SAN FRANCISCO (TND) — As San Francisco mulls giving qualifying Black citizens millions of dollars in reparations, one city supervisor wants to establish an official city reparations office, and is asking for $50 million to do so.
San Francisco Supervisor Shamann Walton proposed at a Tuesday Board of Supervisors meeting that the city set aside the large sum of cash so that an "Office of Reparations" can be established to vet the eligibility of prospective reparations recipients.
Today, I'm again asking for my colleagues to support a supplemental appropriation for $50 million in order to establish the office of reparations and to implement approved recommendations in this fiscal year," Walton announced at the Tuesday meeting.
The supplemental will specifically be for reparations only and it will guarantee money in this budget cycle," Walton added. "As the final report will be received very soon, to set up an office of reparations, which is already a recommendation."
Walton said the office would establish a database that would be used for the vetting process, and that the work would begin "almost immediately upon approval."
The city supervisor also said that he is requesting legislation from the San Francisco City Attorney's Office to create the Office of Reparations housed under his city's Human Rights Commission.
It is time for us to prove that we support repairing the harm that has created so many negative outcomes and wealth disparities for Black people in this city, by design!" Walton wrote in an Instagram post featuring a video clip of his statements.
San Francisco city leadership has already unanimously voted to accept a draft plan for reparations.
Under that plan, Black residents of the city would receive a one-time payment of $5 million, complete and full forgiveness of their personal debt, an annual income of $97,000 and the ability to buy a home within San Francisco city limits for just $1.
Estimates claim the reparations plan will cost San Francisco more than $100 billion.
The plan has been stirring controversy since its inception. Even the San Francisco chapter of the NAACP rejected the proposal, arguing reparations should be made in the form of investments and opportunities, not cash payments.
We strongly believe that creating and funding programs that can improve the lives of those who have been impacted by racism and discrimination is the best path forward toward equality and justice," San Francisco NAACP President Amos Brown said in a statement.
Polling also shows that a majority of Americans don’t support reparations. However, there are apparent differences in opinion on the topic across demographics.
Pew Research Center data shows 77% of Black Americans are in favor of reparations, while only 18% of Caucasian Americans say the same.
San Francisco's Reparations Advisory Committee has argued that its proposals are necessary to right past wrongs perpetrated against Black residents of the city.
The committee is meeting monthly until its presentation of its final recommendations in June.
The San Francisco Board of Supervisors is expected to implement the committee's recommendations at its next meeting on potential reparations on Sept. 19.