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Pleasanton council candidates differ on key city issues at Weekly's forum

Original post made on Sep 19, 2018

The four candidates seeking election to two available seats on the Pleasanton City Council put their best feet forward at a public forum Monday, but not all were in step with the current council's agenda for the next four years.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, September 19, 2018, 1:44 PM

Comments (82)

36 people like this
Posted by MeadowPTown
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Sep 19, 2018 at 5:35 pm

MeadowPTown is a registered user.

I attended the forum on Monday night - nice to see these 4 individuals step up to the plate for our city. My impressions:

Narum: Most experienced and knowledgeable and gave very thoughtful, detailed responses. Is for smart planning - I liked her "housing by design" idea - looking at creative ways for affordable housing for our workforce, including teachers and police/fire.

Streng: Very personable, positive, focused on consensus building, well-versed on all topics. Like that he has been involved in city issues and served on multiple committees. Seems like his focus is on open spaces & parks, safe streets – especially near schools, and careful and smart planning to keep the city safe and vibrant.

Testa: Seemed scattered - I had a hard time following her responses at times. She was more doom & gloom than any of the other candidates. Does not like the ideas from the downtown task force, doesn't want to plan the East Side. Wants to see more collaboration between the school board and city council. Seems like her focus is on schools, drinking water and slow/no growth.

LeDoux: Was knowledgeable about all topics - could tell that he has been studying the relevant issues. He seemed to be in-step with Narum and Streng on the issues, with his answers focused primarily on public safety, which makes sense as he is a policeman. Has not previously served on any city committees - seems like a big step to start off by running for city council - would like to have seen previous city involvement.

Based on what I saw and heard, Narum and Streng are the strongest candidates in my opinion. I think it’s worth watching the rebroadcast mentioned in the article if you weren’t able to attend the forum.


29 people like this
Posted by Sandy Piderit
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Sep 19, 2018 at 5:44 pm

Sandy Piderit is a registered user.

There's an important difference between Kathy Narum and Julie Testa regarding when the city should restart east side planning.... Julie Testa advocated against any planning before the next RHNA numbers are released, while Kathy Narum clearly stated that city staff would have the capacity to restart east side planning as soon as the downtown specific plan is complete (mid-2019).

In any case, if you want to see the city library expanded, the best choices are Kathy Narum and Joe Streng.


22 people like this
Posted by Ptown Resident
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 19, 2018 at 7:50 pm

I watched the forum and here were my takeaways:

Joseph Ledoux and Kathy Narum were the clear standouts in this forum.

-Joseph Ledoux: Well informed on the issues and took a clear stance. Brought up a unique perspective on how to handle crime and how to drive additional revenue to Pleasanton. I found his lack of political involvement refreshing.

-Kathy Narum: Solid candidate. Well prepared to speak to the issues at hand. Had thoughtful responses to the questions at hand. I think Narum's experience and Ledoux's fresh perspective would serve Pleasanton well.

-Joe Streng: Seemed personable but I didn't see him take a strong stance on any one issue, except maybe his comment on housing. I heard a lot of "I agree with candidate Narum" and "I agree with candidate Ledoux" I want someone to challenge the status quo. Streng doesn't seem like that guy.

-Julie Testa: All over the place and seemed unprepared. She brought up other things irrelevant to the question throughout the forum. She also seems like she wouldn't be open to hearing other perspectives and collaborate well with others.


23 people like this
Posted by Carol
a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:08 am

Carol is a registered user.

We need experience so that is why we believe Narum is the strongest candidate by far. Streng has at least served on a commission and thus understands the processes. Unfortunately while Ledoux is studying hard he has no experience and has not volunteered on a committee, commission or tasf force. I cant help wonder therefore if an unknown special group is helping him on the issues. Testa is fragmented and inconsistent. She appears to not be a consensus builder and not knowledgeable despite years of speaking at school board meetings. We plan to vote for Narum and Streng.


20 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 20, 2018 at 11:29 am

I like that Ledoux is not a politician. With his occupation, he brings in a unique view along with experience nobody else has. His experience as a police officer will greatly enhance public safety in our community. It will also allow a council member to offer a validated opinion of some of the issues with our police department. Yes, he does not have the prior experience some have desired but he more than makes up for that with his clear knowledge, education and vision for the future. Besides, he has to start somewhere. I was thoroughly impressed after meeting him downtown last week. Ledoux will definitely get my vote. As for the other, Testa is too frazzled. It's obviously between Streng and Narum but I am undecided.


12 people like this
Posted by MikeP
a resident of Country Fair
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:30 pm

Met Joe Streng at the Farmers Market and was impressed with his service to Pleasanton over the years and his enthusiasm for continued service. The cookies he was handing out were pretty tasty too.


16 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:44 pm

Agree with all the comments here about Julie Testa. We need council members who are coherent, so that leaves Kathy and the Joes. As many have noted, Kathy Narum's experience is certainly beneficial to the City and is the strongest candidate. And while Joe Streng has some relevant experience, I think a compelling addition to the council would be Joe Ledoux, given his background, perspective, and ability to articulate and advocate for his positions. Narum/Ledoux looks like the winning ticket to me.


