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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: Endorsements

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

Good ideas . Apropos , if someone requires a CA East Bay Purchase Agreement Addendum , my friend used a fillable version here https://goo.gl/ac6v3w.

Posted by diday hizon on 11/27/2016 at 10:20 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

You should have endorsed Macleay for OSD School Boord

I understand you have a ton of races to cover, little time insufficient staff.
And Don can be a frustrating mix of visionary and nuts /bolts kinda guy which is hard to catagorize for an enorsement.

I have spoken to Jody briefly several times over the years since before she was first elected and followed closely some of the issues she voted on. Last fall I attended two OUSD board meetings for the first time in my life and spoke at one of them pleading for OUSD to issue retroactive parcel tax exemption refunds to seniors and low income homeowners. Last fall I exchanged emails with Jody on the parcel issues and possibly spoke with her on the phone once.

I have talked much more with Don Macleay because we were often found ourselves sitting next to each other at forum during the District 1 Council Member election of 2014. Much to my surprise (and his) we found many things Oakland public policy issues we either agreed on or could agree to disagree on. Consistently, I was impressed by his intellect and focus on local public policy issues. We'd probably have come to blows if we were discussing US economic policy but he's a surprising thinker and we might find ourselves agreeing.

Executive summary: Support Don because we need smart new blood overseeing the cush bureaucracy at OUSD. Dont vote for him if you think his posting are too long. (this one of mine is way way too long, and too late also.)

Beneath those rough edges and "aw shucks" demeanor, is a public policy wonk that is in touch with the needs and desires of the underclass of Oakland that constitutes most of its students and dropouts. He's also led a varied life and career that included supporting Sandinistas in the Nicaraguan civil war and working as a machinist as well as computer repair services business owner, and picking up a phi beta kappa key as an older undergrad at SF State. It's a background that helps explain why he's more in touch with training and ed needs of working and underemployed families here than Jody. of graduating from a UC and going on or back to UC grad school.

I don't think Jody is in the pockets of anyone, though law I know from firsthand experience how expensive even a local district race can be. Just by the number nicely produced mail pieces alone, it is clear she has some deep pocket supporters. And she is going to have be very sure she doesn't want to run for higher office or rerun for this one if she crosses too many of them.

So I was surprised to go to http://www.opendisclosure.io/#!/city/2/oak… that she had only spent 8k as of the reporting period ending in late October. Since printers and mailing houses require payment up front from politicians :), I don't see how her own committee could have produced even one of those mailing pieces unless she targeted an extremely low percentage of highly likely voting households. That number used to be about 40k in D1. Using a cost of mailing/processing and printing, it costs at least 35 cents per normal sized full color union bug mailer. This is the only time I wished I hadn't thrown the entire 3lbs of political mailers I kept from this election so I could read the disclaimer saying 'Paid for by XXXX" on Jody's pieces. Someone or some group paid at least 14k for each of those mailers unless the mailing was extraordinarily restricted (such our LL's which could only afford to send out 8k mailers twice to the entire city highly likely unique 80K households.




But most likely many of the (no recycled) mailing pieces singing Jody's praises were "slate mailer" subsidized by organizations for which a supported candidate only has to pay equivalent of a time share fee to get sent to every voter in the district.


The biggest advantage to Jody was the endorsement of the Alameda Democratic Party because she could stamp "endorsed by the Democratic Party on everything mailed out for her. Plus, she gets on the restricted City Dem Party slate mailer. All of a sudden her cost of mailing to entire D1 Dems, drops well below 1,000 (Our LL paid 950 to go out to entire city)


Does it mean jodi is in GO" pockets (if you assume as I do now, that's not a good thing) even if their pac spent 14k on a mailing for her? Probably not, but something to think about.


if you're still with me, this gets down to why I signed his original petition and took one of his signs.


OUSD has several much much worse directors than Jody. She's even one of the better ones.


But that ain't saying much compared to the quality of the candidates we've been going for Council and Mayor in recent years.


I asked a colleague on LL why Wellstone (the self-described left wing Oakland Democratic club choice Jody over Don. 'Jody spoke better.' Someone else attended the LWV session and said Don referred the financial questions to Jody.


My response to the above is that Jody's profession as an energy consultant to public orgs involves tons of public speaking practice. Don's business as computer services business owner involve discussions one on one with business owners and the boards of small nonprofits.


Re Don referring fiscal questions to Jody. When she first ran I went up to here or her to me and asked her how much money the state gave OUSD each year for attending. She was absolutely clueless. Now it rolls off her like what's the weather today. She learned and so could Don.


