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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: News

Re: “Group Calls for Oakland Animal Services to Lower Euthanasia Rate, But Administrators and Allies Say Shelter is Best it’s Been in Years

As a former volunteer whose plans to return have been dashed due to current mismanagement, I am heartbroken. Director Katz showed great promise upon her arrival at OAS which makes its present irresponsible conduct that much harder to swallow. I don't doubt that cats and smaller dogs are being rescued at a quick pace, but big dogs, esp. pit bulls, do not seem to be given a fair shot. Expert behaviorists and evaluators should be a core element in a shelter--they literally make life or death decisions. A robust foster program and support for foster parents is also a key element that is missing. I am disappointed, disgusted and heartbroken and hope Katz will quickly shake off her shocking negligence of Oakland's homeless dogs and engage in constructive dialogue with her critics.

Posted by Stephanie Rubin on 08/08/2017 at 11:40 PM

Re: “Group Calls for Oakland Animal Services to Lower Euthanasia Rate, But Administrators and Allies Say Shelter is Best it’s Been in Years

I pull dogs from OAS for rescue's and have seen a huge improvement in the dogs from OAS coming out of the shelter in much better condition during Rebecca Katz' tenure at OAS. 3-5 years ago, almost every dog I pulled from OAS was very sick with kennel cough, Giardia, pneumonia and worse - it was awful. The last year has gotten so much better, almost every dog I pull has been healthy. Last weekend I helped pull 24 dogs to go on transport up to Embrace a Discarded Animal Society - in Washington and none of the dogs were sick. That would have never been the case 3-4 years ago.

I also foster for the shelter and the last two dogs I fostered were spayed /neutered, fully vaccinated and microchipped by the shelter vet, prior to coming to my home. This also never used to be the case.

In my opinion, while the shelter is still not perfect, it's much better than it has ever been in the past 7 years that I have been involved with them. The entire management team and all of the current volunteers seem very committed to doing right by the animals and improving the conditions for the animals while they are in their care. This is just my humble opinion, but I've seen vast improvements in the last 2-3 years.
Cindy Douglas
Volunteer
Paws Crossed Small Dog Rescue

Posted by Cindy Douglas on 08/07/2017 at 10:18 PM

Re: “Oakland Rallies Around Owner of Henry's Gallery Café, Who Recently Lost His Business and Life's Savings

So... It seems EBX is ONLY concerned by wrong doing by the OPD, not wrongs done IO the community BY the community. Nor, it would seem, is the city council the EBX sockpuppets for.

In this same "issue" I see one member of the council is up for corruption and EBX is ONLY concerned about the amount needed for the defense.

Not a word from EBX on the swarm attacks or general lawlessness in the streets of Oakland.

VERY community oriented EBX.

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 08/07/2017 at 9:33 PM

Re: “East Bay Paratransit Bus System Leaves Drivers Broke and Riders Often Stranded

I worked at the Alta Bates campus in berkeley about 7-10 years ago. This was the same at that time. Obviously there needs to be changes made, but nothing is going to happen anytime soon. Until the owners are ready to make the changes, unfortunately these problems will not get addressed. SMH I feel so sorry for the people who have to depend on these agencies to get where they need to go. Maybe an agency needs to supply thr people who need transport, vouchers for Lyft..I bet they would get better service!

Posted by Ingrid Sweet on 08/05/2017 at 11:27 AM

Re: “East Bay Paratransit Bus System Leaves Drivers Broke and Riders Often Stranded

A neighbor in my building needs kidney dialysis 3X a week. She can barely walk to get to the front door of our building, much less hike to bus stops and walk from bus stops to her dialysis clinic. Increasingly, however, she ends up sitting in our lobby for an hour or more and then gets a call from AC Paratransit telling her no paratransit bus is going to show up. By this time, she is late for her appointment but still needs the dialysis so she suffers her way to a bus stop and from the bus stop to her clinic. She reports this is becoming almost the norm, that more and more she just gets told, after waiting a very long time, that the bus aint coming.

