3 candidates vying for 2 Pleasanton Council seats in November election

Thorne also seeking re-election as mayor

Two incumbents and the chairman of the city Planning Commission have launched campaigns to win two open seats on the Pleasanton City Council Nov. 8.

Council members Karla Brown and Jerry Pentin, whose first four-year terms expire this year, will seek re-election. Planning commissioner Herb Ritter announced his plans to seek election to the council at a campaign launch last week.

Mayor Jerry Thorne also has announced that he will seek a third two-year term as mayor in the November election. As of today, he will be unopposed.

Candidates can file formal papers with City Clerk Karen Diaz starting July 18 with the filing deadline Aug. 12.

In alphabetic order, here are summaries of the council candidates qualifications:

Councilwoman Karla Brown

Brown was the top vote getter in 2012 and said she has a passion for serving the residents of Pleasanton. In addition to her council duties, she is a local Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices on First Street.

Council member jobs in Pleasanton involve more than the two times a month City Council meetings. Brown was chosen to serve as vice chair of LAVTA/Wheels bus board.

In addition, she is a member of: Pleasanton Audit Committee, Civic Center/Library Task Force, Fair Liaison committee, Livermore Liaison committee, Waste & Recycling committee, the East Bay Regional Park District Liaison committee, Zone 7 Water Liaison committee and the Regional Water Policy Roundtable committee.

Brown said in launching her campaign for re-election that she will "continue to offer slow and metered growth policies along with hillside protection, develop plans for a new and larger city library and Civic Center, reduce long-term pension debt, support a thriving downtown with additional parking, and partner with small businesses and residents to form a winning team keeping Pleasanton great."

For more information Karla Brown's re-election bid, sign on to her website at or contact her by email at

Councilman Jerry Pentin

In a campaign kickoff breakfast at the Alameda County Fairgrounds Pavilion, Pentin, who was first elected to the council four years ago, talked about the challenges and tough decisions he faced during his first term and the opportunities he sees in the coming years.

"I believe I have served the city the best I can," Pentin said. "I've done my homework, studied the issues, met with both sides of many items before the council and then voted for what is best for all residents in Pleasanton. And I'll keep it up for the next four years."

A 25-year resident of Pleasanton, Pentin and his wife Josine have a daughter Joi, who is a graduate of Amador Valley High School and UC Berkeley and now works in Silicon Valley.

Pentin served in the Marines from 1975 to 1980. He owns and operates Spring Street Studios, a media production company in Pleasanton.

Pentin told his supporters: "When I came to you four years ago, I told you I would be supporting our public schools, working to find a way to solve some of the traffic issues we have in the city, making public safety a priority and supporting open space, smart growth and affordable housing. I'm proud of the efforts I've made on these issues."

On specific issues, Pentin said he has worked with the Pleasanton School District to help it maintain the city's high quality of schools, insisted that the city's in-lieu housing fund stay separate from other funds in order to someday pay for another private/non-profit development and that he has maintained strong support for the city's police and firefighters.

He believes the council has done "an awesome job" of protecting open space in Pleasanton.

"For all the naysayers, our city is a leader in dedicating open space," he said. "Take a look around: 43 parks, Callippe Preserve with its 340 acres of preserved open space, Bernal Community Park with another 350 acres of dedicated parkland and sports fields."

For more information about Councilman Pentin, sign on to his webpage at

Planning Commission Chairman Herb Ritter

Ritter announced his candidacy for the City Council at the end of Pentin's campaign launch at the Fairgrounds and later at a meeting of the Rotary Club of Pleasanton North, where he also is a past president.

At a campaign rally last week, he told supporters that if elected to the council, he will work with the school district to improve education, drive economic vitality and promoting "smart engagement" on the environment.

"Building on my experience, civic leadership, and a 'roll up my sleeves' attitude over the past decade, I look forward to serving our increasingly diverse Pleasanton population as a trusted voice, but more importantly as an active listener both on the City Council and around town," Ritter said.

