Claycord – Talk About Local Politics

March 17, 2017 18:12 pm · 11 comments


This special post is “Talk About LOCAL Politics”.

Please use this post to talk about LOCAL politics, and keep state and national politics out of this thread.

Thank you, and be kind to each other.

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1 Concord Mike March 18, 2017 at 10:53 AM

Unfortunately could not attend the CNWS meeting this morning. Why wasn’t it broadcast on TV like the other important city meetings?

Is it being recorded so we can go to the website and review it at our convenience?

If not, why not?

2 Fyi March 18, 2017 at 2:38 PM

Because it was at the senior center!

3 Mary Fouts March 18, 2017 at 3:28 PM

Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) – I was in Napa earlier today. The smoke plumes are incredible from burns by vineyard owners, burning vineyard residue. Some burns are very large. Saw at least a dozen from Hwy 29 through Napa. Surprising that BAAQMD will go after wood fireplace wood burners, but will allow this archaic burning practice to happen, when the vineyard remains can otherwise be composted or otherwise handled.

The smoke was so that people were pulled off roads taking photos. Great job, BAAQMD … Not!

4 KAD March 18, 2017 at 5:05 PM

Concord Mike – The City never televised the workshop meetings. There were 11 tables filling the room. There is no way to televise that. At least they are televising the CAC meetings. They did not do that last time they had a CAC.

5 Hope Johnson March 18, 2017 at 6:30 PM

@ Concord Mike #1

Guy Bjerke told us today at the workshop that it was being recorded and the video will be online at the Concord Reuse Project web site. I asked him if he would put the slide presentation up separately, too, and he said they would.

6 Concord Mike March 18, 2017 at 8:13 PM

@Hope Johnson, Thank you. I will check it out. I know they have had live TV from the senior center in the past. Glad to hear they video taped it.

Was any effort made on the part of the organizers of this meeting to “vet” the public attendees? By that I mean, were speakers asked to state whether or not they were residents of Concord? Was there a sign in log requesting that information?

I have been to meetings like this in the past where a high proportion of the participants were actually lobbyists from other cities trying to influence decision making here in Concord. CAC members and Concord residents should be entitled to know if a speaker or survey respondent is a resident of Concord or not.

7 Lars Anderson March 18, 2017 at 9:57 PM

When Guy Bejerke worked in Antioch his nickname was “Strip Mall McMansion” – that’s what he believes a city should be – big ugly McMansions and ugly shopping centers. When you have that city coffers fill up, and then city employees all give themselves fat raises. If Bejerke is the point man for the Navy base re-use project Concord is in a lot of trouble, we may be getting a new city but it will be an ugly one. And those promised play fields and the alleged new gym – these things are all pie in the sky – they are being promised to residents but it may be 20 years before residents see them, if they ever do. This re-use project is all about developers making a lot of money, and city workers reaping the benefit, Concord residents get almost nothing for their tax dollars – tax dollars are all eaten up by the bloated salaries and pensions of City workers, notably over at the PD.

8 Silva March 18, 2017 at 10:31 PM

Concord Mike #6, The crowds of outsiders rooting for their special interests, i.e. building trades. They sign in with their unions (for points, or pay? I don’t know), when they arrive then pack the meetings and speaker’s cards lobbying for what’s in THEIR own best interests. They sure SHOULD be required to say whether they are from Concord.

9 Hope Johnson March 19, 2017 at 10:11 AM

The CNWS “workshop” set up is a little different from a meeting. There’s no general public comment to a sitting body. People were divided up into tables to discuss a series of questions on an agenda, and then a single person from each table reports to everyone what was discussed.

There was a sign in sheet when you entered the Senior Center. It asked for your name, email, and how you learned about the event with choices to check off of mailer, reuse web site, online, other, and maybe something about the paper (I don’t recall for sure). I assume staff would believe those who check off the mailer choice are more likely to be Concord residents.

One person at the table I was at was from the neighborhood in Bay Point just over the hill from the CNWS. He said he was there because the project will affect his area, too.

There were lots of union people there, at least four tables of 8-10 people each. The union(s) had its/their own food table set up outside. This is going to go on for the remainder of the project. If residents are concerned about it, they are going to have to show up at these events – there is no other way to combat it since Concord tends to vote for the same group of people over and over or they are hired or appointed by the Council (think Bjerke and McGaillian & Obringer, both of whom are not “new” to the issues that have been going on and have been keeping agreement and support for the most part for at least six years with the incumbent councilmembers).

TAKE NOTICE NOW: Dennis Costanza, Lennar’s Community Rep, has been holding separate meetings with what is being referred to as “stakeholders.” He told me yesterday that these meetings (there was one last Thursday and one on Saturday afternoon after the workshop) are with people involved in the community who “know Concord” and can help define the specifics of how the CNWS area will be built. He said the general public often makes general statements such as we had a good time at Todos Santos at dinner and the stakeholders can help Howerton, the design company working on the specific plan, better define just how that interprets into a building, restaurant, design, etc. I take this to mean the selected stakeholders will be overriding general community input unless the community is very, very loud.

Lennar has a history of buying people off, and I’m certain they want to appease the “stakeholders” so they won’t make waves. This is what was done in SF. No doubt that many of them will be people who do some good in the community but keep in mind that non-profits need money and Lennar is going to be right there promising it to them. The decisions are not necessarily going to made impartially – that is how all developers work but Lennar is especially into this type of negotiating.

On the plus side, Dennis Costanza is very accessible and straight forward to deal with. But he is a cheerleader for the project and worked for the Hoffman Foundation (you know, the developer who gave Dan Helix his house way back when) and for the POA’s foundation. They are keeping it all in the family.

On a side note – Kofi Bonner was there yesterday. I stopped to let him know I was there, and he was having a chat with Mary Jo Rossi. Fun stuff.

And, all of this specific plan is being done way early in the project. Normally, the specific plan is not done until after the development agreement is signed. Lennar is NOT officially the master developer until that agreement with all the financials is finalized, and that is expected to take up to two years to complete.

This early specific plan is a mistake. It makes people believe Lennar has sealed the deal and makes it harder for Concord to back away if the development agreement is not the best financial deal for Concord. It’s yet another ridiculous act by the Council.

10 Silva March 19, 2017 at 6:43 PM

Thank you Hope.

11 Hope Johnson March 23, 2017 at 3:19 PM

So, is the Concord City Council about to appoint Dan Helix’s daughter as City Treasurer next week?

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