Almanac

Viewpoint - October 6, 2010

Pros, cons of Measure T

Editor's Note: On Nov. 2, Menlo Park voters will decide whether to approve the Menlo Gateway project on Constitution Drive and Marsh Road. When completed, the project will include three multi-story offices buildings, three parking garages, a hotel and health club. The following guest opinions were written by City Council member John Boyle and Planning Commissioner Vince Bressler.

PRO: A great deal for Menlo Park

By John Boyle

In my business career, I've been involved in a lot of negotiated agreements — many involving hundreds of millions of dollars. I've never seen a "perfect" deal. There are always pros and cons. The key is to recognize when the pros outweigh the cons by enough margin to take a risk and move forward.

Menlo Park is facing such a decision right now with Measure T, the Menlo Gateway Project. If approved by the voters, this measure will allow the redevelopment of an underutilized light industrial area adjacent to U.S. 101 and Marsh Road near the Bayfront Expressway. It will transform this largely dormant area into a vibrant, productive, job-producing new region. The project will include high-tech oriented office space, a four-star hotel, and a new athletic club.

Collectively, the project is projected to deliver over $15 million in one-time impact fees, over $1.6 million in annual net incremental revenue to our city, and millions more to other parts of our overall community (the high school district, fire district, county agencies). The project is projected to create 1,800 construction-related jobs and provide more than 2,500 permanent jobs.

Those who oppose this project point to fears about traffic impacts, changes to the region, and other concerns that all have been discussed and debated over several years and through an extensive public process. In the final analysis, the people who have studied the data most closely all have come to the same conclusion — this is a great deal for Menlo Park and our community at large. The consultants hired by the city (multiple experts in environmental, traffic, and other key issues) all gave it unanimous support. The Planning Commission and the City Council both approved the project.

I take notice when experts say that something is a great deal for Menlo Park. It's important to me because I care about this city. I've lived here for almost 30 years. One of the things that my family and I really appreciate about living in Menlo Park is the quality of life it affords us — and all residents — thanks in large part to the number of city-provided services, such as libraries, parks, swimming pools, and the police department.

But these services cost money. To avoid drastic cuts in services, we must continue to grow the top line for the city. And that means embracing smart projects like Menlo Gateway when they come along, which isn't very often.

In fact, the revenue boosts from recent projects like the Rosewood Hotel on Sand Hill Road and the Safeway on Middle Avenue have helped Menlo Park weather the economic downturn far better than some of our neighboring cities. Menlo Gateway can grow our top line in similar fashion to help secure the city's financial future.

There are always challenges in any deal. But the upside to Menlo Park on this deal far outweighs the downside risks. The city, in fact, isn't being asked to invest any of its cash in this project. The investment risk will be 100 percent on the developer. Nor is the city being asked to provide any form of "tax holiday" or other incentive, as is often the case for a city that wants to attract a new hotel.

So if Menlo Gateway is built, we all win. If it isn't, we all lose: the developer loses a significant investment, and the community loses the opportunity to create jobs, revenue, and a revitalized region at Marsh Road and U.S. 101.

Menlo Gateway is a great deal for Menlo Park. Please join me in voting yes on Measure T.

John Boyle is city council member who is currently serving as vice mayor.

CON: Largest zoning change in city's history

By Vincent Bressler

Measure T on the November ballot is a vote on the largest zoning change in the history of Menlo Park.

I will vote no on Measure T for a variety of reasons.

Measure T provides no up-front money to Menlo Park. The city gets no payment in exchange for giving the biggest zoning entitlement in its history.

In other words, if voters approve Measure T, the value of the land for this project will immediately increase by about $100 million, but the city does not receive any money until and unless the Bohannon Group pays for a building permit. David Bohannon has stated that he does not intend to build until the economy can support his massive project.

Measure T will not create jobs when we need them. Under Measure T, the Bohannon Group has the right but no agreement or obligation to build. In fact, the 20-year time frame presents an opportunity for Bohannon to wait for the best economic conditions before proceeding.

Measure T may hurt existing job-creation mechanisms. Companies like Pacific Biosciences, Geron, and InVisage, headquartered in the M-2 zone where the Bohannon project is located, are most likely to provide job and revenue growth for our city over the next 10 years. However, the development agreement gives the Bohannon Group priority over other projects. Even if the Bohannon Group has not moved ahead with its project, those companies may be unable to expand — because important resources required by any development will have been reserved for the Bohannon Group.

