San Leandro’s campaign finance disclosures

Today, we ran a story about the latest campaign finance disclosures released for all the candidates running for San Leandro City Council.

As the story states, Councilman Jim Prola, who was appointed to the seat last year and who is running against four contenders, raised and spent the most money during the last filing period.

You can check out the full disclosures for each candidate below:


Charles Gilcrest

Linda Perry

Ursula Reed


Joyce Starosciak


Jim Prola

Hermy Almonte

Estelle Clemons

Also, check out the late contribution forms for Prola and Starosciak.


Who let the dogs out!?

pups.jpgWoof, woof, woof, woof! OK, no Baha Men here, but trained canines will soon visit San Lorenzo schools next year for random checkups to help district officials deter students from bringing any alcohol, drugs or weapons onto campuses.

The dogs — Labradors and Golden Retrievers — will cost the district $400 per day when they are used and are part of a new district strategy to increase campus safety.

However, some students, teachers and residents say the random dog searches create a “prison-like” atmosphere at the schools. What are your thoughts?


Councilwoman says San Leandro should have viscious-dog ordinance

angry-dog.jpgSan Leandro dog owners: Beware of Starosciak. Councilwoman Joyce Starosciak, that is.

At Monday’s City Council meeting, she talked about how she has received several complaints from residents about off-leash dogs attacking and injuring people or other small pets. She said she was so concerned about the issue that she suggested the city look into a prohibition of off-leash, dangerous dogs.

“I do believe we need to encourage responsible dog ownership,” Starosciak said.

“We have a prohibition on pot belly pigs,” she later added, “but we don’t have one for dogs.”

Looks like San Leandro could be following in Hayward’s footsteps.


Dear John…

The John Muir Elementary community on Saturday afternoon will bid farewell to a school that has served Hayward students for more than 80 years. The campus will close down next month due to declining enrollment.

Whether it was your first teaching job or the first time you ever got your name written on a chalkboard, we would like to hear your memories of the campus.

Oh, and the goodbye picnic will be held from 12 to 3 p.m. at the school, 24823 Soto Road.


Mayor proposes unconventional idea to help San Leandro’s budget woes

tsantos.jpgIt seems as though many city governments are going to have to get really creative next year to manage their budgets in the wake of these slow economic times.

At last night’s San Leandro City Council work session on the budget for next fiscal year, Mayor Tony Santos proposed an unconventional idea of his own to address the city’s projected budget deficit.

He suggested the city charge a fee on its fire insurance policy, saying he was once given the title as one of the country’s six experts on this matter (he used to work in the insurance industry in his heyday). This idea also accompanied his suggestion for a public safety tax if the economy doesn’t return to normal in the next two years or so, as well as making use of the council’s authority to implement the city’s charter.

“If we had some public safety tax, an insurance policy fee in fire insurance, and also if we implemented the charter provision at least on health benefits — if we could get $2 million from each, that would give us at least $6 million,” he said. “That would go a long way in managing the budget situation a little better.”

Read the full budget presentation given to the council here.


Council candidate gets celebrity push

ureed.jpgAccording to the San Leandro Community Action Network’s latest e-newsletter, City Council candidate Ursula Reed just picked up some huge support.

Actor Danny Glover has apparently taken a personal interest in Reed’s campaign and will be coming to San Leandro on Saturday to speak at a reception for her.

Wondering how this all happened? Her campaign manager, Terrell Santiago, said Glover heard about Reed “through a friend of a friend.” After their conversation, Glover, who is known to be pretty politically active, apparently asked what he could do to help.

In addition to coming to support Reed’s campaign, Glover will be talking about his upcoming film, which is about Toussaint L’Ouverture, who led the Haitian slave revolt against the French colonial regime in 1791.

Check out the invitation here.


Upcoming school bond event

The Hayward Chamber of Commerce will hold a Gourmet Gala to raise funds for the Measure I campaign from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday at Stonebrae Country Club, 222 Country Club Drive.

The exclusive event will feature food prepared by Stonebrae’s Executive Chef, Richard A. Bailey, and will provide attendees an opportunity to hear more about the bond. For tickets or for more information, call 510-537-2424.