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Re: “Town Business: City Workers Plan to Strike, and Oakland's Affordable Housing Fees Slow to Raise Money

Oakland resident and new employee here. As someone coming from the private sector with a heart for public service, I hear you -- "Your salary should be commensurate with your performance and City of Oakland employees generally are far from the top in comparison with other cities." Yet, how can we attract high performers and retain the best "top" employees for Oakland if we're not even close to keeping up salary-wise with our neighboring cities? And how can we deliver quality services that our constituents want or need if we're consistently understaffed and working 2 jobs on top of what we've been hired to do? It's true there's inefficiencies, red tape, dead weight. But there's so many great employees of Oakland, who are dedicated to making their city work, who work more than 37.5 hours per week without overtime pay, and who deal with a lot of the BS because they care. A salary equity study showed that city staff is making 10-25% less than their neighboring city counterparts. A majority of Oakland's workers are Oakland residents, or once were residents who have since been displaced. Despite the immeasurable benefits of contributing to your city, there's only so much the best, most caring employee, can take...

Posted by Love for Oaktown on 12/05/2017 at 11:21 PM

Re: “Why Derick Almena Deserves the Most Scorn

I understand the writer's perspective in this article. Almena just did video interviews where he basically states he's the victim and everyone else but him is to blame. That's not the truth. This is from a certified electrician who saw the building. "Robert Jake Jacobitz: On my contract with him and verbally I warned him of a fire argue with him about a fire more fingers than I have on my hand the last argument we had he finally finally had me cut a fire door in that he owes me for still and I understand he barricaded up that night. I've done my interviews with the FBI ATF DA's office got my subpoena I'm the one is going to be telling Derek he's going to s*** when he sees me in court do you don't know I'm coming. so you won't be able to play uninformed surprised victim he was well-informed multi times about the very real possibility of Fire as my second hand information from the horse's mouth not hearsay."

Posted by Mary Cummins on 12/05/2017 at 7:13 PM

Re: “Five Ways to Protect Future Generations from Sexual Harassment and Assault

In addition to the steps the author outlines, it is also important as we move forward, to focus on men to play their part in solving this problem. Men, starting with young boys, need to be shown the connection between sexual assault and harassment to their own mothers, sisters and female friends. If young men can get to a place where they value all women like they do their own family and friends, this will stop. The classic male paradigm that tells boys that all that matters is "scoring" at any cost has to change. That mindset diminishes the value of women as people and friends who can add way more to your life than sex. I have always opined that when men consider whether sex should be a part of a relationship with a woman, the question they should ask themselves is not should we do it. The question should be, if we do it, then what? Failure to have a cogent answer to that question almost always means that it is not a good idea. Having women as friends ads value to a mans life. Young boys need to be taught that as early in life as possible.

Posted by Gary Patton on 12/05/2017 at 7:04 PM

Re: “When Sexual Harassment and Violence Become Normalized

There is no doubt in my mind that at least 6 or 7 women of 10 in America have experienced sexual assault, violence or harassment at some point in their lives. This issue has been underground far too long and especially in families and in the workplace.The current wave of the "me too" movement is a good thing that is long overdue. Hopefully, it will change the way men are socialized in this country. Although men who are guilty of taking advantage of women have moms, wives, daughters and sisters, somehow there is a disconnect. These men do not personalize these assaults as having an impact on the women in the world that they love. In my own life, I was lucky enough to have a sister one year my senior. That meant two things. One is that she was my first best friend that I shared my life with every single day. Secondly, that my adolescent introduction to girls was initially from being around her friends. I learned to communicate, treat and respect females as people and friends first. On the other hand, most males are socialized and introduced to girls and dating by stupid boys their age or older boys who teach that all that matters is to somehow "score" as much and any way possible. This initial socialization of the male mind is not healthy and easily leads to the culture that we have always had in America. With that being said, I challenge women to pay more attention to the current impact of social media on the attitudes of young boys and girls. The internet is full of disturbing images of women and girls participating in pornography, music videos and sexual images that the girls themselves post. Because of the Kardashian gang and others, young girls believe that taking sexually explicit pictures of themselves and posting them to become an"internet personality" and getting paid is a valid career alternative. The combination of this trend along with the exposure of young kids to pornography on the internet does not bode well for healthy relationships in the future. Women, as a group need to be way more aggressive in calling out the problems with social media. You can't applaud the Kardashian gang as trend setting businesswomen and then fail to call them and others to task on the messages they are sending to young girls. So far, they seem to be getting away with becoming rich with no sense of responsiblity.

