Tag Archives | Future Debt

East Bay Express says Vote NO on Alameda County Measure A1!

Help Save Knowland Park!

Vote NO on Alameda County Measure A1


Measure A1 is an irrevocable 25 year tax that:

Could be used to fund $72 million massive zoo expansion into public park land in Knowland Park (Oakland’s largest wildland park)

  • Would allow taxpayer funds to be used broadly, even to build a 34,000 square foot restaurant, gift shop, visitor center and office complex.
  • Paves over and destroys ecologically rich wildlife and native plant habitat.
  • Displaces a rare plant community used by many species of native wildlife, including threatened Alameda whipsnake.

Gives taxing authority to a private organization with no publicly elected representatives.

  • Allows privately elected Zoo Board to tax residents without being required to follow state public open records laws. A 25-year tax for privately-run operation, with no true public accountability, is unacceptable.

Vote No! – The Zoo already gets public funds from multiple sources – other needs are much higher priority.

  • Zoo currently gets millions of dollars in public funding, including Oakland city funds, hotel taxes, East Bay Regional Park District funds, other bonds, and a multimillion-dollar State Parks grant.
  • Schools, libraries, and other public programs should take priority in tax-based funding.

Measure A1 is Opposed by:

  • East Bay Chapter of the California Native Plant Society
  • Friends of Knowland Park
  • Alameda Creek Alliance
  • California Native Grasslands Association
  • Resource Renewal Institute
  • and many other individuals and organizations that care about protecting our precious parklands.

Click here to read Media Coverage of Measure A1.

The effort to save Knowland Park: www.saveknowland.org
Measure A1 and how you can help: www.noonmeasurea1.com
Full text of Measure A1:  http://www.acgov.org/rov/documents/2012-11-06MeasureA1.pdf

Click here for an Analysis of Measure A1.

Paid for by No on A1 to Save Knowland Park, PAC #1351843. Sponsored by East Bay Chapter, California Native Plant Society

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Who Knew? Zoo Board Members Are Knowland Park Supporters!

A warm welcome to our Zoo Board Member supporters! As many of you know, we have had such a flurry of people joining us that we have hardly had time to do more than keep adding the email addresses to our database. But recently, going through the list in preparation for our campaign, we discovered that zoo Board President Steve Kane and Board Member B. Reid Settlemier, among others, had signed up as Friends of Knowland Park supporters! Mr. Settlemier had signed up with an email address that didn’t happen to include his last name, but an automatic vacation message let us know who he was. What a great development! Maybe this indicates a change of heart? Fortunately, there is room for ALL the members of the zoo board and its foundation board to join up—room even for the zoo CEO, Dr. Joel Parrott, to sign on and help save the Park–because we have always run a completely transparent campaign.

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Getting the public to pay for big Zoo Development in Knowland Park – Measure G becomes Measure G(otcha)

Text of Measure G from the League of Women Voters website: http://www.smartvoter.org/2002/03/05/ca/alm/meas/G/

If you’ve been following the big Oakland Zoo development proposed for the highlands of Knowland Park, then you’ve heard that one of the problems is the sheer cost of it.

But that’s okay, some say, because it will “pump millions into the economy” as Bay Area media outlets reported last summer. However, a closer look suggests that a respectable segment of the millions needed to build the Zoo’s theme park will be pumped directly from the front and back pockets of East Bay residents (See blog “It’s Your Zoo – You’re Paying (and Paying and Paying) for It – May 11, 2012).

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It’s Your Zoo – You’re Paying (and Paying and Paying) for It

Money - the Big Problem with Oakland City Government and the Oakland Zoo

It comes as no surprise that the Oakland Zoo has announced that it will seek yet another source of public funding (up to $5 million a year), this time from Alameda County residents. The zoo has been soliciting support for the county-wide tax measure on its website page, “It’s Your Zoo.” The zoo already receives money from Alameda and Contra Costa residents through the East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) which taps residents for a portion of their parcel taxes through its special tax district (check your property tax bill and you’ll see it listed).

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Oakland debt will be raised with zoo’s new multi-million dollar aerial gondola

The Oakland Zoo expansion plan being pursued by zoo management with the approval of the Oakland City Council includes a big and expensive aerial gondola.

You might ask, with the new City Administrator, Deanna Santana, noting in her December budget letter that the City doesn’t have money to replace aging fire pump and ladder trucks, or pay off the debt from past City projects, or keep the City infrastructure safe,…why would Oakland choose to go further into debt to help buy and maintain the expensive cars, wires, power equipment, and massive columns for a big new zoo gondola.

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