Mif Albright golf course
Proponents of a measure that would prohibit city leaders from selling or trading parkland without voter approval turned in more that 10,000 signatures to Alameda’s city clerk on Thursday, with the city acknowledging about 50 percent more signatures than they will need to qualify for the ballot.
Leaders of the Protect Our Alameda Parks told City Clerk Lara Weisiger in a letter accompanying the signatures that they’ve turned in their signatures with enough time to qualify for the November 2012 ballot. Weisiger acknowledged receipt of 9,372 signatures Thursday and is passing the petitions to county elections officials to be checked.
“People love the parks in Alameda,” longtime local activist Gretchen Lipow said. But the City Council’s recent consideration of a deal to trade the Mif Albright golf course to a developer for cash and vacant land led Lipow and others to believe the city’s parks could be in jeopardy.
So they’re asking local voters to consider putting a measure on the ballot that would eliminate the council’s ability to okay similar deals in the future, putting those proposals to a public vote instead.
A proposal to swap the Mif Albright golf course to developer Ron Cowan for cash and land he owns on North Loop Road would need to earn four votes from the City Council to pass, according to a legal opinion released by the council Tuesday night. But a second of the council’s five members is now saying it’s “not likely” she will vote for the swap plan.
Councilwoman Lena Tam told opponents of the plan who packed City Hall on Tuesday that the council’s earlier request for alternatives to the swap suggest it is “not going to happen.” Councilman Doug deHaan has long said he opposes the swap proposal.