March 16, 2013
Alameda ahead of the curve, as always!
From the NYT
Across the country, cities are showing a renewed interest in taking over the electricity business from private utilities, reflecting intensifying concerns about climate change, responses to power disruptions and a desire to pump more renewable energy into the grid. Boulder, Colo., for instance, could take an important step toward creating its own municipal utility, among the nation’s first in years, as soon as next month.
And while Boulder’s level of activism may be unusual, given its liberal leanings and deep-seated concerns over climate change and the environment, the desire to take control of the electricity business is not. Officials and advocates in Minneapolis and Santa Fe, N.M., are considering splitting from their private utilities, while lawmakers in Massachusetts are trying to make it easier for towns and counties to make the break
September 10, 2012
I saw an ad in the recent Alameda Magazine for The Alameda Store. Here’s your chance to buy Alameda branded items.
July 6, 2012
Whoa … what a concept! A lifeguard actually choosing to save somebody rather than stand around and watch.
“Someone was in danger,” explained Mr. Lopez, 21, who lives in Davie, in Broward County, and started his lifeguard job four months ago. “I wasn’t going to choose my job over someone in danger. My job is to help people in distress. It was a moronic rule in my opinion that they set up. I understand the liability issues, but. …”
This 21-year old lifeguard could teach a thing or two to AFD/APD.
June 29, 2012
I know every little bit is supposed to add up … but the gap is simply too big for a bandaid to fix.
Contracts with the city’s nonsafety unions are expected to produce $873,000 in pension and benefit savings over the lives of those contracts, while increased pension contributions from police and firefighters are expected to save the city $578,400 over three years.
Annual financial reports released by the city show that Alameda’s unfunded pension liabilities more than doubled between 2002 and 2008, from $36.3 million to a little over $74 million. The city’s most recent consolidated annual financial report shows the city with nearly $95 million in unfunded pension liabilities in 2010.
And there’s this kicker:
Alameda has 558 current employees enrolled in its two retirement plans and 763 receiving retirement benefits, Assistant City Manager Lisa Goldman said, or 0.73 active employees paying into the system for every retiree taking benefits.
June 28, 2012
Title says it all … something to watch out for.
Surprised local taxpayers from Stockton, Calif., to Scranton, Pa., are finding themselves obligated for parking garages, hockey arenas and other enterprises that can no longer pay their debts. Officials have signed them up unknowingly to backstop the bonds of independent authorities, the special bodies of government that run projects like toll roads and power plants. The practice, meant to save governments money, has been gaining popularity without attracting much notice, and is creating problems for a small but growing number of cities.
June 11, 2012
Can’t say I’m disappointed to see this go down in flames. If there was anything that captured the pandering attitude of the Council, this is the best example. I’m surprised they didn’t add a new kitchen sink to the long list of projects that were being considered for funding.
Compare this to what the San Jose and San Diego city councils have achieved:
Residents of San Diego and San Jose voted overwhelmingly to cut the pension benefits they give city workers. And they did so in a way governments traditionally avoid: moving to cut not just the benefits of future hires, but also those of current city workers, whose pensions generally have much stronger legal protections than those of private-sector workers.
Is it too much to ask the Council to address critical issues such as pension benefits as a priority?
May 29, 2012
I saw one of these pedicabs on Park St very recently and been wanting to look it up. Very cool, especially if you have folks visiting.
Alameda Pedicab, locally owned and operated, brings the “pedicab experience” to Silicon Valley, the San Francisco peninsula, the South Bay and East Bay, and in particular to the quaint alleys, bustling downtown area, Victorian neighborhoods and South Shore of Alameda, as well as to the aircraft carrier “Hornet”, Mariner Square Drive and Ferry Terminal areas (per request).