Blogging Bayport Alameda

January 20, 2017

A puppet. A blowhard

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:00 am

Because the only thing that will make today better is Tina Bey and Tituss Burgess singing a song from City of Angels.

January 19, 2017

She’s running out the door

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

On Tuesday night, early Wednesday morning the City Council — minus Trish Spencer — voted 4 – 0 to move forward with the Sanctuary City ordinance.  The reason why Trish Spencer was not there to vote was because she had a flight to catch to go to the Mayor’s Conference.

The amazing thing was that right before she dashed out the door she had enough time to ramble for a solid 10 minutes on an information only agenda item and give her “changes” to the Sanctuary City ordinance which the City Council would be required to make in order for her to support the ordinance.  In case you couldn’t guess, nearly all of the changes would have weakened the ordinance as opposed to make it stronger.

I haven’t been able to watch all of the discussion yet, but here’s a good discussion on Twitter about the distinction between Alameda’s ordinance and San Francisco/Berkeley.

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January 18, 2017

What housing problem?

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:08 am

Just in case the housing problems in Alameda and the Bay Area weren’t bad enough then comes articles like this to make you feel really good about housing affordability round these parts.

The title: A Silicon Valley down payment could buy you an entire house in much of the U.S.

It does apply to the East Bay too if you’re wondering.

In the San Francisco metro area (which includes San Mateo, Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin counties), the situation is similar. The average buyer must set aside 180 percent of annual income to come up with 20 percent down. The median income is $91,777; the median 20 percent down payment is $164,920; and the median home value is $824,600.

Compare that to the nation as a whole: The average American homebuyer has to set aside the equivalent of two-thirds of his or her annual income to make that 20 percent down payment.

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January 17, 2017

Equal protection racket

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

Tonight should be an epic showdown at the City Council meeting about the Sanctuary City resolution.  Naturally very few people are going to come out, in Alameda, to say “deport ’em all and let’s treat everyone like human garbage!”  So instead we’ll get some coy remarks about concerns about federal funding jeopardizing an influx of money from the federal government.

I’m sure that if we created a Venn diagram detailing folks who are concerned about jeopardizing federal funding because of a Sanctuary City resolution and people who were gung ho about getting rid of the SAFER grants because they didn’t want to add more firefighters to the pension rolls would probably overlap in perfect hypocritical symmetry.

So staff has put together a slide detailing what federal funding is received by the City of Alameda:

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January 16, 2017

Happy MLK, Jr Day

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:06 am

Relevant on MLK, Jr Day and for the future:

January 13, 2017

RRAC reveal

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:03 am

I know there was some reason why the City of Alameda didn’t want to live-stream and video tape RRAC meetings.  But it’s the stories that emerge after the fact from these RRAC hearings that makes me wonder if bringing some sunshine into that room wouldn’t be more helpful.

Of the few meetings I’ve listened to — they only record audio — it has seemed pretty unbalanced in favor of the landlord.  All it seems to require is a landlord to quote an unreasonably high percentage of rent to raise and for the RRAC to negotiate that landlord down to 5% to be considered a “win.”

But even more distasteful is the flippant comments like this from landlords, doesn’t say if it’s one of the mom n’ pop variety:

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January 12, 2017

Non-white man’s burden

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:02 am

About that housing document from the State again…

In addition to the — what should be obvious but probably is not — fact stated that California has not built enough housing to keep up with the demand the lack of housing being built is disproportionately affecting people of color which will be increasingly problematic particularly  because the projections are that by 2020 California becomes a majority minority state.
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January 11, 2017

YIMBYs unite

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:01 am

Folks.

This is pretty big in the world of Alameda development news.

At the Planning Board meeting on Monday night, even though the majority of the, for lack of a better term, “development friendly” members were not sitting at the meeting the agenda item about the Encinal Terminals project was overall pretty positive.  I chalk it up to the surprising number Yes In My Back Yard (YIMBY) public speakers.

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January 10, 2017

Safe haven and sound

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:00 am

Beating out the City of Alameda by a week, the Alameda School Board is ready to adopt a Safe Haven resolution for the Alameda Unified School District.  This is important because there have already been two reported bias-related incidents at Alameda schools.

From the resolution, this is what the Safe Haven resolution will ask the Superintendent to create a Safe Haven school district and that status will include:

  • Promoting tolerance and acceptance while taking a stand against hate speech;
  • Urging Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to maintain its 2011 policy stating that it will not conduct immigration enforcement activity at any sensitive location, which includes schools, without permission by specific federal law enforcement officials unless exigent circumstances exist;
  • Maintaining the orderly operation of district facilities by requiring ICE to receive advance approval before entering district sites unless otherwise authorized by law;
  • Sharing of student files that may be used to ascertain legal status of students only where required by law;
  • Designating AUSD school sites as safe havens for students, families, and the community;
  • Allocating resources necessary to help promote and support diversity, inclusion, and values of a multicultural society, particularly with regard to the existing work led by the LGBTQ Round Table, Black Achievers Alliance, ALCANCE (AKA Latino Achievement Round Table), and Alameda Special Education Parent Support Group; and
  • Reaffirming our need to ensure the teaching of AUSD’s K-5 literature-based lessons on understanding the rights of all people and safeguarding fair treatment of protected classes (e.g., different abilities, ethnicities, genders, nationalities, religions, sexual orientations);

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January 9, 2017

Wade in the waterfront

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

Tonight the Planning Board will get a first look at the Encinal Terminals Master Plan.  Encinal Terminals is the piece of land directly behind the Del Monte project next to the water.  It is the parcel where the former owner had once suggested Venice, California canal type homes.  Like Bay Farm.

But first, just wanted to point out that on the Zoning Administrator’s approvals there is an approval to modify a fourplex and turn it into a duplex, so two — what should be affordable by design — units have been removed from the housing market.

Now, here is the site map for the Encinal Terminals project.  The whole packet is light on the renderings, it feels like the developer is testing the waters for the heights being proposed for the project in general:

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