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Karla Brown, who helped stop Oak Grove development, announces run for Pleasanton City Council

Original post made on Aug 4, 2010

Karla Brown, a real estate broker associate and an 18-year Pleasanton resident, filed paperwork Monday with City Clerk Karen Diaz to become a candidate in the Nov. 2 election for City Council.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, August 4, 2010, 6:55 AM


Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Aug 4, 2010 at 8:30 am

Stacey is a registered user.

How is 51 homes, roughly half of what the land was zoned for, not "growth that is well balanced"? How does a nearly 500 acre park not "preserve out community's excellent quality of life"?

Ms. Brown's statements are just a bunch of campaign fluff.

I hope that we can get some representatives who understand that democracy doesn't just mean that only signature gatherers from a special interest group are allowed to campaign.

Posted by Hillside Hypocrisy
a resident of Downtown
on Aug 4, 2010 at 8:34 am

So Karla is President of the Kottinger Ranch Homeowners Association!

It’s funny how it was ok for Kottinger Ranch to eat up Pleasanton hillsides with Mcmansions back in the late 1980s and early 1990s and now NIMBY hypocrite Kottinger Ranch residents like Karla Brown have the nerve to protest a hillside development much smaller than Kottinger Ranch. Here we have a person that CONTRIBUTED TO THE HILLSIDE SPRAWL acting like she is the defender of our rolling hills. Talk about a political opportunist hypocrite!

Posted by dancermom
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Aug 4, 2010 at 8:42 am

I have known Karla for years and have worked with her on a number of Vintage Hills and PMS committees. She is honest, hard-working, dedicated to the community and very intelligent. I know she and her husband were hoping to enjoy their quiet time after their youngest leaves for college, but I guess she feels the call to help the City of Pleasanton is stronger than her own personal needs. Bravo, Karla! The City will be better off for it.

(Stacey, do you get up every morning to be the first one to post a negative message on this blog? I read this thing about six times a year and every single time YOU have the meanest things to say and are usually first to stir the pot.How sad. You don't have to comment back to me because I won't be reading it again for many months.)

Posted by Karen
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Aug 4, 2010 at 8:43 am

The truth comes out that those who helped deny Pleasanton residents their largest park and a great influx of money to our schools were only trying to protect their selfish interests. A vote for Brown means more of the same in the future.

Posted by Meghan
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Aug 4, 2010 at 8:56 am

Here Here, Stacey! I agree...

The thing I still can't understand is how the "No on D" proponents feel justified in claiming that "the citizens of Pleasanton have spoken" when talking about the recent defeat of such a carefully planned development that would have preserved our ridgelines (as buildings would have been deliberately placed below ridges), preserved existing oaks as well as planted new, and donated so many acres for the enjoyment of all. Not even half of the registered voters of Pleasanton came out to vote on the measure. I bet that those who didn't make it out either didn't know about the project or didn't care. Those who didn't care, probably didn't know enough about the project to know what was at stake either way. To say that "the citizens of Pleasanton have spoken" and that they don't want development is a joke.

I hope that all registered voters in Pleasanton will make it a point to educate themselves on the issues in their neighborhoods and hometown and get out this November and make their voice heard. We do not need people on our Council that claim to be for the people, but make comments at the Council meetings like... but we don't actually have to develop the parcels with affordable housing, just make it look like it's possible, right?

Posted by Liz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 9:15 am

What will be interesting is how she would balance her 'no growth' concepts to the ruling of the city having to throw out our growth boundary and affordable housing? I'd be interested in hearing where she and other candidates stand on that issue.

Posted by Nosy Neighbors
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Aug 4, 2010 at 9:21 am

Good for her. Although the article's title should have read.

"Karla Brown who opposed the rights of private property owners, denied Pleasanton of a 500 acre park & millions of dollars of tax revenue & who was complicit in deceiving voters with exaggerated depictions of ridge line homes, announces run for city council."

I can hear all the "she is honest, trustworthy, brave , clean, reverent, yada, yada, yada, comments already but in the end she will be connected to the former campaigns shady tactics & out & out lies & when the Lin's end up building 200+ ugly homes with no open space park just let me tell you now...I told you so.

