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Referendum opponents complain to City Council about strong-arm tactics of signature gatherers

'What have we created here? asks former Councilwoman

Opponents of placing a measure on the June ballot to overturn the City Council's approval of a 43-home development in Pleasanton's southeast hills complained vigorously Tuesday night about what they called strong-arm tactics by those seeking signatures to hold the referendum.

"What have we created here?" asked former Councilwoman Kay Ayala after 14 speakers addressed the Tuesday night City Council meeting.

At the meeting, the council heard from residents who said they had been verbally accosted by signature gatherers at street corners, outside supermarkets and even on the Hearst Elementary School campus.

Particularly troubling, speakers said, were paid workers who sought their signatures on the proposed referendum that would stop the plans by Greenbriar Homes to build the house on Lund Ranch, a 194-acre site it owns. As part of the agreement, Greenbriar would donate 177 of those acres to the city as open space, which would be kept free of any future development in perpetuity with hiking trails to be added.

Proponents of the referendum have until 5 p.m. Friday to gain signatures from 10% of the city's registered voters, or 4,124 signatures from 41,237 on the city's registered voter rolls as of today.

One couple told the council that they were disappointed with the referendum leaders for using paid workers from outside Pleasanton to collect the needed signatures.

"It's a black eye for our city," they said.

Another woman, who lives on Junipero Street where traffic would increase with the development, said she was afraid to allow her children to go to Raley's supermarket on Sunol Boulevard or even to walk to Hearst Elementary which they attend because of the overly aggressive signature solicitors.

"My father, a Vietnam veteran, was yelled at by one of these outsiders," she said. "My kids can't go the park or library when they are around."

Another woman said she was subjected to verbal abuse.

"I am angry and I want to know who hired these people and what the name of the company is that supplies these kinds of workers," she said.

After referendum backer Allen Roberts told the Council that while some of the signature gatherers were being paid, another 50 of them were Pleasanton volunteers.

But when Councilman Arne Olson asked him to identify he firm that is supplying the paid workers, Roberts said he knows the company but declined to disclose that information.

At 5 p.m. Friday, Roberts and others leading the referendum effort must turn their petitions into City Clerk Karen Diaz. She will make a prima facie (first look) review of the petitions and, if they have the needed number of signatures, will then forward them to the Alameda County Registrar of Voters, whose office will check each signature against voter registration records and also look for duplicates.

The registrar's office must complete its review within 60 days.

It's that office's final number that will determine if at least 10% of the city's registered voters signed the petitions to call for a referendum.

If they did, Diaz will send that verification to the City Council which could repeal the ordinance it approved Jan. 5 authorizing Greenbriar Homes to move forward on its proposed Lund Ranch development.

Or, more likely, the Council within 88 days must call for a special election to ask voters to decide how to proceed.

That election would likely be held during the June 7 primary at an estimated cost to city taxpayers of $250,000.

Comments

9 people like this
Posted by chaos
a resident of Harvest Park Middle School
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:23 am

In November 2007, Kay Ayala followed me as I exited the Safeway shopping center as I was taking my shopping cart to the car. As she walked side by side as I took my cart to the car, he asked me to sign the petition that she said would save the rest of the southeast hills. She said they were building a mile long road on the top of ridges on a property called oak grove and that the petition would ban this road and any road within 100 vertical feet of a ridgeline or on any slope greater than twenty-five percent. It would also ban any development within 100 vertical feet of a ridgeline or on any slope greater than twenty-five percent with the exception of small developments of 10 or fewer houses. I signed the petition. I voted for Measure PP.

And who has created this latest chaos? Kay Ayala.

When I look at the www.savepleasantonhillsides.com/our-supporters/ website, I trust the actual people who wrote Measure PP in the first place are listed on that website. And I trust the Pleasanton Voters members at of www.pleasantonvoters.com/about-us-our-supporters.html

I suspect that the reason no ridgeline ordinance was ever written by the city and the citizens listed on the savepleasantonhillsides site had to do it themselves is that between 1996 and 2004, the years Ayala was on the city council, that the mere fact that Kay Ayala was on the city council meant that nothing would ever get accomplished by that council. Of course what did happen was bad project after bad project approved and referended by the people.

