Robert Bobb is Back

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Robert Bobb, the Oakland city administrator who brought a new level of professionalism to City Hall, but was fired by Jerry Brown after one too many fights over the Oakland A's, has been hired by Ron Dellums to whip city government into shape. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Bobb has a $150,000 contract to "review staffing and budgets" in different city departments, improvement information flow, and increase accountability. We're not sure what all that means, but it certainly sounds good; Bobb dedicated himself to improving city services and wasn't afraid to fire people who screwed up. In addition, Bobb will coordinate the national search for a new, permanent city administrator. Meanwhile, the City Council unanimously approved a new whistleblower protection law, the first plank in a series of reforms proposed by the city attorney and auditor. After a depressing 18-month period of torpor from Dellums, culminating in the disgraceful Edgerlygate scandal, it finally feels like Oakland's leaders are trying to do something. On the other hands, they might just be trying to give the impression that they're on the ball so angry voters will approve a new series of parcel taxes this November.

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