Responses to MOBN!’s District 2 City Council Candidate Questionnaire

Make Oakland Better Now! sent candidate questionnaires concerning the most critical issues facing the City of Oakland to all five District 2 City Council Candidates.  We received responses from four of the five candidates, not receiving responses from Ken Maxey. Links to the complete responses are here:

District 2:  Abel Guillen, Dana King, Kevin Blackburn, Andrew Park

The questionnaire, with links to candidate answers to individual questions, is below.

MOBNgreenlogo

Council Candidate Questionnaire

NOTE: PLEASE LIMIT YOUR ANSWERS TO 250 WORDS EXCEPT WHERE THE QUESTION INDICATES A DIFFERENT WORD LIMIT.

To see candidate responses to questions, click on their name and you will be moved further down this web page to their response. By clicking on the links titled “Go To Top of Page”, you will be redirected to this point in the post.


QUESTION 1. Please state your position on the following November ballot measures along with a brief

(No more than 30 word) statement supporting your position.
● Measure Z: Public Safety (Parcel tax for police, fire and violence prevention programs)
● Measure CC: Public Ethics (Restructuring of Public Ethics Commission and mandatory funding for its staff)
● Measure DD: Redistricting (Citizens’ redistricting commission for City Council
boundaries )

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 2. MOBN!’s public safety plan calls for increasing Oakland’s police force to 900 sworn officers within four years. To reach this goal, MOBN! advocates that the city should: 1) not layoff any Oakland police officers under any circumstances; 2) schedule, fund, and conduct sufficient police academies each year to increase that number, not simply replace officers who retire or otherwise leave the force; and 3) make increasing the size of the police department its number one priority. Do you agree or disagree?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 3. OPD’s difficulty in achieving the authorized sworn staffing level appears to be  exacerbated by high attrition and low morale, as shown by the department’s internal polling (http://tiny.cc/OPDPoliceSurvey) and it’s loss of officers only months after they complete their training.  How should the City solve OPD’s attrition and morale problems?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 4. OPD has been under Federal Court supervision for close to twelve years.  While Oaklanders have repeatedly been told that the end is in sight, in late July, Judge Henderson stated that Oakland’s disciplinary processes have violated Court orders, and that continuing the same practices will “undermine any confidence in the sustainability of the reforms that have been and continue to be achieved.” Then, on August 14, the Judge criticized the City’s recent inability to sustain through arbitration an officer termination in connection with response to the Occupy Oakland protests. (Source: http://tiny.cc/ArbOrder.) The Court opined that Oakland could not be in compliance with two NSA tasks if internal investigations were inadequate and “discipline is not consistently imposed.” Many people believe the Monitor has repeatedly imposed requirements on Oakland that far exceed the literal requirements of the NSA, and that as a result of the Monitor’s shifting standards, Oakland may never be able to extricate itself from Court supervision.  As a City Council member, to what extent would you be prepared to oppose continued and changing demands from the Monitor, and what is your plan to end the era of Court supervision?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 5. According to the Public Works Department, Oakland is on an 85-year repaving schedule, meaning a street that is repaved today won’t be repaved again for 85 years. Further, according to Public Works, maintaining the existing pavement condition on Oakland’s streets would require an estimated $28 million annually, while the amount allocated annually has been less than $6 million in recent years. Sixty percent of the City’s curb ramps are non-compliant or non-existent. The total needed to rehabilitate Oakland streets is over $435 million. How do you plan to reverse the ongoing deterioration of our streets and sidewalks? If you are elected, when will Oaklanders see a difference?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 6. The extent to which the City faces unfunded liabilities and what should be done about them has been a contentious issue in recent years. As recently as last December, the City Administrator projected that for the three fiscal years beginning July 1, 2015, Oakland faces all-funds budget structural shortfalls totaling $795 million if it addresses its deferred capital expenses and deferred liabilities, and $342 million if it does not (Source: December 12, 2013 Update to Five-Year Financial Forecast, Attachment D, http://tiny.cc/5yrupdate.) Do you believe Oakland faces a financial shortfall, and if so, how will you address it if elected in November?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 7. Operation Ceasefire has been described as the centerpiece of Oakland’s violent crime reduction effort. We understand that funding for its manager has been dependent on grant funding and that there is an insufficient number of case managers to maximize Ceasefire’s success.   Do you support expanding Operation Ceasefire?  Where specifically do you propose allocating resources and staffing?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 8. In 2012-2013, Oakland contracted with Strategic Policy Partners (Robert Wasserman et al.) to present a comprehensive public safety plan.  Strategic Policy Partners made a large number of recommendations, some of which have been implemented and some of which have not. (The reports are here:  http://tiny.cc/SPPReport, http://tiny.cc/Bratton1, http://tiny.cc/SPPBest)  If the voters elect you in November, please state whether you will support implementing the following recommendations (We are looking for a “yes” or “no” answer, with explanatory narrative not exceeding 25 words for each recommendation):

Call for Service Reduction strategy;

Expanded investigation capacity in each of the City’s 5 policing districts, so that each district has an investigative sergeant, 3 investigators, and 3 to 5 police officers.