80 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 21, 2018 at 4:23 pm

Seriously??? Are we going to vote members of City Council in because they gave you cookies? Joe Streng is a nice guy, but don't let a "yes man" determine the future of our town. He is clearly in the pocket of the Chamber of Commerce, and his platform revolves around providing free doggie poop bags at the park.

Joe LeDoux seems to genuinely want to contribute to the city, however, what has he DONE for Pleasanton that would qualify him for such a role? I'd say he needs to get some real civic experience and then attempt such an office.

Testa may seem to be a bit more bristly and "doom and gloom" - probably because she is the most REALISTIC candidate, actually bringing issues to the forefront, and ensuring that residents know all angles of an issue before casting a vote. She has served as a City Commissioner, has been on the board of several local non-profits, and has attended every Downtown Specific Plan meeting in the last two years. She clearly seems to be as well-versed on the issues as Kathy Narum, the current incumbent. It's clear that she does her homework, much more that the other candidates.

Narum does seem to be the most informed of all, clearly because she currently serves as a city councilwoman. She has a long list of endorsers, which says something for her ability to work with others.

I'm leaning toward Julie Testa and Kathy Narum for this election. It seems that both would provide the experience that Pleasanton requires.


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Posted by document.getElementsByName("user_name")[0].innerText=" ";
a resident of Amador Estates
on Sep 21, 2018 at 6:23 pm

This is my comment.


13 people like this
Posted by Julie
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 22, 2018 at 1:00 pm

If Ledoux cares so much about pleasanton, he would be best served by getting appointed to a commission or committee and learning that way. Starting with a high profile position after never being involved smacks either of ignorance that there are other ways to start (in which case he’s not qualified) or ego-boosting.

Julie is negative and scattered. She also lacked a basic knowledge of some key issues: housing and the downtown specific plan, just to name two. .

Vote Narum and Streng


37 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 22, 2018 at 1:24 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

“. . . and has attended every Downtown Specific Plan meeting in the last two years . . . “

“Julie” - I know Anonymous’s comment to be accurate.

If you are endorsing the same people the Chamber is supporting, then just say so.


15 people like this
Posted by MikeP
a resident of Country Fair
on Sep 22, 2018 at 3:14 pm

LOL, Anonymous - I am not voting for Joe Streng because of the cookies - thanks for putting words into my mouth - have to say the cookies tasted MUCH better.

I am voting for Streng because I was impressed by his passion for and commitment to Pleasanton and has put in lots of time serving on commissions. He spoke intelligently and eloquently about the issues and I believe he will listen to and work for ALL of us. I like that he views issues as “opportunities” rather than threats. He has my vote.


53 people like this
Posted by Rob
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 22, 2018 at 4:10 pm

As Kathleen R. alluded to, it would be great if people didn’t come here just to post negative comments, without reading the article and looking up the real qualifications of each candidate.

Julie Testa is the best candidate looking out for us residents that are tired of traffic, overcrowded schools, consistent approval for building more housing than is State-mandated - especially, after we voted to cap the residences at 29,000. If the State mandates we have to build, there's not much we can do about that. But, there's no reason to continue to approve housing projects beyond the State's requirements. That’s not what Pleasanton residents want.

Julie is also the only candidate consistently advocating for Pleasanton in Sacramento, and is thus very well-versed in the discussions around AB 2923 ("BART Housing"), SB 35, and SB 827. If you still don’t know what these bills are about, they can seriously change the landscape of this town, filling it with condos and apartments, and making it look like Dublin Blvd. This is why Julie is so passionate about this issue.


18 people like this
Posted by Vicki
a resident of Mission Park
on Sep 22, 2018 at 4:30 pm

To Rob - it’s disrespectful to say Julie is the only one advocating for Pleasanton - just just not true. Unfortunately I agree with many others. Julie is scattered, can’t hold a complete thought on a topic, is disjointed and not well spoken on the tough topics and issues facing us in Pleasanton. Not my idea of a great candidate. I will be casting my vote for Kathy and Joe.


41 people like this
Posted by Rob
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 22, 2018 at 5:23 pm

Vicki -
Please let us know which other city council candidates have gone to Sacramento to participate in the hearings for bills I mentioned above - or any others. I could not find any.

Rob


3 people like this
Posted by Michael Austin
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 22, 2018 at 7:09 pm

Joe Streng looks like a MAYOR running for a city council seat!


49 people like this
Posted by Sam
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 22, 2018 at 8:54 pm

Talking about real issues that will have significant future impact on Pleasanton is not being negative it is the essence of looking out for Pleasanton’ quality of life. I want a candidate with Testa’s passion and willingness to fight for the residents. I have read Julie’s letters in the paper for years and know she is focused and will not be controlled by special interests. I will not vote for a candidate who is endorsed by the Chamber PAC which IS a pro housing special interest.
We need someone who will think Independently, my vote is for TESTA.


14 people like this
Posted by Julie
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 23, 2018 at 8:55 am

Hey Kathleen - guess what? I’ve actually met with Julie in the past to discuss issues. So thanks but no thanks regarding your assumption of me.

