October 28, 2010

Cassidy Reports Late Loans Totalling $2,950

San Leandro Mayoral candidate Stephen Cassidy loaned his campaign an additional $2,950, according to a report filed today with the San Leandro City Clerk's office. That brings Cassidy's total in loans to his own campaign to $12,030.

Tony Santos, the incumbent running for re-election, has a campaign debt of $4,700, while Joyce Starosciak has no debt and Sara Mestas has a debt of $365.97. During Santos' previous campaign for mayor, he loaned his campaign more than $27,500.

Contributions of more than $1,000 are required to be reported within 24 hours in the weeks leading up to the election. The election will be held on November 2, 2010.

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October 27, 2010

Santos Reports $1,000 Late Contribution from San Leandro Police

On October 27, 2010, San Leandro mayoral candidate Tony Santos reported a $1,000 contribution to his campaign from the San Leandro Police Officers Association (POA).

The San Leandro POA endorsed Joyce Starosciak for mayor early in August 2010 and weeks later gave a dual endorsement to Santos. Mike Sobek, President of the POA, was quoted in the San Leandro Times, "We still think Joyce will be a great choice for mayor and Tony has done well for us too....We felt that they (Santos, Starosciak, and Cassidy) are the top three candidates and we don’t want to see Stephen Cassidy elected."

During this election cycle, the San Leandro POA has contributed $1,000 to Starosciak, $2,000 to the campaign for Measure M, and $30,000 to the campaign for Measure Z.

Contributions of more than $1,000 are required to be reported within 24 hours in the weeks leading up to the election. The election will be held on November 2, 2010.

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October 26, 2010

San Leandro District 1 City Council Candidate Libbrecht

Carol Libbrecht became the third candidate for the San Leandro District 1 City Council seat earlier this month, after both candidate forums were held.

In order to provide voters with some more information about Ms. Libbrecht, San Leandro Bytes asked her some questions, including those that were asked at the second candidate forum.

Q: Why did you decide to run?

A: I entered the race because I feel that I can add a new demention [sic] to the council.. I was raised in this town, went through the public school system here, have a home, and business here for many years.  I have been involved in many organizations in San Leandro as well as going through the Chambers Leadership program.  Leadership taught me that no one person can achieve the ultimate goal, you need a group of people working together as a team.  I feel that I can bring a positive attitude to the position..


Q: Why didn't you file during the nomination period?
 
A: I entered the race after the nomination period because I was urged to do so.  Did not realize the level of support that I had in the community until family, friends and clients pushed me to be a write in candidate as an alternative choice. 
 

Q: What is your reaction to the headline story in the San Leandro Times about the recent rash of robberies in the City and what do you think is the solution to this problem?

A: The San Leandro Times robbery reports are alarming.  We need a strong police dept. but they can't be everywhere.  I would like to see more neighborhood watch groups and residence educated that it's ok to call the police dept if they see something suspicious.  National night out is good but we need more than one night a year for people to get to know each other.


Q: What specific plans do you have to identify and secure sustainable funding to open and operate the senior community center?

A: We need to make this a priority.  Council needs to be assertive and clear of our priority with staff. Finding a non profit organization to manage the center.  There are organizations out there we just need to find one SOON? 


Q: What is being done to bring new large companies to San Leandro? What type of incentives would you recommend you offer?

A: I have been involved in and with business for many years.  We need to update the San Leandro Business Plan and check to see why other towns can reinvent themselves and bring in new businesses.  Need to offer business incentives and retention packages to reinvent our town.  Also needs to be a transparent process. 

 
Q: Do you feel Measure Z could have a negative impact on our City? Might big ticket items such as cars be purchased in other cities, thus decreasing revenue?

A: All towns are looking to increase revenue.  Union City is asking for a 1/2 %, San Leandro is asking 1/4%.  We have to do something to keep our police, fire, and services strong.  My biggest concern is the 7 year time line, but I do like that it will be reviewed by a citizens oversight committee.


Q: What are San Leandro's plans for electric vehicle charging stations, specifically the Callan Start Garage Project?

A:  Exciting to realize a state of the arts structure.  Great start need to be innovative and promote green technology.  Looking forward to future green projects.


As a write-in candidate, Libbrecht's name does not appear on the ballot and must be written on the ballot to vote for her. The election will be held on November 2, 2010.

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Measure Z Campaign Takes in Almost $1,000 in Latest Fundraising Report

According to the most recent financial disclosure from the Protect San Leandro Services Committee for Measure Z, the campaign raised just under $1,000 in the first two weeks of October 2010.