Increased sworn police personnel to a ratio of 2 officers for every 1,000 in the population (i.e., 800). 

Expansion of the Ceasefire initiative.

Redesign of community policing, so that the entire Police Department, not just PSOs, are focused on community relationship building.

Measurement of the state of community / police relations.

Moving restorative justice practices into the community, to address neighborhood disorder and minor crimes in a manner that brings community into the process and prevents future crime and disorder occurrences.

Appointing a Director of Community Improvement who will be responsible for coordinating collaborative action by city agencies, community groups and state and federal partners, to address both quality of life issues and crime. 

Appointing a team of representatives from the community to work with the Director of Community Improvement, the Police Department and other government agencies to insure community coordination. 

Bringing Security Ambassadors into the crime reduction strategic plan and require advanced training to those who patrol downtown areas, so they are active and have the ability to intervene in minor situations that impact public security.

QUESTION 9. In early 2010, Oakland’s Finance and Management Committee received a presentation from staff and visiting personnel from the City of Baltimore concerning CitiStat, a leadership strategy a mayor can employ to mobilize city agencies to produce specific results.  (More information is at http://tiny.cc/q00ojx ).  CitiStat involves use of a round-the-clock 311 reporting system for any request for city services other than policing. It uses data in a manner similar to ComStat. High level city management uses the 311-generated data and benchmarks and regular meetings to hold departments accountable, judge successes and failure, reveal what agencies are doing and not doing to achieve benchmarks and provide the best possible services to residents.  Explain your familiarity with CitiStat and whether you believe such a program can and should be implemented in Oakland.  If you do not believe it should be implemented in the near future, explain why.  If you think it should, explain what you will do to support implementation.  

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 10. Oakland has room to improve its policies in the areas of crime reduction, budget processes, street maintenance, and economic maintenance. What cities can Oakland learn from, and adopt or emulate policies from with respect to these subjects? What policies from other cities would benefit Oakland?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

QUESTION 11. Do you support the following policies and, briefly, why or why not?

 A. Creation by Charter amendment of a Rainy day fund as recommended by MOBN! and the Budget Advisory Committee (BAC)?

B. Annual polling of city residents on their satisfaction with city services? What would you do with that information?

C. Conducting a police resource deployment study to determine the number of officers actually need by OPD and how they should be deployed?

D. Will you support the preparation of a comprehensive public safety plan?

Kevin Blackburn

Abel Guillen

Dana King

Andrew Park

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Candidate Responses

Question 1

Kevin Blackburn

• Measure Z: Public Safety (Parcel tax for police, fire and violence prevention programs) Support. Crime and public safety is my top priority, and we need to fully fund our police, fire, and violence prevention programs.
• Measure XX: Public Ethics (Restructuring of Public Ethics Commission and mandatory funding for its staff)
Support. I support efforts to ensure the Public Ethics Commission has the staff needed to hold our government accountable and promote greater transparency and open government.
• Measure XX: Redistricting (Redistricting commission for City Council boundaries )
Support. We shouldn’t allow elected officials to draw their own districts, and I support a fair, independent redistricting commission. It worked for California and it can work for Oakland

Abel Guillen

I support both measures. Measure Z continues an important revenue stream for our police department, and Measure XX allows the reforms previously approved by voters in 1998 to be truly implemented.

Dana King

• Measure Z: Public Safety (Parcel tax for police, fire and violence prevention programs)

82%of Oaklanders support Measure Z. I am inclined to support it but have concerns. I am conflicted about Measure Z’s lack of transparency and accountability.

• Measure XX: Public Ethics (Restructuring of Public Ethics Commission and mandatory funding for its staff)
I support it but wonder why it needs to cost an additional 500k. What is the accountability mechanism for this additional funding.

• Measure XX: Redistricting (Redistricting commission for City Council boundaries )
Yes. It’s important to bring transparency into the process as by bringing in public input as opposed to continuing to allowing politicians to determine
boundaries.