Posted by Gary Patton on 12/05/2017 at 6:48 PM

Re: “Food Handlers Cafe Merges Restaurant with Classroom

Wonderful article Rauch. You and your wife keep doing what you're doing. God bless you all.

Posted by Robynn Holloway on 12/05/2017 at 1:48 PM

Re: “Peralta Faculty and Laney Students Vote to Oppose New A's Stadium Plan

This is going to make traffic so much worse in Oakland. Commute times and crowded bart trains are already bad enough.

Posted by princessvee on 12/05/2017 at 12:36 PM

Re: “Town Business: City Workers Plan to Strike, and Oakland's Affordable Housing Fees Slow to Raise Money

Police and Fire uniformed employees are not allowed to strike by State law, but under a special Oakland charter provision unique to police and fire , all police and fire personnel issues including compensation are subject to binding arbitration. In practice, that means that OFD and OPD uniformed employees get paid the same as other Bay Area cities.

That same binding arbitration too often results in "split the baby" decisions on discipline matters with police officers, regardless of the source of the underlying complaint.

The arbitrator's decision overrules all police department and police review board discipline decisions.

Contract renewal time is the only chance the City will have until next contract time to negotiate clear, specific conduct standards for police officers so that the arbitrators have guidelines to either uphold discipline or overrule the discipline orders.

Posted by Len Raphael on 12/05/2017 at 12:06 PM

Re: “Meet Jerusalem’s Biggest Hipster: Victoria Hanna

Hipster? What's this have to do with being a hipster?

Posted by Vincent Blafard on 12/05/2017 at 10:43 AM

Re: “Free Salame-Topped Cheesecake and More: Gallo Celebrates Its Centennial

My uncle George owned gallo till he died can i get some free salami my name is tom Ramsey i live in Oregon now at 100 E Carolina apt# B1 Lebanon Oregon 97355 it has been a long time since ive had some good salami anything would be appreciated thank you and happy holidays

Posted by Tommy Ramsey on 12/05/2017 at 10:08 AM

Re: “Town Business: City Workers Plan to Strike, and Oakland's Affordable Housing Fees Slow to Raise Money

At the end of the day, you can't squeeze orange juice from a rock. The bottom line is that the City of Oakland is broke. For workers to expect to be among the highest paid public employees in the bay area is delusional. A 4 % initial and retroactive salary increase seems to me to be fair. To connect future raises to revenue projections seems to be a fiscally responsible approach.My question is where was the fiscal responsibility when the budget adopted in June of this year included no money for employee raises? Why would you do that unless you wanted to use that omission as a future bargaining tool to limit the scope of upcoming labor agreements. In my view, both city management and the union employees need a dose of reality. First of all, every time there is a budget problem in Oakland, the cuts seem to always be made at the lower staff levels. The city always seem to have money for high paid unnecessary managers in the Mayor and City Administrators offices. If times are tough Mayor Schaaf, you and Ms Landreth need start by looking around your tables and making some cuts. I read that the Asst City Administrator is retiring. There is one unnecessary position that does not need to be filled. That alone would save over 200 K a year. I am sure there are other high paid unnecessary managers organization wide who could disappear and nobody would know the difference.The bottom line would get much more bang for the buck if some of that level of staff came off the payroll. Secondly, as a group, City of Oakland employees are far from being the best motivated efficient and competent group in the bay area. There are some good employees, but the lack of leadership and proper training over time has left many who do the minimum and expect to get paid like top performers. Beyond the past and continuing inept bungling of the Ghost Ship fire issues, ask anybody you know who resides in Oakland. Whenever you contact the City about a problem, you can generally expect that your experience will not be good. What you get are bad attitudes, people who do not return calls, can't explain or don't know the policies and usually there is no follow up. Your salary should be commensurate with your performance and City of Oakland employees generally are far from the top in comparison with other cities. These folks need take the 4% retroactive for 2 years, negotiate the language of future adjustments now or later and get back to work..