I look forward to voting against the Lund Ranch II development project.


30 people like this
Posted by anonymous
a resident of Del Prado
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:30 am

Honestly, I had no opinion on the Lund Ranch situation, but the aggressive signature gatherers have been a complete turnoff. One blocked the path to my car and told my son that I was ruining his future because I didn't sign. The way these people have behaved, they could be asking for signatures in favor of warm puppies and rainbows and I'd tell them to go away. They're rude and obnoxious and have no business acting the way they do.


19 people like this
Posted by Check Facts First
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:38 am

@Chaos

Please read more about the project before making such comments. Greenbriar will build a project on Lund Ranch. It's not IF but WHEN. The project has been a compromise on all sides.


19 people like this
Posted by Alexis B
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:41 am

Copied and reposted from my other Town Square post:

I am the mother to two young children and I live in Mission Park. Everyday I see the dangers of the growing traffic problem down my street, and for the safety of my children I am against the referendum. To that end, I along with two other mothers on my street, have spent many hours alongside paid signature gatherers while we peacefully hand out fliers. The times that our children have been with us, we have all repeatedly been subjected to threats against us and our children. The paid gatherers have taken videos and pictures of our children without our consent as a way to get us to leave. They smoke next to us, and they threaten to even have our children taken away from us and to file false claims about us unless we leave. This is sadly not an isolated incident; all the mothers in our group have separately experienced this. Two mothers TODAY ALONE have been at the police station filing reports for threats and verbal assault.

While our children have the great honor of watching their mothers peacefully participate in the political process, they should NOT have to be subject to the intimidation and threats against them and their mothers.

The solution cannot be to tell mothers to stay home and remain silent. Women and mothers have a voice and we will not be held down. Rather, the solution is to create a political environment where everyone can be respected.

Who is authorizing these thugs to threaten and intimidate Pleasanton mothers and children? The “ Save Pleasanton Hillsides" group, comprised of residents of Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek, Allen Roberts, and Councilmember Karla Brown. I call special responsibility to Karla Brown because she has been elected to represent and protect us â€" but by her close association with this group has done the exact opposite. Finally, I call upon all of them to tell us the name of the company so we can file complaints about the personal attacks I and other mothers have been subject to. I have made numerous attempts to request this information, but we are repeatedly denied.

So you hire thugs to come to our town, pay them to assault us, and then refuse to tell us their name so we can defend ourselves?! THIS IS WRONG.

I demand the name of this company!


19 people like this
Posted by Allen Roberts is protecting his hired thugs
a resident of Birdland
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:46 am

[Post removed due to excessive and/or repetitive post by same poster]


24 people like this
Posted by Resident of Ventana Hills
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:53 am

@chaos, per @Check Facts First,

You don't know all of the facts and long history of this project.

All the referendum will do is rescind the currently approved project. It does NOT end the project, and it does NOT decide whether "a road is a structure." In addition to reviewing the facts below (if you care to spend the time to get educated on the issues involved in this project, spanning some 25 years, including many Planning Commission and City Council meetings, especially over the past several years on this matter), also read the Town Square post, "Councilmember Karla Brown and the referendum." This and that post are real eye openers.

This whole referendum petition effort is a massive 'perception deception' by a select few seeking to protect and preserve their own self-interests based on NIMBYism.

First, a first-hand examination of the Lund Ranch II project site, per this PW Town Square post on 1/26/16 by 'Don't Understand the Fuss,' a resident of West of Foothill:

"With the clear weather today I decided to drive over to these neighborhoods and explore for myself what is being referendumed. Started by parking at Mission Hills Park and walking the length of Independence Drive past the fire road up to Sycamore Heights. Noted that both Mission Hills and Ventana Hills are clearly on flat land in the valley.

First street encountered in SH (Sycamore Heights) was Sunset Creek Lane. Seems to be perched on a ridge with about 1/2 a dozen homes. At the end of the street is a sign saying Pleasanton would extend the road further. Hill past the road rose slightly for about 50-60 yards then dropped off into a valley. I assume this is where the new homes are going. Met another walker doing the same examination of the issue. We agreed the SH people had it made - sitting on top of a ridge on a road on top of a ridge with great views.