Andrew Park

Measure Z: Public Safety (Parcel tax for police, fire and violence prevention programsI support Measure Z though it is with some reservation. I know the grievances many Oaklanders have with Measure Y as I share the same concerns and thoughts.

Measure XX: Public Ethics (Restructuring of Public Ethics Commission and mandatory funding for its staff) I support the Public Ethics Measure. Trust if vital and this measure is a step in the right direction. Watchdog agencies such as this need teeth.

Measure XX: Redistricting (Redistricting commission for City Council boundariesI support the Redistricting Measure.

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Question 2

Kevin Blackburn

I strongly agree. Public safety is my highest priority and that starts with hiring enough police offices to have traffic detail again, which we currently do not have. Traffic Details are an essential part of a complete police force and a clear sign that there is a police presence in a city. And whether we like it or not they are a deterrent to motor vehicle violations, and they do generate revenue for the city by enforcing the law. We need to aggressively develop a pipeline to hire police officers from Oakland, who reflect the diversity of our community and understand what community policing truly means. I support any efforts to hire more officers in a sustainable manner and I think we should hold our police force accountable and responsive to the community. Oakland’s economy is booming but our government is bust. The money is there to hire police officers and support police academies but we need Councilmembers who have real life experience – and not just political experience.

Abel Guillen

Agree.

Dana King

Agree

Andrew Park

I agree but not with the 900 number. The number I think Oakland needs is that number when we can have walking officers in business districts and regular traffic patrols. I fully agree with not laying off any police officers. It doesn’t make good business sense since it takes so much money to recruit, vet, on-board, train, and season an officer. I think Oakland would do well with closer to 800 officers, with hundreds of civilian staff helping with crime lab processing, dispatcher positions, etc. Police are the short term solution to public safety. Community policing and community development are the long-term solutions. For instance, in the Bella Vista/Highland community, we have helped to solve 3 of the 5 murders this year. We have stopped at least one retaliation shooting through community involvement and policing. We have thus saved over hundreds of hours of police man-hours in investigations, crime-lab processing, VOC outreach, and court dates.

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Question 3

Kevin Blackburn

The City can solve attrition and morale problems by focusing on police officers and those who have dedicated their lives to protecting the people of Oakland. As
Councilmember, I will work with the OPD to institutionalize hiring officers that reflect the diversity of Oakland’s resident. I believe officer moral would improve if they had more support from City Hall and fellow members of the department and worked with the community – and not just against. When people know and trust whom they are working with, they begin to form a more collaborative and supportive working environment. The leadership in the Department needs to reflect these values as well. Many responses to what the Department can do to make the daily working environment better say as much. If that means more training for managers, lets make it happen. This needs to be a grassroots and grass tips effort.

Abel Guillen

The safety of our neighborhoods and communities is priority number one for me. Part of the reason morale is low is that our police officers feel they are at the political whims of the current administration. The OPD needs City Council members who will support proven constitutional policing practices, make sure police aren’t working excessively, and offer consistent support that will help to increase moral. I am committed to ensuring police officers have the resources and staff they need to keep our neighborhoods safe.

Dana King

Morale is low for a variety of reasons. Officers are currently working 10 hours of overtime per week and according to the police union: internal discipline is
perceived to be unbalanced; there has been instability of leadership in the Chief’s office until recently; lack of working equipment; lack of adequate training; paperwork; a visceral sense of feeling taken for granted by residents and city officials and of course, working under the NSA.
Hiring additional officers would alleviate a lot of the stress caused by understaffing, whether the goal is 800 per the national minimum for a city the size of Oakland or Chief Whent’s goal of 900 officers. Increasing night patrols to 2 per vehicle (for both safety and accountability), bringing back the mounted patrols, providing and requiring continuing education for all officers (equipment, technology, anti-bias, people skills, use of force, etc.), assigning officers to specific communities, creating and continuing programs to foster long-term communication and relationships between officers and the residents of Oakland.
Reasons for attrition are more complicated. Discussions with Chief Whent and Barry Donelon confirm the loss of officers to competing departments, especially SFPD and BART. Money does not appear to be part of the attrition equation. A change requires Improving morale as noted above, coming up with creative incentives in return for a commitment to the OPD, carefully and thoughtfully tracking new recruits, including all officers in discussions of what they need, what works and what doesn’t and following through.