Contributions included:

  • $500 from Tom Silva of Eden Realty
  • $250 from City Council candidate Corina Lopez
  • $150 from San Leandro City Attorney Jayne Williams

Expenses included:

  • $5,833 to Lew Edwards Group for campaign consulting
  • $4,977 to AdMail for print ads and campaign literature
  • $2,066 to Sphinx Graphics for print ads
  • $1,875 to Christy de Maria for campaign worker salaries

Click here to download the committee's disclosure for October 1 to October 16, 2010.

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October 25, 2010

State Controller Chiang Posts City Salaries, Including San Leandro

In response to the scandal in the City of Bell, where the city manager was receiving a salary of nearly $800,000 and City Councilmembers were being paid $100,000 a year, California State Controller John Chiang has created a web site detailing the salaries of city and county government employees. The site, at http://lgcr.sco.ca.gov/, includes information for the calendar year 2009. To find San Leandro, click on Salary Information under City and look for San Leandro.

A portion of San Leandro's information sorted by salary is reposted here.

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Starosciak Reports $5,000 in Late Contributions

Financial disclosures were published today by the San Leandro City Clerk indicating that mayoral candidate Joyce Starosciak received $5,000 in late contributions to her campaign. Oakland contractor Ken Houston contributed $1,000 on October 22, 2010, and the Economic Development Alliance contributed $4,000 on October 25, 2010.

As previously reported, the Economic Development Alliance is a Los Angeles-based political action committee run by Afton Kobayashi, who is also Director of the Iris Alliance Fund, a mental health foundation founded by Mary Hayashi. The Economic Development Alliance has contributed money mainly to Dennis Hayashi and candidates endorsed by Mary Hayashi.

The contributions bring Starosciak's total raised for the campaign to more than $71,000, including $21,589 transferred from the campaign account used while she was running for San Leandro City Council.

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October 22, 2010

Starosciak Leads Campaign Contributions in Race for Mayor in Latest Period

Once again, San Leandro Councilmember Joyce Starosciak raised $10,780 during the most recent reporting period, leading the field of candidates for San Leandro Mayor. Former school board member Stephen Cassidy followed with contributions of $4,342 and Sara Mestas raised $900. San Leandro's incumbent mayor Tony Santos raised just $600. Lou Filipovich and John Palau are not required to file paperwork because they do not expect to raise or spend more than $1,000.

With 11 days until the election, Starosciak reported $15,868 in her campaign account, followed by Santos with $12,191, Cassidy with $10,473, and Mestas with $1,004.

There are no campaign contribution limits in San Leandro, so individuals and businesses may contribute any amount of money to local campaigns. Donations of $99 or less do not have to be itemized, but candidates are required to report the source of any donation of $100 or greater. Future financial statements are due on January 31, 2011. From now until the election, any contributions of more than $1,000 are required to be reported within 24 hours. The election will be held on November 2, 2010.

Pre-election campaign statements for active campaign accounts were due October 21, 2010, and are summarized below.



Joyce Starosciak, San Leandro City Councilmember, District 4

Starosciak reported campaign funds of $15,868 at the end of the reporting period and no campaign debt. Significant contributions included:

Contributors to Starosciak's campaign included $600 from three employees of Tramutola, the consulting firm to which she has paid more than $25,000 for campaign consulting. In addition, Side Walk Strategies, a firm with the same address as Tramutola, contributed $500 to her campaign.

Starosciak's largest expense was $3,633 to Adept Printing for campaign paraphernalia, followed by $1,233 to Bruce Gordon of Gordon Commercial Real Estate Services for rental of her campaign office at 1505 E. 14th St., and $600 to Daniel Ziegler for campaign literature.

Starosciak's Campaign Statement for October 1 to October 16, 2010



Stephen Cassidy, former member of the San Leandro School Board

Cassidy had $10,473 at the end of the reporting period with $9,080 in debt. Campaign contributions included:

  • $500 from Sunny Tong, Managing Director of Westlake Development Partners
  • $250 from Veronica Mendoza and Robert Mercer
  • $250 from Nikii Torres-Menasco and Ken Menasco
  • $250 from Robert Caruso
  • $250 from Kevin and Nicky Cassidy

Cassidy's expenses included $4,846 to Autumn Press for mailer printing and lawn sign wires, $3,300 to the San Leandro Times for two ads, and $2,520 to Handle With Care for mailing literature.

Cassidy's Campaign Statement for October 1, 2010 to October 16, 2010.


Tony Santos, Incumbent

Santos' reported $12,191 in his campaign account and $4,700 in campaign debt. Contributions included:

Santos' expenses included $4,922 to Handled With Care for postage and mailing services, $3,297 to Autumn Press for campaign literature, $1,294 to Alliance Campaign Strategies for campaign consulting and automated calls, and $565 to Voter Information Guide for a slate mailer.