As for Jody's command of the fiscal situation there. Sure they now have a clean audit opinion which allows OUSD reduce borrowing costs by millions each. But what about all those years they were overpaying those millions? She (and all the other directors) never told them constitutes to yell at Jerry Brown to stop the audit power games.




Back to my interactions with Jodi last fall around the parcel tax refunds as I grew frustrated with ousd admin stonewalling. A savvy OUSD gadfly tutored me how I could exercise my right under the Brown Act to get my issue to be placed on the board agenda. Jodi's response:


From: Jody London [mailto:jody.london@ousd.org]
Sent: Wednesday, November 4, 2015 2:33 PM
To: cpas
Subject: Re: Jody, at tonight's Nov 4th session would you be willing to put this on the agenda?

Len,
I believe we can address your concerns administratively and do not want to introduce this as a new legislative matter. If you are proposing amendments to the previously approved parcel taxes, I believe that would have to somehow go back to the voters. I will share these concerns, as I have your other concerns, with our staff and work with them to ensure we are doing what we told the voters we would do.


Jody London
Vice President and Director, District 1
Board of Education
Oakland Unified School District
510-459-0667

On Wed, Nov 4, 2015 at 2:16 PM, cpas wrote:
for future full Board consideration and discussion after Brown Act etc notification





I even publicly thanked her for helping on this. Then I waited and waited . No response from the admin or board re my questions. After about two weeks I gave up on Jody. One member from far side of town, Shanti Gonzalves took less than half a day to get OUSD to start translating their refunds into languages besides English.

Dozens of seniors and some low income home owners contacted me in response to my posts and op-eds asking what they could do. They were the one who shamed OUSD into allowing retroactive refund clams. They were the ones who threatened OUSD that if a mailing didn't go out to every property owner, they vote no on all future ones.


Vote for Don Macleay at this late date because we need a change at the top of OUSD. We need someone who will be resistant to the Kool aid they all drink and give the overpaid, overstaffed admin way too much discretion.


Len Raphael, CPA










.

Posted by Len Raphael on 11/08/2016 at 4:28 AM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

Survivors of police shootings say NO on measure LL- Yes we need change but not this change and we are uniquely qualified to understand the process and provide the best possible solutions for human rights-we say NO on measure LL because the same people who work for the alleged civil rights attorneys and impotent organization alternatives have not produced a positive result, have endangered and maligned victims and should not be granted more power money and control. Yes we need growth but not regression as is offered with measure LL- SEE MORE ON WHAT VICTIMS ENDURE AT www.karmawon.wordpress.com

Posted by karma wonitall on 11/05/2016 at 9:31 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

Jody the charter school Appeaser London is the progressive choice of the East Bay Times? Time for a change in the East Bay Oakland School Board District 1 when Wednesday night Jody London is arguing that buried in Measure J pasted by the voters to specifically rehabilitate the following specific sites Washington Elementary (name changed to Sankofa), Roosevelt, McClymonds, Glenview (being rebuilt with student temporary relocated to Santa Fe Elementary), Skyline, Webster CDC replacement, Whittier, Sobrante Park, Madison and Madison "sports complex", the Broad has the right to take funding from these schools, many over 70 years old to fund the renovation of 2nd Avenue buildings Administrative Building and Dewey High School.

Members of the Measure J oversight appeared and said that the Measure J money could not be used for funding 2nd Avenue projects.

I had another Board member beside Jody the charter Appeaser provide the following language that gives the Board the power to change the site specific buildings that Measure J money can be spent on:

o redeveloping administrative sites and inactive school sites,

o reconfiguring inactive school sites for alternative uses such as teacher housing, alternative academics, and training,

o reconfiguration of sites or parts of sites to house administrative functions, and

o optimizing active school sites to host community partners.

This language is not in the extended text or the summary statement of the purpose of Measure J.

I am still looking to find reference Jody made to Measure J language that allows the Board to switch site-specific priority list for Measure J that Jody the charter Appeaser mentioned at Wednesday night's Special Board meeting regarding plans for Second Avenue facilities.

Jody the charter Appeaser shouldn't be trying to divert money that the public authorized to be spent on listed projects to funding 2nd Avenue project.

Second Avenue is an important project to address but not at the expense of promises made to the voters and property owners that pay the bill.

Posted by Jim Mordecai on 11/04/2016 at 2:47 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I'm personally dissapointed that you endorsed Jody. I was certainly not interviewed and I have no idea why you endorsed this GO candidate, but not the others.

Some reason would be nice.
I found nothing in the write up.

