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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: News

Re: “City Told Developers to Fix Infamous West Oakland Artist Warehouse. Instead, They Demolished It.

property owners who illegally raise the rent will not be stopped by more laws - they already don't care what the laws are. It will still be on their renters to report the abuses, as it is now. This law may not be designed to punish law-abiding property owners but that is the effect.
Instead of Oakland collecting higher fees for more laws, why don't they enforce the ones they already have?

Posted by Ilona Nesmith Clark on 09/27/2016 at 9:22 PM

Re: “Critic Accuses Oakland Leaders of Failing to Report Police Department Sex-Crime Scandal to District Attorney

To the Editor and EBX Readers:
The headline and entire premise of the story are based on incorrect information.
The story reports that the Court’s order requires “city leaders” including the Mayor, City Attorney and City Administrator to report to the District Attorney reasonable suspicion that an officer committed a felony or serious misdemeanor.
However, that is not true.
As you can see from a quick reading of the relevant section of the order (it’s only two sentences), the requirement doesn’t apply to or even mention the Mayor, City Attorney or City Administrator, nor does it apply to the Court-appointed Monitor/Compliance Director or plaintiffs’ attorneys John Burris and James Chanin.
I’m writing for the sole purpose of fact checking so your readers know that the whole story is based on a misreading or perhaps a misrepresentation of the order.
Here is the entire section:
“OPD shall develop a policy to report, as soon as possible, evidence of criminal misconduct by a member/employee to the Alameda County District Attorney's Office for their review and collaboration. Said report to the District Attorney shall be made when there is reasonable suspicion to believe the member/employee has been involved in a felony or serious misdemeanor.”
Your reporters only quote the second sentence, so readers don’t know that the first sentence disproves Mr. Chanin’s accusations against “city leaders” right out of the gate.
The Court order is unambiguous that the police department reports to the DA when investigators have reasonable suspicion that an officer has committed a felony or serious misdemeanor.
I ask that you correct the inaccurate language in the story that states “the decree required … city leaders to notify the district attorney.”
And at a minimum the story should note that the actual language of the order contradicts Mr. Chanin’s accusations against the City Attorney and other city leaders.

Alex Katz
Chief of Staff
Oakland City Attorney's Office

Posted by Alex Katz on 09/26/2016 at 10:06 AM

Re: “Deadly Oakland Fire Ignites Tenant-Landlord Dispute

what happened with the tenants who did not make it out alive was the apt complex held accountable were there any settlements. my sister just recently died from an apt fire. insurance trying to dispose of the building which I am fighting them on and want to take criminal chargesa against
them

Posted by Karen D Marsh Brabham on 09/23/2016 at 2:41 AM

Re: “Oakland's Sweeping Plan for Parking

Oakland is definitely on the right track but based on some of the comments, it will take a while for folks to understand the approach. When I travel from my place in the Jack London District to downtown Berkeley or the UC campus I use public transit or park in one of the public garages. Yes, it is more expensive to park on the street. That's the idea! We do need to find more ways to get folks to/from BART. Easy for me to walk to Broadway and tale the free shuttle. All of the developers flocking to downtown Berkeley should be required to contribute to this service so it can be expanded. And it won't hurt folks to walk a few blocks. In fact, it's good exercise! Parking must also be "unbundled" from new development so it's not necessary to pay for a parking space that you might not use. The price we pay to provide "housing" for our car vehicles is absurd.

Posted by Vivian Kahn on 09/22/2016 at 11:09 PM

Re: “Tenant Advocates say Oakland Officials Delaying and Obstructing Rent Control Ballot Measure

Repeal Prop 13 and vote YES ON PROP JJ - Expanded renter protections. #protectoaklandrenters
We need to keep renters in their homes.
http://www.protectoaklandrenters.org/take-action
http://www.antievictionmap.com/
http://www.oaklandtenantsunion.org/protect-oakland-renters-yes-on-jj.html

Rents in Oakland are among the highest in the nation and people are being forced from their homes every month through illegal rent increases and unjustified evictions. We must act to reform and strengthen Oakland’s weak Rent Adjustment Program and expand Just Cause Eviction protections!

Rent control and just cause eviction protections aren't designed to punish landlords for running a legitimate business; they're simply the most effective way to keep Oaklanders in their homes and set common sense rules of the game - just like for any other business.

WHAT does Measure JJ do?

Measure JJ is a game-changer in the way Oakland renters are protected from illegal rent increases and unjustified evictions.

