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Stoneridge Drive: Same Old Two Obstructionist Council Members

Original post made by frank on Feb 24, 2009

Watching the Special Council meeting regarding the Staples Ranch and Stoneridge Road extension tonight, the two obstructionist and feet-stuck-in-the-mud council members are behaving true to form.

Instead of representing the larger population of Pleasanton, these two, who constitute 2/5-ths of the representation for the 65,000+ citizens of Pleasanton, always come down on the side of some small neighborhood who does not want something that was long ago planned in there backyard. The hell with the rest of us who live in Pleasanton!!!

To make it short. McGovern=minutae issues just to be obstructionist. Sullivan=whatever issues he can grab onto to be obstructionist.

The world moves on, the need for the extension increases as each year passes, the world changes around these two, but their brains are still back THREE years ago with the situation as it existed then. Why did you vote for these two?

Comments (29)

Posted by frank, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Feb 24, 2009 at 11:44 pm

As I watch this tonight Sullivan is now upset and is accusing other members of council as having come with their minds made up. YET IT IS CLEAR HE CAME TO THE MEETING WITH HIS MIND MADE UP!! What a work!

Now as I write this he is talking about litigation on this. He claims 1/2 the town wants Stoneridge Drive and 1/2 does not want it. Where did he get this poll? But he goes on to suggest litigation in the sense that he seems to be encouraging it. Is he inviting litigation? Who is going to litigate? Sierra Club? The nimby neighborhood?

Now he babbles because he realized he lost tonight.

Posted by frank, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Feb 24, 2009 at 11:54 pm

Now McGovern has her turn.... Disappointment in the way the vote has gone but no new ideas nor solutions for the bigger issues that have been raised that supercede the minutiae she raised earlier.

In conclusion, Sullivan's attempt to put the extension to a citizen's vote was denied by vote of council. End of meeting.

Posted by Ann, a resident of Val Vista
on Feb 25, 2009 at 1:07 am

When it was obvious that he would be a minority voter, Matt Sullivan's comments turned to insults directed at his fellow council members and practically begged someone to sue the City.

I went up to him afterward and reminded him that leadership sometimes means you have to make decisions not just call for meeting after meeting. He said that he disagrees. I can't believe the arrogance.

Posted by Jerry, a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 25, 2009 at 1:59 am

It was apparent Sullivan came to the meeting determined to go in a different direction but he was also correct in his assumption three of the council members came with pre-determined decisions...

I'm not defending Sullivan but to his credit, unlike the council members that voted for the motion, he didn't read from a prepared statement when speaking against the motion although he did use notes...

This is an example of why many citizen don't wasting time attending political functions such as this believing they will make a difference if they speak. When the three "yes" votes "read" their statements, it was quite apparent they had prepared them in advance...

Another amusing moment came when each of the "yes" votes thanked the community for coming to the council meeting and giving them, the council, their input. Whether pro or con Stoneridge, why waste the time. It was a done deal before the meeting started...

It will be interesting to see where this goes from here.

Posted by Scott Walsh, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Feb 25, 2009 at 7:44 am

Finally! That road should have gone through 20 years ago, before houses were ever built there. That road is needed. And the council finally is doing what they were elected to do, make decisions best for the Whole community, not just a few. I miss the ole' days when former city councils were not afraid of making the tough decisions. They made decisions for the whole community, not a few. If they had been like today's politicians, more worried about getting elected than doing the right thing, then we would not have the nice community we have now. This neighborhood vs. neighborhood type politics has set Pleasanton way back. You can call it whatever you like but today it boils down to "it's all about me."

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 25, 2009 at 8:27 am

The idea of Stoneridge as a leveraging tool with regional partners was brought up at the meeting last night and how, if Pleasanton approves the full extension now, we will have lost that chip. If I recall, it was Mr. Sullivan who pointed this out. What this line of thinking fails to realize is that any bargaining power we had with the Stoneridge Dr. extension disappeared several years ago because of the delay in deciding whether or not to keep it included in the General Plan update. That delay caused our regional partners to see Pleasanton as the obstinate child of the region that continuously needs hand-holding on regional issues instead of as a true partner. Approving the full extension of Stoneridge Dr. now restores confidence in Pleasanton amongst our neighbors.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 25, 2009 at 8:40 am

Perhaps the rest of the Council did Mr. Sullivan a favor by not supporting the motion to put the extension to a vote of the people. He would have lost any illusion he currently has of the true amount of his political capital when a super majority votes for a full extension.

