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A look back at the last few months during Mornings with the Mayor

Original post made on Oct 8, 2013

Mayor Newell Arnerich, along with Town Manager Joe Calabrigo, Recreation Services Manager Henry Perezalonso and Police Chief Steve Simpkins met with residents early Friday morning at the town's Senior Center to provide an overview of recent events and developments in Danville.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, October 7, 2013, 2:56 PM

Comments (13)

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Posted by concerned resident
a resident of Danville
on Oct 8, 2013 at 9:32 am

Did anyone ask Mr. Arnerich why the ABAG list of "Priority Development Areas" ("PDAs") for high density housing shows downtown Danville as a PDA and why Danville's government refuses to put the issue of Danville's ABAG membership on its agenda despite repeated requests by Danville residents?

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Posted by Danville Resident
a resident of Danville
on Oct 8, 2013 at 10:28 am

@ Concerned Resident -- GREAT QUESTION!!! Would love to know if anyone asked and how he responded. I cannot comprehend how he and the city council can keep avoiding this topic that is of such concern to so many of their constituents.

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Posted by Huh?
a resident of Danville
on Oct 8, 2013 at 12:08 pm

Possibly because it's only an issue to the far-right lunatic fringe who are convinced that we're all going to be overrun by U.N. Agenda 21 mandated slums full of (you know -- them.)

Granted, Danville has more than its share of right wing loonies, but there's still not enough of them to justify a public handholding session where they can vent their paranoia while the adults in the room sit around going "There, there. Everything will be all right. Just take a deep breath and try to calm down."

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Posted by RUkidding
a resident of Danville
on Oct 8, 2013 at 9:31 pm

Well Huh?, more of your silver tongue bull ! Could it be that you are related to our infamous Mayor ? Obviously you share the same "let them eat cake" we are the adults and know what's best attitude and demeanor.

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Posted by democrat
a resident of Danville
on Oct 9, 2013 at 9:49 am

@Huh: You are grossly uniformed. Local control over land use decisions is a long-standing principal of government. It is not a left-wing v. right wing issue. If you had gone to the Planning Commission and Town Council hearings on the General Plan, you would realize that. I, for one, am a Democrat.

Why should ABAG, an unelected regional commission be telling Danville it has to have, for example, 3-story apartment buildings to satisfy ABAG's ever-increasing demands for higher densities? Why should ABAG have the power to force Danville to look for ever more sites to redesignate from office/commercial or low-density residential to high-density housing?

As more and more of downtown and other areas of Danville are converted from their existing uses (Danville is pretty much built out already), ABAG's effect will become more and more damaging. We are losing office space to housing right now. That in itself disproves one of the claimed bases for ABAG's demands: to provide housing for the "workforce". Hey, ABAG, if the office buildings---i.e. jobs---disappear,why do we need the housing?

Let Danvillians control land use decisions in Danville.

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Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on Oct 9, 2013 at 11:05 am

Have to agree with the post above. Huh?, I really don't get why you keep writing posts that constantly conflate political leaning with opposition to land use changes, and ABAG policies that are detrimental to our town. It's pretty clear you understand the schools here are full, and that you understand that none of the developers are contributing for new school construction. So I think what RU Kidding implies is a fair question - do you have an association with one of our planners, the mayor, or one of the current five council members? If not, why the condescending attitude on this subject? I would say if anything, the actions of the council and city planners seem to be right wing in that they are pro-development, no?
For most of the last few decades I have been registered as a green party (cue laughter), so I am hardly a Michelle Bachman fan club member.

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Posted by Huh?
a resident of Danville
on Oct 9, 2013 at 11:17 am

democrat, you need to educate yourself. ABAG isn't the driving force here - state law is. State law provides that local jurisdictions cannot pass laws prohibiting less affluent people from living in the city, even if the "locals" want to keep them out. (When you confront the reality of what you're asking for it doesn't look that pretty - does it?) Every jurisdiction is required by state law to do its part in providing housing - called a "housing need allocation." ABAG is just given the administrative duty of negotiating the numbers and verifying the details among the various local jurisdictions - cities, counties, etc. in the Bay Area. Somebody has to do that. Who would you choose? (They are also tasked with coordinating traffic planning. Since traffic doesn't always stay within a single jurisdiction I'd hope you could see the need for some regional oversight there, either.)

