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tv   Entertainment Commission  SFGTV  August 22, 2020 12:00pm-2:31pm PDT

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it's fantastic. >> the portola garden tour is the last saturday in september every year. mark your calendars every year. you can see us on the website the commission president. due to the covid-19 health emergency and to protect -- i'm sorry. entertainment commission member cities and the members of the public, city meeting rooms are closed but we will be participating remotely. this precaution is taken pursuant to the various local state and federal orders, declarations and directives. commission members and employees will attend the meeting through video conference and participate in the meetings to the same extent if they were physically present.
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public comment will be available on each agenda item. we are streaming the number across the screen. opportunities to speak during the public comment period are available via the zoom platform using meeting id-848-988-0745 or by calling on the phone -- let me share the screen here. using the zoom platform to speak, raise -- select the raise hand option when it's time for public comment. if calling in by phone, dial star 9 to be added to the speaker line. you will be unmuted when it's your turn to speak. please call from a quiet location, speak clearly and slowly and turn down your television or radio. when your item of interest comes up, dial star 9 to be added to the speaker line. alternatively, while we recommend that you use zoom
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audio or telephone for public comment, you may submit a written public comment through the chat function on zoom. we want to thank sf gov tv and media services for sharing this meeting with the public. we will start with a roll call. >> commission secretary stewart, can you do the roll call? you have to take yourself off mute. not working? okay. okay, i will just go through, then. [roll call]. okay, thank you, we have a quorum, and commissioner perez
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is absent. >> all right. the first order of business is general public comment and for items not listed on the regular agenda, and we'll take this slow, but we're going to ask: is there any public comment for items not listed on the agenda? >> i would share your screen one more time with that call-in number, just in case. >> i do think there's a number of people who are preparing for public comment, and a number of them are emailed. >> there is one hand raised in the attendee list, so i will allow this person to talk. this certain has themselves muted. aria -- sorry if i'm
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mispronouncing your name. >> no problem. >> can you hear us? >> yes, i can. can you hear me? >> yes. >> thank you so much, entertainment commission, for taking this time. i am here representing all of the small- and medium-sized bans in san francisco and bay area. a great deal of us have found success in using some resources. we play near venues such as near bottom of the hill, neck of the woods and the milk bar. a report published by the brooking institute cites that [indiscernible] have been lost due to covid-19's impact on the arts. in addition, the arts make up 504 billion dollars of the u.s. gdp. these numbers are staggering. as a result, it is my humble respectful request of the commission to consider these three items. one, not all performing arts should be in the phase four of sf reopening plan. large indoor venues, yes, but the risk and conditions for the majority of performing arts are not as high and should be assessed differently. number two, outdoor performing arts are already safe and
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managed in accordance with the protocol. outdoor performing arts should be permitted now. number three, the rainy season is coming in november. if we do not use public events to test before the rainy season, artists will be forced to wait until spring of 2021. that is unacceptable. i'm here to support the entertainment commission in reopening the performing arts industry safely. i'm also here to invite the commission to support all forms of artists. thank you for considering my request, and lastly thank you for holding space for yourselves and for all of us during this time of change. i conclude my comment. >> is there anymore comment? >> there is nobody with their hand raised in the public comment. so the answer is no. >> all right, then we're going to close general public comment and move on to the next agenda
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item. the next agenda item is no. 2, which is the approval of the minutes for the august 4, 2020 meeting. i'm going to ask commissioners if we have a motion to approve the minutes [indiscernible]. >> i'll move. >> i'll second it. >> is there any public comment on the approval of the minutes? >> i'm looking in the list, and no one has their hand raised. so i do not see anyone. >> okay, we'll close public comment for the minutes and we can go ahead and do a vote. >> commission secretary, you're still unaudible. >> it could be the earpiece. >> [indiscernible]. >> can you hear me now? >> yeah. >> okay, all right.
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sorry. [roll call]. >> we also have commissioner wang. >> i'm sorry, commissioner wang. >> i'm here. >> and al's on too. >> aye. >> all right. i heard unanimous approval, so we will move on to the next agenda item. oh, i'm supposed to say the minutes have been approved and then gavel down, virtual gavel. the next agenda item is the report from our executive director, and i just want to remind everyone i forgot to say it before that public comment today will be two minutes per item per person.
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thank you. >> thank you, president blindman, and good evening, commissioners. audience, please forgive us, we're still learning how to do this virtually. i think we're all much better in person. so my update for the commission this evening are pretty minimal since we did a bigger update a couple of weeks ago. i have some updated figures in terms of the number of investigations and triage work that we've done within the community, education and response team. i also -- and i can share those with you all via email. i also have been working very heavily along with senior analyst rice on the economic recovery task force within our arts culture hospitality and entertainment staff support group. we've been focused on writing the actual draft proposals in which our group worked with all the task force members on over the last several weeks, and so we're pushing this further along
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in the process. and after this, we're going to be doing secondary and tertiary reviews of all of our own efforts, and that gets further assessed by the erts. so we're excited about that. that's moving along. some really great ideas in there. some of them are more immediate, and i'm hoping to share some of those with you as they are definitely relevant to our work. one of which i definitely foreshadowed on in our previous meeting that i've been working on for several weeks with the full entertainment commission team and president blindman has been aware of this as well, just trying to find a pathway to permit and enforce or regulate the entertainment activity that is already allowable within the health order and outdoor guiding guidelines. to essentially just be able to provide a pathway to ensure that what's already happening out in
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the community can be done with respect to the health order and ensuring that it's compliant, just because we do continue to receive complaints, and when we go out, some of the time it's not compliant, and what we're more concerned about than -- i mean, sound is important, but what we're most concerned about is ensuring that, you know, we're not spreading transmission and that folks are not, you know, they are distanced from each other and not using a brass or wind instrument, at this time not singing. those are not allowable activities within entertainment. so i do not have an update. i have pushed that up towards the mayor's office, and i'm hoping to hear a bigger update within the next week to share with you all, and i do note that some folks are probably going to comment on that idea after my director's report. and i just wanted to share what president blindman was saying.
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we received nine letters today for the commission that we tried to -- and i'm not sure if we were able to get all of them uploaded in time, but -- okay, great. so they are in your folder now, but it was very last minute that we received them, but essentially members of the public, artists, musicians saying, you know, please let us activate outdoor spaces with arts and entertainment programming, and so you may hear from them tonight. aside from that, i do not have any other big updates, but i am happy to take questions. >> we do have someone with their hand raised, a caller for public comment. >> [indiscernible] any commissioners have comments or questions first? >> yes, i'd like to actually ask a question. so i'm looking in the folder and
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i only see one letter. so you mentioned that there were nine communications and that some folks are going to be speaking during public comment. the people who are not going to be able to participate in public comment, can we have their communications read on record? >> they are two-page long letters. so i can try my best. again, they are not really organized because i guess an update we haven't shared is that we are moving this week. [please stand by]
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-- they would not allow it. if you had protection around with a microphone in the screen, that wouldn't be allowed either, right? >> the health department has not made any confessions yet on allowing singing in another form. so at this time that's a no. >> did they make any recommendations or suggestions to them? >> we can, if we hear from our industry, from our subject matter experts with ideas,
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absolutely. that's what we do, and we are always floating up ideas for adaptive reopening that is not prescribed in the current reopening phase. >> okay, so i guess whoever is listening today should really -- especially musicians -- you have any alternative suggestions -- i mean, instrumentals are great but we need on to hear the singers -- >> especially if there's science that backs up that argument, that's what the health officer would be looking at. especially if there are other cities that are already doing it in another way. and that's something that we are going to be able to look into as well. but, again, it means a lot more coming from the industry. >> right. okay. thank you. >> if i could add to that too, so we have made attempts to have representatives from the department of health here at the hearing and thus far we have been unsuccessful in having them
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join us. but we will continue to work on that from -- because i personally would just love to be able to ask them ourselves what -- what science they're using and how we might be able to come up with reasonable solutions that are healthy and safe that can also preserve things like playing a trumpet, for example. exactly like you said, commissioner lee, if you are 30, 40, 50 feet away from any humans and you have a shield in front of you, is that scientifically okay? or is it not? and these are questions that i think that are really legit, especially for our industry. also for the people who rely on the commission for permitting so those are questions that we ask. we will just continue trying to have somebody or some response
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from the department of public health on this matter. >> president bleiman, i can't get my hand to show electronically. i'd like to make a comment. >> commissioner lee: the other thing that i want to speak to is that i don't agree that the most compelling arguments come from the industry, so if that's truly the case, i question why we exist as commissioners. i would like to think that all of us in our own field are subject matter experts to some extent. and i would like to suggest that there's a difference between -- i mean, i think that if we want to make recommendations to the health department that we absolutely should be doing it and could do it. i agree with our executive director that science helps support that. but i think that there's a difference between advocacy and then science-based advocacy. i just think that there might be a place for both. so i personally don't think that we should silence our fellow commissioners. i think that if we want to make
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recommendations as a commission, i would argue that is exactly why we exist. if we get the support of people from the industry i think that is wonderful. and, obviously, it adds weight to it. but i don't think that we should not do something if we feel compelled to do so. that's it. >> i don't disagree either. i think that we need to play dual roles just like ourselves dual role. maybe to regulate sound and entertainment and we promote sound and entertainment. i think we have a duty to do everything in our power to figure out some sort of path for healthy, safe, responsible, outdoors at this point with entertainment. and i will say that executive director wylan and her staff are hard at work on that every single day.