Then walked over to Sycamore Creek Way. Whoa this was quite a climb. This street is on a higher ridge with about a dozen homes on that ridge. You know its the top of the ridge because there's a water tower and cities generally locate water towers on high points. Met two other walkers, also on a mission to examine what all the fuss is about. They agreed - SH residents have it lucky being on top of the ridges.

So SH residents are making a fuss about extending a road over a slight hill down into a valley. At the same time there are Pleasanton residents willing to take the time to examine the properties affected and make informed, intelligent, on-site visual decisions.

It's not supposed to rain the next few days. I suggest anyone interested in whether to sign the referendum or not first "walk the property" to see what all the fuss is all about.

Shakespeare may have had it right - it's seems to be much ado about nothing and the referendum supporters protest too much."

Here are some more facts to consider:

1. The two last full-page ads in the 1/22/16 and 1/29/16 editions of the Pleasanton Weekly are complete and total misrepresentations of the Lund Ranch II project, designed to instigate fear in order to compel voters to sign the group, "SavePleasantonHillsides'" referendum petition. The Mayor and City Council, on 1/5/16, approved a project of 43 homes, of which, ALL of them will be built on FLAT land, in a VALLEY, with NO homes to be built on ANY hillside or ridgeline whatsoever.

2. Residents of Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek, along with Allen Roberts of Gray Eagle, a gated community at the top of Crellin Road, and Councilmember Karla Brown, a resident of Kottinger Ranch, a subdivision of some of the most expensive homes in Pleasanton, of which many could never have been built under Measure PP because they sit on hillsides and ridgelines (involving thousands of truckloads of dirt removal to create the pads for those homes on those hillsides and ridgelines), object to a road being extended from Sycamore Creek Way to access 31 of the 43 homes to be built. They are using the argument that a road is a structure, and that that is part of Measure PP, to thereby leverage Measure PP to force the rescinding of the project's approval.

3. The SavePleasantonHillsides group claims to be a 'grassroots' effort to protect Pleasanton's hillsides and ridgelines/safeguard Measure PP. The definition of 'grassroots,' as found on Wikipedia:

"A grassroots movement (often referenced in the context of a political movement) as defined by Webster's Third International Dictionary, is one which uses the people in a given district as the basis for a political or economic movement. Grassroots movements and organizations utilize collective action from the local level to effect change at the local, regional, national, or international level."

SavePleasantonHillsides is using PAID signature gatherers who are NOT residents of Pleasanton (i.e., are NOT local), at a cost of approximately $30,000 to $50,000, bankrolled by an unknown number of wealthy individuals in order to acquire enough signatures to put their referendum on the ballot.

4. Residents of Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek are on record several times requesting that ALL traffic to the Lund Ranch II project be accessed through Lund Ranch Road, which currently is a dead end road located in Ventana Hills.

5. Residents of Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek signed documents when purchasing their homes that clearly stated Sycamore Creek Way would be extended into the future Lund Ranch II housing development.

6. The Mayor and City Council approved a compromise re: traffic access into/out of Lund Ranch II, whereby 12 of the 43 homes will be accessed via Lund Ranch Road (in addition to the 17 homes on Middleton Place that already access Ventana Hills and Mission Hills neighborhoods, which originally they were not supposed to, adding to a total of 29), and the remaining 31 (i.e., the remaining homes in the approved Lund Ranch II project) will be accessed via Sycamore Creek Way (via Sunset Creek Lane). Part of that approval requires the building of a very short road, with a short jog down a hill (the City can confirm the exact length of this road) that will not be visible to the public.

7. Greenbriar Homes, the developer, agreed to building just 43 homes. The original plans for Lund Ranch II, part of the City's General Plan for over three decades, calls for approximately four times as many homes. Greenbriar is giving the City 174 acres (according to them; other reports state 177) of the property as permanent open space, which amounts to the remaining amount of the property (89.5%, again, according to Greenbriar) which they can NOT build on, due to Measure PP (i.e., hillsides and ridgelines). The total project site is 195 acres.

