Blogging Bayport Alameda

December 8, 2020

Zero sum

Filed under: Alameda — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:08 am

This first video and transcript is the follow up immediately after Randy Rentschler, Alameda resident and director at the MTC and ABAG, spoke and added much needed regional context to the discussion around RHNA allocations. It’s Alameda’s Andrew Thomas musing about how we can make a case that other cities around us should take the units which should be reduced from Alameda in this zero sum game. Because if Alameda can successfully make the argument to a regional body which has 100 other jurisdictions to balance the interests for, the numbers don’t disappear they go to another city or to an unincorporated area.

I’m just gonna add to Randy’s thing, I don’t have his regional experience I just have local experience in five different East Bay cities and every city I’ve worked for we always felt we were unique. […]My experience was […] Oakland, Berkeley, Union City, Albany we always argued transportation: we were uniquely constrained on transportation.

As Randy said: it’s we’re more similar than we are different

And I think that’s the challenge when I listening to Alameda residents say look we need to challenge the number, we need to, you know, it would be crazy not to at least try. There’s no resistance to trying, what I struggle with is: okay so what’s our argument, what is the argument that the units shouldn’t be in our in our city but they should be in a neighboring city. I mean that’s the argument we need to make if we’re going to challenge. Not just that we can’t accept them but where should they go and that’s where I personally am struggling like how are we going to make that case and what is our argument going to be? And Randy just explained like it’s going to be tough, it’s going to be very tough for Alameda to make a convincing argument given the nature of the region and the nature of Alameda in that region.

The next clip is relevant in the zero sum game which is Councilmember Malia Vella inquiring as to where the units go. Those advocating for Alameda’s numbers to be reduced seem to not be that curious in understanding where those units go. That they don’t just disappear into the ether or get sent back to the state. They get reallocated somewhere else.

Malia Vella: We know that these are our allocated numbers to the region, so what happens if we go or if ABAG decides to go with the alternative methodology, right, so the units potentially decrease here in Alameda but but where do they ultimately end up?

Randy Rentschler: So, we have done an analysis about that, you know, in fact that was voted on at least three times through various processes at ABAG including at the executive committee. What it basically does is shift housing further into Santa Clara County, that’s the trade-off. What you see mostly, although Alameda gets caught up in the math, it mostly shifts numbers from — you probably will recall that honeycomb chart — so just imagine things shifting towards Santa Clara County, in southern San Mateo County, and into the city of San Francisco because it’s a jobs heavy formula.

MV: And some of the units also end up in Oakland correct?

RR: Yeah they do, yes.

MV: My next question is: so it’s not that they, just to kind of paraphrase what you said, it’s not that they leave the region they might leave the borders of the city but they stay within the region, correct?

RR: Correct so instead of 25% of the population of Santa Clara taking 30 some odd what plus percent of the housing — again this is in round numbers — you also mentioned Oakland, the formulas do lots of things because it emphasizes jobs and doesn’t emphasize furthering fair housing, you get to see shifts in various quadrants around the Bay Area is what the numbers do.


  1. Which will happen first? Newsom being recalled, or Alameda actually accepting their housing allotment and building all of the assigned low cost housing? Right now the recall has a better chance at 800,000 signatures with a March deadline to get 700,000 more. Flaunting his own lockdown rules with dinner at the pricey French Laundry, destroying the restaurant industry with inconsistent lockdowns while favoring the movie industry, mismanaging the EDD, almost $2 Billion in fraudulent claims paid to incarcerated criminals, and the ongoing disaster of the homeless in California, have left the State in serious fiscal trouble, and alienated many of his supporters.

    And now county sheriffs won’t enforce Newsom’s orders-why would Housing orders be any different?

    Bill Melugin
    Dec 5
    LA Sheriff Villanueva and Riverside Sheriff Bianco have both taken issue with Newsom’s threats to pull funding for lack of compliance, comparing it to when the Governor criticized Trump for threatening to pull funding from California cities for refusing to enforce federal law.

    Comment by Nowyouknow — December 8, 2020 @ 7:42 am

    • Pound your keyboard if you require medical assistance.

      In my experience, petitions are never successful if they’re driven by a loud and vocal minority and not by the general sentiments of the majority. 800,000 signatures in a state with 20 million registered voters. Good luck with that horseshit.

      Comment by JRB — December 8, 2020 @ 10:44 am

      • Probably don’t remember the Gray Davis recall of 2003.

        All that has to happen is what he is doing: more lockdowns, keep schools closed, keep ruining the restaurant business, flaunt the rules, expand the homeless population, and favor your donors. Whether it’s successful or not, he is ruining his own political ambitions while hurting his own party’s grasp on power.

        Comment by Nowyouknow — December 8, 2020 @ 2:18 pm

        • I remember Gray Davis. So that was, what, the second successful recall of a governor in all of American history? And out of dozens of failed ones. Good luck to you, Looney Tunes.

          Comment by JRB — December 8, 2020 @ 6:28 pm

  2. Starting to look a bit iffy for Mr Slick (Back Haired) Newsom. I hold hope in my heart. What is being done to the Oakland Zoo, Museum, hair dressers, Barbers Tattoo Artists, Nail salon workers, Estheticians, Massage therapists, not to mention, Pub owners is completely criminal!

    Comment by Alameda Bound — December 9, 2020 @ 6:18 pm

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