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tv   Government Access Programming  SFGTV  March 18, 2019 10:00am-11:01am PDT

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meeting will come to order. welcome to the march 18, 2019, rules committee. seated to my right is shamann walton, and seated to my left is rules committee supervisor gordon mar. and we're joined by president norman yee. and i would like to thank
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those from s.f. gov. tv for staffing this meeting. >> please silence you cell phones and all electronic equipment. documents should be included as part of the record and submitted to the clerk. >> chairwoman: thank you so much. can you please read item number one. >> would you like me to call one and two together? >> chairwoman: sure. >> item one is a motion amending the rules of order for striking rule 3.29 to remove the budget and finance committee on federal policy changes. and item two is the board of supervisors clarifying amendments to rule 3.26 rules committee and rule 3.30, select committees, and by adding rule 3.31 to establish a joint city school district and city
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college select committee. >> chairwoman: thank you. president yee, did you want to discuss or present these items? >> sure. thank you. i will just make it real brief. as the title implies, it is really to clean up some of the language that we have in regards to what goes to what committee. and then mainly what i wanted to do is talk about the joint city school district and city college select committee. we've had select committees before with the school district. and probably had it for many years. and eventually for the last few years we discontinued it because there was not an interest at the time. and there has been a lot more interest since i've become the president, expressed by not only my own colleagues, but also by the school district and
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city college. so what's a little bit new is this joint committee actually includes three governance. the city and the school district and the city college. so i've already spoken to the school district and city college. college, their commissioning trustees, and they all agreed they wanted to do this. the idea is we'll have regular meetings scheduled, and that there be to representatives from each of the entities to make up six members. and in addition to that, we have built in an alternative -- alternate -- for each of the entities because in the past there has been issues of getting a quorum if one person doesn't show up. and the purpose of this is to make sure that we have
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a way to communicate with the entities because, as you know, there is a lot of, i guess, interaction anyways that happens informally. and more recently, there has been exchange of funding for the city's funding certain things. so we want to make sure that there is some vehicle where we could formalize this. and the other piece is just to eliminate basically the federal -- the budget and finance select committee on federal policy changes that was created last year, i believe. and with the threat of the federal governments towards local government sort of disappearing. we felt like there was no need for this. okay. >> chairwoman: supervisor walton?
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>> yes, thank you, chair ronen. i just want to say i was disheartened by the dissolution of the joint committee when i was on the board of education, so i'm excited about reestablishing the joint committee there. there are so many things between the city, the school district, and city college that overlap, particularly in a time when affordability is major, and we're trying to figure out ways, of course, to create more affordable housing, as well as our fights with homelessness and transportation. so so many overlaps, so i want to thank president yee for bringing this back because we need to be working closely with city college and with the school district. so thank you so much. >> chairwoman: thank yo you. viewpoinsupervisor mar? >> yes. i want to also thank president yee for the proposal to create the joint board of supervisors school district and city
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college collec select committee. it is something members of the board are enthusiastic about. now is a great time to do that this year. i wanted to highlight one of the priorities i've been working on in my district very much connects to this. i've been working with city college administration and also the school district to expand city college dual enrollment classes in the sunset district for high school students. so we're working on a plan to really expand that this summer, and continue to expand this fall into next spring. that is just an example of the kind of exciting, important work that can happen through this -- within the framework of this joint select committee. so thank you so much. >> i just wanted to add my thanks, president yee, for being so responsive to us on the board. you know, all three of us,
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supervisor mar and walton and i are all parents of students in the school district. so shi this is extra relevant and present for us every day. but there just seems to be so many issues -- and also free city college -- where there real is the need for this joint cross-dialogue on the board. thank you so much. we're all very excited about this and really appreciate you. now i will open up this item for public comment. if there is any member of the public who would like to speak on this item, now is your chance. oh, are you going -- okay. seeing none, public comment is closed. [gavel] >> chairwoman: can i have a motion? >> i move that we move this forward to the full board with recommendation. >> chairwoman: without
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reobjection, items one and two move forward with recommendation to the full board. can you please read item number three. >> item number three is an ordinance, many of the administrative codes required department heads and members of city boards commission to complete complicit training, and to apply newly appointed department heads to have training within 60 days of assuming office, and to require the department of human resources to provide the training. >> chairwoman: thank you. we have a representative from supervisor stefani's office. >> thank you for welcoming me back. i'm here to present just a minutes to the initial legislation on our conversation to make it more robust, particularly for department heads. on page two, starting on line 15, this is the main amendment that our offices worked with the city attorney and d.h. r. on.