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but, you know, the realities of the pandemic are that, you know, for whatever reason -- and i have no idea what reason that is -- it doesn't seem that the entertainment industry is being prioritized or considered in the plans. and i'm personally very concerned about that and trying to help and our staff is. and i think that we all have a role. >> this is laura -- can i -- >> please. >> i mean, can we call a hearing on issues related to public performing arts and music on this? and get the d.p.h. -- i mean, i don't know that d.p.h. -- i mean, i adore d.p.h. but i don't know that they necessarily have the science on this.
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how do we get the -- how do we make the science available so that d.p.h. and the entertainment commission and the industry and patrons are all on the same page regarding what is and isn't safe and to make sure that we're maximizing entertainment access as much as we can, while also keeping everyone safe. i don't feel that i know exactly what those lines are. and i would like that to be and an evidence and science-formed decision so that we can move as close to that line as possible in terms of making entertainment available. >> you know, and i think that is a great idea. what we try to do is to say, you know, can we get a representative from d.p.h. come in and to give us some help on this. and they've not responded to us. so we haven't heard back from them, including a letter that i wrote and a letter that -- a request through the various
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channels. >> as a public health -- i'll follow up with director wyland and you and see what i can do to help. >> yeah, i think that it would be really be helpful. there's a lot of questions that we're getting -- >> yeah, no, these are super valid questions that people are asking. >> just the question that commissioner lee asked, you know, how far away does a singer have to be in order for it to be safe. we know that there's a certain distance that is fine and we have seen it in speeches, events, people have removed their mask and it's been okay. and the science may not be there yet but that doesn't mean that we can't try. meanwhile, you know, the -- tonight we have the independent venue alliance which will be potentially the exact people
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that would be able to put on events outdoors, here to tell us about the state of their venues they actually have. and i think that it will be an interesting conversation tonight. maybe not a particularly happy one. so, you know, i think that -- personally i think that the path forward is figuring out safe ways to have outdoor entertainment. people are outdoors anyway, why couldn't you entertain them while they're out there? and so these are great questions. and commissioner thomas, we would love help on this. it's just been difficult to do. probably for good reason. you know, people are very busy and they have a lot going on. but we have an industry that is really suffering here. so, thank you. >> if i could just add president bleiman, to your point, this is why this commission exists -- to give this community a voice.
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i think that we are in a position to do something and i encourage us to do something. and i would just add as far as the singing component, i'm not sure why a singer couldn't wear a mask. i mean, if that's what allows them to do their profession like everyone else is doing, if i could do it, if i had the voice, i would wear a mask. if i had the looks and the voice, i would do it. i'm done. >> i mean, i think we're all in agreement here and i think that there's a place for advocacy here and i think we can be thoughtful and take into account all of the factors that are going on. but also i think that we'll see tonight, and i think we have seen that we are, like you said, we are a voice. and we are not -- we're not nothing here. so it's worth -- it's worth advocating and trying. >> i have one more comment. to add to that, we'r there are l businesses out there that are
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hurting. we know that the schools have priority. we know that, you know, just people in general with safety being important. but the small business -- you know, we have -- everybody has been patient and they're really running out of time because we're losing them one by one. and whether it's musicians, that could be handled with shields in front of us and maybe, you know, like you say, maybe 10 feet away from the first customer audience. i mean, there's ways -- i mean, managing a band for -- i managed a band for three years and i don't think that i got spit on once. even in front of them. but i see the problem. but there are ways to shield that. and even singers, like you say, you could sing through a mask. that keeps the airborne stuff out. but i kind of understand. but it's time to not be on the bottom of the priority list anymore. i think that it's time that we move up. along with the other bars and the lounges and the other small
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businesses now that are just kind of being patient and trying to figure this out. >> president bleiman: anymore comments from commissioners? and i will just add at the very end here, that i'm trying to be very diplomatic about this because i do understand that it is hard through a pandemic. but my patience is notched up really high right now and it's kind of wearing thin on this. i do think that we need to take steps to advocate respectfully and thoughtfully. but firmly for the industry. and i hope that each and every one of us considers that moving forward. >> president bleiman, if i can let you know that we're getting chat and there are actually questions. you might want to explain what public comment is so we don't
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disappoint these people that we don't answer. >> go ahead. >> president bleiman: they all -- everything will be put in the public comment record. and director wyland you can explain it. >> i did say at the beginning of it, but there's multiple ways to do comment and one is through chat, is that correct? >> but they're actually asking questions and i want the public to know that we're unable to answer them. in the chat they're putting questions. >> there's a couple things. you as the commission always have the ability to answer questions if you want. you are just not obligated to. and the public comments that you are seeing come in, one note that we should say to any public commenters that would rather be verbal, please do not write in the chat because you are limited to one public comment per item on the agenda. so just keep that informed.
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so president bleiman, i would read the comments and questions in the chat and take those as public comment and then we can take people from dial in. >> president bleiman: and my personal feeling is that it's not a great -- public comment is not a great venue for q. and a. anybody with questions, please ask in our public comment. so i'm seeing one here about whether it's -- [broken audio] >> bad connection. >> president bleiman: [broken audio] >> you're having technical problems with president bleiman's audio. >> clerk: president bleirman, we can't -- >> president bleiman: can you hear me now? >> clerk: yes. >> president bleiman: so if you have a specific question
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email, call, ask staff, this is not the venue for answering [broken audio] but if you do have comments, please do provide them in whatever -- whichever way that works for you. if that makes sense. everybody hear me okay still? all right. so this agenda item i would like to open things up to public comment and please help. >> clerk: yes, president bleiman, someone had their hand up with a phone call. and they were the first one. and then we can do the chats and several other hands up. so let's get right to it. hello, caller, you are unmuted and you have two minutes. oh, now you're muted.
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okay. it looks like they have their phone muted. so we can move on to the chat comments. >> president bleiman: do you want me to read those or do you want to read them yourself? >> and i would just recommend that you share the screen one more time with that call-in number. >> president bleiman: so let's start by sharing the screen and read the chat comments. >> clerk: so we have a chat comment from jen katz and the question is, will film screenings and dance be okay for outdoors sooner than singers and wind instrumentalists? we have another chat comment
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from spacehouse arts. the question is, are there any details for the small venue meetings tonight? i'm going to go to mute. the caller can speak now. so i'm going to let in albert g. albert, you are unmuted and you have two minutes. >> caller: am i unmuted now? >> clerk: yes, you are unmuted. >> caller: very cool. i can't see myself, but you guys look so tired. is this the post office? what can i say? you know, the world is what it is. andrew would ask me to speak regarding the international arts festival and they came up with all of these amazing things with the art student society and how much money they bring in and what they mean to the culture and the kids.
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artists have a right to earn a living. i think that's the bottom line. and, you know, they pay mortgages and rent and they take care of their kids and they have a right to feed them, just like the health commissioners do, the people on that panel. they have salaries and they get to do that. i think that people have a right to it. they have approved outdoor restaurants. there are chefs, there are sous-chefs and there's waiters and then you have the patron sitting around without masks. and i'm assuming that they don't have plastic shields between them and their pastrami. i think that they can actually eat their food. they've allowed all of this to happen. an outdoor venue where people are socially distanced and singers cannot sing with a mask on. it cannot be done. for the singers it's a really taxing profession.
