Claycord – Talk About Local Politics

December 8, 2017 19:00 pm · 63 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.

Please Note: Users who use multiple names will be deleted. Please choose a name so others can easily chat with you. Users must provide a name in the ‘name field’, please do not use the ‘@’ symbol in the name field.

Elvis December 8, 2017 at 10:44 PM

So, I think term limits for City Council members are in order, at the least.

KAD December 9, 2017 at 4:04 PM

To Hope Johnson and anyone else stating that the Dana Estates and Bishop Estates area is not going to be impacted by development for 30 years.

The City is in talks with the Navy about taking over the maintenance and/or leasing the CNWS property sooner rather than later. Allowing the Navy access to continue cleanup. The City, if they get their way, will be taking the grading dirt and dumping it behind us to cover the arsenic covered ground. The City is also in the process of rezoning the Green Frame/Linear Park, thereby taking it away from the CNWS property. Thank goodness some of my neighbors are now taking notice or new to the area. They are attending meetings and speaking their concernst. I can’t attend easily so I write letters that are benched. I watch every meeting that is taped by the City.

The City had a hiccup today during the meeting and the video was lost for a while. When the video returned, the sound was still out for quite a while. I sent them an email telling them they need good meeting notes for this portion. It was an important portion of the meeting. It is lost forever. I am not happy about that.

KAD December 9, 2017 at 4:15 PM

Hope Johnson – I have been a big supporter of yours as I think you know. You received votes from this household when you ran for the City Council. You need to consider, not only Sun Terrace, but all other areas of Concord. All areas of the City will be impacted by the development. I am looking forward to additional traffic studies.

Recall 'Em All December 9, 2017 at 6:48 PM

I’m more about districts right now but I can appreciate term limits. Question is, do you want them because you don’t like someone? Would you want them if you did like someone?
Also KAD, interesting how you always ignore everyone who might be an advocate and plead with Hope Johnson to take on your cause. We all will be impacted by the CNWS changes. Do you think you should have some special consideration, and why?

KAD December 9, 2017 at 9:40 PM

I never said I like Districts. I have not made up my mind yet on this topic. The CNWS is my backyard. It is not across the street from me.I should have something to say about what is put behind me.

Elvis December 10, 2017 at 12:37 AM

Actually it doesn’t have much to do with whether I like them,
but more with what kind of job they are doing. I don’t
live in Concord so I didn’t elect them, but I really don’t care
for the gritty direction the city is taking. I think term limits
would solve many of those problems.

Hope Johnson December 14, 2017 at 12:53 AM

Council voted Tuesday to move to district elections. They will be doing a resolution on it on Jan. 2. We need an independent commission to draw the district boundaries.

Hope Johnson December 9, 2017 at 6:57 PM

KAD – your posts are a perfect example of what I spoke about at the workshop today. I in no way said your neighborhood would not be impacted by the development. I specifically said your neighborhoods had important concerns. My point was that there is almost no discussion of the Port Chicago, Hillsborough, and North 6th impacts despite Phase 1 starting there and that area currently bearing the burden of supporting transit and attracting living wage jobs. In fact, at the last CAC meeting, you can hear one committee member actually say “we aren’t concerned about Port Chicago Hwy.” Many, many minutes of council and CAC meetings have been devoted to Bishop Estates and Dana Estates about the two streets going through. This is important but won’t happen for at least 20 years. Since Sun Terrace is next to Phase 1, there needs to be some time devoted to discussion of that area. The Lennar woman today basically just said Port Chicago will be impacted by traffic and shrugged her shoulders.

Our neighborhood cannot be expected to remain silent while this goes on. I dared to suggest that Sun Terrace needs to be addressed at least as much as an area that won’t be seeing street construction for 20 years and that warrants two posts that I’m not considering other neighborhoods? It’s time for other neighborhoods to recognize that the North Concord area cannot be the only area without some framework of a plan. My pointing out that North Concord willl be impacted first and needs at least some discussion in no way diminishes the importance of other areas. The North Concord areas have a right to point out that the current plan impacts our roads in Phase 1. Today was a discussion on transit and traffic not the clean up or vertical building. There was plenty of discussion about Bailey and Willow Pass as well as the pass through roads in Bishop Esates and Dana Estates. The areas near North Concord Bart deserve no less.

KAD December 9, 2017 at 9:44 PM

I agree with you. North Concord has every right to speak up. We all do which is why I write as many letters as I do to the City. There needs to be a Green Frame/Linear Park at all areas around the base.

