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Comment Archives: stories: Blogs

Re: “Chinatown's New Tiki Bar The Kon-Tiki Nears Grand Opening

This is for the "New Oakland," Steven.

Posted by Vincent Blafard on 11/13/2017 at 9:54 AM

Re: “Friday’s Briefing: OUSD Overspent by Millions on Admin and Consultants; Half of Bay Area Renters Are ‘Economically Burdened’

Screwed doesnt begin to describe it. Squeezed between a ravenous charter machine that just wants to cannibalize the district and turn it into a NOLA of the West, and a comically wasteful and aimless leadership group. Look at similar sized districts in CA and other large metro areas. Usually management layer is only 2 levels deep before you get to real work done. Here in Oakland you will see a top layer and a host of acolytes getting easy six figure salaries doing nothing but passing the buck to the grunts at the bottom. Then you have silos in each dept that just look to 'survive' the 2 year superintendent cycle. Nothing really gets done and money gets wasted in ethereal projects and relocations that overall have little impact on the teachers and students. Contractor management and ethics are a joke, with little oversight on funds being spent on dubious projects. Antwan Wilson exemplified this... He came to fertile soil for him and his cronies. But we blame the guy that left and not ourselves for exposing ourselves to such risk... Really the elected officials have been incompetent at best, negligent for sure and some of them may be compromised by political donors. The level of negligence at the union level is also worth noting. No one holds the ultimate fault in this situation, but in order to survive OUSD is going to need a new political pact with the whole city that focuses on long term (50-100 year plan) survivability and a more robust ethical bent on the district bylaws. For too long the board has been utilized as a political springboard and I think in the current political climate the system is ripe for hijacking and misuse. There is great talent in OUSD, and great impetus for serving all students, and bridging gaps for the underserved, it just hurts to see all that good energy negated and thrown away by longstanding inneficiencies and political stagnation.

Posted by oaklanders in exile on 11/13/2017 at 8:55 AM

Re: “Chinatown's New Tiki Bar The Kon-Tiki Nears Grand Opening

Tiki is great, but Oakland is dying. $13 cocktails are the beginning of the end.

Posted by Steven Clarke on 11/12/2017 at 5:55 PM

Re: “Updated: Oakland Pot Union Bribery Scandal Exposed

Dawg's a runner

Posted by moleman510cee0 on 11/12/2017 at 3:29 PM

Re: “Chilli Padi, the East Bay's Only Malaysian Restaurant, Closes

Taste of Sing Ma in Pleasanton is better.

Posted by Jean Komatsu 1 on 11/12/2017 at 2:21 PM

Re: “Friday’s Briefing: OUSD Overspent by Millions on Admin and Consultants; Half of Bay Area Renters Are ‘Economically Burdened’

There is way too many positions in the OAL athletic department. All you need is 1 good commissioner that knows what he is doing. That is how it has always been. Start cutting there first.

Posted by Savethemoney on 11/11/2017 at 9:16 PM

Re: “Friday’s Briefing: OUSD Overspent by Millions on Admin and Consultants; Half of Bay Area Renters Are ‘Economically Burdened’

Before making any cuts to the already stressed local schools, the OUSD Board should order the new Supt. to send out layoff notices to every HQ employee and notify consultants/constants of an economic emergency that will require re-negotiation if they want to do business with OUSD in the future.

OUSD should hurry up and fill the CFO and Internal Auditor positions that have been vacant for over a year.

Find your board member. Call AND email them before they've decided how they will vote in two weeks.

https://www.ousd.org/findyourdirector


Len Raphael, CPA
Temescal

Posted by Len Raphael on 11/11/2017 at 8:50 PM

Re: “Oakland Looks to Close Owner Move-In and Occupancy Loopholes, Reduce Evictions and Harmful Rent Increases

I'm a landlord with just one small unit. Virtually all of my tenants have been richer than I am. The idea that I should pay the guy who makes 4x what I do every year "a substantial amount" to relocate so I can move my elderly mother in is preposterous!

The assistance should be based on need and shared equally by the whole community the way that "food stamps" are. I'm happy to pay my share but yu don't expect Safeway or the corner market to sell people food at the same price they did 20 years ago so why am I singled out?

Posted by GingerAnn Summers-Grant on 11/11/2017 at 11:56 AM

Re: “Former Chez Panisse Chef David Tanis Releases Cookbook Inspired by the Farmers' Market

This book is worth the price of the meal. Love this book!

Posted by Joe Zahner on 11/10/2017 at 1:46 PM

Re: “Citing Possible School Closures and Fiscal Problems, Oakland School Board Denies New Charter School Petition

Same old same old. The people who profit from public schools want more funding. The best schools in Oakland are charter. And probably the worst. What Oakland needs to do is close another 1/3 of its schools, there simply is no need for them. They eat up too many resources to teach too few students.

Posted by Ernest Montague on 11/10/2017 at 9:38 AM

Re: “Oakland Landlord Beefs with City, Calls for 'No More Homeless Camps,' with Halloween Decorations

These comments are unbelievable. Obviously they are coming from people that so not pay much in the way of taxes that most functioning people do,

Posted by Jerry Howe on 11/10/2017 at 1:23 AM

Re: “Alameda's Boichik Bagels is a Game-Changer

Good luck Emily. I ran a cottage food biz for a couple years in Santa Rosa, not just bagels but a variety of Jewish style breads, challah, rye (with sourdough), bialys, bagels, challah, babka. Its hard making a profit because the basic expenses of water and energy run high, so you need high volume, hard to accomplish if youre the sole baker. Youll have delivery expenses too, just gas alone. Finding clients who will pay the premium price if $3@ for a small bagel will be a challenge. All the best of luck to you!
Joy (formerly NJoybread!)

