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Crime, cleanliness remain top Hayward priorities

The City Council held the first of at least two priority-setting workshops last night. This one was a sort of brainstorming session, the City Manager will take input back to the drawing board and return with a revised version next month. In the end, it’s these priorities that are used to formulate where dollars will be spent when it comes time to create the budget for FY 2011-12.

Main goals carry over from last year. City Manager Fran David wanted to take the “Crime and Public Safety” and “Cleanliness” priorities from last year and also give a nod to the city’s work to be environmentally conscious, packaging it together into ”Safe, Clean, Green.”

Mayor Mike Sweeney, who was behind both the city’s Sustainability Committee and the Keep Hayward Clean and Green Task Force, objected.

“I’m very proud of our accomplishments, and we’ve done a lot of good things,” he said. “But I’m not sure I’m comfortable to say it’s an overriding priority.”

Continue Reading

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Calendar through Jan. 25

Hey, I really appreciate the feedback that came in, both in the comments and emails. I like Kelly’s idea about a place to put info regarding upcoming public events. Here’s what I can do — post what the Review has in the calendar section, looking forward about a week or so. Then everyone can use that post as a springboard to add events in the comments section. Let’s try it out, let me know what you think. You’ll find the community event calendar after the jump, followed by government listings. Continue Reading

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Meanwhile, in San Leandro

Still waiting for a full-time San Leandro reporter to join us to replace our guy who got called up for a year of service in the National Guard.

There’s a lot going on in that city. New Mayor Stephen Cassidy was sworn in this week at a meeting that also saw two-year contracts approved. Pension reform was a big part of Cassidy’s campaign, and that last action by the old council makes it difficult. Cassidy was on NPR the other night talking about it.

There’s also a new police chief, the city’s first female police chief, who will be sworn in on Jan. 10.

And the City Manager announced his resignation following his performance review Monday although what happened in that closed session is not being talked about.

All this follows a close election that saw incumbent Mayor Tony Santos defeated, a loss that soured the once-ardent supporter of ranked-choice voting on that system, which was used for the first time in San Leandro in November. 

There are a couple of active blogs run by politically minded San Leandro residents, as well as an anonymous insider who tweets and facebooks, all worth keeping an eye on if you are San Leandro minded.

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New HUSD Board President: Lisa Brunner

UPDATE: Here is today’s story.

The two new incoming boardmembers took the top two officer positions, with Lisa Brunner as the new president backed by Vice President William McGee. The two voted for each other, with Luis Reynoso supporting, who in turn was elected secretary. Maribel Heredia and Jesus Armas supported each other for prez and veep respectively but were outvoted.

Brunner’s first action was to change the seating, moving Superintendent Janis Duran over to the dais where the student board members used to sit. She will have more admin staff at the same dais as well. Student members now on the dais to the other side.

Teachers union President Mercedes Faraj said she had heard rumors of something like that happening, and said the ascension of former VP Heredia to the president position would have been “the natural order of things,” but the new lineup “is indicative of a change.”

Former board President Paul Frumkin said it wasn’t that big a surprise, and added that he supported both McGee and Brunner in their election bids.

“Given the last year and a half, it’s natural that it happened this way,” he said.

I’ll be working on a story tomorrow, but I figured HayWord readers might want to discuss.

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Last night’s rally at Hayward City Hall

dreamactIt was organized by Congregations Organizing for Renewal as part of an ongoing show of support for the Dream Act, a bill that would offer a means to get citizenship to hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants who came to the country when they were children.

According to Matt O’Brien’s story, “The Dream Act would give conditional green cards to undocumented immigrants if they graduate from high school and pursue a college education or military service. After a 10-year waiting period, they could obtain permanent residency if they met all the requirements, and they could eventually apply for citizenship.

They would have to be under 30 years old to qualify and must have arrived in the country before their 16th birthday. According to the latest version of the bill, they will also pay $2,525 in fees for the privilege of legal residency — $525 to apply, and $2,000 five years later to extend the conditional visa.

California is estimated to have about a quarter of the more than 800,000 people who could benefit from the act.”

Read on for the COR press release on last night’s rally. Continue Reading

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Anyone see any electioneering at the polls?

A reader tells me there was some electioneering going on at polling places Tuesday, witnessed in the parking lot of Loren Eden Elementry School and at a polling spot near San Felipe Park. Basically, the reader said voters were being approached by people carrying sample ballots with some school board candidate names crossed out, and told something to the effect of “we hope you make the right decision.” Another account had people handing out fliers for some school board candidates in front of a polling place.