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it requires department heads to have an in-person training, which will be fulfilled with an all-day training within the first 60 days of them entering their office. and commissioners remain taking an online training. and just to match this so that h.r. can implement it, there are some state adjustments. throughout you'll see that the requirement of june 30th has been changed to december 31st, 2019. i've also got susan guard her with d.h.r., if there are any questions. >> chairwoman: great. any questions? no. thank you so much for being responsive to us. this looks great. i would love to be added as a co-sponsor, please. >> thank you very much, supervisor stefani. i appreciate your support and co-sponsorship. >> chairwoman: any member of the public like to speak on this item? seeing none, public comment is closed.
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[gavel] >> chairwoman: is there a motion? >> i move that we move this forward with a positive recommendation. >> chairwoman: without objection -- >> you need to adopt the amendment. >> i move that we adopt the amendment to the proposed legislation. >> chairwoman: without objection, that item is amended. >> and now move that we move with a positive recommendation, with the amendment, to the full board. >> chairwoman: without objection, that motion passes. [gavel] >> chairwoman: thank you. thank you. can you please read item number four. >> it is a hearing to consider one member term ending 2020 to the advisory committee. one seat, one applicant. >> chairwoman: thank you. is melissa mendoza here? >> i believe we did receive notice that she was out of town. however, this is a nomination from a member of the board of supervisors. >> chairwoman: great. so we will now open up
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this item -- i'm sorry, supervisor walton? or was that left over. sorry. we will now open up this item for public comment. >> it is my fault. i just wanted to say that i'm very excited about her participation. everything she does, that she is part of, she is a part of a va very innovative group and active group. i definitely think you should reconfirm her. >> chairwoman: any member of the public like to speak? seeing none, the public comment is closed. would anybody like to make a motion. >> sure. i move that we recommend melissa mendoza to seat five of the advisory committee, on to the full board. >> chairwoman: without objection, that motion passes. thank you, please read item number five. >> number five is a hearing to appoint one member ending february 1st, 2021, to
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the park space, open space advisory committee, one seat, one applicant. >> chairwoman: thank you. is rosa chen here? good morning, ms. chen. >> good morning, supervisor. my name is rosa chen. i was born and raised in chinatown in district 3. i've used the parks in district 3, and i'm part of the community for better park and rec in chinatown. while i was serving in the youth commission is few years back, i also worked on park issues in the district as wellmen well. so i think i have a lot of experience working with youth. i used to be an organizer for youth. and i worked on park issues, open space issues, really making sure it is being advocated for the community. >> chairwoman: thank you so much. any questions? no. thank you so much. thank you for being willing to serve in this capacity. it is important. so thanks so much. is there any other member of the public who would like to speak on this item? seeing none, public comment is closed.