If not Measure T, then what? A new process defined in the M-2 Zoning Plan streamlines development projects for companies doing business in Menlo Park.

What went wrong with Measure T, and how do we fix it?

The negotiation process for the development agreement was closed and insular. City Council members who were part of the "negotiation team" were barred from the negotiations, which were conducted in closed sessions and included only the Menlo Park city manager, city attorney and public works director along with the Bohannon negotiating team. The attitude of the majority of City Council members seems to be: "This is the best that we can do." But that is clearly not the case.

The M-2 Zoning Plan is taking place in a much more open environment. That process is a model for what should happen here. Vote no on Measure T, and let's move forward in the right way.

Visit FactsNotHype.org for more information.

Vincent Bressler is a member of the Menlo Park Planning Commission.

Comments

Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Oct 7, 2010 at 6:29 am

The project in itself is not bad. However Bohannon has done nothing to alleviate the insfrastructure burdens that will be place on Menlo Park.

Traffic is a huge issue. I suggest Mr Bohannon promise to do the following before approval is granted:

1. Run a bus shuttle service from the project to the neighborhoods in Belle Haven to give them access to their jobs. Tis should run in the morining, at lunch time, and in the evening 7 days a week

2. Run another bs service from the project to the Menlo park CalTrain Station and Santa Cruz Avenue

3. Partially pay for the extension of Bay Front Parkway to Seaport Bouelvard in RWC.

4. Make approval of the Measure T project contingent on the Bay Front Parkway extension and CalTrans funding the recontruction of the Woodside Road/Highway 101 interchange


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Oct 7, 2010 at 8:05 am

About shuttles. Shuttles are a valuable way to provide some mobility choices to some target markets, ie. Seniors, schools, but they cannot possibly generate the capacity needed to significantly reduce trips.

In 1998 & 1999, when I was seated as a council member, the strong economy provided much local and regional money for shuttles and Menlo Park ran many of them at that time. Yet even then, during the heyday of shuttle funding, according to Menlo Park's then traffic consultant Dan Smith, the total shuttle capacity of Menlo Park in one year was less than the number of trips Menlo Park generated in a single day.

The nearest transit stop to the proposed project is the Caltrain station in Menlo Park and Redwood City. How many shuttle trips can a single shuttle make from those locations during rush hour, how long would it take to deliver someone from the train station to the project site and return, and how many people does each shuttle carry? Shuttles won't work to reduce trips.

The only real way to reduce the traffic impacts of the project to "less than significance" is to reduce the size of the project to one of the smaller alternatives studied in the EIR.


Posted by Paul Collacchi, a resident of another community
on Oct 7, 2010 at 8:42 am

A few comments about John's arguments:

This deal is very simple. A future hotel, and its revenue, in exchange for permission to build 3 8-story office towers and parking garages, and their impacts. The offices provide no net revenue.

If the deal were that clear cut, there would be no need to try to gussy it up by including impact fees and by mis-stating property tax revenues for (Redwood City) schools which is what John and David Bohannon are collectively doing.

Impact Fees: Impact fees are re-imbursements paid to the city for goods and services it produces. They are not "benefits" and there is no left-over money. By law, the city cannot make "profit" from impact fees.

Some of this money is due the city for services already rendered such as the consultants John mentioned, the EIR, Financial Impact Reports, shadow studies and costs associated with processing the application. The lion's share of the fees is related to traffic impacts which nevertheless do not get mitigated. The developer is required to eventually build several turn lanes and signal lights for street segments in the project area.

No "consultant" told Menlo Park this was a "good deal." It doesn't work that way. Council members, not consultants, are elected to make value judgments. Go here if you wish to see what the consultants were hired to do, and why their work is useful, flawed, and not definitive about anything. Web Link

Jobs. The project is not a stimulus project. It cannot be built or financed today, or soon. The developer finally admitted this to the EIR consultant. Office buildings don't create office jobs. Because there are already 15 empire state buildings of empty offices in Silicon Valley, financiers will not build more empty buildings until those are filled. This project is not going to put money at risk, TODAY, to create construction jobs and it will never create office jobs.