Santos' Campaign Statement for October 1 to October 16, 2010


Sara Mestas, Member of the Rent Review Board

Mestas reported $1,004 in her campaign account after raising $900 during the reporting period. Contributions included:

Mestas' treasurer, Alexander Morey, has the same address as Kent Entertainment.

Expenses included $299 to Sign Depot for lawn signs and $185 to Chad Pennebaker for an office.

Mestas' Campaign Statement for October 1 to October 16, 2010

Full disclosure: the author, Mike Katz-Lacabe, is on Stephen Cassidy's campaign committee.

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Cutter Leads Latest Fundraising Round but Lopez' Loans Even it Up

San Leandro District 5 City Council candidate Pauline Cutter raised $2,835 during the most most recent reporting period of October 1 to October 16, 2010. Her opponent, Corina Lopez, raised $1,644, but also loaned her campaign $3,500, bringing the total loaned to her campaign to $13,121.

Both candidates are seeking the seat held by Bill Stephens since 2002. Term limits limit the Mayor and members of the City Council to two consecutive terms.

With 11 days until the election, Cutter has $3,230 in her campaign account, compared to Lopez' $1,450.

Overall, Cutter has raised $21,617 and Lopez has raised $9,827, not including the $13,121 she has loaned to her campaign.

Future financial statements are due on January 31, 2011. Between now and the election, any contributions or expenses of more than $1,000 must be reported within 24 hours. The election will be held on November 2, 2010.

Semi-annual campaign statements for active campaign accounts were due October 21, 2010, and are summarized below.


Pauline Cutter, San Leandro School Board Trustee

Cutter reported $3,230 on hand at the end of the reporting period with no outstanding debt. Cutter's contributions included:

Cutter's expenses included $3,865 to Autumn Press for campaign literature and $2,806 to Handled With Care Mailing Service for postage and mailing services.

Cutter's Campaign Statement for October 1 to October 16, 2010.


Corina Lopez, Human Services Commissioner

Lopez had $1,450 at the end of the reporting period with $13,121 in debt. The campaign received the following contributions:

  • $500 from Bulmaro Lopez, a truck driver in Soledad
  • $250 from car dealership owner Anthony Batarse
  • $100 from lobbyist and former California Assembly Member Johan Klehs

Lopez's expenses included $2,500 to Alliance Campaign Strategies for campaign consulting, $1,940 to Autumn Press for her walking piece, and $305 to EM Two Technologies for automated phone calls.

Lopez's Campaign Statement for October 1 to October 16, 2010.

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October 21, 2010

Third Candidate Joins Race for District 1 City Council Seat

On October 11, 2010, Carol Libbrecht qualified as a write-in candidate for the San Leandro City Council District 1 race. Libbrecht, whose name does not appear on the ballot and has had just 10 days to campaign, faces an uphill battle against incumbent Michael Gregory and former Oakland School Board member David Anderson. Libbrecht's supporters will have to write her name on the ballot in order for her to receive a vote.

Libbrecht entered the race about 3 weeks before the election and has an ad in this week's San Leandro Times. She owns Hair Trap Designs on E. 14th St. and is on the boards of the California Cosmetology Association, and the Boys and Girls Club of San Leandro. According to her ad, she is also a member of the San Leandro Historical Society, Alta Mira Club, and San Leandro Downtown Association.

Libbrecht's entry into the race means that there is a small chance that ranked choice voting (RCV, aka instant runoff) could be used for the District 1 San Leandro City Council election if neither Gregory or Anderson receives more than 50% of the vote in the first round.

The election will be held on November 2, 2010, and the deadline to register to vote has already passed.

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Free Whooping Cought Shots Tues. October 26

Davis Street Family Resource Center is offering free whooping cough shots on Tuesday, October 26, 2010, from 3pm to 7pm.

Pertussis, known as whooping cough, was characterized as an epidemic in California in June 2010, by Mark Horton, director of the California Department of Public Health. It is highly contagious and is deadly for young infants. According to the Alameda County Department of Public Health, there have been 275 cases of pertussis this year and no deaths in Alameda County. In California, there have 5,658 cases and 9 deaths, nearly all infants younger than three months.

According to a flyer about the free shots, "You need a whooping cough booster if;"

  • You are an adult and have never had a whooping cough booster shot

  • You are 10 years or older

  • You are new parents or caretaker of a baby younger than one year

  • You are a child 7-9 years and missing 1 or more DPaT shots

  • You are a child entering 7th through 12th grade you will need proof of a Tdap booster shot before starting school for the 2011-2012 school year"

Davis Street Family Resource Center is located at 3081 Teagarden Street in San Leandro.