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>> i move the motion forward. >> chairwoman: without objection, that motion passes. item six? >> item six is approving/rejecting the mayor's appointment of scott to the retirement board for a year term ending february 20th, 2023. >> chairwoman: would you like to present the board on your qualifications and interests in this position? >> thank you. thank you for inviting me over for deliberations. i actually tried to see -- i spoke to you last week. i dropped by your office -- both of your offices, supervisors, on friday to see if you had any questions. i'll go with what -- how you want to ask questions. maybe i'll tell you two minutes on the back of my baseball card, specifically, personally i have six kids, 12
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grandkids, citizens of san francisco, all committed to making san francisco a better city. so in my business, i've had a number of activities that give me a unique perspective on the issues at hand that the retirement board is addressing. specifically the esg platform and the like. my personal investing is also in that light. i will tell you on a personal basis, my money managers and like handle e.s.g. regularly, and it goes into the decision-making of my personal life. i do not have any fossel companies in my investment portfolio, nor do i plan to. we are working on several
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non-profits, actually, that i am involved with that are eliminating that fossel. on that regard, i think should probably go to the -- as the city -- what i've done in the city. and for about 18, 19 years i've been a commissioner. i was a commissioner on the health service system for about 15 years. and in all of my activities with the city, it is to -- it is with distinct purpose of putting san francisco as a thought waiter, but noanl only a thought waiter, but a thought enactor. if we're going to talk the talk, we need to walk the
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walk. when i was first president, we were broke. and in four years, we had that back on to track. and then thereafter, san francisco became a real thought waiter and thought enactor, and affordable care came into place, we were cutting-edge, and we had affordable care, and we had something that was solid in the middle for 125,000 employees, retirees, dependents of the city of san francisco. a fact that i'm really pleased we accomplished. i resigned from the public health service, it is well-known, because i saw an advantage and for the good of the finances that we introduced an actuary that took an r.f.p. it was associated with one of the companies i'm employed by. i was told by the city attorney it is not a conflict, but when i put my head on the pillow at
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night and i think it is a conflict -- so i went to the mayor and i resigned. i thought i had a three-month vacation, but i got a call and went on civil service. we have a dedicated group of civil servants. a thought waiter, a thought enactor, and i thought with the identification issues, that's where we're going once again. i was honored to get a call from the mayor, as her appointment on the retirement board. and the same fe fiduciary responsibility. there are 125,000 employee retirees and dependents. recognizing that
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responsibility on basis of the issues at hand that have been a little delayed incoming to a resolution or a commitment to do something. defosselization is one example, and e.s.g. going forward, i'm glad to see it is a position where it is, pront and center, and i look forward to pushing those forward on a very thoughtful basis. again, thought leadership and enactor. climate change is a big issue. and i'm also council general to the republic of rwanda, and i have been for many years. i started the san francisco sisters city committee for mayor newso newsom. no more other places than in banghor, with water, and with climate change, that you can see the actual results of this. i bring these up because it a filter.
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it is something i translate through. it is a filter that i feel very comfortable with, that meshes with what the retirement board needs to do. at that, i'd be glad to answer any questions. >> chairwoman: one question: you had mentioned that you stepped off the health services board because, you know, whether or not it was a legal conflict, you saw a perceived conflict between your company and huet and some work that the health services system was doing. is there any conflict that you can imagine between the retirement board and huet, or that you can see up coming. and do hue huet have any business with the city that could present a similar situation? >> no. i've done my due diligence on this when the mayor asked me.