Also to your other point. Last week Julie walked around Farmers Market around telling people the City Council had already voted on the Downtown Specific Plan. I’m sorry -what? Not true. I guess she should’ve listened at those meetings she went to.

I guess I support the most qualified candidates. And so does the Chamber. Crazy how that works sometimes. But hey if you want to support people who bend the truth and people who have no experience working on behalf of the city because you like to be seen as anti-Chamber, go for it. That sounds like sound positioning.


12 people like this
Posted by justwondering
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 23, 2018 at 9:42 am

justwondering is a registered user.

There are many different ways to advocate for Pleasanton with Sacramento. Do you really think that attending a committee meeting, stepping to the microphone, stating your name and "oppose" is making an impact? Did Julie attend the press conference held by Baker/Glazer against the BART bill the other day? Have Baker/Glazer endorsed her candidacy? This sounds more like trying to create a sound bite.

I, too, was told by Julie that the downtown specific plan has already been approved at Farmer's Market. When I went to the website ptowndtown.org I found that not to be true. She also said that its been decided that the current library building is to be torn down. I found that not to be true as well--in fact the City Council has specifically directed it NOT to be torn down. She is either not listening when she attends these meetings or is making stuff up for more sound bites.

For me, I want someone who deals in facts not making stuff up for sound bites.


38 people like this
Posted by Paulette
a resident of Del Prado
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:07 am

I attended the forum which reinforced my support of Julie Testa. She is a woman of conviction who stands with Pleasanton residents and has done so for years. Since I worked with her 18 years ago to Protect Our Water from injected sewage, I can speak from personal experience that she is thorough in doing her research and homework before taking a stand on an issue. She will continue to do the same for us in the future if you elect her.
In the forum setting, very short responses tend to force a "soundbite" answer. Most of the issues addressed were complex so having the depth of knowledge and history that Julie provides is not easily accomplished in 90 seconds. I am happy to endorse Julie Testa for City Council because she brings a rational thoughtful approach to providing implementable solutions to our problems. Without people who are passionate and willing to stand up for their convictions especially in the face of enormous political and economic pressure, we are likely to get more of the same for Pleasanton, unfettered expansion without safe reliable infrastructure and no local control or accountability. The quick compromise and business as usual attitude shown by the other candidates is not a solid strategy nor is it sustainable.

My vote is for Julie Testa. Her voice on behalf of the residents of Pleasanton will help keep our city a desirable place to live, work and raise a family. If you are concerned about how Pleasanton will look in 2, 10 or even 20 years, pay attention now, and vote for a candidate who shares your vision for a better Pleasanton, that's Julie Testa.


14 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:14 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Julie, I'm not anti-Chamber and I'm also supporting Kathy Narum.

Julie has a lot of experience in this community, one on a commission.

I will ask Julie about that vote.


15 people like this
Posted by Vicki
a resident of Mission Park
on Sep 23, 2018 at 7:59 pm

I personally cannot vote for someone who is not being truthful. Listen carefully to what is being said. Testa has said in public that the council HAS ALREADY VOTED ON DOWNTOWN SPECIFIC PLAN AND LIBRARY. NOT TRUE!!! Do you vote for someone not telling the truth now - what happens when in office. Not for me. I can’t in good consciousness give her my vote. Think about this before casting your vote.


7 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 23, 2018 at 8:30 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

It is hearsay at this point. I’ll try to clarify when I can. Julie is knowledgeable and would not make that kind of mistake.


5 people like this
Posted by justwondering
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:10 pm

justwondering is a registered user.

Kathleen, watch the tape from the forum. Pretty sure that Julie said in her answer regarding downtown that the specific plan has already been approved. Also, I'm pretty sure she said that the current library building would be torn down which is contrary to the direction given by the City Council. In her handout, she refers to massive housing projects in downtown. Could she identify the document that speaks to the massive housing projects she is referring to?

I agree that some of the comments are heresay. The forum tape will either confirm this or not. Facts do matter.


29 people like this
Posted by Ptown Haven
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Sep 24, 2018 at 8:24 am

My vote is for Julie Testa. We don’t need massive housing projects In the downtown area, talk about doom and gloom! Also, where would Pleasanton get the $200 million++ it would take to relocate the library, police and government buildings to the Bernal property? Julie is our voice against this insane doom and gloom!


11 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 24, 2018 at 8:55 am

justwondering - These are some pretty serious allegations, that Julie Testa "lied" so blatantly. In a forum like this, I would expect for you to back up your statements with more finite information, rather than relying on your memory. At what point(s) in the Candidates' Forum did she say these "lies"? Lucky for you, the Forum airs again Monday (TODAY) at 9am on Channel 29. So grab a cup of coffee, and back up your statement with a time stamp.


3 people like this
Posted by Vicki
a resident of Mission Park
on Sep 24, 2018 at 9:26 am

Testa stated the inaccuracies at the farmers market - directly to me.


29 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 24, 2018 at 9:50 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Vicki, still hearsay--no way for you (or others) to back up that claim. No way for me to disprove it. There is another Task Force, the Civic Center. Could Julie Testa have been talking about that? You certainly can read what Julie has stated in her guest opinion: Web Link There is also information on her web site: julietesta.com

As Anonymous points out, I find it difficult to believe that Julie would write on this topic in one way and speak to it (and in a forum, no less) in a completely opposite way. Exactly what advantage would Julie gain by lying when she can be so easily called out on it?