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for somebody that is really a performer. but there's ways to get distance. if they can have a distance and they can allow that, they can allow a socially distanced performance where the audiences have masks and there's enough distance between them and the stage outdoors. there's a technical term for this, and it's called no-brain no-brainer. and that's all i have to say. thank you very much, i really appreciate you allowing me to do that and to tell me you guys you're my heroes. thanks a lot. it's really terrific. so, bye. >> president bleiman: thank you, albert. >> clerk: all right, the next caller is judy chutani. hello, judy. you are unmuted. >> caller: okay, can you hear me now? >> clerk: yes, go ahead, you have two minutes. >> caller: i am tha naomi judy
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chutani. i'm an artist and i would like to ask for outdoor arts performing arts. and it's safe, they're managed in accordance with the city's own safety protocols. they should be allowed as permitted use now. arts are important because they unify communities, this is an important issue right now. 72% of americans believe that arts unify our communities regardless of age, race and ethnicity. 73% agree that the arts help you to understand other cultures better. this perspective is observed across all dem gravic and economic categories. these statistics help to demonstrate that it's very important that the public can be expoabsed texposed to performin. the arts help to us see the world from different perspectives and give us empathy and to understand people and places and periods of history,
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issues which we may otherwise be unfamiliar. they comfort us in our grief and energize in celebration. they are important because they can act as a catalyst for change. they can start a revolution. i have been involved with the japanese-american group psuedo for solidarity that connected japanese-americans whose families were incarcerated during world war ii with other groups that support the central americans and detention centers and black lives matter. as an artist i would like to have my dream installation of large-sized drawings of children and a healing ritual for people to acknowledge children in prisons in a covid-safe manner. we'd like to support you and we are looking to open the industry safely. thank you. >> clerk: thank you, judy. next comment is from lisa
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grafiano. hi, lisa. you have been unmuted. you have two minutes. >> caller: i'm lisa with the band for nomasari. i'm a performing musician, with bands like us need to perform live music. it's an important part of the event. a band leader can spread good mood by talking in between songs and getting people to feel at home. live music creates a welcoming atmosphere, a warmth of spirit. store owners and cafés know of the positive effects of live performances for their businesses. so i think that outdoor live performances go hand-in-hand with phase three reopening of the stores, public parks and other spaces. performing is part of my income and part of my band mates too. i sell more c.d.s at live performances than online.
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and earn tips just like waiters and cabdrivers. which i share with my band mates. i don't really want my band to go rogue and start performing without a permit or even rehearse during this pandemic. we need clear guidelines with checklists from the department of public health. specifically made for outdoor performing arts. san francisco international arts festival would like to help the department of public health to create these guidelines and to support the entertainment commission in reopening the arts industry safely. this can be done through a prototype outdoor festival at fort mason on october 24-25, 2020, just before the rainy season starts. this event can be a way to test operations, guidelines and
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procedures for outdoor performing arts. thank you. >> clerk: thank you, lisa. going to screen share for one moment. all right, the next person in line to speak is a person named shau shau. hi, sasha, you are unmuted. you can go ahead and speak. you have two minutes. >> caller: can you hear me, can you hear me now? >> clerk: yes, we can hear you. caller: i'm sasha higby. i have seen the way that arts can feed our spirits, both individually and communeally. i'm speaking this evening to ask the city to advance the priority of outdoor performing from phase four of the reopening plan to phase two or phase three. there are many kinds of performing arts and artists that
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can perform outdoors safely. you have heard this already, in accordance with the city's health care protocols and guidelines. it is important that we get to test outdoor performing arts events been the onset of the rainy season. otherwise, planning for these type of events will fall behind another six months. but after months of essential activity only, our spirits feel dry and the spirits of our children also feel this thirst and frustration. for months essential activity has been outlined solely as buying food and hardware. in this process, it seems that fewer restrictions have been laid with these activities because they are deemed "essential." however, these essential outdoor activities involve more serious health hazards than the opening of outdoor performances, which is what we are proposing. we need performances now.
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we have to experience the essential activity of art to flourish. permissions for these events can always be withdrawn if necessary. the arts help us to survive during the hardest of times whether people have been deprived of all else. for some, the arts is their life and breath. the art provide a mighty distraction for which the soul may climb and look forward, gaining perspective and patience. it often seems that the arts are the first to be cut when it is one of the last elements that stay with us to the end. in addition to the spiritual importance the arts create jobs, and economic benefits. so take the outdoor performing out of phase four to bring our city back to life. the benefits of doing so will be immediate. >> two minutes are up, yeah.
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>> clerk: thank you, shasha. we have a phone caller. caller, you have been unmuted and state your name. you have two minutes. >> caller: hello. >> clerk: hello, caller, you are unmuted and state your name. two minutes. >> caller: i am joshua bye and i'm the associate director of safe house arts and one of those impacted by covid working with andrew wood and the sf art festival for reopening arts events this year. there are few compelling arguments for not pursuing this. it should be in phase four of san francisco's reopening plans. the plans focus on large indoor concert halls. the risks and conditions for most other types of performing arts are not as high and should be assessed differently. as said, we need to stage a
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public event on october 24th 25th, to test the guidelines and procedures for outdoor performing art -- small outdoor performing arts before the onset of the rainy season in november. otherwise, the next opportunity to do so would be spring 2021. creating and implementing procedures such as reduced audience sizes and contact tracing and social distancing, not for just outdoor events, but to be tested for ethicity before the broader rollout. and to create an opportunity to help to support and sustain the arts community in a time of unprecedented catastrophe and to provide avenues that will help the public deal with the unmitigated stress of shelte shelter-in-place about allowing people to feel comfortable about gathering comfortably. this is not the first pandemic that i dealt with. i have brought knowledge and expertise in what it takes to navigate these catastrophic times. i hope that the commission is open to listening and exploring what the options are. thank you. >> clerk: thank you, caller.
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you have another caller in line. caller, are you there? you have been unmuted? are you there? okay, this is the same call tary werthat we had before that is sl muted, unfortunately. maybe they should do a chat. okay, next person in line to speak is miss tilley dumar. miss tilley dumar, can you hear us? >> caller: i can hear you. my name is tilley, and i along with my premiere dance company
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have been at the art festival since 2015. in addition we have frequently performed at the ethnic dance festival since the 1980s. we would like the commission to address the request for a safe presentation of outdoor arts events from september to november of this year before the advent of the rainy season. which is likely to curtail all such events until spring 2021. unlike large indoor concert halls, the risk of performing in an outdoor setting with social distancing protocols in place are minimal. we are open to the idea of having a prototype presentation that helps to develop the guidelines for such performances. these events will greatly assist in providing the musicians and the dancers with affording them to perform their art and earn some compensation that is grossly decreased by this pandemic. it will also be a faith value in promoting the social and mental well-being of the audience.
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it is our earnest desire to support the entertainment commission in reopening the performing arts industry safely. we would greatly appreciate all efforts that the commission puts in place to support the endeavors of the performing artists. in doing so, the artists will be able to bring meaningful presentations that will provide solace to communities, and sustaining their artistry and means of livelihood. thank you for giving me an opportunity to speak to you today. i do want to let you than you cannot dance with masks on. thank you. >> clerk: thank you. next person waiting is nola mariono. nola, can you hear us? nola is muted. nola, if you could unmute
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yourself. >> caller: can you hear me now? >> clerk: yes. you have two minutes. >> caller: okay, sorry about that, technology glitch. okay, well, dear members of the entertainment commission, thank you for convening this evening to address this important issue. my name is nola mariano and today i'm speaking in support of the san francisco international arts festival petition to have an enhanced city guidelines. in considering the safe reopening of the performing arts it must be noted that in addition to the diversity of artists making and performing work, there's equally wide range of scale and size of artists and art organizations producing the work. i think that it was a mistake to put all art organizations into phase four that focuses on indoor halls and their health risk. the arts festival, while still a -- (indiscernible) is a diverse group for services
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including marketing, and production and box office support. these will be scheduled to meet the city guidelines and available for live video streaming. it has guidelines that go beyond those currently provided to include an organized digital box office, house managed to get people safely seated. and sanitized facilities and the safe backstage area. we need the city health department to create appropriate guidelines. it is important to stage a prototype public event as a way to test operation guidelines and procedures for outdoor performances before the rainy season in november. we want to support the entertainment commission in reopening the performing arts industry safely and we are entrusting you to other governmental departments. one final note, these are difficult and isolating times. the festival believes that their audience that always attended live performances to hear a diverse perspective and to
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experience that human narrative to look at complex societal events. art provides not only entertainment and understanding, but a coping mechanism that could be viewed as part of our public mental health care system. thank you. >> clerk: thank you. all right, next person waiting to speak is makechi newburgh, can you hear us? please unmute yourself. >> caller: hello, i am super grateful to be here just plugging in and participating with my civic duty of being part of the commission. it's great to see all of your faces. i am calling in on the phone and not on video, i'm not quite sure how this is working.
