Alameda News

The Alamedan got several letters last week regarding Site A. For your convenience, we're printing all of them in one handy post.

When my family and I moved to Alameda, in 2005, the Island was a veritable burger desert. Fast-forward a decade, and it seems that the Island’s burger SOS has been answered by a bevy of patty-slinging outlets ranging from local startups to national chains.

I don’t eat burgers very often, but have to admit I was curious who had the best burger. So I set out on a nine-day burger odyssey.

Few things keep skateboarders off Alameda's streets, but briefly last November, the streets were quiet as the city's skate tribe gathered at St. Joseph's Church to mourn the tragic death of 17-year-old Clay Harding. On Saturday the clan gathered again in his memory, but this time loud and proud at the skate park where Clay was a high-flying regular.

Business owners who are frustrated about the Point’s bursting water mains, potholed roads, overflowing sewers and spotty phone and electric service have urged the City Council to approve a 68-acre waterfront development proposal there known as Site A, which they believe will start to fix the problems with an investment of more than $100 million in new infrastructure. The council is expected to vote on whether to move forward with development of Site A on June 16.

I read with interest your reporting on the City Council discussion on the new emergency operations center.

I am amazed that the U.S.S. Hornet's offer to the city to become a city, or even regional, EOC is never discussed. The Hornet is the most earthquake survivable structure in all of Alameda. It is already built, but would require some retrofitting that surely would cost less than the proposed structure, which you know will have cost overruns. Some noteworthy advantages are:

City leaders on Tuesday unanimously okayed a $188 million budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1 and a $174.4 million budget for 2016-17.

“We’ve shown restraint. And we’ve also started to restore some of the cuts we made during the Great Recession,” said City Councilman Jim Oddie, who said the budget begins to address deferred maintenance and long-term retiree costs.

Mayor Trish Herrera Spencer, who voiced some concerns about the overtime budget for public safety, said she thinks the budgets serve the whole city.

“I think this is a step toward correcting (funding for) departments that have truly been left behind,” Spencer said.

The City Council signed off on budgets and police body cameras on Tuesday. Here's the tweet by tweet.

The Alameda Unified School District and its teachers have reached a tentative, one-year contract accord, the first time in a decade they have done so prior to the expiration of their existing contract.

The new contract, which must still be approved by teachers and the Board of Education, gives teachers a 4 percent pay raise next year and allots money to boost teachers' hourly rate, increase stipends for speech and language pathologists and help pay teachers' dental insurance costs. The district also agreed to cover teachers' expected pension cost hikes this year, a press release issued by the district on Tuesday afternoon says.

The City Council is set to consider a contract to purchase body cameras for Alameda police and access to a system that will store all the video they record.

Central Avenue has a safety problem. Between 2008 and 2012, 21 people bicycling and nine people walking were hit by vehicles between Encinal Avenue and Main Street. Crossing Central on foot can be perilous due to poor visibility, long crossing distances, and four lanes of fast-moving traffic; bicycling along Central is equally daunting for similar reasons.