Willie's shady role in Tim's San Francisco

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Willie Brown, big developers, and fat payouts -- it's the American way, right?

The Guardian’s longtime but recently ousted editor Tim Redmond continues to do excellent, important work through his Tim’s San Francisco blog, including stories today on the Chronicle’s blackout of yesterday’s big City College protest and the invasive tactics of online marketers.

But it was a story that he wrote yesterday that really should get wider play in the local media: a recent court case showed how Willie Brown received a whopping $750,000 to lobby for a local developer involved in the politically uber-juiced Transbay real estate deal. Tim builds off of the San Francisco Business Times article that broke the story and his own reporting for the Guardian questioning why Brown isn’t registered as a lobbyist.

“Nobody else is looking at the story, but it's actually pretty big news. It sheds light on the huge amounts of money that get thrown around when someone's trying to build a commercial office tower in San Francisco. It shows how much of a player Brown is and how much influence he's seen to have under the Lee Administration,” Tim wrote.

Indeed, particularly given the huge and ethically question platform that the Chronicle hands Brown with his Sunday column, and the role that Brown played installing Lee into Room 200, where he’s carried water for Brown’s clients, this is a story that deserves far more attention and scrutiny.

Keep it up, Tim.

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