KAD December 9, 2017 at 9:53 PM

I think the road construction will likely be sooner rather than later. I have been trying to point out to the City Management that Lennar/City Staff needs to be required to point out EVERY change they make to the original Area Plan every time they make a change. .

I do appreciate you keeping them on their toes.

Recall 'Em All December 10, 2017 at 9:50 AM

Thanks Hope!
Now that these two replies are in, I see the big picture.
Looks like we need to put our energy into the area most currently impacted by the development. We can redirect our efforts as focus changes. Would a letter writing campaign help change things? If you think it might, can you suggest who we should communicate with?

Hope Johnson December 14, 2017 at 12:50 AM

@ Recall “Em All

We all need to send emails/letters to the council about the traffic and transit plan. Info on contacting council:

Even better would be for people to show up at meetings.

Phase 1 will hit Willow Pass and Port Chicago Hwy heavily. Lennar offered money to deal with Willow Pass and planning is underway. But very little has been done to deal with Port Chicago even though the entire project is supposed to work because Bart is nearby, which, of course, is located at Panoramic and Port Chicago. It is intended to have high density housing. And this is the area that is supposed to be attractive to employers with living wage jobs.

Councilmember McGallian said Port Chicago sounded like a bottleneck so maybe drivers wouldn’t use it to cut through to areas east of Concord. Is a “bottleneck” really going to be attractive to employers?

The traffic around Bart will impact traffic everywhere in Concord as it combines with freeway congestion at commute hours. The traffic consultant claimed she only had to sit through one light at East Olivera turning onto Willow Pass during commute hour – everyone knows this is ridiculous, one can end up sitting through many lights. Even Councilmember Hoffmeister questioned the data.

There are a few streets planned to connect Port Chicago to Hwy 4 and get people from Hwy 4 to Bart. But this is not going to help Port Chicago at Salvio, especially as the planned 700+ units start being built around Todos Santos. Tim Carr, the president of the Sun Terrace Partnership, suggested a street running through the Coast Guard property but Lennar says the street will not be a thru street until Phase 2. Maybe that could be moved up.

I’ll just take a moment here to remind people why it was important to have more than one bidder competing for the project at the end. Catellus had offered $65M for infrastructure outside Phase 1 of the project (such as Port Chicago and, initially, Willow Pass) while Lennar offered only $15M – a huge $50M dollar difference. Dan Helix got Lennar to add another $15M to be used for Willow Pass only but Lennar then also reduced the offered community benefits by $10M. Basically reducing its “increase” for outside infrastructure to only $5M. Without a second bidder to pressure Lennar to sweeten the deal, Concord lost out. Only $20M for outside infrastructure when we know there was a previous offer of $65M.

Recall 'Em All December 14, 2017 at 7:41 PM

Again, thanks Hope.

Hope Johnson December 9, 2017 at 7:01 PM

Also, the power went out which is what happened to the video and audio at the meeting. I understand a car hit a pole somewhere and the power was out for some time in nearby areas. City staff did do a lot of running stound to try to get everything back working.

Hope Johnson December 9, 2017 at 8:01 PM

When I first stared posting on Claycord, I warned about the possibility Lennar might want to cap polluted areas instead of cleaning them. Now this is a concern in the areas contaminated with arsenic. This is why some of us argued with Edi Birsan that the trustworthiness of the companies competing for the master developer position was important to consider.

Dan Helix appears to now realize this as well. He said at public comment today that he cannot get a straight answer as to when Willow Pass Rd will be widened. He said he assumed it would be completed for Phase 1 but was told it would be completed in segments. There is little Concord can do about this on the Specific Plan until the Development Agreement (financial issues) is signed. Until then, Lennar’s promise to contribute money and complete Willow Pass Rd is non-binding – it’s just a promise from a company with an untrustworthy history of adhering to what it says it will do.

ON DA December 12, 2017 at 11:23 PM

Just for your information Hope Johnson the Willow Pass Rd. phase will probably never be widened properly within our lifetimes. The simple fact that driving habits will not support a highway system that suddenly turns from a non speed limit roadway into a residential neighborhood in less than 000.3 tenths of a second.

And nobody ever adheres to the LIMIT.

Divided and Concord December 10, 2017 at 6:50 PM

Traffic in and around North Concord is going to be brutal. It does seem to be glossed over by MANY conveniently. The Navy’s final report includes its traffic study but it’s done in a silo not taking into consideration the high density housing approved for the downtown area. All I keep hearing about is protecting West St. and Denkinger St. because of schools. Those of us living in North Concord love our children too. We deserve a decent quality of life too. We are having to bear the brunt of the high density housing which many of us don’t care for but have to deal with. Traffic in North Concord needs special attention and now.