In all the talk last night regarding traffic studies and numbers, the most glaring omission made by most speakers is the fact that there will always be Pleasanton residents who lose out on quality of life because some in Pleasanton want to build a locked gate.

One person spoke about numerous other streets where plans had changed in the past. She named Del Valle Parkway, West Las Positas, Kolln, etc. What her position completely ignores is that those streets have driveways on them. Stoneridge was designed to have no driveways.

Posted by trodes, a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Feb 25, 2009 at 5:01 pm

trodes is a registered user.

Why are we taking county funding and using it anywhere but the school district?

Posted by frank, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Feb 25, 2009 at 9:39 pm

After working with the two feet-in-the-mud-obstructionists for many years now, and with the SDE and the Staples Ranch development in its umpteenth year of consideration, Hostermann-Thorne-CookKallio would need to be nearly brain dead not to have come to meeting with minds made up and to somehow think that Sullivan and McGovern would not do what they ended up doing. Especially after Sullivan's spectacular kill at the last meeting. Both were true to form. Jerry, give us all a break. We are not that dumb to buy your criticism.

Posted by Involved Community Guy, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Feb 25, 2009 at 10:57 pm

Good job to our Mayor and two city council members. After 30 years in Pleasanton I have seen more and more people like McGovern and Sullivan care more about their little neighborhood supporters than the community as a whole. We finally have a project that benefits our children and seniors alike and all these two council members want is to get votes. It took courage to stand up against McGovern and Sullivan's tactics of filling the council chamber with their small neighborhood constituents while the majority of the residents want this good project. Kudos to the majority!

Posted by Jerry, a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 25, 2009 at 11:28 pm


My comments weren't meant to be critical of anyone. I was merely pointing to the fact it was quite obvious minds were made up before the meeting and it was foolish for anyone to think their comments to the council would make a difference, and, how hollow it is for someone to pretend to give weight to others opinion when their decision has already been formulated. If you read it any other way, well, I guess that just shows your - never mind.... It's not worth the effort...

Oh, by the way. If you're looking for criticism, perhaps you should review what you've written in your posts...

Posted by FACT CHECKER, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 26, 2009 at 4:22 pm

Minds have been made up because we have been talking about this for YEARS. Anything new come up in the public comment section? I think Thorne mentioned they had gotten 300 emails on this in the last week. Of course all of the members had some idea, did you see the stack of material they were all carrying?

Public comment does count! It can make a difference when it is thoughtful and based on fact not emotion or temper tantrums. It is a balancing act for sure.

Posted by Petition, a resident of Amador Estates
on Feb 26, 2009 at 7:56 pm

Does anyone know what it would take to have Matt Sullivan removed from office? Is it a petition? What is the legal due process?

Posted by FYI, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 26, 2009 at 10:11 pm

Web Link

Posted by FYI, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 26, 2009 at 10:12 pm

How to recall a council member:

Web Link

Posted by Petition, a resident of Amador Estates
on Feb 27, 2009 at 5:39 am

FYI, that information is very general. Do you have any info specific to Pleasanton with detailing how many signatures are required? Setting up a booth at the farmer's market, and a table at Safeway and Home Depot would probably garner enough signatures in the shortest amount of time.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 27, 2009 at 7:31 am

I believe municipal recalls are governed by State law. So you'll want to look at State election code law on this. The City Clerk or the Alameda County Registrar of Voters might also be able to help walk you through the process.

You might consider canvassing the neighborhoods negatively affected by the traffic currently, like the ones over near Orloff park and even my neighborhood of The Gates. The neighborhoods along Valley Ave west of Santa Rita might go for it too.

Posted by Jerry, a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 27, 2009 at 11:46 am

Uh oh!! Now the "other side" that critized those "mean old clipboard carriers" of "yesterday" may be considering a clipboard drive of their own. This is too funny!!!

