EBC AGENDA | NOV 24-30 | OAKLAND probes ICE raid, remembers Ghost Ship; HAYWARD adopts ‘The Commitment’; BERKELEY examines Measure GG

THE WEEK OF NOVEMBER 24-30

–OAKLAND– Special council meeting, Tuesday, Nov. 28, 5:30 p.m. [ENTIRE AGENDA HERE]
–OPD/ICE PROBE– A likely volatile discussion of the events surrounding the Aug. 16 ICE raid in West Oakland returns to the council agenda after being pulled in Rules two weeks ago. According to OPD, U.S. Homeland Security notified Oakland Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick that its agents would be conducting a criminal search warrant related to human trafficking. “Chief Kirkpatrick agreed that traffic control was advisable to ensure both officer and public safety,” according to the report. “Chief Kirkpatrick provided strict instructions that OPD personnel were not to engage in any other capacity. On the morning of August 16, 2017, OPD deployed one sergeant and two officers to the area of the HSI operation in West Oakland. The assigned OPD personnel were directed to provide traffic control only. OPD personnel were directed to take no part in the efforts undertaken by HSI.” The event, however, resulted in one undocumented immigrants being detained. Further complicating the incident is the council voted this summer to cut all ties with ICE.

–SUBSTANTIAL REHAB MORATORIUM– Councilmembers Dan Kalb and Rebecca Kaplan want an 180-day moratorium on landlords seeking new petitions for substantial rehabilitation exemptions. “Before an exemption is granted, the current regulations require an owner to spend a minimum of 50 percent of the average basic cost for new construction and perform substantial work in each of the units in the building.”

–“The purpose of the exemption is to encourage private investment in deteriorated residential units in Oakland. However, numerous residents have recently complained to the Oakland City Council and Housing, Residential Rent and Relocation Board that their rents will increase to unaffordable levels if recent petitions filed for the substantial rehabilitation exemption are granted and that this will lead to displacement.”

–SECOND READINGS– Over the past few weeks, Oakland councilmembers have passed first readings for some notable pieces of legislation. Tuesday night comes the second and final readings of ordinances pertaining to cannabis dispensaries and retail adult-use, along with Councilmember Abel Guillen‘s ordinance prohibiting contractors who perform any work on President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall from gaining city contracts in Oakland.

–GHOST SHIP REMEMBRANCE– On Dec. 2, 2016, 36 people lost their lives at a building fire on 31st Avenue, known as the Ghost Ship. “Nearly one year later, we acknowledge and honor the ongoing grief brought by the tragedy and that the City of Oakland continues to heal; now, therefore be it RESOLVED: That the City of Oakland remembers the Ghost Ship fire one year later with a moment of reflection and silence.”

Rules Committee meeting, Thursday, Nov. 30, 10:45 a.m. [ENTIRE AGENDA HERE]

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–HAYWARD– Regular council meeting, Tuesday, Nov. 28, 7 p.m. [ENTIRE AGENDA HERE]
–ADOPTION OF ‘THE COMMITMENT’– The next iteration of Hayward’s 1992 Anti-Discrimination Plan is now the “Commitment for an Inclusive, Equitable, and Compassionate Community (CIECC),” also referred to as “The Commitment.” The task force formed in January to update the guiding document will have its product formally approved by the City Council on Tuesday.

–The group was created, in part, as a response to President Donald Trump’s rhetoric against immigrants and other minority groups. In addition, the group was tasked with recommending whether the council should or should not declare the city a sanctuary for undocumented immigrants, which it later called for during the summer.

–They are also asking that the task force become a permanent arm of the city in order to ensure its policy goals are met. Possibly more controversially, the task force hopes to form a civilians’ oversight board for the Hayward Police Department, while also calling for HPD to withdraw from participation in Urban Shield, the emergency training/law enforcement trade show held each year by the Alameda County Sheriffs Department.

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–BERKELEY– Regular council meeting, Tuesday, Nov. 28, 6 p.m. [ENTIRE AGENDA HERE]
–MEASURE GG: WERE OPPONENTS RIGHT?– “In 2008 the population of Berkeley passed Measure GG. Based on the publicly disclosed arguments in favor, Measure GG was intended to enable the City to keep fire stations open and improve emergency medical response and disaster preparedness. Arguments in opposition to Measure GG noted there was: “No protection against the City reducing non-Measure GG support for fire, paramedic and related services.”

–“…It appears that this opposition argument has come to pass, with Measure GG tax revenue serving to replace, rather than supplement, some General Fund support of fire services.In the years since Measure GG was passed, the Fire Department’s overtime costs have trended upward. In contrast, since 2009, the General Fund spending on overtime has never again matched the value it was in FY09. Determining whether the city can legally even out the difference by simply lowering the General Fund allocation to the fire department will come before the council Tuesday evening. In addition, approval for the city attorney to review the appropriated uses of Measure GG funds will be discussed.

–ADULT-USE CANNABIS PERMITS– Berkeley medical cannabis dispensaries hoping to expand their operations in the forthcoming adult-use sector may receive temporary authorization to apply for state permits while the city hammers out its own “comprehensive policies.

–PG&E & POWER LINES– In the aftermath of the North Bay fires and indications the rash of blazes may have been caused by power lines, Berkeley elected officials are sending PG&E a letter asking them to maintain foliage near utility poles in Berkeley.

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–GATHERINGS– Annual Holiday Party & Toy Drive, hosted by Rep. Barbara Lee, Assemblymember Rob Bonta and Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson, Tuesday, Dec. 5, 5:30-7:30 p.m., West Oakland Youth Center, 3233 Market Street, Oakland. For info: eastbayholiday2017.eventbrite.com.

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