8. Greenbriar develops and pays for its own ads and other of its own efforts regarding opposing the Lund Ranch II project, which they have the right to do as they so choose. "Protect Pleasanton Neighborhoods" was created by and consists of residents of Ventana Hills and Mission Hills, and we contributed our OWN money to purchase two half-page ads in the 1/15/16 and 1/22/16 editions of the Pleasanton Weekly. We are not funded by Greenbriar. We don't have financial resources that the wealthy residents of Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek have to run full-page ads and pay for signature gatherers and robocalls. Greenbriar pursues their own efforts for their own intents and purposes, which, quite frankly, is to be able to move forward with building the approved project of 43 homes.

9. The Mayor's and City Council's decision was a compromise decision to strike a balance between honoring previous, long-standing obligations previous City administrations had made to the residents of Ventana Hills and Mission Hills, in addition to following through on similarly long-standing plans to provide road access to Lund Ranch II via Sycamore Creek Way (extending it by building Sunset Creek Lane). The Mayor and City Council, in reaching their decision, also took into account PUD-87, which is the major apartment (approx. 350 apartments) and retail complex being built on the southeast corner of Bernal and Stanley. Much of the traffic resulting from that project will be traveling on Bernal, with a strong likelihood of much of it adding to the existing cut-through traffic that flows through Ventana Hills and Mission Hills via Independence to Junipero to Sunol Blvd.

Greenbriar did not get everything they wanted in the approved project, nor did Ventana Hills and Missions Hills residents, nor Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek residents. Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek residents are pursuing the referendum because they refuse to accept the compromise decision, reached after decades of review, public meetings and debate.

9. Re: SavePleasantonHillsides claim that the Mayor and City Councilmembers previously voted/determined/finalized that "roads are structures," that is NOT true, as what's known as a 'second reading', or vote on that matter NEVER has taken place. Thus, it has never officially been determined, regardless of what others may claim.

10. The SavePleasantonHillsides group claims that the Mayor and City Council's approval of the Lund Ranch II project sets a precedent for future projects. That is also NOT true. According to former City Attorney (now retired), Jonathan Lowell, he clearly stated during City Council meetings held in late 2015 that that was NOT the case, and that the Mayor and City Council could make determinations on whether projects adhere to Measure PP on a case by case basis.

11. The developer, Greenbriar, can reject any future decision to further reduce the number of homes in the Lund Ranch II project, and could choose to file a 'takings' lawsuit against the City, rather than resubmit a new project proposal. That could expose the City to tens of millions of dollars in liability. The former City Attorney stated anything below 30 homes, in his opinion, would put the City at risk of losing in court. Regardless of whether or not Greenbriar accepts a 30 home project, which would require the cancellation of the current project, and Greenbriar submitting an entirely new project proposal, it does NOT eliminate the fact that the residents of Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek are on record for NOT wanting to accept ANY traffic for Lund Ranch II through their neighborhoods (insisting that all traffic go through Ventana Hills and Mission Hills via Lund Ranch Road), and are now using the argument that it violates Measure PP to succeed in doing so because they refuse to accept the Mayor's and City Council's majority compromise decision. Greenbriar, if the referendum qualifies and is approved, will need to decide which makes more sense (i.e., what would be more profitable to them in the long run)--building a 30 home project, or a 10 home project, which under Measure PP, allows them to build all 10 homes atop of hillsides and ridgelines within the project site, but with no guarantee that any such reduced project will be approved, or, instead filing a 'takings' lawsuit against the City to recoup lost potential profits from the rejection of the previously approved project, PUD-25. A takings lawsuit could expose City taxpayers to tens of millions of dollars in liability.

12. The referendum petition, if successful, will result in costing taxpayers at least $247,000 to put it on the local ballot in June, based on the cost per person Alameda County charges for doing so, times the minimum number of valid signatures required to qualify the referendum to be put on the ballot.


16 people like this
Posted by TakeAccountability
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 10:19 am

Allen Roberts can claim he has 50 unpaid volunteers but I challenge him to publicly publish the % of paid vs. unpaid signatures when he submits his referendum petition. I doubt he will as he's far too afraid to even say the name of the company they are using when asked by a member of Council.

