Letters to the Editor
Note: The Alameda Sun received a copy of this letter.
Open letter to the Mayor and Alameda City Council,
At the invitation of some 50 homeowner association presidents (or their representatives), Alameda Police Department Chief Nishant Joshi met with us in small sessions in October to discuss both the state of policing on our island as well as his vision as police chief.
He listened actively to our many observations and unease with the crime and personal safety concerns that we and our neighbors have lived with since the pandemic. Chief Joshi provided us with a detailed explanation of the crime statistics and analysis (previously shown to the City Council) which stands in stark contrast to what has been appearing and misleading many of us in social media; he described actions that he has taken and will be taking to make the department a study in good policing; and he produced a detailed plan to encourage active community involvement.
This new Police Chief and fellow Alamedan expressed to those of us in the conversations that his goal is the betterment of our island community. He indicated that he is in it for the long haul and that he is serious about implementing positive changes we’d like to see in an effective and responsible police department.
Further, we want to thank the members of APD, especially personnel who are affected by the reorganization, and those who are responding affirmatively to working the mandatory overtime that the Chief has implemented. We appreciate the personal sacrifices that they have been making to keep Alamedans safe.
The list of an ad hoc council of homeowner association presidents / representatives who invited the Chief to meet includes:
Kerwin Allen, Nino Borsoni, Marian Breitbart, Bruce Carlton, Velvet Chang, Pauline Chow, Melanie Colman, Danyelle Covey, Zack Davis, Michael Dean, Robert Deutsch, Claude Devarenne, Angela Fawcett, Tom Fogerty, Edwin Fong, Carl Fritzche, Bill Garvine, Michele Gee, Stephen Gee, Jon Hamilton, Richard Harkins, Travis Heppe, Kevin Jensen, Richard Kim, Christopher Lee, Dale Lillard, Linda Lyons-Justus, Leah Nishi, Kevin O’Rourke, Chad Otten, Bill Pai, Natalie Porter, Kathy Ratto, Mita Raval, Michael Robles-Wong, Tim Rodden, Grant Scully, Nell Shimasaki, Craig Smith, Ed Stavnezer, Greg Stoia, JP Streeter, Alice Sunshine, Brian Tremper, Julie Van Buhler, Amanda Vandehey, Mark Vis, Neil Wilson, Bill Withrow, Jennifer Yip.
Editor: The Board of Directors and staff of Alameda Meals on Wheels extends our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Supervisor Wilma Chan. The tragedy of her untimely loss in a traffic incident on November 3rd has shocked and saddened us all. Throughout her decades of public service, Supervisor Chan was a strong and steadfast proponent of Alameda Meals on Wheels and our programs. We are grateful for her friendship. Her support and presence will be badly missed. May she rest in peace.
Editor: Reflecting on the passing of Supervisor Chan and saddened by her loss. We don’t need to ascertain fault in this tragedy to further realize the need for cultural change in our abilities to navigate our city, in a car, on a bike, on foot. I am a motorist, cyclist, and pedestrian. I am a taxpayer funding city streets, sidewalks and pathways. I also help fund traffic enforcement. In retirement I have cycled and walked significantly more than I ever did while working. In doing so I have witnessed a carelessness among drivers that is either accepted or simply ignored. I live in Harbor Bay and it is quite common, particularly in the early morning hours (school and work commutes) to observe drivers exceeding speed limits and running stop signs in school, residential and business areas. This also occurs throughout the day. There is little to no traffic enforcement. There appears to be virtually no police presence. We are fortunate that we have not experienced more tragedies such as the loss of life last Wednesday. Let’s all take responsibility for changing this unacceptable behavior. I doubt if many of us could live with the knowledge that we took a life through our negligence behind the wheel. Drive the posted limits and stop at the stop signs. Thank you.