Monday, August 30, 2010

Answer to Causa Justa :: Just Cause's housing question.


“With the number of foreclosures nationally topping 6 million (since 2007), and an Oakland average of 1 in every 156 homes reaching foreclosure in July - what plans do you have, as Mayor, to address this local housing crisis and stem the continuing tide of displacement in Oakland."


Here is my answer:

As mayor I would work to put pressure on the note holders to either re-negotiate their loans or to take title of foreclosed homes without evicting the families in default. (the families would become tenants with tenants rights) There are many carrots for the banks, including offsetting the high cost of foreclosure, the high cost of eviction and the high cost of homes sitting empty. An added incentive comes in the form of neighborhood with a low vacancy rate, which is very key in conserving property values. For a stick we can do the opposite. I would raise the cost of foreclosure, the price of eviction and the heavily punish vacancy.

Other cities in the USA have placed heavy fines on landlords with vacant housing with extra penalties for boarding a building up. That policy was usually matched with use of eminent domain where the city was able to seize boarded up housing, refurbish it and rent it out passing the repair bills back to the property owners. These kinds of policies are usually threat enough to cause the owners to put affordable housing back on the market and gives the city a final card to play if they do not. Oakland has some pieces of this that I would enhance into a more compressive housing regulation and rent control.

Our housing crisis is not caused by us, but falls on us to deal with the social pain that it causes.
The federal government fell down on the job and continues to not rise to the occasion.
The state loan and property tax environment is a windfall for some and a disaster for most of us.
The market is not providing housing in a socially useful way, made all the worse by Prop 13.
Both the boom and the bust has been harmful for normal working class people who rent or own.

Housing should be a right, not a high stakes, roulette wheel, investment. This is my view and the view of the Green Party for the same reasons of social solidarity that we believe in universal health care and a right to an education. A healthy society takes care of its own.

As mayor I would hold up the view that housing is a right and providing it is a social responsibility.


Don Macleay
(510) 866-7488


Sent to:

Amber McZeal
Communications & Oakland Housing Rights Organizer
Causa Justa :: Just Cause
(the union of St. Peter's Housing Committee and Just Cause Oakland)
Unity is Strength! La Union Hace La Fuerza!
MAILING: PO Box 3596 | Oakland, CA 94609
MAIN OAKLAND OFFICE: 3463 San Pablo Ave., Oakland, CA
PHONE: 510.763.5877 ext. 405 | fax: 510.763.5824



Please return this questionnaire with your answers included after its question.

1. Why do you want to run for Mayor? What is your vision and what are your priorities for the City, and how would you implement them?

My first reason for running for Mayor is to be the advocate for the city. I see this as a stand and deliver kind of job and if elected I will be one of those mayors you see everywhere reaching out to the public and on campaign for the city’s projects.

The main theme of my campaign is one of STRUCTURAL REFORM.

Reform of the criminal justice system, of which Oakland is only a part.
Reform of the council and charter with a representative council with checks and balances.
Reform of the budget from top to bottom bringing a new budget process before the voters.

2. How would you implement environmental policies? Would you re-establish an Office of Sustainability, or has the sustainability function been effective within the Public Works Department? How would you integrate sustainability within CEDA and other departments? How will the Mayor’s office be structured to address sustainability?

My strongly held view is that city hall is over complicated. I believe that CEDA and Public Work, along with zoning, planning, and permitting all should be helping implement an environmental plan. I do not find them effective and many policies loose a lot of value in the details and implementation. Our bike paths and our building codes are two good examples. Having an Office of Sustainability does not equal a strong, detailed set of policies. The elected officials have the responsibility of providing those policies. We have some good ones and some that seem more like a laundry list. I really feel that this problem is part and parcel of the lack of a general office of oversight. If we set one up, as I advocate, I see a place for commissions with true review and investigation powers. One of those commissions would be for the implementation of our environmental policies, one for community policing, one for the budget, one for police complaints and so on.

3. Development in the older urban centers helps the environment by redirecting new development away from wild and rural land on the edge of the urbanized region. What is your vision of future development for Oakland, both in downtown and in the neighborhoods? What is your vision for development in Oakland’s designated priority development areas? Should minimum parking requirements in the Zoning Ordinance be reduced, waived, or eliminated?

