GGRA Requests BART to Immediately Return to Midnight Service

UPDATE: July 1, 2021

Today, BART announced that late-night limited trains will be added from downtown San Francisco July 15-31st and Midnight service will return Monday-Saturday beginning August 2nd.

From July 15 – July 31 on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, BART will run four trains leaving Embarcadero or Civic Center Stations at 11:30 p.m. These trains will serve limited stops after regular BART service ends and are in addition to the special service for A’s night games and the limited service provided for Giants’ night games.

July 15 – July 31 Service Plan:

  • Train 1 – Embarcadero, Civic Center, 16th Street, Daly City
  • Train 2 – Civic Center, Embarcadero, West Oakland, MacArthur, Pleasant Hill
  • Train 3 – Civic Center, Embarcadero, West Oakland, Bay Fair 
  • Train 4 – Civic Center, Embarcadero, West Oakland, MacArthur, El Cerrito Del Norte

Starting on August 2, rather than August 30, service throughout the system will extend to midnight Monday – Saturday. 

Find full details here.

The GGRA has been working to bring this urgent issue to the attention of BART, and we are grateful it resulted in an immediate solution. The conversations that happened and the real desire by the BART Board of Directors, BART staff and BART’s labor partners to quickly find a solution is a testament to how we can solve issues by all working together. This move will make it easier to bring back staff and allow us to reopen more of our restaurants to tourists and residents alike.

Thank you to our partners at the Bay Area Council, SF Travel, The Hotel Council of SF, SF Bar Owners Alliance, California Music and Culture Association, and the American Car Rental Association for your support!

June 29, 2021:

The Golden Gate Restaurant Association (GGRA) has requested BART to immediately return to midnight service. Currently, BART’s last trains depart the end of line at 9pm while midnight service is slated to return August 30.

Ending service early prevents hospitality staff from working evening shifts and returning home via a reliable, affordable transportation option, as well as an operator’s ability to hire those who do not have another way to return home after their shift.

Returning to normal service hours would also allow tourists and Bay Area locals who cannot afford the rideshare prices to return home from evening activities.

BART is an essential public service, and extending its hours to midnight is a crucial step in supporting San Francisco employees, residents, and visitors.

You can read GGRA’s letter of support here. This letter was sent to the BART Board of Directors and was co-signed by:

You can also find the Bay Area Council’s letter of support here

Read More

GGRA Advocates for Permanent Commission Cap on Third-Party Food Delivery Services

San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors voted on Tuesday, June 22nd to make the temporary 15% commission cap on third-party food delivery services permanent.

In order to avoid a gap between the expiration of the current fee cap and the effective date of this legislation, the Board passed the legislation in its current form. There continues to be work to finalize amendments that will allow operators additional flexibility with third-party delivery companies. 

We anticipate these amendments to be formalized July 8th in the Public Safety and Neighborhood Services Committee. The final legislation is expected to include:

  • A permanent 15% commission cap on delivery

  • Allowance for up to a 3% credit card pass through

  • Allowance for separate contracts for services outside of delivery such as marketing, consumer discounts, etc.

You can find GGRA’s Support Letter here. We will continue to provide updates as we learn more.

Read More

Help Us Save Outdoor Dining in SF by Making Shared Spaces Permanent!

San Francisco’s outdoor dining spaces that popped-up during the COVID-19 pandemic were permitted through the city’s Shared Spaces program. We at the Golden Gate Restaurant Association are advocating for this successful outdoor dining and retail program to continue beyond the pandemic. All outdoor dining permits through the Shared Spaces program are set to expire December 31, 2021 or 60 days after the current Emergency Order is terminated. This includes the new dining on sidewalks, along curbsides, in roadways and open lots. 

Your voice matters. San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors and city departments need to hear about the positive impact Shared Spaces has had on our city from residents, small business owners, small business staff members, and small business supporters. If they do not hear enough support from the public, we will no longer have outdoor dining in the capacity we are seeing now. Make your voice heard and show your support! 

On March 12, 2021, Mayor London Breed announced legislation to make the Shared Spaces program permanent in San Francisco. This legislation would make permanent changes to streamline curbside, sidewalk, roadway and other permitting processes for San Francisco businesses and organizations. We strongly support the Mayor’s effort to make this program permanent and are so thankful for the Mayor driving this forward.

This program enables more than 1,700+ restaurants and bars to seat and serve customers outdoors on sidewalks, along curbsides, in roadways and open lots. It is a lifeline for these brick-and-mortar businesses during the pandemic when indoor service is prohibited or greatly reduced. In a recent survey we conducted, over 84% of operators stated continuation of the program is critical to the survival of their restaurant. These outdoor spaces also allow operators to bring back more staff

We now know that it will take years for our local businesses to recover from the economic impact the pandemic brought. Shared Spaces gives them an opportunity to not only survive in the near future, but to also thrive in the long term. The additional sales tax revenue that will come from this program will also be critical for the city of San Francisco.

