Town Square

Post a New Topic

Woodside write-in votes released: Shaw tops Reyering for council seat

Original post made on Nov 12, 2015

Write-in candidate Chris Shaw has won a seat on the Woodside Town Council in a victory over Nancy Reyering, who had been running for the District 3 seat unopposed.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, November 12, 2015, 5:12 PM

Comments (22)

Posted by stunning
a resident of another community
on Nov 12, 2015 at 7:42 pm

This sort of thing just doesn't happen... but here we are. Well done Mr. Shaw .

Posted by matt
a resident of Woodside: Family Farm/Hidden Valley
on Nov 12, 2015 at 8:12 pm

Wow. A last-second, write-in candidate comes from nowhere to win. The fact that he pulled this off under the most difficult circumstances clearly shows that the voters in Woodside do not trust and are tired of the heavy-handed antics of the planning commission.

Other council members should take note.

Posted by Robert
a resident of Woodside: Woodside Heights
on Nov 12, 2015 at 11:04 pm

To Matt who has left the comment "the voters in Woodside do not trust and are tired of the heavy-handed antics of the planning commission". You are mistaken. Woodside Planning Commission is fine. Woodside residents spoke up against the 'antics' of the Architectural Site Review Board (ASRB). In fact the Planning Commission voted in favor of streamlining the ASRB and reducing its authority. The decision was derailed after ASRB members said on 9/21 Town Council meeting that they wanted to maintain control of the process even for smaller projects and the Town council bowed to their demands.

The effort by ASRB members to block efforts to streamline the ASRB process to the disadvantage of the residents was very disconcerting. I voted for Chris Shaw not that I know him but because I believed it was time to get some new blood into the Town Council who disregarded the Planning Commission's vote to streamline the ASRB and bowed to the demands of ASRB members.

Posted by Susan Smith
a resident of Woodside: Skywood/Skylonda
on Nov 13, 2015 at 3:51 am

There is only a 6% chance of this happening. No offense to Nancy, and thanks for serving, but hooray for a little shake up in politics. Do us right Mr. Shaw.

Posted by Woodsider
a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Nov 13, 2015 at 7:49 am

Woodside residents spoke up clear and loud to take back our property rights. Congratulations Mr. Shaw!

Posted by Michael G. Stogner
a resident of another community
on Nov 13, 2015 at 11:33 am

Congratulations Mr. Shaw Thank You for giving the Voters an option.

Posted by AnonymousWoodsider
a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Nov 13, 2015 at 11:33 am

What is next? The problem is the ASRB populated by members who impose their personal preferences on Town residents. An ASRB member's bid for the town council failed but this practically keeps her in the ASRB and control the majority vote with Mah and Lubin. I don't think current ASRB members will do the right thing and resign. It may get worse unless the new Town council dissolves this dysfunctional committee and appoints new ASRB members.

Posted by Anonymous Resident Afraid of Reyering's Revenge
a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Nov 13, 2015 at 11:51 am

From the litany of comments on Nextdoor and the Almanac, one would think that the victory for Shaw seems to be more of a no-for-Reyering outcome because of her record on the ASRB... Hopefully now that Shaw has a foot in the council door he will prove to everyone that he was the correct choice based on his own merits, and endure as a well respected representative of District 3... Time will tell if Lubin, Mah and Reyering get the picture, accept with humility that the MAJORITY of voting residents think their actions on the ASRB are misdirected, or if their simple egos will continue to dictate their policy and decision-making.

Posted by Long time Woodsider
a resident of Woodside: Mountain Home Road
on Nov 13, 2015 at 11:56 am

Members of all Woodside town committees, including the ASRB, serve at the pleasure of the Town Council. The Town Council is free to replace any members on any committee at any time or even dissolve a committee entirely.

If ASRB members refuse to cooperate, the Town Council can simply change the ASRB charter to an "advisory-only" role for the Town staff, who will have the final decision.

