Sullivan's last stand against Walmart grocery | April 6, 2012 | Pleasanton Weekly | |

Pleasanton Weekly

News - April 6, 2012

Sullivan's last stand against Walmart grocery

Councilman seeks to reverse Planning Commission OK of Neighborhood Market

by Jeb Bing

Pleasanton City Councilman Matt Sullivan, a long-time and outspoken foe of the business and employment policies of national retailer Walmart Corp., filed an appeal Monday against a decision last month by the city's Planning Commission to allow the company to open one of its Neighborhood Markets here.

Walmart has filed papers with the city to open its market in the long-vacant 33,160-square-foot former Nob Hill supermarket building on Santa Rita Road, near Las Positas Boulevard.

The Pleasanton Planning Commission voted 5-0 on March 19 to approve for a second time Walmart's bid. The commission's decision actually was to deny an appeal by two Pleasanton residents, Angela Joe-Willmes and Linda Martin, who contested a decision by the city's zoning administrator.

The administrator ruled that Walmart could open its market at the site since the proposed market matches the footprint of the Nob Hill store, which the city approved in 1982.

In February, the City Council voted 4-1 to accept the zoning administrator's decision, with Sullivan casting the one vote against the measure.

Council members have the right to appeal any decisions by the Planning Commission and Sullivan filed his Monday with City Clerk Karen Diaz. The simple two-page appeal form carries his signature but no reasons for the appeal are given.

More than 150 attended the Planning Commission meeting, which was held in the Firehouse Arts Center because a large crowd was expected.

City Manager Nelson Fialho said the council meeting on Sullivan's appeal could attract the same or even a larger crowd and will likely also be held in the Firehouse Theater, which has seats for 227 people. If the Firehouse isn't available, another site will be chosen.

By law, the council must act on Sullivan's appeal within 45 days. With council meetings usually held on Tuesday evenings, Fialho said a special meeting will be called, possibly as early as April 24 if the Firehouse Theater is available. Other nights and later dates prior to the 45-day deadline also will be considered.

If the council votes to deny Sullivan's appeal, Walmart could file for operating permits at the old Nob Hill store as early as the next day. Improvements to the interior of the store that Walmart is proposing could take another two to three months, with the store likely to open in mid to late summer.


Posted by PTON resident, a resident of Las Positas Garden Homes
on Mar 26, 2013 at 3:55 pm

Pleasanton City Councilman Matt Sullivan: Why are you stalling plans for a new grocery store where Nob Hill used to be? Im a resident at the Las Positas townhome and it would be very much appreciated if by our community if we dont have to walk all the way to Trader Joes or drive to Safeway. What is your alternative solution? If you dont have one then please let us have our neighborhood grocery.

Posted by registered user, Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills
on Mar 26, 2013 at 5:48 pm

Perhaps this will help: Web Link

Posted by Pete , a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 26, 2013 at 6:37 pm

Really......? PTON

Posted by Libertarian, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 26, 2013 at 7:16 pm

See, this is why I so love living in Pleasanton. If we were over in France, people would protest Walmart setting shop in their neighborhood because, well, Walmart has a really bad record that includes "employing" (that's a nice way of saying exploiting) child and sweat shop labor overseas, mistreating women and ethnic minority workers abroad and domestically, surveilling its workers abroad and domestically, shutting down its stores rather than submit to legally elected unions, squeezing out small-time farmers in favor of large agribusiness operations, just to name a few. But all those concerns are so pathetically socialist. As if anyone in Pleasanton really should care about such things when we're talking about much more important matters. Like personal convenience.

So, bring it on, Walmart. Oh, and I just love that glossy photo that Kathleen kindly provided on your behalf. The photo SO resembles all the other Walmarts that occupy the American landscape.

Posted by john, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 26, 2013 at 8:10 pm

Looks like the free market may be putting some pressure on Walmart too.

Web Link

Posted by anon, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 26, 2013 at 8:53 pm

How can one councilman stop a project that has been approved. This is what I hate about Pleasanton. We have been waiting feverishly for this store to open. I say recall Matt Sullivan!!!

Posted by Waiting, Waiting, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 26, 2013 at 9:00 pm

This is an old article. What's the deal. Why is that extremist SUllivan digging up a very old and settled issue, and why is it posted. He's out of office, ignore him. We want WalMart open, open,

Posted by Me Too, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 26, 2013 at 11:43 pm

"Walmart has a really bad record that includes "employing" (that's a nice way of saying exploiting) child and sweat shop labor overseas" - gee, did you post this from your iPhone?

Posted by Thrifty, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Mar 27, 2013 at 9:43 am

Don't know if anyone's been to the Al Costa / San Ramon Walmart neighborhood market, but I found it a bit disappointing (variety, freshness and even prices are not impressive at all). Wouldn't it be nice if the old Nob Hill location had been used for Sprout's farmers market instead of Dublin?

Posted by lessismore, a resident of Mohr Park
on Mar 27, 2013 at 9:45 am

This is not about Ptown or Walmart. This is about one man who thinks unless you think just like him you are wrong. It's about his self serving ego.
Matt you take Bart to SF each day how about you just not come home and stay in SF.
We will not miss you. Your record in city government is one of not getting anything done.

Posted by matty, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 27, 2013 at 11:26 am

lessismore, you couldn't be more right. Just what we need, another narcisist trying to control our daily lives. I wonder what Matt does in SF all day......

Posted by Respect, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 29, 2013 at 9:15 am

I respect previous Councilmember Sullivan for standing up for what he believes in, and for his Safeway and union constituents. Not everyone in Pleasanton is a Chamber of Commerce right wing lug nut.