Tag Archives: District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley

Be advised:

LAST WEEK our city argued in court last week the our public safety services (police and fire) did not have a duty to rescue Mr. Raymond Zack (who did not know how to swim) when he was despondent and standing in 4 to 5 feet of extremely calm water at Crown Beach while his elderly mother stood on the shore begging for action.

TODAY the judge ruled for immunity of firefighters over duty. And the judge finds further that: “under the circumstances presented there was no moral blame attendant to the conduct of responding officers and firefighters.”

I have been told that this ruling impacts all cities in the state of California, not just the City of Alameda.

I’m wondering why our fire and police are some of the highest paid in the SF Bay Area . . .    I’ve argued for years that because the fire procedures and protocols are so exceedingly substandard for the industry of firefighting (and I’ve shown this), that the fire staff cannot be held to any performance standards. Hell, our city has worked multiple times, year after year, to cover up fire failures . . . Continue reading

City of Alameda: Villainous

Our city took a position in court yesterday that our public safety services did not have a duty to rescue Raymond Zack.  Our elected officials and city manager should be ashamed of themselves.

See the story on last night’s ABC news here; excellent reporting by Alan Wang.

Mr. Wang, however, was provided false information. He reported that our fire department did not have funding for water rescue training. To do that, Mr. Wang had to have believed what he was told, which means that disinformation had to have come from a source he believed to be credible. So who gave him the disinformation? Was it our city? Our fire department? The firefighter’s union, IAFF Local 689?

The City of Alameda funded water rescue training and re-certifications to be completed in 2009 (source document is here).

The City of Alameda budgeted for the AFD to perform 8 to 10 water rescues per year for 2009 -2012 (source document is here).

Every resident and visitor to the City of Alameda has a right to expect to be rescued by our public safety services.

Given the information in the source documents noted above: Without a doubt (it is incontrovertible that) we all—

Mr. Zack, his family, and all residents and visitors to the City of Alameda—

had a right to expect Mr. Zack to be rescued by our public safety services.

Our city is arguing that they had no duty to perform. How perverse. It is unconscionable that our city should argue this. And it is villainous . . . Continue reading


Letter to local newspaper editors:

We are a small unaffiliated group of Alameda residents who wrote, signed, and sent a request for an investigation to California State Attorney General (AG) Kamala Harris. We are unrelated by campaigns or any politics but are united in a single purpose: we have a right to expect fire services to rescue and protect us and we have a right to expect our city management to ensure this.

It seems simple, yet our city has been failing us in this regard for years—we have been subjected to a series of extreme city-wide exposures to highly toxic and regulated substances (asbestos and crude oil) and now these failings have culminated in the death of Raymond Zack.

Why?  Moreover, what or whom is next?!

Our fire services have politicized the issue, and rather than take our complaints seriously, our mayor exacerbated the situation: without a recruitment process, she placed a retired captain unqualified to lead at the helm of our fire services of a city of 74,000 residents. This contradicts everything we know about how fire and public management skills, rank, ICS (Incident Command System), and recent experience matter when it comes to public safety services. We brought our concerns to fire and city management and leadership. When those proved unresponsive, we felt it was necessary for the safety of this community to escalate it and bring these issues to the attention of AG Harris.

Signed: Horst Breuer (former Economic Development Commission Chair), Greg de Haan, Adam Gillitt (2010 city council candidate), Denise Lai, Mark Linde, Karin Lucas (attorney, former city council member), Rosemary McNally,  Liz Williams.

Next election.

Remember Mr. Oh’s advice: “…we must vote based on not what they [candidates] say, but from where their money flows. After all, it’s not the puppets we’re voting in but the hands that hold the (purse) strings.”  It’s easy enough to keep track of the money going into each candidate’s pocket, between candidates’ and elected officials’ pockets, and flowing out of special interests pockets, businesses, PACs (Political Action Committee), NGOs (Non Governmental Organizations), etc.  Alameda County Registrar of Voters searchable database is here.  Searchable city database is here.


Mr. Oh’s Open Letter to Mr. Bonta

Dear Mr. Bonta:

Congratulations in announcing your run for District Assembly in 2012. I’m sure you’ve learned much in your few months in office as Alameda councilmember, such as: relying on the Democratic Party machine and pandering to Asian American voters, as they’ll surely put a check on that box regardless of your actions and campaign funding sources. Negotiating with unions such as the Alameda firefighters while accepting campaign contributions from them. Next time, you’ll learn not to undershoot the amount of kick-back money you could get for your treasury, Rob!

Professing the desire to help one constituency, meanwhile opening the door to the next step up. I’m sure you’ll yet again say, “I’ve always hoped I could serve Alameda for as long as the voters would have me and this is a chance to strengthen and deepen my commitment to Alameda” as you run for U.S. Senate.

I’m sure you’re a real nice fellow. But everything you’ve done while in office has only reinforced my perception that you are simply another politician willing sell your votes for a chance at the next step up the ladder.

Your time in Alameda was well served — for you. You’ve learned that old politician’s tricks are still the most effective at getting elected, and re-elected, over and again. Just keep looking upwards and climbing, baby, because the responsibilities you leave behind may not be so pleasant.

To my fellow Alameda residents, let’s please use our heads instead of our hearts next time election time comes. One’s skin tone, party affiliation, or appealing rhetoric does not mean they stand for our interests. Be it President of the United States or a simple city councilmember, we must vote based on not what they say, but from where their money flows. After all, it’s not the puppets we’re voting in but the hands that hold the (purse) strings.

— Gene Oh

Video: Last Nights City Council Meeting

Online now here.

Go to 41.55 minutes to see The Crown Beach Event discussion, aka The Zack Assisted Suicide.

Hiatus. Sort of.

Too busy this week to post much, but I want to mention two items.

ONE: The FPPC (Fair Political Practices Commission) is investigating Dr. Deutsch.  They responded to my request to look into what I see is a conflict of interest.  We all know that we need medical staff on the hospital board; that’s not the issue. What is the issue is that  without the Alameda Healthcare District (AHD) board’s annual vote to levy the parcel tax on us, the hospital could not afford to exist.  Through his practice and clinic located within the hospital walls, Dr. Deutsch earns over $200K per year.  As a board member, he has never recused himself from this annual AHD vote.  This is a serious conflict of interest.  Stay tuned; I am waiting to hear what the FPPC says, and too, what the witnesses to this conflict say in writing to the FPPC. Those witnesses are Hospital CEO Deborah Stebbins, AHD Board president Jordan Battani, and City Councilmember Rob Bonta (prior AHD board member).  They know far more than I about the dependence of Deutsch’s private practice and clinic on the hospital.

TWO:  Back to our future.  Interesting in today’s Alameda Sun, John Knox White writes about the financial instability of our city….which is exactly why so many of us are perturbed at the fiduciary irresponsibility shown by Mayor Gilmore… Continue reading

Gilmore’s Sting

How was it possible that the vote to hire meyers nave law firm was 5-0?

The **unrecorded** vote was at the beginning of the closed session on 12/28/2010, well before the third agenda item of the closed session. And that third agenda item, the one titled  “PUBLIC EMPLOYEE DISCIPLINE/DISMISSAL/RELEASE”, was widely understood to be solely about the city attorney.  Why? Because Mayor Gilmore told people that it was. But it wasn’t.  Hmmm. What do we call that?  Oh, right: lying. … Continue reading