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'Red carpet' treatment awaits those seeking permits in Pleasanton

Original post made on Jun 22, 2010

Pleasanton has re-opened its building permit center at 200 Old Bernal Ave. following a three-month remodel.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, June 22, 2010, 7:46 AM

Comments (19)

Posted by Doug, a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 22, 2010 at 8:40 am

Hmmm... I guess this begs the question "Did they get permits for the work?"

Posted by sickofit, a resident of Amador Estates
on Jun 22, 2010 at 10:07 am

How much did this cost? What was wrong with the old office? First we have our City Council spending $90,000 for an election that could have easily been held for $15,000. Now they spend who knows how much money building a Taj for the Planning Department. Does anyone watch how much money is being spent here? Both the City Council and the City Manager need to be held responsible...the former for the election waste of money and both for this terrible waste of money rebuilding the entryway of the Planning department during very hard times.

Posted by Happy Daze, a resident of Downtown
on Jun 22, 2010 at 2:28 pm

I'll make a guess from the description in the article that this was $100,000 plus.

Just waiting for the explanation that this was planned and budgeted before the current financial crisis, was paid for with grant money that had to be spent, or TARP money paid for it and the project created a lot of jobs.

Posted by Spike0, a resident of another community
on Jun 22, 2010 at 3:00 pm

Recall that the City Council of Pleasanton recently voted themselves a giant raise in salary...when many Pleasanton citizens were/are taking pay cuts! If everyone suffers pain from the bad current economic conditions, why is the current Council exempt from sharing the pain?

Posted by Nana, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2010 at 8:24 am

What good are permits when a couple of City Council people (you know who they are)do everything in their power to stop the forward motion of any potential project?
Case in point: Staples Ranch and all of the tax revenue (millions) ready to leave Pleasanton because of the games these two play.

Posted by A Builder, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2010 at 8:54 am

A newer more modern building permit department will not change things. It's like a mediocre sports team needing a new stadium so they can play better. You still have the same level of players.
Congratulations on squandering whatever amount of money was spent for this improvement, you have displayed real fiscal responsibility.
It is obvious that nobody in the City Government has ever had to meet a payrol. I am sure glad you don't run my company.

Posted by sickofit, a resident of Amador Estates
on Jun 23, 2010 at 9:25 am

After seeing the picture, I suspect that 100K is conversative. It is time to recall the current city council for having approved this boondoggle. It is time to reprimand Nelson Fiahlo for having recommended it. It is time for the Planning COmmision to be dismissed en mass for having approved it as well. It is time for the Citizens of Pleasanton to take back their governement. No one would run a business this way but we allow the City to squander our resources. Enough!!!

Posted by Brian, a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Jun 23, 2010 at 10:36 am

Love the new design! Confrats to the Planning Department for a job well done!

Posted by Longtime resident, a resident of Country Fair
on Jun 23, 2010 at 12:30 pm

This would be amusing, if it weren't sad. What does a new and expensive building have to do with 'streamlining' the permit process, pray tell? From the stories that abound about potential businesses that eventually walk away because of the cumbersome permit and approval process in Pleasanton, I'm sure people wouldn't care if they had to stand in line at a kiosk, as long as they could do away with all the red tape. Yet another misuse of government funds that adds no value to the process.

Posted by Arroyo, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2010 at 12:41 pm

Another shrine to a bloated bureaucracy trying to regulate every aspect of our lives... Cynical? You bet!

Posted by WOW, a resident of another community
on Jun 23, 2010 at 1:32 pm

Seriously, you all need to look at some of the other cities around here that are still trying to balance their budgets. Pleasanton just passed a two year budget without layoffs, without drastic cuts, and while opening a new permit center. I think as far as managing money goes we are in great shape. As for it being over the top I think you had better come see for yourself that this was at best a modest remodel. I am also sure that the City got a great price for doing the work during these hard times (and possibly created/preserved a few jobs in the process).

Posted by Happy Daze, a resident of Downtown
on Jun 23, 2010 at 4:47 pm

WOW, I knew you would get here eventually.

Posted by sickofit, a resident of Amador Estates
on Jun 23, 2010 at 5:29 pm

Wow - IMHO you are missing the point. That simply does not justify the wastes of money that we are seeing from the Planning Commission, Planning Department, City Council and the City Manager. Had they spent the money to make the planning process more efficient, at least that is an investment. Spending money to make the planning department a Taj doesn't help much. As I said - get rid of the Planning Commission who approved this, the City Council who approved this, reprimand the City Manager and start holding people responsible for the terribly wasteful decisions they are making.

Posted by curious, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2010 at 8:13 pm

sickofit, before you make statements, check your facts!!! The Planning Commission had nothing to do with this--it was part of 40 or more recommendations for a group of citizens looking to make the permit process easier and faster for all involved. If the permitting process is made easier and faster that's a win for everyone including the City because they collect fees etc for the permits. And by the way this could effect every resident who would want to add on, do a major remodel, etc not just developers as you imply!! Make sure you know the complete story before you start critizing unless your motives are political which is what I suspect.

Posted by bizarro sickofit, a resident of Amador Estates
on Jun 23, 2010 at 8:42 pm

Why would I "check my facts" when it's so much easier to just yell and scream about something I have no idea about? Besides, facts and the truth make my head hurt and makes me have to go to the potty.

Posted by sickofit, a resident of Amador Estates
on Jun 23, 2010 at 9:01 pm

I doubt that the recommendation was to turn the Planning Department into a 'Red Carpet' luxery environment. Wonder how much this really did cost. If the Planning Commission or City Council did not approve this, who did. Why didn't they work on improving the process (which was also a recommendation of that group) rather than spending money turning the planning department into something that belongs in Architectural Digest. Perhaps I don't have all the facts but I can see a waste of money just as easily as the next person.

Posted by curious, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 23, 2010 at 11:00 pm

sickofit, I believe the City Council did approve the construction on a 5-0 vote if I'm not mistaken for $40,000 and I believe it came in slightly under budget. They have worked on improving the process and this is part of it. A person/resident will be able to go in and get everything they need in one spot instead of having to go to different departments. Part of the Committee recommendation, I believe was to hire a permit center manager. My understanding with the budget and the current low volume of permits, that position is on hold. Give it a chance before you start shooting at it. The City seems to be watching the dollars as so far they've got by without layoffs and streets, parks, etc seem to be maintained and clean.

Posted by Happy Daze, a resident of Downtown
on Jun 24, 2010 at 8:27 am

$40,000? I doubt it. Come on PW, do a little digging and let us know what this really cost.

Posted by sickofit, a resident of Amador Estates
on Jun 24, 2010 at 11:18 am

You don't expect the Weakly to do real reporting do you? They would have to find the bills from the architects, designers, builders, contractors - not to mention how many hours of city time has been spent on this. No, the Weakly will just stay with the fluff - it is a lot easier.

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