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Monday, June 07, 2004

City succeeds in-spite of; Ammiano tries harder

Both the Chronicle and Examiner report on the behind the scenes efforts that paid off in Virgin Airlines bringing 1500+ jobs to San Francisco and the Bay Area.

In the Chronicle, Virgin Spokeswoman Stacy Geagan was quoted as saying, "The bid succeeded in spite of the widespread perception that California and the Bay Area are anti-business. In the beginning, people might have thought that. But we found the city and state very open to business. They do have an issue with reputation management."

Reputation Management

Unfortunately, San Francisco's reputation as a hospitable city is suffering a major blow from protests seeking to shut-down this week's BIO 2004 conference and Supervisor Ammiano's resolution commending their efforts.

While Geagan's support for doing business ran in the Chronicle, an AP/USA Today story illustrated the problems the City faces in managing our reputation, "[Tom] Ammiano's broadside at the industry is an inauspicious start for a city competing with other municipalities and states trying to woo biotechnology companies..."

Supervisor Ammiano's anti-business resolution going before the Board of Supervisors tomorrow is a low blow to San Francisco's reputation, economy, and the effort to provide insulation against the boom-bust cycles of the tourism industry.

Ammiano's resolution shows how city "leaders" will not hesitate to gain political advantage at the expense of San Francisco. In the world of District Elections, Ammiano is only vulnerable from the left and this resolution is a gesture to those voters contemplating abandoning Ammiano in his supervisor's district the way the progressives abandoned Ammiano in his mayoral bid last year.

To understant his motives, you have to understand his situation. Tom Ammiano's political career climaxed in November of 1999 with his write-in campaign for mayor. Yet he was spanked (20% landslide) by an unpopular mayor a month later and since then Ammiano has be fighting a losing battle to hold onto relevance in San Francisco politics.

So now Ammiano is punishing San Francisco's economy in the hopes of holding onto the only thing he has left: his seat on the Board of Supervisors.

United Front

"The community input, with the state, county, city and airport all pulling together, was impressive," Geagan said.

Governor Schwarzenegger, State Senator Speier, Mayor Newsom, Supervisor Peskin all worked together, succeeding in a major coup. While the backgrounds and vision of these four politicians couldn't be more different, they realized that everyone benefits by a strong local economy.

Tomorrow we'll see which Supervisors are willing to work together for San Francisco and which are more concerned with scoring cheap political points with San Francisco's fringe.

While bringing new jobs to San Francisco maybe too much progress for the some, Ammiano's stooges are going even further by hurting our current tourism-related job market by trying to shut the conference down tomorrow. If they succeed, they will send a clear signal to conference organizers to avoid San Francisco.

The most illuminating quote in USA Today came from BIO spokesman Dan Eramian, "The irony is that while we have a handful of young people protesting the industry, about 3,000 young people came to the BIO career fair looking for jobs."

I for one, hope that the job-seekers succeed, in-spite of the antics of a curmudgeon and a band of regressive blockheads.

- Bob Brigham
Bob Brigham Politics: Bay to the Beltway
Online + Campaigns + Politics + Elections + San Francisco + News + Blogs + Presidential + Battleground + Senate + Congress

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