Andrew Park

Hire more officers, especially persons with an affinity for urban metros, preferably from Oakland. Police suicides are troubling. Police see the worst of the worst in Oakland, and in this respect, their experience is similar to many hardened criminals. We need an open conversation about police officers NOT being an occupying force, but rather deputized citizens, human beings who have chosen to take on the difficult task of enforcing the law. Humans needs re-charging, rest, counseling, care, restorative and reconnecting activities. Our police officers need these activities more than anyone.

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Question 4

Kevin Blackburn

Reforms are well-intentioned, but we need to focus on what is our top priority –
improving public safety and making our streets truly safer. Institutions develop
reputations based on perceived actions- or inaction. Unfortunately, the OPD has come under Court supervision because of a perception that it cannot or will not carry out Court mandated “reforms.” As a City Council member, I will clarify the literal and intended requirements of the Negotiated Settlement Agreement and whether the OPD has continued to be in compliance with these standards. In terms of shifting demands from the Monitor, I will stand up for OPD and be an advocate when I believe the Department has hit or made progress based on NSA toward its accountability, supervision, training, management oversight, and transparency goals.

Abel Guillen

While we need to continue to ensure the OPD is making progress toward reforms, the requirements of the NSA cannot be a moving target. I would oppose all demands of the Monitor that exceed the requirements of the NSA. We must give our police the resources they need to protect our community. I believe given adequate resources, the OPD can make rapid progress on reforms that will allow for ending the Court supervision.

Dana King

The NSA is like a moving target. I am prepared to oppose the continued and changing demands from the Monitor. If the city believes that it has complied in both scope, intent and actuality to the obligations the the NSA, then the city might consider the possibility of litigating to prove that compliance has been met and the services of the Monitor are no longer necessary.

Andrew Park

I think Chief Whent and Asst. Chief Figueroa have done more in one year than previous command staff have done in the past 5. As an elected, I would support the experts in the field and not hire more consultants unless they requested it. I would put my political and community will behind them and lend them the support they need to get Oakland out of receivership. I think Judge Henderson will listen to a unified Oakland. Losing arbitration is troubling. If Police Chiefs and City Administrators cannot fire bad officers, then Oakland will not get out of receivership anytime soon.

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Question 5

Kevin Blackburn

Rehabilitating Oakland’s streets has to be a top priority for the city – because if our public spaces are well maintained, crime will go down. And that’s a fact. Attractive and safe streets bring in commercial and residential opportunities, creating jobs and safe community spaces in Oakland. As a Councilmember, I will work with the Public Works Department to rehabilitate Oakland’s streets – and engage the community on their ideas and visions for making Oakland better – perhaps with art installations, urban gardens and more. Together, we can and must surmount a major issue that holds our city back from its growth potential.

Abel Guillen

Making sure Oakland residents get the services they need, including fixing streets and potholes is one of the reasons I’m running. If we don’t fix our streets now, they will only get more expensive to fix. And our deteriorating streets are a safety issues for both cars and cyclists. I support Alameda County’s Measure BB to bring funding to fix our street now so that residents see improvements quickly.

Dana King

It has been estimated that poor road surfaces cost the average US driver $324 per year in vehicle repairs. Also, it has been estimated that small improvements in road surface conditions can decrease fuel consumption between 1.8 and 4.7%. There are reasonable prospects for utilizing and maintaining economically viable, long life surfaces on heavily traffic roads. No roadway can endure an 85 year repaving schedule. Let’s examine the context in which that decision was made. Conventional asphalt has a limited lifespan of about 12 years. There have been advances made in surface materials and pavement management over the years. It’s incumbent upon Public Works to be as up to date as possible in order to provide Oakland residents with the best possible options. Wear and tear can be diminished over the long haul by supporting shifts in transportation usage, promoting bicycling, walking and mass transit in urban areas.The city is currently on a 25 year transportation schedule, in partnership with ACTC, that shifts the travel burden from cars to mass transit and focuses increasing population density on transit oriented development. In the short run, Measure BB on the November ballot proposes to spend unprecedented investments for pedestrian and bicycle safety and infrastructure as well as for transit-oriented development. 30% of the proposed sales tax revenue will also go towards roadway improvement. Oakland has representatives on the ACTC and I would do my level best to encourage their time be spent promoting the needs of Oakland

Andrew Park

It all starts with public safety. We prioritize hiring more community minded police officers. Next is infrastructure. We put most of our one time revenues such as RETT into roads, lights, sewer funds, etc.

