Less than 24 hours after Hayward Mayor Michael Sweeney announced he would not seek re-election, City Councilman Mark Salinas jumped in next year's race for the mayoral post.
He joins fellow Councilman Francisco Zermeno, who announced in May that he was running for mayor. Unlike Zermeno, who is not up for re-election until 2016, Salinas will have to give up his council spot to seek the mayor's job.
The announcement by Salinas, 43, was expected. He had said earlier that he was interested in running for mayor, but only if Sweeney decided to retire.
Sweeney, who is serving his second consecutive stint as mayor, announced Wednesday that he was leaving public office next year at the end of his term, ending almost 30 years of public service. He was first elected to the Hayward City Council in 1982, and served as mayor from 1990 to 1994 before being elected to the state Assembly for two terms.
"I want to thank Mayor Sweeney for his many years of service to Hayward," Salinas said in a statement.
Salinas was born and raised in Hayward, where he attended local schools. One of the things he said would do as mayor is collaborate with education leaders to make Hayward a premier education city.
"Hayward needs a mayor who represents what Hayward is today and who represents what Hayward can be in the future," he said.
Salinas and Zermeno, 63, are both college instructors. Salinas also is director of the Kids' Breakfast Club.
Oakland BART station could change names
The thriving Uptown District already has lots of bars, restaurants and art galleries, and soon it could have its name on the district's BART station. Councilwoman Lynette Gibson McElhaney is asking her colleagues next month to support changing the name of the "19th Street/Oakland" BART Station to the "19th Street/Oakland Uptown."
McElhaney said stamping "Uptown" on BART maps will further add to the district's buzz. "Uptown is surely a neighborhood on the rise and one that deserves to be on the map for the increasing number of visitors who flock here," she wrote in a city report.
The proposal will go before the City Council's Finance Committee on Sept. 10. It must be approved by the full council, and BART's board of directors before taking effect.
Former Oakland councilman carjacked
Public officials past and present haven't been immune to Oakland's violent crime problem; the latest victim is former Councilman Danny Wan.
Wan had just parked his car across the street from a Lake Merritt area home about 9 p.m. Aug. 19 when four men approached him, according to a police report.
One of the men had a gun. Wan complied with their demands to hand over his cellphone, wallet and car keys. The men then fled in Wan's 2012 Honda Accord.
Wan, who is now the Port of Oakland's top attorney, declined to comment about the ordeal.
Last year, Councilman Dan Kalb was mugged getting out of his car near his Rockridge home after an evening campaign appearance. Former state senator and Oakland mayoral candidate Don Perata was carjacked in 2007 in the Temescal District. He was driving a Dodge Charger with 22-inch chrome rims.
Quan in Washington for anti-crime funds
Oakland Mayor Jean Quan was in Washington early this week to press for more federal crime-fighting help.
Quan was among 18 mayors who met with President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder on Tuesday. She asked for money to hire more police officers and bolster anti crime programs as well as increased help from federal law enforcement agencies.
Reid won't run for Oakland mayor
Oakland Councilman Larry Reid has decided not to challenge Quan for mayor next year after his 22-year-old daughter asked him not to risk his health by involving himself in what promises to be a grueling campaign.
"She begged and pleaded," Reid said. "She said that job would kill you."
Reid is diabetic and underwent a heart procedure last year.
The intervention came last week, Reid said, as he was helping his daughter move to Hawaii where she is attending college. "She made good sense," he said.