Chip Johnson Annoyed about Kids First



Can't argue too much with Chip Johnson's latest column, in which he complains that Oakland's Measure OO, the new requirement to spend $16 million on children's programs, is budgeting at the ballot box and will force the city to cut critical services in order to satisfy the new law. Measure OO was and remains an idiotic notion; ordinary citizens have no idea of the complexity of dealing with a $42 million budget deficit, and the City Council is now stuck with a poorly-thought-through mandate to fund kids' programs, regardless of the pain parks and street-cleaning services will suffer. But Johnson goes a little too far when he blames a lack of leadership for this whole mess. For example, he rips on Mayor Ron Dellums for not pushing the cop parcel tax harder, noting that Dellums went gallivanting down to Florida when he should have been working for the city. That's true enough, but we seem to remember Johnson publicly opposing the cop tax in the first place. If you really wanted the tax after all, Chip, you could've said so.