Specifically, JJ will:

Require landlords to petition with the Rent Board for rent increases that exceed the Consumer Price Index (inflation). Today, illegal rent increases can only be stopped if a tenant files a petition within 60 days. Landlords are not otherwise responsible for following the law.

Expand Just Cause eviction protections to buildings constructed through 1995. The current date for protection is October 1980. This expansion would mean that thousands more units are covered and that evictions can only occur for a legal reason, and that relocation assistance must be paid.

Increase accountability and effectiveness of the Rent Board and Rent Adjustment Program, in several important ways:

Require the City to mail out an annual notice of the Rent Adjustment Program and legal maximum rent increase. Currently, landlords are supposed to inform tenants of their rights. That doesn't work too well.

Create an online searchable database which will give tenant rights organizations, attorneys and advocates better access to badly needed data.

Require annual reporting to City Council of rent increases, eviction notices, and the activities of the Rent Adjustment Program.

Posted by Missy on 09/22/2016 at 10:06 AM

Re: “Oakland Seeks to Tighten Rent Control Rules

VOTE YES ON PROP JJ - Expanded renter protections. #protectoaklandrenters
We need to keep renters in their homes.
http://www.protectoaklandrenters.org/take-action
http://www.antievictionmap.com/
http://www.oaklandtenantsunion.org/protect-oakland-renters-yes-on-jj.html

Rents in Oakland are among the highest in the nation and people are being forced from their homes every month through illegal rent increases and unjustified evictions. We must act to reform and strengthen Oakland’s weak Rent Adjustment Program and expand Just Cause Eviction protections!

Rent control and just cause eviction protections aren't designed to punish landlords for running a legitimate business; they're simply the most effective way to keep Oaklanders in their homes and set common sense rules of the game - just like for any other business.

WHAT does Measure JJ do?

Measure JJ is a game-changer in the way Oakland renters are protected from illegal rent increases and unjustified evictions.

Specifically, JJ will:

Require landlords to petition with the Rent Board for rent increases that exceed the Consumer Price Index (inflation). Today, illegal rent increases can only be stopped if a tenant files a petition within 60 days. Landlords are not otherwise responsible for following the law.

Expand Just Cause eviction protections to buildings constructed through 1995. The current date for protection is October 1980. This expansion would mean that thousands more units are covered and that evictions can only occur for a legal reason, and that relocation assistance must be paid.

Increase accountability and effectiveness of the Rent Board and Rent Adjustment Program, in several important ways:

Require the City to mail out an annual notice of the Rent Adjustment Program and legal maximum rent increase. Currently, landlords are supposed to inform tenants of their rights. That doesn't work too well.

Create an online searchable database which will give tenant rights organizations, attorneys and advocates better access to badly needed data.

Require annual reporting to City Council of rent increases, eviction notices, and the activities of the Rent Adjustment Program.

Posted by Missy on 09/22/2016 at 10:05 AM

Re: “Oakland Seeks to Tighten Rent Control Rules

Newer landlords complaining about tenant protections and 'subsidies' should take a look at Prop 13.

It's time to repeal Prop 13, and give money back to our schools and infrastructure.
https://www.thenation.com/article/have-california-voters-finally-had-enough-of-prop-13/

Posted by Missy on 09/22/2016 at 10:05 AM

Re: “City Told Developers to Fix Infamous West Oakland Artist Warehouse. Instead, They Demolished It.

Danny Haber has a history of doing this to renters:

http://www.antievictionmap.com/danny-haber-and-alon-gutman/

In 2015, Housing activists awarded them as Eviction Profiteers Of The Year

The Negev follows failed sublettors such as Campus.com in their sharing/scalping approach to "communal" living. First using AirBnb, and later developing their own website, they take living spaces from some of the poorest residents of SRO hotels, as well as artists in Live/Work spaces, and plant tech workers in bunk beds in their place. Willing to break the law until stopped, they have been sued repeatedly by displaced tenants. The winds of the Negev are hot, and fires have been involved in displacing tenants at two of their managed properties. They have moved into Oakland as owners of the Travellers Hotel, and manager/sublettors of other properties.

The Graywood, 3308 Mission Street After Dipak Patel turned over management to the Negev Boys, the hotel burnt in a fire, along with the other buildings around it.