I am in favor of urban density and opposed to any more wild or rural land being developed.

I believe in a system of Neighborhood centers, each zoned to allow for transit centers, shopping, essential services, schools, and mixed use buildings.

The development area plans give me some certain pause. They are based on a market economy concept and has many projections along those lines, but do not have the number of client partners I would like to see to make them work. The environmental additions I have seen on the Valdez Triangle plan look like little more than window dressing to me. Some plans, such as Oak to Ninth, should probably be scrapped and the lands turned back into green space.

Where we do build up we need plans that are sustainable environmentally and economically. Infrastructure is where I would put more resources, especially transit. If we want people out of their cars, we need a place to either store a car or good alternatives to owning a car. So far the alternatives are insufficient, but they are well within our reach if the city works on infrastructure first and does not depend on the market to create a need. The need is there and it is up to government to provide the regulations, create the urban schools, rec, park and public spaces and build the transit.

4. Affordability of housing remains an issue for many Oakland residents, and in planning for a future balance in jobs-housing match. What would you do to address this problem? If the Palmer decision is overturned or if state law is amended, would you support an inclusionary zoning ordinance, and if so, at what percentage? Do you support an affordable housing mitigation fee, and at what level?

I do not support an affordable housing mitigation fee. Since housing is in the private sector we need some private sector solutions. This is one of the reasons I believe in split roll taxation and inclusionary zoning. I think of affordable housing as working class housing, not some kind of welfare. What we need to do is protect the working class housing market space, both for renters and home owners. To do that it needs to be profitable to provide housing to that market. We should look at the overall percentage of needed working class housing across the city and fix goals by area, not an arbitrary percentage. Some areas and some projects should be more and some should be less and transit should be a big part of how we decide that.

In a world of Prop 13 and bowing down to Pro 13 thinking without much of a challenge, I do not seem much leadership from the state to change much of the property tax structure that is one of the two main engines behind rent inflation. Oakland should advocate better policies and should ask for an exemption to use a more fair and rational tax method. This is the budget fight of our decade and Oakland must make its voice heard here.

5. Do you support preserving existing open space in the Oakland Hills?


- Should there be additional residential growth on undeveloped areas of the Oakland Hills?


- Do you support preserving the land in and around the Dunsmuir estate?

- What is your position on the Oakland Zoo proposal to fence 56 acres of open space in Knowland Park?
I have not followed this one.

6. What are your views on the Oakland Creek Ordinance? Do you support restricting development within the setback to protect open and culverted creeks?

I am in favor of the setbacks and in restoring culverted creeks. I do not know the Oakland ordinance well enough to comment. When I was a Diamond District resident I was involved in a minor way with the The Friends of Sausal Creek and if that is the kind of creek bed care we are talking about, I am in favor of it. There are two good examples in Berkeley of these re-opened creeks. These are the kinds of ideas the help the environment, create health public parks and spaces and increase land values.

7. The city and the Port of Oakland are planning 425 acres of the former Oakland Army Base together with the base's master developers. What are your priorities for how this important piece of real estate should be planned?

I am very skeptical and concerned about this plan. It sure looks good for the master developers, but for the rest, I have my doubts. Of course it was not very long ago that we had a different plan that involved car dealerships. This is one of the projects where I ask who the clients are. For example, the upper Broadway plan has been revised with less requirements on the building owners because the Uptown project did not sell as well as projected.

This opens up an entire discussion, which we should have, about the redevelopment commission. In this election we have not been talking enough about the council’s other role as the redevelopment committee. The redevelopment budget is larger that the city discretionary budget and needs much more public scrutiny. We can not use this money for general funds, but I question the wisdom of these projects without the heavy spending in infrastructure that we need. There are better choices that could be made here and I feel that they are not getting considered. We do not always have to think in terms of projects with a builder.

8. The Port of Oakland plans to double the number of containers entering and leaving the Port by 2020, with increased emissions of air and particulate pollution in nearby communities.
- How do you evaluate the Port’s current efforts to reduce air pollution?

I think this is an area where Oakland and other ports should band together and do what we can to go eclectic. This is very possible with redevelopment and stimulus funding.

