Blogging Bayport Alameda

July 20, 2020

Going the distance (learning)

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

I don’t really focus that much on the School Board too much but it looks like the District will need to reconsider the flexible in-person instruction for the fall given the directions given by Governor Gavin Newsom on Friday.  The funny thing is that while the special meeting was going on Friday morning through 12:00 the Governor was laying out criteria for schools reopening in the fall.  From SFGate:

California Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a Friday press briefing that schools in counties on the  watch list for more than 14 days open with distance learning. Counties would need to meet strict criteria for schools to offer in-class instruction.

Alameda County is on the watch list.

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July 17, 2020

Consenting adults

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

In the “I did NOT see that one coming” files is a letter hot off the City press releases from yesterday afternoon from Alameda County’s District Attorney, Nancy O’Malley.  This is the framing from the City which is a bit, meh:

District Attorney Declines To File Charges Following Police Incident on May 23, 2020 in the City of Alameda

On July 14, 2020, the Alameda District Attorney’s Office informed the City of Alameda that it will not file charges against Mr. Mali Watkins or the involved City of Alameda police officers for the incident that occurred in the City of Alameda on May 23, 2020. The District Attorney further offered training to Alameda Police Department (APD) Officers relating to detention and consensual contacts. The City and APD welcome this generous offer and look forward to working with the District Attorney’s Office to further enhance its operational procedures.

The District Attorney’s letter expressed additional thoughts regarding the May 23, 2020 encounter, including her view that the detention lacked probable cause. This letter has been made available to the City’s independent investigator, Mr. Alfonso Estrada, for his review in the course of his confidential independent investigation. The letter can be accessed here.

The letter is dated July 10 and was stamped as received by APD on July 14.  So a day to release is not too shabby.  So here’s the three paragraphs of the letter.

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July 16, 2020

Dogwhistles of Alameda

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:06 am

Courtesy of an agenda item around the subject of racism:

1

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July 15, 2020

Candidate update 1

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:05 am

The election season has started in earnest with three candidates pulling packets on Monday and one candidate pulling a packet on Tuesday to vie for one of only two open positions in November.

Surprising nobody is former Mayor Trish Spencer who, as of late, has been openly encouraging risky behaviors like reopening of the Alameda Point Antiques Faire claiming that shopping for knickknacks is as essential as buying flour and toilet paper in the age of coronavirus.

A little further from recent memory but as important as anything given that it happened in Trish Spencer’s post-City Council career is her opposition to the Wellness Center.  Recall Trish Spencer preferring that the Wellness Center property be turned into bus parking rather than a space to care for the most vulnerable in our community.

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July 14, 2020

You Got to Dance with Them What Brung You

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

I nearly forgot that I was going to rag on Councilmember Tony Daysog for his performance at the City Council meeting last Tuesday night.  It was only because I was reading through a post on Alameda Peeps about Measure A and Tony Daysog decided to swoop in and post a snippet of his statement that he has clearly prepared ahead of time.  Now I’m not quite sure what Tony Daysog used to capture that video but it’s pure amateur hour given that the meeting has been uploaded to the website and can be downloaded and then spliced.  But it’s here if you’re interested.

A/26 is one of the few topics I’ve ever seen Tony Daysog animated about which is saying a lot because we’ve had a bunch of high profile issues come before him and he’s never spoken this passionately about renters rights, displacement, race issues, etc… No, he’s saving it for this antiquated monument to exclusion.  Which is sort of classic Tony Daysog.

Tony Daysog starts off by acknowledging that the majority of speakers articulated that evening their strong desire to allow a vote on A/26.  Their reason for that desire: the outcomes of A/26 have racist implications.  And instead of doing research and reading about exclusionary policies and their impact on BIPOC, Tony Daysog decides to take a different tack which we’re seen before.  Hand-waving and context-less data.

He has the gall to frame his context-less data as “the truth” and defends A/26 as not racist because the Black population from 1970 to 1980 doubled.