Paid Signature Gathering should be banned in this city but unfortunately it's controlled at the state levels. I have no objection to a resident presenting their side of the debate (even if it's not balanced) and asking for signatures as petitions are a legitimate part of the political process. I do however object to the gross inaccuracies, outright lies and intimidation of paid signature gatherers who will say almost anything for their per-signature paycheck which only goes up the closer they get to the deadline.


6 people like this
Posted by Dear PW
a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Feb 3, 2016 at 10:21 am

Dear PW:

An un-biased, SUCCINCT article on the topic of where we are today with Lund Ranch would be helpful for those of us without a dog in this fight. All I see is dizzying amounts of copy with no clear message from either side. We're being asked to take a side but it's unclear which side to choose and I don't trust either to give me the truth/facts. e.g.

One side wants to save the hills. How? By not building homes that would run traffic through their neighborhood? What will signing the referendum petitions do besides cost the city money?

The other side wants to save Mission Hills park. How/why is the park being threatened? By traffic from 11 new homes? How does not signing the referendum petition do this?







27 people like this
Posted by Patricia
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Feb 3, 2016 at 11:14 am

I don't necessarily have a problem with paid signature gatherers. They are mostly young people who need jobs collecting signatures for a variety of petitions. If they are being obnoxious, they should be reported to their employers and lose their jobs. I will say, however, that the only obnoxiousness I've been subjected to is by a resident opposing the referendum holding a sign outside Safeway. Even after I told him and the signature gatherer that I would not sign the referendum petition because I disagreed with it, the resident protester kept pushing his sign between me and the signature gatherer as I was trying to read other petitions regarding the minimum wage, etc. And he used his sign to physically push the young man I was speaking to into the parking lot, and to herd incoming shoppers away from him. The young man was getting angry, but I can't say I blame him. Both sides need to cool their jets!


8 people like this
Posted by Resident of Ventana Hills
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 11:23 am

@ Dear PW,

Appreciate your comments. I welcome any follow up article the PW would like to publish.

In the meantime, to at least address your question re:
"The other side wants to save Mission Hills park. How/why is the park being threatened? By traffic from 11 new homes? How does not signing the referendum petition do this?"

First, to be accurate, it's 12 homes that both Ventana Hills and Mission Hills would be accepting via an extension of Lund Ranch Road.

As I've stated previously, the Mayor and City Council, in reaching their decision, also took into account PUD-87, which is the major apartment (approx. 350 apartments) and retail complex being built on the southeast corner of Bernal and Stanley. Much of the traffic resulting from that project will be traveling on Bernal, with a strong likelihood of much of it adding to the existing cut-through traffic that already flows through Ventana Hills and Mission Hills via Bernal to Independence to Junipero to Sunol Blvd (and vice-versa).

Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek will suffer no such cut-through traffic, no matter what is decided re: Lund Ranch II. We accepted the compromise decision to avoid having to accept ALL of the traffic from Lund Ranch II going through our neighborhoods (all 43 homes), appreciating the above (in addition to promises made by prior City administrations that we wouldn't have to accept any Lund Ranch II traffic; that it was all pre-determined years ago to go through Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek neighborhoods via an extension of Sunset Creek Lane). The Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creek neighborhoods REFUSE to accept ANY of the traffic from Lund Ranch II being accessed through their neighborhoods--31 homes is what the Mayor and City Council determined was fair (remaining 12 via our neighborhoods, also adding 15-17 homes on Middleton Place, part of Bonde Ranch, that already traverse through our neighborhoods, which, again, based on previous City administrations, was never supposed to be the case). Thus, how the Mayor and City Council arrived at the split re: traffic.

Sycamore Heights and Bridle Creeks residents are on record requesting that ALL traffic access to Lund Ranch II be via Lund Ranch Road (i.e., via our neighborhoods).

The Mayor and majority of City Council disagreed, so now those two neighborhoods are pursuing this referendum to try to get what they want, instead of accepting the compromise decision.

If you have the time, review the City Council meeting minutes from the past few months regarding PUD-25 and/or watch the video recordings of those meetings. It's all there, on the record.

Hope that helps.