Posted by nancy s.
a resident of Deer Oaks/Twelve Oaks
on Aug 4, 2010 at 9:30 am

This is the type of person (way of thinking) that we need to keep OFF the city council.

Posted by b
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 9:42 am

It seems rather disingenuous of her to claim that she represents "the citizens" on this one issue. In fact, nearly half of the Pleasanton citizenry (at least those who voted) actually SUPPORTED the Oak Grove development and park. For my part, I thought the development agreement was indeed a "well balanced" compromise between competing interests. It appears that MANY "citizens" of Pleasanton share my viewpoint.

This is a town divided. I will support any council candidate who will demonstrate an open mind and a focus on healing. I want to see someone committed to a collaborative approach to approving developments, balancing the interests of landowners, neighbors, and the community as a whole. I thought this had been done with Oak Grove, but there are clearly many people who feel that they were not heard. So let's talk, as a community, about how we can improve the process.

I do not like this candidate's victory dance, or her strong stance, which *does not* represent a very substantial portion of "the citizens."

Of course, there are many other issues our city will face in the next few years. Where does she stand on those issues? I guess this election is only going to be about Oak Grove. Sad.

Posted by Susan
a resident of Foxborough Estates
on Aug 4, 2010 at 9:44 am

I hope the residents of Pleasanton can now see that "No on D" robbed Pleasanton of a wonderful opportunity to cap the house on the hills while gifting Pleasanton with a huge new park. I do not doubt the sincerity of Ms. Brown desire to help Pleasanton. I do however feel she is not well suited to do it by serving on the city council. She has shown that she can not be counted on to take Pleasanton's best interest to heart when it conflicts with her personal interests. We were fooled once and shame on "No on D". If we are fooled twice, shame on us.

Posted by An honest friend
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Aug 4, 2010 at 10:07 am

I've known Karla for many years. She has HER best interests at heart but above all, she's just not that smart. Run for your lives Pleasanton!!

Posted by Marylou Edwards
a resident of Birdland
on Aug 4, 2010 at 10:33 am

You go girl! You have my vote! That's for sure!

Marylou Edwards

Posted by Joe
a resident of Birdland
on Aug 4, 2010 at 10:58 am

Some of you need to do your homework. The Taiwanese investors can't put 200 homes on the property, it is zoned for 98 max.-which with PP will be a lot less than that.

Posted by An honest friend
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Aug 4, 2010 at 11:02 am

I think Joe needs to do his homework. When did the "Taiwanese investors" try to put "200 homes on the property?" Not only is Karla not the sharpest knife in the drawer, it appears her supporters are, too! Run for your lives, Pleasanton!!

Posted by Primo
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 11:39 am

Karla has two things going for her right of the bat:
1) She was on the right side of Oak Grove issue
2) She can replace one of the loons on the Council that approved the Oak Grove development.
Its imperative that we get rid of Thorne, Cook-Callio and the Loony Mayor.

Posted by Sarah
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 11:49 am

As the President of the Kottinger Ranch Homeowners Association isn't her work against the Oak Grove development an example of the special interest politics?

Posted by justwondering
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 11:52 am

Great so the justification to elect Karla is based on her position on Oak Grove where she was just a shrill for Kay. That makes total sense. . .what else has she done in City government? Served on a Commission, even applied for a position on a Commission, attended a Commission or City Council meeting before she met Kay? Served on a task force? So we're looking at a one issue candidate who has clearly demonstrated her nymbism. Thanks but no thanks, we've already got sullivan who has demonstrated his inability to be able to do what's in the best interest for Pleasanton and not a neighborhood that contributes to his campaign.

Posted by Beth
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 12:13 pm

Carla Brown would just be another mouthpiece for Kay Ayala. We already have one of those on the Council in the person of Cindy McGovern. WE DON'T NEED ANOTHER.

