Nov 7 2019

I am so thrilled to report that the Piedmont Community passed both Measures G and H.

Your continued commitment to a robust public education is incredible! I want to thank the countless parent, staff, and student volunteers for all of their support and civic engagement over the past few months. It was encouraging to be a part of a community-wide conversation about our schools and how we support teaching and learning.

I fully recognize and am grateful for the commitment that families have made in our school system. I will continue to work closely with the Board of Education, teachers, staff, families, and students to ensure that Piedmont’s schools not only continue to provide excellence in education, but that we also continue to grow and improve in how we educate students.

Please join me in also thanking and acknowledging the election staff from the City of Piedmont. Their efforts ensured a smooth election day!

On behalf of all of the teachers, support staff, and administrators, thank you for your support and engagement with our incredible district.

Sincerely,

Randall Booker, Superintendent of Piedmont Unified School District

1 Comment »
Nov 5 2019

Piedmont voters cast their votes on Measures G and H at the November 5, 2019 Special Election for the Piedmont Unified School District parcel taxes.  Both Measures G and H readily received the required 2/3 rds (66 2/3%) approval by those voting continuing the Piedmont tradition of strong local support for Piedmont schools. Approval for the measures was:

82.69% for Measure G  

74.34% for Measure H

Measure G is essentially a continuation of the existing parcel tax of $2,763 per year per parcel with a likely 2% increase each year over the eight year term of the measure.

Measure H is a new and additional flat tax based on the habitable space on each parcel in Piedmont taxed at 25 cents per square foot of improved habitable space on a parcel during the eight year term of the measure.

Community volunteers supporting the measures, primarily  parents of students, made an all out effort to personally contact each Piedmont voter, in addition to sending several glossy mailers to all voting households explaining the reasons to support the measures for the schools. Lawn signs for G & H were placed throughout the city. 

No opposition was officially filed against the measures, although opposition was explained through various media sources, including editorial disapproval by some regional newspapers emphasizing funding disparities with other school districts. 

Concern was also expressed over the demands placed on taxpayers, particularly seniors, and the fact that the parcel taxes under new federal tax laws were unlikely to be tax deductible. 

Voting results based on those voting:

 YES   3,416   82.69%    NO   715   17.31 %

H   YES   3,059  74.34%     NO  1,056  25.66%

There are 8,647 voters in Piedmont, of which 7,066 are permanent vote by mail voters, or 81.7 % of the Piedmont voters. Over 4,000 Piedmont voters cast their ballots on November 5, 2019 making the turnout by voters close to 50%.  A small number of provisional ballots are yet to be counted.  Updated 11/8/19

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UPDATE: NOVEMBER 8, 2019 – The following percentage of  Piedmont voters is incorrect, as reported by the Alameda County Registrar of Voters. For no known reasons, the Registrar combined voters in Dublin with those in Piedmont, therefore disregard the following data.

Alameda County Registrar of Voters Reported:

Total Voter Registration per Alameda County Registrar of Voters: 13,259 [Incorrect, as this reports Piedmont and Dublin voters. ]

      Turnout     Percentage

Vote by Mail Reporting Ballots Cast

      4,324

      32.61 %

Election Day Reporting Ballots Cast

          477

        3.60 %

Total Ballots Cast

      4,801

      36.21%

2 Comments »
Nov 2 2019

The League Offers Arguments in Support of Ballot Measures G and H.

The League of Women Voters Piedmont has prepared a Pros and Cons for Piedmont voters regarding Measures G and H here.  After engaging in a discussion regarding Measures G and H, the Board voted to support these measures which align with the League’s policy to support a high level of education in the Piedmont Schools.

Measure G would continue financial support for District programs for students in Piedmont schools. The measure, with a new eight (8) year term, intends to provide the District and its taxpayers both stability and predictability in base parcel tax support. The proposed parcel tax will replace the local funding approved by the voters of the District on March 5, 2013, as Measure A, which will otherwise expire as of July 1, 2021. This Measure will provide continuing local revenue that cannot be taken by the State and will fund programs in math, science, technology, engineering, English, music, and arts, keep textbooks and instructional technology up to date, maintain smaller class sizes, and attract and retain qualified teachers (“Measure G Programs”).

Measure H would authorize the District to impose a special parcel tax with a rate of $0.25 per square foot of building improvements per year, to be levied against each taxable parcel of land located wholly or partially within the boundaries of the District. The Special Tax would have a term of eight (8) years, commencing on July 1, 2020, and ending on June 30, 2028, to be collected by the Alameda County Tax Collector, as applicable based on parcel location, at the same time, in the same manner, and subject to the same penalties as general property taxes collected by said tax collector.

Editors Note: Opinions expressed are those of the Piedmont League of Women Voters Board of Directors. Publicly noted Board members are President Nancy Beninati, Piedmont Resident, Vice President Lorrel Plimier, Oakland Resident, and Membership Chair Linda McClain, Oakland Resident.

PCA does not support or oppose ballot measures.

Oct 29 2019

ADVISORY: PG&E cancelled its planned Public Safety Power Shutoff for Piedmont. At this point, PG&E indicated that it has no additional PSPS events planned for Alameda County in the near term. Water pumping problems will no longer be potentially affecting Piedmont.

