S.F. General Hospital bond could flatline

A bond measure aiming to raise approximately $800 million to rebuild San Francisco’s public hospital is slated for the November ballot, along with other ballot measures, which Mayor Gavin Newsom said could put the project “in peril.”

California law requires a number of seismically vulnerable hospitals, including San Francisco General Hospital, to construct new buildings for acute-care patients that can better withstand earthquakes. Hospitals that don’t meet the requirement by early 2015 could be stripped of their intensive care licenses.

A hospital bond measure is expected to raise around $800 million, according to health department spokeswoman Eileen Shields.

For years, various city leaders have discussed putting a funding measure before voters to raise the needed funds for the hospital rebuild; during his re-election victory speech in November, Newsom said that passing such a bond would be one of his top priorities.

Passing the bond, which will need a two-thirds majority, will “require overwhelming political support,” Newsom said on Wednesday, because of the high dollar amount and because other measures are expected on the same ballot.

“I’m concerned about it,” Newsom said. “If you load up the ballot with other big tasks I think we could put it in peril.”

Also on the November ballot is a charter amendment sponsored by Supervisor Chris Daly that would see yearly city spending on below-market-rate housing increased to more than $100 million.

Local political analyst David Latterman said he expects November’s ballot to be packed with at least 10 or 12 initiatives, which he said will make it more difficult to get voter approval for each.

Nonetheless, Latterman said the hospital measure “won’t be a gimme,” but expects it to pass.

“People intrinsically understand that you’ve got to have a working general hospital,” he said. “In my gut, I think this thing has to pass.”

Wednesday night, The City held a public meeting that was attended by about 50 people to discuss the plans for rebuilding San Francisco General Hospital. Unveiled was a design for a circular, nine-level building.

The curved design will help nurses monitor patients from centrally located hubs, said project architect Paolo Diaz before the meeting, and the new building will be connected to the existing building through three tunnels and walkways.

If the bond is approved, construction on the new hospital is expected to start in July 2009 and be completed by mid 2014.

jupton@examiner.com

Bay Area NewsLocal

Just Posted

Plan Bay Area 2050 is an expansive plan guiding the region’s growth and development over the next three decades. The regional plan addresses progressive policy priorities like a universal basic income and a region-wide rent cap, alongside massive new spending on affordable housing and transportation infrastructure. (Shutterstock)
$1.4 trillion ‘blueprint’ would address Bay Area’s housing, transit woes

Analyzing the big ticket proposals in ‘Plan Bay Area 2050’

A felled tree in San Francisco is pictured on Fillmore Street following a major storm that produced high winds and heavy rains on Oct. 24, 2021. (Photo courtesy of Philip Ford)
Storm updates: Sunday was wettest October day in San Francisco history

Torrential rainfall causes flooding, triggers evacuations in burn areas

On Sunday, California bore the brunt of what meteorologists referred to as a bomb cyclone and an atmospheric river, a convergence of storms that brought more than half a foot of rain to parts of the Bay Area, along with high winds, concerns about flash floods and the potential for heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada. Much of the Bay Area was under a flash flood watch on Sunday, with the National Weather Service warning of the potential for mudslides across the region. (NOAA via The New York Times)
Bomb cyclone, atmospheric river combine to pummel California with rain and wind

What you need to know about this historic weather event

While Kaiser Permanente patients seeking mental health care will get a 30-minute phone assessment within days, in many cases, they cannot get actual treatment for months. (Shutterstock)
City employees face months-long wait time for mental health care

‘We are in the midst of a mental health crisis’

Klay Thompson, left, and his boat dealer Kenyon Martin take on his test drive on the NBA star’s 37-foot vessel; injury woes sent Thompson, the Golden State guard, looking for solace. He found it on the water. (Courtesy Anthony Nuccio via New York Times)
Warriors star finds love with his fishing boat

Being on the water is a ‘safe space’ for Klay Thompson

Most Read