It’s against California law to campaign within 100 feet of a polling place on Election Day.

Did anyone see any of this going on out there?

And in case you missed today’s school board election story, here it is.

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Hayward area election links

Here are some links to look at… like I mentioned in a recent comment, I’m off this week but I wanted to open up a new post for election commenting.

HUSD 2-year seat. Here’s our story.

Here’s the smartvoter information page on candidates. Candidate websites: Jesus Armas, Lawrence Fitzpatrick, Annette Walker.

HUSD 4 year seat. Here’s our story.

Here’s the smartvoter information page. Candidate websites: Audie Bock, Lisa Brunner, Sue Lafferty, William McGee, Sheila Sims.

We also had stories on the Eden Township Healthcare District race, Hayward Area Recreation and Park District, San Leandro school board, San Leandro mayor, San Leandro City Council, San Leandro ballot measures, more on San Leandro’s Measure Z, San Lorenzo school board, Fairview Fire  Protection District, Castro Valley Sanitary District, and last but not least, the District 2 supervisor’s race.

Here’s the smartvoter Alameda County page, where you can find more information on many of those races.

The city of Hayward website has a page with links to videos of forums between the supervisors and Hayward school board candidates, but it doesn’t seem to be working for me. Might be my computer.

Catch you all next week!

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Foam fight tonight in Hayward?

Tonight’s City Council agenda includes a public hearing on a Styrofoam ban. You can read the entire item here.

Hayward wouldn’t be the first city to pass such a ban, and it wouldn’t be the first city to have said ban opposed by the Chamber of Commerce. According to an e-mail from Councilman Bill Quirk, that opposition is expected at tonight’s meeting.

Save the Bay also checked in and will be there to speak to the importance of such a ban.

Also on the agenda: A work session on regulating hand-cart vendors, which are currently banned from operating but do anyway.

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This week’s school board, HARD candidate forums

So I’m off this week. Just got back from a short camping trip — don’t much care for publicly announcing when I won’t be home, so I didn’t. But I’m back in town now yet still not actively at work, although I’ll be attending tomorrow night’s forum to gather more thread for the school board candidate story. But I’m officially off until Monday.

Here’s the info on this week’s candidate forums, which ran as a brief in the Review:

CANDIDATE FORUMS: There will be a forum for Hayward Unified school board candidates from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday in room 804 at Chabot College, 25555 Hesperian Blvd.

The event is sponsored by the college’s political science department and Chabot College Foundation.

Organizers said all candidates are expected to attend.

There will be another forum at 7 p.m. Friday at the Westminster Hills Presbyterian Church, 27287 Patrick Ave. That event, sponsored by the Hayward Demos Democratic Club, the Greater Hayward Democratic Club and GLOBE, will be followed by a forum for candidates running for the Hayward Area Recreation and Park District board.

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Burglary update and homes allowed near Costco — a Hayward council roundup

Here’s the gist of things that came out of Tuesday night’s meeting, I’m working on a couple of stories for later this week:

BURGLARY UPDATE: Council heard a report about this summer’s uptick in residential burglaries from Lt. Sheryl Boykins and Lt. Reid Lindblom, who are the community resource officers for the southside and northside, respectively. They had some figures, here are the highlights:

June saw the largest increase, from 78 to 118, a 51 percent increase, while May saw a 28 percent increase and July 13 percent. If you look at the totals for the first seven months of the year, there’s only been a 5 percent spike during that period compared with 2009, so it’s pretty clear the rise began with summer. And it’s not a Hayward thing, there have been increases in surrounding communities and most of those arrested have been from out of town. They’ve arrested 44 burglary suspects in the past three months, what Boykins said is “more than we usually arrest in a year.”

The lieutenants said the most affected neighborhoods are Darwin, Leeward, Bell Harbor, Palma Ceia, Fairway Park, and Silver Maple in S. Hayward, while in N. Hayward it’s Prominence, Bailey Ranch, area around Atherton and the area around Pinewood and Farm Hill.

They said they’ve increased presence in those areas but more importantly have worked with the community to let them know what’s going on and what they can do to prevent it, most notably helping watch over the neighborhood.

“We make way more arrests by networking with the community than we do by being in the right place at the right time,” said Lindblom. Continue Reading