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>> clerk: we can hear you but we can't see you. >> caller: okay. so basically i would just say that i have been in san francisco for over 20 years. i am a songwriter and an actor, theatre actor and commercial actor. and went on to develop my own work and got an m.s.a. at the california (indiscernible) [no audio] >> clerk: it looks, unfortunately, we lost nkechi. maybe nkechi will come back on. okay. do you want me to go to the next person? >> president bleiman: go to the next person and if we could get nkechi back -- >> clerk: okay, this next person is matthew kiefe. matthew, you are unmuted. you have two minutes. >> caller: hi, i am matthew
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kiefe and i work at the presidio theatre at presidio park. thank you for letting me do a comment. art organizations are uniquely positioned to give connection and community and healing safely. and as we have already seen unrest in the form of protests and skirmishes with police across the nation, the current political landscape. and as a new resident in san francisco, i can attest to the dangers of unorganized gatherings of people. just this week thousands upon thousands of people descended on my neighborhood, many without masks who left garbage, including dirty diapers strewn across the area. people are gathering regardless of whether they're allowed to or whether it is safe. we are asking the outdoor performing arts be allowed to reopen to balance and organize outdoor activities to give citizens a greater variety of
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venues to visit in order to make all outdoor venues safer and less crowded. our public parks are not designed to organize audiences, but our arts venues are capable of ticketing events, providing audio and video support, and organizing space in a way that is much safer than what is currently happening. thank you for considering these comments. clerk: thank you, matthew. all right, next person waiting to speak is andrew wood. andrew, if you're there. >> caller: hello. this is andrew wood. thank you, commissioners, for taking the time to listen to us this evening. and i did attend the small business commission meeting last week where the doctor spoke. and i think that one of the things that is going to be an issue is that the guidelines that run behind the permitting
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are not in place. and they don't have the health department seeming to have any intention of putting the guidelines in place soon. what this means is that even if the performing arts is a permitted activity, there's going to be a lag time while the health department comes up with the guidelines to allow you to go ahead with the permitting. if the permitting process itself could take up to a month, that means even if it was allowed today it would be towards the end of september before anything would happen. as a few people have said, we're trying to get some prototype events up in october. and some artists are trying to do this and trying to do it on october 24-25th and if we don't get a chance to do it, we don't go for the next six mont months. so how can we work with the
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health department to make things move along a bit. so rather than going and doing a new mayoral order or an entire new health ruling, are there ways that things could be done at the start level around regulations that are within the pursue of the entertainment commission? so maybe borrowing from what is already allowed for small family gatherings or religious gatherings and even some the shared space gatherings. if we're not able to move things along in a fashion that allows us to test some of these things, it's going to set us back by quite some time. and i think that, again, what other people have said is that the legacy of the entertainment commission kind of means that you are our guys in dealing with other city departments. the whole idea of getting permits so that performing arts
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can happen, so that entertainment can happen, is -- you're kind of our inside voice. and so if you can really advocate for the community, and as well as being a commissioner role. to the other branches of government and to the other departments -- >> andrew uryou'r you're out of. >> clerk: thank you, andrew. we have a comment in the zoom chat that i will read from joe crieter. i am a artist and i have been creating public art in the city for 25 years. i am creating a piece of public art with dancers dancing off the side of a building and rerecorded music. this project is a gift to the neighborhood offered for free and in partnership with noad and co-tenderloin and jewish action.
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the project is just completed a successful summer program for youth in the tenderloin and we know what it take i takes to bed safe. keep public art alive and give san francisco some hope. next person in line to speak is a caller. hello, caller, you have been unmuted. can you hear us? >> caller: hi there, sorry about that. can you hear me? >> clerk: state your name and your two minutes. >> caller: great, thank you, thank you so much for taking the time to listen and for all of your support and just everything that you're doing. i am kevin nelson and i work for magic theatre, which is a 53-year-old mid-sized theatre.
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over the last several months we have created several plans with the hopes of being able to perform something outdoors for small limited audiences. but, unfortunately, all of the plans have fallen through without any path or guidelines to allow for public performance. theatres and performing artists have all been grouped together under the gross assumption that it can only happen with large audiences packed closely together. but there are many artists and organizations that could easily hold responsible distanced performances outdoors. it would be much safer if there was a checklist for public performance, but artists could reference prior to any presentation. with no guidance, there's no way to do this officially. and without the local guidance and support we're also facing difficulty if gaining approval from the artist labor union to approve of any work at all. it's my hope that the entertainment commission is able to help to support the
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performing arts and the artists by working towards a permitting process to allow for small public performances. other gatherings are occurring outside in parks, restaurants and in other spaces. there's no reason that a small performances for limited audiences would not be as safe, if not safer, than some of these other gatherings. the audience members would know what to expect and tracing would be easy to implement if anyone who attends did fall ill. thank you for your support and for helping us to try to reach a solution. thank you so much. >> clerk: thanks, kevin. so ncheki is back. so let's let ncheki back on. >> caller: okay, am i unmuted? i believe that you can hear me. i just want to make [broken
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audio] somehow it works. okay. are you hearing me twice? >> clerk: you are cutting out a little bit. >> caller: okay. i'll try this. one, i want to say, hi i am nkechi newburgh and i'm a die-hard lover of san francisco, being a singer/song writer and turned performance artist and i got my m.s.a. from cal integrated, and a bit of science, and i have created a body of work (indiscernible) and a work in progress. basically my hope is to be able to engage and play in order to learn more about diversity. and it's been fun and i have put it in a couple places and have opportunities. with our new present crisis i just want to say that i believe
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in my own personal heart that people need an opportunity to have a checklist of issues that we are talking about. they went from (indiscernible) to two humans talking at a time with each other about real issues. it is incredibly refreshing. and so just recently i was at marina bay and i did a little mini-performance and was recording for myself and people, the feedback was, oh, art. so i want to remind us that art is part of our life. when i serve the homeless... [no audio] >> clerk: unfortunately, she cut out again. president bleiman, what would you like? >> president bleiman: are there more comments?
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>> she only had nine seconds left on the clock anyway. >> president bleiman: if you're listening now, i would just encourage her to reach out to us, whether starting with the staff and she wanted to -- for her additional nine seconds, so we want to definitely hear the rest of it. and i will remind everyone that when you reach out to our staff, you are not limited by minutes. you can have long emails and conversations and we will be able to answer your questions. is that it for public comment? do we have anyone else? >> clerk: there's nobody else. >> president bleiman: all right. i want to acknowledge how much public comment we had there and i want to thank everyone for chiming in and i want to say that we hear you, i hear you. and we do what we can to remedy
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this. within the confines of what we can work with. thank you. with that i'm going to close public comment. and then move on to the next agenda item. the next agenda item is number 4. and this is an update on the state of san francisco's independent music venues, and this is going to be from san francisco independent venue alliance. >> hi, i am fred bomes, and i'm the president of the independent venue alliance, which is a group that represents over 20 independent venues in san francisco. and the surrounding. and the sizes of the venues vary from capacities of, say, 50 to
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100 to over a thousand, our largest. and, you know, obviously, as everybody here knows, you know, we were the first to be shut down and we have no clear idea at all about when the reopening schedule, phase four, is going to be, even for the smaller places. and, you know, in reality, without any assistance or an opportunity to generate income, you know, o possibly 50% of thee venues will go out of business by the beginning of next year. which is what w we have formed this alliance for. we have done some events online webathons, where the artists are streaming with contributions from home. and various other things. and we have managed to raise
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close to $50,000 out of the public donations. and we're going off private funding arts foundation funding and that sort of thing. and the whole purpose of this group is to come together and to be able to have a focal point to do this kind of fun fundraising activity. and we really appreciate the entertainment commission's support with us from the beginning of listening to us for various things. but as this goes on and on we're coming to a position where we really need, you know, now more, you know, drastic measures of any kind. essentially anything that we can get. as somebody pointed out earlier, these small businesses like us are, you know, sitting patiently and trying to wait and see what -- what will happen or what
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measures will be given. and, really, as every month goes by for venues, there's an extraordinary amount of expense that is not sustainable. you know, each of these places is obviously a very large building because it has to, you know, in the good old days of having shows, it would host hundreds of people. so the rents are enormously high. and there's all kinds of fees and taxes and massive, you know, garbage collection bills. and all of those kind of things that are still ongoing and are very hard to negotiate out of in a situation, even though certain things have been undisturbed across the board. other niggling things continue, for example, organization like csac who have recently written
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to several of our venues with a bill asking for their licensing money for, you know, the last six months, a period where everyone has been out of operation. and then, obviously, now we'll have to go into finding, you know, what those organizations are like and negotiating out. a lot of these places don't have many staff working and the time to do these kind of things. so there's all kinds of, you know, situations that have to be dealt with on a weekly and monthly basis that continue to build and sap the resources of an industry here who has zero income at all. and no future of being able to say when that will happen. i've heard so many people talking tonight about the possibility of doing outdoor shows.
