Blogging Bayport Alameda

August 8, 2017

Asked and answered (over and over)

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 7:47 am

Did I promise video of the joint MTC and ABAG meeting where Alameda’s Mayor completely embarrassed herself by doubling down on misunderstood information about Brisbane’s housing numbers?  Well if I didn’t promise it, here it is anyway.

So let me set the scene up for you, sorry the videos are a bit on the longer side, the first one is pretty wonky, but it happens around one hour 11 minutes into the meeting.  This is when staff answers questions about the Brisbane numbers.  TL;dw: the numbers came from the Brisbane’s Priority Development Area (PDA) application.

The first speaker is the representative to ABAG from East Palo Alto. The second speaker is a supervisor from Sonoma County. The person answering questions is staff.

Now here is the first of two Trish Spencer snips.  The first she cross examines staff, manages to have him answer her question the way she wants in her momentary “gotcha” moment (Brisbane number came from Developer), but later the chair of ABAG clarifies where that Brisbane number comes from: the PDA which was submitted by the city of Brisbane.  This comes about 30 minutes after the staff has already clarified that the number came from the PDA which was submitted by the city of Brisbane.

Here’s Trish Spencer saying that she will not vote for the proposal because of Brisbane because she still feels (even after clarification) that the number came from the developer and she’s super confident in her assessment, despite everyone saying to the contrary, because the developer showed up at the meeting to say that Plan Bay Area 2040 should be supported:

And finally here are two MTC members (one is the Mayor of San Jose, the other a BART Board member), before their vote, clarifying once again after hearing the question (and answer) over and over again that the Brisbane number came from the city itself and not the developer.  By the way this video is worth watching if you watch nothing else.

Somehow everyone else in the room understood that answer after the question was posed again and again except Alameda’s Mayor.  How embarrassing.





  1. Lauren, videos not loading for me. Don’t know if it is me or the link.

    Comment by MP — August 8, 2017 @ 8:37 am

    • Sorry bad link on the last one, should be fixed now.

      Comment by Lauren Do — August 8, 2017 @ 9:12 am

  2. So the Alameda NIMBYs frequently argue they recognize the greater Bay Area’s need for housing, but that Alameda isn’t the right place for it because “we’re an island”, “limited access points”, etc. and that new housing should be built somewhere else.

    But when an opportunity comes up to build new housing right across the bay (immediately adjacent to a major highway and Caltrain access), the Head Alameda NIMBY votes against that too.

    Am I taking crazy pills?

    Comment by brock — August 8, 2017 @ 10:04 am

  3. Wow. What an embarrassment.
    And…why is her name placard vertical? Is it a bat signal to the anti-development Illuminati?

    Comment by Kristen — August 8, 2017 @ 11:13 am

    • They turn the placards vertically when they are speaking, probably so the camera can find the speaker easily.

      Comment by Lauren Do — August 8, 2017 @ 11:22 am

  4. From the SF Chronicle article on Brisbane;

    A more controversial proposal, Senate Bill 35, by Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, would speed up the approval process for housing developments — limiting local reviews — in cities and counties that have failed to meet state goals for home-building.

    Gov. Jerry Brown has made it clear that he will only sign a deal with money for affordable housing if it includes provisions to fast-track development — which, he argues, will make housing construction cheaper and quicker.

    Comment by Mike McMahon — August 13, 2017 @ 8:28 am

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