Alameda News

After decades of public debate on the future of Alameda Point and a laudable community planning process, Alameda is finally in the late stages of negotiating the specifics of the first portion of the community plan for Site A on the old Naval Air Station. As a West End resident, I am excited to see the transformation of the remains of the buildings that won the war into a vibrant, mixed-use community beside our shoreline, in our own backyard.

The city has inked a tentative deal with its public safety unions to establish a trust fund to help cover its unfunded retiree health liability.

Union members are to vote next week on amended contracts that include a new trust fund for retiree health benefits for Alameda's current police and fire employees.

The City Council will consider the new contracts at an April 29 budget hearing.

City Manager John Russo announced the tentative contract deal at Tuesday night's council meeting. Additional details are due out next week.

The tentative deal would amend and extend police and fire contracts to 2021. Existing contracts are in effect through 2017.

On Tuesday night, city leaders announced tentative deals with Alameda's public safety unions that include formation of a new trust fund to cover retiree medical costs. That and more, in our tweet by tweet of Tuesday's seven-hour City Council meeting.

Paramedics with the Alameda Fire Department will soon be able to do more than ferry patients to the hospital and provide care on the trip there: They’ll also provide assistance to chronically ill patients after their hospital stay is over to make sure they are getting the care they need to avoid a return trip.

Photos courtesy of James Astwood.

Firefighters quickly extinguished this vegetation fire that occurred on the 2100 block of Shore Line Drive on Saturday evening, Alameda Fire Capt. Jim Colburn said this weekend. The Alameda Fire Department sent an engine and a truck to put out the fire, which was burning next to a bench adjacent to the beach. As of Sunday afternoon, the cause of the fire was undetermined. James Astwood took these photos of the fire, which he said spread quickly because of the wind, and submitted them to The Alamedan.

City officials are considering whether to accept part of a waterway separating Oakland from the Island’s East End that the federal government has long sought to hand off.

City Council members took on the politically charged topic of traffic on Wednesday, voting to initiate an effort to draft a citywide transportation plan.

The council voted 4-1 to draft a pitch to prospective consultants to draft a plan, a process that could cost up to $400,000 and take 18 months to complete.

Councilman Tony Daysog - who originally pitched the transportation plan - said the plan would coordinate existing transportation plans and resources in order to create a framework for reducing solo driving trips. The request for proposals to be drafted by city staff should specifically spell out how a new plan will do that.

Last November, I announced that I had gone back to school to pursue a new career, and I reached out for help keeping Alameda covered while I make the transition. But there’s one more job that we’ll soon need to fill: Editor of The Alamedan.

I usually stand up before you to discuss issues facing my members or our district as a whole, but tonight I would like to begin speaking more personally. I want to talk to you about why I teach in Alameda.

Alamedans who don’t own cars will soon have another option for driving around and off the Island, and parking will be included.