- Do you support a container fee that would be dedicated to air quality improvements such as truck replacements and retrofits, and electrification?

Yes, and I think the port should continue to the city general fund. What we need is a sustainable tax plan that is based on performance.

- Should a new railyard serving the Port be required so that all rail cars use best available control technology, and limit idling?

Yes but, I strongly feel that we should work together with the federal authorities to be in compliance with the standards for our rail system. We do have a way to electrify the tracks and we do not need another piece of incompatible infrastructure, such as BART.

- Will you include residents impacted by air pollution, and leaders committed to reducing air pollution, in your appointments to the Board of Port Commissioners?
- Yes of course, and I will include a reform of the Board as part of charter reform.

9. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District has identified communities in West Oakland and East Oakland as areas with high cumulative air pollution. Should the City of Oakland work with BAAQMD to develop a community risk reduction plan (CRRP) for these communities?

Yes of course.

- Should a CRRP limit new sources of pollution to more stringent levels in East and West Oakland? (i.e. no additional heavy industrial sources)
- Yes of course.

- Should a CRRP require use of best available control technology for construction equipment to reduce particulate pollution by up to 85% and protect community health?

Yes of course.

- What other measures would you support to improve air quality in Oakland?

At your forum I said that we should plant trees as if our lives depended on it. This is one of the cases. Green buffers around our freeways and pollution centers and heavily tree lined streets go a long way towards abetment. It is no replacement for pollution reduction, but together with pollution reduction urban trees can help clean the air, reduce heat and cooling costs and greatly reduce noise at the same time it can help us return gray waters to the aquifer.

10. The City of Oakland is in the process of developing a Energy and Climate Action Plan, which calls for a reduction in Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) to 36 percent below the 2005 level by 2020. Many of the measures suggested by the ECAP call for additional funding and staffing, and to fund all the recommended priority actions in the ECAP is projected to cost $11 million. How will you ensure that climate action in Oakland has sufficient funding so that its measures will lead to action?

Frankly, this is one of those areas where the commitment is great, but the process is a bit of an overreach. Why are we doing what is really the State of California’s job and why should a cash strapped urban core city be budgeting for this. Serious climate reduction requires bigger players such as regional transit, auto manufacturers, energy providers. I seriously believe in Oakland participating agressivly in big ticket projects that will make a difference.

11. In terms of the Port and City working on Climate Action, the Sierra Club commented in response to the draft ECAP that the Port is not being pushed by the City to partner in developing climate change reduction strategies. The Port is one of Oakland single biggest contributors to carbon / greenhouse gas emissions. How do you suggest the City do to get the Port to contribute its share in funding and planning for climate action?

That the Port needs to do its share, fall fully in line with City plans and pay its share is a given.
We need to appoint a board that will cooperate and not obstruct.

12. Nearly 66% of Alameda County residents voted against Proposition 16, which would have restricted local governments from implementing Community Choice Aggregation (CCA). A CCA would provide participating jurisdictions the ability to set targets for renewable energy procurement, offer lower rates for electricity generation, direct investments for green jobs and energy efficiency upgrades, while maintaining PG&E as the transmission and distribution provider. Do you support partnering with additional East Bay jurisdictions to provide a greener renewable energy portfolio through a CCA?

I have run a local electrical generation station in a rural setting. I am not opposed to Oakland getting involved with such a program in the urban setting. CCA is a method of investing in the generation infrastructure and giving the communities a choice. I will support it only because the State is not doing what it should be doing and that is to regulate PG&E and the other suppliers and REQUIRE that they convert to renewable. As far as I am concerned they are a state regulated monopoly out of control.

13. Oakland has historically not played a leadership role in the Bay Area on transportation issues. How would you remedy this? What is your vision for Oakland as an urban core public transportation and freight hub?

Of course we are a major hub. My vision is to expand that inside a strong regional transit plan.

- As Mayor, you have the opportunity to influence the selection and performance of the representative of Alameda County cities on MTC, BAAQMD, BCDC, and ABAG.

We in Oakland really need to engage the process as it is, but also demand better. The 9 year fiasco to get a common BART/Bus ticket is a prime example of how poorly our regional transit and regional government work. Part of engaging the process is to make sure we have strong city advocates representing us and to make participating in the regional meetings part and parcel of the mayor’s job. We also have to make sure that the city is better served by the BART and AC Transit boards. The city should speak up about the district boundaries too.