Revenue. Vince was incorrect in his argument. No hotel or property tax would be paid until after the project element is built and occupied, up to 8 years for the hotel and 20 years for the offices. The benefits to Belle Have are contractually tied to the "Phase two offices" and probably won't be paid for fifteen years.

Housing Impact fees. We have seen several housing commissioners endorse the project because it provides $8M in BMR fees. The average subsidy Menlo Park pays for a single BMR unit approaches $500,000 per unit. At its best, the $8M would produce about 25 BMR units, yet according to the EIR housing analysis, the project generates demand for literally hundreds of "low income" housing, and more than a thousand housing units for all income levels.

Can anyone explain to me how it's a sustainable policy to create the unmitigated demand for hundreds of low income housing units while collecting enough money to build 25?


Posted by Morris Brown, a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Oct 9, 2010 at 12:42 pm

Paul Collacchi has a letter in the Daily news that was printed today and really covers most of the serious objections to the Bohannon Menlo Gateway / Bohannon Towers project.

Paul writes:


Measure T is poster child for dumb growth

Dear Editor: Menlo Park Measure T is really a 52-page "futures" contract between Menlo Park and a private developer to eventually build a massive office/hotel complex at Marsh Road and Highway 101. The project has regional impacts.

Measure T will increase traffic fivefold for 16 acres near Marsh and 101, creating significant, irreversible delay at nine intersections throughout eastern Menlo Park and on highways 101 and 84. With no nearby transit, on-site housing, bike or pedestrian access, the autointense project may become the poster child for "dumb growth."

Measure T is not a stimulus project.

Menlo Park finally admitted in its EIR that the developer can't finance or build the project. The long-term contract gives the developer as many as 20 years to build. Menlo Park won't collect a dime in new revenue until Measure T is built and occupied.

Measure T creates office buildings, not office jobs. Business Week says there are empty offices in Silicon Valley equal to 15 Empire State buildings. Measure T offices won't be built until those are filled.

Measure T does not contribute property tax to any Menlo Park school district. If built, the project will cause some Menlo Park elementary school districts to lose money. The Menlo Park Fire Protection District will also lose revenue annually, without compensation.

Measure T is a bad deal for Menlo Park and for the region. To learn more, visit www.factsnothype.org.

Paul Collachi, Redwood City

----------------

What was the council thinking when they approved this monster? Quite frankly I don't think they ever read the Development Agreement, which really spells out what this is all about.

So it now up to the voters of Menlo Park to reject this oversized and financially very bad project.

The recently filed Form 460 by the Bohannon organization reveals they have already spent almost $200,000 to promote this project. No wonder, it is a gold mine for then, and inflicts serious impacts on our community. It simply is not a fair deal and should be rejected.

Vote no on T this November

morris brown


Posted by Andy Cohen, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 9, 2010 at 5:15 pm

I just learned that the city attorney, Bill McClure, has stated publicly that the council is to blame for this lousy deal, but, like most lawyers, he speaks with forked tongue! McClure and Rojas touted themselves as experts to the council subcommittee when we asked for expert negotiators, and surely they should own up to their full responsibility for this boondoggle, wouldn't you say? Not only that, but while I refused to meet privately with ANYONE other than individual residents with home improvement projects on appeal to council, both Heyward and Kelly met privately with Bohannon, and Kelly voted for the project after he promised her $500,0000 for landscaping NEAR the project. Remember she and Heyward are the same 2 council members who were excited when we first learned of the project and they wanted tennis courts atop the buildings and a showcase hotel facing the bay! Heyward told publicly how there was no more the city could get from Bohannon. They sound like Gail; so much for measured growth!

Andy


Posted by James Madison, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 9, 2010 at 5:28 pm

Everyone seems to debate as if passing Measure T will make building the Bohannon Project a certainty. Not so. Bohannon is not obligated to build the project or any piece of it, unless the market makes financing feasible. At present that is unlikely. He simply has a long term option, i.e., for the term of the development agreement. The only consequence of not building will be that the development agreement lapses. And Bohannon was given this option by the City Council, subject only to approval by the electorate, for zero in return. A gift of City resources if ever there was one.


Posted by No on T, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 9, 2010 at 11:29 pm

"The only consequence of not building will be that the development agreement lapses."

Not entirely true. Even if nothing is built, the development agreement restricts the right of other property owners to develop. So if a manufacturer off Marsh road needs to increase its plant size, provisions in the Bohannon agreement may make that growth impossible. These businesses would then be forced to relocate to other cities, further draining sales tax dollars from Menlo Park.