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Question 6

Kevin Blackburn

It is clear to me that the city faces significant financial shortfalls arising from deferred capital expenses and liabilities. The key for the city to raise revenues to start paying off these debts is smart, sustainable growth. By supporting key industries like health care and the Port of Oakland (logistics), and creating attractive development and business environments for new industry clusters like renewable energy to emerge, Oakland can develop a critical tax base. In addition to bringing businesses to Oakland, I advocate for developing housing and housing policies to stimulate economic development. In my capacity at the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco, I worked to enact the Banks’
Affordable Housing Program and Advances for Homeownership and Economic
Development (AHEAD) programs. The AHP has provided gap funding grants to
affordable housing developers in California, Nevada and Arizona totaling $845 million helping to fund the creation of 116,000 units of affordable housing. In Oakland, the Bank has awarded $27 million in grants to 80 projects creating 3084 rental and 263 ownership units in Oakland. These are examples of win-win housing programs for developers and residents, and represent new tax bases for the city to cover its financial shortfalls.

Abel Guillen

We do need to address the City’s unfunded liabilities. With my background as a Peralta Community Colleges Trustee and municipal finance advisor, I have the necessary experience managing budgets efficiently to ensure we are addressing our financial obligations. For every one dollar we use today to pay down debt, this gives us a return of an average of three dollars that could be used to fund services. However, we cannot continue to accept that City revenues cannot support unfunded liabilities or local services. I will work to grow Oakland’s economy to increase City revenues. Oakland’s sales tax revenue is much lower than similar size cities because our retail base is so small. We must attract more businesses to Oakland to increase our tax base so that we have the revenue needed to address our financial obligations.

Dana King

Yes, I believe the city faces a significant financial shortfall. The first order of business it to establish a charter amendment for a “rainy day fund” for the city of Oakland.
Once established, that policy will determine the protocol for disbursement of any surplus funds. There must be a concerted effort to pay down the city’s debt

Andrew Park

Yes. We cannot continue to kick the can down the road. Transparency and reliable budget documents (Open Oakland is a good start); then coming to a general understanding of the budget (youtube videos, Urban strategies/independent think-tank assessments); finally moving forward in shared sacrifice with the promise of NOT going back on past agreements and that most future decisions will be made at the collective bargaining table

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Question 7

Kevin Blackburn

Ceasefire has been remarkably successful in reducing violent crime in Oakland. We need more statistical evidence to show it’s sustainable at a larger scale, and I will fight as a councilmember to expand Operation Ceasefire. We need to secure sustainable funding- whether that’s through governmental or NGO support- to hire and train an adequate number of qualified case managers. As Councilmember, I will convene a committee of representatives from OPD, NGOs, Faith-Based and community leaders in violence prevention to discuss funding, resource allocation, and staffing for this program.

Abel Guillen

Yes, Public Safety is one of my top priorities. Operation Ceasefire has helped lower Oakland’s rates of violent crime. Currently, Operation Ceasefire is mainly in the area of East Oakland spanning to the border of San Leandro because of the high instances of homicides in that region. Operation Ceasefire should be brought to other high crime neighborhoods like West Oakland, after relationships have been established between the community, police and other active non-profits that are working to reduce murder and acts of violent crime in Oakland.

Dana King

Yes, I support the expansion of Ceasefire. Ceasefire receives funding from grants and Measure Y and if passed by voters in November, the new Measure Z.

Andrew Park

I would have to hear more from the Asst. Chief. Ceasefire has been effective not just because of the carrot/stick approach but because of geographic realignment, and mainly command staff’s bold decision to go “all-in” in East Oakland. Also, from my experience co-chairing my Neighborhood Crime Prevention Council, community involvement and engagement cannot be over-stated. Volunteerism and community engagement affects the bottom line when crimes are solved and prevented and has huge, positive budgetary impacts.

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Question 8

Kevin Blackburn

• Call for Service Reduction strategy
Yes, with strategic projects, like Ceasefire, our police force can become more effective with careful, coordinated community action and other strategic policing initiatives.
• Expanded investigation capacity in each of the City’s 5 policing districts, so that each district has an investigative sergeant, 3 investigators, and 3 to 5 police
officers.
Yes, by ensuring the city prioritizes investigative units, we can better understand and prevent crimes.
• Increased sworn police personnel to a ratio of 2 officers for every 1,000 in the population (i.e., 800).
Yes, prioritizing a traffic detail that can generate revenue for the city.
• Expansion of the Ceasefire initiative.
Yes, if statistical outcomes match program goals.
• Redesign of community policing, so that the entire Police Department, not just PSOs, are focused on community relationship building.
Yes, and hiring new officers from local communities in Oakland will optimize this practice.
• Measurement of the state of community / police relations.
Yes. This is vital for tracking performance to incorporate broad support and
commitments from all community and police stakeholders. You can manage what you don’t measure.
• Moving restorative justice practices into the community, to address neighborhood disorder and minor crimes in a manner that brings community into the process and prevents future crime and disorder occurrences.
Yes. Restorative justice practices are the foundation for community based violence and crime prevention.
• Appointing a Director of Community Improvement who will be responsible for
coordinating collaborative action by city agencies, community groups and state and federal partners, to address both quality of life issues and crime.
Yes. Ideally include someone who can gain philanthropic support as well for community initiatives.

