Consider alternate use for Mif Albright
I have no opinion on the future of the Mif Albright golf course. If the course is closed though, I suggest the city explore the possibility of using these 12 acres as alternative source of energy for the city — this being a mini solar/wind plant would supply power for the club house, the restaurant, as well as the electric golf carts. The excess power generated by this system would be sent back to Alameda Power and Electric and used as a credit for other city buildings.
I realize that this is a small project, but think of the possibilities if this project worked, which I believe it could. Alameda has 750 acres out at the Point that very few people can agree upon as to what to do with it. I think we can keep the Point green and still generate income for the city. Five hundred acres could supply the city of Alameda and all of its residential/commercial buildings with enough power to sustain them.
The remaining acres could be used as parks, walking trails and returned to their natural habitat, along with keeping the buildings that are currently being used for the benefit of the city.
Of course the city would charge the customers, me and you, but it would be cheaper, it would be clean, and Alameda would be a model for other cities. I think it is worth the discussion.
Economy Lumber has heart
I want to share with readers something that Economy Lumber in Oakland did on April 24. They showed such heart and compassion for the city of Oakland and the day laborers who stand outside their business every day looking for work.
On April 24, they had a trade show and served a fabulous tri-tip barbecue lunch — not hot dogs! They graciously served everyone who came — even all those hungry men looking for work. I applaud their generosity and kind spirit.
May people in the Bay Area take note of what the management at Economy Lumber did.
Susan and Denny Burke
Disappointed in care facilities
My father was a resident of Alameda for 58 years, having built his house on Post Street following World War II service as a submariner. He loved this town where he raised his family, served as a distinguished citizen, and was loved by the families on his block. After a recent hospitalization and coping with advanced dementia, he was prescribed custodial care.
Imagine our shock when we found that no Alameda care center would accept him. After reviewing his case, the response was always the same: "He is not appropriate for our facility."
We discovered that care centers have no obligation to take even paying patients, that they can cherry-pick their patients, and that they are not required to give any reason for refusal.
My father was not able to spend his dying days in the town he called home, where his family and friends could visit him easily. Yes, he was a difficult patient at the end. But that is when the health care system is most needed. This is an insult to a wonderful man who gave so much to his country and his community. Alameda elders deserve better.
Carpet baggers out for NAS
Watch out, Alameda. The carpet baggers are on the loose again out at the old Naval Air Station. They're after Measure A (again). To quote them: "Alameda NAS is contaminated and in disrepair." No kidding.
To them, their idea of cleaning up a contaminated area would be likened to putting clean sheets on a dirty bed.
History repeating itself?
In her April 24 column ("Let's Revisit Measure A"), Eve Pearlman states that the measure was "created in reaction to a crisis that has long since passed."
Long since passed? Measure A was the public's reaction to a City Council that seemed to care more about developers than the people who elected them. If Mayor Johnson's recent robo-calls on behalf of SunCal are any indication, history seems to be repeating itself.
Make your voice heard on Alameda Point
A recent City Council agenda included discussion of the proposed Alameda Point Development Initiative.
Twenty-four Alamedans spoke against it. No Alamedans spoke in favor of it. The meeting began 7:42 p.m.; this item started at 9:37 p.m. By the time comments were allowed, many had left, due to the hour. Why aren't the hottest issues on City Council agendas given precedence?
Applause erupted for several passionate speakers with excellent mastery of the facts; Mayor Johnson advised that applause was unproductive. Councilmember DeHaan said the public ought to be livid. "We are livid!" we shouted. Other council members apologized that signature takers were "impolite." Did they grasp the salient concerns at all?
Paraphrased summary of concerns:
SunCal is already bankrupt in 23 projects in California. What is the contingency plan when SunCal goes bankrupt here?
SunCal may not develop the land, even if a deal is signed.
SunCal can sell development rights.
SunCal hasn't identified agency to provide public transit so central to its plan.
It's called a "citizens' initiative" but SunCal isn't a citizen, and has no stake in our quality of life.
Harassing, deceitful behavior of signature-gatherers: If SunCal's campaigners are deceitful about the initiative, what else are they dishonest about?
