The General Election ballot is set, and Alameda voters will be determining a host of issues in November. Along with voting for the next U.S. President, Alameda voters will elect two city councilmembers, a city auditor, treasurer, school board members and decide on two city ordinance issues.
On Monday, Aug. 8, the City Council voted 3-2 to place a doctored version of the city-sponsored landlord-friendly rent ordinance (City Code 3148) on the ballot. The city tampered with the ordinance using last-minute language that can nullify months of effort by Alameda residents to ensure passage of a meaningful and effective rent stabilization law that plugs loopholes in City Code 3148.
Members of several tenant advocacy groups congregated at the front steps of City Hall on Monday, Aug. 8, to voice their displeasure with the evictions and other harassment taking place at Bay View Apartments.
The City Council approved placing the Utility Modernization Act on the November ballot. The measure passed 4-1. Mayor Trish Spencer cast the lone dissenting vote.
The act has two main proponents. The first modernizes language to update the existing Utility Users Tax. The second confirms the annual transfer of funds from Alameda Municipal Power (AMP) to the city.
This provision protects core city services without raising tax rates, according to the city’s press release.
The city of Alameda’s Rent Stabilization and Eviction Limitation Ordinance that went into effect on March 1 has raised concerns from tenants, landlords and local politicians.
The Alameda City Council adopted the new ordinance to give relief to tenants from the increasing cost of rent in the city and create a process that would suppress landlord-renter tensions. However, the ordinance has created more squabbles between the two sides.
The City Council is soliciting applications from residents who would like to serve on the some of the city’s boards and commissions. There is one vacancy each on the Civil Service Board, the Golf Commission, the Planning Board, the Transportation Commission and the Public Utilities Board.
The registered architect’s seat is open on the Historical Advisory Board. The Housing Authority Board has three vacancies, one of the seats must be filled by a senior citizen. The Public Art Commission and the Social Service Human Relations Board each has two vacancies.
Last Thursday, members of the Recreation and Park Commission took a tour of five current and upcoming park projects: Jean Sweeney Open Space Park, Encinal Boat Launch Facility, the Alameda Point Sports Project, Krusi Park and Estuary Park.
Around 1 a.m. at the Feb. 16 City Council meeting, Mayor Trish Spencer revealed that fixed-term leases can be used by landlords to avoid paying relocation costs.
Once word spreads about this loophole, fixed-term leases will proliferate, and stable, community-minded tenants will be replaced by transient, nomadic individuals with little or no interest in building a community.