Politics of San Francisco

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Politics of San Francisco

Post  kosovohp on Fri Oct 08, 2010 4:07 am

San Francisco—officially known as the City and County of San Francisco—is a consolidated city-county, a status it has held since 1856.[125] It is the only such consolidation in California.[11] The mayor is also the county executive, and the county Board of Supervisors acts as the city council. Under the city charter, the government of San Francisco is constituted of two co-equal branches. The executive branch is headed by the mayor and includes other citywide elected and appointed officials as well as the civil service. The 11-member Board of Supervisors, the legislative branch, is headed by a president and is responsible for passing laws and budgets, though San Franciscans also make use of direct ballot initiatives to pass legislation.
San Francisco City Hall

The members of the Board of Supervisors are elected as representatives of specific districts within the city.[126] Upon the death or resignation of mayor, the President of the Board of Supervisors assumes that office, as did Dianne Feinstein after the assassination of George Moscone in 1978.

Because of its unique city-county status, local government exercises jurisdiction over property that would otherwise be located outside of its corporation limit. San Francisco International Airport, though located in San Mateo County, is owned and operated by the City and County of San Francisco. San Francisco also has a county jail complex located in San Mateo County, in an unincoporated area adjacent to San Bruno. San Francisco was also granted a perpetual leasehold over the Hetch Hetchy Valley and watershed in Yosemite National Park by the Raker Act in 1913.[11]

The municipal budget for fiscal year 2007–2008 was just over $6 billion.[127]

San Francisco serves as the regional hub for many arms of the federal bureaucracy, including the U.S. Court of Appeals, the Federal Reserve Bank, and the U.S. Mint. Until decommissioning in the early 1990s, the city had major military installations at the Presidio, Treasure Island, and Hunters Point—a legacy still reflected in the annual celebration of Fleet Week. The State of California uses San Francisco as the home of the state supreme court and other state agencies. Foreign governments maintain more than seventy consulates in San Francisco.[128]
[edit] Demographics
Population by year[129][130]

The estimated population of San Francisco in the year 2009 was 815,358, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.[9] Separately, the California Department of Finance estimated the population at 856,095, as of January 1, 2010.[131] With over 17,000 people per square mile, San Francisco is the second-most densely populated major American city (among cities greater than 200,000 population).[13] San Francisco is the traditional focal point of the San Francisco Bay Area and forms part of the San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont Metropolitan Statistical Area and the greater San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland Combined Statistical Area (CSA) whose population is over seven million, making it the fifth largest in the United States as of the 2000 Census.[132]

Like many larger U.S. cities, San Francisco is a minority-majority city, as non-Hispanic whites comprise less than half of the population. The 2006–2008 American Community Survey estimated that 45.1% of the population was made up of non-Hispanic whites.[133] Asians of any nationality make up 31.3% of the population with those of Chinese birth or descent constituting the largest single ethnic group in San Francisco at about one-fifth of the population. Hispanics of any race make up 14.0% of the population. San Francisco's African American population has declined in recent decades, from 13.4% in 1970 to 7.3%.[133] The current percentage of African Americans in San Francisco is similar to that of the state of California;[133] conversely, the city's percentage of Hispanic residents is less than half of that of the state. Native San Franciscans form a relatively small percentage of the city's population: only 37.7% of its residents were born in California, while 25.2% were born in a different U.S. state. More than a third of city residents (35.6%) were born outside the United States.

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