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and that is something that we will be very interested in, being able to pursue. this week, the venue that i'm the general manager of, the chapel, did the first -- or i believe the first show in san francisco that was permitted, actually, an official show. it was in the outdoor parking lot of the temple with an extremely limited attendance of 30 people. and it was an instrumental performance. and incredibly strict guidelines. to do everything -- it was very successful and went off without a hitch, obviously, that amount of people are not really able to be profitable. it was a high ticket price for vendors to have a benefit for independent venue alliance. wo but one thing that was urged at that event is of the whole closed down area of valencia that was going on that weekend,
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that event that we had was by far the most -- the place where the real social distancing rules were being taken into account and were in effect because they weren't really happening anywhere else. so i think that one of the things that we find very frustrating is attempting to do things like benefit concerts or the kind of things that people are talking about here is that we see in delores park and all of these other places, and golden gate park and other places, huge amounts of people outside and not following social distancing guidelines and alcohol consumption and music playing from, you know, large distance and other things and sometimes bands playing. so it's like there's a concert happening but it's completely unregulated. what essentially we're asking here really is to just bring something that is unregulated
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into some order. i think that it would be reasonable if everyone was at home and we were -- you know, we were pushing hard to get everyone to come out and to do something that there would be some opposition to it, but, really, what we're doing is at this point is suggesting that we -- we are the people who know better than anyone else how to regulate an audience, to have all of the security, and, you know, to have hundreds of people that work for us that we could -- we would love to give some employment to and some artists some employment to, and raise awareness, all of these things. but more than anything else to actually to create an environment that would be safer than what is currently happeni happening. so i lend my voice to all of those people that are saying that, and i would love to be able to work on something like that as we have had that successful experience this weekend. and that even as a small event
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could hopefully be the gateway into something else. i have a whole list of things that i can talk about if you want, but is there anything specific that you want would like me to focus on? >> i've got a question. how many of the venues do you have on your list that have patios or anything outdoors, accessible to outdoors? >> very few. there's one place that has a large parking lot and a patio. but most of the others have nothing. >> president bleiman: sidewalk? >> a sidewalk, yes, some of them have a sidewalk. some of them have a sidewalk and are currently are on valencia street and places where they a closed down situation going on. and others don't currently have something like that but they would love to be able to have that opportunity to close down
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an area of their street and to, you know, to be able to put on, you know, some kind of event of some kind. >> president bleiman: okay, i think that is a problem, you know, all of us to have big venues and we can't go inside is an issue. we're trying to do whatever we can to think outside of the box to use the streets and the sidewalk. and they've been doing the shared street programs and they're trying to figure out things. so if you guys -- you should come up with any ideas, i mean, we'll start off with the musician thing first, you know, and try to get the musicians out there and performing safely and then we'll have to try to get the audience there. >> right. >> there's really no answer. >> i mean, what we really -- you know, what we wanted to look at was an area like the amphitheater in the park or
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stone grove where there currently isn't anything happening and there normally would be in their festival, somewhere like that, where we could have something that is set -- we could overextend the amount of limitation guidelines beyond even what they're asking and still be able to have a few people there because, you know, i think that the official capacity of say the park and the amphitheater is close to 3,000 or something. so you could have even just -- you know, even if you just had 300 people in that huge of a space or whatever it would be, that would be something. and, you know, it would enable -- it would then be a benefit for many venues. you know, we are non-profit, so it wouldn't be, you know, it would take a lot of boxes for people to support it. >> president bleiman: so you
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were thinking of -- if you had an opportunity to have an outdoor venue you would get together with the other venues and be like a fundraiser to help -- >> yeah. >> president bleiman: is that what you're trying to propose? >> yes, exactly. so it's all independent venues. boi.>> president bleiman: right. >> so it goes from places, like the church to as places as 1015 fulsome. but what would be a sedate affair, a daytime event, i think that a lot of people associate in their mind around the situation that they're thinking of something like a nightclub atmosphere. that's not what we're suggesting at all. it would be about the music and it feels like -- and, obviously, i'm sure that many of you agree with this, that at this point
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being fairly victimized. a couple weeks ago in sonoma there was a small instrumental show that was cancelled while the same weekend there was a horse event that had over a thousand people attending. that doesn't make any sense, you know. and there's -- you know, there's scientific evidence that music itself transmits the virus, there's no real sense on what is happening here. the word concert is terrifying people, but there's no relationship to, you know, what we're really suggesting is something that would be more regulated and more sedate than what is actually currently happening. >> president bleiman: okay. we have had this discussion offline, ben and i and another organization, and we have been thinking in the lines like this, but it's a big one. so i guess that really some
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guidelines from the health department. i guess that we're kind of stuck. >> yeah. i mean, i'm not, obviously -- i realize their position and i really appreciate all of the, you know, the support that you're giving and i'm not saying that it's an easy matter. it's just at this point it's starting to get confusing as to what exactly -- the logic aspect of it has disappeared. it's a convenient thing to put us to the end of the thought process around this completely. but at this point if it's about the congregation of people and the spreading of the virus, then it makes little sense because there's already people congregating like this, you know, either unofficially, just in parks or at restaurants and other things. and, you know, even if we had to go to the length like i said of being more distant than everyone
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else, we would take it. you know, whatever it needs to be. you know, and and this weekend's event was very successful, but hopefully that -- you know, that can lead to something because just being able to do something with 30 people and then instrumental band is not really -- it's not going anywhere on its own, you know. even though lots of people wanted to go. >> president bleiman: i don't have anymore comments. other commissioners, any questions or comments for fred? >> fred, i just want to say that i hear you loud and clear and a lot of the people who gave public comment today as well. i think that i can speak for almost all of us on this commission when i say that we really do deeply understand the
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value of music and performance when it comes to culture and community. and we want to be your advocate. and we definitely understand your frustration. that maggie and staff are working so, so hard to find path ways to include clear guidelines for outdoor performing arts as we continue to roll out these shared spaces. so it sounds like you're really asking two things. one, finding, again, those clear guidelines on how to conduct outdoor performances and then, second, some way to be able to facilitate the use of, like, public park spaces once those are rolled out. >> yes, that would be -- that would be fantastic for the opportunity to do something to fundraise essentially. we can -- and we will continue to do it online virtually
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anyway, because, you know, we have to do something. but, yes, absolutely. but also, you know, if your weight as a group to be able to assist us with some of the things that we -- though the venues are having to deal with, that are essentially sapping whatever reserves they have that are allowing them to continue through this at the moment. it would be really be helpful. maybe that's not a conversation that we have right here now, but a list of some of those things that -- we've been doing a lot of questionnaires with all of the -- all of the venues and a lot of, you know, sort of taking information in about all of these kind of things. which we can share with you, some of which may be helpful to you. but a lot of it really shows how this is -- i mean, i'm sure this is no surprise to anyone, but
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it's not a sustainable situation going forward because there's still huge amounts of costs. and there's really nothing. you know, and i think that also hopefully these are all things that we can do to help to further the situation and to also learn from it and in the future help -- as they'll have to rebuild and not have everything come back in exactly the same way and in insane amounts of unnecessary fees and hoop jumping and all of that kind of thing when we have to come back and to try to earn some money. and it will probably be a slow process coming back and everything else. that period also could end up taking a lot of people down. so -- >> absolutely. where so many other industries have been able to pivot during this time -- >> right. >> we haven't had a lot of room to do that. >> yeah, i mean, you can't --
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there's nothing that we can sell online, there's -- and we can sell a bit of merchandise or whatever, but it's not realistic, it's all a drop in the bucket. and, you know, i think that a lot of these places too are not huge -- they're part of an ecosystem in their area that brings, you know, on any night between all of our venues, you know, over 10,000 people into different areas to spend money and shop, and some restaurants and all of those kinds of things. so there's the counter aspect and there's a huge financial aspect and if a lot of these places start to go, whole areas could go down with them, you know, because these are the things that draw people into different areas in a way that a single restaurant doesn't do or other places, because there's hundreds of people that are in these different places. so, you know, and, obviously, in san francisco the culture aspect is huge because this city is so much a huge part of the whole culture and defining in the last
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50 years, it's about music and what's coming out of the venues. but we all understand that aspect. and i really appreciate -- like, i'm not here trying to -- i really appreciate everything that is done here. it's just as it goes -- obviously, one point it was going to be a few months and then it went on, and now we're in a weird period where nobody knows what's going on. and there's very little assistance coming. so that's what this -- the forming of this is about to try to keep more the most vulnerable, you know, whoever is the most vulnerable, we'll all try to help and to try to make sure that we'll all get through it. some of us will probably make it through it and certainly, you know, there's some vulnerable and there are some that, you know, there are a few places that i have heard about that are basically on the way out but have not been publicly made known yet. so it's going to start to be a
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real -- you know, really terrible, sore situation if it really starts to go down like a domino. >> can you actually speak a little bit more about that? you said that you have conducted questionnaires and surveys with, i guess, 30 of the venues that are part of this alliance. >> yeah. >> i am just curious in terms of your fundraising strategy, like, what are some of the goals in terms of how much you're trying to raise and offset costs? and, you know, like for what period of time are you trying to create this kind of sustaining strategy? and anecdotally, any of the stories around -- like, what is -- like, imminent in terms of closure and what type of venue is actually really in the red at this point? i think that it would be important to kind of go into detail. because we don't see a lot of these stories covered in the
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media. and i think that, you know, our lawmakers, i think that it's important for them to know anecdotally these stories. and actually just the social and emotional impacts, the toll that it's taking on the business owners and their workforce, and, i mean, i could go on just about the impact of, like, our culture within the city at this point. >> yeah. >> so if you can kind of share a little bit more on that, i'd appreciate that. >> okay. well, originally when we had -- we started and we had around 10 to 15 members, we did a questionnaire, similar thing like this, and when on our original fundraising mission was to try and to raise off the back of that $2 million to try to get these people through a period of about three or four months,