Julie has worked for this community for decades. Like her or not; vote for her or not--but there is no need to make unlikely accusations. Otherwise, it just looks like a smear campaign and why would anyone need to use that tactic?


24 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 24, 2018 at 10:10 am

We need someone like Julie Testa to fight for our beautiful town! Our vote is for Kathy Narum and Julie. Experience and tenacity! Don't let these comments from those who support housing in our downtown fool you! Go Julie!


8 people like this
Posted by Short term memory?
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Sep 24, 2018 at 12:21 pm

Surprised to see ANY support from the Mission Hills neighborhood (Independence, Sonoma, & Junipero) for Narum & Streng.

Both who are endorsed by the Chamber.

Don't you remember when:

The Chamber supported the 300+ apartments at Bernal & Stanley?
The Chamber (numerous times) supported Ponderosa developments at the Busch Pumpkin Patch?
The Chamber supported Greenbrier's efforts to put traffic from all 50 Lund Ranch homes into your neighborhood?

Wait till the Chamber supports the East Side development (which they already have for 2000+ homes), and Narum & Streng rubber stamp approve.

Speed bumps, left turn signal delay, & radar sign are not going to help you.

Remember, you get what you voted for.

I Cut thru your neighborhood today on the way to work....was shocked at the number of Narum & Streng yardsigns I passed.


2 people like this
Posted by Miss Vic
a resident of Mission Park
on Sep 24, 2018 at 12:55 pm

So to answer Short Term Memory - Kathy along with Thorne and Arnie - DID NOT recommend all the traffic from Lund Ranch 2 to come down Junipero. Your memory is incorrect. The ONLY council member to support All traffic coming down Junipero was Karla. The other members looked to the neighborhood for a compromise and they supported a compromise of only 12 homes traffic coming down Junipero and the balance to exit through Sycamore. Yes we support Kathy because she listened and helped pass the compromise. And could I ask that you stop using my neighborhood as a cut through or perhaps more lumps and no left during certain hours will be what we ask for next. K bye thx.


4 people like this
Posted by Short term memory?
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Sep 24, 2018 at 1:25 pm

Miss Vic...

What I posted was...

The Chamber supported Greenbrier's efforts to put traffic from all 50 Lund Ranch homes into your neighborhood?

But now that you brought it up...let's look at the record...

When Arnie & Kathy were on the planning commission, both voted that a road IS a structure.
This decision would have put all Lund Ranch development onto Independence.

Not sure where Thorn was during the "codifying" of Measure PP. (But he is running un-opposed...so doesn't matter for this discussion).

Narum is a rubber stamp.
Goes along with the "consensus"
During last election, she justified her road IS a structure vote by stating that the planning commission which she was a part of (Pentin also I believe) voted unanimously that a road IS a structure.

Didn’t the planning commission, which at the time was Chaired by Nancy Allen, vote UNANIMOUSLY to have all traffic from Lund be directed onto Sycamore? (answer yes).

That would have resulted in ZERO traffic into your neighborhood.

Current CC (Narum included), ignored the vote of the Nancy Allen Planning commission. So your “compromise” really wasn’t that great of a deal for your neighborhood.

We need elected officials who will stand up and represent folks such as yourself.

Not the interests of the rich and powerful (Sycamore Heights & Bridle Creek).

You think you won by accepting a compromise?
No
What you witnessed was the pressure on elected officials by the rich & powerful…who folded under that pressure.

What makes matters worse, is that you believe you “won” by accepting a compromise.

It’s called it being duped.



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Posted by Miss Vic
a resident of Mission Park
on Sep 24, 2018 at 1:44 pm

Short term memory - not duped, attended most if not all. It was a long drawn out process that began many councils ago. I support Kathy for the compromise plain and simple. None of the traffic would have come down my street if it had not been for Karla and a few others trying to force a referendum. A compromise was the only way to keep 100% from coming down my street. Now I’ll ask you again please stop using my neighborhood as a cut through.


29 people like this
Posted by Walkin Around
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 24, 2018 at 2:50 pm

If Julie's platform is against any high density housing projects in the Downtown area, then she gets my vote. She can help to save our Downtown area from more traffic congestion/safety issues, more over-crowded schools, more deterioration of roads/infrastructure, and she'll also be saving our town OVER $200 MILLION to boot!


8 people like this
Posted by Short term memory?
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Sep 24, 2018 at 3:24 pm

Miss Vic...

Glad you brought up the referendum

That was measure K. Web Link)

Just another example of the current City Council (Narum included), Greenbrier, with support from the Chamber ignores the “will of the voters”

Specifically Measure PP.

In 2008 Measure PP passed by an overwhelming majority.

The Measure was to protect our hillsides from development.

The City’s own analysis stated that if Measure PP passed, only 10 homes could be built on Lund Ranch.

Measure PP stated that no structure can be built within 100 feet of a ridgeline.

All 50 homes are built within 100 feet of a major ridgeline.

So how did a development of 50 homes, all within 100 feet of a ridgeline get approved??