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October 18, 2010

Local Political Committees Recent Financial Disclosures

On October 5, 2010, candidates for political office were required to disclose financial details of their campaign contributions and expenditures. Committees were also required to disclose their finances as well.

Citizens for San Leandro Schools received $59,790 in contributions during the July 1 to September 30, 2010, reporting period. The largest contributions were:

Other contributions included

  • $2,000 from the San Leandro Police Officers Association
  • $250 from former San Leandro City Manager John Jermanis
  • $200 from Alameda County Supervisor Alice Lai-Bitker's campaign committee

Total expenditures for the reporting period were $37,698. The largest expenditures were $15,000 to campaign consultant Connell Lindh, $8,685 to Accurate Mailings for mailing three letters, and $6313 to Bayside Printed Products for printing of door hangers and letters.

At the end of the reporting period, the committee had $51,398 in its account with no debt.

Citizens for San Leandro Schools' Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


Protect San Leandro Services Committee for Measure Z received $58,375 in contributions during the reporting period. The committee received the following contributions:

Expenditures for the committee totaled $20,525 and included $8,333 to the Lew Edwards Group, $3,750 to Christy de Maria for campaign worker salaries, $2,000 to Sphinx Graphics for campaign literature, and $1,890 to Election Education Guide, a slate mailer. The Lew Edwards Group is the same organization hired for $61,000 in November 2009 by the City of San Leandro to educate San Leandro voters about the City's need for increased revenues.

At the end of the reporting period, the committee had $37,850 in its account with no debt.

Protect San Leandro Services Committee for Measure Z's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


The Sentinels, a group of local business owners, received $3,850 in contributions during the reporting period, including contributions from new Sentinels members René Mendieta, a member of the Board of Zoning Adjustments, Ken Pon, a former member of the San Leandro School Board, and Chad Pennebaker, owner of Douglas of Electronics.

Expenditures for The Sentinels totaled $10,100 and included:

The Sentinels' Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


The campaign disclosure for Political Action Committee for Excellence (PACE) was not available at the Alameda County Registrar of Voters as of October 15, 2010. However, most of the group's expenditures were noted in a previous post.


San Leandro Teachers Advocating New Directions (STAND) reported no contributions in the most recent reporting period. Expenditures included $250 to Citizens for San Leandro Schools and $250 to San Leandro School Board candidate Lance James. At the end of the reporting period, STAND reported $10,633 in its account with no debt.

STAND's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


The San Leandro Police Officers Association filed paperwork to establish a recipient committee on October 1, 2010. A previous San Leandro Police Officers Association recipient committee was terminated in October 1997. The group has contributed at least $2,500 to candidates since 2004. No financial disclosures were available for the group.

San Leandro Police Officers Association Statement of Organization.

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Dead Male Found in San Leandro Creek on Sunday, October 17

According to updated information from the San Leandro Police, a deceased male was discovered in San Leandro Creek at approximately 6:15pm on Sunday, October, 17, 2010. The body was observed in the area of San Leandro Creek near Memorial Park and was reported to police by two residents who had been out for a walk. The victim, possibly a transient, was pronounced dead at the scene by Alameda County Fire Department personnel. San Leandro Police originally suspected foul play, but police now are leaning away from homicide, according to San Leandro Police Chief Ian Willis. An autopsy is scheduled to be performed on Tuesday, October 19, 2010. If you have any information about the victim, please contact the San Leandro Police Department at (510) 577-2740.

Update, 10/18 at 8:54am: According to a posting on a homeowner association mailing list, the victim was a male in his 20s or 30s.

Update, 10/18 at 1:17pm: Revised with new information from the San Leandro Police.

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October 17, 2010

New Report Pegs San Leandro With Highest Rate of Tuberculosis in Alameda County

Health_of_Alameda_County_cover_2010.jpg

A July 2010 report by the Alameda County Department of Public Health (ACDPH) shows San Leandro with the highest rate of tuberculosis and a high rate of asthma-related emergency room visits. Numerous statistics and comparisons related to a variety of health and well-being measures are included in the report. The report, entitled "The Health of Alameda County Cities and Places" was prepared by the ACDPH and commissioned by Hospital Council of Northern and Central California and generally covers data from 2006 to 2008.

For San Leandro, some of the most interesting findings are the high rate of tuberculosis, the high crime and homicide mortality rate, and the high incidence of asthma.

"The purpose of the report is to inform the hospital community about the health status of county and city residents; to identify gaps in services; and to assist in developing programs that target appropriate population sub-groups and health conditions." The report notes that "communities of color and low-income communities continue to fare poorest on most key health indicators" but does not delve into the root causes for any of the conditions or gaps identified.