Posted by Hillside Hypocrisy
a resident of Downtown
on Aug 4, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Gotta love Karla. Now that she has her piece of massive hillside sprawl in Kottinger Ranch, nobody else should be allowed to build a hillside homes. We should all just acknowledge the world revolves around this NIMBY joke of a candidate.

Posted by GOTV
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Aug 4, 2010 at 2:42 pm

It doesn't matter that she's "not the sharpest knife in the drawer." What matters more to me is that she's a single-issue candidate who teamed up with Kay Ayala. That spells disaster on our City Council. We'd better "Get Out The Vote" this time around, or we'll all be sorry!

Posted by It's about time....
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Aug 4, 2010 at 3:16 pm

Oh, it looks like the Thorne, Cook-Kallio and Hosterman supporters are out in force today. They must be very frightened of Karla Brown's candidacy because they know she has the voters on her side.

Karla stepped up to author a ridgeline preservation ordinance that the current city council failed to deliver on that was promised in 1996. The 1996 General Plan committee put as a policy in the General Plan and the City Council failed to develop one (gee whiz, Michael Hosterman and several park and recreation commission members were on the Open Space committee and failed to follow it through).

She did it on a shoestring budget, got overwhelming public support, even though the three members of the city council, pawns of the Lin development machine and their PR agency - Hosterman, Cook-Kallio, Thorne put on a sleazy countermeasure ("sleazy" according to the Valley Times and Trivalley Herald), driven by a fake so-called ridgeline preservation committee headed by Kathy Narum and Jerry Pentin.

A day after the Oak Grove vote, Kathy Narum and Jerry Pentin received a $10,000 advance from the Lin developer to prevent signatures from being gathered. The Pentin and Narum spent over $60,000 of Lin money to prevent signatures from being gathered.

Karla outmaneuvered them as well.

She also is smart enough to defeat a massively funded Lin PR campaign which spent $666,000 (well $665,519.32 to be exact) to get voters to agree to build megamansions teetering on ridgetops in the Southeast Hills.

And Karla is smart enough to defeat a Lin-initiated lawsuit with their well-coiffed lawyers where they set out to invalidate the referendum.

Gee, the city can't seem to win any lawsuits, can it?

I can't wait to November when Karla is elected.

Posted by Karen
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Aug 4, 2010 at 6:52 pm

"Pawns", "sleazy", "fake"--That's a lot of mud slinging for someone who won't use a real name. You are right about one thing though: the city did not win on any of this. Did you really defend someone's intelligence and end with, "I can't wait to November when Karla is elected."?

Posted by Get over it
a resident of Canyon Meadows
on Aug 4, 2010 at 7:15 pm

Boy, can you "YES" on D people get over yourselves already? You lost-period.
All the Lin money spent "educating" the public did not convince them that Oak Grove was a good idea, so STOP saying it's in our "best interest!"
Karla is right whether you like it or not, the people (doesn't matter how many 'cause only the one's who voted count!) didn't want it.

Honestly, saying unkind things about Karla (honest friend????) is so lame-wash the sour grapes out your mouth and move on.

Posted by It's about time
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Aug 4, 2010 at 7:26 pm

Those who have issues with the words "sleazy" as in "the City Council's sleazy attempt to confuse voters with a gutless competing measure" and "lame" and "not doing their jobs" being attributed to the actions of Hosterman, Cook-Kallio and Thorne, take it up with the editors of the Valley Times, Tri-valley Herald, and Oakland Tribune...

And while you are at it, ask those 3 politicians how much Lin money they have taken and why they continue on receiving Lin money. Also, you might ask them why they aren't doing their jobs when they were supposed to in reference to the fiasco below.

As in the editorial below:

7/02/08 Valley Times, and Tri-valley Herald Editorial

"THE PLEASANTON CITY COUNCIL should be embarrassed by the lame excuse for a ballot measure that it's planning to pawn off on voters in November.


A majority of the City Council — Cheryl Cook-Kallio, Jerry Thorne and Mayor Jennifer Hosterman — doesn't like the initiative. They've known since last fall that it was coming. They've had plenty of time to develop alternatives, or, better yet, to approve the ordinance that residents were promised more than a decade ago.

