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Keeping Up With City Government - April 2024

by Liz Hartka, LWVO Observer Corps Coordinator

Recently, the U.S. celebrated National Sunshine Week. This is an annual salute to our right, as citizens, to access public records and to enjoy freedom of information. Included in the Sunshine act is the right to view public meetings, which is our focus in the Observer Corps. We attend meetings and report on the activities of Oakland’s committees and commissions that are relevant to Oakland League of Women Voters interests. It’s a great opportunity to see the machinery of democracy in action and to learn how government works, from the inside out.

Here are updates from our Observer Corps volunteers:

recommended changes to the City Charter and Municipal Code to

include responsibility for the administration of the Democracy Dollars program and

a prohibition against reducing the number of Democracy Dollars staff. PEC is in the

process of hiring staff for the program.

  • The City is currently facing a $177 million deficit in Fiscal Year 2024-

25 Midcycle Budget. The Finance & Management Committee meetings in the past

month have focused on monitoring the budget deficit and developing strategies to

close the gap.

(SSOC) is focusing on developing an oversight body for MACRO as well as

supporting the Oakland Community Violence Reduction and Emergency Response

Act of 2024, which is basically a renewal of Measure Z. The SSOC was created to

oversee the implementation of Measure Z and will disband at the end of 2024 when

the measure sunsets. Public comment at the April 22 meeting was generally in favor

of the Measure Z renewal, although there were some questions about how the measure

was created and with its proposed implementation.


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