Why not ask our city attorney what's needed. He always gives great advise. Just ask around...:)

Oh!! Wait a minute!! Per the Professor, he doesn't give advise to the general public, just the council...

Didn't I hear somewhere he advised them not to approve "Option 3". Oh well, so much for his advise. Maybe next time...:):)

Posted by Billie, a resident of Mohr Park
on Feb 27, 2009 at 1:02 pm

Hey, this thread is great too! Even more people who want to see only those they agree with in our city government. It would really be great if we could kick any resident who doesn't agree with the majority out of town as well. Just think, we could have a town where everyone thinks and acts just like everyone else. Then we could rename our town Stepford.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 27, 2009 at 1:21 pm


Do you know something about "Petition from Amador Estates" that I don't? If you mean to imply by your response that I'm in agreement with recalling Sullivan, I was answering someone's question and I think you're reading too much into it.

Posted by Jerry, a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 27, 2009 at 4:14 pm


Naw, I don't anything about a "Petition from Amador Estates"(I don't even know where "Amador Estates" is located)and I'm not implying anything, although, with talk of setting up a booth and tables at different locations around town, it would appear someone may be considering carrying a clipboard in the near future...

If they do carry a clipboard I hope they have all the correct "whatevers" with them. If not, it could be - "Look out everybody cause here come da judge"(Stole that from the late, great Flip Wilson)...

Small town politics. Ya gotta love it...


Thanks for the chuckle of the day, so far...:)

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 27, 2009 at 4:32 pm


As I wrote in the other thread on this, it's a spectator's sport!

Posted by Perplexed, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 27, 2009 at 6:43 pm

It is great when we have elected officials that don't always agree with each other. Different opinions is what our country is made of but when the ones that were in the minority leave a council meeting so angry or in tears that the entire community is witness to their temper tantrums is a bit over the top. And yes they were already aware that their little cronies had submitted an initiative to the city. Talk about already making up their minds prior to the council meeting which is something the other 3 council members were accused of.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 27, 2009 at 7:08 pm

Perplexed wrote: "so angry or in tears"

OK, so I wasn't the only one who thought McGovern was close to tears during the meeting? I haven't gotten to that part of the video yet to verify if what I heard from the back of the room was truly what I thought it was. And someone on the other thread called that being "astute"?

Posted by iwasthere, a resident of Amador Estates
on Feb 27, 2009 at 7:54 pm

As usual, it sure looked like to me that McGovern was fighting back tears by the end of the meeting. It was noteworthy the slamming around of papers at the diaz as well. I don't understand the dramatics especially considering she had to have known about the initiative filed earlier in the day.

Posted by Out of touch, a resident of Downtown
on Mar 1, 2009 at 3:57 pm

It's embarrasing that Sullivan and McGovern supposedly represent the best interests of Pleasanton. After watching this meeting that notion is a JOKE. Sullivan's position on everything comes down to..... If even one opinion I might not have heard exists, then I need to listen to it. What he fails to realize is that his position dosen't require him to take action based on each and every opinion. What happened to doing things for the benefit of the greater good?

Jerry Pentin would have been a far better voice of reason than either of these characters.

Posted by June, a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Mar 4, 2009 at 10:33 am

Make no mistake. McGovern and Sullivan were well aware before the City Council meeting that a petition to circulate an initiative was going to be filed.

Posted by James, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Mar 9, 2009 at 10:33 am

what stacey and frank and some of the other posters fail to realize is that the rest of us live in neighborhoods, not their gated communities. what makes life easier for them in getting to their favorite shops, day spas and hair stylists, severely impacts the quality of life for the rest of us.

it is the quality, the tranquility of these "little" neighborhoods that make pleasanton the community it is. why is it so important to the franks and staceys of the world that pleasanton be like every other community in the tri-valley?

i would be willing to bet serious money that frank and stacey would howl their lungs out if the same thing were proposed for their neighborhoods.

Posted by Stacey, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Mar 9, 2009 at 12:58 pm

Thanks for the laugh! The only gates around my neighborhood are the street names!

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