It does seem peculiar to me that a foreign company is not only managing this local, publicly funded service but that this company is doing such an inadequate job. The workers deserve a living wage and affordable health care, as drivers for other public transit systems receive, and the riders deserve an operating system that picks them up within reasonable wait times. Shame shame shame on the folks who outsourced this and did not negotiate meaningful public oversight of how the public money is spent.

Posted by Tree Fitzpatrick on 08/04/2017 at 11:11 AM

Re: “Court-Appointed Monitor Who Oversees Oakland Police Department Could Have Blocked Controversial Promotions — but He Didn’t.

Ms. Guap (not her real name) was an UNDERAGE prostitute and every cop that had sex with her knew she was under age and had illegal sex with her anywat, using their positional power over a legal child. Some of the pigs used her to make money, pimping her out. Bruce Ferrell's comment questions that she was an underage, legal child as if to shift some of the resopnsible onto the legal child and as if Ferrell wants to defend the cops who used her. Ms. Guap received a million dollars from the City of Oakland for the way she was used and abused by Oakland cops. There no excuse for anyone to have sex with an underage person but esp. cops who are tasked with enforcing the law instead of flouting it.

Posted by Tree Fitzpatrick on 08/04/2017 at 10:44 AM

Re: “Oakland Rallies Around Owner of Henry's Gallery Café, Who Recently Lost His Business and Life's Savings

The GoFundMe campaign mentioned is here: https://www.gofundme.com/HenrysGalleryCafe

Posted by brent_noorda on 08/02/2017 at 10:38 AM

Re: “Oakland Rallies Around Owner of Henry's Gallery Café, Who Recently Lost His Business and Life's Savings

This article makes no sense. 2007+5=2012, 2012+5+2017. They did exercise their option to extend. It also states in April that they were told to look for a new space. While I sympathize, there is nothing illegal happening here on the landlord's part.

Posted by Simone Furey on 08/01/2017 at 12:04 PM

Re: “Oakland Rallies Around Owner of Henry's Gallery Café, Who Recently Lost His Business and Life's Savings

I've met Jung and Park many times. They are lovely - always happy and helpful. I hope they are able to find a new location.

Posted by Jim Willows on 08/01/2017 at 11:49 AM

Re: “Young Professionals Only? Housemates Accuse Landlord of Rejecting Subtenant Applications in Hopes of Vacating Rent-Controlled Unit.

It is unfortunate that the landlady did not select less contentious language to work through this common situation. She should hire a property manager to keep from making rookie mistakes. There are other ways to handle this occupancy shift without antagonizing her tenants. The right of continuance in the home is only extended to the original tenants. The replacement tenants cannot continue once the original tenants depart. This is placed as a signed addendum to the lease. The landlady does not accept money from the replacement tenants she approves their occupancy, but not their tenancy. the original tenants are made responsible for collecting their housemates rent and turn in a single , prompt rent payment. The tenants appoint one person to contact the landlady on non emergent maintenance issues and keep their tenancy on an even keel. The Landlady can refuse to assign occupancy and patiently wait for her tenants to leave, but good luck getting over the vacancy loss and turn costs. With all the new apartments coming online in the East Bay I don't envy her position. Glad to be only handling my own properties these days and not working for landlords like her.

Posted by Codacraft on 08/01/2017 at 1:40 AM

Re: “The Oakland Fence Saga

This matter is a perfect example of why the City of Oakland is dysfunctional, inefficient and unable to generally provide services that reasonable duty would warrant to its taxpayers. This reveals an agentic culture which lives in silos filled with excuses ready to defer responsibility yet protect egregiously ballooned public salaries.

Josh: What is the latest of this gulag in a Catch22?

Why does the City feel it needs to discourage citizen proactivity and quash contributions like this?

When will this change?
A: just after Musk finishes tunneling Hyperloops to LA, NY and DC, when he launches his first flying pigs.

Posted by Bennett Hall on 07/28/2017 at 10:41 AM

Re: “Young Professionals Only? Housemates Accuse Landlord of Rejecting Subtenant Applications in Hopes of Vacating Rent-Controlled Unit.

