Blogging Bayport Alameda

June 20, 2018

A political stance

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

It was a tough choice to talk about baby concentration camps or the local recall effort.  I guess I can write about the fresh daily horror that is the Trump administration tomorrow.

Local recall effort, the landlords pretending to cape for Jill Keimach did warn everyone that they were going to do it.  That if they didn’t get what they wanted <insert demand here> they were totally going to recall the City Council members who did what it was that they didn’t want the City Councilmembers to do.  Notwithstanding the fact that Jill Keimach voluntarily accepted the settlement package, they still decided to start a recall effort for, well, it appears only two of the three people that weren’t super keen on Jill Keimach.

Because it’s not about principle, it’s about politics.

Malia Vella who was cleared by the independent report.  Louder for the folks in the back: CLEARED BY THE INDEPENDENT REPORT.  Is now subject to this asinine recall effort supported by (1) supporters of Tony Daysog, (2) landlords, (3) relatives of the City Auditor , and your usual band of conservative leaning suspects.

We’ll see what sort of money this group decides to throw into this effort.  It seems like it would be a better investment to support a candidate in the upcoming election rather than go through the crazy cost — to the City — of staging a recall.

Here’s Malia Vella’s statement:



  1. If my honesty & integrity were being doubted in public and there was a tape that would back me up, I’d release it.

    But that’s just me.

    Comment by dave — June 20, 2018 @ 6:25 am

    • Just to clarify, Keimach recorded Oddie & Vella without their knowledge. Keimach lied and said she had the city attorney’s permission to do so. The taping came out as part of an investigation wholly instigated by Keimach. The DA’s office has the recording, neither Vella or Oddie have, or have ever had the tapes. If you want to keep up the “release the tapes” narrative aim your comments at the District Attorney.

      Comment by Mike Henneberry — June 22, 2018 @ 10:34 am

      • Vella can and should publicly call for the DA to release them. Since she swears the tape proves her innocence, it is curious that she hasn’t.

        Comment by Trumpkins — June 22, 2018 @ 11:28 am

        • maybe you should call the D.A. and ask her to release the tapes. or maybe we should wait and let the D.A. do her job.

          Comment by JohnP.TrumpisnotmyPresident. — June 23, 2018 @ 9:23 am

  2. I can’t wait to watch this bite these folks in the ass. A whole bunch of small business people have alienated a large portion of the voting public/potential clients, they’ve reactivated folks who might be apathetic in the next election and have united a bunch of groups that do not necessarily always agree, and set up their candidates to be sullied by the effort in the process.

    I’m just going to be over here with the popcorn.

    Comment by Angela — June 20, 2018 @ 7:14 am

    • ACT should try to get funding from the Newsom machine, who spent $30M to attack his Democratic challengers, and funded John Cox’s campaign in order to get a Republican opponent in the November general election. It’s disillusioning to be a Democrat with these machinations. The Vella recall could all be a ploy to activate her base to increase liberal voter turnout for Democrats and the City’s sales tax measure during a traditionally low voter turnout mid term election when less than 50% of the registered voters come out.

      Comment by Alan — June 22, 2018 @ 8:04 am

  3. A significant portion of the report concerns the August 16, 2017 meeting among Vella, Oddie and Keimach. The substance of the meeting is very much disputed, in particular with regard to the “abundantly clear” line the report finds in the City Charter prohibiting Councilmembers from promoting particular candidates for appointment. Keimach says that Vella did promote a particular candidate, Mr. Weaver, in the meeting. Ms. Vella’s interview appears to have been less clear, but the report found that “on balance” (in the Aug. 16 conversation and elsewhere) Ms. Vella did not cross the line.

    There is a tape recording of the meeting that would clear that point up. Critically, however, the “principal investigator, Mr. Jenkins, did not listen to the recording or consider it in preparation of this report.” If Mr. Jenkins’ charge was to apply the rules of evidence as if he were a judge, perhaps he made the correct call in not listening to the tape. (He does not make any written determination on the question of whether the tape would be excluded as evidence in an official proceeding in the part of the report released to the public, however.) Perhaps excluding the tape – assuming it contained evidence of a charter violation – is, nevertheless, a procedurally proper basis for beating the City Charter rap.