By support from the Chamber of Commerce, and the candidates they endorsed.

Those endorsements are the equivalent of “markers”…don’t be fooled…markers are always eventually “called-in”

Someone earlier in this thread made an accusation of K. Ruegsegger being anti-chamber.

With the Chamber total dis-regard for prior votes, it is easy for one to become anti-Chamber.

Currently, in process are additional efforts, with total support from the Chamber, to overturn another voter approved mandate related to the Bernal Property…I think that was Measure J.

The City Council established a “Civic Center Task Force” to build a Civic Center on the Bernal Property (Which they cannot according to Measure J). I think the library has a scale model on display.

The task force already has a full plan in place.

Let the deception begin (lead by the Chamber).

I hope that the voters of Pleasanton will not be duped.

P.S. Even though the Lund Ranch development CLEARLY violates Measure PP…held my nose and votes YES.
Getting 174 acres of protected open space was too good a deal to pass up.


6 people like this
Posted by Short term memory?
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Sep 25, 2018 at 7:04 am

@Miss Vic

Do not know how long you have lived in Pleasanton, but both my & wife’s family have roots 100+ years.

I remember when the only the sewer plant, Kaiser, and Castlewood were on that side of town.

I have many friends who live(d) (some dead now) in Mission Park area.

Many are still upset that Junipero is a through street. Mission was to be the through street, with Junipero dead ending at Sonoma at one end, and the park on the other.

But then the powerful Shea Homes & Shappell home came into the conversation…now Junipero is a through street which it was never intended to be.

Your old neighbors have successfully fought the city in the past. This resulted in a dead end at San Antonio (Greenbrier wanted to make it a thru street to Bridle Creek). It also resulted in a dead end at Independence and Lund Ranch.

Your old neighbors also fought successfully to save the Bonde Ridge. Ever wonder why the Bonde development is on 2 sides of the ridge? It’s because your neighbors stepped up and REFUSED to compromise.

My point being….surprised that I saw many signs in your neighborhood supporting Chamber endorsed candidates. The chamber has always supported developments over the years which would have a negative impact on your neighborhood.

The big one of course is the East Side development which includes the El Charro road extension to Stanley. A plan supported by the Chamber.

If you think you have cut-thru problems now, wait until commuters find out that 580-El Charro-Stanley-Bernal-Independence-Junipero is a great way to avoid the 580/680 interchange.



15 people like this
Posted by Jack
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Sep 25, 2018 at 9:03 am

Jack is a registered user.

I don't know who I'm going to vote for, but I do know this, I don't trust current leadership. The whole Johnson Drive thing got repealed because it wasn't done on the up and up. It's the same group who is in charge of the Downtown Specific Plan, I don't know what Julie Testa said about it, but I think voters would be wise to pay close attention...


6 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 25, 2018 at 9:25 am

There is nothing fundamentally wrong with the JDEZ as will be shown through the additional review. If there was such a conspiracy as some would like to believe then why would the city be open to publicly reviewing it again? This is simply an opportunity to ensure everyone who is threatening lawsuits gets to be heard yet again (given voters have already resoundingly voiced support through measure MM.)

The net effect will just be a delay to everyone for an amenity that a large majority of residents want.

Our council needs people who operate on thoughtfulness and fact, not fear and conspiracy theories. That’s why Kathy Narum is the obvious first choice and Joe Ledoux has shown that same kind of thinking and approach.


22 people like this
Posted by Walkin Around
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 25, 2018 at 10:11 am

Just like Jack's comment, I too am having a hard time trusting anyone on the Downtown Specific Plan Committee. I don't believe they are truly listening to any of our comments/recommendations for the plan, as if they're falling on deaf ears. We truly believe the Committee has already made their decision and if passed, will be extremely disastrous to our Downtown area. Julie has been our voice to stop this horrible plan. We're voting for Julie.


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Posted by Miss Vic
a resident of Mission Park
on Sep 25, 2018 at 1:12 pm

Short term memory? I refuse to be baited, thank you very much. I have lived here in Mission Park for well over 30 years. I am very familiar with which Street was supposed to be a through Street. And I endorse Kathy. I will not get into a verbal argument when I am as well aware of the facts. Kathy listened to the Neighbors when the residents of sycamore, Karla and Matt Sullivan tried to force the traffic down our street. That’s all I have to say to you. Our street will be back in front of traffic dept and council if cut through gets any worse.


5 people like this
Posted by Jack
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Sep 25, 2018 at 1:28 pm

Jack is a registered user.

@ Resident
The JDEZ reports state that Black Tie, Patio World, Dog Dynasty, Consumer Education Center, and a Church are going to generate the SAME amount of traffic as Costco! 44% to those 5 businesses, 44% to Costco, and 12% to the proposed hotels... I think that's the kind of hooey that led the City Council to say, "We were just kidding, let us go back to the drawing board..."


13 people like this
Posted by Short term memory?
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Sep 25, 2018 at 5:45 pm

The people posting here who support Narum & Streng are probably the most dangerous people in town.

A great example of "little knowledge is more dangerous than no knowledge"

I to, am interested in FACTS.

