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News Briefs: Supes set to vote on Milk airport terminal naming

by Cynthia Laird

A rendering of the facade of Terminal 1 of San Francisco International Airport. Photo: Courtesy Gensler, Kuth Ranieri
A rendering of the facade of Terminal 1 of San Francisco International Airport. Photo: Courtesy Gensler, Kuth Ranieri  

A San Francisco Board of Supervisors committee is set to hold a hearing in March on naming a terminal at the city's airport after slain gay rights leader Harvey Milk.

The Bay Area Reporter has learned that the supervisors' budget and finance committee will take up the proposal Thursday, March 22. Should it be approved, the full board would vote on the naming idea at its April 3 meeting.

The hearing will come eight months after District 9 Supervisor Hillary Ronen introduced the legislation to name Terminal 1 at San Francisco International Airport after Milk. District 8 Supervisor Jeff Sheehy, the board's lone gay member and co-sponsor of the legislation, has also called for renaming the airport's access road in honor of Milk.

Forty years ago Milk was sworn in as a city supervisor, becoming the first out LGBT individual to hold elective office in both San Francisco and California. Eleven months later, on the morning of November 27, 1978, Milk and then-mayor George Moscone were assassinated inside City Hall by disgruntled former supervisor Dan White.

In 2013 Ronen's former boss and predecessor, gay Supervisor David Campos, had proposed naming the entire airport after Milk, who is now a global LGBT icon. Due to a lack of support, Campos worked out a deal with the late mayor Ed Lee to instead name one of the airport's four terminals in honor of Milk.

Delays by Lee in naming his appointees to an advisory panel tasked with selecting which terminal should bear Milk's name postponed it from meeting until last year. In June the panel chose Terminal 1, which is undergoing a $2.4 billion remodel that will be unveiled in stages through 2024. Panel members reasoned the project would draw years of media coverage and help publicize it being named the Harvey Milk Terminal.

Airport commission President Larry Mazzola has been a vocal opponent of the idea. He has pointed to a policy his board created that says areas of SFO should only be named for people with a direct connection to the airport. Left unsaid, but implied by Mazzola, is that Milk did not.

In a recent interview, Ronen told the B.A.R. that the hold up in scheduling the board hearing had nothing to do with politics. She said the reason for the delay was due to the board's heavy workload in the fall.

Ronen expressed confidence in the naming idea being approved by the supervisors. Should it reach his desk, interim Mayor Mark Farrell could sign the legislation prior to this year's commemoration of Harvey Milk Day. A state day of special significance, it is observed in California every May 22, Milk's birthday.

Tickets available for mayoral forum
Horizons Foundation has set up ticketing for the mayoral forum it is co-sponsoring with the Bay Area Reporter and KQED.

The March 19 event takes place from 7:30 to 9 p.m. at the Castro Theatre, 429 Castro Street.

The event is free, but tickets are required and can be obtained by visiting http://bit.ly/2FTiuf9.

People can also submit questions at mailto:questions@horizonsfoundation.org.

Confirmed participating candidates are Angela Alioto, London Breed, Richie Greenberg, Jane Kim, and Mark Leno.

KQED's Scott Shafer will moderate.

LGBT asylum drop-in project
The LGBT Asylum Project and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation have partnered to provide a monthly drop-in service for LGBTs seeking information about asylum-related services.

The drop-in clinics begin Saturday, February 10, from 1 to 3 p.m. at Strut, the AIDS foundation's men's health center, 470 Castro Street. Thereafter, the clinics will be held at Strut the second Saturday of the month at the same time.

According to a Facebook announcement, people who may think they qualify for asylum can stop by for a free legal consultation and to learn more about the asylum process.

The LGBT Asylum Project provides free legal services to LGBT people seeking asylum in the U.S. For more information, visit www.lgbtasylumproject.org or email info@lgbtasylumproject.org.

Meet Oakland mayor at LGBTQ center
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, who has been "bringing the mayor's office to the people" at locations around the city, will be outside of the LGBTQ Community Center, 3207 Lakeshore Avenue, Saturday, February 10, from noon to 3 p.m.

For the past several months Schaaf has brought a desk and city staffers to different neighborhoods in an effort to hear directly from Oakland residents. During the afternoon, people can apply for a library card or pay a traffic ticket, in addition to asking questions of the mayor and her staff.

For more information, as well as other activities taking place at the center, visit http://www.oaklandlgbtqcenter.org.

API LGBT groups to get grants
The Red Envelope Giving Circle will have a community reception in celebration of its nine grantees that support and improve the lives of Asian and Pacific Islander LGBTQs Sunday, February 11, from 4:30 to 7 p.m. at the GLBT History Museum, 4127 18th Street in San Francisco.

The Red Envelope Giving Circle creates positive social change in the greater Bay Area through philanthropic support for queer API people and communities.

This year's recipients are: An Intergenerational Feast of Resistance by QTViet Cafe, an event that brings together different generations of Vietnamese Americans through cooking and performance; "Rooted," a docu-series by the Asian Prisoner Support Committee that follows the lives of three formerly incarcerated queer and trans API women; and Hunnies and Hot Sauce, a community space for queer, trans, genderqueer, and nonbinary folks.

Other grantees are Gender Sexuality and Diversities Program's Gender Justice Youth Exchange; Historically Queer Digital Project; San Jose State University's Queer and Asian retreat; API Equality Northern California's Trans Rights and Empowerment Day; Trikone and Asian Pacific Islander Queer Women Transgender Community's mind body workshop; and Reclaiming the Sacred Workshop series that celebrates healing through lei-making.

The Horizons Foundation and Asian American Pacific Islanders in philanthropy are community sponsors for the event.

Those interested in attending should RSVP to http://bit.ly/2E9Otdt.

GGNRA to hold meeting on North Ocean Beach
The Golden Gate National Recreation Area will hold a public meeting on North Ocean Beach Tuesday, February 20, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. at the Cliff House Terrace Room, 1090 Point Lobos in San Francisco.

The meeting is being held to discuss park programs and management of North Ocean Beach. GGNRA officials will be reporting on the 2017 beach fire and beach patrol season, stewardship efforts, ongoing maintenance, and other issues.

GGNRA also announced that the fire season begins March 1, with recreational beach fires being permitted until October 31. For more information, visit http://bit.ly/2s38PR4.

RCC crab feed
The Rainbow Community Center of Contra Costa County will hold its 12th annual crab feed benefit Saturday, February 24, from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Pleasant Hill Senior Center, 233 Gregory Lane.

People will enjoy crab, pasta, salad, and dessert. The evening will also showcase fun raffle and auction items.

Tickets are $60 before Valentine's Day and proceeds benefit RCC and its programs.

For tickets and more information, visit http://conta.cc/2DIkmHp.

Grace Cathedral's Carnivale gala
Grace Cathedral will hold its Carnivale gala Tuesday, February 13, beginning at 6 p.m. at 1100 California Street. This year's theme is "All You Need is Love."

The gala will see the neo-Gothic cathedral transformed into an elegant and festive venue for this annual fundraiser. There will be a cocktail reception, seated dinner, live auction, and a performance by jazz singer Paula West. Proceeds benefit Grace Cathedral's mission of compassion, inclusivity, creativity, and learning.

Organizers said that this year, there will be a tier of half-priced ticketing for young professionals (under 35). Regular tickets are $250.

For tickets and more information, visit https://www.gracecathedral.org/events/carnivale/.

Matthew S. Bajko contributed reporting.

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