Blogging Bayport Alameda

January 14, 2020

Giving consent decree

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

A few years ago I linked to an old sample ballot from 1982 about a Measure I.  Measure I, for those that do not remember, was an attempt to force a referendum on every single subsidized public housing development proposed in the City of Alameda.  The only types of development excluded would have been developments for seniors and people with disabilities.

This was clearly in response to a consent decree forced on the City in response to a lawsuit files by “low-income” individuals.  I had asked for a copy of the consent decree a while ago and received it like five years ago.  Somehow it was buried in my email and I couldn’t remember if I had ever devoted a post about the consent decree itself.  After a quick search it looks like I had not.

It’s here: HOPE v City of Alameda Consent Decree



Essentially it goes on to read that after five years of the City’s CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) funds being reduced to zero because of the City’s unwillingness to identify and acquire a site for low income housing, the Plaintiffs were seeking a ruling to force the City to comply.

It appears, based on the consent decree, that the City capitulated and said it would start actively trying to build low income housing with the agreement that the Plaintiffs would drop their complaints against the City with regard to Measure A/Article 26 and discriminatory housing practices.  It’s yet another point in the history of Measure A/Article 26 that the City’s legal arm had settled rather than allow Measure A/Article 26 to be directly challenged in court.  And yet another point in the history of Measure A/Article 26 that the City has had to make accommodations to ensure that Measure A/Article 26 still remains on the books as written, even though exceptions and workarounds have had to be made in order for the City as a whole remain in compliance with other regulatory bodies.

Anyway, just another interesting tidbit about Alameda history which is rarely, if ever, addressed in the popular mythology about Measure A and about Alameda’s complicated connection between housing and racial politics.


  1. It could have also been that the CDBG claim was the strongest legally, and that rather than the City making accommodations to protect Measure A (79 units and 1500 1981-dollars does not seem like a big concession as against the much greater impact Measure A is generally alleged to have had), the Measure A claims were been dropped because, by themselves, they did not have much legal strength. Hard to say. You would probably have to dig deeper into the case – beyond the consent decree (settlement agreement, in essence) – to argue it convincingly (at least as to why the lawsuit resolved in the way it did) one way or the other.

    Comment by MP — January 14, 2020 @ 8:24 am

  2. It WaS aLl AbOuT pReSeRvInG aRcHiTeCtUrE!

    Comment by cw — January 14, 2020 @ 8:51 am

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