Thursday, April 29, 2010

Thursday Must Read

By Robert Gammon
Thu, Apr 29, 2010 at 9:41 AM

Stories that you shouldn’t miss:

1. The Oakland City Council will consider tonight putting an $18 million parcel tax measure on the November ballot to avoid laying off more than 100 cops, the Trib and Chron report. But the proposal may fail to garner enough votes because several councilmembers want the police officers’ union to agree to compensation cuts first. The union, however, says that’s not going to happen because it agreed to givebacks last year.

2. The Oakland teachers’ union went on a one-day strike today, but the school district kept schools open and is staffing them with substitutes and administrators. Last night, the school board considered a plan to slash 460 positions, including more than a 100 teaching jobs, to help bridge an $85 million total budget deficit. The board has also asked the teachers' union to begin a new round of negotiations, although it does not plan to rescind the no-raise contract it implemented on the union last week.

3. A new study commissioned by an Oakland A’s booster group reports that a new Jack London Square ballpark for the team would generate $2.6 billion in total economic activity for Oakland in the next thirty years, the Trib reports. The study, paid for by the nonprofit Let’s Go Oakland, also estimates that property values near the new stadium would increase $4.7 billion over the same period, adding $594 million to city tax revenues.

4. The Berkeley City Council gave the go ahead for a massive new home in the hills, according to the Berkeley Voice. The 6,400-square-foot house, proposed by Lotus Development founder Mitch Kapor, would include a 10-car garage.

5. And East Bay MUD ended voluntary water rationing because of this winter’s above-average rainfall, according to the Chron.

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