SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) — A newly-released KPIX-TV poll finds that while a majority of residents in San Francisco and San Jose think their communities are fairing pretty well, those who live in Oakland have a negative view of the city in which they reside and its leadership.
The poll, conducted for KPIX 5 by the firm SurveyUSA, found 65% of Oakland residents believe their city is headed in the wrong direction and 60% disapprove of the job Jean Quan is doing as mayor.
That view of the city and the mayor is apparently being driven almost entirely by crime, the poll found. In Oakland, 71% of residents said crime is their number one concern — that’s twice as high as in San Jose (where 34% of residents listed crime as their top worry) and five times higher than in San Francisco (where only 12% cited crime as the big concern).
Mayor Quan is clearly aware of concerns about the proliferation of crime in her city; she spent nearly a third of her recent State of the City address talking about public safety and the recent graduation of a police class.
But as Quan noted, “The question is – whether or not we’ll have enough money to continue that in future years.”
Doubts about City Hall’s ability to put more police officers on the streets of Oakland may be one key reason why more than half of Oakland residents polled (53%) said the quality of life in their community was getting worse.
“I think that people are just saying – well, (crime) is part of life in Oakland and you become numb to it,” said longtime Oakland political consultant Larry Tramutola. “Jean (Quan) may be in a very fortunate situation – people would like change but there is no one that is emerging as credible opposition.”
The Bay Area’s two other major cities are enjoying much better outlooks from their residents, based on the KPIX polling data.
San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee enjoys a 61 percent approval rating, and almost 60 percent of residents said the city is heading in the right direction.
The top concern among residents is just being able to stay in San Francisco, with 28% calling the cost of owning a home the biggest problem facing them.
In San Jose, despite some concerns about crime, most residents are still bullish on the region’s largest city — with a majority saying San Jose is heading in the right direction, and approving of Mayor Chuck Reed’s work.
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