Lar Anderson December 10, 2017 at 6:54 PM

I’m hearing Laura Hoffmeister is going to make this her last term on the Concord City Council. The rumour going around she’s having health problems. Has anybody else heard this? A citizens group is planning to try and recall her in 2018 due to the fact she has worked overtime – behind the scenes – to block the construction of a badly needed new library in Concord. Hoffmiester pretends to support a new library, but actually Hoffmiester opposes one, which is why Concord doesn’t have a new library like surrounding cities have (Clayton, WC, Lafayette, PH (on it’s way).
If Hoffmiester would announce she’s not running for re-election maybe the orginizers will call off the recall. It would be a waste of city tax dollars to have a recall, as I think may would agree. Hoffmiester has been on the council 24 years – she’s been loarding over the council agenda for decades – it’s clearly time for her to move over and let others lead. The key to getting a new library, many believe, is to get new leadership on the council. Leone, thankfully, is leaving, it would be great if Hoffmiester would also voluntarily get off the council too. As many are aware ALL Leone and Hoffmiester have done – all they have ever done in thier years on the council – is work behind the scenes to get city employees raises and enhanced pensions. They have really excelled at that – let me tell you, I invite anybody to check City of Concord public employee salaries – which can be viewed on the internet- most city employees now make 100K and up.

Anonymous December 11, 2017 at 9:01 AM

The Green frame is a stupid idea. It’s going to turn into a giant homeless encampment & the folks who demanded it will rue is creation and wonder how the government could be so stupid.

R December 11, 2017 at 11:29 AM

I agree. Bad urban planning that serves only to keep contiguous NIMBY houses from having a neighbor over the fence.

R December 11, 2017 at 11:48 AM

A camel is a horse designed by a committee.

Recall 'Em All December 11, 2017 at 7:15 PM

No one cared about providing greenbelts for any other infill that Concord has done. Hmm, maybe KAD wasn’t working on those projects.

Silva December 12, 2017 at 2:38 PM

Who needs places to walk, exercise, recreate, and for birds to live and wild animals to migrate and keep our ecosystem healthy? Yeah, we could get used to an overabundance of rats, mice, and squirrels, for sure.

Hope Johnson December 14, 2017 at 12:03 AM

@ R

A little off topic but calling a camel a horse designed by committee is the opposite of your assertion we don’t need green space. Camels live 40 to 50 years and can go long periods of time without water – a most desirable trait in the desert. Horses live about 25 years and die untended in a drought. Green space for existing areas is what will make this project more sustainable and provide quality of life. Lennar can’t wait to include all the green space in the interior of the project so it can use that as a selling point, and that’s what they’ve done.

Elvis December 15, 2017 at 12:22 AM

“A camel is a horse designed by a committee” is a phrase meaning if a committee set out to design a horse, it would likely end up looking like a camel given how committees work.

Well Folks December 11, 2017 at 9:52 AM

Lars – please provide a link or some kind of proof that Hoffmeister block any attempt at a new library. Also provide contact info for this so called “recall” group you have been yacking about for over a year. Personally I think you are full of BS.

For the record Lars the citizens of Lafayette raised most of the money for their library privately. I don’t think Concord has the socio-economic makings to host $5,000 per ticket art shows or wine tastings. You really need to research before you speak as it shows you have no clue what you are talking about.

Also MOST city employees DO NOT have a salary of $100,000 and up. Again do some research of ALL employees not just management and PD. I am sure their are clerks and janitors that wished they had that kind of salary.

You are sooooo full of crap I bet your eyes are brown.

ON DA December 12, 2017 at 11:02 PM

Well Folk you are clue less as to demographics social structures or anything even remotely resembling humanity. Keep your master to yourself.

Cowellian December 12, 2017 at 8:58 AM

I just read that SF Mayor Ed Lee died.

Elvis December 12, 2017 at 1:39 PM

He decided to #BoycottSanFrancisco too.