Shared Spaces activates our streets and brings life back to our city. We’ve seen neighborhoods and commercial corridors embrace the way this program has benefited their communities. Not only will Shared Spaces enhance the resident experience, but it will also encourage tourism for years to come.

Click the drop downs below to learn how you can help:

We’ve partnered with Grow SF and San Francisco Small Business on this initiative.

Here’s how you can support making San Francisco’s Shared Spaces program permanent:

Send a Pre-Written Email to Our City Officials

Emails matter! They are direct and personal. In less than a minute, you can show your support by sending Grow SF’s pre-filled email.

We encourage you to personalize your email and mention the following:

  • Your name, the name of your business and where it is located. 
  • The positive impact Shared Spaces has already had on your business, your staff, and your community. 
  • How Shared Spaces will be needed even after the COVID-19 pandemic emergency order has ended.

If you use Gmail, you can send a pre-filled email here (you will be able  view it and edit it before sending).

If you use another email service, you can copy and paste the information from the  template below into your email or visit Grow SF’s website here to easily send a pre-written email through their webpage.

Grow SF Email Template:

Send To: Board.of.Supervisors@sfgov.org, connie.chan@sfgov.org, catherine.stefani@sfgov.org, aaron.peskin@sfgov.org, gordon.mar@sfgov.org, dean.preston@sfgov.org, matt.haney@sfgov.org, myrna.melgar@sfgov.org, rafael.mandelman@sfgov.org, hillary.ronen@sfgov.org, shamann.walton@sfgov.org, ahsha.safai@sfgov.org

CC: chanstaff@sfgov.org, stefanistaff@sfgov.org, peskinstaff@sfgov.org, marstaff@sfgov.org, prestonstaff@sfgov.org, haneystaff@sfgov.org, melgarstaff@sfgov.org, mandelmanstaff@sfgov.org, ronenstaff@sfgov.org, waltonstaff@sfgov.org, safaistaff@sfgov.org, savesharedspaces@growsf.org, ggra@ggra.org 

Subject: I’m a business owner. Please make Shared Spaces permanent!

Body Text:

Hi,

I am emailing you in support of the Mayor’s legislation to make the Shared Spaces program permanent.

This past year was hard on my business. We are looking forward to reopening for indoor seating soon, but that’s not enough. We need outdoor dining so we can recover some of our losses.

Outdoor dining has given our neighborhoods a new energy, and has transformed our streets into communities.

Let’s not go back. Please make outdoor dining permanent so we can continue to enjoy great food outdoors.

Thank you,

*Sign Your Name*

We’ve partnered with Grow SF and San Francisco Small Business on this initiative.

Here’s how you can support making San Francisco’s Shared Spaces program permanent:

Send a Pre-Written Email to Our City Officials

Emails matter! They are direct and personal. In less than a minute, you can show your support by sending Grow SF’s pre-filled email.

If you use Gmail, you can send a pre-filled email here (you will be able  view it and edit it before sending).

If you use another email service, you can copy and paste the information from the  template below into your email or visit Grow SF’s website here to easily send a pre-written email through their webpage.

Grow SF Email Template:

Send To: Board.of.Supervisors@sfgov.org, MayorLondonBreed@sfgov.org, Connie.Chan@sfgov.org, Catherine.Stefani@sfgov.org, Aaron.Peskin@sfgov.org, Gordon.Mar@sfgov.org, Dean.Preston@sfgov.org, Matt.Haney@sfgov.org, Myrna.Melgar@sfgov.org, Rafael.Mandelman@sfgov.org, Hillary.Ronen@sfgov.org, Shamann.Walton@sfgov.org, Ahsha.Safai@sfgov.org, ggra@ggra.org 

Subject: Please make Shared Spaces permanent!

Body Text:

Dear Mayor Breed and SF Supervisors,

I’m writing to share my support to make the Shared Spaces program permanent in San Francisco. Our small businesses have been severely impacted by the pandemic, with many closing across the city.

Allowing the program to be permanent will help our restaurants and bars get back on their feet, create many jobs, and generate tax revenue for the city. Also, outdoor dining is fun and will help bring tourists back to San Francisco.

We’re lucky to live in a city that has incredible food and incredible weather. Let’s celebrate that by making outdoor dining permanent.

Thank you!

 Thank you to our Community Partners for supporting a permanent Shared Spaces program! 

        

Want to learn more about how you can get involved in GGRA’s advocacy efforts to support our local restaurant community? Please reach out to Chhavi Sahni at chhavi@ggra.org.