The Bohannon project is a no-growth project -- for everyone but Bohannon. The project needs to be scaled back to fit the site and the city.


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 10, 2010 at 9:21 am

My prediction if Measure T passes: Bohannon sells the property at a much greater price than he possibly could now. If the measure passes it upzones the property. There's no point building anything there now as there is a surplus of office space, but someday someone will be ale to. In the mean time Bohannon will have cut a fat hog and the buyer won't be required to abide by the terms of the agreement. Thanks to our "brilliant" city council.


Posted by Morris Brown, a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Oct 10, 2010 at 12:55 pm

The history of Bohannon development is to NOT sell properties. They are long term developers and holders of properties. As an example, they own the Hillsdale shopping center, which is one of only 4 major centers still in private hands -- most having being sold off to REITS (source Wikipedia). So in my view they are not out to sell off the property, although one might think that selling off the Hotel, which they really aren't interested in, would be a possibility.

They are one of the wealthiest families in California and have spared no expense into this effort to expand their empire at the expense of the quality of life in Menlo Park. They just reported spending almost $200,000 to promote this project. The project should be rejected by the voters of Menlo Park.

What Bohannon wants is the 700,000 sq. feet of office space and the parking (another 600,000 square feet) to go with it. That's where the big bucks lie. The City got nothing for the offices and associated parking, yet they generate the huge impact in green house gasses and traffic impacts. Just think about rents of $5.00 per square foot per month and you have a $3.5 million per month revenue stream or $42 million per year. The City gets nothing of this, yet the City granted the developer a 5 fold increase in density to develop this 16 acres. Well Yes, Kelly extracted $500,000 (a one time payment) to enhance his project through landscaping on property owned by Menlo Park. You really negotiated a great deal Kelly!

In a much better deal with a City that really knew how to deal with a large developer (like Palo Alto nearby), the City would have extracted a considerable public benefit through the Development Agreement. Our council which had the final say really blew this and let Bohannon have his will.

Note No on T. For facts go to www.FactsNotHype.org


Posted by Bob, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 10, 2010 at 2:39 pm

Andy Cohen said "I refused to meet privately with ANYONE other than individual residents with home improvement projects on appeal to council."
Well Andy, I sure hope you recused yourself on each of those appeals. If not you should resign from the City Council. The sooner the better!


Posted by No on T, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 10, 2010 at 7:03 pm

Bob, except for Andy Cohen, all council members regularly meet in private, no records kept or minutes divulged, with developers and others who are appearing before them. Pretty disgusting. Maybe they should all resign.

Bohannon met privately with almost all the city council members and planning commissioners. He told them, in private, "facts" that do not correspond with the public record, but which serve to make his project seem more palatable than it actually is. He threatened to ruin people who refused to meet with him. Inasmuch as the various cc and pc members made their decisions based on private rather than public information, this is an absolute travesty.

The whole project cries out for investigative journalism, but since the publisher of this newspaper is among those who received private assurances (and who has not apparently read the actual documents posted on the city's site) we are not going to see any Woodward and Bernstein efforts here.


Posted by Unbelievable, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 10, 2010 at 9:47 pm

We have a bunch of folk that don't like Measure T on this blog, that consist of a person that doesn't even live in Menlo Park (Collacchi), a person that has NEVER liked ANY type of improvement to Menlo Park (Morris Brown) and a guy that doesn't like Measure T because his nemesis, Gail Slocum, wants it.(Hank Lawrence)
Can we please have some folks that actually live in the city, can speak objectively and want to IMPROVE Menlo Park, without these fringe elements taking over our town!


Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 10, 2010 at 10:10 pm

Unbelievable:

I live in this town and have repeatedly posted here that measure T is folly. It places huge burdens on Menlo Park with absolutely NO mitigation. I have no axes to grind. I just am not interested in paying for Bohannon to line his pockets at my town's expense. I would love to improve Menlo Park. This project doesn't. It brings large burdens to our infrastructure and brings nothing to offset those burdens. The numbers for money to schools are bogus and the money from the hotel taxes is a drop in the bucket when compared to the costs that will burden this city. So I'm voting NO! And I'm not Morris Brown, Hank Lawrence or Paul Colachi. This project stinks! [Portion deleted. Please don't attack other posters.]