Lars Anderson December 12, 2017 at 3:25 PM

Well Folks, the economy is surging, unemployment is down as low as it’s been in 45 years. Given this why aren’t the City of Concord’s tax coffers filling up? Why hasn’t the city rehired the workers laid off in the recession? 150 city employees got pink slips in the Great recession, services were just gutted. The recession is long, long over but you’d never know it at the City of Concord. The city is still broke, only the bond measure is keeping the budget balanced – for now anyway. The problem, in my view, is the ludicrously high wages and pensions being paid to Concord police officers, along with all these management jobs created at the PD. According to the city budget document spending on the police department is ballooning from 42 million in 2014 to 60 million by 2018. Surrounding cities aren’t seeing these huge hikes in PD spending. Where is the crime wave that would justify all this new spending on the PD? Concord had 2 or three murders this year. Our city doesn’t have a lot of crime – it never has – so what’s with all this extra spending on the PD? The extra spending on the PD, the sky high wages, the overly generous pensions, the proliferation of management jobs at the PD – these developments have all been brought to us by the Concord Police labor union – they have placed stooges on the council, like Hoffmiester, McGallian ,Leone, and Obringer. For many years you’ve had these police buffs on the council (see opulent PD station, fanciest public building in town), and they have given the PD a blank check to spend what they want – crime has nothing to do with the expenditures. Basically what goes on in Concord is this; the Concord PD labor union looks at the tax revenue coming in and they then get council members to hike their wages accordingly, and the PD also schemes to create these management jobs, jobs that will allow the lucky holders of these jobs to retire with $140,000 a year pensions. As a result of this activity by the PD the city of Concord never really gets ahead – there is no money for anything, just our costly police department. A new library, quality recreation programs, even filling pot holes or fixing up the parks – these things can’t get funded because the PD eats up all the tax revenue. The PD is so greedy they even schemed to get in on this infrastructure bond money, they got some of the bond money to fight gangs, even though Concord, like PH and WC, doesn’t really have gangs, just a few wannabees. Laura Hoffmiester, more than anybody, is responsible for this sorry state of affairs. She’s a long time city employee – she believes city employees all should make bank, they should get these fantastic pensions – she herself is getting a healthy one from Clayton, and she will begetting another pension down the line from Concord as well. For city employees it’s all about the pensions, but also, in the modern era, they get unusually high wages as well, at least compared to what the average Concord resident makes. The big problem with the city of Concord, in my view, is wages and benefits are just too high (see the budget draining PD), they are so high there is almost nothing left for anything else. Given this, why have a city at all? Does the city exist to provide services and benefits – like quality parks and recreation programs and filled pot holes, or does it exist to pay the artificially high wages and benefits city workers in Concord get? In comparing Concord to surrounding cities, I think you can make the case the City of Concord now functions solely to employ city workers, they get everything (see PD labor union members), and residents get a whole lot of nothing, unless they vote to tax themselves, which city residents did with the infrastructure bond measure. How else can you explain this weird situation where the economy is booming yet Concord is completely dead-ass broke? How good does the economy have to get before Concord residents see something for thier tax dollars? Simple common sense tells you if the city was paying more moderate wages to city workers tax coffers would start filling up, but in Concord the PD labor union – and Laura Hoffmiester – they don’t like that idea AT ALL. A new library – paid with tax dollars city residents have been paying year after year, that’s radical in Concord’s wacky political culture, a culture that is steeped in corruption and cronyism. In Concord city leaders, like Hoffmiester, would rather see all the money spent on salaries and wages. Hoffmiester and her cronies are aware – well aware – they city couldn’t afford the huge raises given to the PD officers awhile back, but they went ahead and granted them anyway because they just want to stay in power – they believe the PD labor union is the source of their power – so you have this situation – year after year – where the city is dead broke, thanks to Laura Hoffmiester.
In thinking about Laura Hoffmiester’s many years on the council, and her lifetime “work” at enhancing pensions and wages of city workers in Concord, and enhancing her own pensions – she will have two coming when she retires (if she ever does retire), I wonder if her mothers small pension is the reason. Hoffmiesters mother, as some may know, was a long time city of Concord employee. I noticed Hoffmiester’s mother’s pension is rather paltry, at least compared to these whopper pensions you see now, like retired PD officers Robin Heineman’s ($160,000 a year after 27 years on the force). Does Hoffmiester;s mothers tiny pension explain why she has worked so hard to get Concord PD officers these gargantuan pensions, and is this the reason she herself will never get off the council? My theory is Hoffmiester is exacting revenge on us taxpayers because Mom got such a lousy pension. That’s a theory I’ve developed. I mean I find it odd a city council person would spend all their time scheming to get city employees raises! Council people, and the City manager, should be fighting tooth and nail to keep these city employees wages down, that’s their job, their job isn’t to play Santa Claus to city workers (see Concord PD wages!).
Getting back to my original post, the city of Concord can afford to build a new library – the money is there, you just need to do some rearranging, you need to stop squandering all this money on the PD stupidly and needlessly. You only want to spend on the PD what you have to, not a dollar more. But in Concord, thanks to Hoffmiester and her cynical cronies , the opposite is being done, it’s X-Mass in July for the PD year round. The key, in my view, to getting the City of Concord back on track – to getting the city to work for residents, rather than city public labor unions, is to give Hoffmiester and these other public employee labor union stooges, McGallian and Leone, the broom. We need responsible people on the council – people that look out for the taxpayers – what we have know is public employee labor union stooges. So yes Well Folks, I strongly will be supporting the recall that is planned in 2018 – you should too. We need to save our city from these spendthrifts that sit on the council.