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right? of course, maybe 15 venues. now we're still in the process of that, which is the second process that has been fundraising with private companies and that's where hopefully we're going to receive larger amounts. and get closer to that sort of thing. but now we have more members and we are getting a clearer picture. we actually are in the middle of doing a really comprehensive survey like this, which i don't have the full details of, but i can definitely get to you when it's finished, which it hopefully will be in the next week or so, or a week and a half. but essentially for the ones that are more at risk, you know, it's obviously those obvious factors like the ones where -- if they own the building
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themselves, that's a huge help, obviously. even though they have all of the property tax issues and all of those kinds of things. but the ones where they had no -- no savings really. you know, this is an industry where you really live on the margins anyway, even in the best of times. so a lot of people are breaking even, basically, so when this happened, they didn't have a lot of resourcing there and they have these large rents. and they're probably, you know, some of the smaller ones. but the buildings are still large because they'll have to hold, say, 200 people, that kind of thing. some of those places, you know, they tried to do the honorable thing and hold on to as much staff as possible and look for loans and that kind of thing. there weren't really a lot of loans found. and the reason that we started this in the first place is that what we found was they didn't really fit into a category for getting loans out, the original
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cares act, you know, supposedly could give small loans or whatever. and hardly anyone was receiving anything there. whereas some restaurants and other things were. so for whatever reason -- and also cinemas and yet other venues weren't. and then their only resource became going online and asking for their patrons to give the money to gofundme, so it became all there was. so that raised tiny amounts of money for them and other bits and bobbles. and that wasn't feasible thing to happen. so then as this goes on, you know, we've tried to band together. but the ones that are going potentially going to go under is because when they're looking, you know, looking at however many months now without any income, and then when we come back a limited capacity, that is
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not, you know, really you need to be able to have full venues, at least, two or three nights a week or whatever, to make it work. through the bar sales, and other things. and if you're going to come back at 25% capacity, that's then the metrics. so what you're looking at is like a year before you could come back to breaking even? those are the people who i think that are making decisions now, you know, it's not worth it. and really they're doing it in a way that they're holding off. a lot of them are going into the red themselves just to try to hold on. and they're doing it more for the sort of san francisco community than themselves because they're losing money here. you know, to try and just to hold on and hope that we can get through because no one wants to see this happen. so it's pretty heartbreaking. and that's what we're trying to,
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you know -- you know, to do. and one thing that happened is that we've all come together. we're normally a group of businesses who essentially compete very tooth and nail with each other. so we have come together to try to help each other, because we realize that none of us want to see this happen. we don't want to see -- it's not the ones that are going to survive are happy. great, all of the others are out of business. no, that's not what we want at all. we want this to continue. and we want the more vulnerable aspects and the more vulnerable members of our, you know, alliance to remain standing. and, you know, there are few that i know about. i can't really share that with you because they haven't made it public. but they have essentially made a decision but not announced that they probably won't be able to go forward unless a miracle happens, obviously. but that doesn't seem like it's going to happen.
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but, you know, we are trying to remain as optimistic as possible with our ability to fundraise more than we have been able to do and pull our heads together and work on what we can do to keep them alive. and, obviously, it's everything else. it's all of the musicians, you know, all of the d.j.s and all of the other people related, and all of the sound technicians, and all of these sectors of society that are hard to put together work. a lot of these people work in all of the clubs. sound tec technicians often worn 10 clubs, whatever. you know, different places. and they're not an employee of one. but when you put these people together, thousands and thousands and thousands of people who work within just these, you know, these 20 plus clubs. and that's -- so, yeah.
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but basically, you know, it's a never-ending situation. as you start to pick away at it, there's more and more things, you know, and issues. i mean, it's a system that has really gotten many facets to it and it's been working for decades and decades. so as it falls apart like this, you realize how much of it there is. >> i want to thank you. and it's heartbreaking. (please stand by)ar
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. >> this is going to go on for a little while longer. thank you. >> clerk: thank you. other commissioners, anybody have any comments, questions? all right. so fred, i can't thank you enough. this has been real sobering, and it's really hard for me to hear, but it's something we need to know, and i appreciate how eloquently we stated things. i have a couple of points, and one is on the d.p.h. front. you know, it seems to me that san francisco is a place that
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has what economists would describe as a high level of social trust, and that's the faith in other humans and in institutions, and i think that's part of the reason that i'm so proud of this city and part of the reason that i live here is because i do have faith in government, and i do believe that it can help people, and i think there's a failure right now, and -- on the communication side from the department of public health. i think that they have a lot on their plate, and it's a tough job that they're doing. but we in this city, we trust our government, we trust our fellow officials, and when they shutdown large sectors of society, they owe us more of an explanation and they owe us more of a communication.
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there's 3,000 people in dolores park. why can't 30 people gather in front of somebody who's not singing? it baffles me, and if there's a reason, i want to hear it. i bend towards trust. i'm really open to hearing the explanation, but while we are seeing beloved sectors like independent music venues eventually destroyed by our government's actions and told that we can't open and that there's no safeway for you to open, it -- it just -- it kind of -- it confounds my mind. i don't understand how those two things exist, and i know their job is hard right now, and i know that i'm happy i do not have their job, but they owe us more than this, and i would ask them to please help,
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please help explain this or find a way for -- preferably for this to be done safely and trust us to -- trust us like we trust them, essentially. so that's one side of it, and that kind of heats me up. the other thing that i'm hearing is that you guys need help now, and you need help in the long-term. is that a safe thing to say, fred? like, right now, you need some emergency help, whether it's the ability to operate outdoors or cold, hard cash. but it wasn't like things were hunky-dory before for your industry, right? >> yeah, that's true. i'm not going to ask you right now to list out things, but i would ask you to think in your group to come up with ways that maybe the city of san francisco can support small, independent venues going forward. and i do think that you are cultural gems.
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i do think that you offer more to our society than an average small business, and i don't say that loosely. i have average small businesses, and i don't think that i contribute as much as you do to the fabric of our city culturally, and so, you know, i would hope that we can come up with a list that you can list that we can help address the issues that you're facing. you may not have the entire list in front of you, but can you name as many of the 20 venues as you can? >> yeah, yeah. >> i think it's worth saying their names because i want to here exactly as what we are
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at -- exactly what we are at risk of losing. >> okay. so our member list as it stands, although it's growing all the time, is -- includes 1015 folsom, bottom of the hill, d.n.a., chapel, el rio, drone bar, makeout bar, neck of the woods. pillow fight, the rip tide, the s.f. eagle, the great northern, and the lost church. >> thank you. all right. and with that, you know, i also -- oh, i'm also inspired by the previous comments from the public comment and i'm inspired by you, and i'm hoping that the rest of the
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commissioners can also feel the gravity of this situation. i think we need to do as much as possible, as we possibly can do, and i just want to state that on the possible record here. and with that, thank you, fred, very much. i want to open this to public comment, and hopefully analyst rice can help us with that. >> thank you. >> there are no people waiting in public comment. i can just do a shared screen slide for a little bit as a reminder on how people can do that. someone has their hand raised, a caller.
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all right. caller, please unmute yourself and state your name if you're there. >> all right. so they're -- [inaudible] >> okay. that caller, there may be a problem or maybe they're listening to the radio when they're calling, and it's regurgitating the sound and creating an endless loop. maybe give them a chance to mute, one chance before they speak.
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sounds like a typical radio call-in issue there. >> okay. the person just hung up, so -- >> okay. and then, is there a -- okay. all right. yakichi, are you there? >> yes. can you hear me? >> yes. >> all right. thank you for giving us a place to speak. i think we all said similar things. i just wanted to highlight that performance is a mental health for all of us, not only those of us who make it, but those of us who see it.
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i think just to have a chance to let it all go. i personally did a little tiny series that i was producing by the water's edge this past sunday, and i just did one of my dances, and i was so moved by how many people felt it necessary to talk and engage with this teeny weenie weenie piece of art. if we think a little bit ahead and give artists a little bit of space to start creating, i think we will bear much fruit. i think about kids during this
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time. it would be great to create events and keep their minds creative during this time. i can honestly say that it's a gift to be able to do this, and so i'm hoping with all the other things that they're losing contact with this summer, that life performance would not be one of them. i would say humble. chrissy field is a great location, water's edge. there's lots of parks and recs events. the palace of fine arts, fort mason, those are all places. so if we can get a buy-in to do everything we can to make sure they're safe, it would be incredible for our city. >> thank you. >> thank you so much. thank you.
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>> okay. i'm going to close public comment for this agenda item, and thank you so much, fred, for doing that. really appreciate it. the next agenda item is item 5, hearing and possible action regarding applications for permits under the jurisdiction of the entertainment commission, and i'm going to ask director azevedo to introduce the items. i want to say thank you very much for your patience, and i hope you still want to get your permits. >> thank you very much, president bleiman and commissioners. the first permit on the agenda is a permit for live performance for recovery room. recovery room was slated to
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come before the commission in march, but it was delayed due to covid. recovery room is a bar and restaurant and is normally open seven days per week and serves american cuisine. they are seeking an l.l.p. permit to have live bands and other performances until 10:00 p.m. included in your binder are signatures in support from recovery room patrons. initially, when i sent you the packet, i indicated there was no opposition. however, there was opposition submitted by t submitted. the building owner said they were not in opposition to this permit, but they would require us to require sound proofing installation? i did let the property owner know that the commission cannot require sound proofing, but we would set a sound limit, and the proper owner did not write
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me back. i just wanted to make you aware of that. it's not exactly opposition, but i wanted to share. here to talk to you tonight is the manager, jay. >> hello. can you hear me? >> hello, we can hear you. >> thank you so much for taking this time out to speak to me. >> you're on mute.