Read More

The Heartbeat of the City: San Francisco Restaurants Rise Again

 
During the pandemic, the GGRA has been 100% focused on advocating for our restaurant community. From communicating detailed health directives and closure requirements as clearly as possible to helping restaurants navigate the financial aid options, we’ve been focused on the many details and data. With this video, we shift our focus to share the San Francisco restaurant industry operators’ and chefs’ stories to give them an opportunity to speak directly to what the pandemic has been like for them and to voice where they see things going now. The San Francisco restaurant community is resilient, smart, hopeful, and incredibly inspiring. Enjoy this brief look into their world and please continue to support our restaurants!
 
Learn more about SF Restaurant Week, running through April 18, 2021!
 

Read More

How to Make SF Restaurant Week Work for Your Restaurant

To promote the San Francisco dining scene, we will be bringing back SF Restaurant Week Friday, April 9th – Sunday, April 18th!

Throughout the city, participating restaurants will offer prix-fixe lunch and dinner menus, which can include options for :

  • Takeout

  • Delivery

  • Meal Kits

  • Outdoor Dining

  • Indoor dining (as long as San Francisco allows for indoor dining at the time of the event)

SF Restaurant Week will feature two menu types at six price points:

  • Lunch (2+ courses): $10, $15, $25

  • Dinner (3+ courses): $25, $40, $65

Not sure if the pricing will work for your restaurant or how to get the most out of participating? 

Check out these tips on how to make SF Restaurant Week work for you:

The deadline to register as a participating restaurant is Friday, March 19th. Don’t miss your opportunity to participate!

Registration is free for GGRA Members!

Read More

California Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program

If your business had a yearly gross revenue of $2.5 million or less in 2019, you may be eligible to apply for The State of California’s Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program
 
If you want to apply, you must pick a partner organization to apply through. You can find the list of partners serving San Francisco county applicants here.

If you have any questions, please refer to this FAQ page. You can also register for webinars through Small Business Development Center to learn more about the application process.
 
The amount of grant funding ranges from $5,000 to $25,000, depending on what your revenue was in 2019.  Businesses are eligible based on their annual revenue as documented in their most recent tax return:

Summary of Eligibility Requirements:

A small business or small nonprofit must satisfy the following criteria to be eligible to receive a grant award:

  • Must meet the definition of an “eligible small business” that has yearly gross revenue of $2.5 million or less (but at least $1,000 in yearly gross revenue) based on most recently filed tax return) or (ii) a “small nonprofit” (registered 501(c)(3), 501(c)(19), or 501(c)(6) nonprofit entity having yearly gross revenue of $2.5 million or less (but at least $1,000 in yearly gross revenue) based on most recently filed Form 990)

  • Active businesses or nonprofits operating since at least June 1, 2019

  • Businesses must currently be operating or have a clear plan to re-open once the State of California permits re-opening of the business

  • Business must be impacted by COVID-19 and the health and safety restrictions such as business interruptions or business closures incurred as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic

  • Business must be able to provide organizing documents including 2018 or 2019 tax returns or Form 990s, copy of official filing with the California Secretary of State, if applicable, or local municipality for the business such as one of the following: Articles of Incorporation, Certificate of Organization, Fictitious Name of Registration or Government-Issued Business License

  • Business must be able to provide acceptable form of government-issued photo ID

  • Applicants with multiple business entities, franchises, locations, etc. are not eligible for multiple grants and are only allowed to apply once using their eligible small business with the highest revenue

Read More

Holiday Support for SF Restaurant Families: Christmas Giving Tree

If you are a San Francisco restaurant or hospitality worker that has been impacted by the effects of COVID-19,  you can request to be matched with a San Francisco Secret Santa to provide gifts for your child/children before Christmas. 
 

 

If you are interested in supporting SF Restaurant Families Christmas Giving Tree, you can learn more about donating here.

Read More

Call to Action: Tell San Francisco City Leaders Our Restaurant Industry Needs Help Now!

Restaurant Owners, Operators, & Employees: we need your help!
 
Tell San Francisco City Leaders that the restaurant industry needs help now by sending GGRA’s pre-written email asking our local government to take action by:
  • Immediately providing more financial aid to restaurant workers that have been furloughed/laid off, or lost a significant amount of their income from this ban on outdoor dining.
  • Providing more financial relief for small businesses. We need more financial relief options from the local, state and federal government.
  • Providing businesses with more time to comply with future health orders. A two-day notice is not enough time for our restaurants to pivot or shut down operations without taking a considerable financial loss.
  • Providing clear, digestible criteria for making shutdown decisions. Going forward, there needs to be more accessible data explaining why San Francisco is issuing shutdown decisions for certain activities ahead of the State, like for banning outdoor dining.
Please find the directions and email templates in our latest newsletter here and make your voice heard: https://mailchi.mp/ggra/calltoaction-58746
 
Thank you for support.

Read More

GGRA Signs IRC Letter to Congress

Today, the GGRA joined 183 San Francisco restaurants in signing a letter from the Independent Restaurant Coalition (IRC) urging Congress to pass the RESTAURANTS Act now.

You can find a pdf of the letter here.

Read More