Jan 2, 2024 - News

5 key issues to track in San Francisco this year

Photo of the San Francisco skyline

The downtown skyline of San Francisco as seen on Nov. 3. Photo: Loren Elliott/Bloomberg via Getty Images

It's 2024, and as we head into a pivotal election year, here are five things to keep on your radar.

Driving the news: The tech industry is seeing gains amid Silicon Valley's AI boom, yet the wealth gap seems as wide as ever with the Bay Area's continued struggles with homelessness and drug abuse.

2024 ballot

  • City Hall could change dramatically after this year's elections, which will determine our next mayor, district attorney, sheriff, city attorney and treasurer.
  • Voters also will weigh in on ballot measures, including one that would expand police powers. Others would require mandatory drug screenings to receive welfare benefits and determine whether voting in supervisors' races should be open to all voters regardless of their district.

Housing

  • Home prices in the Bay Area are expected to drop in 2024, with Zillow forecasting a 4.8% decrease in San Francisco.
  • Meanwhile, the city's Planning Department is set to propose zoning changes that would enable significantly denser development in select neighborhoods primarily on the city's west side, according to a draft map in a December newsletter to constituents from District 1 Supervisor Connie Chan.
  • That could mean construction of buildings that stand over 80 feet in areas where the cap is currently 40 feet, the San Francisco Examiner notes.
  • The city's dispute over its ability to clear homeless encampments will also continue to play out in court — Gov. Gavin Newsom has already called on the U.S. Supreme Court to take up the case.

Affirmative action

Downtown recovery

Reparations

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