The rate of tuberculosis cases in San Leandro was highest in Alameda County with 13.8 cases per 100,000 from 2007 to 2009, compared to the county average of 9.8. In real numbers, that means about 11 cases of tuberculosis in San Leandro, since the population is less than 100,000. San Leandro had the third-highest rate of HIV/AIDS cases, behind Emeryville and Oakland. For sexually-transmitted diseases, San Leandro was well below the county average.

In the crime category, San Leandro has the fourth highest rate of property crime out of the 15 Alameda County cities, behind Berkeley, Emeryville, and Oakland. For violent crime, San Leandro trails only Oakland and Emeryville. San Leandro's rate of assault emergency department visits was second highest, behind Oakland.

One of the more surprising statistics was the homicide mortality by city, with San Leandro's rate of 13.2 per 100,000 second only to Oakland's 23.5 per 100,000. Since the rate is based on where the person resided rather than where the person was killed, this may be skewed by San Leandro residents who were killed elsewhere.

The top three leading causes of death in San Leandro are the same as for Alameda County as a whole: heart disease, cancer, and stroke. Those born in San Leandro have a life expectancy of 81 years, slightly below the 81.4 years for Alameda County as a whole and well below the 88.2 years of Emeryville.

San Leandro Unified School District had the fifth-highest percentage of overweight children (33.6%), behind Emeryville (50.3%), Hayward (38.4%), San Lorenzo (36.4%), and Oakland (36.4%).

San Leandro was below the county average for diabetes mortality, hospitalization for coronary heart disease, and stroke hospitalization, but third highest for stroke mortality. San Leandro had the third-highest rate of asthma emergency visits, behind Oakland and Hayward and the second-highest rate of asthma hospitalization for children less than five years old.

The lung cancer rate for San Leandro was fourth highest, behind Alameda, Oakland, and Livermore, but the mortality rate from lung cancer was third highest. San Lorenzo had the highest rate of colorectal cancer, while San Leandro was below the county average. San Leandro was below the county's rate for both female breast cancer and prostate cancer.

For injuries, San Leandro had a rate of unintentional injury emergency department visits slightly higher than the county average with deaths from unintentional injuries below the county average. Death from motor vehicle accidents in San Leandro was the second-lowest rate in the county.

San Leandro had the fifth-highest rate of teen births, just above the county average.

An estimated 15% of adults and 6% of children in San Leandro don't have health insurance.

The report notes some stark differences between ethnic groups, but not at the city level.

The complete 278-page report can be downloaded from http://www.acphd.org/AXBYCZ/Admin/DataReports/cape_00_health_accities_fullrpt.pdf. The overall findings for Alameda County as a whole are contained in the Executive Summary.

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October 15, 2010

Former City Manager Jermanis' Team Wins Trivia Bee

trivia_bee_winners_2010.jpg

Former San Leandro City Manager John Jermanis' team was the only team to correctly answer all of the last round of questions to win Project Literacy's 17th annual Trivia Bee held on October 15, 2010, at the Marina Community Center. Second place went to the Gift Shop - Friends of the Library Team. After a tie with the Yes on Measure M and Singers & the Chap Next Door teams, the Chapman King team came in third.

As in past years, Alameda County Superior Court Judge Robert Kurtz read questions for the first round and Leslie Frates, a San Leandro resident and former professor at Cal State East Bay who has appeared on the television quiz show Jeopardy 14 times, read questions for the second and third rounds. Kathy Kurtz served as the official time keeper and John Kaplan was the emcee. Students from San Leandro High School acted as scorekeepers for each of the thirty teams.

In addition to the Trivia Bee, a raffle featured a flat-screen television, Disneyland tickets, an iPod Touch, and dozens of other prizes from local businesses and individuals. Funds raised by the Trivia Bee help Project Literacy to provide literacy services to more than 200 adults and 1,500 kids each year.

Thirty teams competed in the annual fundraiser that brings in more than $10,000 each year for Project Literacy. Teams included businesses like State Roofing Systems, California Conservatory Theater, San Leandro Players, the San Leandro Chamber of Commerce, Wells Fargo, and the San Leandro Police Officers Association.

Among the political teams, Stephen Cassidy for Mayor and Joyce, Our Choice tied in the third round, followed closely by Mayor Tony Santos' team. The Mike Katz for School Board team (that's me) didn't make it past the second round and the Pontificators for Pauline Cutter team didn't make it past the first round. Santos, Cassidy and Katz were members of their teams; Cutter and Starosciak were not.