What would you do to support Mayor Bates’ role?
I do not know enough about Mayor Bate’s role to comment. What I have heard so far seems to accept the logic of having all these overlapping levels of transit and regional government.

14. What is your position, and why, on currently proposed transportation projects, including:

I do not want to get into each one of these in detail. They are all well intentioned projects deserving of support or being addressed with a good alternative. They are also muddling along in an environment where we do not really invest in infrastructure nor do we really support operations. I am in favor of massive public spending and expansion in transit. We do not have that kind of commitment to transit from our region, state or federal government. We also need a funding model that is government based. Somehow the overall savings of mass transit to the community has to translate into stable funding for operations and reliable service. I do not think the mayor, or council should be micromanaging these efforts and should be advocating on behalf our city for a real commitment to transit.

- Telegraph-International Blvd Bus Rapid Transit
- AC Transit “Rapid Bus” improvements on Macarthur Blvd; Broadway-College, other corridors
- BART extensions to Livermore, San Jose, e-BART, etc. Do you believe that these can be implemented without reducing current levels of service?
- High Speed Rail (Please address both the Altamont and Pacheco alignments, and the implications of extending a route to Oakland)
- Additional projects and transit services you would initiate as Mayor
- Please comment on potential regional revenue sources for public transit. Would you support a regional fee on gas or vehicle miles traveled, or other additional sources (please be specific)?

15. The BART Oakland Airport Connector project is likely to proceed. How would you help to ensure that the civil rights of residents and passengers are balanced and protected in comparison to contractor employment opportunities? What will you do to ensure that the full BART seismic retrofit program is constructed safely and promptly throughout all of Oakland , adjoining communities, and the Tube?

I am seriously opposed to this project. I support Transform’s opposition to this project.
So I have not yet converted over to figuring out how to make this part of it work.
The other aspects of the project, such as the price and the lack or real benefit remain objectionable.

The BART seismic retrofit is like any other retrofit except that it is URGENT. Again, Oakland’s role is to require accountability from BART.

16. What are your priorities for the proposed reauthorization of Measure B?

I have mixed feeling about the measure. I do not like the methods, but do not like the consequences when the funds are lost. It feels like two bad choices.

- Should AC Transit funding be increased, decreased, or remain the same, and why?

All transit funding should be increased. The cuts are way over what the system should take.

- What other programs to reduce driving and provide transit access should be included?

Problem number one is more frequent busses

- One proposal currently being discussed by community groups is to provide every middle and high-school student in Alameda County with a free bus pass. What are your thoughts on how to implement such a program, including getting the schools to assist in the implementation and monitoring?

We need buss passes and we need buss passes for students. Schools can distribute passes. This is really a small thing if it does not increase operational costs much. Getting students into the buss habit is fine and I am sure it could be done without much trouble. Remember that this is between AC Transit and OUSD and the mayor’s role is very limited.

- How can local road maintenance be improved (including for bus transit operations)?

Ron Dellums has brought us a lot of stimulus monies that will come into play soon. These kinds of priorities are already in some of the funds and can be in some of the others.

- Should any new highway expansions or highway interchange capacity expansions be included, and why?

I am opposed to any spending on more auto infrastructure. Our urgent need is transit and once we get enough transit to get cars off the road, we will have a “nega-watt” effect. We can expand our freeways by reducing the traffic and not much else makes sense right now.

17. Oakland adopted a Transit First policy in 1996. How should it be updated? As Mayor, what would you do to encourage sustainable adoption of walking, bicycling, public transit, and other alternatives to autos?

Let me give a general answer here too, and please look at my short piece on the environment that I have put here below.

I really believe that much of this can be accomplished by changing the WAY we do things we already do and fund. What we need to do is stick to the clear goals. The “complete street” idea of mixed use streets has been used elsewhere with great effect. When I lived in China I got the feeling that they rarely had any other kind of street. Again I go back to my main point. Are we planning and zoning with a clear set of goals in mind or are we doing a lot of half measures, feel good projects and building a laundry list. The public is very skeptical of a lot of these projects because what they see in practice is a white stripe on a dangerous street called a bike lane. In every case I would want to review how effective we are being, what the real cost is and how do we keep the active participation of the community.

