Blogging Bayport Alameda

May 9, 2011

You make me wanna say, oh (x 17) my gosh

Filed under: Alameda, School — Tags: , , , — Lauren Do @ 6:04 am

I almost dug up an old post about the first set of lawsuits against the Measure H parcel tax, reposted it, and wrote “just replace Measure H with Measure A and bam, that is essentially what is going on right now.”   That’s right, according to the Alameda Journal opponents to Measure A are suing the school district, again, saying that the parcel tax is “unfair.”    Because the black hole that they threw their money down the first time in the form of the lawsuit against Measure H was just not satisfying enough that they want to do it all over again.   And even though they were summarily shut down by the judge, they want to do it all over again, with the same lawyer.

From the Alameda Journal:

Along with Hirshberg, the plaintiffs in this latest lawsuit are local property owner George Borikas, Nelco Inc. and Santa Clara Investors II, a general California partnership. Their attorney is David Brillant of Pleasanton.

Nelco Inc is owned by members of the Hirshberg Family and others:

Jerilyn Hirshberg, Wilson Hirshberg, Nicholas Wiebe, Susan Wiebe,Dennis Patheal and Joanne Patheal have a relevant ownership interest inPlaintiff-Appellant Nelco Inc

But the ownership of Santa Clara Investors II is a little fuzzier and the incorporation of Santa Clara Investors II is currently inactive according to the corporation wiki and the Secretary of State business database.   But according to the appellate brief:

Barton Bennett, John Paganelli, and Anne Pananelli Blamire have arelevant ownership interest in Plaintiff-Appellant Santa Clara Investors II

So nothing is really different except for the name of the parcel tax opponents are going after.  Ed Hirshberg‘s statement proclaimed:

“Measure A implements the same unfair tax structure as its predecessor,” plaintiff Ed Hirshberg said in a statement. “The reason the school district continues to choose this structure in violation of state law is to avoid taking steps toward school reform, pension reform and accountability.”

Of course this is the same outfit that sued the school district and then attempted to paint the school district as being litigation prone.   And, let’s not forget the fact that a judge has already ruled on the issue of uniformity.   It sounds like Hirshberg and friends will be presenting a similar case, I’m not sure why they expect that the outcome will be any different than before.

But there is a small extra that they will be throwing in, which — personally — is totally  not compelling, from the Journal:

Tax opponents also announced Friday they have provided evidence to the state Attorney General’s Office that allegedly shows school employees used district computers and other resources to campaign for Measure A.

If it’s anything like this set of “evidence” that was sent to the Fair Political Practices Commission over the mailer that was sent out by the School District, then I’m sure that AUSD has nothing to worry about.   However, it is unsurprising in its methods to file some bogus claim and hype up the existence of a claim against an entity.   It’s a well worn practice by CAMA/AFT/Action Alameda and all its iterations.    Although, not pointed out back then, but I think worthy of mentioning.   When this issue was covered by Michele Ellson over at the Island, the CAMA campaign told her on February 27 that they had already filed a claim with the FPPC about the issue of the mailers.   When Michele Ellson eventually received a copy of the complaint, after she had written about the issue on March 3, the CAMA complaint was actually signed and dated on March 4 AND included a copy of Michele Ellson’s story as supporting evidence in the case against the school district.  Classy.


  1. What is it they say about the definition of insanity being the repetition of unsuccessful actions in hope of a different outcome?

    I wonder if Ed Hirschberg and the other plaintiffs find satisfaction in redirecting the attention and resources of AUSD staff and officials away from the difficult-enough tasks of educating Alameda’s students? Doing so hardly seems to be responsible behavior or patriotic citizenship, IMHO.

    Comment by Jon Spangler — May 9, 2011 @ 1:33 pm

  2. Obviously their lawyer, Brillant, is none to bright (pun intended) to keep trying to revive this very dead case.

    Comment by Fur Princess — May 9, 2011 @ 2:01 pm

  3. The lawyer is making money. Mr. Hirschberg is trying to keep his money. Neither of them appears to care a tinker’s damn about the schools, the kids, or the health of our community.
    I don’t think Ed Hirschberg is evil; just stubborn and convinced that somehow he is right and 2/3 of the community is not right and he must continue to make a bad situation worse to prove his point.
    I find the continuing allegation about the schools using resources to campaign for Measure A, since it was proven to be not true by showing the invoice and payment for the use of the classroom for the photos and that payment for the flyer was by the foundation, not the school district, very strange and pointless.
    Maybe Mr. Hirschberg will wake up one morning soon and say “Why am I doing this; it is not helping the community I do business in and can’t be good for my business!” and drop the whole shebang. Maybe.

