Editorial | February 2, 2007 | Pleasanton Weekly | PleasantonWeekly.com |


Pleasanton Weekly

Opinion - February 2, 2007


Spirit of open meetings fades with Oak Grove

We've been criticized loudly, and rightly so, for reporting in a news story last week on plans for the near-600-acre Oak Grove development in the southeast hills ("Parks group OKs Oak Grove homes, public trails," Jan. 26) that members of the Parks and Recreation Commission attended a private meeting of city officials, developers and others in advance of their vote to approve the project. That information came from a former elected official who was at the meeting, who now says that was wrong. No member of the commission was at the meeting nor were commissioners, the media or anyone else in the public invited to attend. However, Joe Jones was there. He's a member of the commission's ad hoc Trails Committee. There have been small meetings before between Kottinger Ranch homeowners who will be most directly affected by the Oak Grove project and Attorney Marty Inderbitzen, who represents the developers Jennifer Lin, Frederic Lin and Kevin Lin and James Tong of Charter Properties. In a recent meeting, for example, the developers agreed to close off access from Hearst Drive to the 497 acres of open space and trails that the Lin family plans to give the city in return for permits to build 51 luxury homes nearby. In fact, it was that decision at this neighborhood meeting that riled others in the community who said it would leave hikers, equestrians and even bird watchers with no viable access to the trails. The plan seemed doomed to defeat by Parks and Rec before it ever reached the Planning Commission, where it is now scheduled for a Feb. 14 public hearing.

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