8 people like this
Posted by Phil Johnson
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Feb 3, 2016 at 12:57 pm

Ventana Hills, Ms Vicki and the whole gang has brought this upon themselves. I don't believe for one minute that someone who wants to gather signatures will curse and insult your kids unless you get up in their face and and start shouting at them. Actually the people I talked to gathering signatures were very informed and helpful. I signed because I want a chance to vote. Get out of the way and let me do what I want to do.

I saw it at Safeway 2 weeks ago and YOU are the problem. You are an embarrasement to yourselves. When my kids were younger I would have taken a paddle to them if they acted like this. We are a civilized community and you are just trying to bully them and scare them away. Some of them might be a little rough, so get out of their way. What do you expect?

Yes, they are not from Pleasanton and this is their job. If I don't want to sign, I don't need your busy body in the way. Get it?!

You are guilty of obstruction of citizen's right to collect signatures. I wish they would have called the police on you for getting in my way.


11 people like this
Posted by Petitioner Just Came to Door
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 2:13 pm

A man with a clip board of addresses just came to my door. (2p Wed afternoon). Only asked what my address was by listing numbers that were not my address number. No sales pitch or telling me why he was at my door, just simply rattling off numbers. I saw "referendum" on the papers and told him I will not sign anything for the referendum. Reply was "okay" and rudely left.

Ok, referendum signature gatherers, please have your people show some common courtesy. They need to state their business.

Very disappointing to be approached this way.




6 people like this
Posted by Resident of Ventana Hills
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 3:11 pm

@Phil Johnson,

Re: "Ventana Hills, Ms Vicki and the whole gang has brought this upon themselves."

Are you accusing the entire neighborhood (i.e., 'Ventana Hills') of harassing petition signature gatherers? C'mon, get real. Who's 'the whole gang?' I don't know of any gang members in my neighborhood.

Personally, I haven't seen a single person harass a signature gatherer--that's not to say it may not have happened, but I've seen no proof that anyone against the referendum has done that.

I haven't seen any aggressive signature gatherers, myself, either, but again, that's not to say it may not have happened.

I haven't seen any petition signature gatherers defending themselves, either. Of course, the paid ones are from out of town, so why would they visit the PW Town Square forum? They're too busy making money right now.

I can tell you I saw a sandwich board (sign) right inside the southern entrance to Raley's earlier this week stating in bold, all capital letters, "We Do Not Support Signature Gatherers/Solicitors" (don't remember the exact wording, but something to that effect).

What does that tell you? What it tells me is they've been on private property without the property owner's (i.e., Raley's) permission.

Also, the price per signature does indeed go up as the deadline approaches (I asked someone who's familiar with paid signature gatherers and how it works), so regarding those paid signature gatherers, guess they'll be getting even more aggressive between now and the Friday deadline, unfortunately.


2 people like this
Posted by Pete
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 5:28 pm

Have not observed signature gatherers for 3 days while doing errands around town.Finally located signature gatherer...and signed. Do not think there are enough signitures but these blogs make me sick...whether right or wrong...thanks bob and vic


10 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 5:55 pm

A signature gatherer just banged on our door.

@Pete,

Why would you sign?


17 people like this
Posted by DT Server
a resident of Mission Park
on Feb 3, 2016 at 7:13 pm

I'm a Pleasanton resident (since 1994) and a server at a downtown restaurant. Was super surprised when a signature collector came into our restaurant during our lunch service today and walked right up to one of our servers (plates in hand) to try to get her to sign. We politely asked him to leave but he persisted. Not wanting to create a scene in front of our guests, we simply ignored him and he finally left. I've been approached at Raley's and while walking downtown and now at my place of business. I really think lines are being crossed. To approach employees when they are doing their jobs? In a restaurant? Not okay.


8 people like this
Posted by VistaVoter
a resident of Val Vista
on Feb 3, 2016 at 7:22 pm

I personally have not been accosted or even witnessed any such activity by signature gatherers. My wife had a very pleasant encounter with a patitioneer.

We all have the right to participate in the Democratic process. I feel the city has already done that by its vote on PP. For the mayor and city council to go against the will of the people states they are more concerned with covering their own butts and not the will of their constituents. They have already allowed the Chick-fil-A development, in a horrible location with very little citizen feedback and lack of planning information on the city's website.

