Our latest coverage on the planned sale of the Berkeley Post Office, first sent out on social media on Nov. 20, received the following response on Twitter: “can someone please explain to me the importance of this post office? It’s a building. I don’t get it.”
We wondered how to explain the issue within the 140 character confines of Twitter and quickly gave up.
Boston Globe columnist Renee Loth took on the task of explaining the sale-opposition side (albeit in more than Twitter-length) in a piece about the proposed sale of the post office in Somerville, Mass., titled “When public buildings were revered.”
The group Save the Berkeley Post Office cited the piece in a post Tuesday:
Boston Globe op-ed on the sale of the Somerville MA post office: “We have traveled a long way from a time when public buildings were revered precisely because they belonged to everyone. Now public facilities from schools to swimming pools are being privatized. Corporations “adopt” highways that the taxpayers won’t pay to maintain. We rely on private developers to pay for roads and streetlights.”
READ MORE: http://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2014/11/28/when-public-buildings-were-revered/3Fxrs6Rwd7a8YzSUEDlv6I/story.html
El Cerrito issued the following news release about firefighters sent to help battle the wildfires in San Diego:
El Cerrito Firefighters Deployed to Assist with Southern California Wildfires
El Cerrito, CA: Two units from El Cerrito have been deployed to assist with wildfires in Southern California.
At 10:30 PM on Thursday night, El Cerrito Fire Engine 372, along with units from Crockett, San Ramon, Moraga, and Alameda County were dispatched to the Las Pulgas Fire located at Camp Pendleton CA. This is near the City of San Diego. The Las Pulgas fire first reported at 3:15 p.m. Thursday and at 5:00 a.m. Friday morning was reported to have grown to 8,000 acres burned and 5% contained.
Additionally, at 1:00 a.m. Friday, May 16, OES 300 out of El Cerrito was called to the San Diego Complex involving nine major wildfires burning in that area. OES 300 is part of Strike Team 2802A and is made up of units from San Francisco, Marin County (3 units) and El Cerrito.
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) provides updated information on the size and containment of these and other major fire incidents online at http://cdfdata.fire.ca.gov/incidents/incidents_current
Already this year, CAL FIRE has already responded to nearly 1,300 wildfires, more than twice as many fires as average. All homeowners in California are encouraged to be prepared for wildfires. For more information on preparing for wildfires and creating a 100’ Defensible Space around your home are online at www.ReadyForWldfire.org.
CAL FIRE is an emergency response and resource protection department of the State of California.
Richmond’s City Council agenda on Tuesday includes discussion of the electronic billboard at Pacific East Mall next to Interstate 80, which could provide interesting discussion over its legality, which has been questioned by Councilman Tom Butt.
The group Citizens for East Shore Parks, meanwhile, is more interested in the item after the billboard, which is titled “Resolution to Protect the Coastal Prairie at the Richmond Field Station,” submitted by Vice Mayor Jovanka Beckles.
CESP issued the following email call to it members:
Please come to the City Council and support a resolution directing staff to remove any consideration in the South Richmond Plan for vehicle traffic through the coastal prairie at the Richmond Field Station- and to prepare alternatives for the Plan that only show vehicle being routed around the coastal prairie.
Why is it important to protect the coastal prairie?
Today, less than one percent of California’s original native grassland ecosystems remain intact! The Richmond Field Station is recognized by the California Native Plant Society for priority protection because it contains the last undisturbed native coastal prairie grassland adjacent to the San Francisco Bay Shoreline. This native grassland is an intact remnant stand that functions as a reference assemblage – invaluable for the study of how this threatened ecosystem functions and as an example of its community type for restoration ecologists. A great goal for the scientists at UC Berkeley.
Click here to view the resolution.
The City of Richmond will post the Council agenda online. Check the website here: http://ci.richmond.ca.us/index.aspx?nid=151.
It is item # I-2– which won’t be until 7:15 pm or later. But, you must sign in to speak prior to the item being called.
Each spring for the past few years Richmond has bestowed awards for historic preservation efforts. This isn’t one of them, but it deserves recognition.
It’s a functioning, old school phone booth that survives in the Richmond Memorial Auditorium at Civic Center Plaza. The auditorium and the rest of the plaza were renovated four years ago and a bank of phone booths (phones long since yanked) in the lobby were removed.
But a built-in booth at the end of one hallway remains, still with a phone, the little table underneath, and a folding door.
Even better, there is still a directory (the 2002 West Contra Costa phone book from SBC) attached to the wall inside an original Yellow Pages protective cover (below).
If you have pressing business to conduct with the City of El Cerrito, do it before Christmas Eve or wait until 2014.
Like most municipalities in the area, El Cerrito is shutting down between Christmas and New Year’s — with one exception. City offices will be open Dec. 30, because it was felt the downtime would be too long.
Here is the announcement from the city:
With the exception of Monday, December 30, 2013, City Hall and the Community Center Offices will be closed for the winter holiday period beginning Tuesday, December 24, 2013 through Friday, January 3, 2014 to facilitate the consolidation of employee vacation schedules and to save energy.
Other offices and facilities also have a modified schedule during this timeframe. Please refer to the City’s website, http://www.el-cerrito.org for full details about holiday hours for City offices and facilities.
Direct link: http://www.el-cerrito.org/winterbreakschedule
The El Cerrito Police & Fire Departments operate 365 days per year.
If you need immediate assistance from the police or fire department, dial 9-1-1.
If a Public Works emergency occurs while the office is closed, call the police non-emergency dispatch number at 510-237-3233.
Swim Center: Go to the Swim Center page for more details about the December Swim Center Schedule.
Holiday Break Camp: The Recreation Department offers a Holiday Break Camp for students in grades K-6. Pre-registration is required: Holiday Break Camp Information
Here are the agenda for the Albany Planning and Zoning Commission meeting at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 30 at City Hall, 1000 San Pablo Ave.:
Planning & Zoning Commission Meeting – Rescheduled from 10/23/2013
Date: 10/30/2013 6:30 PM – 11:00 PM
Location: Albany City Hall – Council Chambers
1000 San Pablo Avenue
Albany, California 94706
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Planning & Zoning Commission Meeting: Wednesday, October 30, 2013, 6:30PM, Albany City Hall – Council Chambers, 1000 San Pablo Avenue, Albany, CA.
This meeting includes discussion of UC Village Mixed Use Development Project, Conditional Use Permit for after school program at 1109-1111 Washington, Study Session for new home at 850 Hillside, Study Session for 2nd story addition at 1501 Visalia, Design Review & Conditional Use Permit for two-story addition at 1008 Ordway, and status report on Public Works Service Center at 540 Cleveland and Resolution of Intention to amend Planning & Zoning Code related to fully animated signs.