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the last thing i need is to be accused of a conflict of interest. especially after doing so much over the years. no, the direct answer. my business -- the business i'm in now and all of the associated businesses i'm involved with have nothing to do with the retirement board, period. we have a retirement division and whatever that does some cultureing and consuln aon, which is my primary business, but i've checked with our compliance people. and i don't see any other -- and i don't see any issue with what i've said going through with all of my money managers and people that handle my finances. >> chairwoman: okay. thank you. as you know, and you mentioned this a little bit, the board of supervisors voted unanimously to urge the retirement board to divest
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from fossel fuels in 2013, and then again in 2018. over the last five years the energy sector has been by far the worst performing sector of the market. will you commit to making a motion to divest san francisco retirement system from fossel fuels? >> answer: yes. my thought is -- i happen to believe in this deeply, and i was really heartened to see that the norwegian sovereign fund, the number one product of norway, oil. the norwegian sovereign fund just last week ordered a divestiture of fossel fuels. it is interesting. >> chairwoman: thank you. we are joined by supervisor safai. did you have some questions? >> yes. i just wanted to make a
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statement and ask a question or two. thank you, madam chair. i am the representative of the board on the retirement board for our body. i had the pleasure of sitting down with mr. helfun and talking to him -- >> in your district. >> in my district, right. i wanted to say a few things for the record that we talked about, and i think it is important that it be noted that our retirement fund has grown over the last number of years. many city employees are here, including ourselves. our number one responsibility is to grow that fund so we are fully funded for those that retire. we have that feduciary responsibility. we are 90% funded for all of our retir retirees. so we're doing exceedingly well. one of the things that has
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frustrated me, and i see some of the advocates here for fossel fuel, we had the conversations, passed the resolutions, and then the response has been, if we don't invest, other funds will. i like the example of the norwegian fund. but what are some of the concrete steps that we can take when staff say, if we don't, others will invest in that fund? >> i guess the thing that allowed me to say yes, that i'd consider this, is the progress that we've made in e.s.g., because out of that platform, basically, you have an investment strategy -- a roadmap, i should say, to to -- to the deep fosselization issue. it has been delayed. it has been an issue. it has come this full
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circle to appoint, where now there is a common -- seemingly common direction and push to accomplish this. so there is one good news, and it took time. there is a lot of strategy out there. a lot has developed during the time when we didn't act. so we can borrow from that on an e.s.g. platform, the environmental, the social, and the governance, and find, with the directive, that we have a proprietary responsibility. short answer: i don't think it happens overnight, but it should be a very big step forward to accomplish it. >> and just as a followup to that, we have passed these resolutions as recently as the last few months, but yet the
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leadership of the environment fund continue to bring us investments that involve fossel fuel. so recently in the last two months, i was one of the only retirement board individuals to vote against a more recent proposal. so it is frustrating. we pass these resolutions. we believe in this. there are multiple opportunities to invest all over the world. we're not wanting for investment opportunities, and yet they still bring us these investments. >> the e.s.g g. platform has that built into it, that you have the center, the "s," and that the management of the managers -- and if they're not bringing what we're asking for, what the majority of people are asking for, there are a lot of other managers. >> and there is also another issue that is
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vexing to us. we had individuals fro from -- former individuals from toytoys "r" us, and a lot of retailers that reorganize under chapter 11, and once they buy the debt it is almost like a never-ending cycle, and they pay dividends. it is hard, so we have the responsibility, we have to make money, but at the same time, we're putting businesses out of business from some of the investment that we make because of this pure -- how do we thanl handle that? >> by reviewing what is brought in front of us, on a deeper dive, and make sure that the managers, and look at the governance
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part of the "g," which is basically what we're talking about. and also put it against the template of what is really happening in the economy today. and that's an important thing. you can't say in a perfect world. it is in a perfect world. i'll go into a segue, forget the hedge funds and the private equity guys. let's look at what they're doing on the other side with california wildfires. they're buying the claims. they're buying the debt. it is an interesting situation. and so referring back to your answer, it would be a deeper dive into what we're looking at against the template of commitment that we're going to do for a governance. >> i think all of these things are really important to my colleagues and to our board. we represent a lot of these workers who are working for these companies, but on the other hand, we're
