Mixed reaction from city council on new Oakland A’s stadium legislation

Bay Area

OAKLAND (KRON) — East Oakland Stadium Alliance was at the Oakland City Hall rallying against two pending bills in the state legislature that they say will fast-track approval and public financing for the Oakland A’s new stadium proposal which includes mixed-use development at the Howard Terminal site

“What they are proposing here today is to constrict the port of Oakland,” said Clarence Thomas with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union.

The Port of Oakland is the third-busiest port in the state.

The Longshoreman’s Union wants to keep it that way, saying a ballpark doesn’t belong at the port.

“Ballparks, skyboxes, condominiums don’t belong here. The first thing that people are going to say when they move in here, there is a nuisance here, the noise, the lights, the pollution, which puts pressure on other shippers and stevedoring companies to leave,” he said.

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf is officially on board with the A’s new stadium proposal.

“This is the first time that you have ever seen all of us up here together, so please just note that,” she said.

However the mayor’s colleagues on the city council have mixed views on the subject.

“I am committed to making sure one of our sports franchises stays in Oakland. The only one that has said ‘yes, we want to stay,’ are the Oakland A’s,” said Councilman Larry Reid, who supports the Howard Terminal Proposal.

Councilmember Noel Gallo would prefer the new stadium be built at the Coliseum site.

“For me, what is the return because I haven’t received clear financial numbers?” Gallo said. “I can talk about the emotion and the spirit but I need to see what the cost is.”

Councilmember Dan Kalb remains undecided on the proposal.

“Are they going to be asking us to spend a hundred-million dollars in public money to help with their private development? That’s a head scratcher for me. Right now I am neutral on the project,” he said.

On Wednesday, a public hearing is being held by the city council to learn more of the facts behind the two assembly bills.

A more thorough informational briefing will be held in July.

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