Alameda’s Pro-E Team Vows to Keep Up School Support

The election results for Measure E aren’t yet official, but here’s how they stand:

Yes – 14, 415, 65.62%

No – 7,551, 34.38%

With 66.6% needed, the Pro-Measure E effort appears to be falling ever so short.

Voters sent in 22,029 ballots, representing 52.88% of all registered Alameda voters.

The results are quite telling: The very-close-to-a-super-majority of voters supports the Measure E school parcel tax, even with its defects and despite major economic hardship.

What the 47.12%, or 19,659 residents, believe about this important issue… we may never know. Certainly, their voices could have really made a difference for either side.

As the photo above (of a child near Broadway and Blanding) illustrates, groups pushing for the schools and more financial resources for them will try to re-group in the interest of furthering the educational goals of the community.


Alameda’s Measure E: Only 65% Say Yes

The Alameda County Registrar’s unofficial tally puts Measure E behind the needed 66.6% super-majority required to pass the new school parcel-tax measure.

The ballot count stands at 65.39% for the measure, representing 13,789 voters.

Those against, 34.61%, representing 7,297 voters, are likely to have defeated the measure.

Stay tuned for the official results, which won’t be available until Wednesday, June 23, after a few remaining ballots at City Hall are tallied.

Given the weak state of many family budgets and businesses these days, the pro-Measure E ballot count is fairly impressive.

However, a slightly less taxing measure, i.e., one that didn’t generally double previous taxation levels, could have garnered those extra 100 or so votes that would have made the difference.  

Hopefully, residents and school supporters can take such a lesson to heart.


Election Day for Alameda’s Measure E

The ballots for the hotly contested school parcel tax are due today, June 22, at the Alameda County Registrar of Voter’s Office: 1255 Fallon Street in Oakland.

Preliminary results we be posted online by the county registrar starting at 8 p.m. tonight, when pro-Measure E supporters will meet at Otaez Mexican Restaurant on Webster Street.

Please share any news on anti-Measure E events, if you can.

Some residents shared their anti-Measure E views recently by posting hand-made signs in their cars, which were parked at Alameda Town Centre.

On Bay Farm, a lot of the homes directly facing the San Francisco Bay have posted pro-Measure E signsin the past week or so, many with the “protect our home values” message.

While most Alameda residents and business want to support the public schools, many have mixed feelings about the size of the parcel tax and the way it is applied to commercial property.

Any bets? With the required 66.6% needed to pass, and the economy still hobbling along, this could prove to be a tough parcel tax for voters to swallow.


Alameda’s Measure E Grabs National Spotlight

Jenny Turcinovic is putting Alameda — and the nasty Measure E-battle — on the map.

The New York Times did a June 11 story on what transpired when Turcinovic put up a “No on Measure E” sign up at her shop, the International Aria Market & Bakery, at Webster Street and Lincoln Avenue.

Now, the New York Times writer (a freelancer judging from his email address) starts off the story by saying that Turcinovic has had the shop open for years, while the Bosnian immigrant has really had the food shop in business for closer to a year or two.

Thus, Turcinovic may not have had any previous experience with such contentious Island issues (and attitudes) when she put up the sign, supplied by her landlord Steve Case.

Still, it’s sad to read that some pro-Measure E folks apparently got very nasty about Turcinovic’s take on the parcel tax.

The shop owner doesn’t feel that she has the money to pay for Measure E, while parents vocally let her know their view on the parcel tax: Alameda schools and students deserve more support — financially and otherwise.

And with tough times today for many families and businesses, it’s really a shame that Alameda leaders and residents alike couldn’t come up with a parcel tax that wasn’t so controversial. Of course, once it involves a tax, it’s generally an automatic controversy.

The nasty debate has made it very clear that we most need on the Island is a parcel tax that makes more sense to more members of the community, is less divisive and offers clear costs and benefits for taxpayers and students alike.

Maybe the New York Times freelancer, Gerry Shig, will come back and shed light on this angle of the Measure E battle before the looming June 22 deadline for voting.

If you want to comment on the NYT piece, go to the writer’s blogsite.


Alameda Action at City Hall

Several protestors taking a stand against British Petroluem and speaking out in support of Gulf Coast residents, wildlife and communities turned up at City Hall on June 8, election night for several statewide measures, as well as local and statewide primaries.

Many Alameda and Bay Area residents feel a strong sense of solidarity with the Gulf Coast after recent oil spills in San Francisco Bay hurt wildlife and polluted area beaches, including Alameda’s Crown Beach.

Also, for those residents wondering about Measure E results, you will have to hold on another two weeks. June 22 is the official day when the mail-in ballots for the latest Alameda parcel-tax measure are due, and the election period is officially over.

Between now and then, expect the vocal supporters and opponents of Measure E to be out on the streets (or, at least on the lawns with signs) and all over the Internet with their respective messages.  

(Thanks to James Fryer for the image.)


Alamedans Push for Measure E

Several hundred students, parents and other Alameda residents turned out for the Measure E march and rally this past Saturday, May 22.

Speakers included county and local leaders who stressed Alameda’s need to maintain the quality and scope of its school system, while keeping the “low adminstrators-to-students” ratio, they said.

Many local media sources are focusing on the Measure E parcel tax issue on the Island to see how it fits into Bay Area and statewide trends. Voters recently voted down new school parcel taxes in Pleasanton and Pasadena but approved one in Piedmont.

And while many residents are posting signs that support Measure E, there are a large number of signs around town against the new parcel tax.

The debate will rage on for the next week or so.