No Environmental Impact Report until after election.
Initiative includes unprecedented changes to Alameda's zoning, city charter, city plan, and rewrites the city's approval processes — just to make this deal work.
Unused commercial space is all over Alameda and downtown Oakland. Why build more now?
The initiative will be discussed again June 2 and June 21. It was great to speak up, get riled up, meet and support one another. Join Us! For notices of future events: NASnotices@gmail.com.
You can remove your signature
Recently I called the Alameda mayor's office to ask how citizens could remove their signatures from the SunCal ballot initiative that is being circulated around town by paid signature gatherers. First they were stationed at store entrances. Now they are going door to door collecting signatures.
I was told we must contact SunCal, the developer that wants to develop the Naval Air Station (Alameda Point). This did not sound right to me, and with some research I found the following information:
Actually, California law provides the way to withdraw your signature.
If you feel you were misled into signing it, you can send a letter to the Alameda City Clerk before the collected signatures are filed.
Your letter can be as simple as this:
"I realize now that I was misled when I signed the petition to support SunCal's Alameda Point Development Initiative. I do not support their initiative, and I would like the Alameda City Clerk to remove my name from this petition."
Sign your name and address and date the letter. To ensure delivery, send it return receipt requested, or hand deliver it to the city clerk and ask for a copy stamped "Received."
Send it to: City of Alameda, ATTN: City Clerk, 2263 Santa Clara Ave., Alameda, CA 94501.
Look beyond the advertisement
I recently examined the glossy brochure mailed to voters on behalf of SunCal (whose name is conspicuously absent) and found a masterpiece of misinformation and spin.
Fear mongering, questionable logic, leading questions, happy kids on bikes, it's got it all.
Just how is the Point "costing our city dearly"? There are fully functioning historical buildings with established businesses that will be demolished under SunCal's plan. These businesses pay rent to the city. The beautiful historic hangar buildings housing the Bladium sports facility, Hangar One Distillery, Delphi Productions (an exhibit fabricator), along with others will be demolished and replaced with commercial space with rent going to SunCal.
Think the rents will go up? Tell me what is sustainable about demolishing functional historic buildings. The missed profit opportunity is costing SunCal dearly.
Buildings containing lead and asbestos? Most older homes in Alameda contain lead paint, should we demolish them too? There are proven methods for dealing with lead paint and asbestos.
Open space and sports facilities already exist. Take a bike ride without all the traffic, use the soccer field or skateboard park, visit Bladium.
The real issue is that a mega-developer wants ownership and control of one of the most desirable large pieces of waterfront real estate in the Bay Area.
The project faces formidable toxics issues, plus millions of cubic yards of fill will need to be imported to raise low areas above rising sea levels. Certainly there are many buildings that should be replaced. But the all or none approach and the high density necessary are to pay for infrastructure to make huge profits SunCal expects from this golden opportunity.
Is the project good for Alameda, or simply good for SunCal? Get the facts SunCal doesn't advertise before you decide.
Clean up after your dog
I find myself wondering what is going on in Alameda that so many people find it socially acceptable to allow their dogs to poop on a lawn and walk away. Do the dog owners think that nobody will notice? That it will somehow be absorbed into the ground?
The past four straight days, I have come out of my house to put my three young children in the car, only to find poop on my lawn. Yesterday, I witnessed a woman leaving the scene. And although she was nice when called out to her come pick it up, I cannot fathom walking away guilt-free from my dog's poop.
I would never allow my children to poop on someone's lawn. I do not leave dirty diapers for the public to clean up. I find myself increasing amazed at the lack of courteousness dog owners seem to have.
I guess they don't realize that 90 percent of the time there is poop outside of a house (this includes the median), somebody inevitably steps in it.
If it is a child, they tend to walk all over the house smearing dog poop. Even if it doesn't get stepped in, someone else has to clean up after your pet. Dog waste does not magically disappear!
It is illegal to let your dog roam without a leash, and it is illegal to leave your dog poop on public or private property.
Please respect your neighbors and the law. Clean up your poop.