Posted by X-resident
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Nov 13, 2015 at 1:08 pm

One of the reasons we left Woodside is that the ASRB continually overstepped their authority making all of our projects unnecessarily expensive and time consuming. I commend Reyering''s personal opinion about wildlife, but her opinions too often overshadowed rational answers that provided a realistic balance between wildlife and Woodside residents. About half of the ASRB also continually went above and beyond their charge with ridiculous opinions on style preferences (that went beyond the goal of preserving a rustic feel). I hope that Chris Shaw will be able to bring back some common sense to building and planning.

Posted by AnonymousWoodsider
a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Nov 13, 2015 at 1:18 pm

Responding to "long time resident" who says "The Town Council is free to replace any members on any committee at any time..".. Unfortunately in the past the Town council showed every effort to please ASRB members who show up at council meetings. The last incident was on 9/21 when Mah, Reyering and Lubin together with their significant others blocked the effort to streamline the ASRB. Another example involves a project on Whiskey Hill Road. Mah, Reyering, Lubin rejected the project. Planning Commission approved the project.. All neighbors living around the project site wrote letters in support of the project. Yet Tom Johnson, member Mah's husband appealed the Planning Commission's decision to the Town Council. He lives miles away from the project site in Emerald Hills yet this did not stop him from his quest to get his wife's views prevail. Town Council got intimidated by Mr. Johnson and disapproved the project granting him the appeal.

We elected Mr. Shaw to the Town Council but he is only one vote among seven votes. It is very important that residents who represent the majority voice in this election participate in council meetings. Mah, Reyering, Lubin will not let their power taken from them that easily.

Posted by John
a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 13, 2015 at 1:30 pm

Both are unpaid volunteers. Thank you for your service, Ms Reyering. Good luck, both finding the time to perform community volunteer service, and to do it well, Mr Shaw.

Posted by long time resident
a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 13, 2015 at 1:57 pm

congratulation Chris. well done.
The residents of Woodside finally spoke up but the residents are not done.
The write-in election of Chris sends a powerful message to the town and the volunteer committees. Thanks to the campaign for Chris, the resident have been empowered.

Posted by What's next?
a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 13, 2015 at 7:16 pm

That's a pretty telling result, Mrs Reyering....will you do the right thing and step down from the ASRB next?

Congrats Mr Shaw.

Posted by SteveC
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Nov 14, 2015 at 8:09 am

SteveC is a registered user.

The results are amazing. Congrats to Chris.

Posted by Ron
a resident of Woodside: Woodside Heights
on Nov 14, 2015 at 6:59 pm

Congratulations Chris Shaw. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to have our voice heard by agreeing to run as a write-in candidate.

Posted by very small margin
a resident of another community
on Nov 14, 2015 at 10:48 pm

78 votes is a "pretty telling result?" Out of a total of how many thousands of people living in Woodside? Mr. Shaw may have won the election but he hardly has a mandate. Nor should Ms. Reyering take the fact that 78 more people voted for Shaw than for her as a dictum to "step down."

Posted by Long time Woodsider
a resident of Woodside: Mountain Home Road
on Nov 15, 2015 at 7:35 am

Every single vote that Shaw received took a deliberate and educated effort by those voters. In elections with only one name on the ballot, as was the case in Woodside's District 3, many voters simply check the box that's available to them. It was VERY EASY to vote for Reyering. By contrast, it was VERY DIFFICULT to vote for Chris. Every one of Chris's votes was a deliberate expression of discontent.

Had Nancy won, something everybody expected, I'll bet you'd be shouting how the people of Woodside supported her agenda and had spoken. But they didn't because people believe the town's permitting and approval process is a travesty.

Chris won. Nancy lost. Elections have consequences.

Posted by What's next?
a resident of Woodside: Mountain Home Road
on Nov 15, 2015 at 2:36 pm

@very small margin:

This "very small margin" as you call it only tells half of the story. What's really telling is the fact that if you look at the unopposed candidates in other districts, they each received 600-700 votes (from memory.) District 3? About 1,250. That IS very telling. This means that many voters took the time to go and vote specifically to make their voice heard loud and clear in the District 3 election.

