An item incorrectly reported the amount San Lorenzo Unified School District would pay for Canada geese abatement services. The contract is for $9,000 a year.
City residents are being asked to become the first line of defense against the scourge of illegal dumping in Oakland.
The city's recently launched Illegal Dumping Enforcement Action initiative relies on photos and videos taken by residents to help authorities punish people who fill the streets of East and West Oakland with mattresses, furniture, construction waste and run-of-the-mill trash.
Evidence submitted to the city is being reviewed by the City Attorney's Office community law unit, which so far has cited about a dozen people for illegal dumping.
In one recent case, the city fined one dumper $6,000 in connection with two incidents caught on a resident's security camera.
In 2011, Oakland spent $3.2 million to clean up more than 1,600 tons of garbage dumped on city streets and sidewalks. Richmond, by comparison, spent about $1.1 million during the same year.
Next month, City Attorney Barbara Parker is scheduled to propose increasing penalties for illegal dumping, making it a misdemeanor crime as opposed to an infraction, and allowing some violators to perform community service instead of paying fines.
To report illegal dumping, call Public Works Agency Call Center at 510-615-5566, email email@example.com or sign up for SeeClickFix at www.seeclickfix.com/oakland. The city advises people to photograph the license plates of vehicles used with illegal dumping, and that reports include the incident's date, time and location.
Geese are still costly for San Lorenzo
San Lorenzo Unified will continue shelling out $9,000 a month to pay for dogs to shoo away Canada geese that enjoy hanging out on the district's fields.
The school board voted this week to continue using the services of local Loose's Goose Control in the coming school year, a company first tapped for geese abatement in 2002.
"The geese come over from the Duck Pond in San Lorenzo and leave TONS of really large droppings on the athletic fields and the kids have to play on it," Superintendent Dennis Byas said in an email. He said that though the newer synthetic fields will fare better, the district is also looking into a sound system to scare them away and artificial dogs to keep on the fields.
Arroyo High School used a plastic coyote at one point, until it was stolen.
Retiring schools chief will stay a little longer
Dennis Byas, superintendent of San Lorenzo Unified School District since 2007, planned to retire at the end of August but will stick around for an extra month.
Byas announced his retirement in late May but had not submitted his retirement paperwork when the board hired executive search firm The Cosca Group to find a replacement.
School board President Norman Fobert said after talking with the firm, it became apparent the selection process wouldn't conclude before Byas' departure. Rather than hire an interim superintendent, Byas will stay until Oct. 1.
"That sounds like a better idea than an interim," Fobert said.
The district hopes to narrow the field to three to five superintendent candidates by Aug. 28 and make a selection by Sept. 9, he said.
The board decided to postpone hiring a replacement for the assistant superintendent of human resources, instead leaving it to the new superintendent. An interim assistant superintendent from outside the district was hired for the position in July, Fobert said.