Inside San Francisco - December 26th, 2016

Inside San Francisco (Dec 27th, 2016)

 Tomorrow's forecast will be sunny with a high/low of 59/44 Fahrenheit. On Thursday, expect sunny skies with a high/low of 59/45 Fahrenheit.

A new California law will prohibit drivers from interacting with their smartphones unless it is mounted on the car's dashboard. AB-1785, which was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown earlier this year, attempts to address advancements in technology since the original hands-free law was enacted a decade ago. Violators will be subject to a $20 fine for their first offense and additional violations will incur $50 fines. The law will go into effect on Sunday. - KPIX 

A giant menorah was stolen from Washington Square Park in San Francisco's North Beach. The 6-foot tall, 100-pound menorah was snatched sometime over the holiday weekend, according to police. “We didn’t think somebody could make off with something that big,” said the co-director of Jewish group Chabad. Chabad owns the massive menorah which is used in local Hanukkah celebrations. The theft is being regarded as a hate crime even if the menorah was stolen for its metal. San Francisco police are asking metal recyclers to be on the lookout for anyone attempting to sell parts of the menorah. - SFC

Muni fares will go up on January 1, 2017. As of the new year, Muni's adult monthly “A” pass, which includes BART rides within San Francisco, will jump from $86 to $91. Monthly passes for youths, seniors, people with disabilities, and those on Medicare will increase from $25 to $36. Muni cash fares are going up from $2.25 to $2.50 and discount cash fares will increase from $1 to $1.25. - SFE

An anonymous Bernal Heights resident has continued their tradition of building a snowman in Precita Park. The "Christmasukkah Snowman" has appeared around the holidays for several years. The icy park-goer is made from real snow, appears seemingly overnight, and is the handiwork of a local who declines to accept credit. "No matter how hard this year may have been, the Seasonal Deities nevertheless saw fit to reward us for our  neighborly virtue," claims neighborhood blog Bernalwood.  - BERNALWOOD

SF Gate compiled a list of 2016's best tweets about life in the Bay Area. Selected tweets include comparing the Salesforce Tower to Nick Jonas fans and a look at silly reactions to raw meat being left behind on a BART seat. Singer Adele even made the list with her Twitter picture of chalk art the Grammy-winner spotted in Golden Gate Park. - SFGATE

  • The City of Richmond passed the “Fair Chance Access to Affordable Housing Ordinance" which will prohibit affordable housing providers in the city from using blanket bans and similar restrictions against individuals with criminal records. Before the ordinance, a policy existed that prohibited anyone with two or more misdemeanors from applying for housing. A similar former policy automatically excluded any applicant with a prior felony. The new ordinance hopes to give applicants with a criminal record a fair chance at securing housing. 
  • Richmond Mayor Tom Butt is on a mission to locate a former Point Richmond LSD lab once run by Grateful Dead sound engineer Owsley Stanley. "Some of these characters who played a big role in the ’60s all crossed paths in Point Richmond. "It’s a fascinating thing," said Butt who believes he is closing in on the lab's location. The lab and its LSD-fueled owner have enjoyed a renaissance of recognition following the 2016 release of the book, “Bear: The Life and Times of Augustus Owsley Stanley." 
  • A 26-year-old man was fatally shot on Chanslor Avenue last week. Juan Carlos Linares, a father of three, was found on the sidewalk and pronounced dead at the scene. Police continue to work on the case but have no suspects in custody. 

Journey through Oakland's beer world: Broke-Ass Stuart is offering an "Oakland Beer Passport." Passport holders get 23 beers from 23 Oakland bars for a cost of $30. (That's about $1.30 per beer.) Bars accepting the passport include Starline Social Club, Ruby Room, Hog’s Apothecary, and The Rock Steady. The passport is good for one beer at each of the 23 participating bars. 

Free latkes and DJ music in Redwood City: Take in the Menorah Lighting at the 7th Annual Chanukah Festival in Redwood City’s Courthouse Square tonight at 5:30pm PT. Guests will enjoy free latkes and donuts, live entertainment, and arts and crafts. 

Spin the giant dreidel in the Castro: Bring a menorah from home and celebrate the Second Annual Hanukkah Candlelighting in the Castro tomorrow night from 6pm to 7pm PT. The free festivities will take place at Jane Warner Plaza at the intersection of 17th and Castro and will feature a giant dreidel, jelly-filled donuts, and a celebration from Cantor Sharon Bernstein and Sha’ar Zahav’s Klezmer band. 

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