• Appointing a team of representatives from the community to work with the Director of Community Improvement, the Police Department and other government agencies to insure community coordination.
Yes, with the understanding these agencies will publicly detail the criteria for appointing these representatives.
• Bringing Security Ambassadors into the crime reduction strategic plan and require advanced training to those who patrol downtown areas, so they are active and have the ability to intervene in minor situations that impact public security.
Yes, and include learning best practices in other large metropolitan cities in this plan.

Abel Guillen

Call for Service Reduction strategy;

Yes

Expanded investigation capacity in each of the City’s 5 policing districts, so that each district has an investigative sergeant, 3 investigators, and 3 to 5 police officers.

No. Not every policing District has the same amount of crime.

Increased sworn police personnel to a ratio of 2 officers for every 1,000 in the population (i.e., 800).

Yes, however, a more comprehensive and realistic plan needs to be created to effectively grow Oakland’s police personnel.

Expansion of the Ceasefire initiative.

Yes

Redesign of community policing, so that the entire Police Department, not just PSOs, are focused on community relationship building.

Yes. A larger emphasis and effort needs to be made to build relationships between the police and city residents.

Measurement of the state of community / police relations.

Yes

Moving restorative justice practices into the community, to address neighborhood disorder and minor crimes in a manner that brings community into the process and prevents future crime and disorder occurrences.

Yes

Appointing a Director of Community Improvement who will be responsible for coordinating collaborative action by city agencies, community groups and state and federal partners, to address both quality of life issues and crime.

Yes, there needs to be some central organizing of public safety efforts however, it needs to be effective and not simply another committee.

Appointing a team of representatives from the community to work with the Director of Community Improvement, the Police Department and other government agencies to insure community coordination.

Yes. We need to work to ensure we have the capacity to have adequate involvement with the community, particularly our influential faith-based communities.

Bringing Security Ambassadors into the crime reduction strategic plan and require advanced training to those who patrol downtown areas, so they are active and have the ability to intervene in minor situations that impact public security.

Yes, this allows us to use pre-established programs more effectively.

Dana King

• Call for Service Reduction strategy;
• Expanded investigation capacity in each of the City’s 5 policing districts, so that each district has an investigative sergeant, 3 investigators, and 3 to 5
police officers. YES. It’s important to close the books on outstanding and current crimes in order to provide a sense of closure and justice in the community.
• Increased sworn police personnel to a ratio of 2 officers for every 1,000 in the population (i.e., 800). YES. That is the national minimum standard for
policing . Chief Whent would like to see an increase in Oakland to 900 officers.
• Expansion of the Ceasefire initiative. YES. Ceasefire is a success and the city should do what it can to expand its reach.
• Redesign of community policing, so that the entire Police Department, not just PSOs, are focused on community relationship building. YES. Community as
well as Constitutional policing must be implemented if Oakland is serious about bridging gaps between communities and police.
• Measurement of the state of community / police relations. YES, it’s imperative that we monitor how we are doing in order to know how to grow.
• Moving restorative justice practices into the community, to address neighborhood disorder and minor crimes in a manner that brings community into the process and prevents future crime and disorder occurrences. YES. Restorative justice works in all ways. It works in Rwanda to ease the pain of genocide. It can work in Oakland.
• Appointing a Director of Community Improvement who will be responsible for coordinating collaborative action by city agencies, community groups and state
and federal partners, to address both quality of life issues and crime. POSSIBLY, I see the value but would like to know how the position would be paid. Would it be categorized as city staff or come from the outside since the scope is so broad. Can funding be derived from Measure Y (Z)?
• Appointing a team of representatives from the community to work with the Director of Community Improvement, the Police Department and other government agencies to insure community coordination. See Above
• Bringing Security Ambassadors into the crime reduction strategic plan and require advanced training to those who patrol downtown areas, so they are active
and have the ability to intervene in minor situations that impact public security. YES, but I would proceed cautiously with regard to intervening in minor situations as the level of liability for the city soars.