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representing the retirees at the same time. we have to balance those to competing interests. the last thing i wanted to say for the record, and we did not get to talk about this, was a strong desire to expand the opportunities for working people to be able to afford to live in san francisco. in the past, we were, and still may be, the seventh largest investor in the afl/cio's housing investment fund. it is a smaller aspect of our portfolio, similar to our fixe fixed assets, where it might not get as much of a return as other areas, but it is important to invest in because it allows us to building housing for working people. one of my goals on the board in the upcoming two years is to expand that portfolio and look for opportunities to invest in housing for working people. will you join me on that? and what's your thoughts on expanding housing opportunities through our investment funds? >> absolutely. i mean, it is -- i'm
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looking at business models now that are using city-owned properties, common space, whatever, that are looking at that in the reality of what is happening in their communities, their states, the nation. and i've had a venture fund, and i still have some venture investments, and i've always said -- and this goes back a long time -- that there are great business models that do for the greater good, that create the greater good for the greatest amount of people, and always has been. the object is to filter that -- to put that -- for us -- i shouldn't say us -- for the retirement board, it is to put it against the fe fiduciary responsibility, as you mentioned. i've always said impact investing, social impact
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investing, profit -- we look at the investments that will make profit, will have a bo bottom line because that will feed scale, that impacts scale. it is not just a nice business, sounds good and makes everybody feel good -- that's not it. >> thank you. i just wanted to say i enjoyed the opportunity to sit with you. i appreciate your answers and i feel comfortable moving forward and supporting you as a member on this body. i just wanted to put that in for the record. thank you, madam chair. >> chairwoman: sure. supervisor walton? >> just one question. i know we're 90% funded, and what's the average -- in your mind and thoughts, what's the possibility of getting to 100%? >> it's -- i'm going to give you a global answer because i really need to do a deeper dive to really answer that spot-on.
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i feel comfortable about accepting the nomination because i think we can reach it in a reasonable amount of time, but we have to make some changes, structural changes to it. i'm committed to doing it, to fully funding it. but i have to tell you, i can't answer that question in actual -- >> just for the record, madam chair, relative to other investment funds and public funds, we're doing exceedingly well. so at one point we were far less than 90%. we were down in the 80s. anyway, just for the record. >> sometimes it is good to see a case in point. in the actuaries, for the
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city and county service -- which is part of the reason i resigned. because we were able to actuarially take over a billion dollars out of the gaspesgaspi. a billion dollars using norm actuaryial fundss. that would be increasing the plan. >> chairwoman: one last question before we open this up to public comment, and you and i talked about this is little when we met. the person who healed the seat before you, wendy paskin jordan, had focused a lot on the government issues with e.s.g., and
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fighting to ensure not only on the retirement board or with our city staff, but reflected in the companies where we're making investment, where there are women and people of color represented on management and the boards of those companies. that is something that is really important to me. i think there is a movement nationally for that. i'm just wondering your thoughts on that and what type of work or ideas that you would have in terms of meeting the "g" part of the e.s.g. goals? >> we did talk about that. i guess once again, i'll fall back on actions speak louder than words. for the 18 years in rwanda, and from the top to the bottom of the government in rwanda, which is a democratic model for central africa, if not all of su sub-sahara
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africa. last year sweden used to be the largest country in the world that had the most female representatio representation. no longer. rwanda is. rwanda has more females in their government worldwide than any other. i've started three businesses, going back to 1968, that have had two "c"s, and i was the other "c" in the "c" suite. and we're committed to gender-equallitgender-equality e like. i think personally having been involved deep in that, on the "g" side -- and we can talk about the other parts of "g" as to how the governance is and
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how the pay is, and all of the issues that you read about. but in terms of what i've learned is it's an added -- if you go into the process and start a business or run a model and you have an open mind to the issue, you can make -- and a commitment, it's up to you to bring other people on that ship. and can be done. it's just really adjusting the tuning to the issues at hand. and that is an important part, definitely an important part. that one is coming really up to the surface more. so... >> chairwoman: any questions? >> supervisor mar? >> i don't have any additional questions or comments beyond what you guys have already raised.