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i can see your mouth moving. >> let's see... >> we can hear you now. >> okay. i'm not sure how to start, but thank you guys for having me, and thank you for the consideration, and i don't know what else to say. how do i move forward? president bleiman, how do i start? >> i know recovery room, you took over a few years ago. it used to be an irish bar. >> yes, sir. >> you guys want to do some entertainment, i believe, right, with this permit? >> yes, yes, sir. >> why don't you explain to us exactly what you want to do with this entertainment, how do you think it's going to bring your traffic to your business, and tell the rest of the
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commissioners what it's going to be like. i've been there a few times. it's a fun bar. >> thank you, commissioner. it's actually a request from most of my patrons to have just some jazz, just some light music during the day just to keep the place a little livelier, just to add to the neighborhood, just to add to the old school feel of the excelsior itself, and that's what i am -- that's exactly what i'm planning to have. just maybe -- i'm not planning to have it every single day. that would just be a little too much on my end to manage. i would plan to have maybe two to three, maximum four days a week, artists from the neighborhood, artists from neighboring neighborhood. i've spoken to people from
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hunters point, soul artists from hunters point, out speaking to soul artists from the sunnydale projects. i've spoken to local artists in the excelsior, and i think i'm planning to have a poetry night, as well, an open mic, and i just want to have recovery room to be a place where people can go and express their art without having to perform in such a huge venue, to the people who know and actually care about what they're doing. >> so obviously, d.j.s, whatnot -- it is kind of a small place. you do have security in the front, though, right? you do serve food. yours is a 48 license? >> yes. >> you don't really have to, but you do serve a lot of food, you know, i remember. >> yes, sir. yes, we do. >> but it requires you have to be 21 and over, so you do have
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a security guard checking i.d.s when you have these performances because you're going to be drawing a lot of extra people, so there might be a little bit of crowd control, things like that. >> absolutely. >> that needs to be handled. >> absolutely. >> do you have that now? >> yes, i do. i have in-house security, and i have guard card. >> yeah. it's not much to talk about. it's a pretty cool place, but right now, there's not much entertainment out in the excelsior, correct? >> right, there's none. >> i think there was one comp that, unfortunately, we had to, years ago, kind of dismiss. >> i believe it was tapatio's. >> yeah. we want to get a little more action in your neighborhood. i know that the restaurant next door to you kind of shutdown their operations and just does
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catering because, really, there's not a lot of traffic. >> correct. >> we're hoping this entertainment permit will help not just your business but the whole neighborhood. >> yeah. so i'm actually working closely with bob barnwell from, i believe, excelsior action group, and i believe he works with sunday streets? >> okay. >> so, yeah, we're in a lot of conversations in how to improve the neighborhood, how to make sunday street better, how just -- how to -- how just to draw more people to come to the neighborhood and how to keep the people in the neighborhood, as well, in terms of entertaining. >> all right. so the understand the limited live is only to a certain time, and no -- because -- i guess because of your landlord, there'll probably be a sound test. do you have any sound proofing at all in your building? >> not that i'm -- not that i know of. i added my personal soundproof
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in the back room, where we have a tenant that lives upstairs. she's one of our bartenders, and we did it so she can have some sleep on the days that she doesn't work. pete, the previous owner, i believe he did not install any sound proofing in the building prior to us. >> well, it kind of tells you that if you're just having people noise, that she's being disturbed. there's not much layers between the roof and probably the people that live above you, so my suggestion is to work with -- you know, try to work with them because you don't
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want someone to complain to turn your operations off. all right. that's all i have. >> thank you very much, commissioner lee. >> all right. let me get it on gallery here. any other commissioners' comments, questions? commissioner perez? >> hey, jay. thank you so much for coming here. >> how are you? >> i'm doing well. i live in the excelsior, so i really appreciate that you're there and you're trying to provide a place for neighbors to gather? we don't have -- like commissioner lee mentioned, we don't have a lot of entertainment happening in the kpelsor just in anticipati
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kpelsor -- excelsior or any neighbors that might be able to complain, do you have any plan of how you'll handle any potential complaints that might come? >> protocol guidelines for potential -- how would you address it as they come? >> i've actually never had a complaint in terms of noise from any of my neighbors, so that has never really crossed my mind, but we really do -- on nights that we're expecting a large crowd, we do disburse anybody standing in front. we -- that's number one, and we obviously keep to, you know, the amount of people that can come into the bar and also limiting the number of people that can come into the bar, as well, so that's pretty much what i've been doing. >> so the potential they will call you. >> right. >> and say hey, can you keep the noise down? so if that is the case, what
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would be your action? >> i guess keep the noise down. that's the best thing that i can do. >> all right. all right. so you're saying that you will respond to neighbor complaints as soon as you can. >> absolutely. i will be there personally at every single event. >> oh, you will? >> yes, sir. >> okay. and you're only asking for a limited live performance, so i think it needs to end around midnight -- >> 10:00 p.m. >> or 10:00 p.m. all right. good luck, and hopefully, i'll get the chance to come back to your bar again and have a drink. >> thank you, al. i really appreciate it. >> thank you. >> other commissioners? all right. i'm not seeing anything.
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jay, i would just say get a plan in place for your neighbors, get it in place stat. i know it sounds crazy if you haven't had any issues and you're there all the time. i'm a bar owner myself who's had many bars in san francisco. it's good to have a plan in place, and when it comes to sound proofing, i won't get into it here, but i'd be happy to help advise on my experiences with sound proofing, and i think there's some fairly inexpensive ways that can help you out. they're not official from the san francisco entertainment commission, but they're just from my own personal experience. so if that comes up down the line, i would encourage you to reach out to our staff, and they can put you in touch with me, and i can give you a sense of what we've done. we've had 11 bars in san francisco, and there's very,
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very expensive ways that don't work, and there's other ways that do work. it's a very complicated thing, hiring people that tells you what's up. i'm happy to lend my help to that because i want you to be successful. >> thank you, president. >> and i would do a little more on the neighborhood outreach thing. i would just do everything i can to meet people, especially residents, not businesses who live near you so you can address issues as they come up. if you do have an entertainment permit, they may come up, and hopefully when and if -- hopefully if -- you do come before us with issues, it's really helpful for us to know you've done that. okay? >> yes, sir. >> on that, i will have public comment now. >> there's currently nobody waiting for public comment.
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actually, yes, there is. we just got a hand raised for magic zoom room. all right. magic zoom room, please state your name and your two minutes. >> hi. my name is steven bird. i'm a resident in the mission terrace neighborhood, and i want to express my support for the permitting of the recovery room for live performances? this part of the city i think is often sort of overlooked, and venues for arts and culture are limited in comparison to other parts of the city. i think granting this permit to the recovery room would enrich the cultural landscape of the southern part of san francisco. thank you. >> thank you. all right. we have another hand raised, nkechi neuberg.
