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Crosscurrents

Daily news roundup for Thursday, October 15, 2015

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San Francisco Manhole

Here's what's happening in the Bay Area, as curated by KALW news:

Shit Storm: Why won't SF stop flooding homes with sewage? // SF Weekly

"San Francisco's sewers have a flooding problem. The city knows it. The residents who deal with it know it. But there's no indication that one of the richest cities in America is doing anything to stop an inevitable flood of shit from pouring into the homes and businesses of certain residents.

"Cayuga is a known trouble spot for San Francisco's aging sewer system. The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, which manages the city's sewers, has acknowledged that the coming El Niño winter might lead to more flooding here and at the city's other flood-prone low spot, the area around 17th and Folsom streets in the Mission District."

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S.F. Supervisors Kim, Wiener to vie for state Senate seat // SF Chronicle

"Next year’s state Senate race is shaping up to be a lot like last year’s race for the state Assembly: It’s officially two Democratic members of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors going against each other.

"Supervisor Jane Kim on Wednesday morning will announce her candidacy for the race. Supervisor Scott Wiener said back in July that he was running.

"Kim is a member of the city’s progressive faction, while Wiener is a staunch moderate. The race has shades of the battle waged in November by Supervisors David Campos, a progressive, and David Chiu, who was a swing vote who often sided with the moderates. Chiu narrowly won."

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California now says violent inmates have long fought fires // SF Gate

"About 1,400 of the state's 3,700 inmate firefighters have previous convictions for violent offenses, California corrections officials said Wednesday, a stunning acknowledgment from an agency that for years said only nonviolent prisoners were allowed in the program.

"Arsonists, kidnappers, sex offenders, gang affiliates and those serving life sentences for murder and other crimes have always been excluded. But, for instance, someone convicted of robbery might be allowed to participate if no one was hurt and the inmate had years of good behavior behind bars, while someone convicted of stalking might be excluded even though state law does not define it as a violent crime, Callison said Wednesday."

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San Jose: Doctors who treat homeless deliver care to the streets // San Jose Mercury

"With one of the nation's highest median household incomes, and headquarters to some of Silicon Valley's most successful tech companies, Santa Clara County also is home to the country's fifth-largest homeless population. And according to a comprehensive study undertaken by Destination: Home -- which ended in 2012, just as Valley Homeless Healthcare's backpack medicine program was starting up -- 53 percent of the cost to care for people living outside was being gobbled up by health care.

"That juncture is evident at Valley Medical Center's 15 clinical sites -- many of them mobile, including farmworker clinics -- and its re-entry center for people recently released from prison or jail. But the work that's most emblematic of the "street medicine" that will be featured at the three-day symposium takes place every Friday, when Homeless Healthcare's backpack team saddles up, as it did last week for a visit to an encampment along Coyote Creek known to its inhabitants as "Jurassic Park.""

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Planning Commission to consider expanding child care impact fee for developers // San Francisco Examiner

"San Francisco has the lowest percent of children out of any major metropolitan city in the U.S., but there’s still an unmet need for child care facilities.

"That’s why Supervisor Norman Yee over the summer introduced an ordinance to expand The City’s child care impact fee to certain commercial and residential developments citywide, an effort the Planning Commission will consider recommending for approval on Thursday.

"Yee said both San Francisco’s projected population increase of up to 200,000 residents in the next decade coupled with the development boom prompted the proposed fee increase."

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Oakland Zoo part of effort to save endangered Puerto Rican toads // Oakland Tribune

"The effort known as the Puerto Rican Crested Toad Species Survival Plan involves four zoos coordinating the timing of mating the adult toads, hatching their eggs, raising their fast-growing tadpoles, and shipping them to Puerto Rico to be released -- simultaneously -- in the same ponds within two protected forest areas in southern Puerto Rico.

"'It's an incredible honor for us to be part of this effort,' said Margaret Rousser, the Oakland Zoo's zoological manager. The survival plan is coordinated by the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, to which the Oakland Zoo belongs."