PG&E informs the City that all customers affected by the Public Safety Power Shutoff in Piedmont have been restored. If your power is still out, please contact PG&E at (800) 743-5000.  10/30/19

______________________________Updated 10/30/19

 

Oct 28 2019

Measure G, essentially a renewal of the existing parcel tax, is based on $2,763 annual tax per parcel that can be increased by 2% every year during its 8 year term  by the Piedmont Board of Education.

Measure H is a new, additional annual fixed rate school parcel tax of 25 cents for each habitable square foot of building space on each parcel.

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Piedmont voters can cast their absentee ballots free with the US Postal Service or drop their ballots in the ballot box on Highland Way next to the Wells Fargo Bank in central Piedmont OR follow the instructions on their Voter Information Guide for specific instructions on where to vote in person.

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Questions have arisen regarding the cost of the Special Election for the Piedmont School Parcel Tax.  The cost of running the election according to Superintendent of Schools Randall Booker is expected to be approximately $125,000. 

Questions have also arisen regarding why the School District is seeking renewal of the existing parcel tax at special expense when the current tax does not expire until June 2021.  It has been explained as an attempt to determine in a timely manner how much money the District will have to fund the education program. 

The deductibility of the school parcel taxes from Federal Income Taxes is unlikely if other taxes combined will exceed $10,000. Seek advice from tax preparers. 

Details of the School Board’s many reasons for asking Piedmonters to approve Measures G and H are in the Voter Information Guide provided to every Piedmont voter.

Don’t forget to vote – Tuesday, November 5, 2019!

READ Prior PCA article:  >HERE

Editors Note: PCA does not support or oppose ballot measures.
1 Comment »
Oct 28 2019

Dear Editor,

I’m writing to express my strong support for Measures G&H. As a realtor and a grandmother of children attending the Piedmont schools, I understand the importance of our Piedmont schools on many levels.

Every day, I work with families who want to buy homes in Piedmont because they know that our community offers a great education for their children. The strength of our schools directly affects the value of Piedmont homes.

I am proud to live in a community that values education, and I’m thrilled that my grandchildren attend the Piedmont schools. I know that they are receiving an outstanding education that includes small class sizes and access to art classes, libraries, current technology, and eventually AP classes and a range of electives. This breadth of programming exists because Piedmont has consistently passed school parcel taxes for over 30 years, helping to address the lack of state funding for education. In addition to preserving our educational program, we also need to support the teachers who work hard every day to teach our students. Measures G&H will allow us to preserve our educational programs and properly compensate Piedmont teachers.

All of the money raised by our school parcel taxes stays here in Piedmont. Even if you don’t have children who attend the Piedmont schools, Measures G&H are a wise investment because they help protect and improve our property values. The Piedmont schools have been the centerpiece of our community for decades. I encourage Piedmont residents to join me in voting Yes on Measures G&H in order to keep our schools strong.

Sincerely,

Anian Pettit Tunney, Piedmont Resident

Broker Associate , The Grubb Co.

Editors Note: Opinions expressed are those of the author.
Oct 27 2019

ADVISORY: Power remains off in portions of Piedmont due to PSPS.

PG&E has said that, assuming weather goes as forecast, restoration efforts will begin tomorrow morning, Monday 10/28. PG&E must visually inspect all of their lines before they are re-energized, so it could take up to 48 hours to complete the work.

Due to the winds, high fire danger remains a threat, so outdoor flames and fires in fireplaces are strongly discouraged. The winds are predicted to subside overnight, but freshen again Tuesday morning, so please remain vigilant and call 911 if you see any fire.

Oct 26 2019

Parts of Piedmont To Be Affected Delayed

ADVISORY: PG&E will be operating two Community Resource Centers near Piedmont for residents to charge phones, cool off, and ask questions of PG&E employees.  There will be one in Oakland at Merritt College at 12500 Campus Drive.  The other will be in Berkeley at the UC Berkeley Clark Kerr Southwest Parking Lot 1 on Tanglewood Road.

These PG&E Community Resource Centers will be open from 8AM to 6PM or later.

Pacific Gas and Electric Company has confirmed their intent to conduct a Public Safety
Power Shutoff (PSPS) which will include portions of Piedmont as early as Saturday,
October 26th delayed until  7:00 p.m. Other power outages are likely to occur as a result of this wind event.

(As of  3:20 p.m. 10/26/19)

All Piedmonters are advised to be prepared for power outages during this wind event and Red Flag Warning, which may or may not be proactive Public Safety Power Shutoffs.
Based upon information provided by PG&E it appears that many areas in Piedmont will be affected by the PSPS.

ADVISORY: PG&E has advised the City of Piedmont that there is a power outage in Piedmont and Montclair affecting approximately 2600 customers. We do not believe it is related to the Public Safety Power Shutoff, scheduled for later tonight.

READ CITY NOTICES BY CLICKING BELOW:

>2019-10-26 Public Safety Power Shutoff #1

 

>PCA 2019-10-26 Red Flag Fire Warning

Oct 26 2019

You can check to read the latest updated shut off information for your address by clicking below:

Check shut off information for your address > HERE. <

Oct 26 2019

AC Alert Emergency Notifications from City of Piedmont

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The City of Piedmont will use “AC Alert” powered by Everbridge to make sure you know about issues that may affect your safety. This system allows the City to contact thousands of residents in seconds so you can find out about an emergency right away.

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The success of this service relies on YOUHaving your latest contact information is the only way to ensure that we can contact you in an emergency.

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Thank you in advance for your cooperation and participation in this important program!

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