Here’s what the doubling looks like in context to the total Alameda population:

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July 13, 2020

It’s an emergency

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:03 am

Tomorrow night the City Council is holding a special meeting with just a few items on the agenda but this seems to be the most important and it comes as a joint Council Referral by Vice Mayor John Knox White and Councilmember Jim Oddie:

Consider Adoption of Resolution Declaring Racism a Public Health Emergency, including Identifying and Approving Direction to Staff Regarding Initial and Ongoing Actions to Address the Crisis.

It is a massive step forward for this City and it’s not one that Alameda is doing alone or in a vacuum.  The American Public Health Association is compiling a list of jurisdictions across the nation doing the same: declaring racism a public health emergency.  In California alone there are six jurisdictions from cities large and small to counties who have made this declaration and which will, hopefully, provide a springboard to move in the direction of racial justice.

Before the MAGA crowd starts scoffing, there is basis for this declaration.  According to Pew:

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July 10, 2020

Petty crash

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

I know it’s performative and does not replace any real work to push the Black Lives Matter movement forward, but it’s petty and I’m here for it.

Because hopefully the mural will long outlive this presidency and will serve as a reminder and a petty slap in the face every time it’s glimpsed from high above in the tacky gilded tower.

I can’t wait for the aerial photos to start cropping up everywhere.

July 9, 2020

Park it forward

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

The City Council majority did it folks, they have started the process to place A/26, the whole thing, on the ballot for November.  I’ll write more about this later because tonight is the Jackson Park item at the Rec and Park Commission.  This has been a largely lonely effort on the shoulders of one person since 2018 but with the confluence of national and local events finally waking everyone up to correcting the injustices of the past, it’s time for this renaming to happen.

So I did review the meeting from June 2018.  First let me provide you with a quick OMG moment.  So then Park and Rec Commissioner, Ruben Tilos, now Open Government Commissioner appointed by Tony Daysog questioned the number of people who signed the petition for the name change.  He then started wondering aloud about how many signatories would make something notable and then questioned the City Attorney as to how many signatures were needed for a signature based referendum.  The City Attorney answered that the number would be around 9000.  The Commissioner then exclaimed at how large than number was and that “9000 people don’t even vote in the city, sometimes.”

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July 8, 2020

Unceasing vigilance

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

Tomorrow night the Rec and Park Commission will be taking up the topic of Jackson Park and the renaming of said park.  I’ve written in the past about the stalled 2018 effort to rename Jackson Park and I’ve been trying to listen to the audio (because the minutes are really quite uninformative) to get a sense of why the 2018 effort stalled out.  I mean, it didn’t help that there were members at that time with a lot of skepticism about the renaming effort, but today the message from city staff is a lot more forthcoming about what the commission should do rather than leaving it up for a simple discussion.

But since were on the subject of tearing down monuments which has served to prop up racial inequity in Alameda (coughA/26cough), I was reminded recently of a post I had thrown up in 2016. For those that don’t want to click through, this was the featured snippet from some very old meeting minutes in 1943:

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July 7, 2020

Never too late

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

The City Council has a few options tonight with regard to A/26.   They can opt to continue on the path from early June and just place A/26-1&2’s repeal on the ballot or they can change course and decide to drop it all on November’s ballot and let the voters decide if they want to tear down this exclusionary monument to the status quo.

And if you want to know what City Staff thinks, they’ve given their option in the report.  One of the main reasons why they’re recommending placing A/26-3 for repeal as well is because after that meeting in early June, the numbers were released for the new Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA).

For the Bay Area the RHNA numbers for 2023 – 2030 is 441,176.  For comparison the RHNA for the Bay Area for 2015 – 2023 was 187,990.  Alameda’s portion for 2015-2023 was 1723 housing units which some people already thought was too high.  This was around 1% of the total Bay Area allocation.  A little less than that.  If Alameda were to get around the same percentage as before, a little less than 1% of the total for the Bay Area, we’d be looking at around 4043 units to find enough land and zoning to cover this number.

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