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It's budget season. On May 1st, Mayor Libby Schaaf released her FY 2019-21 Proposed Policy Budget after gathering input from the public and reviewing each Councilmembers' budget priorities. Through May, Councilmembers will engage community members to collect and respond to feedback and work towards budget approval by June 30th.
The city budget provides us with a real, systemic opportunity to prioritize Oaklanders' needs - to put resources towards solving problems and strengthening supports.
The Mayor's proposed budget includes important service increases to: fire prevention & emergency services, and street paving & transportation. It also includes reductions to services - freezing vacant positions in parks maintenance, despite our growing need.
My first priority is housing as a human right, and the city's own public budget survey revealed homelessness and housing are overwhelmingly the top issues residents want to prioritize. I'd like us to invest more in these areas. My other top priorities include: community safety, economic development, our parks, and our children and students.
Please join my Thursday, May 16th District 2 Budget Forum to help shape how Oakland spends its resources and serves residents.
This Tuesday, May 7th at 4pm, you can also join a special meeting of the City Council to learn more about the Mayor's proposed budget. Then at our regular City Council meeting at 5:30pm, our full agenda includes an important part of the budget - the proposed 3-year Paving Plan, which incorporates equity, street conditions, and safety to prioritize repaving.
The plan aims to deliver $100M in paving construction, tripling Oakland's average annual spending, and prioritize $75M on 70 miles of local streets. View the plan, including an online map of streets to be paved: here. Council will also consider a resolution to dedicate $7M in state funding towards completing 311 community service requests for priority 1 and 2 pothole and concrete repair submitted to 311/SeeClickFix. In addition, Council already approved $3.25M towards prioritizing street resurfacing this year. View information, including a list of streets: here.
As always, please share your feedback on this newsletter, as well as future opportunities you'd like to share with our neighbors.
With Oakland Love,
Nikki Fortunato Bas
#PeoplePoweredGovernment: Mark your calendars for key Council meetings and policy efforts.
(1) Strengthening Rules on Police Use of Force:
Celebrating the dreams and contributions of Oakland entrepreneurs this Small Business Week, May 5 - 11!
Oakland Family Legacy Business Awards. On Monday, May 6, the City of Oakland will celebrate family-owned legacy businesses at a reception at City Hall at 4:30 p.m. followed by an awards ceremony at 5 p.m. in Council Chambers.
District 2's Lake Merritt Optometry and La Estrellita will receive a plaque from Mayor Schaaf. Combined, the five businesses being honored have more than 325 years of business experience serving our community!
Lake Merritt Optometry is a 3rd generation family-owned small business currently run by Dr. Serene Ngin. Dr. Raymond Eng opened the business in Chinatown in the 1930s. He was also the first Chinese American elected to Oakland's City Council. In 1969, he moved the business to 3rd Ave where they are celebrating their 50th anniversary. Generations of Oakland families have had their eyes checked here and today they are the City of Oakland’s vendor for safety glasses.
We are proud to honor Arizmendi Bakery on Lakeshore Avenue, which opened in 1997, the same year I moved to the neighborhood.
Arizmendi is modeled after the successful worker-owned Cheeseboard in Berkeley and is now one of six Arizmendi bakeries in the Bay Area. The small business recruits its worker-owners from underserved Oakland communities and focuses on providing healthy food as well as technical, educational, and organizational support to member cooperatives throughout the Bay.
Community Resources + Opportunities
Report issues or services needed using OAK 311. 311 is an easy-to-remember telephone number that connects you with highly trained City of Oakland Call Center representatives ready to help you with requests for non-emergency City services and information. You can also report issues online or on the OAK 311 mobile phone app.
Free Workshops, Events for Small Business Week May 5-11. Entrepreneurs and small business owners may choose from networking events, informative workshops and insightful panels in Downtown, East Oakland, Fruitvale and West Oakland. Topics will include social media, tech tools, access to capital, cyber security, business models, women mentoring women, business operations and more.
Fantastic Negrito Debuts Free Curated Street Performance Series. Two-time Grammy Award Winner and Oakland's own Fantastic Negrito launched AMP (Arts, Music, Performance) Oakland, a curated busker/street performance series throughout Downtown Oakland from May until October, organized by Oakland Central. This project aims to further the vibrancy of Downtown Oakland and strengthen the foundation of our local cultural arts economy by directly supporting local artists and performers.
Neighborhood Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) Meetings. Get involved with your local NCPC or Neighborhood Council to help make our communities safe and connected.
Bella Vista NCPC
San Antonio NCPC
Cleveland Heights / Beat 15X recently voted to formally establish a Neighborhood Council at its first well-attended meeting at FM Smith Rec Center. We will share information about upcoming meetings when it becomes available.
