In City Council race, vote for Rood

It is beyond my comprehension why Piedmonters would vote for anyone previously on the City Council to serve again.

The past levels of secrecy, favoritism and absence of reviews resulting in out-of-sight cost overruns is available for all Piedmonters to review. The insult of no consideration for legal costs to us resident taxpayers, lack of concern over engineering issues and all the Moraga sports complex cronies' debt waiver should energize us all to elect someone new and responsible. I support Tim Rood and urge all other Piedmont residents who have watched in shock for decades and decades to research these issues and vote for Tim Rood.

Pat Markovich

Piedmont

LWV Measure A forum not balanced

At the Jan. 9 League of Women Voters forum, Mayor John Chiang was invited to speak about Measure A, the refinance of the pension side fund. Chiang is a proponent, and no one spoke in opposition. The LWV should have either had an opposition speaker or no speakers on this matter.

A critical issue of the side fund refinance was not discussed at the LWV forum. According to the Budget and Advisor Finance Committee's June 3 report, if the side fund is refinanced "without a contract change in the mechanics of the cap, the refinancing of the side fund would save the employees substantial money but actually cost the city more money (page 19)."

Taxpayers should be told that by passing the bond refinance, unless council acts on renegotiating the employee pension sharing, taxpayers will be voting to pay more for pensions. I support the passage of Measure A if City Council will act in a manner that saves taxpayers money.

Rick Schiller

Piedmont

Smith, Ireland right for school board

Piedmonters are very fortunate to have two spectacular candidates running for school board. Amal Smith and Doug Ireland offer a combined total of 20-plus years of hands-on leadership service to Piedmont schools, accentuated by Amal's 24 years in higher education (the last 13 in financial management and operations at UC Office of the President) and Doug's 30-year financial background handling complex products, including municipal bond issues. Piedmont students, families and taxpayers in general will be well served for the next four years.

I'm so proud to proclaim: I dig Doug and I'm All 4 Amal.

Conna McCarthy Craigie

Piedmont

Drop in murder rate offers little comfort

My tear-stained heart will not let me celebrate Oakland's 30 percent drop in homicides because my 19-year-old son told me while I visited him in Aurora, Colo., that stray bullets killed four people he knew last year.

His tale of woe dimmed flickering memories of happier times when we witnessed him and hundreds of children graduate from Skyline High School in 2012. All of them were full of dreams then, and now three of his schoolmates are dead, along with another acquaintance.

I hope that this year more adults teach our children constructive communication skills and the art of win-win, so fewer of our babies kill each other.

Gerald Green

Oakland