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October 14, 2010

17th Annual Trivia Bee Friday October 15

Project Literacy's 17th Annual Trivia Bee will be held on Friday, October 15, 2010, at the Marina Community Center. The annual fundraiser for Project Literacy raises more than $10,000 each year and includes a raffle for prizes such as an iPod Touch and tickets to Disneyland.

Dinner starts at 6pm and tickets are available at the door for $30. The trivia competition begins at 7:30pm.

Thirty teams are signed up to compete, including last year's winners, Alameda County Firefighters Local 55. Since this is an election year, political teams include Mayoral candidates Stephen Cassidy, Tony Santos and Joyce Starosciak, City Council candidate Pauline Cutter, School Board candidate Mike Katz (that's me), and the "Yes on Measure M" team, supporting the school bond. Previous winning teams San Leandro Players and Twenty Four Desperate Lost Heroes will also be vying for the top spot.

The Marina Community Center is located at 15301 Wicks Blvd. in San Leandro.

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October 7, 2010

District 1 San Leandro City Council Candidates at Second Candidate Forum

The District 1 San Leandro City Council candidates met at a second forum on Thursday, September 30, 2010, to make their case to San Leandro voters. Former Oakland School Board member David Anderson is seeking to unseat incumbent San Leandro City Council member Michael Gregory. Gregory was elected to the City Council in 2006. The forum, sponsored by the League of Women Voters and the San Leandro Chamber of Commerce, was held at the Marina Community Center.

Here are the candidates in their own words:

Opening statements:

What is your reaction to the headline story in the San Leandro Times about the recent rash of robberies in the City and what do you think is the solution to this problem?

What specific plans do you have to identify and secure sustainable funding to open and operate the senior community center?

More after the break.

What is being done to bring new large companies to San Leandro? What type of incentives would you recommend you offer?

Do you feel Measure Z could have a negative impact on our City? Might big ticket items such as cars be purchased in other cities, thus decreasing revenue?

What are San Leandro's plans for electric vehicle charging stations, specifically the Callan Start Garage Project?

Closing statements:

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District 5 City Council Candidates at Second Candidate Forum

The District 5 San Leandro City Council candidates met at a second forum on Thursday, September 30, 2010, to make their case to San Leandro voters. San Leandro School Board Trustee Pauline Cutter and Human Resources Commissioner Corina Lopez are both seeking the seat currently held by Bill Stephens, who cannot run for re-election because of term limits. The forum, sponsored by the League of Women Voters and the San Leandro Chamber of Commerce, was held at the Marina Community Center.

Here are the candidates in their own words:

Opening statements:

What is your reaction to the headline story in the San Leandro Times about the recent rash of robberies in the City and what do you think is the solution to this problem?

"What specific plans do you have to identify and secure sustainable funding to open and operate the senior community center?

More after the break.

What is being done to bring new large companies to San Leandro? What type of incentives would you recommend you offer?

Do you feel Measure Z could have a negative impact on our City? Might big ticket items such as cars be purchased in other cities, thus decreasing revenue?

What are San Leandro's plans for electric vehicle charging stations, specifically the Callan Start Garage Project?

Closing statements:

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Lopez Edges Cutter in Recent Fundraising for District 5 City Council Race

In the race for the District 5 San Leandro City Council seat, Corina Lopez raised $7,296 during the most recent reporting period, slighting edging out the $6,395 raised by Pauline Cutter. With less than a month to go before the election, Cutter had $5,666 more in her campaign account than Lopez.

Both candidates are seeking the seat held by Bill Stephens since 2002. Term limits limit the Mayor and members of the City Council to two consecutive terms.

Future financial statements are due on October 21 in 2010 and January 31, 2011. The last day to register to vote is Monday, October 18 and the election will be held on November 2, 2010.

Semi-annual campaign statements for active campaign accounts were due October 5, 2010, and are summarized below.


Pauline Cutter, San Leandro School Board Trustee

Cutter reported $7,328 on hand at the end of the reporting period with no outstanding debt. Cutter's contributions included $1,000 each from local women's group Political Action Committee for Excellence and California Apartment Association Political Action Committee, $500 from the Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, and $250 each from Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1555, Operating Engineers Local 3, and Steamfitters Local 342.

Cutter's expenses included $1536 to BelAire Displays for lawn signs, $1,296 to Autumn Press for campaign literature, and $600 to Vo's Restaurant for a fundraiser.

Cutter's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


Corina Lopez, Human Services Commissioner

Lopez had $1,662 at the end of the reporting period with $9,621 in debt. The campaign received contributions of $3,000 from The Sentinels, $500 each from former City Councilmember Gordan [sic] Galvan, Alameda County Firefighters Association, Pleasanton Garbage Service owner Robert Molinaro, and Michael Lopez, a student in Soledad, California. Lopez also loaned her campaign an additional $6,554.