Well Folks December 12, 2017 at 10:37 PM

PD is a fraction of the employees. Please show me a clerk, gardener or janitor that make over $100,000 per year……Oh you can’t.

Also I asked for you to provide info about the “recall” group. A couple of years ago Hope Johnson researched such a move and found it economically not feasible. Does this group have money to print petitions, have an attorney review said petitions for proper language, money for filing fees? There is more to a recall or any petition drive than just getting signatures. So who is this group and how does one contact them.

Again the cities that got Libraries did no use general funding. It has either been special bonds, special taxes or private fund raising. Concord is lower middle class and you need to get use to that. Concord will never be WC, Clayton, Lafayette. It just doesn’t have the socio-economic makeup of those cities. Those cities all have people making 6 & 7 figure salaries while Concord has maybe 20% of the population making that kind of money, 60% probably makes mid to upper 5 figure salaries and the remainder making the lower 5 figure range. Concord has sizeable population getting various help from the Gov’t. You do not find that In WC, Clayton or Lafayette. It’s all in demographics and perhaps you need to research exactly what type of people make up Concord. It sure as hell is not upper middle class/upper class white folks.

Jojo Potato December 12, 2017 at 5:37 PM

Received the Nutshell in the mail today. That’s the WC quarterly newsletter. In a real tear jerker article about housing costs is the “fact” that affordable housing is defined as less than 30% of income. Since when and defined by who? My first house I bought in Oakland in 1980 had payments that were about 50%. And we made it and had a kid too. This probably sounds like grumpy old man to some of you but we did it all ourselves from renovating the house to walking to the bus stop. The only avocadoes we got were from a friend’s tree. Sorry people but you got to take care of yourselves instead of crying for help.

Lars Anderson December 13, 2017 at 11:13 AM

Well Folks, the city has like 320 employees, the PD has 150 officers. All the members of the Concord POA will be qualify for 90% of their pay after 30 years on the job, thus almost half of City of Concord employees will retire with paychecks for life. When you retire and you get 90% of your final salary you are getting a paycheck for life. Huge amounts of money have to set aside to pay for these gargantuan pensions, the city is broke because of it. A 90,000 a year PD officer get like 50 grand set aside for the pension –
you do the math. All of this was brought to us by the POA labor union and bad city council leadership, like Hoffmiester and her cronies. These POA members don’t live in Concord, they come here to work here mostly. They are spoiled beyond belief, as I have been reporting. The dispatchers, I should mention make 90K a year! Look, there just isn’t that much crime in Concord, so the work load of the average police officer isn’t even very much, they give out DUI’s, drive to mall to arrest shoplifters, they break up domestic fights once in awhile. The leadership in our city continues to pour astronomical amounts money down the PD rat hole to fight what amounts to be a pretend crime wave.
To justify this wasteful spending city leaders periodically do these surveys where people tell the city they place high value on public safety, the city then uses these surveys to justify spending more and more money on the PD, and the end result is the PD has a complete stranglehold on the city budget, there is nothing left for anything, including a new library. the average resident has no understanding of public finance, what it cost to keep city residents safe. You don’t have to spend the entire city budget on the PD – WC doesn’t do that, they spend 25 million on the PD and 20 million on Arts and Leisure. Contrast that with Concord, Concord spends 60 million on the PD and 5 million on Recreation (Arts gets practically nothing). When you compare and contrast you can see Concords number 1 priority is to arrest and jail residents – as many as possible – and to do it in the most expensive way that you can (see ridiculously featherbedded PD).
In the City of Concord residents are getting the short shift, compared to surrounding cities (see new libraries in surrounding cities, robust rec programs, city funded theatres etc.). In Concord we are funding an expensive, perpetual “war on crime” – even though we just don’t have that much crime. In fact, what is really happening is the big wigs at the city, and the big wigs at the PD, most of whom even don’t live in Concord -, are taking care of themselves. The big wigs at the city – who are always coming and going and have little real interest in improving our city – have rigged things so they – not residents – get all the benefits of the city. Just look at the fantastic wages city employees make, and then factor in what we residents – who are footing the bill – get. We don’t get much, that’s clear, we had to vote to raise our taxes to get some playground equipment at local parks. When I say the the City of Concord is steeped in corruption and cronyism, that’s what I speak of. We keep being told Concord is broke – even during a time when the economy is booming – there is no money for anything, and then you read the budget and you see pensions are bankrupting the city. Who is to blame for this situation? I blame Laura Hoffmiester and her cronies, these folks talk a good game, but at the end of the day the city is broke because of their dumb decisions. Hoffmiester is a do-nothing caretaker council person – she’s been in office forever, won’t leave, she does nothing but make excuses why the city is broke, why we can’t get a new library – she can’t even figure out how to get one with this 3 billion development happening at the navy base! Talk about inept.