It would be interesting to see their campaign contributors. For instance, I am waiting to see the a new Wendy's in Pleasanton, as the CEO was a donor to the Mayor's political campaign.

I am in the Val Vista area, so I do not have a dog in this fight. However, I am not pleased with the over and nonsensical development of open space areas like have happened in the Dougherty Area and I would hate to see the Pleasanton Hills become a over developed blight.

The people of Pleasanton have already spoken on this matter. The city council needs to defend the voice of the people and not make deals against it.


10 people like this
Posted by Kim
a resident of Birdland
on Feb 3, 2016 at 8:07 pm

The do not sign side is the one doing all the yelling and commotion led by paid political operatives. I have signed the referendum. I was surprised to find out that Kay Ayala and Steve Brozoski led the charge in 2003 to increase the subdivision size to 150 houses. The proof is in the city council minutes of that initial EIR award contract for Lund Ranch II. Also in other minutes Ayala calls the road the gateway to a connection to highway 84. There is no mistaking that these developers see this as a gold mine and will do whatever they can fabricating whatever they can so their project can go forward. The tops of these 2 story houses are not within 100 vertical feet of the nearest height of the ridge line.

Obviously PP foes not talk about the peak of the highest point of some far off ridge line somewhere in the distance.

Obviously unless these mansions are each buried in some sort of crater then the entire project does not comply with Measure PP.


8 people like this
Posted by VocalFew
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Feb 3, 2016 at 8:20 pm

PW has become the backyard of Ventana Hills. Just because you have more people and are more vocal does not mean you are right. You can talk all nonsense, the fact is you are helping to break the voters approved PP measure, and damaging our hills. Your attempt to disrupt and bad-mouth normal referendum democracy process is deemed to fail. If you have guts, fight with the city and builder, do not try to strong-arm your neighbors and repeat false statements and start a smear campaign.


22 people like this
Posted by MsVic
a resident of Mission Park
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:31 pm

MsVic is a registered user.

@Phil - I guess you are not hearing what the paid people at saying. Watch the city council meeting on video from last night. Did you know - that Our council members own property in the new development - lies, or how about a highway going through Lund ranch - more lies. I just don't get it, how people can sign something without reading and understanding all the facts. SMH - I am glad these undesirable people are leaving our city soon and shame on the people of this city that brought this element to our community. @Phil I hope you and your loved ones are never exposed to some of the filth and dirty language the paid signature people said to some young moms in our community.


20 people like this
Posted by A Mother
a resident of Mission Park
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:34 pm

I'm not starting a smear campaign.. this happened to ME. This happened to other neighbors, women, mothers and children. We have police reports. We have witnesses. I wish this didn't happen to me, but it did and it frightens me.

I welcome the democratic process, but I do not support paying hired thugs to come to the city and harass us.



46 people like this
Posted by I didn't sign
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:38 pm

I didn't sign. I have witnessed some man taunting this poor lady because she was just handing out fliers. Her adorable daughter gave one to me and it was so sweet, I couldn't believe he would talk to her like that. It was clear at that point that I didn't trust any man that does that.

All of you should think twice about this whole thing. I have witnessed this myself and it is indeed going on. Sad for Pleasanton!


8 people like this
Posted by Witness to Everything
a resident of Amador Estates
on Feb 3, 2016 at 9:44 pm

I'm constantly going about town for my job and have seen all this commotion first hand. These paid people from out of town are a real problem. I see the cops around them constantly because of complaints, and I spoke to a store manager at Safeway @ Bernal who told me (near tears) that no matter how many times they call the cops there is nothing they can do.

I also see the "do not sign" people out there too but they are definitely not the problem. Most of the time they are just standing there holding a sign. What's the harm in that?! I've never seen any of them yell. A lot of them look like local moms like this story says.

The paid out-of-towners also approached my wife while she was getting out of her car in a parking lot. She was very startled and didn't like how close he got. It did seem overly aggressive to me.


13 people like this
Posted by Me Too
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 3, 2016 at 10:46 pm

I feel so neglected. No one has accosted me on one side or the other. Someone sort of approached me yesterday and today (no idea which side they were on) but I kept walking.

All of this for 43 homes?

$250,000 for the election if it goes to ballot?


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