- Do you support a transportation mitigation fee on new development, and at what level? What transportation services should this source fund?
- How would you advocate for City staff and officials to set an example by adopting programs such as transit-passes, parking-cash-out and guaranteed-ride-home? What would you do to reduce use of city-owned vehicles and parking privileges?
- How would you fund construction and maintenance of bike lanes and complete streets? Explain your understanding of the concept of “complete streets,” and how this can be used in Oakland to improve transit service, pedestrian access, and community quality of life.
- How can real-time pricing be implemented as a parking management strategy in commercial zones? What should be done to reduce parking in downtown Oakland? What should be done to reduce the approximately 5,000 spaces proposed for the Upper Broadway Redevelopment Project, and how can additional transit and bike access be funded?
- How should dedicated space on additional Oakland streets be allocated for potential bus/light rail transit and/or bike corridors?
- How should transportation planning be implemented within city departments? Do you support establishing a transportation commission?

18. Despite current levels of recycling, Oakland has the same amount of garbage now that it had twenty years ago. What are your goals for waste elimination in Oakland?
- There is some sense that multi-unit buildings may be slow to develop recycling programs because they pay single family garbage rates multiplied by the number of units. Would you be willing to reconstruct rates for multi-unit buildings to be more like commercial accounts (no requirements on minimum payments/levels of service) and less like residential buildings, or consider effective models in other cities? Do you support mandatory multi-family building recycling?
- The garbage franchise will be up for reconsideration in a few years. How do you evaluate Waste Management in that role as Oakland's garbage service provider? Do you support extension of their contract? What aspects of the contract would you like to see improved?
- Currently, food and green scraps are sent by truck to the Central Valley for composting, while EBMUD maintains a local facility that can produce renewable energy from captured methane. As future garbage and recycling contracts are up for reconsideration, do you support sending commercial, and also residential food scraps to EBMUD’s food waste-to-energy digester?

I am for obligatory recycling. That includes the strict regulation of the packaging industry who produce the lion’s share of our garbage. This is a state issue and I think the city should form a pressure alliance with other cities facing the same problems.

19. How would you fund and prioritize maintenance of city parks and urban forestry?

I would go for a lower maintenance required native species approach.
We need a new public / property owners agreement on the care of the trees.
And we need to take a civic center approach to our parks.
More in my statement below.

20. Should Oakland’s sewer fee increase be restructured as fixed rate on all households, or a variable rate, to reflect differing impacts on the sewers and to encourage water conservation?
- Should Oakland take a position opposing the expansion of Pardee Reservior, as the cities of Berkeley and Richmond have?

I think a variable rate is for sewer use is better, but the only concern is not water conservation. There is also a question of WHAT is going into the sewers. Certain businesses should help pay the costs of extra processing.

I have not looked at the Pardee Reservoir issue well enough to take position. That fact that Berkeley and Richmond both oppose it makes me want to listen to their arguments. These are two credible city governments.


Please identify pro-environmental actions you have taken either as a private citizen or public official in your career and any environmental or civic organizations active on environmental matters in which you have been active. Please attach any written environmental campaign material or platform plank.

Most of my life I have been an environmental activist of one kind or another.
In the 1980’s I installed a small scale hyrdo electric plant in rural Nicaragua.
That project also put in charge of watershed management for the district.
General third world development required that I learn about Integrated Pest Management.
From there I became more formally involved, including 5 years at Earth Island.
As a machinist-millwright I have also been involved directly in the industrial processes around food processing, recycling and other forms of alternative energy including wind and fuel cells.

Politically I come from a labor-left background.
My first exposure to a Green Part was in Germany
I have been a member and activist in the Green Party in the USA for many years.


a. Please indicate up to four major issues which your campaign emphasizes.

Community policing with restorative justice.
Support of our schools via multi use and civic center development.
Council reform.
Budget reform.

b. Please provide electronic, telephone, and physical addresses for the campaign.
Attached below

c. Please attach a copy of your official candidate statement, a current list of endorsers, expected endorsements, expected fundraising, and your most recent campaign finance report.