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which i very much agree with the questions and points. and i look forward to hearing public comment on this. >> chairwoman: thank you. thank you so much. any member of the public will have two minutes to speak on this nomination. if you would like to line up, anybody who wants to speak on this side of the room, that would be great. the first person should feel free to come right up. good morning, mr. pollock. >> my name is jeremy pollock, and i'm member of fossel-free san francisco. we formed back in 2013 to work around pressuring the retirement board to divest from fossel fuels. i was working with the supervisor on that who sponsored the original resolution. i came to that movement a
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little skeptically because i feel like there is a risk of politicizing the retirement fund, and i think, you know, it was really researching the fiduciary case for divestment of fossel fuels is what really co convinced me that is just the right thing to do. the carbon bubble and the climate crisis -- these companies are based on stranded assets. and oil that cannot be extracted if we're going to have a livable planet here. if i can show on the overhead -- this is the five-year performance of the various sectors of the economy. you can see the s& s&p 500 up over 50%, and the energy is down over 50%. that's how that looks over the other five-year
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period. and so it's been rather frustrating the retirement board so basically they ignored this movement. and as a result cost us hundreds of millions of dollars -- tens of millions of dollars, if not hundreds of millions of dollars, in lost opportunity costs. it is very encouraging to hear mr. helfu helfun wanting to invest. we've seen the executive director of the retirement board and the executive staff not always coming together. that's all i can say. thank you. >> chairwoman: than thank you so much. as we're waiting for our next speaker, i just noticed that mayor jordan joined us. i wanted to recognize you and thank you for being in the room. >> thank you. >> chairwoman: thank you. >> thank you, chair ronen and supervisors.
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to finish mr. pollock's comments, i think what he was trying to say is we've seen actual motions made and approved by the retirement board that the executive staff have later said they chose not to implement. and i'm not sure -- that has happened with i impunity. i'm one of the members of the fossel-free s.f., and i want to thank you all for the hearing, and i want to thank supervisor safai for his comments and questions, and i'm really gratified to hear mr. helyou fun' helfun's supporr our city and county and actually walking the walk, and getting the fossels out, which is so important, and which the board of supervisors have supported repetitively. to the comment on staff foot-dragging, i would say in terms of what to answer
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to them, i see that argument really as a head fake. it is the same argument that was used to prevent the united states or california or san francisco taking any kind of climate action because, you know, china or texas or, you know, memphis weren't going to. obviously, that is not an argument that has been salient to our city and county in terms of moving forward and showing leadership in showing reducing ways, using our purchasing program even to push environmental goals. i heard somebody talking about trying to reduce colbolt in the items we're buying. i think that argument is really spesious, and i think the answer is this is leadership, being ahead of the curb. the best way to protect the beneficiaries of the retirement fund is to be ahead of the curve on fossel fuels.
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so support strong divestment. >> chairwoman: thank you. >> good morning, supervisors. my name is amar john thomas, and i'm the vice president for the chapter of i.s. p.t. local 21, and i'm the chair of our pension oversight committee. i'm here to represent local 21, which represents thousands of employees of the city of san francisco and those who rely on a pension for making a living after retirement. i would like to encourage the board to consider very carefully who they appoint to the retirement board. there are a number of factors that can be helpful for this. the first would be that the retirement board needs somebody who is absolutely free of any sort of industry conflicts of any sort. even the appearance of conflicts can lead to a lot of instability with the pension and trust that it is being run properly.
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but actually having conflicts can be detrimental to the performance in a substantial way. so this should be taken into account by the board of supervisors as they confirm an appointee to the requirement board. additionally, someone of strong world character is required. this is a very robust fund, as the supervisors have mentioned earlier today, and it is doing quite well. there are a lot of political needs facing the city at this time. it is very easy to sometimes take advantage of some of the funds to solve political funds. i'll speed up on some of these factors. one will be to work through the best interests of beneficiaries. the primary purpose of this is so folks can have a stable retirement when they retire. it is very important that person take that into account. and we want a diverse board, equally composed of
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men and women. it is very important. and the ability to serve for many years and maintain continuity in the relationship. please give the retirement board a chance. [bell] >> good morning, madam chair, and members of the committee. my name is larry griffin, and i'm the political legislative vice president for local 21. i wasn't going to speak today, but i felt i had t to. this fund has been doing very well. it is a r & a very robust fund, one of the best in the country. i'm now hearing talk about investing in real estate, and that really bothers me.
