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Newsom Creates City Team To Help Restaurants Open in SF

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The Gav's office issued a press release on Friday, announcing a new effort to minimize the red tape involved in opening a restaurant in San Francisco. As most of you know, restaurants in SF have been having all manner of issues and its not limited to the Healthy SF surcharge conflict. The permitting process is an unspeakably slow and disjointed buzz kill. And other parts of the Bay Area -- like Oakland -- are offering more stimulus packages to restaurants, prompting industry entrepreneurs to look outside San Francisco proper.

So The City's Office of Economic & Workforce Development (OEWD) has spawned a new team consisting of representatives from the Office of Small Business, Department of Building Inspection, Department of Public Works, Fire Department, Department of Public Health, Planning Department, San Francisco Public Utilities Commission and the Police Department. Representatives from the Municipal Transportation Agency, Department of Environment and the Entertainment Commission will participate when necessary.

Henceforward, the team's major tasks shall be:

·Review restaurant application plans before they're submitted

·Help resolve conflicting inter-departmental permit, code, fee and licensing issues, providing clear permitting instructions and direction to the restaurateur.

·Promote real estate opportunities zoned for restaurant use

·Conduct extensive outreach to ensure that business assistance services are familiar and available to all San Francisco restaurants

·Provide recommendations to better streamline the permitting, regulation and approval process for restaurants

Even though most of the above is a bit nebulous, it's worth noting The City's concerted effort to help the industry. GGRA Executive Director Kevin Westlye is all for it, but obviously we'll have to wait to see how it pans out in measurable terms. The full press release is available here at the SF Biz Times.

· S.F. to make it easier to open eateries [Biz Times]

Food porn at Showdogs. [Photo: Flickr/goodsista]

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