Support local news in Alameda. Give Now!

Letters to the Editor for February 23, 2024

Alameda Post - Letters to the Editor

Community support for Measure E

To the Editor:

As an educator and long-time Alamedan, I am writing to encourage our community to vote Yes on Measure E to renew AUSD’s parcel tax funding.

I was a teacher in Oakland for many years, and have personally seen the terrible impact of underfunded schools, not just on children and families, but on entire communities. For over a decade, Alameda schools—and Alameda as a whole—have avoided these negative consequences through our local parcel taxes. This revenue supports academic programs, teacher salaries, career and college counseling, athletics, art programs, school libraries, and much more. This means that Alameda schools have remained strong and vibrant, even with major state funding issues.

Measure E will protect these vital programs by renewing local funding for them—and best of all, it will do so without increasing tax rates. Please vote Yes on Measure E to maintain our schools and our strong community.



Bronwyn Harris,
Educator, author, and Alameda resident

 

To the Editor:

I am writing as an Alameda resident, parent, and homeowner. I am writing to encourage everyone to vote Yes on Measure E.

Alameda’s public schools are one of the key reasons Alameda is a thriving, lovely, and highly desirable town to live in. My family moved here, and stays here, because of the excellent school system.

Measure E will not raise your property taxes. Measure E only continues the previously voted on and passed parcel taxes that directly fund our great schools. The funding from Measure E is crucial to ensuring Alameda’s school district can continue to provide a broad range of classes and support systems for all of our children.

I strongly implore you to vote Yes on Measure E even if you don’t have children in the public school system. As Alameda community members, we are all better off, the more robust our public school system is.

Nicole Loeffler-Siu,
Alameda

 

To the Editor:

We are grandparents of two elementary school age children in the Alameda Unified School District. While we are happy about our grandchildren’s education in general, we can’t help but notice that the U.S. education system does not score high in international ranking, and that California education funding is below national average, according to EdSource.org/2023 (Funding Level D, Funding Effort F, with a better ranking for Funding Equity B).

While Measure E provides a slight increase in the parcel tax, it generates $24 million to improve essential education services in our public schools without increasing our property taxes. On this Presidents Day week, it seems fitting to quote Washington’s warning against “ungenerously throwing upon posterity the burden which we ourselves ought to bear.”

Vote Yes on E.

Anita and Wilfred Siu
Alameda residents


LWVA falls short of placing ranked choice voting on November ballot, but will keep trying

To the Editor:

The League of Women Voters believes that the right to vote is the foundation of democracy. We support electoral systems which encourage voter engagement, promote sincere voting over strategic voting, and require the winner to receive a majority of the votes cast. We support election by majority vote because the need to appeal to a wide spectrum of voters favors candidates whose positions are less extreme and who are inclined to work with other electees to craft compromises that are essential for good government and are more representative of the entire electorate.

The Alameda League embarked on an educational and signature gathering effort to place ranked choice voting on the November 2024 ballot because our current system in Alameda does not require that candidates receive a majority of votes to win.  Ranked choice voting is a method of ensuring majority support by allowing voters to rank candidates in order of preference. If one candidate receives the majority of first-choice votes, that candidate is elected. If not, the candidate who receives the fewest votes is dropped from the race. For these ballots, the voter’s second choice is used and the votes are retabulated, continuing until a candidate receives a majority. Ranked choice voting saves the expense of conducting multiple elections; it is essentially an instant runoff.

Our effort was conducted solely by volunteers. We found widespread support across the city as we gathered thousands of verified signatures, and we are heartened that there is now a greater understanding of the voting method that will stand us in good stead when this reform is eventually placed before the voters of Alameda. However, we fell short on the volunteer hours to obtain enough signatures to qualify for the November ballot. We will continue our efforts to educate voters. We continue to believe that Alameda voters should decide this issue, and the League will not give up. After all, look how long it took women to get the right to vote!

Ranked choice voting is a growing trend around the country. While no election system can ensure good governance, we believe that ranked choice voting can contribute towards that goal.

Visit our website for more information and join the effort by contacting the League of Women Voters of Alameda at [email protected].

Anna Crane
President, League of Women Voters of Alameda


Editorials and Letters to the Editor

All opinions expressed on this page are the author's alone and do not reflect those of the Alameda Post, nor does our organization endorse any views the author may present. Our objective as an independent news source is to fully reflect our community's varied opinions without giving preference to a particular viewpoint.

If you disagree with an opinion that we have published, please submit a rebuttal or differing opinion in a letter to the Editor for publication. Review our policies page for more information.


KQED Curated Content
Thanks for reading the

Nonprofit news isn’t free.

Will you take a moment to support Alameda’s only local news source?
Thanks for reading the

Nonprofit news isn’t free.

Will you take a moment to support Alameda’s only local news source?