Blogging Bayport Alameda

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.

Councilmember Joe Camicia said Wednesday that he believes the city “came out pretty well.”

“It’s a small price to pay, compared to losing Measure A,” Camicia said.


Fearing the courts could overturn its low-density law, the city council has settled litigation with two residents who claimed the measure discriminates against poor people.

None of the council members would reveal the closed-session vote, but Vice Mayor Lil Arnerich and Council members Lil Arnerich and Bill Withrow said in separate interviews that approving the settlement was the best way to save Measure A from further tampering.

“All of us want to preserve Measure A,” Arnerich said. “If this had continued through the courts…the courts would have probably struck it down in some manner.”

In 2011, housing activists again had to threaten litigation against the City of Alameda for failing to have a compliant Housing Element. A memo was released in 2012, outlining what the City needed to do to avoid litigation by ensuring its Housing Element was compliant. This is why we have the Multi-family Housing overlay to circumvent A/26.

We should not be retaining a law which skirts on the edge of legality and puts Alameda in a permanent defensive position.


  1. As we continue to haggle about local politics, please take time to remember 9/11, which 19 years ago briefly brought Americans together, and led to years of foreign wars…

    Comment by Nowyouknow — September 11, 2020 @ 7:46 am

    • One of the interesting asides in the measure A fracas is that the pro was led by Pat LaCroix and the con by her husband, Mayor Terry LaCroix. Being in long ago time, this was much talked about between husbands and between husbands and wives. “Did you hear?” “My wife wouldn’t“ “She’s disgusting.” Or “Good for her!” “She’s an embarrassment to womanhood.” And “I don’t want to hear about you supporting her!” “You can’t tell me how to vote!” “You act up and I’ll get fired!” Refreshing change from the, I said you aren’t going to work, you’ll have to get permission, women can’t do that routines.

      Comment by Li_ — September 11, 2020 @ 6:02 pm

      • I met Terry La Croixs wife once while working on her neighbors garage, we talked for awhile a couple of times and she was one tuff cookie with her own opinions. strong woman for the times.

        Comment by trumpisnotmypresident — September 12, 2020 @ 10:26 am

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