The Truth Matters
As the April 9 special election is getting closer, it is becoming apparent that the Measure B campaign is employing underhanded practices of repeatedly spreading misleading, fear-based information and telling outright lies to further their cause. After doing extensive research, we would like to break these down for our fellow Alamedans.
According to a flyer from proponents of Measure B, Alamedans will pay for increased services and therefore, pay more taxes. We understand this project will actually result in substantial savings to emergency and medical services through reduced visits to emergency rooms and reduced hospital stays.
The Measure B campaign employed paid signature gatherers who asked Alamedans if they wanted to “protect open space” or to protect Crab Cove. People were told that land would be taken away and repurposed, or that the petition was to stop the visitor center from being turned into a needle exchange program. None of this was accurate.
The Measure B campaign refused to disclose the sources of campaign donations until forced to by concerned residents who filed a complaint with the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC). The complaint was sustained and Friends of Crab Cove (FOCC) was ultimately fined for their lack of timely disclosure.
The Measure B campaign flyer, states, “Alamedans created Jean Sweeney Open Space Park, we can do it again.” Our opinion is that the Measure B campaign is not about saving parks. No parks are in danger. However, if we try to convert the McKay buildings to a park, the city has shared that it may actually take maintenance and improvement funding from other parks, including the partially completed Jean Sweeney Open Space.
The Measure B campaign flyer states, “If we lose this McKay Avenue land at Crab Cove it is gone forever.” This project does not take over any existing park property at Crab Cove. Further, the East Bay Regional Parks District (EBPRD) is adamant that the property is not suitable for park expansion, and they have no interest in acquiring it by any means.
The Measure B campaign flyer states, “Protect our waterfront and open space.” The property being discussed is not on the waterfront and is not open space. It will not become open space as the EBRPD has unequivocally stated it has zero interest in the parcel.
A FOCC flyer states, “Benefits special interests (Kaiser, Sutter, Anthem Blue Cross) at Alamedans’ expense.” This another reverse of the truth. Alamedans will be benefiting from a variety of grants from these same organizations. They are investing their own money to help residents of the city and county of Alameda, in clear recognition of the fiscal, medical and mental health benefits to those who will be receiving services from the center.
The FOCC flyer also states, “No priority to serve Alameda’s homeless seniors or veterans.” This is also false as 50 percent of the services will be allocated to serve the Alameda community. The city’s most vulnerable will have great access to information and resources thanks to the planned resource center. Specific subsidies to serve veterans will be part of the senior housing component.
“This facility does not belong next to parks and schools,” the flyer states. This is the property identified by the federal government as suitable for homeless services, and affirmed by Alameda City Council. The school district, as well as principals and staff has endorsed the project.
Calling this a “Federal land grab for a private Regional Homeless facility” as the flyer states is also a factual misrepresentation. The buildings were flagged as surplus by the federal government and ostensibly donated for this work per federal requirements laid out in Title V of the McKinney Vento Act.
“The Drop-in/Resource Center will draw more homeless to Alameda” states the FOCC flyer. The resource center is for the exclusive use of Alameda residents who are at-risk of being or recently became homeless. The center will use the same tried-and-true residential qualification as the Alameda Food Bank, which helps many vulnerable members of our community, including children.
Proponents of Measure B state the center “Threatens funding to Alameda’s unique non-profits (Food Bank, Meals on Wheels, Midway Shelter, Warming Shelter, Mastick Senior Center)” which we believe is untrue on several levels. None of the funding of the wellness center will be coming from the funding sources that these wonderful organizations rely on. Pitting important services against each other is misleading and morally reprehensible. These services are not mutually exclusive.
For more facts about the Alameda Wellness Center, Alameda Point Collaborative and the #YesonA campaign, visit www.wecarealameda.com, join a site tour or come to an upcoming house party.
Vote “yes” on A, “no” on B on Tuesday, April 9.