19 June 2006

Dellums wins outright

Thankfully, cooler heads prevailed in an election whose winner had a 154-vote margin. Ron Dellums is now Oakland's mayor-elect, and in a press conference at the Oakland City Center Marriott, he continued his message of hope that, unfortunately, lacked much detail. He argued that predecessor Jerry Brown's 10K plan was not enough, and that he wanted to have 100,000 new residents in the downtown area - though he didn't say when. And when I saw that Dellums will create task forces to study a variety of issues, I cringed. For Oakland's sake, I hope Dellums really follows through on his promise to be a galvanizing, uniting force for the city. Talk about public-private partnerships could set off some heated debate, as Oakland residents may not take too kindly to certain types of projects - of which a ballpark and ancillary development may be one. Note: An A's development simply won't be about throwing some land at Lew Wolff. Wolff has set the price that he's willing to pay for land - around 25 cents on the dollar. The question is, "Is this doable in Oakland?"

Dellums' speech apparently contained nothing about the local sports franchises, so it's hard to say where he's leaning. In the end, the A's future in Oakland may well depend upon whether or not Dellums believes Wolff/Fisher want to keep the team there. Hopefully, Dellums will recognize how much pride the team brings to the city, and that the team is worth the mayor-elect trying to "break his pick" to keep the team in Oakland.