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Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

The Public Works department, like many, has seriously lacked competent people, systems and leadership for years. It is no surprise that they fail or under report sewer mitigation monitoring, this kind of willful manipulation of requirements or failure to disclose information to the public is business as usual to these people. In the mid 2000's, when confronted with the fact that they had mismanaged a parking contract by failing to collect millions of dollars for years at a city garage on Pill Hill (30th st), a Deputy Public Works Director responded by complaining that the information may become public. Really? Public Works staff in all areas reeks of incompetence and lack of leadership. It seems that the main priority for years has been to make as little noise as possible, keep getting paid and retire with full benefits as soon as possible. The former Public Works Director was not even a civil engineer and only had experience managing a creek program. Only in the City of Oakland is that even possible!

Posted by Gary Patton on 01/14/2018 at 10:59 AM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

Thank you so much Gabrielle Canon for writing this and other articles. Our NextDoor forum is discussing this. I made the following suggested reforms:
1. Restore Loren Little to his job as senior supervisor in the sewage department or make him the head. He was removed after becoming a whistleblower.
2. Get rid of Littles boss, the current sewage director Jason Mitchell, who transferred Little to the drainage department after he complained about sewage department practices
3. Recall or vote out City Auditor Brenda Roberts who didnt protect him, but instead notified his department, and he was suddenly transferred from sewage to drainage after 30 years.
4. Replace Oakland City Councilmember Annie Campbell Washington with someone more competent.
5. Andes Construction is spectacularly incompetent and should no longer receive the multi-million dollar contracts theyve received since 1986 whose work is so bad the sewage department often has to come back to actually fix the problem.
6. Make the sewer department fix the sewage running into Lake Temescal, and make them report the leaks to the public as they were mandated to do by the EPA
7. Get rid of the sewage department employees and supervisors who alter reports to underreport how much damage was done. When the city submits reports, department officials have to sign a certification statement under penalty of perjury. But Oakland has a history of failing to comply with regulatory standards and of underreporting sewage spills.

Gabrielle, or anyone else, have I missed anything? I've never received a reply, or acknowledgment of my letters from Dan Kalb the past few years, but he pays attention to NextDoor, and said "I have scheduled a staff report/response about these sewer-related problems to come to the City Councils Public Works Committee. Council members Campbell Washington and Guillen are co-sponsoring this with me." I asked him to do the above and keep us posted on nextdoor and his email list. Anything else I should add?

Posted by energyskeptic on 01/13/2018 at 7:23 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 surrendered one of my Pitts who had been involved in two incidents. He was 15 months old and had never displayed any aggressive tendencies until he observed his mother (not one of my dogs) fighting with a Chihuahua. Unfortunately that dog was killed.
I am not excusing his behavior but as any qualified Animal behaviorist will tell you it is natural for a puppy to emulate their mother. It doesnt make them a bad dog.
I surrendered him with the hope that he would be evaluated by an expert and then he would go to a rescue organization which I made clear to OAS.
They never evaluated him They never gave him a chance. They waited the mandatory 2 weeks and then euthanized him. They killed a wonderful dog whose only mistake was to emulate his first Alfas, (his mother)behavior.
What a waste.
Christine Brunner

Posted by Christine Brunneri on 01/11/2018 at 11:03 PM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

I find this utterly and outright baffling that in 2017/18, in supposedly one of the most environmentally conscious states (CA) in the Union, this disaster can not be mitigated and resolved appropriately!

Did I miss if calls have been made to appropriate representatives or senators?

Follow the money indeed, or lack thereof.

Posted by aknature on 01/11/2018 at 7:55 PM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

Amazing investigative work Gabrielle Canon!

Posted by Kristina Molina on 01/11/2018 at 9:43 AM

Re: “Oakland's Ability to Clamp Down on Blight Threatened

I am aware of that case, and do know that Oakland changed the process after it. And the process was draconian.

