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Kudos to Ann Marie Gallant for Precluding WABA From Using City Funds for WABA Salaries

At Tuesday’s Special Joint Meeting of the City Council, Alameda Reuse and Redevelopment Authority (ARRA) and Community Improvement Commission (CIC), Interim City Manager Ann Marie Gallant introduced a recommendation, approved by Alameda City Council, that would restrict the use of City grant funds to the West Alameda Business Association (WABA) to marketing and advertising, and prohibit the use of those funds for WABA employee salaries.

The language in the recommendation reads:

WABA will be paid quarterly in arrears based upon requests fully substantiated by receipts for eligible activities. As proposed in the attached budget, the City grant will be spent on non-salary activities. Finally, new to the contract is language that specifically prohibits use of grant funds for employee or contractor salaries, lobbying activities, or to support litigation activities against the CIC, its employees , officials, and boards and

(Emphasis added.)

This new prohibition is important, because otherwise, it effectively makes employees of WABA employees of the City of Alameda, leaving the City open to lawsuits that might result from eruptions and mis-steps like those of WABA Executive Director Kathy Moehring.

The grant money comes from the Community Improvement Commission, whose day-to-day activities is overseen by City staffer Leslie Little. Grant funds for various Alameda business associations for the upcoming year total over $250,000.

Now, if only Ms. Little could come up with $300 for an annual FLICKS membership for the Film Commission to facilitate TV and film production in Alameda.

1 comment to Kudos to Ann Marie Gallant for Precluding WABA From Using City Funds for WABA Salaries

  • barb

    Maybe we can hold a fundraiser for the FLICKS membership. Or take it from the Finance Director’s professional association fees, or the City Attorneys’ bar dues or City Attorneys’ association fees or the City Managers’ Association Fees. Or the ABAG or dozen or so other association fees to which the City belongs and gets very little in measureable results. Just feel good kind of membership.

    Anyway back to the points, I agree that Gallant deserves Kudos for the courage to just say no. Now instead of artificially supported business associations for groups of merchants, they will have to do what the rest of us do, earn it or do without. And everyone owes a big Thank-you to Kathy Moehring for triggering this scrutiny and result. It was inappropriate for her as Ex. Director of WABA to be leading the fray against the citizens and for SUNCAL. She is responsible for creating this devisive and horrible battle over SUNCAL’s initiative that the City, citizens, and even SUNCAL are going to spend hundreds of thousands of hours, and dollars fighting over. No matter which way it turns out, it might not have happened had she not been front person for SUNCAL in signing the Initiative. Think of all the better things the City and its residents could be spending time and money on at this time of economic crisis.