Posted by Joy Danzig on 11/09/2017 at 10:06 PM

Re: “Citing Possible School Closures and Fiscal Problems, Oakland School Board Denies New Charter School Petition

Too little too late OUSD school board, time for a recall!

Posted by Susan Larion-Townsend on 11/09/2017 at 8:29 PM

Re: “Wednesday’s Briefing: Democrats Score Big Victories; Majority of Oaklanders Like Laney Ballpark Site

So I am supposed to believe that a poll commissioned by the Chamber of Commerce concluded that 62% of Oakland residents support the ballpark at the Laney site. That statistic and it's conclusion are both ridiculous. However, there is no explanation of the statistical data underlying the poll or any idea what questions were asked and who was asked. The number was obviously extrapolated from a much smaller sample size and it would be instructive to know who those people are. My gut tells me that of course the folks in Temescal, Rockridge, North Hills and Montclair neighborhoods would love to run down to the Laney site to go to a ballgame. After all, they would then never need to drive through East Oakland, unless they are on their way to the Airport, to see how the rest of the City lives. Many of the folks in Central East Oakland do not care about the A's or where the ballpark is located.Many do not speak English and others are too focused on raising their kids and keeping the lights on. They don't have extra money to go to sporting events, no matter where the stadium is built. I find this article irresponsible and just an early sign of the public relations campaign that the A's have embarked on in order to politically crush the legitimate objections of folks in the East Lake neighborhood.

Posted by Gary Patton on 11/09/2017 at 4:48 PM

Re: “Oakland Council Approves Giant Oak Knoll Project, But Without Affordable Housing or a Project Labor Agreement for Most Construction Workers

...Riiiight!!! Delay the vote and keep new housing off the inventory so the housing crisis worsens.

Got to love them!

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 11/09/2017 at 2:40 PM

Re: “Wednesday’s Briefing: Democrats Score Big Victories; Majority of Oaklanders Like Laney Ballpark Site

The sponsor of the poll does not in itself invalidate the poll. But, I agree that the language cited in the Chron does look a little push-poll-y. It would be helpful to see the actual script along with crosstabs and toplines.

Posted by robbsmithideas on 11/09/2017 at 10:34 AM

Re: “Wednesday’s Briefing: Democrats Score Big Victories; Majority of Oaklanders Like Laney Ballpark Site

Uh "commissioned by the Oakland Chamber of Commerce" hmm a push poll?

Posted by Naomi_Schiff on 11/09/2017 at 10:12 AM

Re: “Tuesday’s Briefing: Air Force Failed to Block Shooter From Buying Guns; Almena Says Ghost Ship Owner Shares Blame

At the end of the day, there is no doubt that Almena shares in the blame for the tragedy that ocurred at the Ghost Ship warehouse. With that being said, there is also no doubt that both the property owner (Ng) and the City of Oakland are also liable. A property owner cannot claim ignorance of what physical conditions exist and what uses occur on a property that he or she owns. The owner has a duty to make sure that the property is in safe condition for the activities that occur there under the lease or rent. Similarly, the City of Oakland has a duty, once they have notice of building, zoning and public safety violations, to make sure that these are corrected. That is especially true when it comes to life safety issues like sprinklers and fire exits.
It is a matter of record that Code Enforcement, Building Inspection and Fire Department staff had all been to the site on numerous occasions prior to the fire. In fact, it has been reported that several firefighters had actually attended events hosted there by Almena. Without question, the City of Oakland is liable for civil penalties, which the families of those who perished will undoubtedly pursue.They are also liable for criminal penalties as their negligence and failure to either close down the warehouse or at least have in place an aggressive compliance plan is inexcusable. I don't know what kind of deal the District Attorney has with Mayor Schaaf, but she needs to do her job and charge ALL responsible parties, including the property owner (Ng) and the City.

Posted by Gary Patton on 11/09/2017 at 8:51 AM

Re: “Oakland Council Approves Giant Oak Knoll Project, But Without Affordable Housing or a Project Labor Agreement for Most Construction Workers

The Oak Knoll development is the biggest and most diverse mixed use development Oakland has seen in modern times. The project will include a small commercial component as well as multiple family development and a range of single family products. It makes sense to include a provision that some affordable housing be developed here. Oak Knoll was originally it's own Redevelopment district and had an obligation to generate affordable housing either on site or elsewhere in a Redevelopment district. The City now has an affordable housing in lieu fee option on the books and as I understand the article, future developers will have to comply with that ordinance. The fire safety issue seems dubious. There are existing fire stations on 98th ave below the site (above MacArthur blvd) and on Skyline blvd above the site. The development will have non combustible roofing materials, new infrastructure will include new fire hydrants. Additionally, there are no wild land open space interface issues as exists in the Ridgemont development just north of the site off Campus drive. If there is any issue that the City Council continues to miss, it is the widening and realignment of 73rd Ave between I-580 and MacArthur blvd. Development of townhouses at Leona Quarry and Oak Knoll should have resulted in construction of this much needed public improvement. The new residents purchasing these homes had the potential to stimulate economic development opportunities along MacArthur blvd and return it to it's former life as an important commercial service corridor for residents of this part of East Oakland. But once again, there is no vision or leadership in City Hall. The dollars from these new residents will now be spent in San Leandro and the MacArthur corridor will continue to be a wasteland.

Posted by Gary Patton on 11/08/2017 at 9:46 AM

Re: “Tuesday’s Briefing: Air Force Failed to Block Shooter From Buying Guns; Almena Says Ghost Ship Owner Shares Blame

Almena created a fire trap there and rented it out to naive and deluded tenants who had no idea of personal safety. He is directly responsible for their deaths. I have no love for the owner, but he didn't rent the warehouse as living space. Almena did.

Posted by Ernest Montague on 11/08/2017 at 8:52 AM

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