Oakland City Hall
Oakland City Hall Credit: Amir Aziz

The Oakland City Council is holding two meetings this week. The second is a special meeting dedicated to discussing the community benefits and environmental impact of the proposed Oakland A’s Howard Terminal ballpark development—we’ll have more on that soon.

But first, the council will have its regular meeting on Tuesday at 1 p.m. Here are some items on the agenda: 

School closures: With the state expecting a $45.7 billion surplus this fiscal year, councilmembers Rebecca Kaplan, Carroll Fife, Nikki Fortunato Bas, and Sheng Thao are calling on Gov. Gavin Newsom to revise the state budget to eliminate the Oakland Unified School District’s debt to help prevent school closures. Their resolution also asks the state to change the formula for how schools are funded by ending the practice of financially penalizing districts when sick children miss class. 

Aging facilities: Some of the buildings housing Oakland’s public safety offices have exceeded their useful life, and those departments need to be relocated. The list includes the Police Administration Building tower downtown, which was built in 1962, and decrepit Fire Station 4 at International Boulevard and 12th Street. 

A 2017 study concluded that the best site for a new police headquarters would be on city-owned property next to the Coliseum. City administrators are looking at options for where to relocate Station 4; the new facilities must provide space for the Department of Violence Prevention and the Mobile Assistance Community Responders of Oakland, known as MACRO. Councilmembers will hear a report on those facilities as well as Fire Station 29 in East Oakland. 

The Oakland Police Administration Building at 7th Street and Broadway. Credit: Courtesy of Google maps

Goodbye police headquarters, hello apartments? If the plan to relocate police headquarters, most likely to somewhere in East Oakland, moves forward, Councilmembers Kaplan and Fife are proposing that the current building at 7th Street and Broadway be demolished and that a 600-unit mixed-use apartment complex, with at least 200 affordable units, get built in its place. 

June ballot measure: Oakland voters will be asked to renew a parcel tax that helps fund city libraries but is sunsetting in 2024. According to the city, the tax generates $18 million a year, about 40% of the Oakland Public Library’s total budget. The council will vote to place a measure on the June 7 primary ballot to renew the parcel tax for another 30 years. 

The agenda for Tuesday’s meeting can be found here. And here’s a helpful guide to watching and speaking at council meetings.

David DeBolt reported on City Hall and policing for The Oaklandside. He spent 12 years working for daily newspapers in the Bay Area, including on the Peninsula and Solano County. He joined the Bay Area News Group in 2012 where he covered a variety of beats, most recently as a senior breaking news reporter. During his time at BANG, DeBolt covered Oakland City Hall, the Raiders stadium saga and the A’s search for a new ballpark, as well as the Oakland Police Department and police reform efforts. He was part of the East Bay Times staff honored with the Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News for coverage of the Ghost Ship warehouse fire.