I can see both sides of this story -- that of the tenants who just want to get a new roommate, and that of the landlord, who just wants to control her own property. Both points of view have merit, but I believe that a person who owns a building can and should have more rights to decide who they rent to, than other renters in the building. AFter all it's not the renters who are renting out the bedroom, it's the landlord doing so. And she should be perfectly free to accept or turn down as many renters as she wants, without having to give a reason why.

The way I view this, if a landlord rents to a group of people, then if one of those moves out, she shouldn't have to rent the vacant room to anyone at all. If she wants to just leave it vacant and ask the remaining renters to make up the difference, that is her perogative as building owner. Her business contract was with the original group, and she's not obligated to enter into a new contract with anyone. Once all the members of that group leave, she can consider renting to another group, but it doesn't seem fair to require her to rent to anyone new while any members of the current group are still in residence.

PEople can and will throw around the word "discrimination", but as I see it, all that is doing is allowing renters to say "we have more ownership rights to your building than you do as the owner of the building." No. I see a lot of such fights going on now -- regarding who really owns the building, the tenants or the landlord -- and I think we have to resolve this with common sense and say no, it's not the tenants.

Moral of the story -- if you want control over your housing, it's good to be an owner and not a renter. I support creating more opportunities for tenants-in-common arrangements so more people who are now renters, can become owners or partner-owners of a property.

by the way...anyone paying $400 or even $600 in monthly rent nowadays in the Bay Area, should count themselves lucky rather than contact the media to complain about their landlord.

Posted by Alice Marshall on 07/27/2017 at 11:39 PM

Re: “East Bay Paratransit Bus System Leaves Drivers Broke and Riders Often Stranded

Sounds like a pretty typical outsourced, unsupervised operation. As public operations the Transit agencies that outsourced this need to be called to account for this and perhaps a revue of the contracts they've let to see if they were even plausible given the services to be provided.... And of course, as always, follow the money.

Who wants to make bets on investors in the French company?

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 07/27/2017 at 6:52 PM

Re: “East Bay Paratransit Bus System Leaves Drivers Broke and Riders Often Stranded

Paratransit was mandated by the ADA, so it ought to be operated by a governmental agency. Clearly the private sector is not up to the job. And why is it being run by a foreign company anyway? How about investigating giving the contract to Lyft?

Posted by jvla2 on 07/27/2017 at 2:30 PM

Re: “Young Professionals Only? Housemates Accuse Landlord of Rejecting Subtenant Applications in Hopes of Vacating Rent-Controlled Unit.

That's why you have a lease agreement, not month to month.

Posted by michael.sagehorn on 07/27/2017 at 2:10 PM

Re: “Young Professionals Only? Housemates Accuse Landlord of Rejecting Subtenant Applications in Hopes of Vacating Rent-Controlled Unit.

Mr. Mitchell- I'm with you. You own it- you decide who you can trust to meet their rent payment. It's not complicated. It's business. As more folks recognize that renting puts you at the mercy and discretion of a building owner in a rising real estate market, at some point you either have to change your housing situation to a homeowner OR move.

Posted by michael.sagehorn on 07/27/2017 at 2:06 PM

Re: “Young Professionals Only? Housemates Accuse Landlord of Rejecting Subtenant Applications in Hopes of Vacating Rent-Controlled Unit.

Well Mr. Blafard, All the emotional rants I now see are just you with your panties in a knot. Of course if you want to be saved by socialism it just goes to show what little initiative you have. Now if you are a struggling writer or some such thing is it up to a property owner to subsidize your rent? Apparently that is where you are!

Posted by Mike Mitchell on 07/27/2017 at 11:47 AM

Re: “East Bay Paratransit Bus System Leaves Drivers Broke and Riders Often Stranded

I worked in the Radiology dept some years ago. I observed, in horror, as the elderly and disabled waited, sometimes hours, after their CT and/or Ultrasounds scans. In many cases they hadn't had anything to eat or drink, because of the prep for the test. I would call paratransit on a regular basis to confirm patient pick up. It was a nightmare for me to get someone from paratransit on the phione.. A much bigger nightmare for those just trying to get home.

Posted by Kalliope Bellesis on 07/27/2017 at 8:48 AM

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