As you know I'm sure, the way the Town Council is set up, all residents can vote for all districts, not just the one they live in. The fact that so many voters didn't even bother casting a vote for the other districts sums it up: the main reason for them to vote was to ensure that Mr Shaw had a fair shot at it. Or, putting it another way, that Ms Reyering would not be elected.

Editor's note: The counts in the other districts were also updated: The latest count shows District 1 candidate Daniel Yost received 915 votes, District 5 candidate Tom Livermore received 939 votes, and District 7 incumbent Peter Mason received 893 votes.

a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Nov 16, 2015 at 10:38 am

This is Reyering's response to the outcome:

"You mention a need for anonymity because of “retributions” What hogwash. Every meeting is publicly held, taped and minutes are produced. Board members are collegial and meetings are professionally conducted. I have never seen what you are describing. And if anything like that were to take place, we live in a town and land which has appeals processes and courts of law. This is a ridiculous claim put forth to engender fear by those who are ignorant of the process."

How is my fear of retribution "Hogwash?" And how does recordings of proceedings protect me from necessary recommendations and delays if I was to come forward with a proposal???

Posted by AnotherResidentAfraidofRetribution
a resident of Woodside: other
on Nov 16, 2015 at 11:13 am

Having seen Reyering's response to the outcome of this election, I am alarmed so are numerous residents who have projects soon to be reviewed by the ASRB. It is very unlikely that she will step down and accept with humility that the outcome of this election is a NO-FOR-REYERING because of her record on the ASRB.

Town council, please take note. We expressed clear and loud of our discontent with the ASRB and Reyering in this election. Dissolve the nightmare committee called ASRB since Reyering,Mah, Lubin still control the majority vote.

a resident of Woodside: Woodside Glens
on Nov 16, 2015 at 12:44 pm

(clearly I meant to say UNNECESSARY recommendations in my post above)

I'm also continually offended by the suggestion that ALL the recommendations proposed by the ASRB are to bring the proposals in-line with the General Plan, as if the Plan is so obscure that only a seasoned veteran member of the ASRB can understand them and interpret them. All of the ASRB minutes are available online and if you take the time to read through meetings in the last few years (as I have for projects in my neighborhood) they are riddled with stylistic recommendations, usually at the whimsy of Mah and Reyering. Sure, some proposals are presented with variances and even requests for exceptions, but these are almost uniformly PRESENTED as a request in the initial proposal, not DISCOVERED by the ASRB. I can't comment on Nancy's claim that 95% of proposals eventually make it through to recommendation, but even if true, a delay ALWAYS comes at a substantial investment in terms of time (read YEARS) and cost (in some cases hundreds of thousands of dollars), particularly if a new (recommended) architect is employed.

That, Nancy, is the definition of POWER!!!

And on that note, there is a very real case for FRAUD and EMBEZZLEMENT if it's discovered that ASRB approval for some projects is unfairly hinging on employing particular "recommended" architects and/or contractors, and personal friendships or the return of favors are involved.

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Stay informed.

Get the day's top headlines from Almanac Online sent to your inbox in the Express newsletter.

James Beard Award winning chef Traci Des Jardins' restaurant el Alto abruptly closes its doors in Los Altos months after highly anticipated opening
By The Peninsula Foodist | 3 comments | 7,845 views

Palo Alto's bold proposal to jumpstart home electrification
By Sherry Listgarten | 16 comments | 4,162 views

San Bruno Wins Food Trend Craze with First Plant-Based Gas Mart
By Laura Stec | 2 comments | 2,368 views

The Benefits of Adding Market-Rate Housing in Palo Alto
By Steve Levy | 13 comments | 1,808 views

How Much Time do You Spend Outdoors?
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,677 views