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Calendar for week of Feb. 28

 Here’s this week’s calendar. Just about to head to San Leandro to see what they say about options for a medical marijuana ordinance. Tomorrow, the Hayward City Council is poised to take steps to save redevelopment assets from a possible state take. And Wednesday’s Sustainability Committee meeting could be a big one, as they will be looking at the draft Residential Energy Conservation Ordinance. They moved that meeting into the main Council Chambers instead of the work session room, in case people turn out. Continue Reading

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Centennial Hall deconstruction well under way

centennialdestructStopped by the site this morning, and this is what I saw. Somewhere under that heap, I believe close to the spot where the rubble peaks, my wife and I cut up the dance floor to a Shane MacGowan/Sinead O’Conner duet and cut the cake to Def Leppard. The Irish whiskey at the open bar was the first to go, and my wife’s father and her uncle (Carl Nolte of the S.F. Chronicle) both complained that my rube friends drained it without the appreciation it deserves. We didn’t have the main hall — that was being used for the wedding reception of a preacher’s daughter, and it was a dry event. We ran into some of the wedding party in the parking lot outside, mixing drinks at an impromptu bar set up in someone’s trunk. Good times, sort of a bummer to see the place torn down, but I still got the memories and photographs.

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Faith Frazier, San Leandro councilmember and women’s advocate

From a April 13, 1974 story after Frazier was elected to the City Council.

From a April 13, 1974 story after Frazier was elected to the City Council.

We had a story in today’s paper about the passing of Faith Frazier. For space reasons, we couldn’t write more than that, but I received a lot of information that is included below. The bio is courtesy of former San Leandro Mayor Shelia Young.

“I’ll tell you something,” said her son, Carl. “My mom has devoted more years in San Leandro to civic issues, political issues than probably anyone else other than Jack Maltester. My mom goes back to before the city was really a city.”

“She passed away peacefully at Kaiser Hospital last Sunday, February 20, 2011, with her family by her side,” wrote Young in an e-mail.  “She was an incredibly gifted woman who helped numerous people throughout her lifetime learn things about government and how it affects us all. She will be missed by scores of electeds throughout the city of San Leandro and Alameda County. Clearly, she was a legend in her later life and accomplished much by way of leadership and knowledge sharing.” Continue Reading

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Calendar for week of Feb. 21

privatelivesHere’s the calendar for the coming week. At right is a photo from “Private Lives,” at the Douglas Morrison Theater.

Feb. 23
Job lab — 12:30-2:30 p.m. Wednesdays. The Castro Valley Library, 3600 Norbridge Ave., offers assistance for community members seeking employment by providing a quiet space for job seekers to use the library’s laptops to update or create a resume, search for jobs online, or other employment-related activities. Computers and assistance available on a walk-in basis. For more information, call Lyn at 510-667-7903.

Continue Reading

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Open letter from nonprofit re: Heredia trip

This was left in the comment section by Tara Kini, figured I’d break it out in an new entry:

Dear Members of the Hayward USD School Community,

We are writing to commend HUSD Board Member Maribel Heredia for her passionate advocacy on behalf of all California public school students during the week of February 7-11th in Washington D.C. Since 2007—well before she was elected to the HUSD Board—Ms. Heredia has been a plaintiff in the Renee v. Duncan lawsuit, a suit to enforce the “highly qualified teacher” provisions of No Child Left Behind. She is represented in this suit, free of charge, by the nonprofit civil rights organization Public Advocates. Continue Reading

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Fairfield group selected for HUSD supt. search

The Hayward Unified board decided to go with Fairfield-based The Cosca Group to conduct the search for a new superintendent. TCG submitted an estimate of $23,200 for the search, which was considerably lower than the $31,100 price quoted by Ray & Associates, which led the previous aborted search.

Trustee Luis Reynoso didn’t agree with the selection, and said he believed Ray & Associates could have picked up where they left off. Invoices show the district was billed $26,393 by R&A when the search was called off in May.