ON DA December 13, 2017 at 2:14 PM

Um Mr. Anderson I believe the dept. is a non profit agency. Instead of focusing on basic mathematics your efforts could be channeled toward a forward beacon.

Well Folks December 13, 2017 at 5:24 PM

Lars – at the rate it is going the CNWS will never happen. They were suppose to start working on infrastructure this past summer and they still haven’t submitted the final plan.
And city employees do not make “fantastic” wages. You need a does of reality. In private sector there are holiday bonuses, company paid parties, profit sharing, other bonuses. Gov’t employees get none of those. I’m still wondering what the bug up you but is. Failed attempt at politics? Police or fire academy washout? Did pass probations at a gov’t agency? You talk a lot but really know so little. What are your credentials when it comes to gov’t finance? I am a retired gov’t accountant. What is your background when it comes to understanding governmental finance and how budgets and funding work within an agency? General fund agencies like police can not turn a profit. Any general fund agency must be at a zero balance at the end of the fiscal year.
And you must stop comparing Concord with WC, PH or Lafayette. The demographics are so different. Concord is middle to lower middle class. The other 3 are upper middle to upper class. You are comparing oranges to rubber chickens.

Recall 'Em All December 13, 2017 at 5:36 PM

Lars – There is a new class available that teaches brevity. The new communication model is shorter, more concise – think Twitter. I heard that there are Communication Coaches available to help people who want to communicate more effectively in a shorter space.

Kentucky Derby December 13, 2017 at 6:25 PM

Concord is comfortable middle class to lower middle class. Clayton is a middle class town, but would like to think they’re higher. Walnut Creek is a middle class town, with upper middle class sections (Northgate, etc.). Pleasant Hill is a middle class town. Lafayette is middle to upper middle class, depending on the resident. Upper class would be Atherton and Hillsborough.

Divided and Concord December 13, 2017 at 9:07 PM

I want to thank Hope Johnson for speaking up at the Parks, Recreation & Open Space meeting tonight and shedding light on the City of Concord’s attempt to give preferential treatment to the Dana Estates and Bishops Estates Neighborhoods. They put on the agenda a discussion of a proposal to prepare a zoning amendment for the Green Frame Linear Park between WillowPass Road and Bailey Road from the current designation of
“Study” District. Those neighborhoods are trying to get the green space removed from the area plan so that they can guarantee themselves the green space. Joan Ryan admitted that the purpose of the rezoning was to give these neighborhoods peace of mind. This is so wrong!!!!!

KAD December 13, 2017 at 9:25 PM

No one from my neighborhood asked to have anything removed from the Specific Plan. It was as much a surprise to us and it was to everyone else. Where are you getting your information? Just guessing? You guessed wrong. If you know anything for sure, please share with all of us.

KAD December 13, 2017 at 9:30 PM

Divided and Concord – As a matter of fact, we feel that the City did this to limit the amount of Linear Park we are getting to 275 feet. The Green Frame was to go up to 450 feet. I said this at the Neighborhood meeting that was held on 11/30 at the Senior Center. Then they added a road that touches that Green Frame. If you think we are happy, you are wrong.

Hope Johnson December 13, 2017 at 11:51 PM

I will certainly mention this as well at the next CAC and Council meetings. None of the green frame should be removed from the Specific Plan so that it is all subject to review by the CAC, Planning Commission, and Council. It should all be included in public outreach meetings and in the financial portions of the project. If the bordering areas think they are being railroaded into a smaller green frame, then that is another argument for keeping it in the Specific Plan.

