Restaurants Get Boost from Mayor’s New Team

Connie Bolger

San Francisco's been accused of waging war on its local restaurants, but a new tactic by Mayor Gavin Newsom may reverse that situation.

Late last week, the mayor issued an executive order to create an inter-agency team to facilitate economic development for restaurants.

The restaurant biz is huge in San Francisco, credited with supporting over 46,000 jobs.

The new team will consist of representatives from the Office of Small Business, Department of Building Inspection, Department of Public Works, Fire Department, Department of Public Health, Planning Department, San Francisco Public Utilities Commission and the police department. Representatives from the Municipal Transportation Agency, Department of Environment, and the Entertainment Commission will participate when necessary.

Restaurant owners will find plenty to like about the new initiative. New restauranteurs will get a free review of their pre-application plans, zoning resolution, and clear permitting instructions. The team will also help promote real estate projects in areas zoned for restaurants, and will make recommendations for improving the permitting process overall.

"San Francisco restaurants have stepped up to support their employees’ health and economic well-being," Newsom said. "The City in turn can provide greater certainty and support to entrepreneurs going through the process of opening a restaurant. By proactively engaging the industry through a more targeted business assistance and relationship-building effort, we can become a more effective problem-solver, partner and advocate.”

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