Posted by Gary Patton on 12/05/2017 at 9:33 AM

Re: “Cheeseboard Alumni Launch Dimond Slice Pizza

Don't use the CB name to promote other businesses that are trying to copy CB. Do your journalism.

Posted by zetetic on 12/04/2017 at 11:21 PM

Re: “Monday Must Reads: Brown to Endorse Schaaf for Mayor of Oakland; Governor Rakes in Millions for Ballot Measures

This lady is tough, consistent, stands up for Oakland and really works hard on crime and homeless problems. She gets my vote and I don't live in Oakland. Best thing that has happened for Oakland in a very long time.

Posted by RLT on 12/04/2017 at 9:40 PM

Re: “Town Business: City Workers Plan to Strike, and Oakland's Affordable Housing Fees Slow to Raise Money

Oakland is a tough City to work in. There are too few staff to meet City Council/Mayor demands. We are paid less than our counterpoints in other Bay Area cities and have been for years. "Wait until next contract" is what we hear every time. Well, no more.

Posted by Veritegrity on 12/04/2017 at 8:32 PM

Re: “Alameda Health Systems Removes License Plate Reader Surveillance Camera from Highland Hospital in Oakland

Kudos and thanks to Privacy advocate and researcher Mike Katz-Lacabe !!!

Posted by Amelie Love on 12/04/2017 at 6:21 PM

Re: “Town Business: City Workers Plan to Strike, and Oakland's Affordable Housing Fees Slow to Raise Money

The City of Oakland affordable housing ordinance adopted last year was as much of a joke as the budget the Republicans are trying to ram through Congress. The City of Oakland politicians knew as far back as 2006 that they could never collect enough fees to even begin to address the affordable housing needs. The only way to make sure that affordable units are built is to require them to be built alongside and at the same time as market rate projects. As one reader noted, the creation of zones did absolutely nothing. s A 2006 study concluded that the only places where land values can support new construction of affordable units is in the downtown, Broadway corridor, Montclair, Temescal and Rockridge neighborhoods. The City Council did not have the balls to take on those neighborhoods in 2006 and 10 years later the current ordinance again fails to deal with the issues for what they really are. The development community does not want to build in affordability into their projects, white neighbors in those neighborhoods don't want it and there is nobody in City Hall, including the Mayor who will fight for it. Look at what happned at E12th st last year. The Mayor and City Council actually broke the law in order to circumvent the affordability issues for a project there. It was only after the neighborhood outrage became too loud and EBX surfaced a cautionary letter from the City Attorney that the project was modified to include affordable housing. The City of Oakland cannot even coordinate building and fire inspections to keep people from dying in unsafe warehouses. Do you really think they will collect 7 million dollars from developers who have units in the ground already completed? What kind of a scam ordinance allows developers to proceed with construction and promise to pay later? This has as much chance for success as trickle down economics.

Posted by Gary Patton on 12/04/2017 at 3:43 PM

Re: “Town Business: City Workers Plan to Strike, and Oakland's Affordable Housing Fees Slow to Raise Money

I live in East Oakaland and truth be told, I don't see much in the way of building going on. Why is it significant that the fees don't kick in for another 8 months or so?

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 12/04/2017 at 3:14 PM

Re: “Why Derick Almena Deserves the Most Scorn

The only thing deserving of "scorn" here are people like you - Robert Gammon (a journalist I used to respect) - who, rather than investigate a story, decide it's easier to stick to the status quo and continue to heap blame where you find it easiest. Almena, the media villain, deserving of all of your self-righteous scorn. You should be ashamed, and please stay away from this story and our community's grief. You are not worthy of commenting on this matter anymore.

Posted by ConnorMorrison on 12/04/2017 at 11:59 AM

Re: “Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf on President Trump: 'Move Beyond Anger to Action'

Robert Appeldorn nobody EVER said they hate Trump because he's a man and he's white... Nobody... ever... A fool or a damn liar. Which one are you?

Posted by Rudi Mwongozi on 12/04/2017 at 10:48 AM

Re: “Cat-sturbating

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Posted by EDEN HAZARD on 12/04/2017 at 8:14 AM

Re: “Evictions After Ghost Ship

Key word: UNPERMITTED (not actually a word, but this is EBX).

Posted by Garry Ovalbach on 12/03/2017 at 5:49 PM

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