    Comment by Kate Quick — May 9, 2011 @ 2:17 pm

  4. Jon do you have that list of top 10 companies you said have 95% Labor costs just like the AUSD that you were touting prior to the election.

    Does anyone have a Total Compensation Spreadsheet on AUSD like the one done on the City Employees? I know were told by our leaders that there is total transparency at the city and that is the policy yet no one wants to make it available.

    95% of total AUSD budget going to STAFF , ADMINISTRATORS and Teachers Salary’s Benefits and Pensions

    California Teachers are #1 in Pay and 47-48th nationally in Student performance.

    Total Employee to Student Ratio of Alameda Residents is about 11/1

    $200 million on campaign contributions

    Teachers’ union leads list of biggest political spenders
    The California Teachers Association has spent more than $200 million on campaign contributions and lobbying efforts in the last decade, leading what the Fair Political Practices Commission calls a “billion-dollar club” of moneyed political interests.
    The CTA, for example, directed $144.1 million into ballot measures

    Comment by John — May 9, 2011 @ 2:57 pm

  5. It’s hard to believe the Teachers are Spending that 200 million for the kids when 95% of the money from these political favors going to them.

    Comment by John — May 9, 2011 @ 3:08 pm

  6. “The lawyer is making money. Mr. Hirschberg is trying to keep his money. ”

    ….and everybody on the AUSD payroll is trying to relieve us of our hard earned money!It’s not about the kids anymore, when 95% of all the money AUSD takes in goes to salaries and benefits.
    And Ms. Quick, the health of our community has been eroding ever since the District came out with Measure H , which divided the community and pitted neighbor against neighbor and friends against friends.
    Fur Princess, the Measure H lawsuit is anything but dead! it is in Appellate Court right now.

    Comment by The smart Voter — May 9, 2011 @ 3:33 pm

  7. Jon, furp and quick, you three no doubt are against the Lab coming to the Point since it will pay neither parcel nor state tax.

    Comment by Jack Richard — May 9, 2011 @ 3:57 pm

  8. off topic, but interesting nonetheless.

    anyone want to buy the base for themselves??

    Comment by E — May 9, 2011 @ 4:38 pm

  9. Our teachers are woefully underpaid for what they do. Teachers teach the kids. They are our major expense because that is where the rubber hits the road in education. Teaching is a profession; people who provide us with this valuable service have every right to expect to be paid for the service they provide. Their classroom hours represent only a fraction of what they do – they plan their curriculum; assemble teaching materials, speak with parents, correct homework, tutor kids before or after school who are struggling and on and on. Why do people think they should not be paid for doing that? They don’t make that much – why do people think they should not have health care and retirement plans?
    I guess some believe that when they retire we should just kick ’em to the curb and let them live on social security.
    I do think that some retirement plans are not sustainable and we need to work on how we can create a more sustainable way to provide for teacher retirement and retired teacher health coverage.

    Comment by Kate Quick — May 9, 2011 @ 4:54 pm

  10. 5. supreme court has ruled that money free speech and it is needed to resist the attempts like union busting trolls like yourself. It’s peanuts compared to corporate donations. Take that Koch Bros. money out of politics and unions won’t need to spend comparatively paltry sums to protect the interests of honest working people. Those donations don’t have to go directly benefit kids in school to be legitimate. All workers have rights.

    6. quit whining. It’s called a living wage. teaching is 95% labor so the budget is mostly wages. BFD. It’s people like you who divide the community with your chronic anonymous carping in the face of a majority decision you won’t accept.

    Comment by M.I. — May 9, 2011 @ 5:44 pm

  11. 10. should read “money equals free speech”, i.e. it is our right to contribute money to campaigns in order to give ourselves voice through the candidates. I think supreme court is biased in favor of the big money, but those are the rules.