Also below, but note that we are a grass roots campaign. We do not seek big money.
Your endorsement is requested and highly valued and so are our resident supporters.


The Sierra Club can:

1. Endorse.

2. Engage in actions short of endorsement, which can allow a candidate to identify supporters by their Club titles or use Club mailing lists for mailings. The Club may describe the candidates' records in newsletter articles.

3. Oppose.

4. Remain neutral. The Club may describe the candidates' records in newsletter articles.

A few candidates have misrepresented action short of endorsement in their literature or statements to the press as a Sierra Club endorsement. Others, while not endorsed, have quoted selectively from Sierra Club articles to suggest Club support for them or opposition to their opponent. Others, also not endorsed, have advertised their support by Sierra Club members or leaders to give the impression of Club support. To protect the validity and credibility of the Sierra Club endorsement, we ask each candidate seeking our endorsement to sign the following pledge:

I pledge not to misrepresent any Sierra Club support of me nor of any of my opponents; nor to quote the Sierra Club to give any such misimpressions; nor to report a supporter of mine by their Sierra Club affiliation to convey any such misimpression. In other words, I pledge to represent the Sierra Club position honestly and fully, and to seek guidance from the Club on interpretation of this pledge.

Name: Donald L Macleay Office Sought: Oakland Mayor

Signature: Date: Sunday, August 29, 2010

This is my campaign statement for the voter pamphlet:
The Oakland I want is already growing all around us in the many community groups working to keep our schools up, our crime down and our neighborhoods vibrant. Grassroots Oakland volunteers are replacing the failed vicious circle of blame and mercilessness with circles of helping one another and circles of community that include all of us. I want to lead an activist administration that trusts and supports this grassroots Oakland and helps bring the various parts into a citywide partnership. We all need to participate, beyond just voting. I will convene a full review of our budget structure and bring a reformed progressive tax and budget system to the voters. I will make good on the promises of whole community support for our schools, community policing, restorative justice, growth and jobs by choosing the path of being willing to help one another.

Macleay for Mayor 2010 510 866-7488
P.O. Box 20142 Oakland CA 94620
FPPC # 1322980
HOW I propose Oakland deals with environmental issues:
Think Globally
Advocate at the county, state and national level for better environmental policies such as:
• Real regional transit: BART and AC Transit are way under built for the kind of transit we really need.
The regional coordination provided by them and the MTC is also not up to the task.
• Conversion off of fossil fuels. This is the future and Oakland should always say it in public
• Progressive social policies around employment such as job swapping, job site daycare, etc.
• 100% recycling. If it is not recyclable, California should not allow it to be sold.
• Detoxification. We have too many toxics in our homes, in our workplaces and on our farms.
• Watershed management. Before piping more water around the state we need to conserve, protect and expand the amount of reforested lands and wetlands that buffer, clean and add to the available fresh water supply.
• Green Jobs. In the end all jobs can be green jobs as we convert our economy to a sustainable model. During the conversion, which will last most of our lifetimes, new and neglected industrial skills will need to be developed. Tax policies, education policies and overall industrial zoning and planning will all come into play.
Act Locally
• There are many things a city can do, (see other side) and we need to focus what recourses we have on those.

• Avoid spending any city money on small scale symbolic efforts. For one, a lot of these symbolic projects are just a chance for someone to make themselves look ‘green’ without doing anything of substance and two, most of the problems are social, not technical. We have the examples of what can be done; now we need to learn what happens when we really try to do it.

• Seek out large scale partners for large scale projects.
There certainly are projects and experiments we should be willing to spend those redevelopment and federal stimulus dollars on. They need to be BIG to come up the measure of what is needed. For example, if someone wanted to do a full scale trial of fuel cell trucks, we have a port that we should volunteer, but it needs to be someone large such as the Department of Transportation or General Motors. Another example would be to partner with a major player if they would use a significant part of our solar space here in town.

