Thursday, April 22, 2010

Reed's Rant: Like Wow, Ok

These are very tense times for the San Leandro City Council. It might be difficult to see by the slight sneers and pointed, but passive aggressive remarks, if you only watch this group in action. The atmosphere in Hayward is vastly different, yet they still have their disagreements. The difference? Hayward doesn't have a councilmember running against a sitting mayor and San Leandro does.

The council is now clearly split between Mayor Tony Santos and Vice Mayor Joyce Starosciak and the difference of opinion between councilmembers is spilling over into the city's business whether it's Ranked Choice Voting, AC Transit's Bus Rapid Transit proposal or contentious discourse between members and the mayor.

This fighting is apparently too much for one councilwoman. Ursula Reed ended Monday's meeting with a message for the council: "stop the fighting," or, "can't we all just get along?" or, "Don't criticize me, I'm just a volunteer," or, "It's the fault of those pesky blogger(s)!" For all we know, her speech was about all of the above? Read it here:

It was interesting because you're sitting in a room campaigning and talking about political things, it seems to me whenever there is an election season, it brings out the best and sometimes the worst in people. From a volunteer standpoint, being a volunteer pretty much all my life, I feel like working as a city council member is a public service. It's not necessarily a place where we get all kind of money and get all kind of recognition. I think that in the public service of being a city council member we also get darts thrown at us a lot and get talked about and peeled apart. We put ourselves out there just for that but because we do that we are here to serve the community and the public. I guess, I'm a little unnerved right now. I've been reading blogs and things that are very disturbing. Just the communication that is going back and forth and it's only April. The election is in November. I'm feeling like, wow, ok, this is quite early for all of this to be happening. My hope is that throught all of this that we focus on public service to the community and try to stay focus throughout this election year.
Immediately after Reed's rant, Santos said, "That is an excellent comment" and detailed a late evening phone call he received last week in which the caller described critical words directed at the mayor. "There is no reason for that type of thing occurring," said Santos. "We may have disagreements from time to time, but that is what the democratic process is all about."

The funny thing about the speech and Santos' comments is Reed was likely criticizing the mayor's comments in The Citizen, but Santos apparently did not make the connection and then quickly ran with the message to criticize the person who had made comments about Santos. That person, incidentally, was sitting in the audience watching the entire spectacle.
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You describe what Reed said as a rant, but it sure doesn't sound like a rant.

Perhaps she was referring to Santos' comment: "Forgot to mention, both chiefs [former police chiefs Maginnis and Kitchen] have skeletons in the closet that maybe only I know about. to protect them, I will keep what I know to myself."

If so, then she was absolutely correct. The Mayor should not be saying such things.

i heard she was upset about the racist and homophobic comments on this site.

maybe you should have asked her

Politics isn't about playing nice. I don't even know what she's talking about either and the valley girl language doesn't help. It sounds like a bunch a people who only hear nice things said to them are finally understanding a lot of people are very unhappy and its funny that they can't handle it


If she doesn't like the comments here she shouldn't read them. Maybe she should think about whether those are the beliefs of her constituents. You can't hide your head in the sand and think the world is such a happy place. Ursula Reed and whoever she's speaking for should join the Tea Party and kick Tavares off the internet because they don't like free speech.

Tony's comments about knowing the "skeletons in the closet" of the police chiefs is unnerving, and improper for a mayor to say. I'd hate for him to compromise San Leandro's public safety for political reasons, if he hasn't done so already. It makes me wonder if he knows about "skeletons in the closet" of officials of the Alameda County Voting Registrar--and has been able to win elections by blackmail.

I don't recall anyone mentioning her on this site? Perhaps she is insecure and wanted something said about her. Well, she got her wish.

It sounds like both Reed and Santos don't believe in democracy and think constituents should only be allowed to contact them to praise them or agree with them.

I would like to invite both Reed and Santos to read the US Constitution and the Federalist Papers so they can better understand how our US system of democracy works. I would also like to invite them to start listening to their constituents in San Leandro.

Frank Lynn

She's looking for attention. It's me me me me me me me me me me me MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

I have never heard of this lady before today.

Well, we have Tavares fawning over Nadia in that low cut dress. Perhaps if she showed up dressed like that an Tavares took notice she wouldn't be complaining.

I agree with some of the other comments. Are we suppose to thank her for "volunteering" for the city council so if she doesn't do a good job that will be ok because she's trying very darn best? That's not how it works. Charlie Gilcrist could have taken her seat and worked far more harder than almost all of the council combined aside from Prola.

I think Reed's speech is bs and thank you Steven for posting it. Since we can't afford to broadcast a simple council meeting at least someone is watching for them to say dumb things.


Prola works hard??? For who? More largess for City Workers? All he is is just some lazy government worker hack.

What's racist about calling Obama out for being an undocumented worker? bahahhahahahaha I see that bum wants to legalize all those illegal aliens so they can flood the ballot box in November and 2012 when that Monster runs for re-election.

Manuel, you might not like his political views, I don't agree woh of them either, especially what you're talking about. I think he puts in the effort way more most of them. Look at Bill Stephens. He doesn't hide the fact that he doesn't even participate. That's a story that should be written about. He's getting paid to just be there and sometimes he doesn't have the decency sit up straight.

Joe Silva

Most people in his district refer to Bill as "Sleepy Stephens."