    Comment by M.I. — May 9, 2011 @ 5:47 pm

  12. Ms Quick,
    I have no beef with the teachers, yes even Mark Irons wife, who is a teacher in Alameda, that is why he is so vocal and compassionate in his responses!
    It’s the teachers union, who take all the dues from these hardworking people and gives it to lobyists to influence elections to the tune of $200.000. in this past election.
    When people like Margie Sherrat and her husband make close to $100,000. per year each and former Superintendents make more than that in retirements and are still working, that gives me trouble. Sherratt was actively pushing this tax and now we know why.
    Many people have died for the freedom we have in this country, we are a nation of laws , that gives us the right to challenge this tax, one that can tax Lauren Do and her neighbors and any of us, if we like it or not.
    This lawsuit could have been avoided, there where many meetings and suggestions and all where ignored by the arrogant administration.

    Comment by The smart voter — May 9, 2011 @ 6:12 pm

  13. The money that goes to resist union busting trolls comes from teacher union dues which comes from union busting troll tax payers.

    Comment by Jack Richard — May 9, 2011 @ 6:12 pm

  14. RLOL. Exactly Jack

    Comment by John — May 9, 2011 @ 6:20 pm

  15. 14. LOL yourself, sophomoric troll. Union dues are paid by teachers. Who cares if the original source of the money earned by the teachers are tax dollars? Oh, libertarian freaks care, I forgot. Workers have rights, even public employees paid with tax dollars.

    On CA teacher pensions:

    Comment by M.I. — May 9, 2011 @ 6:37 pm

  16. M I

    Im certainly not the Koch Bros. I’m not trying to bust union. I’m trying to stay Solvent like alot of people in Alameda. The City and State and AUSD Employees Compensation packages have killed the Goose.

    Comment by John — May 9, 2011 @ 6:40 pm

  17. Freaks and trolls,
    sticks and stones,
    Some call it rage and screech,
    Others call it freedom of speech.

    Comment by Jack Richard — May 9, 2011 @ 7:07 pm

  18. Wait a minute. If the Supreme Court said that corporations could donate any amount of money to political causes and/or politicians because it was a matter of “free speech” and even corporations have that right, why do you say that teachers cannot donate in the same way? I guess you believe that corporations should have more rights than individuals – not a very libertarian approach, as I understand libertarianism. And the teachers, if they did not want their union money to go to “causes” would vote to curtail the practice, so they are not “victims” of the unions mis-using their money. They WANT to have a say, just as corporations do. Stop scapegoating unions and teachers/civil servants. The issue is that the economy has taken a big hit from the unfettered corporate greed during the Bush administration and revenues have declined to the point that we are not able to provide essential services, yes, such as education of our children to a standard we achieved in the past. It is not the teacher’s fault; nor is it the fault of the unions.

    Comment by Kate Quick — May 9, 2011 @ 9:30 pm

  19. We are 47-48th in Student performance Nationaly Kate. The System is Broken. We need change and money isn’t the issue. Our Teachers are the Highest paid and Results say something is very wrong.

    Without the Corporate Greed and the Government Bailouts there wouldn’t be any money in your retirement fund Kate. You have benefited from it more than most. Alot will never see any substantial retirement at the rate we are going unless we make Drastic changes. We are in some interesting times.

    Comment by John — May 9, 2011 @ 11:11 pm

  20. John must be angry with teachers because he failed to learn grammar and spelling.

    Comment by Kevis Brownson — May 9, 2011 @ 11:47 pm

  21. 18
    Libertarian Party on Jobs
    Party Platform

    Union activity by choice only
    We support the right of free persons to voluntarily associate in, or not associate in, labor unions. An employer should have the right to recognize, or refuse to recognize, a union as the collective bargaining agent of its employees. We oppose government interference in bargaining. Therefore, we urge repeal of the National Labor Relations Act, and all state Right-to-Work Laws which prohibit employers from making voluntary contracts with unions.
    Source: National Platform of the Libertarian Party Jul 2, 2000

    No welfare & no restrictions on work
    We support repeal of laws that impede the ability of any person to find employment, such as minimum wage laws, so-called “protective” labor legislation for women and children, & governmental restrictions on the establishment of private day-care centers. We deplore government-fostered forced retirement, which robs the elderly of the right to work. We oppose all government welfare, relief projects, and “aid to the poor” programs.

    Comment by Jack Richard — May 10, 2011 @ 9:16 am

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