Monday’s Daily Briefing: Artists Displaced Despite Schaaf’s Promise; Alameda Landlords Launch Anti-Just Cause Petition
Plus, UC regents sue FEMA over its decision to rescind hills tree-thinning grant.
Stories you shouldn’t miss for June 19, 2017:
1. Artists throughout Oakland are being evicted from warehouse live-work spaces despite promises by Mayor Libby Schaaf to avoid a building inspection crackdown, reports Erin Baldassari of the East Bay Times$. Oakland inspectors have been issuing defacto eviction notices on artists’ warehouses even though Schaaf vowed that the city would work cooperatively with landlords to bring their buildings up to code following the deadly Ghost Ship warehouse fire last December.
2. Alameda landlords have launched a referendum drive that seeks to overturn the city’s new just cause eviction ordinance, claiming that the new law would make it “nearly impossible for a landlord to evict drug dealers [and] prostitutes,” reports Brian Krans of the East Bay Express. Renters’ groups contend that the landlords’ petition drive is highly misleading and the new law is designed merely to protect tenants from being evicted from their homes for no reason.
3. The UC Board of Regents has sued FEMA over the federal agency’s decision last fall to rescind a $3.5 million grant that was to be used for tree-thinning in the fire prone East Bay hills, reports Audrey McNamara of the Daily Californian. FEMA pulled the grant as part of a legal settlement with some hills residents who didn’t want UC Berkeley and the city of Oakland to cut down thousands of eucalyptus trees.
4. The Bay Area set numerous heat records on Sunday, with temperatures reaching a record 97 degrees in Oakland and 88 in San Francisco, the Bay Area News Group$ reports. The extreme heat also caused several large power outages in the region.
5. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf’s approval rating remains high—58—percent, although only 44 percent of city residents said they plan to vote to reelect her next year, the San Francisco Chronicle$ reports, citing a new David Binder poll. “Younger voters, African Americans, renters, and newer voters are more likely to want to replace Schaaf,” Binder said.
6. The Alameda Planning Board approved a proposal for up to 700 new homes on the estuary, reports Peter Hegarty of the East Bay Times$. The large housing project, which will include single-family homes and multi-family units, is to be located behind the Target store at the Alameda Landing shopping center. The city council is expected to vote on the project in July.
7. Contra Costa County Chief Deputy District Attorney Doug McMaster has taken over as the defacto county DA following the resignation and criminal conviction of DA Mark Peterson, reports Nate Gartrell of the East Bay Times$. Peterson pled guilty to one count of felony perjury for illegally using campaign funds for personal gain.
8. And ex-Alameda Councilmember Tony Daysog plans to run for the council again next year, while East Bay MUD board member Andy Katz plans to run for state Assembly, reports Steven Tavares of the East Bay Citizen.
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