So here is a FACT...The City already has a City COuncil approved downtown specific plan!

What is currently underway is a revision to that City Council approved DTSP.

So if Miss Testa stated that we have a City Council Approved plan...she is correct (She usually is).

But did anyone get that timestamp yet to back -up their claims that Miss Testa lied in the forum?


9 people like this
Posted by Wilma
a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Sep 27, 2018 at 12:19 am

Wilma is a registered user.

Julie Testa is very mis-iinformed or does not understand real facts. I too have heard her say things or make accusations that are just not true. And other than being a gadfly at school board and city meetings, what has she actually DONE other than throw rocks. Oh, and sue the city clerk Just what we dont need.

I dont know why the chamber, who represents our businesses and corporations, many of who are world class and employ Pleasanton residents, is pointed to as villians. Many businesses are big donors to caused we love like our schools, food bank, animal rescue, senior support services, etc without much fanfare. I guess people just love to always blame big business and development. Ironic since those same people have jobs and live in a house and like to shop and eat in restaurants.


18 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 27, 2018 at 10:21 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Wilma, any examples you can verify? Gadfly?? Julie was part of a group that fought to get money set aside for a new elementary school. Julie was a leader of a group of citizens who were able to determine the district had illegally refinanced old bonds.

I don't think the Chamber is a villain. The concern stems from their support of every building project regardless of the impact on traffic, water, and schools. Otherwise, I'd agree they are an integral part of our community and are part of many helpful projects.


7 people like this
Posted by Well.....
a resident of Livermore
on Sep 28, 2018 at 12:38 pm

Well..... is a registered user.

Among all these esoteric neighborhood complaints and generic disgruntlement, is there anyone in this town who is concerned at all about the plight of seniors who are on waiting lists for affordable senior housing? These lists are 6 to 7 years long and I have verified that fact and yet no one in Pleasanton seems to be concerned. They can afford their Million $ plus houses, so who cares if the seniors are living in one room eating dog food by candlelight? I am disgusted with people who only care about dog parks, Costco and speed bumps on their street. Maybe they should be glad they have a house to live in and do something to help those who do not. Pleasanton has priced people out of town who were founders, lived here for 50 years and cannot afford to stay. Maybe someday that will happen to you, but don't expect any help from Priviledged Pleasanton if it does.


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 1:33 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Well...,

I'm one of the ones who thinks we're already doing enough for seniors in Pleasanton. There is only so much money for handouts and from Social Security to Medicare to all the local subsidies to senior citizens, we are already tapped out. Living in a town for a long time, doesn't entitle a person to live in subsidized housing there for the rest of his/her life.


7 people like this
Posted by Well.....
a resident of Livermore
on Sep 28, 2018 at 2:02 pm

Well..... is a registered user.

BobB, your compassion is overwhelming. What, exactly, do you believe Pleasanton is doing for its seniors? What "handouts" are you referring to? I hope you've got a lot of money socked away in your offshore bank account, because living in this town, you're going to need it one day. Your approval of the older generation being priced out of their own town is disgusting. What goes around comes around.


2 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 28, 2018 at 2:31 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Well, I understand your concern and wouldn't oppose additional, reasonably priced housing for seniors. Someone once told me that most of the housing is taken up by seniors who were not former Pleasanton residents--if true, it might me something to think about. But more importantly, do you share the same concern for those of us with adult children who are leaving, often for other states, because they cannot afford to buy a home and raise a family here?


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 3:03 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Well...

Consider moving. I most likely will leave Pleasanton years from now, and would not consider asking for handouts so that I can can continue to live in an expensive neighborhood, just because I've lived here a long time. I've been subsidizing senior citizens for 35 years now with my Social Security and Medicare taxes. If something isn't done about these programs, the deficits they cause will kill our national economy.


4 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 3:08 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@KR,

Are you serious? This is a "concern"? I don't have any problem with my adult children moving to another town, state, or country for that matter. That's the way free trade and creative economic disruption work. That's part of why the standard of living throughout the world has improved so much over the last 150 years or so. I live over 2000 miles away from the states where I grew up. What's the problem?


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 3:13 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@KR,

What on Earth would you propose be done to address your concern? Approve more residential construction? That might help. Cap sales prices of existing homes? Not a chance of that. That would be crazy.


8 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 28, 2018 at 3:58 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Two of our children chose to move. They’re adults. I’m at peace with it, even though it makes me sad. A lot of effort went into making our kids decent human beings. Miss having them around. And the grandkids. I also live far from where I was raised and all my siblings. That was our choice. We feel fortunate to be able to afford staying here, but it is a problem if only one class of people can. I hope Pleasanton will conscientiously try to keep a vibrant community with young and old and everyone in between. Don’t you find it frightening that a 1 bedroom apartment can cost $3K a month? It is my understanding the apartment developer near us paid the city $5MM to avoid below market rate apartments. That’s great if the money is used to, heaven forbid, subsidize homes/apts. elsewhere in town.


6 people like this
Posted by Well.....
a resident of Livermore
on Sep 28, 2018 at 4:32 pm

Well..... is a registered user.

