San Francisco Mayor London Breed addressed the public Tuesday and outlined a promised a plan to bring dollars and life back to the city.
“We’re coming together to recover and reimagine from a very trying time, and we’re going to do so with a smile on our face," she said.
The mayor said
The mayor said she wants to spend $7.5M to hire 50 retired police officers as ambassadors; the friendly faces who greet visitors and make them feel safer at key tourist attractions and transit hubs.
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She also plans to bring live street performances and artwork to key outdoor venues in the city that an estimated 2.9 million people visited in 2019.
"You shouldn’t have only be able to go to the symphony to have that experience," she said. "Just imagine the symphony playing right here outdoors where everyone gets that experience."
In addition, $1 million in the mayor's recovery budget would kickstart San Francisco Wednesdays; an ongoing schedule of events across downtown starting July 1.
Ben Bleiman, who founded a group that represents more than 400 San Francisco bars things the mayor is right on the mark.
"We’ve been saying since the beginning of the pandemic that arts and entertainment weren’t going to be a part of the recovery," he said, "they’re going to be the building block of the recovery – the main backbone for the recovery."
Laurie Thomas, head of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association agrees.
"We have to bring back life to Union Square," she said.
Thomas also said that supervisors need to give businesses owners answers about what will and will not be allowed post-pandemic.
"Because if we’re going to go back to 100% capacity, and if there’s no more 6-foot distancing, that means we have to try like heck to hire more people and figure that out," she explained.
Mayor Breed said if supervisors don't approve her legislation around businesses permitting processes, she'll take the plan directly to voters.
The funding for her recovery plan was added to her 2-year budget which could go to the supervisors in early June.