Reading Alameda Public Works Director Bob Haun’s commentary, ("The City Does Employ Engineers for Its Projects," May 21) reminded me of the old adage, "Saying it’s so doesn’t make it so." Haun does a fine job of laying out the "facts," as he wants you to believe them, but when you scratch the surface of his claims, you uncover the telltale glint of fool’s gold.

The recent commentary ("City Must Employ Licensed Engineers," April 30) argued that the city must employ licensed engineers on transportation projects such as the Shore Line/Westline Cycle Track. The Public Works Department heartily agrees. Not only does the Department employ nine engineers with 238 years of collective engineering experience, the Public Works licensed civil engineer who designed the Shore Line Cycle Track brought 38 years of experience to that project.

Renters are still facing frequent and steep rent increases after the City Council’s May 5 deferral of a proposed ordinance to strengthen the Rent Review Advisory Committee (RRAC).

Alameda Point is at a significant cross-road, and so is the Alameda Point Collaborative (APC). APC was established in 1999 through a special federal homeless accommodation process. Over the last 16 years we have been successfully working to end homelessness by providing housing and services to create a community where formerly homeless families and individuals can flourish. At any given time we are serving almost 500 individuals, including almost 300 children and youth.

What will $11,800 buy you? This amount may have influenced new contracts with the city of Alameda. In this last general election only one elected official collected contributions from a Public Safety Employee Union. That individual was Councilman Jim Oddie. 

According to the City Clerk’s office he accepted $11,799.57 from the Alameda Firefighters Association (local firefighters union) for mailers and phone banking. Not surprisingly, he fully supported and pushed for the new public safety (fire and police) contracts that were approved on April 29.