Friday, January 31, 2014

Friday Must Reads: Cost of Warriors Planned SF Arena Soars; Sierra Snowpack at All-Time Low

by Robert Gammon
Fri, Jan 31, 2014 at 10:31 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. The pricetag for the Golden State Warriors’ proposed new arena on the San Francisco waterfront continues to skyrocket and team owners acknowledge the increased costs will delay the project, the Chron reports. The cost to repair piers, which would only ready the site for construction, has climbed to at least $180 million. The $1 billion-plus project, which includes condo and hotel towers, also must go before city voters.

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Thursday Must Reads: Richmond Eyes Sales Tax Measure; GOP Gubernatorial Candidates Have a History of Not Voting

by Robert Gammon
Thu, Jan 30, 2014 at 9:58 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. The Richmond City Council is considering a sales tax measure for the November ballot to help pay for road repairs in the city — but voters said in a recent survey that they would only approve the plan if it also funded public safety and youth programs, the CoCo Times$ reports. The half-cent tax would generate about $7 million annually and would allow the city to obtain $90 million in bond financing over three years.

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wednesday Must Reads: Seventeen Communities May Run Out of Water Soon; Old Bay Bridge Demolition Is Over Budget and Behind Schedule

by Robert Gammon
Wed, Jan 29, 2014 at 10:17 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Seventeen communities in the state could run out of water in the next 60 to 120 days because of the drought, the Mercury News$ reports, citing a new state analysis. The communities include Cloverdale and Healdsburg in Sonoma County and the tiny Lampico County Water District in Santa Cruz County. State emergency officials may be forced to truck in water to the affected communities as their wells and reservoirs run dry.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Bedbugs, Mold, and Cockroaches Prompt West Oakland Tenants to File Complaints Against Landlord

by Jean Tepperman
Tue, Jan 28, 2014 at 10:04 AM

Citing problems including bedbugs, black mold, cockroaches, broken appliances and heaters, and more, residents of a West Oakland building combined to bring nine complaints against their landlord in a hearing that began Monday before the Oakland Rent Adjustment Board. The tenants said this was the largest such hearing in the board’s history.

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Tuesday Must Reads: BART Police Change Search Rules; Textbooks Become Too Expensive for College Students

by Robert Gammon
Tue, Jan 28, 2014 at 9:47 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. BART’s police force has changed it rules for searching homes and buildings in the wake of a fatal shooting of the agency’s head of detectives by one of his underlings, the Chron reports. BART will now require that the agency’s deputy police chief sign off on searches — a move that raises further questions as to whether BART cops have been sufficiently trained. The Chron reports that detective Michael Maes shot and killed his boss, Sergeant Tom Smith, last week inside an empty one-bedroom apartment in Dublin after Maes apparently mistook Smith for an armed intruder.

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Monday, January 27, 2014

Telegraph Avenue Complete Streets: Oakland Seeks Input on Corridor Redesign

by Sam Levin
Mon, Jan 27, 2014 at 12:26 PM

How can the City of Oakland improve Telegraph Avenue? Officials are now seeking input from the public on the city's efforts to redesign the corridor as part of its Telegraph Avenue Complete Streets Project. The goal of the project, which is a collaboration between the city and the Alameda County Transportation Commission, is to "improve transportation safety and comfort on Telegraph Avenue between 20th Street and 57th Street for all modes of travel." That project area extends through downtown Oakland, Uptown, Koreatown-Northgate, and Temescal.

Residents interested in the project can offer feedback through this survey, which closes on Friday, January 31.

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Oakland Privacy Activists Threaten to Sue the City to Stop Surveillance Project

by Darwin BondGraham
Mon, Jan 27, 2014 at 11:07 AM

A coalition of activists opposed to the construction of Oakland’s Domain Awareness Center say they're ready to take the city to court to stop the controversial surveillance project. Brian Hofer of the Oakland Privacy Working Group is delivering a letter to Mayor Jean Quan, the city council, the city administrator, and the city attorney today. The letter states that the group will "seek judicial relief" to halt the project. The group claims that the proposed contractor to carry out work on Phase 2 of the DAC, Schneider Electric, is also a nuclear weapons contractor, and that hiring the company would violate Oakland's Nuclear Weapons Free Zone Ordinance.

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Monday Must Reads: A’s Owners Ask for Coliseum Lease Extension; Berkeley Family Camp to Move to Echo Lake

by Robert Gammon
Mon, Jan 27, 2014 at 9:48 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. The owners of the Oakland A’s are asking for a lease extension at the Coliseum of five to ten years — on top of the two-year extension they just signed, the Trib$ reports. The request by the A’s owners provides further evidence that the team’s plan to move to San Jose likely will never materialize. The lease extension request at the Coliseum also indicates that the team’s owners remain uninterested in building a new waterfront ballpark at the Howard Terminal next to Jack London Square.

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Friday, January 24, 2014

Friday Must Reads: BART Cops Failed to Use Their Body Cameras; Warriors’ Owner Admits Building SF Arena Will Be a ‘Challenge’

by Robert Gammon
Fri, Jan 24, 2014 at 10:05 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. The five BART cops who crowded into an empty one-bedroom apartment in Dublin failed to turn on their chest-mounted cameras before one of the officers shot and killed another, the Chron reports. BART police have yet to say why the officers weren’t using their cameras, which are designed to record interactions with the public. Investigators also have yet to determine why BART officer Michael Maes fatally shot Sergeant Tom Smith. Although Smith was wearing a bulletproof vest, the bullet from Maes’ gun managed somehow to hit him in the chest.

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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Thursday Must Reads: Caltrans Hid Weld Defects on New Bay Bridge; Suit Says Raiders Paid Cheerleaders Less than $5 Per Hour

by Robert Gammon
Thu, Jan 23, 2014 at 9:26 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. Caltrans officials hid revelations about defective welds on the new Bay Bridge and fired an inspection firm because it had repeatedly raised objections to the welds, the CoCo Times$ reports, citing a new report commissioned by the state Senate. Caltrans officials also ordered inspectors to not put their objections in writing — in an effort to keep the objections from being disclosed to the public.

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