The fact is most council workers are either working for unions, or developers--and for themselves--there's a generous stipend, computer and gym membership, and travel allowance they don't need--especially when having to layoff cops.

And then there's Michael Gregory who's not sure whom to suck up to yet to further his political career--but he already has Sentinel endorsement, so it's clear he's being told what to do and how high to jump.

Ursula might be the only one of this lot of losers who cares about San Leandro public schools--because I think she has a child in them. Every other council member is working dilligently to further destroy San Leandro's already failing public school system.

It would be nice to see a full turnover in City Council.

Frank Lynn

Bill Stephens and Orval Badger were two dolts placed on there by Maltester to take up space. Nothing more, nothing less. Just show up and vote. But both of them fell/fall asleep anyway. What a joke.

The answer to what ails the council is found on Starosiaks facebook page. She is taking credit for anything the full council did.

From her facebook.

Improved the City's finances from $3M structural deficit to a full 20% reserve
* Returned 8 sworn Police Officers positions to the SL Police Force
* Added 3 Compliance Officers for Community Preservation
* Re-opened the Main Library on Sunday
* Restored the Cherry Festival
* Opened the Manor Branch Library on budget with additional staff
* Opened the San Leandro Family Aquatic Center on budget with additional staff
* Revitalized the Homeowners Association in Washington Manor
* Brought in $300,000 per year from contracts
* Found money in the Fire Contract to purchase 2 new fire trucks
* Saved the Senior Flex Shuttle from a 40% cut in hours
* Found a way to provide the San Leandro Schools with free garbage service

Since she feels she did all that without input from anyone else who has served we only need her, therfore saving the other 6 salaries.

Helps the budget and people would only have one person to rant about saving us all time reading blog sites.

Someone sure has an inflated view of their importance!

She may have an engineering degree but she totally lacks substance and common sense.

And by herself, Joyce spent San Leandro into millions of debt. I'll give her credit for that, because I'm not sure if Tony Santos knows how to do simple math, unless he has an abacus; or Charles Gilcrest and a calculator with him.

By the way, I've since learned that Ursula Reed's child attends private school; meaning all current members of council with children in public school today have put their kids in private school. And elderly Santos' son admitted on this blog that he moved to Alameda because of San Leandro's poor performing schools.

Frank Lynn

These public people want these low-income people coming into San Leandro for votes, plain and simple, ergo they don't want their kids in the schools that these low-income folks populate.

If someone wants to send their kid to private school that's their right, sometimes there is something the private school may offer that the public school doesn't.
But if you are running for public office and using school board experience on your resume yet you send your own kids to private school then don't try to say you had a successful school board run.

Exactly. Also, it's no secret the city council has willfully tried to destroy San Leandro's public schools. During the San Leandro Crossings debacle; the school district came right out against the project citing that San Leandro's dilapidated, old public schools were bursting at the seems with no funds to build new ones. Some schools have to have 3 lunch periods because there's not enough cafeterias. Council didn't address issues and just plain didn't care about impact to overcrowded schools. Just like the council can find $500K to give to a private organization - Davis Street Resource Center; yet must cut the paltry $100K for school crossing guards - in a town where most all elementary schools require small children to cross dangerous arterials.

I think council members with extremly limited intellect (which is prettymuch all of them) are just smart enough to realize--if San Leandro had better public education, and eventually a higher percentage of college graduates--San Leandreans would be smart enough to vote against corrupt incompetents. But for now, the town's ignorance gets votes; so council members are threatened by a strong public education system, and diligently working to destroy San Leandro's public schools.

Frank Lynn

Its not the city's fault that the school district sold Cleveland Elementary and Pacific High school and has nothing to show for it.
If Pacific was still available the district would not have to build a seperate 9th grade campus.
Plus the city council at one point in the early 90's(not sure of exact period) offered to fix up land behind Wilson, Muir and next to Cherry Grove park into sports fields but scholl board turned the offer down because they felt it would affect the school boards feifdom, now they want us to pay for a bond to update sports fields.
The San Leandro School Board has been inept for years

Cleveland was sold to Citation Homes, (Maltester influence) and I believe that the developer of Marina Square had some contact with Maltester. Not sure on the Marina Square connection if there is one.

What a mess this city and its schools are. As someone said on a recent SF Chron blog....what is the difference between the East Oakland ghetto and San Leandro? Answer: Nothing anymore. Sad for our city.

San Leandro's theme song should be Muthaf*in' Ghetto-Hood.

There has been a concerted effort to destroy this city over the passed 25 years. And the willingness of the same fools to continue to elect twits like Tony Santos, Linda Perry, Surlene Grant, Shelia Young, Ellen Corbett et.al only confirms that one reaps what one sows.

I just don't understand, why are the leadership in the city of San Leandro is so blind? The city is in a decline that will not even be fixable if they do not WAKE UP AND TAKE OFF THE ROSE COLORED GLASSES. Can they not see the decline in general appearance around town, the lack of civility, not to mention the high # of home burglaries? Why are the city leaders so blatantly defensive and unable to see how much of the "ghetto" feel has crept in and changed the whole dynamic of this proud city? Do they want everyone that can afford it to move out? I just do not get it??? It is so visible...easy example...just take a drive down East 14th from Downtown to Bayfair. It is scary, creepy and depressing! Just saddens me. Such potential and such a good location in the Bay Area being neglected. (except for the nice Downtown improvements, but even those are hollow, as the store fronts on E 14th and environs sit empty).

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