Posted by Vincent Bressler, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Oct 11, 2010 at 12:42 am

Unbelievable:

Many of the "faces" behind measure T are getting something out of this deal. There's a lot of largess to go around here.

The heroes are those who have little to gain, except the satisfaction of knowing that they stood up to tell the truth and that they did their best for Menlo Park.

This is a bad deal for Menlo Park. This is our own example of how money can buy access. It happened on my watch, and I'm doing what I can to make sure that people know the truth.




Posted by truth, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Oct 11, 2010 at 8:25 am

Can someone ask Andy and Paul and Morris about how they took the Derry Project into private negotiations, without any public information, and never once reported out? Andy never said a word when Paul and his minions of Morris and the group stole from the city a project that passed through the Planning Commission. This was illegal and Vince just sucked his thumb about it and Andy, of course, since these guys are his friends, looked the other way.

I would ask our reporters to uncover the cover up by Andy and Paul about that serious violation. I heard Morris got thousands of dollars from the developer.

C'mon guys, ask the questions!


Posted by No on T, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 11, 2010 at 8:42 am

Wow, truth. Haven't seen you for a while? So you're fine with the gross malfeasance committed on behalf of the Bohannon project because as far as you're concerned, it's payback for Derry? That is a really odd way to determine whether or not a project makes sense for Menlo Park.

I don't think Derry reflects our council's finest shining moment and believe the council should have acted rather than sent Derry into private negotiations. Bohannon is an even more blatant example of council incompetence and corruption.

Interestingly enough, Bohannon says that he wanted to be on the ballot because he knew if the council passed his project, there would be a referendum. And that if enough people knew the facts, they would turn down his project. An election, where he could throw a lot of money into glossy literature, seemed the easier route. What does that tell you about the net value of this project for our city? Or how dumb Bohannon thinks the voters are? Let's prove him wrong!


Posted by Vincent Bressler, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Oct 11, 2010 at 8:44 am

Truth,

I would like to see all negotiations by the city, for labor contracts and for development rights, recorded and released to the public. I would like to see all meetings between labor and development interests and representatives of the city disclosed.

I object to private lobbying in Menlo Park for favors from the city.

And I'm using my name here. Why don't you?

Derry was before my time on the PC and it's not relevant to the current conversation.



Posted by truth, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Oct 11, 2010 at 2:47 pm

What I am against is political games such that you play when, in fact, we all know you guys are all one small group of project opponents. You really act like this city does not know it is Paul, Patti Frye, David Spear, Morris Brown and this group of guys who shake their fists at every project. Vince, true to form, hides from responsibility for this group because he can, but it is insincere.

You guys, led by Chuck, referended Derry and then you took the negotiations private and never reported out anything to the community. Vince now saying he is for transparency is a joke. He said nothing about his because it was his buddies doing it.

You basically held the developer over a barrel and took money from him and now you are covering it up.

But now that you have another fight, you tell us "this is not relevant"?

You mean credibility and honesty and truth are not relevant?

Vince, you are full of it. Stop trying to act like you are some messiah or messenger of transparency when you cannot even see that you were part of one of the biggest scams in city history.

And look at the comment before Vince's ridiculous response and now they are trying to blame this council for that back door deal.

Really? And what council member to you presume to have had that insider knowledge with Morris and Paul and the gang of no?

You got and you can say it, we all know the answer.

Andy.

Thanks for pointing that out.


Posted by Vincent Bressler, a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Oct 11, 2010 at 3:30 pm

Truth,

I really think that you should tell everyone who your are. I am wondering what your motivation is for defending this project with such venom.

I've voted in favor of many projects on the Planning Commission.


Posted by truth, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Oct 11, 2010 at 4:41 pm

I haven't made one statement about the project. I still think your approach to Derry was wrong and none of you have explained away that private negotiation. You still have not explained it, now you are challenging my motives instead of explaining that private deal.


Posted by No on T, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 11, 2010 at 5:13 pm

Truth, looks like you are still trying to change the subject! Maybe you should change your handle?

Maybe you don't understand the referendum process? The city council had two clear choices after the signatures were authenticated. Instead, it punted. I personally think it was the wrong decision, but that was 2006. History!

