Why Pay for a Port Boondoggle?

That boondoggle is the Domain Awareness Center System - the DAC.

  • We don’t want it. 
  • We don’t need it. 
  • The Port refuses to allocate money for it. 
  • We shouldn’t have to pay for it. 
  • We need to protect privacy, not degrade it. 

In March of 2014 Oakland's City Council restricted the DAC - a surveillance system to be installed at Oakland's Emergency Operations Center, to just the Port of Oakland. A grant obtained by the Port from the Dept. of Homeland Security was intended to fund the operating costs. The Council also insisted that a privacy policy be put in place before the DAC became operational.

Oakland's Ad Hoc Privacy Committee worked from April through December creating arguably the best, most robust privacy policy in the US, along with other privacy protections. But in Dec. 2014 the Port of Oakland voted to reallocate the grant money to itself, leaving city taxpayers like you on the hook.

On Feb. 10th the privacy committee presented both the new privacy policy and other recommendations to the Public Safety Committee. Council members approved "in principle" the committee's suggestions, and City Council members expressed their thoughts on the Port's action. Councilperson Dan Kalb called the Port's action defunding the DAC "shameful." We agree.

But it’s more than just shameful; it's outrageous. Outrageous that the City Council could still be considering funding the DAC out of Oakland's own monies - when those funds could be better used to keep libraries open, repair potholes, fund youth programs and many other services that Oakland residents would like to see. Oakland has a balanced budget requirement, which means that the multi-million dollar DAC operating costs must be taken from other revenues. The fact is that almost no one in Oakland cares about or wants to see the DAC operational, and no one wants to pay for it when we have an estimated $20 million budget deficit with no tangible benefit to the city in activating the DAC.

If there's a road near you that needs repair, trash on the street that isn't being picked up, kids with no after-school programs, libraries suffering from reduced hours and staffing - or any other services you might want the City to provide - you need to speak up!

Call or email your City Council representatives today and tell them:
, no money we don't have for a surveillance system we don't want. Defund the DAC! 
Yes, pass the privacy policy and the committee's other recommendations, which they worked long and hard on, and which cover existing and future surveillance systems, ensuring our privacy rights. 
To get involved send an email inquiry to: oaklandprivacy@gmail.com

An FAQ on the history of the Domain Awareness Center: 
Background on recent DAC events via Electronic Frontier Foundation: 

Please send a comment to the Oakland City Council on the Privacy Policy:

Watch former Oakland City Council member Wilson Riles explain the trap of grant and expectations funding: 

YOUR CITY COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES: If you live in Oakland you have an At-Large representative (Rebecca Kaplan) and a district representative. 

District 1:  Dan Kalb (510) 238-7001 dkalb@oaklandnet.com 
District 2: Abel Guillen (510) 238-7002 aguillen@oaklandnet.com
District 3: Lynette Gibson McElhaney (510) 238-7003 lmcelhaney@oaklandnet.com 
District 4: Annie Campbell-Washington (510) 238-7004 acampbell-washington@Oaklandnet.com
District 5: Noel Gallo (510) 238-7005 ngallo@oaklandnet.com 
District 6: Desley Brooks (510) 238-7006 dbrooks@oaklandnet.com 
District 7: Larry Reid (510) 238-7007 lreid@oaklandnet.com 
At-Large: Rebecca Kaplan (510) 238-7008 atlarge@oaklandnet.com
To find your district enter your address here.