    As the eminently fair reporter Mr. Tavares wrote in the East Bay Citizen on May 4, “The recording may be the only hope for the truth.”

    Comment by MP — June 20, 2018 @ 7:34 am

  4. How should the fact that Jill Keimach accepted the settlement affect how we view the conduct of the councilmembers that led to all of this?

    Comment by MP — June 20, 2018 @ 7:37 am

    • Do you really think Keimach wanted to continue working in such a toxic environment?

      Comment by vigi — June 20, 2018 @ 9:27 am

      • I don’t disagree. What I do disagree with is the apparent suggestion that because Keimach accepted the settlement we should forget what led up to it. Keimach can certainly settle her own case, but the question for the city is whether we are ok with what led up to it. Maybe I’ve missed it, but I don’t even think we’ve heard those involved, and who remain in positions of power, saying they wouldn’t do it again.

        Comment by MP — June 20, 2018 @ 10:10 am

  5. Even if she produced the tape, that wouldn’t stop this group from trying to unseat her. This group has been trying to vote in their candidates for a very long time:

    This is the goal of Paul Foreman’s PAC – copied from the Alameda Merry Go Round blog:

    We need to elect at least three candidates whose mission is consistent with ours.  In order to do this we need to have a PAC that concentrates on the forest, not the trees, and presents a slate of candidates that, if elected, may turn this City around.

    So even though Jill Keimach has moved on, and accepted an almost $1M settlement, they are using this event to try and galvanize their members to the polls and vote in a new slate.

    Comment by Karen — June 20, 2018 @ 7:52 am

    • Paul Foreman was not around when the DeHaan-Bail-Thomson slate was running. Some have tried to point out to him the folly of a “slate”, but those who do not remember history are doomed to repeat it.
      The only “slate” in recent history that was successful was Gilmore-Bonta-Tam, and that was backed by far more special interest money than any local grass-roots effort could ever hope to achieve.

      Comment by vigi — June 20, 2018 @ 9:40 am

  6. It seems to be a bit of a deflection to point out a small group of people who purportedly think the settlement was not enough. I would not vote for recall because I thought the settlement was not big enough. I would not vote against the recall because I thought the settlement amount was just right. Ms Vella is correct that the City got lit up big in this (“outrageous”). The question is why we landed in this mess in the first place, not whether the settlement was fair to Ms. Keimach as an individual or not (which would seem to be a private question or concern at this point). And I could believe these two things at the same time: that councilmembers acted badly and that it was time for Keimach to go if the working relationship (for whatever cause) was irreparable.

    I don’t know that the recall is being led by Mr. Foreman. Do we know one way or the other? That did not seem to be the purpose of the PAC he discussed forming.

    Comment by MP — June 20, 2018 @ 8:08 am

    • As far as I know, neither the PAC nor Mr. Foreman have anything to do with any recall. Maybe “Alameda Activists” knows. It’s a group I have heard of but know nothing about.

      Comment by vigi — June 20, 2018 @ 11:31 am

    • No, I checked with the PAC leadership and they did not know anything about a recall .

      Comment by Nancy — June 20, 2018 @ 4:12 pm

      • as much as I disagree with this Mayor I would never support a recall against her.

        Comment by JohnP.TrumpisnotmyPresident. — June 20, 2018 @ 7:48 pm

  7. I am not part of any small business group, nor am I a conservative, but I believe most Alamedans find the significant heavy political influence of the AFD in the form of political donations disturbing. C’mon- what Vella and Oddie did was consistent with their political backing. Their actions at minimum have cost Alameda the city manager’s settlement, the cost of the investigation, and a significant amount of bad press. Why does there have to even be a recall? This is why people hate politics. Both should resign because we deserve better.

