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Thursday, May 6, 2010

How They Voted

Tattler Featurette

Kill Biking On Spur Alley?

At the Tattler, we've noticed the city council and other deliberative bodies in Emeryville make controversial votes that get forgotten by the residents over time. In deference to the general edification of public policy and to strengthen Emeryville's democratic institutions, we will publish occasional short reminders on how the Power Elite in town have voted on these controversial issues.

At the July 17, 2007 council meeting, the vote was:

Should the Bike Plan be overturned and the former railroad spur east of and parallel to Hollis Street called Spur Alley, a public easement, be given away to a private developer for private parking instead of a bike path?

Nora Davis - YES
Ken Bukowski - YES
Dick Kassis - YES

Ruth Atkin - NO
John Fricke - NO


  1. A note to readers:

    Once again Brian does not give you all the facts. I don't exactly know all the facts on this one either, but I remember the City Attorney advised the Council that they were opening the City up to legal action by not taking this action. Yes, it sucks, but a lot of responsible individuals, myself included, would have begrudgingly voted the same way.

  2. The commenter above has made a false statement; the City Attorney made no such ruling. The Public Easement was part of a negotiation for a developer's project and the city retained the easement to satisfy the Bike Plan. The developer consequently took the right of way for his own tenant's parking without permission. After citizens complained, the council voted to allow the developer to use the right of way for his own private parking. They asked for no compensation. The three council members that voted for the give-a-way stated that this wasn't a big deal since bikes could still wind their way through the parked and moving cars. Ken Bukowski stated that "If we can help the developer and it doesn't hurt biking, I don't see why not".

    The commenter is correct in his admonition that "it sucks".

  3. I remember this. What's particularly bad is the fact that the taxpayers aren't even being paid for use of city's easement. I can't remember how many parking spaces are being given to the developer (more than 10 I'm sure). Even one off street secure parking space is worth a lot of money. Now that we're broke, I'm just thinking about all the money we could have made by renting these spaces out. The council is more interested in giving public assets to their developer campaign donors. Thanks for reminding everybody. I agree, this sucks!

  4. Bikers can use Horton Street, why do they need another? Why do you hate cars so much? Bikers are commonly rude and don't stop at stop signs. Until they start acting in a courteous and law abiding way, why should we do anything to help them?

  5. You don't have to hate cars in order to encourage biking. All you have to do is turn on the TV and look at the oil spill in the gulf to see that we should do everything we can to facilitate more bike riding and alternative transportation.

  6. Thanks for this. Keep up these "how they voted" pieces...sad, but entertaining.

  7. shirley enomotoMay 8, 2010 at 8:41 AM

    some of the recent anonymous commenters (anonymousers?) sound like they're on the city payroll. let's try to guess who's who!

    to anonymous may 6 9:16 p.m. we will lose the horton st. bike lane once construction starts on the "transit center."

  8. I for one think the bikers should get their stupid path so that they stop weaving in and out of traffic like morons. Not that it would probably help.
    Just once I'd like to see a cop giving a moron biker a ticket for not obeying the rules of the road.