Posted by Don Macleay on 11/04/2016 at 1:07 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I'm voting for Zakhary Mallet precisely because he was not afraid to expose the political motives that dictated the route of BART's proposed San Jose extension. Bad transportation. I also want a BART director who will rein in the overblown salaries and benefits of BART employees, who get free or almost free family health coverage no matter ther family size. When BART personnel were finally required to pay into their pensions, they got a wage increase of exactly that amount, defeating the purpose. This wage stuff needs to be addressed, and Lateefah Simon is establishment politics as usual, based on her endorsements.

Posted by Jan Van Dusen on 11/03/2016 at 12:32 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

Jody London at last night's meeting regarding Board's plans for new administration building and upgrading Dewey High School facility--both located at 1025 Second Avenue-- referenced language in Measure J giving the District the right to spend Measure J money for rehabilitating the water damaged District Administrative building.

I am not sure, but I think she was referring to the part of the language below that gives the Board the right to make changes in the Measure J listing of projects the public voted on.

Board Member London's assertion that the Board could make change in the listing ignores that the changes have a context having to do with possible adjustments that have be made because the funding is insufficient to fund all of the projects listed.

Its a robbing Peter to pay Paul situation not diverting large portions of Measure J to pay for reconstructing damaged 2nd Avenue Administration building and upgrading Dewey. and negatively impacting the projects the public was promised would be funded.

Finally, the Board's changes would have to be supported by the Measure J civilian oversight committee and the Measure J Civilian Oversight Committee opposes the use of Measure J funding for 2nd Avenue upgrade.

Measure J extended text:
"Completion of some projects may be subject to further government approvals by State officials and boards, to local environmental review, and to input from the public. For these reasons, inclusion of a project on the Bond Project List is not a guarantee that the project will be funded or completed. The Board of Education may make changes to the Bond Project List in the future consistent with the projects specified in the proposition."

Posted by Jim Mordecai on 11/03/2016 at 8:04 AM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I am astonished by your endorsement of Jody London for Oakland School board in district 1. According to your own reporting, big money interests such as GO Public Schools are trying to influence our elections- http://m.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/how-a-handful-of-pro-charter-billionaires-flooded-oaklands-school-board-elections-with-big-time-cash/Content?oid=5016336 Just because they aren't making large contributions to Jody London now doesn't mean that they haven't in the past. London is still endorsed by GO. Her opponent, Don Macleay, is endorsed by the Oakland Justice Coalition, AFL-CIO, the Oakland Education Association, Rebecca Kaplan, and OUSD Parents United. He is also endorsed by the Green Party. Don believes in transparency, strong management, and accountability. Knowing what you know about GO Public Schools and their goals, I find your support of his opponent unfathomable. As an Oakland teacher who has attended a lot of school board meetings and who keeps up on the issues, I support Don Macleay.

Posted by Bethany Meyer on 11/02/2016 at 7:12 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I cannot say it better than Farshid Moussaka so I am reporting that person's comment:"I am disappointed by your endorsements for OUSD board member Jody London - OUSD has been terribly non-transparent and bypassing process in its allocation of millions of dollars of borrowed taxpayer money, and Jody has not been responsive nor has she made accountability of OUSD a priority in her campaign. Oakland deserves better, I urge you to reconsider and endorse Don Maccleay- he has made accountability a central issue in this campaign. Furthermore you are opposed to GO control of our school district, yet Jody is supported by GO, and Don is vehemently opposed to it. Thank you."

Janet Arnold

Posted by Jan Arnold on 11/02/2016 at 6:56 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I am disappointed by your endorsements for OUSD board member Jody London - OUSD has been terribly non-transparent and bypassing process in its allocation of millions of dollars of borrowed taxpayer money, and Jody has not been responsive nor has she made accountability of OUSD a priority in her campaign. Oakland deserves better, I urge you to reconsider and endorse Don Maccleay- he has made accountability a central issue in this campaign. Furthermore you are opposed to GO control of our school district, yet Jody is supported by GO, and Don is vehemently opposed to it. Thank you.

Posted by Farshid Moussavi on 11/02/2016 at 5:23 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

This has become a biased newspaper with little or no accountability. You are supposed to report the news and not take sides! You lie and say candidates where invited and come to find out you never invited them!!!! Your credibility needs to be addressed as well as the knowledge of your reporters on the subjects they claim to cover! People can actually think for themselves but you have taken it upon yourselves to think you are "know it all's" and you have proven that you are not! You owe public apologies to candidates that you have ignored and saw fit not to give your readers the "right" to know!!! Don't go covering transparency cause you don't know the meaning of the word!!!! Your rudeness and immaturity begs the question!