Andrew Park

Call for Service Reduction strategy; Yes

Expanded investigation capacity in each of the City’s 5 policing districts, so that each district has an investigative sergeant, 3 investigators, and 3 to 5 police officers. Yes. But with disclaimer that I would primarily support OPD command staff as this is their expertise.

Increased sworn police personnel to a ratio of 2 officers for every 1,000 in the population (i.e., 800). Yes. But with disclaimer that I would primarily support OPD command staff as this is their expertise.

Expansion of the Ceasefire initiative. Yes. But with disclaimer that I would primarily support OPD command staff as this is their expertise.

Redesign of community policing, so that the entire Police Department, not just PSOs,

are focused on community relationship building. No. For now we need dedicated community policing officers because the same boon-doggle that happened with Measure Y can happen with all police officers being PSOs, when they can be pulled off into CRTs, SWAT, and other special assignments.

Measurement of the state of community / police relations. Yes

Moving restorative justice practices into the community, to address neighborhood disorder and minor crimes in a manner that brings community into the process and prevents future crime and disorder occurrences. yes

Appointing a Director of Community Improvement who will be responsible for coordinating collaborative action by city agencies, community groups and state and federal partners, to address both quality of life issues and crime. yes

Appointing a team of representatives from the community to work with the Director of Community Improvement, the Police Department and other government agencies to insure community coordination. yes

Bringing Security Ambassadors into the crime reduction strategic plan and require advanced training to those who patrol downtown areas, so they are active and have the ability to intervene in minor situations that impact public security. yes

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Question 9

Kevin Blackburn

I have researched CitiStat, and I am familiar with performance-based management. From what I understand the effectiveness of these programs, it’s not just about the data, but how city leaders use the data to hit benchmarks for success and departmental goals. I believe assessing the job performance of these managers is crucial to make sure our city government gets things done. Most everyone has access to a phone; dialing 311 removes barriers to citizen engagement. Right now our government is broken –proposals and critical recommendations get shelved and ignored. If CitiStat holds our
politicians more accountable (even me), I would be absolutely for it.

Abel Guillen

Citistat is a program cities have begun to use to hold cities more accountable. It is a leadership strategy that promotes better communication among city officials and staff. Implementing Citistat would allow our city to run more efficiently and effectively.

Dana King

I am familiar with CitiStat but have never worked with the program in any way. To me, this is exactly the kind of system that needs to be implemented in Oakland. It cuts costs, establishes standards, procedures and goals, holds departments accountable and provides service to Oakland residents in a timely fashion. The SeeClickFix model operates similarly in a very small way but without accountability. Leadership from the Mayor’s office is fundamental to the success of something like this and requires the necessary time and support to make it happen. I would support a program of this scope for Oakland. Btw, the Obama Administration is offering pilot project funding for 311 Services for cities.

Andrew Park

Not familiar but intriguing. Will have to do more research. Will call pastor friends in Baltimore.

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Question 10

Kevin Blackburn

In terms of crime reduction, Oakland can learn from Sacramento, California.
According to the Effective Policing and Crime Prevention guide featured in the US Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, in 1992, Sacramento assigned two patrol officers to work exclusively in what was then Sacramento’s most violent area. In an 800 plus unit of low-income housing, gang and narcotics problems plagued the community. During the first 40 days officers made 70 arrests for major narcotics violations. In four years, the police made more than 500 arrests. The city also paid attention to rehabilitating offenders by building partnerships with schools, community groups, and other public and private agencies. Within 3 years of implementing the strategy, robberies decreased by 73 percent, felony assaults dropped by 74 percent, and narcotic calls dipped by 94 percent. Residents also stated feeling more satisfied with their neighborhood in a survey. I would like to learn from this and other case studies as we continue to implement community oriented policing
coupled with counseling and other services to improve the most crime ridden parts of our city

In terms of budget processing, I know that Baltimore has led the way in outcome-based budgeting, and other large metropolitan cities like Los Angeles are following in lockstep. Coupling performance budgeting with open data systems, cities like Los Angeles are revolutionizing city budgeting processes and transparency. We need a short and long term strategic plan to pay for these sorts of initiatives.
Effective street policies like those I laid out in question 5 lead to greater economic development. The better Oakland can do to bring residents and businesses into the city, generating population density and safer neighborhoods, the better off we will be. We need to promote smart growth, specifically transit-oriented development that incorporates market rate and affordable housing. As you increase density, you also improve safety. As a District 2 representative, I will challenge the government to do as well as Oakland is doing.