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>> hi, everybody. i just want to say thank you for this commission. i'm learning a lot about people that i do actually have a chance to engage with with my art. i think i just wanted to reemphasize that my bid is for opening up areas and spaces that may not have been considered entertainment venues, so just taking some of our open park spaces, even ones that don't have stages, that there could be little alcoves. we're really good at scouting places for art, and i can see we'd have staggered events going on in a park throughout a beautiful day. we really appreciate the art when we see it, but a lot of deep reflection and just kind of analyzing of present context that goes in before those shows
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are brought forward. it's an inner journey as an outer journey, and our whole goal in making art is to make empathy something that people experience. usually, when people are watching art, especially performative art, there's a chance to engage in more empathy. i believe part of people's well-being is to see empathy modelled, and they can take that empathy back into their lives and have a shift. it's not always a physical shift, but sometimes a spiritual and mental shift, and there's conversations that they continue after in their own homes. i live in the marina, and my hope is we start to include some of those spaces as nontraditional performing art spaces, letting tradition art
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practicers start to utilize the street at times practicing all the safety measures, and we're very much into making it as safe as we can. we just appreciate what you guys are already doing. i just want to say more, i just want to see -- with no training, but with a really good practice all the way to those that are already -- >> okay. sorry. you're at time. >> thank you so much. thank you. >> thank you. all right. there's nobody else with the hand raised for public comment, and there are no chat comments, either. >> thank you. we will close public comment for this agenda item, and we will ask for motions. oh, one moment. so jay, you had a chance to
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read the good neighbor policy? >> yes, sir. >> okay. so you know to follow that, you should be in good shape. but on there, there's a lot of helping hints for you to engage your neighbors and what to do about them if they start complaining, so please follow that. but with that in mind, i propose to grant this permit with the condition -- with the good neighborhood policy. obviously, it's a limited live and with the sound test, so they can determine their sound levels so they don't disturb the neighbors upstairs. >> commissioner lee, i just want to make mention that there was staff recommendation provision. ingleside station did provide us a p.d. recommendation. >> okay. one second. >> so the -- i can read those for you. >> go ahead. >> approval of the good
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neighbor policy and notifying via e-mail the ingleside entertainment officer and permits for situational awareness. >> okay. with those conditions, i approve this permit. >> i second your motion to approve with the staff conditions. >> okay. >> yep? [roll call]
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>> congratulations, your permit has been approved. follow up with our staff at your earliest convenience. >> thank you very much for taking your time out. >> all right. and i believe we have one more permit on the agenda. >> all right. the final permit on the agenda tonight is for a place of entertainment major amendment to add outdoor entertainment at somarts center. so somarts has held a p.o.e. permit for many years. entertainment commission staff has not yet set an outdoor sound limit, but when
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programming is scheduled in the future, we will. somarts staff conducted outreach to 12 businesses and residential buildings in the immediately area. you will see the letter they shared and the method in which they delivered. southern station approved the permit with the two standard conditions listed here below. here to talk to you tonight is alex and devon. >> hi. i'm alex. i have to apologize devon. he was calling in around granville when he got evacuated for a forest fire. i'll be speaking on his behalf tonight. he was at half the meeting. i'm have somarts cultural center, and we've been around in this location for about 41 years, maybe 42. we've had our occupancy,
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entertainment, and late night permits since 2001, when around the commission was formed. we are a nonprofit arts space in a city owned building. we do not hold in-house alcohol or a food permits. we do single-use nonprofit food permitting as needed. so we do our own internal food, and most of our most events are receptions, galas. as kaitlyn mentioned we filed for fundraisers.
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[inaudible]. >> i'm going to share my screen really quickly, and -- i'm going to show you the area, but
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basically, we have a small outdoor parking lot area, and since covid is in full swing, we want to be able to activate it legitimately, with amplified sound. we often have crowds gather out there, but we want to make using amplified sound official. >> are you requesting access or are you able to do it? oh, there you go. >> so this is us right here, if you can see my cursor. this little spot here is where we're proposing, kind of like right around this area is where we're proposing having amplified sound. there's a big freeway here, and these are the condominiums here, which are the only neighborhood residential tenants. here is a mercedes dealership. this is their parking lot, under the freeway. this is the shopping center
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that houses a trader joe's, and bed bath & beyond. here's a public working lot, and here and here are airbnb's facilities, former adobe building, and yeah, that's sort of the lay of the neighborhood there. we did do a d.b. test at about 8:00 p.m., and right here on the corner outside the condominiums, with our sound system at full volume, we went up, oh, roughly 2 d.b. from -- or actually more like one and change to 67.9 ambient to 69.1 average with our sound system on. when a car passed by on the street, it bumped up roughly,
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on average, to 72 d.b.s, so cars passing were louder than our sound actually carried. if you stand over here, we did a reading from the mercedes parking lot entrance, and the sound here, it was a little bit louder closer to the lot, but not significantly. so yeah, that's kind of the idea. >> okay, thank you. let's start with any commissioners' questions, comments. >> i mean, i knowso somarts is right by the freeway. the freeway has to be louder than any of you ever imagine. some of -- if you ever have
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d.j.s that might be a little bit loud, maybe you might get a few calls from the mercedes dealerships, so have their phone numbers. i've been to a few of their shows, and they're great. >> i'm not seeing anything. i don't have anything more to add. sounds like you have a pretty good plan, and a long track record. just stay in touch with us, and we will make sure that we're aligned on this. again, i don't have anything serious to bring up. let's open things up to public comment. >> we have nkechi neuberg waiting to speak. >> may i please ask people to limit their public comment to
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the agenda item at hand? >> all right. so i have -- you're unmuted, nkechi. >> to be clear, specifically, the agenda item, to be clear, is about basically opening up in public spaces for our art. >> this agenda item is to have the entertainment commission consider granting a major amendment to a place of entertainment permit to allow them to use outdoor amplified sound and entertainment on an ongoing basis, so essentially expanding their premises. >> yeah. so yeah, i think i'll just agree with that, and i would just say to bump it earlier on whatever plan, so we don't get bumped down, move from stage four, be more part of the present stages that are going
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on right now, and -- yeah, and just say that, you know, this is just the beginning for us because more will be revealed based on all the creativity that will be generated specifically for this purpose, so that's my encouragement. that we get to rehearse, start off in very small environments, places that are similar to the san francisco arts festival. so that's my reminder. we are the ones making art for 21 and 22, so we've got to get some things started now, so we have projects for 21 and 22. that's it. thanks. >> thank you. all right. there is nobody else with their hand raised for public comment, and there are no chats comments, either. >> all right.
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we're going to close public comment for that. >> president bleiman, should i go ahead and read the staff recommendations? >> that would be very helpful, thank you. >> okay. i'll go ahead and do that now. so the staff recommendation is approval with the good neighbor policy and recommendations conditions. one, promoter will be responsible for the patrons on the inside and outside of the venue. two, notify the southern station's permit officer, supervisors, of their calendar of events where amplified sound events will occur between 10:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m. >> we need a motion to approve this motion. >> i'll raise a motion to approve with the proposed conditions from staff. >> i second.
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[roll call] >> all right. congratulations, alex. your permit's been approved, and we appreciate you coming in. please follow with our staff at your earliest convenience for next steps, and thank you. >> yeah, thank you. appreciate your support. >> good luck. >> thanks so much. >> all right. i think we're getting to a close here. the final agenda item is number 6, which is commissioners' questions and comments. anybody -- oh, commissioner thomas? >> i'd like to ask that we agendize a report from the
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queer night life fund life fun commission. they just agendized a two-hour session headed by honey mahogany, and they wrote a report of what came out of it. i think just with the independent venue presentation today, it would be great to sort of hear what's going on with the state of our great nightlife, to hear some of the recommendations, so i'd love to figure out how to put them on a future agenda to present their findings and just give us a bit of an update around the state of our nightlife. >> i'm happy to do that. i'll reach out to them. >> thank you. >> i have a question for laura. >> yeah.
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>> since you do a lot of state stuff for health, is there anybody up there in state of california, the state health department, that we can find out, you know, how can we start making some protocols that they might approve to help these venues, you know? whether we just, without entertainment, let them open up as bars and let them have, you know, social distancing inside or, you know, something? i mean, there's got to be -- we might be another six months before we even get to go inside, and we can't just be -- you know, and it's really -- they're holding all the cards, right? >> yeah. i mean, it's a combination of both the state and the county, and obviously, this is kind of uncharted territory for everyone, right? like, they've never been asked to come up with these kinds of protocols or decisions. and i don't even know necessarily what, you know the
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research is that that's out there that you would base this on, but i'm going to try to follow up with maggie tomorrow, and i'm also wondering if some of the different sort of national networks of entertainment groups and socialable city types were -- are looking -- [inaudible]. >> to reopenen venue safely that came out, yeah. there are things out there. [inaudible] >> sorry. >> no, i just feel like, in my experience, the d.p.h. staff are working super, super hard on a whole bunch of stuff that, you know, they -- even though they plan for these kinds of things, they don't necessarily
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have experience in managing a public health emergency like they currently are? so people, you know, are being pulled out of their regular jobs to work on other stuff, and they're stretched really thin, and i don't think there's anyone there who particularly has expertise in, you know, sort of viral spread through singing or brass instruments, so i think we may need to find some of that expertise to help them with developing these protocols. i think we can do that, but i think -- >> i just saw on the news earlier, one state just opened their bowling alleys, so that's an interesting sign, you know, if they're opening their bowling alleys, at least that's one step, but i don't know how long that's going to last, right? >> yeah. >> which state, steven? >> it was on the with the --
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the department of public health. and again, i think just -- which how hard
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you all work. thank you. >> thank you, nola. all right. nkechi, let's try again. >> wait. did she post via the chat? >> yeah. >> i'm just sending it. >> sorry. so you only get one comment. it's either chat or public, and we've already read your chat comment, but we appreciate it, but we can't do two.
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it's the law. >> i appreciate it, yeah. it's new to me, so -- >> yeah. it's complicated, but it's there for fairness. senior analyst, are there any other comments? >> there are none. >> all right. with that, we will adjourn this meeting at 7:52 p.m. i believe the next meeting, we're going to have a lot to do. >> thank you. >> everybody stay safe. >> thank you. >> bye, commissioners.
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>> president yee: good afternoon and welcome to the august 18, 2020 meeting of the san francisco board of supervisors. madam clerk, can you please call the roll. >> clerk: thank you, mr. president. [roll call]


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