However, this section between Willow Pass and Bailey is now the only portion of the green frame left – everything else has either been completely removed (such as removal of a buffer zone between the Bart parking lot and East Sun Terrace) or reduced to a much smaller size (such as at the Coast Guard housing). By removing this section from the Specific Plan, the neighborhoods between Willow Pass and Bailey are being guaranteed a green buffer that no other existing neighborhood currently has in the plan. And they will have the opportunity to increase the green space size within that area remaining in the specific plan. Joan Ryan and Guy Bjerke specifically told the Park & Rec Commission at its meeting tonight that the zoning amendment was being done to appease the neighborhoods about receiving at least the minimum 275 foot buffer zone. For the other neighborhoods, this appears to be preferential treatment with green space. If staff and the Director are outright lying about this, that’s a real problem.

Hope Johnson December 14, 2017 at 12:10 AM

Just to clarify – I want the neighborhoods to have this green frame. It just needs to stay in the Specific Plan. And Concord should not be paying for the removal out of its general fund. Guy Bjerke told the Park & Rec Commission that Lennar would be reimbursing Concord for costs incurred in amending the zoning (it would require its own CEQA) but after the meeting he said he didn’t know how much Lennar would be willing to reimburse to the city.

Anonymous December 14, 2017 at 9:26 AM

The green frame will be a disaster. The city can’t afford to maintain that much land so it will become a giant hangout for druggies and the homeless. At least having a road that touches it will allow for some patrols.

I hope the residents of Bishop Estates et all enjoy the tent city they are fighting so hard to create.

KAD December 14, 2017 at 1:03 AM

Hope Johnson – One of the things I keep saying to the City (all departments having presentations presented to them) is that Lennar MUST be required to identify all changes they are making to the original Area Plan. They are not doing that. That is how that new road got on the Specific Plan. They did not identify it as a change to the original Area Plan. Too many people spent too many hours getting that Area Plan in the General Plan to have Lennar make changes to it.

KAD December 14, 2017 at 1:16 AM

By the way Hope, you know how to get ahold of me. I have never lied or tried to mislead you.

Divided and Concord December 14, 2017 at 9:06 AM

No green frames should be excluded from the area plan to protect particular neighborhoods. If this is one Concord then we all get treated equitably. KAD, I’m sorry you don’t like the proposed road but guess what? We don’t like getting the majority of the roads shoved our way to route traffic OUR way. We don’t like getting our green space eliminated (not reduced but eliminated). The neighborhoods in North Concord are FAR MORE affected than your neighborhoods because of this development. We get the high density, the noise, the pollution, the construction, etc. and most likely the decline in home values. The other side of Concord will get a regional park and cul-dec-sac homes. How equitable.

Anonymous December 14, 2017 at 9:39 AM

The Times has had articles about the man arrested for murdering a little girl in Antioch in 1980. He has a history of raping and hurting women and has been to prison several times. He raped and then killed the girl with a single stab wound to the heart and threw her body away.

Our newly appointed DA does not believe in the death penalty and can not make up her mind what to do.

We don’t need this DA . We need one that cares about victims and their families.

Kirkwood December 14, 2017 at 12:26 PM

I’ve been retired from the City of Concord for a dozen years. Concord’s wages were always lower than other Bay Area cities. We had a weak union and the best we could do was 1% or 2% increases during contract negotiations when others were getting 3 – 4%. All we could get were perks that didn’t immediately cost much, like days off, pension language, etc. Concord uses Cal Pers for our pensions and Cal Pers invests our contributions in the stock market. Back when these contracts were written the market averages were much higher than subsequent years, and in fact the fund Managers have performed poorly in recent years. There’s also been huge, unanticipated increases in medical premiums. Changes to the pension system must come slowly as to not affect the workers who were promised the benefits they worked all those years for. My pension is only a fraction of the numbers I see thrown around here.
I’ve been retired from the City of Concord for a dozen years. Concord’s wages were always lower than other Bay Area cities. We had a weak union and the best we could do was 1% or 2% increases during contract negotiations when others were getting 3 – 4%. All we could get were perks that didn’t immediately cost much, like days off, pension language, etc. Concord uses Cal Pers for our pensions and Cal Pers invests our contributions in the stock market. Back when these contracts were written the market averages were much higher than subsequent years, and in fact the fund Managers have performed poorly in recent years. There’s also been huge, unanticipated increases in medical premiums. Changes to the pension system must come slowly as to not affect the workers who were promised the benefits they worked for. My pension is only a fraction of the numbers I see thrown around here.
There is a skeleton staff of skilled full timers who actually maintain the City’s infrastructure, and it seems like population of City Hall grows as the number of maintenance folks shrinks.
Incidentally, most of the City workers you see on the streets are seasonal, low paid, no benefit part timers. You can bet they’re simply working for a wage and take no pride in their work.