Ride with Councilmember Bas on 2019 Bike to Work Day! On Thursday, May 9, meet Nikki, School Board Member Aimee Eng, and Walk Oakland Bike Oakland (WOBO) at Grand Lake Ace Hardware at 7:15 a.m. and bike to City Hall where a pancake breakfast celebration and fun activities await you. Sign up to volunteer here.
Alameda County Launches Home Down Payment Assistance Program. The County Board of Supervisors' AC Boost program is a county-wide down payment assistance loan program funded by the county’s 2016 Measure A1 Housing Bond. The program offers shared equity loans of up to $150,000 to first-time homebuyers who live, work, or have been displaced from Alameda County. Educators (including all public school employees) may have double the chance to access AC Boost funds.
19th Annual Malcolm X Jazz and Arts Festival. On Saturday, May 18 from 11 a.m - 7 p.m., join Eastside Arts Alliance at San Antonio Park for a full day featuring local musicians, poets, dancers, artists, vendors, and community.
East Bay Housing Organizations (EBHO) 35th Anniversary Affordable Housing Week Kick-Off. Join EBHO for an evening of fun, food, music, and a celebration of the community's collective work for affordable homes.
Thursday, May 9th, 2019
See the full schedule for Affordable Housing Week May 9-19 here.
Free Walking Tours of Downtown Oakland. Through October, the City's Cultural Affairs Division is hosting 90-minute free walking tours every Wednesday and Saturday. They're a great way for residents, visitors and newcomers to get to know Oakland's history, culture, landmarks, churches, and today's happenings. The tours focus on Old Oakland, City Center, Uptown to the Lake, Preservation Park, Chinatown, Jack London Waterfront, churches and temples, and Oakland's African American landmarks and leaders.
Town Camp. Registration is open for Oakland Parks, Recreation, and Youth Development's (OPRYD) annual Town Camp, which offers youth an opportunity to learn leadership skills and develop self-confidence in a safe and inclusive environment. Each week of camp has an exciting theme including activities such as swimming, field trips, crafts, games, and cooking projects.
Oakland Feather River Art Camp. This is a family-friendly art camp (directed by District 2 neighbors) whose instructors are mostly East Bay artists, specialists in their disciplines. It takes place from June 9-16 this summer.
Friends of Lincoln Square Park Project. Lincoln Recreation Center is the most utilized recreation facility and community gathering spot in all of Oakland, drawing residents from throughout Alameda County over generations. It serves 1,500 children and offers a huge array of community programming seven days a week from early morning Tai Chi to evening ballroom classes. The renovation and expansion project is a priority budget item for my office - I hope you'll learn more and consider helping this facility grow to continue to meet the needs of Oaklanders.
FM Smith Recreation Center Basketball Court Project. Project Backboard is collaborating with local artist Alicia McCarthy to design the graphic for the rec center's basketball court resurfacing project. Provide your input on the graphic design concepts at the following community engagement meetings:
Wednesday May 8, 2019
Tuesday May 21, 2019
The Town Talks Community. Join the Department of Race & Equity for a conversation with the department's director Darlene Flynn and Robin DiAngelo, author of White Fragility. Community members will learn about and discuss the way race shapes the lives of White people and explore the experiences, challenges, and skills required of people of color who navigate a white-dominant society daily. Individuals interested in purchasing the book are encouraged to purchase it from Marcus Book store.
Monday, May 6, 2019
510 Day 2019. Urban Peace Movement, Communities United for Restorative Youth Justice (CURYJ), AYPAL, and The East Oakland Collective invite you to Lake Merritt for 510 Day on Friday, May 10th from 4 - 8 p.m to celebrate the unique culture of Oakland and the East Bay. #WeStillHere
Safe Oakland Summit. This Summit on June 8th at the Oakland Museum of California is designed by and intended for residents impacted by violence. The gathering will focus on eradicating gun violence, ending the commercial sexual exploitation of youth, ending domestic partner violence, and enhancing family support services.
Funding Opportunities for Arts & Culture Projects. The City's 2019-20 Cultural Funding Program grants application deadline is Monday, May 15. In addition, the Kenneth Rainin Foundation's Open Spaces Program is inviting letters of inquiry until May 31 for grants of $50-200K for nonprofits to partner with artists to create temporary, place-based public art projects in San Francisco and Oakland.
ACCELA Citizen Tool / Online Permitting Center. The City's new ACCELA database allows Oakland's fire, building, and planning departments to track, record and view property inspections in real time. This technology is easily accessible to the public, allowing residents to search by record or parcel number to record pictures and other relevant information related to inspections and compliance.
23rd Ave Street Cleanup. Join the 23rd Avenue Beautification Group (23ABG) for its monthly cleanup on Saturday, May 25th from 9-11 a.m. Meet at 2209 23rd Avenue. Tools, gloves, and safety vests will be provided.
