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AIA Board ponders role in future of Alamo

Original post made on Mar 13, 2009

Just 10 days after the defeat of a three-year-long campaign to incorporate Alamo, members of the Alamo Improvement Association (AIA) met Thursday to map out their strategy for moving forward in a post-election Alamo.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, March 13, 2009, 1:12 AM

Comments (19)

Posted by Hal Bailey, a resident of another community
on Mar 13, 2009 at 4:36 pm

Dear Dolores,

Geoff Gillette deserves special thanks for capturing the core of discussions last night at the Alamo Improvement Association (AIA) Board Meeting. In two discussions, the board and visitors, including many Alamo town council candidates, discussed what happened in the incorporation election and then discussed "What's Next" with specific focus on what the AIA can be to a greater majority in the Alamo region.

Mike Gibson established an excellent concept of a liaison committee that would meet with our District 3 supervisor monthly and Chief of Staff likely more often to get county short-term to long-term plans, and their updates, for the Alamo region. One could imagine an expanded participation by resident counsel and government experts as participants in such a committee and a broader charter to create liaison with all governments in the Alamo region.

Roger Smith discussed the expansion of relationships with county departments to allow the AIA planning committee to have greater participation and communication with the county. One could imagine an expanded participation that would create sub-committees for infrastructure planning with public works, transportation planning with appropriate county and regional organizations, recreational planning with EBRPD, and several similar teams seeking liaison with governments in our region.

Grace Schmidt discussed focus on roads usage for volume flow of commute traffic through the Alamo region transportation corridors. One could imagine a transit committee that is liaison to many levels of government including our neighbor, Assembly Member Joan Buchanan. Since we have a federal highway as source of much of our traffic issues, such liaison should establish relationships with US Representative Ellen O. Tauscher and her Walnut Creek staff.

There is much more to discuss as our AIA becomes our oversight with governments in our region. Even if a Municipal Advisory Committee (MAC) is established by the county to be the outward voice of the county, oversight will be required to deliver a consolidated, public voice for our community of neighborhoods. We should not expect the five council members of a MAC to have any volume of time for such community outreach.

There is more community to build after the concurrent issues of District 3 arbitrary changes in our Alamo region followed by a factional consideration of incorporation. The core of the Alamo region is the community of neighborhoods and neighbors must bring all governments, local organization and the AIA into such community's future.

Last night was a good start, but the Alamo region has a long distance to travel before our community of neighborhoods is an overall community in our region.

The future is hard work to define, include a community, and budget the reality!!

Hal, as a community courtesy
Alamo region community of neighborhoods

Posted by Jake, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 14, 2009 at 1:20 am

I can't wait to read Trignosis' post so I can be entertained and feel superior! Isn't it nice of Danville Weekly to let us post anonymously so one can keep saying "autocratic" and "Private Club" about a subject the writer is obviously ignorant. During the campaign there was much said about Alamo's intelligent and educated residents; Trig is a clearly an exception!

Posted by Triogenes, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 14, 2009 at 9:05 am

Thanks Jake. Always willing to liven up a dreary day.

My Post"

The AIA sounds like another layer of autocratic and bureaucratic government to me. Only this layer doesn't have to obey any laws regarding Open Meetings and conflict of interest.

Alamo will now be governed in the "back room."

Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of another community
on Mar 14, 2009 at 1:19 pm

Dear Dolores,

May we encourage guest commentators to present what the AIA could be in service to our region?

What about options to the AIA? Would a MAC have the capacity to serve our region with only five people? Would the county somehow be more open in announcing the policies, actions, projects and decisions they intend to impose on our region/

What about pursuing a set-aside of the incorporation election for cause and pursue an community-based authorship of an incorporation proposal that a majority of voters would support.

"What can be?" is the question,

Hal, as a community courtesy

Posted by Triogenes, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 14, 2009 at 7:28 pm

"In service to our region..."

It is becoming increasingly clear why there was so much anti-incorporation effort on the part of some people.

Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 15, 2009 at 8:32 am

Dear Dolores,

Without definition, "Mr. Three Genes (in respectful celebration of Mr. Green Jeans on Howdy Dowdy Show)" has clarified that the lack of inclusion of the majority in the incorporation process, the lack of definition of the proposed government, and the lack of pro forma planning/budgeting presented in incorporation proposal, did focus a majority of voters against the March 3 incorporation proposal.

But that is history and Alamo region's future is our only available subject and this specific forum is to determine what role, if any, the AIA has among the options of 1) set-aside and new incorporation proposal, 2) Alamo regional planning commission with functional committees, 3) AIA as planning commission with functional committees, or 4) a five person MAC with the county as the planning and functional decision-makers.

It is not "some people" that should design such a future. It is the majority's opportunity.


Posted by Triogenes, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 15, 2009 at 7:45 pm

Such Blissful Ignorance!

Since you have not had the benefits of a classical education I will be happy to explain things to you. This will be really hard, so pay attention.

In ancient Greece, a chap named Diogenes roamed about day and night with a lantern. When asked what he was doing he looked at his questioner with a sneer and replied, "I'm searching for an honest person." He then turned away and continued his search.

Diogenes was himself honest and was looking for yet another honest person hence the "dio" meaning "two" in his name. Triogenes has set himself a much higher standard and is looking for TWO HONEST PERSONS!

Diogenes: die-ah-jen-knees (not die-o-jeans)

Triogenes: try-ah-jen-knees (not try-o-jeans)

Now doesn't it feel better to have been illuminated?

And by the way, the AIA sounds like another layer of autocratic and bureaucratic government to me. Only this layer doesn't have to obey any laws regarding Open Meetings and conflict of interest. Before any support is given to the AIA and any proposed list of citizens' commissions and committees, we must have a defined structure of such an organization and an oversight citizen's committee in place. There is little reason to support the proposed AIA structure that does not provide that result.

Do we really want Alamo to be governed in the "back room?"

Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of another community
on Mar 15, 2009 at 8:09 pm

Dear Dolores,

The appropriate response to this continuation is "YES" and then wonder if that answer is understood.


Posted by Triogenes, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 16, 2009 at 5:29 pm

The answer is unfortunately only too well understood - and decried by reasonable people.

"Enough.." Is that a new way of saying "Uncle?"

Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of another community
on Mar 16, 2009 at 6:39 pm

Follow-through commentary, Dolores, missed the point.

The majority was not served with the AIM incorporation proposal or any option of the AIA, a MAC or various special districts. Thus, YES means that there is a recognized absence of community and relationships to afford our region, beyond the majority in neighborhoods, the ability to decide and execute going forward. Yes, we are lost in a history of a declining community group culture. Yes, we are lost in the anger of proponents that cannot see beyond that history.

Yes, we are relying on the new generation to bring community in our absence.

YES is quite enough,


Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of another community
on Mar 17, 2009 at 4:39 pm

As e-exchanges examined neighborhoods efforts (since April 2004) to answer the needs for Alamo regional planning and functional committees to designate services, our primary resolve has been the private alliance of neighborhoods using wealth and counsel to achieve appropriate compliance from all governments. In reviewing the use of five people for any such purposes among the options of a recently proposed town council, CCC-BOS, or a MAC & CCC-BOS, the service requirements of our Alamo region would simply overwhelm any choice of five people.

The defined need is a planning commission with functional committees comprised of our very capable residents in our region's neighborhoods. That commission and committees can be a function of a local government yet to be proposed, a SuperMAC as an Alamo Region Planning Commission with functional committees, or an AIA reconstituted to be a planning commission and functional committees.

The question in (this) forum is whether a majority would look to the AIA as the opportunity to reconstitute its scope of operations and provide such broad planning?

**Commentary by Melissa, Alamo regional counsel committee, Alamo region community of neighborhoods**


Posted by Rotten Robbie, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 17, 2009 at 9:38 pm

Trig: We need a clown for my kid's birthday party. can you do balloon tricks?