Mission Local

http://archives.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/residents-moving-out-of-violation-plagued-sf-tech-communes/Content?oid=2915078

http://mashable.com/2014/11/19/negev-co-op-lawsuit-san-francisco/#w0pcNo8KsOq2

1919 Market, Oakland - Live/work tenants were displaced in two days with help from Oakland City Building Department just after Haber’s 1919 Bayside LLC took over as property manager. Haber demolished the building without a demolition permit.

The Travellers Hotel, 392 11th St, Oakland - Tenants were offered buy-outs and some moved out when hotel was turned into a construction zone as rooms were remade into apartments. Elevator was taken out of commission in 6 story hotel that houses disabled residents.

Posted by Missy on 09/22/2016 at 9:59 AM

Re: “City Told Developers to Fix Infamous West Oakland Artist Warehouse. Instead, They Demolished It.

VOTE YES ON PROP JJ - Expanded renter protections. #protectoaklandrenters
We need to keep renters in their homes.
http://www.protectoaklandrenters.org/take-action
http://www.antievictionmap.com/
http://www.oaklandtenantsunion.org/protect-oakland-renters-yes-on-jj.html

Rents in Oakland are among the highest in the nation and people are being forced from their homes every month through illegal rent increases and unjustified evictions. We must act to reform and strengthen Oakland’s weak Rent Adjustment Program and expand Just Cause Eviction protections!

Rent control and just cause eviction protections aren't designed to punish landlords for running a legitimate business; they're simply the most effective way to keep Oaklanders in their homes and set common sense rules of the game - just like for any other business.

WHAT does Measure JJ do?

Measure JJ is a game-changer in the way Oakland renters are protected from illegal rent increases and unjustified evictions.

Specifically, JJ will:

Require landlords to petition with the Rent Board for rent increases that exceed the Consumer Price Index (inflation). Today, illegal rent increases can only be stopped if a tenant files a petition within 60 days. Landlords are not otherwise responsible for following the law.

Expand Just Cause eviction protections to buildings constructed through 1995. The current date for protection is October 1980. This expansion would mean that thousands more units are covered and that evictions can only occur for a legal reason, and that relocation assistance must be paid.

Increase accountability and effectiveness of the Rent Board and Rent Adjustment Program, in several important ways:

Require the City to mail out an annual notice of the Rent Adjustment Program and legal maximum rent increase. Currently, landlords are supposed to inform tenants of their rights. That doesn't work too well.

Create an online searchable database which will give tenant rights organizations, attorneys and advocates better access to badly needed data.

Require annual reporting to City Council of rent increases, eviction notices, and the activities of the Rent Adjustment Program.


WHO is behind the campaign?

The Committee to Protect Oakland Renters is made up of a coalition of community-based groups as diverse as Oakland:

Oakland Tenants Union
Causa Justa :: Just Cause
ACCE Action (Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment)
EBASE (East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy)
APEN (Asian Pacific Environmental Network)
EBHO (East Bay Housing Organizations)
PolicyLink
California Nurses Association (CNA)
SEIU 1021

Posted by Missy on 09/22/2016 at 9:54 AM

Re: “City Told Developers to Fix Infamous West Oakland Artist Warehouse. Instead, They Demolished It.

Renter protection laws had nothing to do with the 'numerous festering code violations'. The landlords and the City of Oakland chose to ignore code violations. Now the City of Oakland chooses to ignore the scope of work exceeding the permits that were pulled. This is not an isolated issue.

Oakland Bldg Department has a history of ignoring code violations as soon as any permits are pulled. It's as though they are unaware of the Federal, State, and local laws they are responsible for enforcing.

Posted by Missy on 09/22/2016 at 9:51 AM

Re: “City Told Developers to Fix Infamous West Oakland Artist Warehouse. Instead, They Demolished It.

The building may have been neglected because of a long term plan to sell out but it is just as likely that so-called renter’s protection laws limited the owner’s ability to bring in the money to keep it up. Whether renters pay or not, whether they are “protected” by laws or not, No one is exempt from the rising price of housing – while mortgages MAY stay the same the prices of fees, taxes, utilities, contractors, bookkeepers, etc all rise and squeeze everyone.
Measure JJ will make things even more difficult to keep old properties up driving them into financial distress. Not to worry! Measure KK will allow Oakland to use bond money to buy up these properties and turn them into “affordable housing.” What is much more likely is that financially distressed properties will be sold to the highest bidder after becoming irredeemably dilapidated and they will be destroyed so that new construction can be built which is not subject to rent control – sound familiar? Obviously it is already happening, stricter rent control laws will only accelerate the process.