Expanded Oakland Public Library Hours. Thanks to the passage of Measure D, all library locations increased their hours since April 1 and will now be open on Mondays. Previously, only three branches were open Mondays. In addition, the Main Library and 81st Ave Branch are open 7 days a week with full days on Saturday and Sunday.
BBQ Becky One Year Anniversary Event. On Sunday, May 12, 11:00 a.m. Kenzie Smith and community organizers are commemorating the one-year anniversary of the 'Barbeque Becky' incident with a free, family-friendly BBQ at Lake Merritt. The incident brought national attention to the racial profiling of Black Americans. The organizers are fundraising to ensure the event is free and accessible to all.
Oakland Veg Fest. Organized by the Factory Farming Awareness Coalition (FFAC), the festival returns for its fifth year on Saturday, May 18 from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m at the Lake Merritt Amphitheater. It is free and open to the public and will feature food, vendors, speakers, a 'cutest dog' contest, and kids area.
Queer California: Untold Stories Exhibit. Through August 11, head to the Oakland Museum of California to visit this incredible new exhibit on non-mainstream stories and experiences of queerness. It focuses on transgender communities, people of color, women, and others who have often been left out of history.
Around the Neighborhood
Sharing the City's proclamation declaring the month of May to be Older Americans Month at the Human Services Department's kickoff event on May 1st. We learned about the resources, supports, and community organizations working to make Oakland friendly for seniors and people with disabilities. Later, we joined the community to celebrate May Day and call for worker and immigrant rights.
¡Feliz Cinco de Mayo! I had a blast at the Aztec Run supporting the Spanish Speaking Citizens' Foundation. Great to see Councilmember Noel Gallo and School Board member Rosie Torres. The organizers said I was the first Oakland City Councilmember to run and finish the race! Maybe next year I'll win a medal, though it was fun to award medals to the girls who finished in record time.
Meeting with residents and small businesses in Chinatown during my last monthly office hours and engaging in a retail walk to learn about merchants' hopes, challenges, and histories.
It was a real honor to meet these firefighters from Station 12 in Chinatown who serve the surrounding area. I look forward to working together to make sure we keep our city and residents safe and healthy.
I met so many wonderful people at Lincoln Elementary's carnival celebration, including the local Boy Scouts Troop.
Celebrating the girls basketball teams of Oakland High and Oakland Tech for making herstory and winning the state championship titles -- you go, ladies!
What a lovely day celebrating the 63rd Annual Easter Pancake Community Breakfast with the Wa Sung Community Service Club, community organizations and hundreds of neighbors.
Joining families and neighbors in Chinatown with Asian Health Services for the 25th annual Oakland Earth Day clean up efforts.
As part of the City's relationship with Oakland Coliseum, Councilmembers receive tickets to sporting events and concerts. We are grateful for the opportunity to honor community members with these tickets.
Join us in recognizing Griffen Castillo and Coach John Beam for their work supporting Oakland.
Griffen is a leader with All City Council Student Union Governing Board with Oakland Unified School District. He says, "All of the work that I do is done to support my fellow students. In Restorative Justice, I mediate conflicts between my peers and help them learn how to deal with struggles in their life and learn from them. In All City Council, I work as the Vice President to represent other students and make sure that their voices are heard by inviting them to board meetings."
Coach Beam is Director of Athletics at Laney College, whose football team recently earned the title of number one junior college football team in the country for the 2018-19 season! Coach Beam's motto is "Laney Built--Oakland Proud." With 39 years of coaching and 15 of them at Laney, he has made lasting, positive impacts on the lives of many young people in Oakland. In 2018 he was voted the California Community College Athletic Association's Coach of the Year. He previously won state high school coach of the year and national regional coach of the year awards as head coach at Skyline High School.
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Recently, Eastlake resident Dontae Moore was the victim of a hate crime. His car was spray-painted with the N word in his driveway. This racist attack is an attack on our entire community. As a single parent father and new employee with the city's Parks and Recreation department, Dontae had to walk to work following the incident and find other ways to send his son to school.
Thank you, Oakland, for helping Dontae and showing that hate and anti-Blackness have no place in our community or anywhere. Even as Trump invites white nationalism and violence out of the shadows, we know love and light have greater power.
His neighbor Lanese Martin, who is also Co-Founder of The Hood Incubator, set up a fundraiser to help Dontae with the costs of restoring his car. In less than 72 hours, Oaklanders and friends across the country raised more than double the goal of $1,700 for Dontae -- he has since gotten his car fixed. Dontae: your positivity through this experience inspires all of us. We hope you feel the strength and love of Oakland and the Bay Area the way you've shown yours.
In the News
Connect with Team D2!
D2 Office: (510) 238-7002
Pamela Drake, Community Liaison