Posted by Triogenes, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 17, 2009 at 11:51 pm

Sorry folks, a MAC as designated by the county, can have no subcommittees and cannot report to or interact with any agency except the Board of Supervisors.

A planning commission is strictly in the purview of the county or incorporated towns. If you wanted the above committees, commissions, and planning authority, you should have supported incorporation.

And by the way, there ain't no such thing as a SuperMAC.

Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of another community
on Mar 18, 2009 at 4:10 pm

Forum participants should not be invited to accept Triogenes' very narrow interpretation of a SuperMAC as a Alamo region planning commission.

The term "SuperMAC" applies to Municipal Advisory Councils established in large regions or in larger population areas. It is a slang term used among the members of such groups. In reality they are Regional Planning Councils with functional committees for various county services provided in the region. Pescadero CA , San Mateo County, is the most often reference to such a SuperMAC, Web Link. As for establishing such a SuperMAC in Contra Costa County , the laws, rules and policies for establishing a regional planning commission would apply. CCC-BOS could create a SuperMAC as additional to their MAC laws, rules and policies based on the larger population of a region and a need for overall services management on a local/regional basis.

**Commentary by Garrett, ad hoc services committees, Alamo region community of neighborhoods**


Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of another community
on Mar 18, 2009 at 4:16 pm

Clarification for Triogenes' "If you wanted the above committees, commissions, and planning authority, you should have supported incorporation." The AIM Incorporation Proposal made no offer of committees and commissions, and reserved all planning and operational authority within a five member town council. No citizen, as a voter, was offered any definition of their role in the planning authority of the town of Alamo.

Hal, as a community courtesy

Posted by Triogenes, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 18, 2009 at 9:29 pm

The point is that a MAC cannot create or appoint sub-committees, committees, commissions, planning committees, etc. Never-never.

An incorporated town CAN do all these things.

And by the way, no incorporation proposal contains such definitions (go find one) since they are rightfully the authority and responsibility of the elected representatives. Proponents didn't offer such lures to the populace - to have done so would have been to lie and we can't lie about such things, now can we?

Posted by Halamo, a resident of another community
on Mar 19, 2009 at 7:18 am

Dear Dolores,

AS I foolishly reviewed applicable general and municipal laws, including those governing LAFCO incorporation processes, it became disclosed that incorporation proposals are restricted by local LAFCO policy and not by laws. In reviewing, "resources" the process of conflicting incorporation proposals and challenges to LAFCO policy were defined.

No matter what policy exists at LAFCO, if the resulting incorporation proposal is opposed by a majority of voters, then the incorporation process is a designed failure from the start. In Alamo, the incorporation election was lost at the moment of application, November 2007, because no inclusion and definition of government was defined for the voters.

We should allow Ms. Lou Ann Texeira to provide the details of this discussion,

Hal, as Halamo
The Alamo Towne Fool

Posted by Triogenes, a resident of Alamo
on Mar 19, 2009 at 8:11 am

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

If you wanted this authority, there was only one way to have it - vote for incorporation. Like every other town/city in California, the Town of Alamo would have had committees and commissions to address the needs of the community. All of our neighboring cities have such entities - why do you think Alamo would have been any different?

Never never can a MAC can do these things.

Posted by Community courtesy, a resident of another community
on Mar 19, 2009 at 9:45 am

Dear Dolores,

As is in any corporate start-up, authorities are specified in the corporation documentation proposed to investors. In the case of government corporations, subject to election, the investors are the voters and their authority must be specified in the incorporation proposal. As noted by LAFCO in another forum exchange, this was fully possible and could have been basis for the March 3 Incorporation Proposal considered by the voters.

It was fully obvious in the election results that Alamo voters were opposed to the government models in surrounding towns because of the exclusive structure resulting in authority for their town councils. Such towns have commissions and committees comprised of political supporters and only serve as gatekeepers for the town councils' authority.

Hal, as a community courtesy

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