Abel Guillen

The City of Richmond has been able to reduce its crime rate dramatically –reducing homicides to the lowest in over 30 years. This can be attributed to infusion of young officers, a focus on data-driven resource deployment and an emphasis on building community trust. It’s neighbor, the City of San Pablo has also experienced a drop in crime. They require their police officers to have at least 6 positive interactions with youth before they leave middle school.

Dana King

There are plenty of positive, best practices on all levels being implemented by cities across the nation. Portland has a city wide program that accelerates the planning process to speed development while providing consistent development standards that are effectively communicated and achievable. Los Angeles has seen its police department succeed in reducing crime and building community relationships after exiting a consent decree by making lasting, structural changes in discipline procedures and policy. Regarding budget processes and economic maintenance, The Municipal Research and Service Center (MRSC) has a best practices and data base collection of success stories and contacts as well as studies on innovative subjects conducted by Harvard and various organizations. There is a world of information available at our fingertips that can offer guidance and access to help Oakland better meet the needs of its citizens. As a city council member, I would study and reach out to develop stakeholder/advisor relationships to help Oakland.

Andrew Park

Oakland can learn a lot from Richmond with its Office of Neighborhood Safety, and Progressive Alliance. Regardless of politics, Richmond is unified and moving in a positive direction.

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Question 11

Kevin Blackburn

A. Creation by Charter amendment of a Rainy day fund as recommended by MOBN! and the Budget Advisory Committee (BAC)?
Yes, I support this because we need to maintain a financial reserve should another recession, natural disaster, or other cataclysm shakes our city’s coffers.
B. Annual polling of city residents on their satisfaction with city services? What would you do with that information?
It’s important to be responsive to the people of Oakland. We must listen and address what’s working and what’s failing. With an annual poll of city residents’ satisfaction with city services, I would award the service departments with the highest ratings increased funding and analyze poor performing departments for opportunities for improvement.We can look to the ratings work of JD Power and the value created as an example.
C. Conducting a police resource deployment study to determine the number of officers actually need by OPD and how they should be deployed?
I would focus on the number of police officers needed to cover city needs, including a traffic detail. I believe traffic officers show that a city can allocate police resources appropriately throughout communities, from major to more minor crime and safety roles.
D. Will you support the preparation of a comprehensive public safety plan?
Yes, absolutely. Public safety is not only the police department’s job. As city leaders, we need to work with and support OPD because it’s also our responsibility to make sure everyone in Oakland is safe, especially our kids and loved ones. That means bringing the community together around a real comprehensive plan that makes our streets, our schools and our neighborhoods safe for all.

Abel Guillen

 A. Creation by Charter amendment of a Rainy day fund as recommended by MOBN! and the Budget Advisory Committee (BAC)?

Maybe. Generally, I support this but we would be better off in the long run by paying off more costly debt.

B. Annual polling of city residents on their satisfaction with city services? What would you do with that information?

No. We can get private funding for these efforts. We can use Survey Money or other tools that may not be as costly.

C. Conducting a police resource deployment study to determine the number of officers actually need by OPD and how they should be deployed?

Yes.

D. Will you support the preparation of a comprehensive public safety plan?

Yes. But it would be useless if we don’t have the ability to implement the plan.

Dana King

A. Creation by Charter amendment of a Rainy day fund as recommended by MOBN! and the Budget Advisory Committee (BAC)? YES
B. Annual polling of city residents on their satisfaction with city services? What would you do with that information? IF THE COST IS REASONABLE, I WOULD USE THE INFORMATION TO REQUEST LOGICAL CHANGES.
C. Conducting a police resource deployment study to determine the number of officers actually need by OPD and how they should be deployed? NO, NOT AT THIS TIME, LET’S GET CLOSE TO FULL STAFFING AND MEET THE CURRENT DEPLOYMENT PLAN AND SEE IF IT MAKES A DIFFERENCE. IF THERE IS NO SHIFT, THEN AN ASSESSMENT CAN BE MADE TO TRY Y A NEW DEPLOYMENT.
D. Will you support the preparation of a comprehensive public safety plan? YES.

Andrew Park

Yes. But not now. Oakland needs to make a run at public safety and go “All in.” Oakland needs the flexibility to invest in dynamic programs that are making the city safer, such as Cease-fire. I do agree that it is not fiscally prudent to spend one time revenues for recurring expenditures, but Oakland is in a unique place where we can seize public safety to the point where we not only are safe, but feel safe.

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