New Mayor Ed Lee will signal with dozens of appointments to expired commission seats in the next few weeks whether he will fulfill the hopes of the backroom powerbrokers that brought him into office or take an independent course.
According to lists provided to Mayor Lee obtained by CitiReport, at issue are appointments to boards and commissions that approve contracts and permits worth hundreds of millions of dollars to developers and affordable housing nonprofits, and which set policy for renters, Muni riders, health programs, homeless programs, and the city’s implementation of the Sanctuary Law.
Currently expired seats on powerhouse commissions include two on the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, two on the Health Commission, one on the Human Services Commission. In addition, former Mayor Newsom left 15 appointments unfilled as he left office.
During a term that will end in January 2012, Mayor Lee also will make appointments that can swing the majority on the Rent Board, Redevelopment, Building Inspection, Housing Authority and the Environment Commission as well as deciding on the potentially sensitive issue of reappointing Eleanor Johns to the Airport Commission.
Johns, the executive director of the Willie L. Brown Institute on Politics and Policy, served as Mayor Brown’s top aide while he was in City Hall and in Sacramento. Her husband, Richard Johns, was just appointed to the Historical Preservation Commission, resulting in a lawsuit being filed over his qualifications for the appointment.
Mayor Lee will also fill vacancies on commissions viewed as prestige seats because of the perks and privileges that come with them. He faces expired terms for nine members of the Asian Art Museum Board, three vacancies on the Arts Commission, four on the Film Commission, four to the Golden Gate Park Concourse,
(Vacant commission and senior management positions)
- 11 members of the Bicycle Advisory Committee, one to be appointed by each of the eleven Supervisors.
- Ethics Commission, by the Board of Supervisors, for expiring seat of Eileen Hansen for a six year term beginning February 1, 2011
- Four seats on the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District, to be appointed by the Board of Supervisors to represent the public at large for two year terms beginning January 31, 2011
- Sunshine Ordinance Task Force, two vacancies, one for an experienced consumer advocate and one for a person experienced in citizen access
(Information based on Board of Supervisors listing of vacancies on Boards, Commissions and Task Forces. Information may not be current and may not be complete. See: http://www.sfbos.org/index.aspx?page=3045