Instead, the council last week voted to put a second, competing measure on the November ballot. It's the old political trick of putting up a competing measure with hopes that both will fail.

So what is the bold solution the council is proposing? Why, it would commit the council to preparing a comprehensive hillside regulation ordinance.

In other words, the council is planning to put up for a vote whether it should do what it promised more than 10 years ago it would do. How's that for bold leadership?

If that's the best solution the City Council can offer, it should keep its alternative off the ballot and allow residents to vote on the citizens' initiative by itself.

If the initiative loses, nothing would prevent council members from preparing a reasonable alternative. It's a shame they couldn't do their job when they were supposed to."

Posted by Karen
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Aug 4, 2010 at 7:47 pm

Dear "Get Over It",
I'm glad the "No on Proposition 8" people didn't listen to you and go skulking away to lick their wounds. They lost a decision in an election, and-- guess what?--today a judge overturned it.
Some of us will keep fighting to secure the largest public open space in Pleasanton, even if you and Brown want us to just get over it. The margin of votes on this measure was 54% to 46%, which means for every Pleasanton citizen who feels he "won", another feels he lost a great opportunity to bring something wonderful and lasting to this city. Brown and all the Kottinger residents knew this land would be developed and signed that they knew this when they purchased their homes from the Lin Family. Now they want to change the rules and deny the rest of the city a 500-acre park. Why should the 46% of the voters who wanted the project, just get over it and not keep fighting for what they feel is in the best interest of the whole city?

Posted by Kaitlyn
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 10:19 pm

Pleasanton Residents:

This following is a letter to the editor from Ms. Brown Belcher regarding Oak Grove. My 10 year old daughter had better reasoning on why she would have voted yes. Whether for or against, I'd expect a more educated rationale from a council candidate. I will repost this as many times as need be to convince voters of Ms. Brown-Belcher's poor qualifications for being elected to our City Council.


Dear Editor,

Beware! Multi-million dollar homes on the Oak Grove ridges will not be paying their full share of expenses. Here's why:

* City expenses: We'll pay for more firemen to keep their homes safe due to the high fire danger region. Plus we need more police, librarians, planners and road repairs. We will need more coaches, fields and pools for kids to play football, baseball, swimming and soccer. The income from their taxes will not begin to cover the total city costs. Vote No on D.

Think about it voters. Would 54 home mean more firemen? Would 54 more homes mean more librarians? Soccer coaches? (she claims she coached in the RAGE organization so shouldn't she realize that the coaches are all volunteer or paid through private fees?) pools for kids to play football, baseball, swimming and soccer? This, from a woman who chaired the No on D committee and is now looking to have a 1/5 vote on our council? I'm confident we could make better decisions on the future of our city by throwing darts on a wall at the Hopyard.

Posted by GOTV
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Aug 4, 2010 at 11:06 pm

Kaitlyn, I sincerely hope you (and many others) will continue posting the lame remarks from someone who I believe is a completely unqualified candidate for our City Council. She brings absolutely nothing to the table when it comes to the broader issues, real hands-on experience with city government, and a demonstrated ability to work with others (both pro and con)in a collaborative way to bring resolution to issues that matter most to the residents of our community.

Posted by Brenda
a resident of Castlewood
on Aug 4, 2010 at 11:55 pm

Cook-Kallio was not even a one issue candidate. She had never participated in any way in Pleasanton until she ran for council. She won by getting pulled along in a national partisan election. She still has not done anything for Pleasanton.
She is a waste of space on the city council.

Posted by unbelievable
a resident of Amador Estates
on Aug 5, 2010 at 7:26 am

This is unbelievable. Karla as the front person for Kay (at least the first intials are the same!). Kay has never gotten over her defeat and now has her clone. Who are the people behind this campaign? Let's get some fresh air on this and see what is really going on.

Posted by Jimbo
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 5, 2010 at 7:46 am

Special Interests: Pursuing an agenda that favors a select few to the detriment of the the society overall.

