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Re: the previous comment on "there is still REGULAR service serving these schools"
The "school" bus from my kids school to home comes on time and takes 20 min. The "regular" bus from my kids school to home is a combination of 3 buses that takes 2 hrs 40 min total - the most optimal combination - each way.
Additionally, even if I allowed my kids to spent 5.5+ hrs on bus every day, assuming all 3 legs of the trip come on time (a huge assumption), even if kids left from home at 6 am, and used regular buses, they could NEVER come to school by the start of school time. There is just NO way to get to school from many portions of Oakland by the time school starts. Again, we're talking about NOT EVEN A SINGLE day ever could they come to school by the start of classes.
"even cars that are driven 15 to 20k miles a year sit unused 90% of the time"
They don't do any harm and are not any inefficient when they stay unused.
My bed is unused about 75% of the time, too. Should I do as in Jungle by Upton Sinclair and rent the same mattress to multiple people working different shifts, to be "efficient" by your formula.
Those who are paying for their solar panels (the solar panels cost A LOT in addition to the PG&E charges), paying off the cost of solar panels for many years, sacrifice their financial resources to benefit ALL. They do this because they have an understanding of their responsibility for climate change. They provide clean energy generation for everyone, instead of the "dirty" energy PG&E otherwise sells to non-solar users at a profit.
The benefits of solar energy are clear. It creates jobs and reduces carbon emissions. It also helps prevent the emissions of dangerous chemicals into the air — including sulfur, mercury and coal ash — that we breathe.
Now PG&E wants to add another level of fees (conveniently payable to PG&E) just for those who are already paying through the nose to help us all stay alive?
What is the basis for stating that "short-term housing rentals" do not pay taxes to the city? Airbnb reports all payments on 1099, same as any other business, and City of Oakland get a copy of it from the State of California, just like for any other business. So - is this statement based on any kind of facts or records, or on someone's imagination?
They're entirely out of control and perfectly shameless. My husband and I walked around Lake Merritt last week, and took a shortcut through a partially-secluded area. There were 6 cops in uniform drinking hard alcohol with their police cars running (burning fuel) nearby. They did not expect anyone to see their "on the job party" and looked uncomfortable seeing us. My husband rushed me through the area preventing me from staring, to avoid unknown-extent consequences of witnessing the scene. . . Cops on duty getting together to get drunk on duty?
There are good vehicles on the market right now. Toyota Prius C (NOT the regular Prius) averages 54mpg in the city, and I have seen mine reaching 99.9mpg at times. It is very reliable and one of the most affordable cars on the market. I do my driving at a fraction of the cost of a traditional vehicle, including the purchase cost of the car, fuel and maintenace.
1. "Public employee pensions" come in different formats. CalSTRS participants, for example, contribute 8.5% of their pay to the plan, and their employer (community college district) contributes another 8.5%, with states only contributing 2%. This is instead of participating in Social Security where participants and employers contribute 6.2% of their pay, each. Public employees DO pay for their pension benefits.
2. If a government were to switch to a 401k-like plan for all new employees, what funds would the pre-existing employees be paid from? The whole idea of the plan as it is now is that current members contributions pay for retired members benefits. Government was under obligation to put away pre-existing members contributions but it did not. Switching new members to a 401k-like system will kill the source of cash for all already-earned benefits for pre-existing members (that are guaranteed by the state Constitution) and will put the government in a big deep hole effective immediately, for a long time. How is this a solution?
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