What I propose for city government around the environment:
Enforce Air Pollution laws
• Get relief for the asthma sufferers. The areas with high concentrations of child asthma need to be declared emergency zones needing immediate pollution relief. Consider leading up a class action suit.
• Get stricter standards around the port, airport and the freeways and promote alternatives such as electric trucks.
• Be very proactive around every projects environmental impact study, do not allow more building in highly affected areas such as Oak to Ninth and do not allow more air pollution in residential areas.
Zone for walkable neighborhoods
• Allow and encourage neighborhood stores, pharmacies, restaurants, schools, sports and entertainment.
• Develop the bus/BART connections as safe neighborhood centers, open 24/7 with services.
• Allow and encourage more employment near where people live.
• SAFE bike lanes that run between the parked cars and the sidewalk, not a strip in traffic.
Intelligent home improvement
• Allow, encourage and in certain circumstances require the use of “grey water” systems.
• All home improvement building permits need to be made easier to do and much faster. We should actively support putting in simple things like skylights (the most ancient, effective and lowest cost way to use solar energy), atrium, passive solar, rooftop gardens and building side green houses.
Land Management
• Plant more trees in all areas and take ownership of all the sidewalk trees in town.
• Go back to California native plants for most of our public parks and landscaping.
(New England style lawns should be for ball fields and botanical gardens)
• Encourage privately owned commercial and residential owners also go California Native.
• Put what lands we can back into environmental buffers, such as wetlands, tidal areas and restored creek beds.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Sierra Club Aug 25 Green Oakland Mayoral Forum

Now that the forum has been opened up to all ballot qualified candidates, we plan to attend.
Thanks to everyone who wrote to me and/or made their opinions known.



From: Kent
Received: Thursday, August 19 2010 09:59:46 PM

Dear Candidates & Campaign Managers,

After consideration and listening to community voices, the Sierra Club
have decided to open our "Green Mayoral" forum on August 25th to all
registered candidates for mayor (as of August 16, 2010). Please see
the attached document from the Registrar of Voters listing all
candidates who filed by August 16th, 2010 (starting page 22). There
are 10 registered candidates listed there. If there are other
candidates that have registered (in other words, if our information is
not correct and somebody is missing from the list), and it can be
verified, those candidates will also be invited.

We are going to modify the format of this forum to have fewer
questions so that we can hear from all the candidates. A moderator
will be appointed and we will attempt to stick to a limited time per
speaker and question. The event takes place next Wednesday, August
25th from 5:30 - 7:30 at the East Bay Community Foundation, 353 Frank
Ogawa Plaza, next to City Hall. Please be there no later than 5:15.
Doors open at 5.

Please rsvp with an email to me ( We need your
rsvp so that we can develop a program for the event and get some
biographical information from all the participants. If you could
develop a *brief* statement / bio (no more than 3-4 sentences), we
appreciate it. We will have a very simple program and try to squeeze
some information about each participating candidate on it.

We appreciate your coming and participating in a discussion about
issues concerning the environment, affecting all the people of
Oakland. Please ask your supporters to attend, as well.

We look forward to an informative and enlightening discussion,
hopefully the first of a series on green issues.

Kent Lewandowski
Chair, Northern Alameda County Group
Sierra Club, S.F. Bay Chapter

p.s. I apologize for any bitterness my previous email caused. I am a
volunteer and not skilled at public relations.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Sierra Club decides to exclude Green Party and all non professional politicians from their "Green Oakland" Mayoral Forum

Sierra Club decides to exclude Green Party and all non professional politicians from their "Green Oakland" Mayoral Forum

From: Kent Add to Contacts... To: , , , , , , Subject: Green Oakland Mayoral Forum - Sierra Club Received: Tuesday, August 17 2010 12:41:34 AM Flags Read (+)

Dear Candidate,Thank you for your interest in participating in the "Green Oakland"forum sponsored by the Sierra Club. We made the decision to invite the 3 candidates who are considered by all accounts as the "most viable" in the race. The decision which candidates are considered"viable" has to do with a number of factors, which includes the elected office they may have held in the past (if any), their ability to raise money for the campaign, and the level of organization of their campaign.We have only 90 minutes of time to discuss our issues, and hope to include members of the community in the discussion. Thus there simply isn't enough time to incorporate all 10 or more mayoral candidates in this forum.We understand your disappointment, but felt this was the best decision in the interest of having a productive and informative event.

Sincerely,Kent Lewandowski,
volunteer Chairperson
Northern Alameda County Group
Sierra Club, San Francisco Bay Chapter