Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Come To San Leandro For The Best Craft Beer in America

Love craft beer? There is a small but mighty city in the East Bay I want to introduce you to. It's called San Leandro. 

You have to come visit us this weekend (Sat. Aug. 26th). Both Drake's & 21st Amendment are hosting celebrations.  

For details visit http://sanleandronext.com/two-exciting-brewery-events-this-weekend/

And while you are in town, also stop by Cleophus Quealy.

Friday, August 18, 2017

San Leandro Should Honor Former City Council Member Surlene Grant

San Leandro City Council July 1, 1998, with its first African American member Surlene Grant.

The national news can be so disheartening. Hatred and prejudice against African Americans, Muslims, Jews, immigrants and transgender persons (to name but a few groups), while always present, are like types of cancers that have metastasized across America this year.

Let’s act, right here in San Leandro, to change this storyline. Specifically, I support the effort to name a public plaza or other location in honor of former City Council member Surlene Grant.

The first African American elected to the San Leandro City Council, Grant’s election set an important precedent, opening the doors of City Hall to persons historically disenfranchised. Today, the majority of City Council members are persons of color. Grant spearheaded the city’s first ordinance requiring affordable housing in the construction of new, for-sale residential housing. More recently, Grant co-founded and serves as a leader of Unity in the Community, a coalition of San Leandrans that celebrates our differences while focused on erasing racism and bigotry in San Leandro.

As current events show, how a city memorializes its past can send a profoundly negative message to certain segments of its population. Alternatively, building and place names, statues and other public art can send powerful, positive symbolic messages.

This is why I was proud to join with other San Leandrans in successfully lobbying the school board in 2009 to name the new campus near San Leandro High School after Fred T. Korematsu. He was an ordinary American wronged by our government who showed extraordinary courage and became a national civil rights hero. Furthermore, despite deeds prohibiting the sale of houses to non-whites which prevented Korematsu and his wife from purchasing a home in the City of San Leandro after World War II, Korematsu loved our community and showed his dedication to San Leandro by being a member of San Leandro Lions Club for 30 years.

The Mayor and City Council should take similar action and recognize another notable San Leandran who has helped make our city a more tolerant community. By dedicating a public location in Surlene Grant’s name, we show that San Leandro acknowledges the racism of its past, embraces its diversity of today, and is a welcoming community for all in the future. Through our words and actions, let’s be a shining beacon of positive energy, mutual respect and tolerance for our state and nation.


Please feel free to share this page with others. If you agree with this effort, please share your views the Mayor and City Council by contacting them by email message to citycouncil@sanleandro.org

Only by many San Leandrans stepping forward and contacting the Mayor and City Council will this proposal become a reality. The power to make change in our city rests in our hands. We simply need to act in unison. 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Contradictions in San Leandro's Medical Marijuana Dispensary Licensing Process

The San Leandro City Council imposed a requirement on the Davis Street Wellness Center, one of the successful applicants to open a medical marijuana dispensary in San Leandro, to have its plans to open a dispensary approved the Board of Zoning Adjustments within a year of receiving its license. This made no sense, particularly because the same requirement was not imposed on the two other entities that received dispensary licenses.
Davis Street has been diligently looking at potential sites for the dispensary and submitted its plans to the City months ago. Finding an appropriate site given limitations under the City zoning code is not a straightforward process. Plus the review process takes time particularly if the Mayor and City Council members seek to influence the process.
If there should be any time limit, it should apply once a dispensary's plans to operate are approved. At that point, the opening of the facility is within the control of the operator. And it is in the City's interest that the facility open in a timely manner so that residents can obtain their medical marijuana and the city can collect tax revenue. 
This is not what has occurred with Harborside, the first entity to receive a medical marijuana dispensary license in San Leandro. Harborside's plans were approved a year ago. It undertaken no work at the commercial site it has leased to renovate and convert the building into a dispensary. Why would it spend the time, money and effort to secure a license and then not work diligently to open the facility? 
Here is a recent article on the situation.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Recreational Cannabis Should Be Legal Under Federal Law

U.S. Sen. Cory Booker is proposing a far-reaching bill that would both legalize marijuana at the federal level and encourage states to legalize it locally through incentives.
Adult recreational marijuana use will be legal in California next January, and a majority of states permit use of medical marijuana. Over 30 million Americans regularly use cannabis. 

Why are we still criminalizing its use at the federal level? 

I support this new legislation.