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that seems to come up every year or so, and it is non stakeholders who want to get into that fund and start making investments in housing and real estate. that is not what our fund is for. it is at its state now because we've never done that. the prior commissioner that held this seat, wendy peskin jordan, fought all attempts to try to get that money into housing, every time there was an attempted raid on it. the diversitiy of the board is another thing i'm concerned about. i think that, if i'm not mistaken, there is a new state law that requires that boards and commissions have to be made up 30% women. and i think that this appointment by the mayor is going to take that threshold way down below. so i would like the board to consider that when you make your decisions. okay. thank you. [bell]
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>> i just want to say something just for clarity. the investment fund, our pension fund, consistently invests in real estate, and has for decades. so what i was restating was an area of the fund that has been invested in consistently. and so just for clarity. thank you. >> good morning, madam chair and supervisors. i'm the current president of local 798, and also a resident here in san francisco. i'm not here to e endorse or to oppose any appointee, but just to remind the commissioners that our employees take very strong interest in our retirement system. and we want to make sure anyone you guys confirm, as before, has some
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definite experience, is of good, moral character, without no conflicts to the system, and will also work independently. and we do this and make sure that there it is in the best interests of our beneficiaries within the retirement system. and also to real estate, i understand that we do invest, but it has been a practice to try to not mingle city interests with our retirement system, to make sure that it is all of one steady and without conflict qualities. again, we're not here to endorse or to reject, but we ask that supervisors, if you move it to the full board that you do your due diligence, and you take a look at all aspects, and that we make sure that anyone you appoint would be in the definite interests of our retirees, and also of the beneficiary system. thank you. [bell] >> chairwoman: thank you.
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>> good morning. my name is sean connelly. i'm the president of the municipal attorneys' association here in san francisco. we represent 400 attorneys that work for the city, city attorneys, district attorney's, public defenders, real estate lawyers, sheriff's lawyers, public advocates, d.p.a. we're stakeholders in this. we give up a lot on the front end to enjoy a benefit on the back end. this is not a platform or fund. >> chairwoman: please continue. thank you. sorry. >> it is not a platform or fund for politics or slush fund for other political issues. i'm here to support ms. paskin. i don't know mr. helfun, but i know that this woman
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has subject matter and expertise. the fund has performed very well under her leadership and her presence on the committee. i remind this body that for us, we need someone that has a strict financial fiduciary obligation to that fund. in this day and age, too many people, politically backed, are playing games with this fund, and our public employee pensions are under attack all the time. thank you. >> good morning, madam chair and supervisors. i'm tracy mccray, and i'm a resident of the city. i've been employed by the city since i was 14 years old, from part-time capacity to now as a police officer. which in a few years i will be retired and will be drawing from the pension fund. and as other people stated before me, the
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responsibility to protect that for the workers of the city is very important. as mr. helfun said, rwanda is a pro-woman country. that's great. i would think we could get a qualified female applicant, as ms. paskin jordan has represented us, but someone with some financial background, reof conflicts, all of the above, who can do that. as 50% of the population in san francisco, we surely aren't represented that way. by the seven females in the room right now, i think you can see that. so just hopefully it is about the process. it is not a political field. i would like to be able to draw my pension for the 32 plus years i will have served the city. so thank you.
