Post a New Topic
Original post made
on Jun 14, 2011
I doubt the council plan to fire & outsource, but keep the police set unphased, would pass as democratic test. The plan seems to please the most wealthy Athertonians, few in percentage numbers who have clout and council representation. Let us all vote ! Many like us who have lived here for decades are not wealthy & see little need for our large, authoritarian, costly police force.
Dobbie and Carlson are absolutely correct - the Town must have a balanced budget without using reserves and it must eliminate its unfunded pension liabilities. This cannot be done with the current staff size or the current staff pension programs. The planned layoffs are simply the first in a number of necessary and painful steps.
San Mateo County is about to lay off employees also.
Second step is to close Holbrook Palmer park. We do not need to furnish a park for mostly non-Atherton residents.
Right On states:"Second step is to close Holbrook Palmer park."
If the park is closed it will revert to the estate which gave it to the Town and the Will of that Estate specifies that the land would then be donated to Stanford University. Stanford is, of course, a tax exempt institution so the Town would derive no tax revenues from the land but would still be required to provide public services for the land.
So what. Much cheaper than what we dump into the Park.
Close to one million last year
I'm for cannibalizing the whole Town at this point
Let's just get really efficient and outsource the entire administration--I think the APD could manage our taxes internally just fine on their own without all this bureaucracy nonsense, since apparently the Town now only exists for the police department's benefit any more anyway.
Lets give them the entire park and build them a 17 million dollar monument over there so that they can continue to grow into it proudly and increase the realtor's commissions here in Atherton.
The whole democratic government thing is just not working anymore and a full military junta just makes a lot more sense.
Yes, Mr. Dobbie and Mr. Carlson are correct, unfortunately they are starting with the cut and ignoring the gunshot wound. Gentelmen: the APD is bleeding your town dry. Outsource it. They're nothing more than a glorified private security force anyway. That kind of service can be found at a MUCH lower price.
After reading blogs from several residents of Atherton, it seems to me that they have forgotten (or never knew)the history of Atherton and why it exists today. Some residents complain that the APD should be replaced with the San Mateo SO. Think again Atherton...you will will not have your safe haven that you have today. The SO is being reduced like other cities.
The problem I see is from 1962 to present the Atherton City Council has ALWAYS declined to annex any businesses within the city limits. No businesses no revenue, except from residents. So enjoy the peace and safe haven that you all have with in the "Walled City of Atherton"
It is interesting how every conversation ends in the APD corner. For sure I agree that budget has to be balanced and compensations reduced in most departments including APD, but Athertonians do want their APD and in that sense if really necessary, they would vote for another parcel tax, but before that costs have to be checked.
Outsourcing is a valid method, but it has its disadvantages. Contracts need to be reached, signed, and then fullfilled. If bad contracts are signed, you can bury the town with endless liabilities. Think about contracts with Allied Waste that somehow ended in huge liabilities for the town. Nothing to do with building dept or APD. Once contracts are signed flexibility is lost. Renegotiating contracts takes time and money, too.
It is also time to outsource the police department.
Outsourcing most of the town's non-police services and laying off a majority of non-police staff without a proper public discussion first? Without a report from the city manager showing the cost-savings, if any, and impacts? And why is a self-funded department like building being outsourced? Something's fishy here.
From: Peter Carpenter
Date: June 15, 2011 8:06:04 PM PDT
To: William Widmer <email@example.com>, Theresa DellaSanta <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Jerry Carlson <email@example.com>, Elizabeth Lewis <firstname.lastname@example.org>, kathy mckeithen <email@example.com>, James Dobbie <firstname.lastname@example.org>, John Danielson <email@example.com>, William Conners <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: The challenges of a survey
It was suggested tonight that the Town conduct a survey of its citizens regarding appropriate responses to the current fiscal crisis.
First, we have a representative system of Town government and the five of you have been elected to represent us. We the citizens have already spoken in electing you and in placing our trust in your judgement.
Second, surveys done properly are expensive and take time - we have neither the luxury of time nor a surfeit of funds.
Third, surveys are very difficult to do well:
- A key issues would be the exact wording of the questions and the price tag to put on each item that people are being asked to say yes or no to. Everybody will want anything that is free.
- Another issue will be to get a statistically valid response rate in a Town that has primarily unlisted phones, lots of locked gates and with a propensity to discard unsolicited snail and email.
- Previous surveys were compromised by low sample sizes and a biased response rate by advocates.
- Similarly, past elections were biased by very aggressive campaigns to get out the Yes vote and no organized opposition.
- Finally, there will be the difficult problem of more people saying in an anonymous survey that they would be willing to pay X than people who would actual pay X or vote for a corresponding parcel tax.
I recommend that you move forward with your decision making via properly agendized public meetings with full opportunity for public comments and that you continue to exercise the individual judgements that you were elected to make.
[Portion deleted.] All those posts and no one addresses the real reason why nothing can be done.
MONEY or the lack of it.
Ms.Piggy says it all.
Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.
Post a comment
Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online.
Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information
We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.
Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?
- Atherton: Lindenwood
- Atherton: Lloyden Park
- Atherton: other
- Atherton: West Atherton
- Atherton: West of Alameda
- Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
- Menlo Park: Belle Haven
- Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
- Menlo Park: Downtown
- Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
- Menlo Park: Felton Gables
- Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
- Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
- Menlo Park: other
- Menlo Park: Park Forest
- Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
- Menlo Park: South of Seminary/Vintage Oaks
- Menlo Park: Stanford Hills
- Menlo Park: Stanford Weekend Acres
- Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
- Menlo Park: The Willows
- Menlo Park: University Heights
- Portola Valley: Brookside Park
- Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
- Portola Valley: Ladera
- Portola Valley: Los Trancos Woods/Vista Verde
- Portola Valley: other
- Portola Valley: Portola Valley Ranch
- Portola Valley: Westridge
- Portola Valley: Woodside Highlands
- Woodside: Emerald Hills
- Woodside: Family Farm/Hidden Valley
- Woodside: Kings Mountain/Skyline
- Woodside: Mountain Home Road
- Woodside: other
- Woodside: Skywood/Skylonda
- Woodside: Woodside Glens
- Woodside: Woodside Heights
- Woodside: Woodside Hills
- Belle Haven Elementary
- Corte Madera School
- Encinal School
- Hillview Middle School
- James Flood Magnet School
- La Entrada School
- Las Lomitas School
- Laurel School
- Menlo-Atherton High School
- Oak Knoll School
- Ormondale School
- Willow Oaks Elementary
- Woodside High School
- Woodside School
- another community
Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.
Freebirds Palo Alto shutters, Pieology to move in
By Elena Kadvany | 7 comments | 2,578 views
"Itís Not About the Nail"
By Chandrama Anderson | 4 comments | 1,891 views
Deny the 429 Univ Ave Project Appeal
By Steve Levy | 3 comments | 974 views
Now Playing - Your Dinner!
By Laura Stec | 0 comments | 777 views
Water War & Peace
By Paul Bendix | 0 comments | 221 views
Home & Real Estate
Shop Menlo Park
Send News Tips
Circulation & Delivery
Palo Alto Online
Mountain View Voice
© 2015 The Almanac
All rights reserved.