City Administrator's September 2022 newsletter

City Administrator Carmen Chu, City leaders, and newly naturalized citizens gathered for a Citizenship Month celebration at City Hall.

Celebrating Citizenship Month! 

September is National Citizenship Month! Free resources are available to help eligible green card holders apply for citizenship. The Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs (OCEIA), in partnership with community organizations, helps eligible individuals navigate the process of applying for citizenship through the San Francisco Pathways to Citizenship Initiative. Since its inception in 2013, the Pathways Initiative has helped over 10,000 people become US citizens. 

Interested in starting your pathway to citizenship? Make an appointment for an upcoming free citizenship workshop by calling 415-662-8901 and leaving a message. Or sign up to receive information about volunteer opportunities with Pathways here

People waving mini American flags hold up a banner reading "Get free, trusted help with your citizenship application" and a sign that says "Proud to be an American!"

News from City Hall

New COVID-19 Boosters Now Available

New COVID-19 booster vaccines are now available that are more effective against current COVID-19 variants. You are eligible for the new booster if you are 12 or older and you’ve completed the primary two dose series—whether or not you’ve had prior boosters—as long as it has been at least two months after your most recent dose. Get your free booster now by contacting your doctor or visiting a nearby pharmacy or vaccine site


San Francisco activates heat mapping effort to aid planning and preparation for heat waves

This month, San Francisco activated a heat mapping effort, called SF Urban Heat Watch, to better understand how heat gets distributed across the City during heat waves. The project will inform the City's efforts to address health inequities caused by extreme heat as climate change continues to make heat waves more severe and more frequent.

On September 2, volunteers affixed heat sensors to their cars and drove around the City collecting detailed heat and humidity data. Now, the data is being used to create heat maps that will help City departments understand how factors of our built environment, such as green space, tree canopy, and buildings, can help reduce, rather than worsen, health inequities caused by heat and make smart decisions about where to plant more trees, stand up cooling centers, and more. Learn more about the effort here.


New PulsePoint Mobile App Launches to Help Save Lives

The Department of Emergency Management recently launched the PulsePoint mobile app to support emergency responders to save lives threatened by cardiac arrest. The new 9-1-1-connected app notifies app users when CPR is needed by someone nearby and provides the location of the nearest Automated External Defibrillator (AED) machine, enabling bystanders to render critical aid until emergency responders arrive. Learn how you can help save lives with the PulsePoint app in the video here.

If you are willing and able to administer CPR to persons experiencing cardiac arrest, download the PulsePoint app for free today


Resources for Small Businesses and Nonprofits

Important Updates for Businesses with Shared Spaces and JAM Permits

Pandemic Shared Spaces permits and JAM permits are expiring on March 31, 2023. To continue using your Shared Spaces location, you must apply for a new “legislated” Shared Spaces permit as soon as possible, but no later than November 1, 2022. Once approved, you must apply for a permanent outdoor permit from the Entertainment Commission to continue hosting outdoor entertainment and/or amplified sound on a regular basis. Learn more here. 


Interested in Starting a Small Business? Start Here

Thinking about starting a new business in San Francisco? Take a look at this step-by-step guide from the Office of Small Business to help you figure out where to begin and plan for your business’s success. 

Fees for new small businesses are currently being waived through the Treasurer & Tax Collector’s First Year Free program. Enrollment is automatic when you register as a new business or new location.


Tell Us How Your Business Is Doing

The San Francisco Small Business Commission is conducting a citywide survey of small businesses to help identify ongoing challenges small businesses are facing and measure economic recovery. If your business has 100 employees or less, complete the survey here. The survey closes on October 17.

A line of performers wearing black t-shirts hold a large, colorful dragon over their heads during the Lunar New Year Parade.


Grants for the Arts Awards Over $13 Million to Arts and Cultural Organizations

Grants for the Arts (GFTA) recently announced $13.4 million in grants for 279 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations to support general operating costs, parades, and festivals. Since 1961, GFTA has provided a stable source of funding for San Francisco’s arts and cultural organizations, distributing over $400 million to date. Committed to equity, GFTA’s funding process focuses on supporting nonprofit organizations rooted in and serving diverse populations, including those in communities hit hardest by the pandemic. This year, Black and transgender arts and cultural organizations received 45% more funding compared to last year, and Asian American and Pacific Islander organizations received over 60% more funding over last year. See the full list of grantees here. 


SF Chief Data Officer Named 2022 Leading Data Executive

San Francisco’s Chief Data Officer Michelle Littlefield was recently named one of the 2022 State & Local Leading Data Executives by CDO Magazine. The honor recognizes public sector leaders who have distinguished themselves by pursuing collaborative, data-driven innovations that drive effective governance. As Chief Data Officer, Littlefield leads DataSF, which helps City departments use data to improve operations and delivery of services. Through the Open Data Portal, DataSF makes hundreds of datasets available for public use, strengthening transparency on critical issues such as COVID-19 and housing.

Two individuals wearing neon yellow jackets speak to a shop owner outside of their storefront in Chinatown.

Learn More About Your Government - Spotlight on the Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs (OCEIA)

Promoting the Well-Being and Inclusion of Immigrants

The Office of Civic Engagement and Immigrant Affairs (OCEIA) promotes inclusive policies and assistance programs that lead to the full civic, economic, and linguistic integration of immigrants. OCEIA funds free immigration help, including support with paying immigration application fees, connections to immigration legal services, and assistance with citizenship applications. The Office works to ensure fair access for residents with limited English skills by enforcing the City’s Language Access Ordinance, recognized as the strongest local language law in the nation, and by providing technical assistance, resources, and support to City departments, the Mayor’s Office, and the Board of Supervisors to ensure they provide high quality, culturally competent, multilingual communication. 

OCEIA also supports multilingual community safety for all through the Community Ambassador program. Community Ambassadors, wearing signature bright yellow jackets, provide a visible, non-law enforcement safety presence to engage, inform, and assist community members and visitors. The Ambassadors often live in the neighborhoods they serve and speak multiple languages. Community Ambassadors can walk with you as safety escorts in the Bayview, Chinatown, Haight-Ashbury, Lower Haight, Hayes Valley, Fillmore, Mid-Market, Tenderloin, Mission, Visitacion Valley, and Portola neighborhoods. Just call 311 to request an escort to meet you. 

Last updated September 21, 2022