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Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

    Transcript of interview with Brian Brokaw

    I don’t work directly for the A’s. I’m working for a coalition called the roots, which is a coalition of
    fans, community members… and others who are supporting the A’s staying in Oakland…
    There’s several hundred people… We have people coming from all over the bay area to
    demonstrate their support for the A’s to start this process of the A’s building a new ballpark in
    downtown Oakland.
    I’m happy to introduce you to several people that I know personally who are from Oakland.
    Q: One concern is that the majority owner of the As, who is a close associate of DeVos and has
    a long history of opposition to public education and now he wants to build a stadium right next
    door to the A’s. Would you comment on that?
    A: I can’t speak to anything related to the secy. of ed….
    Q: We’re not talking about DeVos. We’re talking about John Fisher. He has a long history of
    favoring privatizing public education.
    A: I can’t speak specifically to that because I’m not aware of what you’re referencing. But I will
    say that when the A’s made this announcement, that they plan to engage in a process of
    community engagement, working with the Peralta Board of Trustees and with Laney College,
    faculty, staff, students… that’s exactly what they announced. It’s a process of community
    engagement. So if there are people who have concerns about the way the project could be
    done, we want to hear those concerns and make sure those concerns are addressed. I mean,
    this is the beginning of a multi year process of community engagement, community input that
    will benefit not just Peralta, not just Laney but the community as a whole.
    Q: re Matier and Ross… talked about building not just matter of building a stadium; what it’s
    really a matter of is what can be built around it. I’d like you to comment on what the thinking is,
    especially since John Fisher is a real estate developer,
    A: I think if I’m reading between the lines, I’m reading your question is about what the impact
    would have on the surrounding community, and I think you’re absolutely right. When the A’s
    announced this process, it isn’t just about building a ball park; it’s about building a ball park that
    fits in with the surrounding community. That’s exactly what the process of community
    engagement is for. I understand what you’re trying to ask but you’re misinterpreting what that
    comment that you read in the paper is trying to say.
    Q: Not how it fits in, but what can be built around it. and there was also references to building
    hotels, restaurants, and so on.
    A: If you go back and look at what was announced in Sept. It’s the beginning of a process. And
    you’re absolutely right, it’s not just the ballpark itself; it’s ancillary development and that is
    everything from affordable housing to market rate housing to retail to restaurants. That’s why
    you have so much community that is supportive of this. You’re at a restaurant — La Estrellita –
    that’s been a landmark in Oakland for decades and they’re very excited about what this project
    means for Oakland… That’s why we’re having this long process of community engagement to
    make sure that we hear from the community and the community hears from the team as well.
    Q: The Bd. of Trustees from the Peralta District never heard directly from the A’s themselves
    that that was their decision, to build there. they first read about it in the news. So there was
    never any direct communication with the board of trustees.
    A: That’s not my understanding…. The A’s had long standing conversations with people on the
    board of trustees, with the chancellor, with people at Laney College going back quite some time.

    And that’s been in the public record so I don’t think that’s accurate.
    Q: Can you tell us who on the board of trustees they’ve had long standing conversations with?
    A: No, I can’t comment on particular conversations…. I’m personally not aware of every
    conversation that’s been had, but I know that there have been many conversations with the
    Peralta Board, the A’s and Laney College….
    Q: If you know there have been many conversations, you must know who has been involved.
    A: I know the chancellor has been involved in many conversations, and he’s said as much
    Q: So you’re mentioning the Chancellor. does that include conversations where the A’s made
    clear to him their intention before their public announcement or where they discussed directly
    with him building the stadium on that site?
    A: I can’t because I don’t know.
    Q: So we don’t really know what conversations were held with whom, then.
    A: I don’t have all the answers to all the questions you’re looking for. I personally don’t have all
    the answers to everything.
    Q: No, I expect you to know something

    About the Contributor
    In the fall of 2019, The Laney Tower rebranded as The Citizen and launched a new website. These stories were ported over from the old Laney Tower website, but byline metadata was lost in the port. However, many of these stories credit the authors in the text of the story. Some articles may also suffer from formatting issues. Future archival efforts may fix these issues.  
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