San Francisco leaders voted on Tuesday to end its boycott of nearly 30 conservative-leaning states.
Why did they boycott?
In October 2016, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved a local ordinance prohibiting city employees from traveling to or doing business with 30 states that had passed, in its view, restrictions on LGBT rights.
The ordinance was later amended to include states that, in the board's view, had restricted voting rights or limited abortion access.
What is happening now?
The reason for the repeal is simple: not only did the law not help San Francisco spread its progressive values, but it was costing the city and its taxpayers a lot of extra cash.
In fact, a report from city administrator Carmen Chu found no "concrete evidence" the boycott was ever effective. The report also outlined how the boycott was an "administrative burden" for the city, had "unintended consequences" for city residents, was too expensive, and was actively damaging the city's bottom line.
The report explained:
While it is difficult to quantify the exact cost of [the boycott] to the City, the Budget and Legislative Analyst notes that a loss in competition is likely to increase the City’s contracting costs by 10 – 20% annually. These costs could continue to increase and compound overtime as the City’s potential contractor pool shrinks if the list of banned states grows.
"It's not achieving the goal we want to achieve," Supervisor Rafael Mandelman said. "It is making our government less efficient."
"We haven't changed a single law. We have made competitive bidding less competitive," agreed Supervisor Matt Dorsey. "I think San Franciscans would be angry if they knew the amount of hoops that have to be jumped through and the added cost to city contracting."
Mayor London Breed (D) is expected to approve the appeal after the Board holds a second and final vote on the repeal measure next week, the Associated Press reported.
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