He said moving to Pleasanton from Washington State 26 years ago was "critical" to his success in life, and that he feels strongly about giving back to the community.

"My passion and care run deep for this amazing community," he said. "It's never been my intention to get into politics, yet by serving on the council I can increase my engagement with decision-making in the city and make more significant, enduring contributions to public service."

He continued: "I want to do all I can to preserve our small town feel while driving positive change in Pleasanton, making it an even better place to work, live, raise a family, and retire. I'm all for smart planning for a better city for today and tomorrow."

For more information, sign on to Ritter's campaign web site at

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48 people like this
Posted by Jason
a resident of Del Prado
on Jun 30, 2016 at 9:18 am

Karla has been a strong representative of the people. Easy decision, she has my vote.

13 people like this
Posted by Joan
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 30, 2016 at 9:19 am

Now that we are entering election season, will the mayor and council members respond to a resident's email inquiry? The only person who will get my vote is Jerry Pentin. He was the only one out of the five who did his job and replied to my email. I was under the impression that is part of their job.

40 people like this
Posted by Janeen
a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Jun 30, 2016 at 10:02 am

With years of experience in serving our city in different capacities, listening to the residents and showing they really care about Pleasanton, Jerry, Jerry and Herb have my votes!

99 people like this
Posted by Val
a resident of Val Vista
on Jun 30, 2016 at 10:56 am

I will support any candidate that says NO ON COSTCO. I doubt that any will have the courage to stand up for what is right! My reasons: traffic (12,000- 15,000 additional cars per day, according to the SEIR, at full buildout of the JDEDZ), pollutions from 4,000 cars per day fueling, effect on small businesses, crime, ugly representation of our City from the freeway, COSTS and BORROWING...just to name a few.

The sales tax benefit of Costco is smoke and mirrors after considering the lost sales tax from small businesses, the debt repayment, sales tax sharing, etc.

I will not support any candidate who causes us to miss the November election and results in greater costs for a future election. I am tired of decisions made for political reasons.

My blog will not be popular with City leaders; it will not be popular with Costco Company bloggers, or those avid fans who want the convenience of buying the "8 pound jar of mayonnaise" locally...but it is my opinion.

I love our City!

23 people like this
Posted by mike moreno
a resident of Stoneridge Park
on Jun 30, 2016 at 11:14 am

I am against any more housing. We are already built above the housing cap voted in by the residents years ago.
Thanks, Mike Moreno

69 people like this
Posted by Lisa
a resident of Val Vista
on Jun 30, 2016 at 3:43 pm

Karla is awesome! I like that she stands up for what she believes in even if the other council members and mayor don't agree. She has my vote.

40 people like this
Posted by 4PTown
a resident of Foothill High School
on Jun 30, 2016 at 6:28 pm

I will be voting for Jerry Thorne, Jerry Pentin, and Herb Ritter. Karla Brown does not deserve to hold any city government position.

24 people like this
Posted by MsVic
a resident of Mission Park
on Jun 30, 2016 at 6:33 pm

MsVic is a registered user.

Karla help to cost our city over 200,000, in unnecessary taxpayer expense to fund the initiative and ballot measure K against Lund Ranch, which was ultimately approved by the voters. Same outcome as what the majority of the city council approved. There's no way I am voting for Karla Brown. I am voting for Mayor Thorne, Jerry Pentin and Herb Ritter. All three are solid Pleasanton citizens with good common sense and a the best outlook for our City.

60 people like this
Posted by Lisa
a resident of Val Vista
on Jun 30, 2016 at 7:11 pm

Actually, Mayor Thorne cost the city 200,000. He chose to put the issue on the June ballot instead of the November ballot which would have cost the city very little. Yes, Measure K was approved by the voters but not by much. Clearly, there were many Pleasanton residents that voted "NO" on Measure K.