Bob B, Handouts???!!! Did you say handouts??!!! A reasonably priced apartment in your own town, near your family and friends is a handout to you? You are a pip as my old Dad used to say. You have no compassion and I find it revolting. You still haven't stated the "handouts" that you previously referred to are. Why should people have to move because housing prices have gone thru the roof for no other reason than that the Silicon Valley millionaires want to live here because it is a nice area. The housing prices around here are outrageous and everyone knows it. Your lack of compassion is astounding. Your parents must be so proud; if they know; they probably can't afford to live near you. Your loss.


6 people like this
Posted by Well.....
a resident of Livermore
on Sep 28, 2018 at 4:47 pm

Well..... is a registered user.

KR, I do share your concern for young people who have to move out of the area or the state in order to afford a home in which to raise their young families. I believe it is wrong. It's part of the disintegration of the family and I think it is a very bad thing for our society. It is no longer a choice to move out of this area; it is a necessity unless you are a millionaire and most of our children are not. It's outrageous that a one bedroom apartment in Pleasanton is not affordable for young people with college educations and good jobs. Something needs to change. Pleasanton is a nice town, but $3K a month for a one bedroom apartment? Ridiculous and sad.


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 5:08 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Well...

So you're big on increasing the budget for food stamps and other welfare for the poor and unfortunate? I am. Or do you think welfare is only okay for old people?

I am also all for building more high density, affordable housing near. BART and other public transportation. I am also for vastly expanding public transportation.


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Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 5:10 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Well...

Handouts like Social Security, Medicare, subsidized senior housing, subsidized senior centers, tax exemptions and so on.


Like this comment
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 5:16 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@KR,

How do you choose who gets to live in your subsidized housing? You mentioned $5 million from a developer, but that is nothing. Where is the rest of the money going to come from.


2 people like this
Posted by Affordability
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Sep 28, 2018 at 5:27 pm

Actually, Pleasanton is affordable.

a 1 Bed apartment , in such a nice area like pleasanton for $3k is a bargain.

Studio in SF, or Silicon Valley in similar area with good schools are $5k+

$2.5 Mill in Cupertino, Los Gatos, Los Altos, Palo Alto get 1650 Sq-ft home built in 1962 (fixer - upper).

That same $2.5 Mil gets top of the line Ruby Hill Estate.

Pleasanton is affordable housing for the Silicon Valley Tech & SF Software Industries.

The downside is...people making $200k per year can barely afford to buy in Pleasanton in the current market Making $200k and needing a bank mortgage against cash buyers...cash buyer always win.

...but just wait folks.

its California, Real Estate Market alwsys "corrects"

as @well & @ KR correctly point out, seniors & kids get squeezed out.

Not sure what the solution is, or could be


5 people like this
Posted by entitlements
a resident of Mohr Park
on Sep 28, 2018 at 5:35 pm

@BobB

SS & Medicare are entitlements.

If one has paid into the system, one is entitled to the benefits once one is eligible.

Not sure what point you are making tying these 2 Federal entitlement programs to subsidized SR. housing.

Voters recently pass a Bond Measure to help teachers & Police & Firefighters purchase homes.

Why not do something for seniors, who are mostly on a fixed income?




4 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 28, 2018 at 5:36 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

There have been lotteries here in the past (15 years or more ago I think). I can’t say it’s the best way—I believe you had to be a resident and work *in* Pleasanton. I’d like to tell you it limited the pool, but there were more applicants than places. I’ve only heard of the money buying those lottery homes back down in price, nothing about apartments/condos. I know the school district and city have talked about condos for teachers, firemen, police. Great idea, but there are others who could use assistance. I’m no expert; just think it’s a good thing to plan for diversity. We aren’t a little town anymore, and we aren’t really a millionaire’s haven—unless you count on the sales price of a home you’ve kept well maintained for 40 years.


4 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 6:20 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@entitlment,

You can collect some Medicare whether you've paid a dime of medicare taxes or not. That's the way it works. You can get more if you paid medicare taxes also. That doesn't make it not a handout. It is. Seniors on average take out about 3 times the amount they paid in taxes. The difference is made up by current tax payers. It is a form of welfare plain and simple. The trouble is that Social Security and Medicare are the biggest two expenditures by the federal government, and the budget deficit is growing out of control.

"Well..." was asking about handouts to seniors and I was giving examples.


4 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2018 at 6:24 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@KR,

A lottery like that would barely make a dent in availability, and the money would still need to come from somewhere. A lot more high density condos and apartments would go a lot further. Approving a lot more building throughout the tri-valley area would be the most effective way to address affordability.


11 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Sep 28, 2018 at 8:27 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Has to be responsible and well planned. I don’t want 5+ story buildings on every lot that comes up.


8 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 29, 2018 at 11:05 am

BobB is a registered user.

7+ story buildings around the BART stations would be great.


15 people like this
Posted by Walkin Around
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 29, 2018 at 2:32 pm

If we are required to add more High Density housing to Pleasanton (hopefully, that law will disappear soon!), then, as BobB stated, it should be located around Bart (walkable communities to BART, parking, and easy access to freeways). They can also add schools and a library at the BART location. Adding High Density housing to any part of the Downtown area will only increase traffic and safety concerns, and deplete the Downtown area infrastructure. We don’t need any High Density housing in any part of the Downtown area! Voting for Julie Testa.


