The future of Alamo will be a topic of discussion at this Tuesday's meeting of the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors. Members will be considering a resolution put forth by District 3 Supervisor Mary N. Piepho calling for the establishment of a Municipal Advisory Council (MAC) for Alamo.
An unincorporated part of Contra Costa County, Alamo is largely governed by the county, although there are several committees that advise on issues facing the community. If a MAC is instituted, most if not all of those committees would go by the wayside, as their duties and responsibilities would be carried out by the seven members of the MAC.
Over the past two years, residents in Alamo were divided over the issue of incorporation. A group of residents went through the process of getting the issue onto the ballot, and in March the voters overwhelmingly turned down incorporation.
In May, Piepho addressed the issue of a MAC, an issue she had espoused prior to the beginning of the incorporation movement. Piepho said she did not bring up the MAC during the incorporation debate as she did not want to unduly influence the vote.
Piepho brought the MAC up again with the members of the Alamo Community Council, a group made up of the members of the various committees working in Alamo. Since that time, the group has met with Piepho and her Chief of Staff to talk about the issues surrounding the establishment of a MAC and the rules under which it would run.
ACC members, as well as a number of Alamo residents, expressed strong concerns about a MAC and their own lack of control over who would serve on such a body.
Also at issue is the fate of the San Ramon Valley Regional Planning Commission. The SRVRPC oversees development in this portion of the county. The commission meets in San Ramon and examines new developments before making a decision on whether or not they will be sent on to the Board of Supervisors.
A county committee charged with looking at the SRVRPC and another similar commission in the East Bay recommended that if a MAC is established, the SRVRPC be disbanded.
Both issues will come to a head Tuesday as the Board of Supervisors looks at the creation of a MAC and the dissolution of the SRVRPC. The resolution being presented Tuesday will allow the creation of the MAC, allow its members to advocate on Parks and Recreation issues to the Town of Danville and the San Ramon Valley Unified School District, and instruct Supervisor Piepho to begin the application and interview process for the seven members of the council.
The resolution reads, "The District 3 Supervisor is recommending the establishment of a MAC for Alamo to provide a focused voice to advise the District 3 Supervisor and the Board of Supervisors on issues and concerns related to services provided by the County or other local agencies located within its boundaries."
It further states that creating a MAC will reduce community and county staff costs currently charged to Alamo committees for staff time. Further resolutions will abolish both the Zone 36 Lighting and Landscaping Committee and the R-7A Parks and Recreation Committee, as the duties of those committees would be performed by the MAC.
Some discussion has been had regarding putting police services committees such as P-2B and P-5 under the auspices of the MAC, but the resolution does not reflect any change in those committees.
In a separate matter, the Board of Supervisors will be examining the recommendation of the Conservation and Development Department regarding the continuation of the SRVRPC. Both the County Planning Commission and the East Bay Regional Planning Commission are recommending that the organizations be dissolved at the end of their terms this year.
The recommendation cites a fiscal savings of $300-$400 per month in paying for the meeting room, as well as unspecified administrative and staff costs.
Several Alamo residents have petitioned area communities as well as Supervisor Piepho to retain the SRVRPC, as a means of allowing residents a local voice in the planning process.
The Board of Supervisors meeting begins at 9:30 a.m. in the board chambers of the county's Administrative Building at 651 Pine St. in Martinez.