SAN FRANCISCO, May 11, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Amid the backdrop of the 2018 mayoral special election in June, residents of the Fillmore District are casting doubt on the motives of Supervisors Jane Kim and Mark Leno in hosting a "Meet the Progressives – Future of the Fillmore" event on Saturday, May 12, 2018.
The event is intended to address issues affecting the African American community such as the numerous storefront vacancies, including the 28,000 square foot Fillmore Heritage Center, and issues involving affordable housing and government transparency.
Many Fillmore residents, however, are calling the timing and motivation of the event into question as an apparent attempt to undermine the candidacy of Board of Supervisors President, London Breed, who represents the Fillmore in District 5.
"You can't just strut into a place and think you're going to solve everyone's problems with words a few weeks before the election," says Charles Melacon, Chair of the Lower Fillmore Neighborhood Association. "The fact is, London's been working with the community for years to find solutions that actually benefit the residents."
In January 2018, then-Acting Mayor Breed spoke at a rally supporting the efforts of the New Community Leadership Foundation (NCLF) and other Fillmore-based stakeholders in which she reaffirmed her commitment to ensuring that the Fillmore Heritage Center truly represents the interests of the neighborhood.
"Before we bring anyone to the community, we need to make sure that they are people who can deliver what they're promising," Breed told the crowd of several dozen community activists at the steps of City Hall. "Nothing is more important to me than making sure that this place is for the folks of the neighborhood who actually live there, and that is what we are going to continue to push for."
During a competitive RFP process to transfer ownership of the Fillmore Heritage Center in 2017, Supervisor Breed reiterated her support of a comprehensive community benefits package to be attached to the sale of the multimedia performance venue and restaurant space. After the RFP was rescinded due to lack of sufficient community benefit from the respondents, Breed supported the temporary activation of the space by local residents while the search for a new owner continues, resulting in a Letter of Intent from the City Administrator that remains in effect.
"Honestly, I don't know how much more she can do," said Karim Mayfield of Hard Hitta Promotion, a regional event promoter based in the neighborhood. "The work to transform the Fillmore isn't something that makes headlines and it doesn't fit into sound bytes. When you're in the thick of it, you know that it's complicated, it takes time, but there's a process moving forward and a lot of hard work happening right now to lay the groundwork."
In addition to the Fillmore Heritage Center, Supervisor Breed has publicly supported the renovation and activation of the Fillmore Mini Park, as well as the Fillmore Equity Project, an equity facilitator to convene a group of Fillmore residents, business owners, nonprofits and other stakeholders to develop actionable solutions for the remaining Black community and those that have been displaced.
The "Meet the Progressives" event is scheduled for 1-3pm on Saturday, May 12 at the Origin Club at 1538 Fillmore Street.
Fillmore community stakeholders will gather peacefully outside the venue at 12:45pm to voice concerns regarding the motives of Mark Leno and Jane Kim in staging a political event aimed at discrediting the track record of the current District Supervisor who, they believe, has been working earnestly for years to rebuild the neighborhood.
Contact: Majeid Crawford
New Community Leadership Foundation
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SOURCE New Community Leadership Foundation