5 people like this
Posted by Really?
a resident of Del Prado
on Oct 1, 2018 at 12:18 pm

By the way, the largest expenditure of the Federal Government is Defense spending. The Medicare and SS funds have been depleted because the Fed govt "borrowed" from them to fund the perpetual wars and corporate paybacks. They are both solvent and funded by workers contributions from their pay. SS is a payroll tax that most of us who have worked or are still working PAY. So it is not a hand-out or as some say in a derogatory manner, an "entitlement". You earned it so collect it. But don't try to live on it!


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 1, 2018 at 12:38 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Really,

Social Security and Medicare are handouts, and are entitlements. I have no problem with that. I have a problem with claiming they are not.

I don't know what chart you are looking at, but defense is nowhere near the biggest item in the federal budget. Perhaps you fell for one of those false memes circulating around the internet:

Web Link

Defense spending is about 17%, while Social Security is 25% and Health and Human Services (including Medicare) is 28%. More than half the budget and growing.


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 1, 2018 at 12:42 pm

BobB is a registered user.

"The real issue with the special bonds Social Security holds is the growing level of total federal debt and whether future taxpayers can repay it, or if future bonds can be sold to pay the principal of the maturing bonds. If the federal debt were much lower, no one would be paying much attention to claims that "Congress raided the Social Security trust fund.""

Web Link


7 people like this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Oct 2, 2018 at 5:25 pm

5 story, 7 story, 20 story stack and pack housing, great idea except for where are you going to bus the school age children of those units too since our schools are already overcrowded and in need of updating, maybe you can get the developers and investors and the real estate agents that profit from all that overbuilding to cough up the bucks, maybe BobB can throw in his SS and Medicare benefits since he doesn’t take “ handouts “, our kids and grandkids would be very appreciative.


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Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 2, 2018 at 6:27 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Map,

I do take handouts like Medicare and Social Security. I just don't mind calling them what they are.


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 2, 2018 at 6:29 pm

BobB is a registered user.

Yes, maybe we can get some money from developers for schools in addition to the extra property taxes.


3 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 2, 2018 at 6:55 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Developers do pay school fees, and higher than what the state calls for. The money was mostly squandered in previous administrations. But it isn’t enough on its own to build schools.


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 2, 2018 at 8:19 pm

BobB is a registered user.

I'm a fan of higher density schools (and housing) so building a new school isn't that important to me. I would like to see repairs and upgrades to existing schools.


9 people like this
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Oct 2, 2018 at 9:50 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

BobB $30MM to tear down a school and rebuild it, without adding capacity. Many millions more for what is deferred, deferred maintenance over a long period of years. 200+ students transferred out of their neighborhood schools. We need an elementary school, not higher density schools.


Like this comment
Posted by Sandy Piderit
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Oct 6, 2018 at 8:52 am

Sandy Piderit is a registered user.

Yes, Pleasanton has a current Downtown Specific Plan, which was approved in 2002. It is currently undergoing major revisions.

Source: Web Link

Still want to weigh in on HOW the plan should be revised? Here's the link that shows the past public meetings of the Task Force. Another will be scheduled later this fall. There's still time to provide your input and make sure that the final plan takes into consideration the wishes of the broadest swath of community members....

Web Link


1 person likes this
Posted by Testa in good company
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Oct 6, 2018 at 5:48 pm

@Wilma

Socrates's life as the "gadfly" of Athens began when his friend Chaerephon asked the oracle at Delphi if anyone were wiser than Socrates; the Oracle responded that no-one was wiser.


5 people like this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Oct 7, 2018 at 12:29 pm

Still confused about who really benefits from high density housing besides the investors, developers, and the realtors?? Certainly not our already overcrowded schools, or our streets clogged with drivers trying to get thru that next traffic light or stop sign , the quality of life here has been sold out to the highest bidder and all our city council and planning staff are worried about is how to sneak that $200 + million city center past the voters!! IMO if you make your living in real estate you shouldn’t be sitting in the chair downtown voting on more housing.


2 people like this
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2018 at 5:24 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Map,

The people buying or renting those new houses and apartments are getting the biggest benefits from new high density developments, not the "investors, developers, and realtors". Are you still confused about that?

High density housing belongs near public transportation, like BART, because it takes cars off the road, helps with clean air, and helps with housing affordability and availability.


Like this comment
Posted by Michael Austin
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 7, 2018 at 7:42 pm

BobB:
Would you approve of high density housing near the ACE train stop in Pleasanton?


Like this comment
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 7, 2018 at 8:42 pm

BobB is a registered user.

@Michael Austin,

It depends on your definition of high density, but it could work.


2 people like this
Posted by Michael Austin
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 7, 2018 at 8:53 pm

BobB:
Are you having a cool aide?
You are calling for high density housing near public transportation, citing Bart.
You should answer the high density question!


Like this comment
Posted by BobB
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 8, 2018 at 3:34 pm

BobB is a registered user.

"cool aide"?

Apartments like the ones across the street from the library would be fine by me in the vacant lot next to the tracks. Townhouses there would work for me too.


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

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