Lopez's expenses included $5,500 to Alliance Campaign Strategies for campaign consulting, $1,980 to Prime Signs for lawn signs, $984 to Voter Guide Slate Cards for slate card mailers, and $743 to Van Austen Creative for web page and content design.

Lopez's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.

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Gregory Leads Fundraising in DIstrict 1 City Council Race

Councilmember Michael Gregory outraised challenger David Anderson $6,674 to $605 in the race for the District 1 San Leandro City Council seat during the most recent reporting period.

Future financial statements are due on October 21, 2010 and January 31, 2011. The election will be held on November 2, 2010.

Semi-annual campaign statements for active campaign accounts were due October 5, 2010, and are summarized below.

Michael Gregory, Incumbent

Gregory reported $7,059 on hand at the end of the reporting period. Gregory's contributions included $1,500 from The Sentinels, $1,000 from the California Apartment Association Political Action Committee, $500 each from the Change Income Property Partnership, Creekside Associates, and Donna Reed (wife of Planning Commissioner Dale Reed), $300 from the Alameda County Firefighters Association, $250 each from Board of Zoning Adjustments member Philip Daly and Eden Realty, and $200 from car dealership owner Anthony Batarse.

Gregory reported no expenses except for a filing fee.

Gregory's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.

David Anderson, former member of the Oakland School Board

Anderson had $2,338 at the end of the reporting period. The campaign received contributions of $100 each from Mary Anderson, Mildred Gardner, and Gloria Ricardo. Although most financial statements don't include contributions smaller than $100, Anderson listed contributions of $20 from former San Leandro City Councilmember Surlene Grant and current San Leandro City Councilmember Joyce Starosciak. Anderson also loaned his campaign an additional $1,733.66.

Anderson's expenses included $631 to Oakland Print and Copy Center for campaign literature, $350 to unlisted recipients for food for a fundraiser, and $304 to the US Post Office for postage.

Anderson's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.

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October 6, 2010

Mayoral Candidate Starosciak Leads Latest Round of Fundraising

Councilmember Joyce Starosciak raised $14,962 during the most recent reporting period, leading the field of candidates for San Leandro Mayor. Former school board member Stephen Cassidy followed with contributions of $10,270, followed by San Leandro's incumbent mayor Tony Santos with $8,899. Sara Mestas raised $785. Lou Filipovich and John Palau are not required to file paperwork because they do not expect to raise or spend more than $1,000.

With less than a month to go, Santos reported the most cash on hand, with $22,954, followed by Cassidy with $18,380, Starosciak with $11,181, and Mestas with $588.

There are no campaign contribution limits in San Leandro, so individuals and businesses may contribute any amount of money to local campaigns. Donations of $99 or less do not have to be itemized, but candidates are required to report the source of any donation of $100 or greater. Future financial statements are due on October 21 in 2010 and January 31, 2011. The election will be held on November 2, 2010.

Semi-annual campaign statements for active campaign accounts were due October 5, 2010, and are summarized below.


Joyce Starosciak, San Leandro City Councilmember, District 4

Starosciak reported campaign funds of $11,181 at the end of September and no campaign debt. Significant contributions included $3,500 from Creekside Associates, $1,000 each from the San Leandro Police Officers Association, government relations-advocacy firm owner Christopher Townsend, and local women's group Political Action Committee for Excellence, $750 from property developer Brandenbury, Staedler & Moore [sic], and $500 each from Thomas Dlugosh, Chang Income Property, Bayfair Center consultant Quadric Group, and 7-11 owner Amarjit Sekhon,

Starosciak's largest expense was $5,032 to Tramutola for campaign consulting, followed by $1,667 to Bruce Gordon of Gordon Commercial Real Estate Services for rental of her campaign office at 1505 E. 14th St., and $1,200 to Belleci Designs for campaign literature.

Starosciak's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


Stephen Cassidy, former member of the San Leandro School Board

Cassidy had $18,380 at the end of the reporting period with $9,080 in debt. The campaign received contributions of $590 from property manager John Sullivan, $500 each from Creekside Associates, attorney Joseph Saveri, Charles Ramsey's campaign committee, attorney Melissa Obegi, and Innisfree Ventures .

Cassidy's expenses included $4,575 to Autumn Press for campaign literature and lawn signs, $2,851 to Handle With Care for mailing literature, and $900 to Costco for campaign literature.