I love how a candidate throws her hat into the ring to combat "special interests" when she spearheaded a drive to block a hillside development because it allegedly spoils the views from her hillside development, even though the rest of the city would have received enormous benefits from it (tax revenue, park land, etc). I am pretty sure that qualifies as "special interest".

Posted by computer hacker
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 5, 2010 at 8:05 am

Karla is a friend of mine. I see lots of comments but almost no real names. I work in IT and do a little hacking on the side for fun, nothing serious. Obviously most of you don't know how easy it is to go backwards through the PW site to find an IP address, then do a reverse search to find the computer registration name. [Deleted] No guts to put your own name down, so let me help you [deleted]. Slander is against the law, even if it is through a blog without your own name (lots of case law to prove it too after that teenager committed suicide).

When you use multiple names we call it "sock puppet" to appear you are more than one person. Who is next? JP or KH or KK? Keep it up and I will print your names too.

Posted by Barbara
a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on Aug 5, 2010 at 8:34 am

Slander is the oral communication of lies, so I believe you are threatening people with libel. Opinions, however, are not libelous, only the written statement of facts which the author knows to be untrue. Some of the above statements have been unkind, but I certain don't see anything illegal except your admission of hacking into the Pleasanton Weekly system.
If you have some pertinent information to add to the discussion about Ms. Brown's suitability for office, please do so. Don't try to scare people into silence.

Posted by computer hacker
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 5, 2010 at 8:50 am

Ms. "Barbara" I stand corrected. Bloggers sending out false statements that they know to be untrue, could be prosecuted for Libel. Libel involves the making of defamatory statements in a printed or fixed medium.

Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Aug 5, 2010 at 8:52 am

Stacey is a registered user.

AR? TB? CM? KA? SB? 733t!

Posted by computer hacker
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 5, 2010 at 9:35 am


Posted by Really! Really!
a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on Aug 5, 2010 at 5:11 pm

Really! Really! is a registered user.

A word about the security of Town Square
Around Town, posted by Dolores Fox Ciardelli, a resident of another community, 1 hour ago
Dolores Fox Ciardelli is a member (registered user) of Pleasanton Weekly

The only way to have access to IP addresses on our site is if you are an administrator of the server. To attach an IP address to a person, you would need to have access to the Internet service provider's user database. Also, there is no such thing as a computer registration name.

Dolores Fox Ciardelli

Managing editor, Pleasanton Weekly

So Karla's friend, the computer hacker, is also a liar, which is really a lose-lose situation. He/she was either a computer hacker or a liar. Either way, maybe not the best person to have as a character reference.

P.S. Stacey, I think you knew all along it was a bluff.

Posted by Howard Adams Neely
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 6, 2010 at 9:44 am

Howard Adams Neely is a registered user.

It was refreshing to have someone from the Weekly comment on those individuals who will not log in properly.
As a long time resident I understand property rights, and I'm sorry to say Karla does not. Hopefully, she will not have to say, "I'm sorry", when the City is facing a law suit from the Lin familly.

What everyone in Pleasanton should be saying is "What can we do to help the Lins get their property to a successful state, so they don't waste any more development money". We owe them big time.

Perhaps our new City Attorney can figure out a solution upon which our City Council could agree. We don't need to be spending a million plus dollars on this matter. Our President thinks he can borrow and just print money........our City Mayor and City Manager can't.

Blessings to all Pleasantonites......and a few prayers might help.

Posted by DJohns
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Aug 6, 2010 at 2:04 pm

DJohns is a registered user.

I could not disagree with Howard more. We do not owe the Lins anything!

A group of citizens felt there was more bad than good in the Oak Grove project and worked to get enough voters in the community to support them. The Lins are land specualtors and that comes with risk not guarantees. They have made a substantial profit in this community already.

The Lins and their representatives have disrespected our community by suing the City and our citizens. If they do so again I would hope we would stand together against such disrespect.

Many of us became involved in our community because of an issue close to home. We then continued due to a new community awareness. Karla can take credit for having a positive impact on her neighborhood by working to get the majority of voters of this city to support her concerns.

I do not have a strong opinion about the Oak Grove project and have never lived in Kottinger Ranch.