13 people like this
Posted by ???
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 30, 2016 at 7:35 pm

Actually the vote to put Measure K on the June ballot was 4-0 with Pentin recusing himself. I think the point here is the Councilwoman Brown sided with the Sycamore Heights neighborhood even though they signed a document acknowledging the road would be extended and houses would be built. Further, she was out collecting signatures on multiple occasions to qualify the referendum and then visibly out campaigning against the Measure.

30 people like this
Posted by MsVic
a resident of Mission Park
on Jun 30, 2016 at 7:41 pm

MsVic is a registered user.

Lisa are incorrect. Mayor Thorne did not cost this city 200,000 for an unnecessary ballot measure - Karla Brown and her troop of HILLSIDE buddies cost this city that money. Karla doesn't belong as a leader of our city. Done with her as a council member and not soon enough.

11 people like this
Posted by 4PTown
a resident of Foothill High School
on Jun 30, 2016 at 7:43 pm

Just to clarify @Lisa. The vote by the City Council to put Measure K on the June ballot was unanimous--including a yes vote from Karla Brown.

8 people like this
Posted by MsVic
a resident of Mission Park
on Jun 30, 2016 at 7:43 pm

MsVic is a registered user.

Oh and by the way a November ballot measure would have cost thousands too - alameda county and the state charges any city with measure significant dollars to put measure on the ballot. Read up on it - get the facts.

59 people like this
Posted by Lisa
a resident of Val Vista
on Jun 30, 2016 at 8:41 pm

The referendum would have happened regardless of Karla.
Let's agree to disagree.
I stand by my original post....
Karla is awesome! I like that she stands up for what she believes in even if the other council members and mayor don't agree. She has my vote.

22 people like this
Posted by Checked the Facts
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 30, 2016 at 9:04 pm

I did check the facts. An initiative in November will cost between $10,000- $30,000 to add to the ballot. This is because there is already an election in Pleasanton which will absorb most of the costs. If the Council would have waited until November for Measure K, it would have saved us over $200,000- - but, they had reasons for wanting to rush it to June, even knowing the extra costs.

If you don't believe this, ask the Council, or call the Registrar of Voters 510 272 6933., Tim Dupius.

21 people like this
Posted by MsVic
a resident of Mission Park
on Jun 30, 2016 at 9:13 pm

MsVic is a registered user.

Little does it matter Karla and all the other council members agreed to a June ballot. It was Karla campaigning for the referendum to begin with and she was part of the group that hired those horrid paid signature gathers. I have zero respect for her and her tactics. That's the end of tbe story.

25 people like this
Posted by Pete
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 1, 2016 at 10:48 am

MsVic, "Nothing can bring you Peace but yourself" Ralph Waldo Emerson...and/or maybe your sidekicks. You think conformity is good... Progress always comes with a cost.[removed]

12 people like this
Posted by MsVic
a resident of Mission Park
on Jul 1, 2016 at 2:14 pm

MsVic is a registered user.

@Pete I am perfectly at peace with myself. Thanks for checking. Like I said Karla Brown and the group living on hillsides brought a terrible element to our city in the way of paid signature gatherers. I for one will never align with any council member that involves themselves in that kind of activity. She knew the one by name that I was trying to file a restraining order against - but would never admit it, said she didn't know him - I heard her call him by name - Van. So therefore was she lying? Can I trust a councilmember who lies? Nope. She won't have my vote and I am completely at peace with myself.

27 people like this
Posted by Alexis B
a resident of Mission Park
on Jul 1, 2016 at 4:17 pm

Alexis B is a registered user.

Karla Brown has done a terrible job - she has to go. She has cost our city hundreds of thousands of dollars in unnecessary expenditures by promoting and actively advocating for the referendum, she has smiled and chuckled when countless women were being threatened in our town by the signature gatherers (review the recording and see it for yourself), and time after time I hear people say she has told them one thing and done another. We need HONEST people to work on our city council, not back-room dealers who are in the pocket of the wealthiest neighborhoods in town. I'm voting for candidates with integrity: Jerry, Jerry and Herb for the win!

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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