Cassidy's Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


Tony Santos, Incumbent

Santos' contributions included $4,000 from The Sentinels, a $3,700 loan from Santos to his campaign, $1,000 from the Central Labor Council, and $500 each from Alameda County Firefighters Local 55, Marina Mechanical owner James Hussey, Overhead Doors owner Eric Eisfeld, and Creekside Partners.

Santos' expenses included $5,000 to Alliance Campaign Strategies for campaign consulting, $2,500 to Community Outreach Services for various campaign services, $1,716 to Autumn Press for campaign literature, $1,000 to Charles Gilcrest for campaign Consulting, and $934 to Voter Guide Slate Cards for a slate mailer.

Santos' Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


Sara Mestas, Member of the Rent Review Board

Mestas reported $588 in her campaign account after raising $785 during the reporting period. Contributions included $396 from Mestas to her own campaign and $350 from Round Table Pizza.

Expenses included $370 to Chad Pennebaker for an office, $100 to CVS for gift cards, and $100 to Tasche Cryor for a DJ at a fundraiser.

Mestas' Campaign Statement for July 1 to September 30, 2010.


$53,000 to Campaign Consultants So Far

Campaign consultant Tramutola has received $25,249 from Starosciak's campaign, while Community Outreach Services has received $18,127 from Santos' campaign. Santos also paid $9,000 to Alliance Campaign Strategies and $1,000 to Charles Gilcrest for campaign consulting.

Oakland-based Tramutola also manages campaigns for Alameda County Supervisor-elect Wilma Chan, Alameda County Supervisor candidate Nadia Lockyer, and Oakland mayoral candidate Don Perata. Hayward-based Community Outreach Services is run by Eden Realty owner Tom Silva of San Lorenzo. Alliance Campaign Strategies is run by Alice Lai-Bitker Chief of Staff Shawn Wilson, Alameda County Democratic Party Central Committee Vice Chair Royce Kelley, and Angela Ramirez Holmes.

Cassidy's campaign is managed by volunteer Tim Holmes and Mestas is managing her own campaign. Filipovich and Palau are not expected to campaign at all.

Full disclosure: the author, Mike Katz-Lacabe, is on Stephen Cassidy's campaign committee.

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October 4, 2010

San Leandro Receives Grant to Fund Five Cops for Three Years

SL_police_logo.png On September 30, 2010, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that the City of San Leandro would receive an estimated grant of $2,417,175 to fund five police officers for three years. The recipients are required to fund the positions for a fourth year. The grant was made under the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), which "advances the practice of community policing" by "making grants to police departments around the United States."

In 2009, the City of San Leandro was unsuccessful in its application for a COPS grant to fund six police officer positions. Oakland and Hayward were among nearby cities receiving a portion of the nearly $1 billion in COPS grants.

According to the City's COPS grant application, the City plans to fund the fourth year of these police officer positions from general funds and by raising a "bond/tax issue." The application lists the cost of the positions in the first year at $151,550 per officer ($78,075 in salary plus $73,475 in benefits), second year at $161,399 per officer ($82,782 in salary plus $78,617 in benefits) and the third year at $170,486 per officer ($86,938 in salary plus $83,548 in benefits).

This year, 27 COPS grants were awarded to California jurisdictions out of the 200 jurisdictions that applied. According to the US Department of Justice website, "The COPS Office employed a very similar methodology as in fiscal year 2009 and determined that fiscal health factors would account for 50% of the total score and reported crime and planned community policing activities would also account for 50% of the final score. In this manner, the COPS Office evenly valued the importance of fiscal distress against reported crime and community policing strategies."

The City of San Leandro's score ranked 24th among the 200 applicants from California according to the applicant rankings. Each of the 23 jurisdictions with a higher score received a COPS grant. Three lower scoring jurisdictions also received COPS grants, including two tribal applicants. All tribal applicants received COPS grants regardless of their score.

In a press release about the COPS grant, the City of San Leandro noted that although the COPS grant would fund five new police positions, the City will eliminate seven police officers if Measure Z fails to pass. Measure Z is a 0.25% increase in the sales tax that will appear on the November 2, 2010 ballot.

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Mayoral Candidates at Second Forum

San Leandro Mayoral candidates met at a second forum on Thursday, September 30, 2010. The forum, sponsored by the League of Women Voters and the San Leandro Chamber of Commerce, was held at the Marina Community Center.

Here are the candidates in their own words:

What is your position on Measures M and Z and why?

What are your specific plans to identify and secure sustainable funding to open and operate the senior community center?

More after the break.

What percentage of the city's budget goes to police and fire salaries and pensions and how much to pay retired police and firemen and what will you do to reduce those costs?

What is your position on the legalization of marijuana and its production in San Leandro?

Why are you the best qualified candidate?

Closing statements:

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