The similarity with Derry and Bohannon is that once again the council failed to act. Meanwhile, Gail Slocum -- an ally of yours? -- is broadcasting statements about Measure T that simply don't pass the straight face test. It makes me wonder how much money is changing hands in these last few weeks before the election.

By the way, your attacks on Vincent Bressler are crude and baseless. I watch all the planning commission meetings and appreciate his thoughtful contributions to the process. He is one of the few that refused to get involved in Bohannon's backroom dealings. All our elected and appointed officials should feel ashamed that they can't say the same.


Posted by Morris Brown, a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Oct 11, 2010 at 8:56 pm

Truth: Quite frankly you are full of crap. You either don't know what happened on Derry or you are deliberately just spreading lies.

The City council had full control after we gathered the necessary signatures to either force approval of the project to a ballot or the Council could have rescinded its approval and the project would be dead.

Instead Menlo Park Tomorrow was asked to see if a negotiated compromise could be reached. This was not illegal, as you contend. Furthermore, City Attorney William McClure was involved and we were hardly making any kind of deal that would be anything but above board.

As for reporting out, we succeeded in reaching a compromise involving reduced height and density and more public space, more commercial space and a considerable public benefit payment from the developer of $2 million.

This was all reported and this revised project and Development Agreement went to the planning commission and was approved as a revised project. It was set to go to council for approval or rejection when the developer put the brakes on.

Behind all of this was a problem between the developer, the O'Brien group, and the Derry family, which owns the land. The problems involved how to draw a property line, since the Derry family wanted to continue to keep the commercial part of the project. Such a property line would need to be drawn through a parking garage, which cannot be done.

This problem existed in the original project as well, and was expected to be worked out, but it never was and re-appeared with the negotiated project.

A couple of months ago it was reported that the O'Brien group and Derry family had finally reached an agreement on how to solve the property line problem. We expect the revised project to come back to council for approval or rejection.

Of course in the meantime, conditions for commercial and residential properties have hardly been robust. Hopefully market conditions will improve and the revised project will come to Council. This is last hurdle for approval or rejection of the revised project.

Council has full control. They can either approve the negotiated project or reject it. A rejection would bring back the original project.

If Council rejects the revised project, the original project could either be rejected by council and that would be it demise or Council could vote to send approval or rejection to a full vote of the residents.

Now I'm not about to get into any further discussion with you and waste more time with someone who either doesn't know the facts or is just plain lying.

Finally, just in case you don't know, I led the Derry Referendum.


Posted by Irony-tastic, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 11, 2010 at 9:37 pm

It's so much fun watching Morris, Vince, Paul, etc. have to deal with half-baked accusations coming their way, instead of the usual other way around. Someone can dish it out but not take it, eh?


Posted by andy cohen, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Oct 11, 2010 at 11:49 pm


It seems like a long time to wait for the benefits we expect from the development to realize...

But more troubling to me is the last section 2.3 where it says that "...the expiration of the term of this Agreement shall not affect any rights of Owner that are or
would be vested under City Laws in the absence of this Agreement, or any other rights arising from Approvals granted or issued by the City for the construction or development of all or any portion of the Project."

It seems to say that we have no way to undo the zoning change once the City approves the development.


Posted by truth, a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Oct 12, 2010 at 11:33 am

Morris, thanks for your information. Who was in that private negotiation? Can you please list the people who were "representing" the city? Any elected folks? Anyone we chose to represent us? Or was it you, Paul and his minions?

This goes to the heart of all of this opposition. They attack elected officials on transparency and when that is proved not to work or it is obvious they violate the values of open process more than anyone else, they attack intellect or temper or some other intangible.

Andy has sold out to this small group so you cannot even trust if he is writing his own posts.

Morris, tell us who was in the meeting please. Then tell us how much you personally received.

This is all open and honest stuff as you put it.

To blame the council for not killing off this project and somehow making it their fault that you took a back-door negotiation that resulted in no project is just funny.


Posted by No on T, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 12, 2010 at 11:44 am

Stay on topic, "truth?"

Some of the pro-T rhetoric reminds me of the classic legal maxim: "If you're weak on the facts and strong on the law, pound the law. If you're weak on the law and strong on the facts, pound the facts. If you're weak on both, pound the table."

Measure T is fluffware. Therefore, its supporters do their best to ignore the truth (the real truth, not the poster) and pound the table, hoping the voters will be suitably distracted by arm-waving and hyperbole.


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