Post general kiteboarding discussion topics here!
I wanted to tell everyone on this NON public forum that the public forum is being read non kiteboarders. ONCE AGAIN, this was made very clear to me today as I discused some launch area stuff with parks personell.
PLEASE GET THE WORD OUT, NOT TO DISCUSS SENSITIVE MATTERS ON THE PUBLIC AIRWAVES.
And this is my response there, hopefully we can maintain the discussion here among, local, relevant parties:
"I agree wholeheartedly. This has done everyone a disservice. The less said about this sensitive local subject in a public forum, the better. The original thread on BayAreaKiteboarding has been moved to a non-public forum for further discussion by interested, local parties."
The use of public funds from Measure CC is more than an Alameda kiters issue. If the EBRPPD can do that here they can do that anywhere in East Bay and that is wrong!
This is not a safety discussion.
All of this will be brought up in a very public hearing in two weeks.
All the issues BCDC, EBRP, City of Alameda, Public beach access, etc. will come out there anyway.
The topic is much more than advocating hot launching one handed with a carabinher while facing the land.
It is a public issue that was placed in a General discussion section becasue it is just that, an issue for general discussion.
You want public comment, perhaps you'll recall I'm all for it! BUT, as I recall you voted to have a non-public forum to start to "constructivly" deal with this kind of stuff. I abstained from voting but am now trying to comply with the majority dissission.
Is this arrest issue not a hot button item? Lesson constrictions can cause of many problems!
The exact police turnout was the polices choice to make. Was it (police turnout) gross over-kill and thus a missapproaction of funding, YES! But was not the root cause Boardsports attempt to controll business in some way? The police are just the messenger, Boardsports sent the message.
Should Boardsports (read that: TOM, the owner) be so detremined to controll business that they ask (read that: ORDERS) all employees to report anyone (read that: EVERYONE) teaching (read that:INSTRUCTING for money or not) any water sport, they shall be commiting (read that:verifies) some form of negilance. Constricting any watersports lesson's general availibility endangers not only the end water users (read that:kiters) but also others (read that:PUBLIC). This policy will cause some people to proceed totally unattended and compleatly unqualified to deal with the known dangers. Drowning is just the beginning...
If Boardsports continues to apply there rights as sole concessionare with a blanket policy, I feel the general population shall have no further choice but be forced to apply pressure to correct there behavoir by any means possable, be it public humilation, picketing or TOTAL BOYCOTT of the offending business or party.
I believe that untell such time that we have expired all means of privite depolomicy to correct this issue we should be cautous to not foment futher complications.
1. The "closed forum" was for safety issues. Remember? We did not want someone who does not understand kiting to read a post and get it totally wrong.
All the police, Boardsport, Jeff discussion is not about safety. Nobody can understand it wrong. And a lot more people than just kiters witnessed the "show" last Saturday. People from the dogpark nearby came over to look and started talking.
This is a public issue and Alameda issue. Why hiding it?
But I would like to mention a few thoughts here in the closed part since they may be a bit too provocative and they are only my thoughts, nothing else.
2. As for what you say above.
It is obvious that Boarsports is going a "straight" forward route without compromise. The mysterious "Tom" does never appear. He pushes the ladies from the shack into the CrossFire and stays invisible behind the scenes. He is not in the sport and does not engage with the sport scene like Jeff does (example downwinders). If you compare both kiteschools - they are orders of magnitude apart in my opinion (I am biased though). with KWS school and shop being the big winner (number of instructors, lesson-quality, equipment, lesson plans, kite competition winners working in the shop etc). No wonder - everyobdy there including the owner LOVES kiteboarding. So - if one shop qualifies for a kite teaching concession it would be KWS.
And that must scare the heck out of "Tom" (and it scares the park for an unkown reason).
But - Boardsports has obviously an unproportional amount of support by the Park. That is worrisome because the Park should be neutral. Protecting it's concessionary is ok. But they need to act with care and from a neutral point - to me they look like puppets of Boardsports.
-The saturday police show off
-the sudden redifintion of Park borders which now extend far into the water of the Bay (wherever Jeff is teaching is suddenly the border).
- They allow an engine powered boat to Boardsports which takes off from the beach for the purpose of kiting lessons (see Don's post and see the Park's webpage where they list which boats are permitted, no powerboats close to the beach.).
- Although I have not seen the paperwork I remember the hopes Jef had 3 years ago that the bidding for the concession would be opened in a year (2003/2004) - but it was not. The contract with boarsports was just extended it seems. No bidding.
To me it looks as if they are bending back and forward to favor Boardsports. And to give Jeff an especially hard time. This is wrong says my feeling for ethics and moral. This is wrong with looking into the interest of the public. The public in Alameda specifically.
A public entity (the Park, funded by the public) should not do that. Period.
No park official has yet posted an explanation or talked to us - the kiter community to explain. Maybe there are good explanations for the above?
The park has the ultimate power to allow or disallow kiting in their territory. They probably think that. They may use that power and our fear to get the discussion back into their favor. This is what I read from your post, did they talk to you? Please corect me if I understood wrong.
But - since they define their territory now not just as "the beach" but also the waterbody (how much of it will be found out in a court hearing soon) - once kiting is not allowed from the beach (for whatever reason), you will not even be able to go out on a boat or jetski to kite in the bay since it is "the Park".
I hope those issues can be resolved a.s.ap. and the right things be done and taken care of. I would prefer to go out kiting, just play and have innocent fun.
I only have a minute but I want to briefly respond and expand on kitechicks comments.
Take a look at this map:
The dark and light green areas are EBRP areas. Have you ever kited any of those spots? Windsurfed? Probably every one along the shoreline. That is, in part, what is going on.
The bar has been risen for Jeff annually. They tell him he can not do something and as a resouceful small business owner he finds a way to circumvent that imposed (I almost used legal but I'm not convinced) restriction. Once they realize that he has found a means to continue to serve the community he loves within the constrictions of EBRP a new letter comes from EBRP's Harvard lawyer filled with innuendo and strongly phrased double speak of a higher bar to jump. Jeff being a resourceful small business owner finds a way around that quagmire of legalese and the bar is raised again, and again and again for three years. If there was a relevant law that gave them dominion over the bay they would have cited it in the first year not the third.
They could not even figure out what to book him for at the county jail.
If you are a DUI they know what section of law applies. If you drive to fast or park illegally it is clear in the eye of the law code and section what you did wrong.
It is not clear here.
Clearly Boardsports is being protected by EBRP -and the why goes beyond merely supporting a concessioner - which is befitting a contractual arrangement. However contracts expire and concessions with public agencies come up for open bid but not here. Why? Someone on high authorized that display of force on Saturday. That person is zealously protecting Boardsports to an extent that does not befit a public servant. Why? it was no accident that the squash that pesky Jeff display occured. Displays of that magnitude are not appproved by the sergeant on duty that day.
If they had sent one officer the money they saved on that two hour fiasco might have afforded them a boat and a handheld VHF radio.
And then there was the plea for funds last year via measure CC.
Somehow when you follow the trail in incidents like this you end up sniffing out power or money or collusion. Actions from yesterday speak volumes when placed next to today's silence from Boardsports and EBRP.