Posted by Nancy Sidebotham 1 on 11/01/2016 at 9:15 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I would like to thank the Eastbay Express for bringing AC Transit issues to the forefront. As a retired bus driver running for the board of directors with 23 years of
experience I've seen AC Transit at it best and it's worse now than ever before, so for many reasons you've already stated I'm running. Also I will not support buying a house, AC Transit is not in the real estate business. Thank you to those who have supported me in the past and
read this paper!!! Dollene C. Jones

Posted by Dollene Jones on 10/28/2016 at 2:33 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I usually rely on the Express for guidance with difficult decisions in election seasons. However, this year your credibility is cast into a gray area with your recommended support of prop 64. In other words, "I do not think this bill means what you think it means." Prop. 64 was written not to decriminalize cannabis, but to legalize a recreational commercial cannabis industry. Two very different things. For example, the tax revenue will not go into a general fund to benefit all Californians but instead to the California Marijuana Tax Fund an enormous slush fund designated solely to financing the massive bureaucracy that Prop. 64 would create. There are multiple other reasons as well if you do your reading. I grew up in Humboldt, I know the local growers who are farming sustainably and protecting the woods and watersheds. Every single one of them is for legalization but against prop 64. Please do your homework so I can continue to rely on your assistance. I'm sure there are many out there who feel the same.

Posted by Robert Martien on 10/23/2016 at 3:49 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

Borrowing money to buy a house, which you can live in and will likely appreciate, can make sense, as does borrowing money to buy an expensive tool to increase your income. But to borrow money for maintenance is like borrowing money to pay for your utilities. Not only will you have to continue paying ongoing utilities, but you will also have to pay on the loan, plus interest, Meanwhile, wealthy people who buy those bonds not only get good interest on a fairly safe bet, but that income is usually exempt from taxation, depriving communities of more income. If BART management is too incompetent to keep up with maintenance (and cleanliness), get rid of them and get new ones, and DO NOT even talk about another transbay tunnel until the current mess is cleaned up. Finally, borrowing billions makes the decision makers careless with money (prime example: the East Span, where they spent 10 times what a much more rational southern crossing should have cost. The quake damage should have been quickly and easily repaired as only one section was damaged, protecting the whole bridge, as it was designed to do.

Posted by Steve Juniper on 10/22/2016 at 11:43 AM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

Hmm, all that text and only one mention of climate (in the endorsement of Eric Swalwell, who sadly is no position to do much that isn't just rhetorical). I didn't watch all the video, but did the subject even come up?

Surely the critical issue of our time deserved more attention than that?

Posted by Steve Bloom on 10/18/2016 at 7:06 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

Your analysis of the results of K1 in Alameda failing are grossly incorrect. It will not "blow a $5 million hole in the general fund." There are two items in the measure:
1) an advisory vote on the transfer of over $3M/yr from Alameda Municipal Power to the city. Pass or fail nothing will change.
2) A vote to update the UUT to cover more items. If it fails the current UUT will continue to be collected, so no change. If it passes the UUT will be extended to new services and the funds generated will increase.

You have done a great disservice to people looking for voting guidance by saying the city will lose $5M from the general fund if K1 does not pass.

Posted by Marvin Hamon on 10/16/2016 at 7:12 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I don't understand your Alameda endorsements. At a LWV Candidate Forum, Marilyn Ashcraft explicitly endorsed L1, not M1. Vella failed to endorse either, but explicitly opposed L1. How is Ashcraft better on Alameda Point development than Daysog? Vella a "Labor Leader"? She has only been a lawyer for barely 4 years, and her first job seems to be as a lawyer representing Teamsters, but she has never been a union laborer herself. how does that limited experience make her a "labor leader"?

Posted by Florence Erlenmeyer on 10/16/2016 at 2:40 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

No to all new taxes. Easy peasy!

Posted by Robert Hope on 10/14/2016 at 2:59 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

rebecca stalzman is a racist BART director

http://www.ebcitizen.com/2015/01/bart-director-rosa-parks-did-not-shut.html

Why is no one talking about the incumbent in District 3 BART who attacked Rosa Parks and BLM...more white people in office being protected by the press.

Posted by Max101010 on 10/13/2016 at 11:17 PM

Re: “Vote With Us! The East Bay Express' Endorsements for Election Day 2016

I'm voting no on G1, another $120 OUSD parcel tax. Yes, another, the last one just went into effect last year. OUSD doesn't seem to be able to budget for more than a few months at a time. And the processing of exemptions to the last parcel tax for seniors and low-income people was so badly bungled
they're still working on it. OUSD did not provide adequate notification to eligible homeowners of the application process for exemptions. Finally,
Oakland's parcel taxes are flat, regressive taxes--only city in the area to fail to try to base them on size/value of property.

Posted by bethw on 10/13/2016 at 6:29 PM

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