Friday, December 30, 2011

BREAKING NEWS: The New Parkway to Sign Lease at Uptown Warehouse Today

by Nate Seltenrich
Fri, Dec 30, 2011 at 1:30 PM

Oakland, take note: The Parkway is back. The Express received confirmation from The New Parkway’s J. Moses Ceaser this morning that after more than a year of searching for a place to reopen Oakland’s beloved theater pub, at 2:30 this afternoon he will sign a lease for a new location in the Uptown Art Murmur district. The announcement comes not a day too soon; today is the last business day before Ceaser would have had to return hundreds of thousands of dollars in start-up funds contributed by more than one thousand investors for the endeavor, according to an agreement reached earlier this month.

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Thursday, December 29, 2011

High Court Delivers Huge Blow to Oakland and Other Cities

by Robert Gammon
Thu, Dec 29, 2011 at 11:01 AM

The California Supreme Court today delivered a devastating blow to Oakland and other cities that depend heavily on redevelopment dollars to revitalize downtrodden areas. The court upheld a plan hatched by Governor Jerry Brown and approved by the legislature that eliminated redevelopment agencies statewide. Cities had sued to kill that plan, but the high court rejected their arguments. The court's decision means that Oakland and cities throughout California will have to disband their redevelopment agencies completely, lay off tens of thousands of workers, and immediately transfer local property tax proceeds to the state.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Lawsuit May Decide Who Owns Your Twitter Account

by Rachel Swan
Wed, Dec 28, 2011 at 2:30 PM

An Oakland writer might be the subject of a precedent-setting lawsuit to decide to whether or not a business can expropriate the Twitter feeds of current and former employees. Noah Kravitz garnered 17,000 Twitter followers as a product reviewer and publicist for the site PhoneDog, The Guardian reported. He left the company with the understanding that he could keep the account for personal use, so long as he tweeted on behalf of the company from time to time. Then his former employer sued on the theory that Kravitz has stolen the company's customer database. PhoneDog is seeking $2.50 per follower in damages, which would amount to a total of $340,000, The Guardian reports. Kravitz, who is now the editor-at-large for TechnoBuffalo.com, is suing PhoneDog for backpay, as he announced on a wildly popular KQED Forum broadcast this morning. He expects the company launched this counter-suit for leverage, and he compared his resignation to "an amicable divorce" that required the divvying of assets — including social media. That said, it could have far-reaching consequences.

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New York Times May Sell 16 Papers, Including the Santa Rosa Press Democrat

by Rachel Swan
Wed, Dec 28, 2011 at 10:54 AM

Evidently, the holidays weren't enough to stanch the bloodletting in journalism, as more bad news came over the transom yesterday. The New York Times announced "tentative" plans to sell sixteen regional papers — including the Santa Rosa Press Democrat — to Florida media group Halifax Holdings LLC. According to Press Dem reporter Kevin McCallum, the impetus was to slough off smaller papers so the Times can focus on strengthening its core. At present the deal isn't final, but Bay Citizen writer Aaron Glantz assured that it could mean "big, immediate changes" in the North Bay media landscape, should the sale go through. Jim Romenesko published an FAQ for NYT Regional Media Group employees on his website, along with a copy of the letter that NYT Company vice president Susan Murphy sent to announce the potential sale. We'll keep you posted as new details arise.

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Wednesday Must Read: Giants to A’s: Not So Fast; California Lowers Prison Population

by Robert Gammon
Wed, Dec 28, 2011 at 6:50 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. One of the owners of the San Francisco Giants said that the team will fight to block the Oakland A’s planned move to San Jose, the Chron reports. In addition, Peter Magowan, who is also the Giants former managing partner, said he does not believe that baseball commissioner Bud Selig will go back on his word and allow the A’s to go to San Jose. Selig has repeatedly said that the Giants own the territorial rights to the South Bay and that no other team can infringe on them. Rumors that Major League Baseball was ready to approve the A’s move also appear to be untrue. The issue is not even on the baseball owners’ meeting agenda next month. And A’s co-owner Lew Wolff disavowed a recent San Jose Mercury News report that said he was “confident” that MLB would approve the San Jose move, telling the Chron he didn’t know where that story came from.

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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Tuesday Must Read: A’s Co-Owner Confident About Move to San Jose; Economists Expect Uptick in 2012

by Robert Gammon
Tue, Dec 27, 2011 at 6:54 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Oakland A’s co-owner Lew Wolff is confident that Major League Baseball will approve his plans this winter to move the baseball team to San Jose, the Mercury News reports, citing a source close to Wolff. Wolff wants to build a new ballpark for the A’s near downtown San Jose. However, it’s unclear whether Major League Baseball will overturn the San Francisco Giants’ territorial rights to the South Bay or whether Wolff has worked out a deal to buy those rights from the Giants.

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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Thursday Must Read: Report: Democrats Manipulated Independent Redistricting Process; Oakland Council Tables Use of Force Measure Against Occupy

by Robert Gammon
Thu, Dec 22, 2011 at 6:45 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Democrats, led by members of Congress, manipulated California’s redistricting process by enlisting lobbyists, union officials, and community groups to influence the state’s new independent redistricting panel, ProPublica reports. At open hearings in front of the independent panel that drew up new boundaries for Congressional and state legislative districts, numerous people with ties to the Democratic Party portrayed themselves as average citizens. The resulting districts heavily favored Democrats in California and short-circuited reform efforts designed to create more competitive political races in the state.

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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Ogawa Plaza Flooding Ends; Informal Community Meeting Set for Jan. 7

by Nate Seltenrich
Wed, Dec 21, 2011 at 4:42 PM

Two weeks ago, we called attention to the plight of Oakland's most visible oak tree due to the city's continual overwatering of Frank Ogawa Plaza. The very next day, we spotted a public works employee performing a cursory investigation of soil conditions surrounding the massive oak's trunk, and today we're happy to report that it appears the flooding has, after more than a month, finally come to an end.

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Your Lunchtime Dose of Heartwarming

by Ellen Cushing
Wed, Dec 21, 2011 at 12:42 PM

Seriously, quite possibly a late-breaking contender for photo of the year?

12-21-navy-kiss.jpg
  • Brian J. Clark/Associated Press

(It's Petty Officer 2nd Class Marissa Gaeta and Petty Officer 3rd Class Citlalic Snell, after the USS Oak Hill returned from an 80-day voyage. Thanks, TPM!)

Wednesday Must Read: Republicans Push Tax Hike on Middle Class, Curtail Unemployment Benefits; Quan and Santana to Appoint Independent Police Monitors

by Robert Gammon
Wed, Dec 21, 2011 at 6:44 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. House Republicans blocked a bipartisan compromise that would have temporarily extended a tax cut for 160 million Americans, and as a result most Americans will have to start paying higher taxes on January 1. The hard-line GOP members, who have repeatedly stymied efforts to raise taxes on the wealthy, decided to vote for higher taxes on everyone else because Democrats would not go along with more budget cuts. The House Republican stance, however, has fractured the GOP because the majority of Republicans in the Senate voted for the compromise that would have avoided the January 1 tax hike. The Los Angeles Times reports that Senate Republicans apparently realize that it’s politically toxic to raise taxes on low and middle-income voters, while refusing to increase them on the wealthy.

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