Every City is required to have a general plan which does not absolutely prohibit low cost housing from being built. Mind you - the City isn't required to actually build any - it just can't make it impossible for a private property owner to do it if they want to. ***This is not new.*** Danville has complied with that state law for years. Sites have been "designated." Do you see any slums around here? Where's your "stack and pack"? This is reality, not some overwrought theory.

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Posted by Huh?
a resident of Danville
on Oct 9, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Derek, I have no "association" with city government or developers. I'm just tired of seeing people spout off on stuff based on factually erroneous assumptions about what is actually happening. The sense of entitlement among the locals in the San Ramon Valley, and the limitless rage that seems to well up at the suggestion that we are part of a larger society and are not free to simply declare ourselves exempt from contributing to the solutions to the problems which face us now and will continue to do so in the future irritates me.

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Posted by Christa
a resident of Danville
on Oct 10, 2013 at 8:30 am

Huh? Is the town fool and proves it regularly with his socialist blatherings. Better he move to Berserkly of San Freaksisco where his diatribes would be worshiped.

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Posted by Huh?
a resident of Danville
on Oct 10, 2013 at 2:09 pm

You're right, Christa. What could be more foolish than to respond to paranoid rants with references to actual facts? Reality has a well-known liberal bias; it should leave town, too.

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Posted by RUkidding
a resident of Danville
on Oct 11, 2013 at 8:45 am

Huh, that's a a pretty "high horse you ride". Be careful that you don't fall off into the world of reality.............

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Posted by Local property owner
a resident of Montair Elementary School
on Oct 11, 2013 at 9:06 am

The reality is "Huh?" that ABAG is not some benign commission merely taking numbers from the state and passing them along. There is some bottom up figuring going on from ABAG to the state. There is also the density issue. ABAG isn't merely giving numbers of low-income units to Danville, it is also requiring that the densities be higher and higher. Why? Because merely designating land for multi-family won't satisfy them. They know that land in Danville is very expensive and that it won't be economical to build multi-family unless the density is high enough.

And don't use that same "we don't have to build, just designate" argument. If you had attended the GP hearings, you would have noticed that one landowner had his attorney argue for his property to redesignated so that he could build a multi-story condominium complex at the corner of El Cerro and El Pintado.

Danville people should have the right to keep their town low-rise. Many of us started our working lives in San Francisco or Oakland when we were desirous of living an urban lifestyle. Diversity is good, Huh?. Every town should not have to be urban and high-rise just because it falls within ABAG's purview.

Where do you live, Huh? Think how you would feel if suddenly your property and your neighbors' is redesignated out from under you to satisfy ABAG's mandates. Would you not care? Would you be secure in the knowledge that Newell Arnerich told you that none of your neighbors would decide to make a bundle by building a 3-story apartment unit next to yours and reap the value from all the other neighbors' properties?

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Posted by Huh?
a resident of Danville
on Oct 11, 2013 at 9:25 am

Like I said, local property owner: State law prohibits a community from zoning or other laws which prevent lower income people from living in that community. You can stamp your feet and complain about being forced to allow "those people" to live in your "perfect" town, or you can deal with it in a practical manner, like an adult.

If a person owns private property and wants to develop it with higher density, pragmatic issues such as traffic impacts, school demand, etc. need to be addressed. That's why local government has to designate those areas where it would have the fewest adverse impacts - and can deny that zoning where it doesn't meet those standards. Is the corner of El Cerro and El Pintado an appropriate site for whatever the owner wants to build? I don't know. That's why there are hearings and studies and all the other "regulatory burden" folks complain about when they're not trying to stop something they don't like. But simply demanding that local government defy state law to satisfy your exclusionary demands city-wide won't cut it.

I understand: you feel that living in Danville gives you the right to keep out anyone who you feel is "undesireable." Less-than-affluent? Make 'em live somewhere else, and drive into town to wait the tables, mow the lawns, man the registers. But state law prohibits that, just like it prohibits keeping out religious or ethnic minorities.

The mandate doesn't originate with ABAG. It's state law. And everyone's densities are going up. The population keeps growing. What were once distant suburbs (like Walnut Creek) are becoming satellite cities. Nobody is "conspiring" against Danville. In fact, Danville is situated in such a manner as to have less new housing development required than most places. (If you've done your homework you know that.) But we can't just say "No."

Again: these are facts. I understand that lots of people these days feel that facts are optional.

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