The HOMES Front  newsletterNovember, 2009

Election DayElection Date Set

At its November 3, 2009 City Council meeting, the Council selected February 2, 2010 as the election date for the Revitalize Alameda Point initiative.

“We’re thrilled that the initiative will be going before the voters,” said HOMES’ Helen Sause. “The decision as to the future of Alameda Point will be up to the citizens of Alameda, not a developer and not city government,” continued Sause. “We urge all Alamedans to focus on the facts, educate themselves and make an informed vote on February 2nd.

HOMES urges a yes vote on the initiative. “It has taken fifteen years since the Base was decommissioned to get to the point of having a viable plan,” said Sause. “This plan meets the community goals of preserving the tradition and character of Alameda, job creation, economic development, providing usable open space, and creating an environmentally sustainable development.”

The February 2, 2010 date will require the City to pay for a special election at a cost of $235,000 to $325,000. The selected election date also cuts short the time for citizen evaluation and study. Absentee ballots will arrive in mail boxes by January 4, 2010. HOMES opposed this expenditure and shortening of time due to its precluding time for education and further negotiations between the Developer and City. Here's the HOMES letter that was sent to the mayor and councilmembers.

HOMES is Revving It Up!

The February 2, 2010 election date the council set does not provide much time for voters to learn all the facts about the initiative. Ballot arguments are due November 16, 2009. In spite of the Council’s claim on October 20th to provide public disclosure as to continuing negotiations on fiscal issues between the City and SunCal, the Council selected the earliest possible election date, largely precluding further good faith negotiations and public discourse. Given the major holidays between now and February, there is even less time for the public to focus on the issues.

To address this timing, HOMES will attempt to double our newsletter releases, publishing two per month. There is certain enough to discuss, from the elements of the specific plan to recently revealed fiscal concerns by the Chamber, Mayor and Councilmember Matarrese. Here we go …

The Alameda Point Specific Plan

Alameda Point

Just what all is in this Plan and how does it fulfill the community goals? The Alamedans for Alameda Point Revitalization blog offered an article entitled Complex and Creative Plan for Alameda that describes some of the key elements of the Plan and shows you where you can learn more about them.

HOMES encourages our readers to check it out and learn more about just what sort of elements make up this plan and how they can benefit Alameda, now and in the future.

What If?

What if the voters do not pass the Revitalize Alameda Point initiative on February 2nd. What then? Another 10 - 15 years in keeping with the timing of opening a new library and theatre (which took 30 years and 25 years, respectively)?

At the October 22nd Chamber of Commerce breakfast, the City’s Interim City Manage (ICM), Ann Marie Gallant, revealed that the City has a “contingency plan” should the initiative fail, which is quite interesting given the City’s current efforts to torpedo the initiative while at the same time claiming to continue “good faith” negotiations with SunCal.

In letters dated October 26th, HOMES asked the ICM and SunCal’s project manager, Pat Keliher, what their plans were should the initiative not pass. We will publish those responses in our next newsletter.

house2 (1K)HOMES Needs Your Help

Just a few short years ago, people said we would never be able to talk about the many possibilities now present for the future of Alameda Point, that the backdrop of Measure A would prevent the community from even being able to consider an environmentally sustainable, walkable, transit-oriented development. But we are! And HOMES has been at the forefront of promoting this open, inclusive and often exciting discussion.

Our expenses are minimal, but there are costs to maintain a web site and produce our newsletters and other materials. Please help us keep this discussion moving forward. We rely solely on the donations of individuals for support.

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HOMES 816 Grand St. Alameda, CA 94501

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