Blogging Bayport Alameda

September 18, 2020

Follow up and through

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

Wednesday night’s Bike Walk Alameda/CASA City Council Candidates Forum was nothing short of excellent. This forum gave us written answers which allowed candidates to deeply dive into certain subjects but then used the forum time to follow up on the information (or maybe lack of information) provided by the candidate in the written answers.

The questions were thoughtful and tough, but fair. The only problem was a lot of candidates avoided answering the questions and there was no push back to the non-answers.

Here’s the forum link, it’s long but really worth your time if these topic interest you at all. Even if they don’t interest you, it’s important to see what sorts of responses these candidates give when directly pressed. Some answered the questions directly, even if the answers may not have been the ones that this audience may have wanted to hear. Some candidates completely skirted around the issue and avoided answering directly at all. This, I find, to be an additional important metric for judging the fitness of a candidate.

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September 17, 2020

Brown M&Ms

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am
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September 16, 2020

Ownership gap

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

At one point in the Chamber of Commerce event a factoid was thrown out into the ring and led to absolutely no reaction from the other side. That piece of information? That of Alameda’s Black population only 7% of that population were homeowners. To that charge, opponents to Measure Z had nothing meaningful to rebut that information. However, I’m sure that there was some busy Googling that night or yesterday to try to prove or disprove that information.

That information came from the National Equity Atlas for a project about renters. Here’s the Alameda data:

There were only a handful of cities that this data was pulled for and it is a really good benchmark for where Alameda is when it comes to homeownership. As you can see 93% of Black households in Alameda are renters. Only 7% of the Black Alameda households own their homes. That is shocking but not surprising.

To compare, the Urban Institute pulled data of Black household home ownership numbers for the San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward metro area and that percentage is 31.2%. There is a massive gap between Alameda’s Black household home ownership numbers and the metro area in which it sits.

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September 15, 2020

Little things mean a lot

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:05 am

File this one under either (1) incompetence or (2) deliberate misrepresentation. On City Council candidate Amos White’s website he’s hyping an endorsement from former City Council candidate Jennifer Roloff and now a sitting Disability Commissioner. For some reason he has her endorsement listed under “elected officials” which she’s not. An elected official that is. Unless they made the Commission on Disability an elected office.

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September 14, 2020

Business to business

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:04 am

The most recent “aha” argument that A/26 boosters against Measure Z has been to show off the publicly available campaign finance report as though this is some smoking gun.

The framing is that Measure Z is supported by “multi-millionaires.” The first two listings come from someone and his company who already publicly supported Measure Z in the form of signing the statement in favor of Measure Z, the CEO of Penumbra. Penumbra, quite possibly, may be Alameda’s largest employer right now and they’ve done it quietly and without much fanfare unlike other large businesses.

Penumbra, for those that don’t know, make medical devices and is headquartered on Harbor Bay. Given the fact that the market for anything medical related probably isn’t going to be slowing down, there is nothing but upside for a company like this. The only limitation is, of course, housing for its employees. Even the most die hard of development skeptics in Alameda would say that companies like Penumbra are exactly the ones that we want to lure to Alameda, but when companies like Penumbra say they need x, y, or z to grow their businesses these folks scoff and trust their gut rather than what these successful businesses are telling them. Take for example the hotels on Harbor Bay, most large companies on Harbor Bay supported these by explaining how they needed space for meetings off site or hotel rooms for visiting guests, but those fell on the deaf ears of people who proclaim in response to any housing development: why can’t we have more businesses?

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September 11, 2020

Till the bitter end

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

The latest organization to endorse a yes on Measure Z vote? The East Bay Times Editorial Board. Highlights:

As the Bay Area struggles to provide enough affordable homes near its urban cores, Alameda voters should eliminate the island city’s nearly half-century-old prohibition on multi-family housing construction.

But the proper ways to address those concerns are through the planning and environmental review processes. Like other cities, Alameda’s development should be governed by its zoning and general plan, which can be adjusted by the City Council to balance the needs and concerns of the community.

In practice, the current charter restrictions have often been ignored, both sides of the bitter fight over Measure Z agree. Thus far, there have been no legal challenges. But that’s not a reason to leave bad provisions that can discourage needed housing on the books.

I will point out that A/26 has been challenged legally though. One of the first challenges came from two Black Alamedans: Modessa Henderson and Clayton Guyton. Rather than defend A/26 in court and seeing signals that the judge was ready to rule against Alameda, the City of Alameda settled.

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September 10, 2020

“Why vote for anything that was illegal”

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

Back in 1973, one of the reasons why the slate of Corica, Beckham, and Hurwitz ran was to provide leadership in Alameda around the topic of development. While we commonly think of the slate as running hand in hand with the Yes on A/26 campaign, in truth two of the three slate members were not fans of A/26. In fact one of them flatly declared that A/26 was illegal and that he would not vote for something illegal.

Even though Hurwitz had initially supported A/26 he had a change of heart about it after learning more about the measure:

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September 9, 2020

Rumble in the virtual jungle

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

The one thing that has been great about COVID-19 is that all of these election season events which would have normally required a person to schlep out to some meeting late at night involving street clothes and brushed hair are now online. Not only are they online but they’re also video optional or they don’t even want your video on, even better.

Tonight the Democratic Club will hold their endorsement meeting on Measure Z (you can register here for it). You can listen to the meeting even if you are not a member of the Democratic Club. You can become a member that night if you like, but you cannot vote for or against endorsement unless you are a member and you’ve attended at least two Democratic Club meetings.

Speaking for the yes on Measure Z side will be Vice Mayor John Knox and speaking for the no on Measure Z side will be Paul Foreman of the very long named PAC which is supporting not one, not two, but three City Council candidates for two spots.

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September 8, 2020

Trust worthy

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

This is probably one of the best presentations I’ve seen on A/26 and its impacts. Which makes it one of the best presentation for why you should vote yes on Z.

The host is engaging and informed and starting with historian Rasheed Shabazz to set the context is the right touch.

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September 4, 2020

It was the intern

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:04 am

It seems like a couple of the City Council candidates are having real problems with premature endorsement posting. In one case, it wasn’t just premature it was a truly puzzling endorsement which defied logic.

On Wednesday a sharp eyed Twitter fact checker who the Gig Codiga campaign also owes ice cream posted this:

As we all know, Gig Codiga is a Republican who has never felt the need over the last four years, with the creeping authoritarianism of the Republican party’s standard bearer, to make the change to NPP or something else. To put this in perspective, the City Treasurer was a well known Republican and he is not currently a Republican on the voter rolls. The likelihood of an organization like Planned Parenthood to endorse a Republican in this current political environment is tough to believe. In this 2020 cycle alone PP has not given one single cent to ANY Republican candidates.

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