“I’m kind of disappointed,” Reynoso said. “We’re not making decisions based on good business practices.”

However, Kathryn Benson, HUSD director of human resources, said the search would have been started anew even if R&A was selected.

“Because of the length of time passed, the candidates and district information that were included in last year’s Superintendent search are no longer applicable,” Benson wrote in an e-mail. “The search firm would need to start from the beginning to attract and recruit new candidates, collaborate with the newly configured Board of Education to determine their preferences for a Superintendent candidate, and become familiar with the changing district demographics, educational ratings, and fiscal challenges.  The proposal submitted by R & A reflected that task.  Their proposal outlined a new search (not a continuing effort) and was considered by the Board of Education along with two other firms.”

Board President Lisa Brunner said they felt TCG was a wise pick for a number of reasons.

“The TCG proposal was better, and covered more of the advertising costs,” she said. “And  their background is strictly academic, and they’re local. They really seemed positive in what they are doing.”

Brunner said they hope to have a new superintendent selected by May to make for a smooth transition. Superintendent Janis Duran’s retirement is effective June 30.

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Mission Blvd. mission continues, despite potential funding loss

The City Council held a Tuesday night work session on the Mission Boulevard Specific Plan. That’s the one that covers Mission from Harder Road to the northern city limit, with the exception of the downtown area between Jackson and A streets. It’s 640 parcels, 200 acres, about 2 miles long.

As Mayor Mike Sweeney pointed out, it’s important to keep in mind that redevelopment funds are crucial to see this become a reality, and the future of those funds is uncertain because Gov. Brown has stated he wants to dissolve redevelopment agencies and use the funds elsewhere.

“If the governor is successful and redevelopment is no longer available, that takes several tools out of the tool box for this area,” Sweeney said. “The remaining tools would have to be used very effectively.”

Read about Tuesday’s discussion after the jump, click on images for a larger view. Continue Reading

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Share your story for Hayward museum exhibit

It’s oral and written history time over at the Hayward Area Historical Society, where they want to hear your fondest memories of Hayward, Cherryland, Castro Valley, San Lorenzo, Mt. Eden, Ashland, Fairview or old Russell City. They’re putting together an exhibit for the new museum space, which is under construction in the former Kumbala building at Foothill and Russell in downtown Hayward. The exhibit, scheduled to open in the fall, will feature memories of residents tied to the Hayward area, both of the recorded and written variety.

We were just talking about good ideas for the Hayward mural, here’s another chance to share some of your treasured or poignant moments. Deadline is April 30.

Read some examples, find out how to submit after the jump. Bonus: Historical photos, courtesy HAHS! Continue Reading

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This week’s calendar and Corita Celebration

love1985Here’s what’s going on this week. A story on the Corita Celebration is running in tomorrow’s paper, but it’s available online, and you can already wander through the gallery at Hayward City Hall and take a look at various pop art works. She’s most famous for the stamp at left, which became one of the best selling U.S. Postage stamps of all time after being released in 1985. Continue Reading

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Hayward’s latest green proposal would affect homeowners

"RECO lawww!"

"RECO lawww!"

Hayward’s mulling a Residential Energy Conservation Ordinance, or RECO, and we had a story on it in today’s paper.

City officials really want to hear from the public on this. At the last Sustainability Committee meeting, some citizens expressed that they didn’t think the city was doing a good enough job of letting people know about it. There was talk of possibly including a notice in every water bill, but that would be fairly cost prohibitive.

 San Francisco and Berkeley passed such ordinances back in the 1980s.

Alice LaPierre, city of Berkeley building science specialist, said many residents “are on board with the idea of efficiency” and that the intent of the ordinance is to “protect residents from rising energy costs.”

“They will see a payoff immediately, and they’ll notice they have a more comfortable home,” she said.

Hayward residents at the last meeting and Realtors alike said they’re all for energy saving measures that will help the environment. But the real estate people I spoke with said it should be done in a more voluntary manner, instead of putting prohibitive requirements on homeowners or parties involved in a real estate transaction. Continue Reading