I don't want Alamo to change - I want Alamo to keep its semi-rural character. Looking around our community today, although I see change by degree, I think we Alamo citizens have done a pretty good job of advocating with Contra Costa County to keep Alamo free of dramatic change.
But we can't keep the county from changing, and we haven't been able to stop the larger economy from shrinking. Looking forward from the county's newly disclosed $1.7 billion unfunded liability for employee benefits, its past three-year history of cutting Sheriff's Department services, its need for further service cuts and new revenue-generating development in the unincorporated areas, and its burden (and burden rate) of thousands of employees, I believe Alamo must become its own town to survive fiscally.
The Town of Alamo would contract for most workers and eliminate crippling employee benefit costs, realize all revenues from property tax increases on Alamo's older homes protected by Proposition 13, and write its own General Plan to prevent the freeway-accommodating widening of Alamo roads and intersections and the potential for rezoning to higher housing densities.
To prevent dramatic change to Alamo, we need to incorporate.
Bruce Campbell (Alamo homeowner for 25 years)
Turning on red
Re the "No Turn on Red" Alamo traffic restriction: Alamo residents who live on the west side of Danville Boulevard with access from Stone Valley Road West are happy to have the new "No Turn on Red" restriction on Danville Boulevard. Cars coming from the south on Danville Boulevard planning to turn right/east onto Stone Valley Road often would cruise through the intersection against the red light, directly in front of us who had waited for our green light to get through the intersection. Because of how the intersection was re-configured some years ago, the two cars often were trying to be in the same lane at once, one to move right to access I-680 south and the other to move left to continue on Stone Valley Road.
When Alamo Plaza was expanded years ago and that intersection was formed, there was a traffic sign at that southeast corner of Danville Boulevard for those cars (northbound on Danville Boulevard, turning right onto Stone Valley Road) to "Yield to Traffic when Signal is Red." It was effective in smoothing traffic flow. When the "porkchop" configuration was formed at the intersection, that sign was removed. It caused a confrontational situation having two cars claiming the same position at the same time: one through a red light and one through a green light.
Since the "No Turn on Red" sign has been installed, the situation is good. However, there is no need for the traffic on Danville Boulevard (northbound, turning right) to wait during the time traffic moves east on Stone Valley Road. Pedestrians are barred from crossing then. Pedestrians may only cross with the westbound Stone Valley Road traffic. Limiting the sign to a "Yield to Traffic when Signal is Red" may be a preferable option to the "No Turn on Red."
The other restriction sign is helpful, at the northeast corner of Danville Boulevard. In the past I have had cars which cruised through the red signal refuse to let me move into the right lane to turn into the veterinary/dental office building lot next to the Shell station.
By the way, residents of a City of Alamo would have solved this situation a long time ago - right here in Alamo.
Margaret Elliott, Alamo
NO on incorporation
Would any intelligent, successful business person purchase a business based on 2-year-old financials? Financials accumulated at the height of a business boom? And financials not compiled by a reputable accounting firm with years of experience but compiled by an engineering firm? Please, give us a break, incorporation advocates; we're grown-ups, not fools.
Don't try to sell us a glowing future based on your Rosy Scenarios, especially in the face of a world wide recession and huge funding cutbacks by the State of California to the cities and counties. You constantly tell us that the County Government neglects us and ignores our wishes but you even use their superlative maintenance of our roads as a reason why we, as a town, won't need to worry about their condition. So, the county neglects us but gives us great roads? Make up your minds, either they do their jobs or they don't. Don't try to scam us. We're adults.
Oh, and no area can be simply annexed by another, such as you constantly try to scare us with the notion that Walnut Creek or Danville could just take us over. It requires a petition of 25 percent of registered voters, a LAFCO hearing and then a majority vote of the people in the area to be annexed. Would you vote to be part of Danville or Walnut Creek? I thought not.
Tell us the truth. That's what we want to hear. Vote NO on Incorporation.
Denise M. Padovani, Alamo