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>> i've david paige. i'm a city retiree and i'm also a retired s.c.i. u. local 1021. i wanted to address supervisor safai's question about what would be the point of divesting if someone else is going to buy exxon or chevron, whoever it might be. similar to what we heard earlier from mr. helfun about the norwegian fund, yes, if you divest in secret, maybe it won't make a big deal. but if you divest in public forum, more people will hear about it. you probably are familiar with the fact that billions have been divested already. so the more people that do it, the better it will be for our future. when i say, "our future,"
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i'm talking about the real lives of we'll people. my friends, jody and bill, listened in paradise until last summer. while they were running out of their house with their dog, they were driving away, and they watched people burn to death. you know, it's not a simple, random political decision that we're talking about here, let's replace one commissioner with another. let's replace one investment with another. there is someone in the room who ran out of his house two years ago in a similar situation. these wildfires, droughts, floods, famines, and coming because of people using fossel fuels. i don't want my pension, my money, to be coming from profits from these unfortunate companies that don't seem to understand how the weather works.
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and, one more thing,. [bell] >> chairwoman: thank you. >> good morning, supervisors, my name is larry barsetti, and i'm a secretary to the san francisco police officers association, and vice president to protect our benefits. the vast majority of the retirees in the city and county of san francisco are concerned with one thing, and that is, whoever administers our fund have strict fiduciary responsibility to maintain and to grow the fund to ensure its viability into the future. excuse me. i'm sure you're aware that if the fund is used for nice social political
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purposes and depleted, the city and county of san francisco has to make up the money itself. i have a contract with you. you can't break that contract. the u.s. federal and state constitutions say you can't. so therefore every dollar that you lose -- not you, but this fund loses because of inprudent political decisions -- i'm not saying this is one, but i'm reminding you, and reminding you, sir, that fiduciary responsibility is number one. if the money isn't there, the city and county of san francisco has to make it up. you know that. please remember that. that's what we're concerned about. i might live to be 95 years old. you have to pay me until i'm 95. i have a contract, and i want it. thank you. >> chairwoman: thank you. is there any other member of the public who would like to speak? seeing none, public comment is closed. i just wanted -- oh, sorry. i will reopen public
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comment. without objection -- hold on. public comment is reopened. >> my name is herbert winer, and i'm a city retiree. i can't stress too strongly the importance of the retirement fund. this is one of the best funds in the city -- in the country -- excuse me -- and we should take great pride in it. anyone who assumes a seat on that board has a grave responsibility to strengthen our benefits, to preserve our benefits. it is a very strong obligation. so whatever your decision is, it has great impact. so i'm a retiree. i worked for the city for 36 years as a social worker. i am a beneficiary of an excellent retirement system that never
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experienced orange county or san diego, where the city services were paralyzed as a result of malfeasance. this is an excellent fund that requires responsible administration. and you have the responsibility of your appointment to guarantee this. thank you. >> chairwoman: thank you so much. so i'm going to call it out one more time. this is the last opportunity for public comment on this item. if there is any other member, now is your chance. seeing none, public comment is closed. [gavel] >> chairwoman: so i want to make a few comments responding somewhat to public comment. first of all, sort of the elephant in the room, and what some of the speakers spoke about is that the mayor had told former retirement commissioner wendy paskin jordan that if she met with us and had
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support from members of the board of supervisors, then the mayor would reappoint her to the board. ms. paskin jordan came and met with many of us. i immediately hit it off with her. i was incredibly impressed. and then, i guess the mayor decided to change that position. despite the fact that ms. paskin jordan had gotten the support of myself and many colleagues, and instead appointed mr. helfun. that's the mayor's prerogative. but i think that rubbed many people who had been very impressed with her performance on the retirement board in the wrong way. and, unfortunately, i wish it hadn't been handled in that manner. now, having said that, this is the mayor's appointee, and i had a
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chance to meet with mr. helfun, and his commitment to divesting in fossel fuels and to social and government issues, is very clear. he stated unequivocally that those are priorities. i want to mention that pension investments are confusing because -- for me, right? because they rely on investing in the system that oftentimes isn't regulated sufficiently so that it collapses like the banks did in 2008. and then when that happens, the people that suffer and are blamed are often workers and unions, right? and so we're in this bind where we're part of a system that in order for the pensions to be a safe retirement option, requires, you know,
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incredible vigilance. [please stand by]