The Demolition of Woodrow Wilson Elementary

Most traditional public schools built today are built to last 50 or more years (most charter schools are built to different standards.  They’re built as office buildings so if the charter school fails or needs to relocate, the buildings can be repurposed.  Traditional public schools must adhere to the Field Act which dictates specific building codes for schools.  [Enacted in 1933 after a major southern California earthquake rendered 237 schools unusable.]  Many charter schools only have to apply for permits through the local Planning Commission instead of the Division of the State Architect (DSA). Schools built in earlier years were not designed to last as long as schools designed today. Woodrow Wilson Elementary School (formerly located at 629 42ndStreet in Richmond) was built in 1953 and, in recent years, was showing its age. If it was a human being, it would be eligible for Medicare.  If the parents of the students attending Wilson can be believed, the school absolutely needed to be replaced—NOW! Continue reading

CONGRESSMAN MARK DESAULNIER TOWN HALL MEETING

More than 600 of Congressman Mark DeSaulnier’s constituents gathered at Harding Elementary School in El Cerrito to listen to what the Congressman had to say about the Mueller Report. WATCH THE VIDEO AT: DeSaulnier Town Hall Meeting Continue reading

CITY OF PRIDE AND PURPOSE CHAPTER 2 GRADUATION CEREMONIES UPDATE

After last week’s graduations at the Richmond Convention Center, concerns were raised about the level of clean up between events—in particular between Friday evening’s Pinole Valley HS graduation and Saturday morning’s El Cerrito HS event. Continue reading

UNUSUAL FOOD AND WINE, MUSIC AND FUN

Back in the day, transplanted Jews would complain that they could not find decent Jewish food in the Bay area.  Those days seem like a dim memory and an upcoming event in Richmond will underscore that. Continue reading

SENIOR SCAM STOPPER

From Assemblymember Buffy Wicks and Contra Costa Supervisor John Gioia: Continue reading

Transportation Town Hall

Getting from home to work, getting from one city to another, metering lights, the parking lot labeled as Interstate 80—these take up a large part of our waking hours.  We can sit back and hope things will get better on their own, we can check with real estate agents in Montana where traffic is less of an issue OR we can let our elected officials know what we think in the hopes they will step up and represent us to make our lives better. Continue reading

A Beloved Family Member Has Run Off

Many of us have extended families—some members of which shed on our couches, piddle on the carpet and demand our attention night and day. I’m referring to our pets.  They may be ‘just’ animals but they’re family. Continue reading

Catherine Montalbo ~ Qualified to Serve?

At last Tuesday's Richmond City Council meeting one of the consent calendar items was the Council approval of the Mayor's appointment of three applicants to the Community Police Review Commission.  Led by the Richmond Progressive Alliance--which voted to oppose the appointment of Catherine Montalbo, petitions were circulated, more than a dozen speakers spoke under Public Forum advocating that because her beliefs did not mesh with theirs, she was unqualified to serve. Mayor Butt chose to pull the item from consideration so he could give the matter further consideration. Using his popular eforum, Mayor Butt posted the following as a response to Tuesday night's response to his appointment. Continue reading

Should Catherine Montalbo be Appointed to Serve on the Richmond Community Police Review Commission

Appointments made to the Richmond Community Police Review Commission have become highly politicized. Some members of the community—with major support from the Richmond Progressive Alliance (RPA) and their members serving on the City Council—have their own ideas about what qualifies an applicant to serve their community on this commission. A couple of years back former Councilmember Vinay Pimplé was nominated but the RPA backed members of the Council refused to allow the appointment to be ratified.  These RPA Councilmembers took exception to previous actions made by Pimplé when he served on the Council. On Tuesday, March 19th the Council will take action to either accept or reject the nomination of Catherine Montalbo.  Petitions, Facebook comments and the RPA Newsletter all advocate against her serving on this commission with many of the comments claiming that she’ a racist. One claimed that she wasn't Latina enough to serve. Radio Free Richmond has offered Ms. Montalbo an opportunity to address these charges against her.  The following is a letter sent by Ms. Montalbo to the Mayor and the Council. Continue reading
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