Well Folks December 14, 2017 at 4:43 PM

Kirkwood -Actually the City of Concord has better wage & benefit packages than the county. But I appreciate you setting some folks straight. I spent 32+ years at the county, retired out as mid-management and my salary never hit $100,000+ and my retirement 65% of my outgoing pay and health care is expensive and sucks. Bottom line the big dogs get the big $$$$ but there are far less big dogs than peons.
Here is to people like you & me speaking the truth.

Kirkwood December 14, 2017 at 12:32 PM

The above msg. is the first dozen lines. Sorry for the doubled up message – I didn’t scroll all the way to the bottom while editing!

Wondering December 14, 2017 at 12:39 PM

Is Jeff Kasper still slithering around our city free and clear?

Fyi December 15, 2017 at 5:54 AM

Good question.

KAD December 14, 2017 at 4:52 PM

Hope Johnson, Have you talked to anyone from Dana Estates to see if they are aware of someone from their neighborhood asking for the Green Frame to be removed from the Specific Plan? They have the largest stretch of the Green Frame. Bishop Estates is not that large. Did you ever come by our neighborhood?

Hope Johnson December 14, 2017 at 6:19 PM

I am not the one who posted that any specific neighborhood asked for the green frame to be removed from the Specific Plan. My comments have been directed to equity for all neighborhoods in the Specific Plan, and especially because most of the green space has been removed from the North Concord area. All of the property on the CNWS should be subject to review by the bodies authorized to change, vote, or make recommendations on the Specific Plan. Have you been to our neighborhoods to ask how we feel about that? Your comments appear to be focused mostly on the addition of the access road behind your area which is not part of the zoning amendment I am addressing.

Hope Johnson December 14, 2017 at 6:25 PM

I meant service road not access road in post above.

KAD December 14, 2017 at 7:17 PM

Hope – You are right but I heard you speaking at the meeting last night and at the City Council meeting, You said there was 1 neighborhood that was getting special treatment. (paraphrasing) Thus implying to me, and maybe not correct, that Bishop Estates asked for special treatment. That was not the case.

Fyi December 15, 2017 at 5:46 AM

And you want Hope on the city council, extremely bad idea. Always negative, always a fight, doesn’t work well with others.

Silva December 15, 2017 at 12:05 PM

Lennar plants?🤔 Builder’s union trolls?😱 My son’s an equipment operator, and there are many interested parties salivating over the whole scheme.😎

KAD December 15, 2017 at 1:15 PM

I have commented, as others have too, for Sun Terrance to get a buffer zone.
At the moment, I am focused on a new road that is touching the buffer. It is not a service/access road, it is a cut through road that will be heavily used by East County residents. Also, no one on the CAC noticed it because Lennar and City Staff did not identify it as a change to the original Area Plan that is in the General Plan. It is in the new Special Plan going forward for Studies. That was wrong.

Anonymous December 15, 2017 at 2:05 PM

Again, the buffer is going to be a disaster. Hopefully North Concord can avoid it. If you want a sense of what the buffer will be like, look at the wastelands that are along freeways and drainage canals.

Concord Mike December 15, 2017 at 8:49 AM

Traffic on Port Chicago and surrounding streets will be a nightmare if Lennar builds housing before adequate new retail is in place. Where will thousands of new residents go to the grocery store or pharmacy?

Need to consider not only what gets built and where, but also when.

Elvis December 15, 2017 at 12:23 PM

That religious cult in Walnut Creek is all for the localized marijuana outlets. They want you a stoned and comliant populace. And, don’t be surprised if Willie Brown brings San Francisco’s porn industry to Concord to espace the high rent districts in SF.

Divided and Concord December 15, 2017 at 1:38 PM

KAD look at the materials provided for the Dec. 13 Parks, Rec and Open Space Meeting. There was a neighborhood meeting on Nov. 30. at the Senior Center. Denkinger Road was mentioned and references to low density housing height limits. Joan Ryan admitted that the re-zoning proposal was to give those neighbors peace of mind. Which neighborhoods live between Willow Pass Road and Bailey Road?

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