Daily news roundup for Wednesday, November 4, 2015
Here's what's happening in the Bay Area, as curated by KALW news:
“San Francisco voters handed a victory Tuesday to Airbnb and city residents who want to turn their homes into vacation rentals. Proposition F, a measure that would have drastically curbed short-term rentals, lost by 55 percent to 45 percent, with all precincts reporting and most mail ballots counted.
“Prop. F was one of the most contentious issueson the ballot and centered on whether vacation rentals divert scarce housing to lucrative illegal year-round hotels, as its backers claimed, or help middle-class people make ends meet, as Airbnb and other opponents of the measure said. Airbnb spent millions to defeat the measure, running the most expensive campaign in this city election.
“‘Losing is always a disappointment,’ said Dale Carlson, who led the initiative campaign. But considering how much money Airbnb lavished on defeating Prop. F, he said the margin was ‘still pretty remarkable.’”
Chabot Gun Club debate draws full house // Fremont Argus (BANG)
“As they prepare to decide the fate of a 52-year-old shooting range in the hills above Castro Valley, East Bay parks officials received impassioned pleas Tuesday from those on both sides of the debate.
“More than 50 people addressed the East Bay Regional Park District, ahead of the board's discussion on whether to renew the Chabot Gun Club's lease at Anthony Chabot Regional Park beyond Dec. 31.
“Some Oakland residents said it is important for law-abiding residents to be trained in safe use of firearms to protect themselves against criminals with guns.
“The Sierra Club and Audubon Society have urged the board to close the club because of extensive lead contamination in soil and water from lead shots. Club critics also say the shooting range noise annoys park neighbors and park hikers and joggers, and disrupts the lives of birds and other wildlife.”
Biotoxin found in Dungeness crab, fishing season imperiled // San Mateo County Times
“The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment recommended late Tuesday that the state put off the start of the Dungeness crab fishing season because of a potentially fatal biotoxin, as state officials scrambled to alert consumers and fishermen to a public health threat.
“The recreational and commercial fisheries were slated to open Saturday and Nov. 15, respectively. It is now highly likely the seasons will be delayed indefinitely until the crab are deemed safe to eat.
“The recommendation came hours after the California Department of Public Health issued an advisory warning consumers not to eat Dungeness or rock crab caught in California. Tests have revealed dangerously high levels of domoic acid, a compound produced by harmful algae blooms that have proliferated this year in the Pacific Ocean, a phenomenon state officials attributed in part to warm ocean temperatures linked to El Niño.”
“One Bay Area police department is being accused of not searching hard enough for evidence.
“Attorneys at the San Francisco Public Defender's Office says they are seeing a disturbing number of cases against innocent people who are eventually exonerated by video evidence.
“There have been at least three cases in San Francisco since July where suspects have been arrested and charged with felony crimes, only to have their charges dropped, or a jury acquits them, because they were not the ones who committed the crimes. The Public Defender's Office blames police for failing to investigate those crimes thoroughly.”
Workers plead with Solano board to resolve labor dispute // Daily Republic (Fairfield-Suisun)
“Solano County workers who filled the chamber Tuesday at the Board of Supervisors meeting listened as more than a dozen employees expressed a range of emotions about resolving an ongoing labor dispute.
“County workers have been without a contract for 37 days when the collective bargaining agreements between the Service Employees International Union Local 1021, which represents more than 1,700 county employees, and the county expired Sept. 28.
“County workers claim they made concessions during the economic downturn, concessions the county promised would be returned.
“They have also expressed frustration in meeting with county representatives, who they say do not have the authority to negotiate terms of the labor contract. The county was also criticized for some of the press releases it has issued during the labor dispute.”
Benicia sustainability commission to conduct workshop with city staff // Times-Herald (Vallejo)
“The Community Sustainability Commission is set to hold a special workshop with Benicia city staff Monday night to discuss future plans. The workshop is scheduled for 6 p.m. at the classroom 2 of the Community Center, 370 East L St.
“The Community Sustainability Commission was created in 2010 to ‘educate, advocate and provide oversight for integrated solutions that balance economic, ecological, and social well-being.’ Part of its duties are overseeing the implementation of the Benicia Climate Action Plan, advising the City Council on matters related to sustainability and the environment, outreach and public education, and providing recommendations regarding the distribution of funds from the 2008 Valero Good Neighbor Steering Committee Settlement Agreement.
"During the workshop, the commission could explore projects in the city’s Budget Implementation Plan that may overlap with the Climate Action Plan. The workshop could also discuss current work groups to evaluate their efficiencies.”