Posted by Ilona Nesmith Clark on 09/21/2016 at 3:41 PM

Re: “City Told Developers to Fix Infamous West Oakland Artist Warehouse. Instead, They Demolished It.

Its bull@a!#. What are we going to do when are kids can't afford college and housing. ( wait that's right now...) what about when the jobs don't cover rent....and then they kick people out of homes to make parking spots for people who don't live in the city.

Posted by Diallo McLinn on 09/21/2016 at 10:50 AM

Re: “Months Later, Still No Charges Against Oakland Cops Who Sexually Exploited Celeste Guap

Once again, Oakland police dept shows why they can't get from under the leash on them from the infamous riders case. It's a shame those crooked cops/thugs with badges escaped conviction in those cases, but the criminals on the witness stand appeared less credible than the ones with badges.
I know because I worked with ALL of them at one time or another. It's a shame that at least one of them was able to get hired by another department. Indio must've lowered their standards for him.
Anyway, I couldn't agree with previous comments more, aside from opd being a decent place to work. It's OK if you keep your nose clean and spend off time with real friends and family.

Posted by Charlie 2 on 09/21/2016 at 8:42 AM

Re: “Make Voting Great Again: Prop. 64 and Oakland's Pot Cash Grab, Stadium Subsidies and More

Wow, who could have predicted that Brooks, Reid and Gallo would come up with this plan to grab massive amounts of cash from pot dispensaries? These crooks need to be voted out of office. It shouldn't take anyone even 5 minutes to figure out that their plan is illegal, but thanks to Rob Bonta for keeping a straight face while pointing this out.

Posted by Jan Van Dusen on 09/21/2016 at 3:36 AM

Re: “Alameda’s District Attorney Wants to Charge Oakland Cops, But Key Witness Sent to Florida

Without the extensive and excellent reporting by East Bay Express, the public would still be in the dark about this horrific abuse of power by law enforcement and its agencies.
The way in which this young girl was exploited and basically passed around by the very same folks who have sworn to serve and protect the public against those of this ilk is an example of the worst and most dangerous kinds of people to have in the criminal justice system. They will do anything including sacrificing the life of this young girl/woman to protect their own. And they have the gaul to ask why there is so little respect for their profession. There will be justice in this case...perhaps from a higher power...but there will be justice . This is just wrong people, just wrong.

Posted by Saige on 09/16/2016 at 11:59 AM

Re: “Alameda’s District Attorney Wants to Charge Oakland Cops, But Key Witness Sent to Florida

'The state Victims Compensation Program Board denied a records request by the Express, which sought general information about when and how local police agencies are allowed to request funds.'
Why would this be? Why would such a request be denied?
And, wasn't there a suicide associated with this 'case', too? I'm really confused. Why can't paperwork be filed? And salaries? Are these men still collecting their salaries? And really? Richmond? You are going to get all pouty and whiny because you don't like the line of questioning. Please do NOT stop reporting on this sordid tale.

Posted by Annemarie Vaughan on 09/15/2016 at 3:53 PM

Re: “Alameda’s District Attorney Wants to Charge Oakland Cops, But Key Witness Sent to Florida

The whole force needs to be fired. I hope more girls step forward who have been sexually assaulted by police

Posted by Veronyca Mawusi Abena on 09/15/2016 at 8:47 AM

Re: “Alameda’s District Attorney Wants to Charge Oakland Cops, But Key Witness Sent to Florida

The OPD and All the other state cop agencies endorsed kabamala already. She isn't going to lift a finger. Obama loves Kamala so don't expect the doj to get in the game either. Decriminalizenow.org

Posted by mistressmax3db9 on 09/14/2016 at 10:25 PM

Re: “Alameda’s District Attorney Wants to Charge Oakland Cops, But Key Witness Sent to Florida

I can't believe this a one-time or one victim occurrence. From my research into historic police corruption, involvement with prostitution is endemic.

Posted by Dolly Fine on 09/14/2016 at 12:26 PM

Re: “Alameda’s District Attorney Wants to Charge Oakland Cops, But Key Witness Sent to Florida

Blatant organized crime by so many paid to fight that. Why so lack of trust and respect! Evidence of their national criminal organization one right after another. Excuses are nothing but more proof. Police policing themselves is like the Mafia's policing themselves.

Posted by Sharon Rosen on 09/14/2016 at 11:18 AM

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