Posted by Ernest Montague on 01/11/2018 at 9:04 AM

Re: “Oakland's Ability to Clamp Down on Blight Threatened

This decision is unpublished, which means it only applies to Oakland. Otherwise it has no authority statewide. Translation: the Pacific Legal Foundation would have to sue each city that uses a hearing officer to fine blight violators and it can not cite this ruling by the First District Court of Appeal.

Posted by Dan Waterhouse on 01/11/2018 at 7:10 AM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

Is it true that we are living in the 21st century????
Sometimes I wonder!!!
I live in Australia and in some "outback" areas I thought we had problems.........apparently not, after reading this article!

Posted by John Barltrop on 01/11/2018 at 12:14 AM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

Id also like to know what ties this contractor has with the city or rather with WHOM. Why does Oakland pour our good money literally down the sewer time after time? Isnt anyone ever accountable? Consistently poor choices should be investigated and find out why the same poor decisions are being made!FOLLOW THE MONEY.

Posted by goldengate on 01/10/2018 at 8:17 PM

Re: “Oakland's Ability to Clamp Down on Blight Threatened

Hearsay but I have heard no one lost their job after that grand jury report.

Posted by Dinah Benson on 01/10/2018 at 7:35 PM

Re: “Et tu, Chucky?

The endless whining of sports fans is topped only by the endless whining of god fans--"Why have you forsaken me?"

Posted by MikeE on 01/10/2018 at 12:06 PM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

Councilwoman Annie Campbell Washington says her only duty when constituents ask for help is to refer them to someone else--kick the can down the road, in other words. That's a lousy politician, I'd say.

Posted by MikeE on 01/10/2018 at 11:58 AM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

Oakland residence are subject to years of incompetent do nothing leadership, a sewage problem is likely the tip of the iceberg. Please hold them accountable, they shouldn't continue to operate above the law.

Posted by bloggermom2 on 01/10/2018 at 9:38 AM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

I wonder who the contractor has ties to at the city to get that type of work. Oakland being Oakland....

Posted by Robert Hope on 01/10/2018 at 8:48 AM

Re: “The Truth About Medical Marijuana Card Privacy

Wow! What a Great Article Thanks Man! Great work! Really great info.
Keep up the great work!
Disadvantages of Weed

Posted by Muhammad Bilal Khan on 01/10/2018 at 4:00 AM

Re: “Broken Pipes, Broken System

Not the first time Mayorga has been mentioned in the EBX: https://www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/pro…

Posted by Ralph Kanz on 01/09/2018 at 8:11 PM

Re: “East Bay Lawyer Makes Domestic Abusers Pay

Although organization professes to assist victims of domestic violence, Alipato Project is actually representing an admitted abuser, Yousef Wally, who has repeatedly apologized for his violent behavior. Inexplicable.

Posted by Jason Cabot on 01/09/2018 at 7:29 PM

Re: “Oakland Police Chief's Troubles Resemble Those of Her Past

I suspect there will never be a Chief in which East Bay Express will write words of praise.

Posted by ed gerber on 01/05/2018 at 11:40 AM

Re: “Oakland Police Chief's Troubles Resemble Those of Her Past

Libby Schaaf was obviously embarrassed, angry and humiliated when she had to face the cameras about the corrupt male police officers under her authority. So she had a knee jerk, singular & gender-specific resolution hiring a female chief as a panacea. Very short sighted. Unfortunately, Schaaf inherited a free-for-all OPD hiring process allowing misfits to fill the ranks of a depleted department. Kirkpatrick has job security as long as Schaaf remains mayor. Schaaf isn't about to admit she made a mistake to fix a mistake.

Posted by mvigi1719 on 01/04/2018 at 10:51 PM

Re: “Oakland's Problem with Rogue Dispensaries

I loved First Hemp Bank. And there should be more than just six permits. That's why there's still drug dealers in the street. City politicians don't know how to handle their drugs.

Posted by William Torres on 01/04/2018 at 6:11 PM

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