It suddenly seems as though the playing field for Oakland's next mayor is flooded with a plethora of candidates, all claiming to have the answer to the city’s woes. 

On June 10, from 6 to 9 p.m., the First Mayoral Forum will be held at First Unitarian Church, 685 14th St. in downtown Oakland, giving the community a chance to see who the players are. 

All of the candidates will meet for an open dialogue in hopes of letting the public know about the issues that are important to each of them and where they stand on hot-button topics like the budget, economic development, education and crime and public safety.

This may prove to be one of the most interesting races to watch in 2010. As such, it is important that everyone know as much about each of the contenders vying for City Hall’s top spot. Confirmed to attend are the big three: Former state Sen. Don Perata and Councilwomen Jean Quan and Rebecca Kaplan. Joining them will be Terence Candell, Greg Harland, Orlando Johnson and Don MacLeay.

Each of these movers and shakers are of the opinion that it is time to thank Mayor Ron Dellums for his many years of service in public office, but it is time for new energy and fresh ideas.

Major changes are on the horizon for the citizens of Oakland. Two hundred police officers – cut from the ranks and off the streets. Gang prevention, gang injunctions and cuts in youth services have residents more than concerned about what will happen next. 

This event is being sponsored by 100 Black Men of the Bay Area, and Black Women Organized for Political Action, none of who are publicly endorsing a particular mayoral candidate. It is evident, however, that the community wants immediate answers and some immediate action to come forth.

This is a free, public event and all interested Oaklanders are strongly encouraged to attend.

If You Go

What: Oakland’s 2010 First Mayoral Forum
When: 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, June 10
Where:  First Unitarian Church, 885 14th St. in Oakland


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