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San Francisco Chronicle, Nov. 14, 2006
by Robert Selna, Chronicle Staff Writer
(11-14) 15:40 PST SAN FRANCISCO -- The Board of Supervisors voted today to outlaw the use of Styrofoam and other polystyrene products by city restaurants and to effectively decriminalize the use, sale and cultivation of marijuana by adults.
The food container legislation, introduced by Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin and approved unanimously on the first of two votes needed for passage, would apply to about 3,400 restaurants in San Francisco as well city facility food service providers and food vendor companies contracting with the city. It is scheduled to be implemented June 1, 2007.
Polystyrene containers are blamed for filling up landfills and breaking down into smaller nonbiodegradable pieces that harm marine and other wildlife when they are ingested.
In passing the ordinance, San Francisco joins number of other cities around the country, including Oakland, Portland, Ore., and Berkeley, which banned Styrofoam and similar products nearly 20 years ago.
The marijuana legislation, which passed on an initial vote 8-3, would set nearly all crimes involving marijuana as the lowest law enforcement priority for city police and urges the district attorney to adopt the same policy when prosecuting criminal defendants.
It passed with the blessing of the police officials, but over the complaints of some residents who say the marijuana trade attracts or occurs along with other criminal activity that undermines the quality of life in their neighborhoods.
Ammiano introduced the legislation in August at the behest of groups pushing for the national decriminalization of marijuana.