Posted by Right to Vote & Freedom of Speech, a resident of the West Atherton neighborhood
Recently the Almanac wrote an editorial regarding Atherton Mayor Bill Widmer and City Council members Kathy McKeithen and Jim Dobbie's desire to "shut down" an Atherton email group that was allowing residents to comment on the library in the park and informing them of upcoming votes. Last week Widmer, McKeithen, and Dobbie voted not to allow the residents a vote on the issue. In Atherton, home to executives of Google and Facebook, companies who are bringing freedom to the world, the council blocks freedom of speech and freedom to vote. The agenda item was carefully worded by Widmer to hire a company to do a phone survey with the questions approved by a majority vote of the council. Lewis said that the only solution was a "town wide vote." Widmer would not let her speak on the issue, claiming the Brown Act only allowed items on the agenda. Carlson found a solution. He called for a town wide "survey," using the word on the agenda, by mail to all registered voters. Lewis supported that way to obtain the opinion of all of Atherton. Widmer, McKeithen, and Dobbie voted "no" to a written townwide survey. The same three that want to "shut down" an email group will not let the residents vote.