    Comment by Nowyouknow — June 20, 2018 @ 8:24 am

  8. “CLEARED BY THE INDEPENDENT REPORT”. means what, exactly? If “independent’ means the investigator was free to leave out whatever he wanted to leave out in order to simplify his work, yet still collect his fee. I guess that means independent to some people. But it says nothing about the quality of the investigation. Louder for the blog poster: INVESTIGATOR WAS TOO COWARDLY AND/OR LAZY TO LISTEN TO THE RECORDING. An investigation based on deliberately excluding evidence you have in your very hands is not a very complete one.
    The guy is a mere investigator, not a judge.

    Comment by vigi — June 20, 2018 @ 9:26 am

    • From Alameda MerryGoRound: ” However eagerly anticipated it may have been, the report prepared by public-agency lawyer Michael Jenkins can’t be seen as telling the whole story about the involvement of our local politicians and the Alameda firefighters’ union in the selection of the City’s new fire chief.

      That may not be entirely Mr. Jenkins’s fault: although he managed to interview 22 witnesses, he wasn’t able to obtain all of the relevant evidence. In fact, several of the key players – state Assemblyman Rob Bonta and, it appears, two IAFF Local 689 leaders – refused to cooperate with the investigation.

      But Mr. Jenkins also ignored evidence available to him. For reasons the report does not specify, he chose not to listen to the recording of a crucial meeting held by Council members Jim Oddie and Malia Vella with City Manager Jill Keimach.”

      Comment by vigi — June 20, 2018 @ 11:24 am

    • I wonder if this is anything like the “independent investigation” which cleared Alameda public safety personnel of all culpability in the Death of Raymond Zack.

      Some things are just so obviously wrong, no matter what an investigation officially says about them

      Comment by vigi — June 20, 2018 @ 11:28 am

  9. I was wondering when becoming anti-housing and anti-union became liberal causes… ???

    Comment by Angela — June 20, 2018 @ 11:35 am

  10. one answer no one has at this point, did Ms Keimach break the law or not. the city must have had some reason to forward the tape to the district attorney. I haven’t seen any charges forwarded to the district attorney over any criminal action by council members.

    Comment by JohnP.TrumpisnotmyPresident. — June 20, 2018 @ 2:30 pm

    • The city cutting her a 7-figure check indicates that she didn’t break the law.

      Comment by dave — June 20, 2018 @ 2:35 pm

      • how so, then why on earth did they send the tape to the district attorney, and why did the city attorney advise her that taping could or would be illegal. my indications are very different than yours Dave.

        Comment by JohnP.TrumpisnotmyPresident. — June 20, 2018 @ 3:44 pm

        • If your options were A) send her off with a million bucks or B) charge her with a crime and fire her for cause, why would you choose A if B was an option?

          Comment by dave — June 20, 2018 @ 4:35 pm

  11. personally I would have fired her for cause and went to court. I believe she broke the law when she set up a meeting and then recorded it. that’s just my opinion just like you have an opinion.

    Comment by JohnP.TrumpisnotmyPresident. — June 20, 2018 @ 7:45 pm

    • Anyone would have done that — punish a lawbreaker & save a million bucks — if they could. But they couldn’t because no charges will be filed. And do you suppose no charges will be filed?

      Comment by dave — June 20, 2018 @ 9:37 pm

      • Should say “why do you suppose”

        Comment by dave — June 21, 2018 @ 5:51 am

  12. At Tuesday’s city council meeting, Malia Vella proposed the City not give the legal notice contract to the Journal, but to the SUN instead. Council unanimously rejected staff’s recommendation to switch to the AJ, and unanimously awarded the contract to Alameda’s hometown paper, the Alameda SUN.

    Two half-pages devoted to the Malia Vella recall petition in the Alameda SUN today.

    Comment by vigi — June 21, 2018 @ 9:57 am

    • soooo, what’s your point.??

      Comment by JohnP.TrumpisnotmyPresident. — June 21, 2018 @ 9:16 pm

      • Irony, my dear. Just irony.

        Comment by vigi — June 22, 2018 @ 9:16 am

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