the November ballot that includes a provision that would negate the parking measure — agreed to a compromise measure that will follow on the February 2008 ballot. In return, Measure H backers agreed to not campaign for the pro-parking initiative.

Peskin’s compromise allows for at least one parking space for each housing unit constructed in the western part of The City; it also allows developers to build parking garages in the South of Market area, west of Sixth Street.

beslinger@examiner.com

Bay Area NewsLocalTransittransportation

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott listens at a rally to commemorate the life of George Floyd and others killed by police outside City Hall on Monday, June 1, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Will the Biden Administration help SF speed up police reform?

City has struggled to implement changes without federal oversight

Lowell High School (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Students, families call for culture shift at Lowell after racist incident

District to explore changes including possible revision of admissions policy

Alan Wong was among California National Guard members deployed to Sacramento to provide security the weekend before the presidential inauguration. (Courtesy photo)
CCSF board member tests positive for COVID-19 after National Guard deployment

Alan Wong spent eight days in Sacramento protecting State Capitol before Inauguration Day

Due to a lack of votes in his favor, record-holding former Giant Barry Bonds (pictured at tribute to Willie McCovey in 2018) will not be entering the National Baseball Hall of Fame in the near future.<ins> (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
Ex-Giants star Barry Bonds again falls short of Hall of Fame

After striking out yet again in his bid to join Major League… Continue reading

San Francisco firefighter Keith Baraka has filed suit against The City alleging discrimination on the basis of race and sexual orientation.<ins></ins>
Gay black firefighter sues city for discrimination

A San Francisco firefighter who says he was harassed and discriminated against… Continue reading

Most Read