Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The latest list of Pacifica City Council candidates

OK, at the end of the extended Wednesday filing period, here's who we've got...

Three seats up for grabs in November.
Sue Digre (Incumbent)
Jim Vreeland (Incumbent)
Thomas Clifford (General contractor)
Karl Davidson (Information security specialist)
Heather Tanner (Attorney)
Barbara Arietta (Public relations consultant)
Susan Vellone (Local business owner)
Len Stone (Local business owner) 
William "Leo" Leon (Planning Commission)

BJ Nathanson decided not to run. Len Stone and Leo Leon did.

Posted by Steve Sinai


Steve Sinai said...

My peeps would be Arietta, Vellone and Stone.

Kathy Meeh said...

Sounds good to me. Think we all vote alike, for the sustainable economic improvement of this city. Balanced city: "our economy is our economy."

todd bray said...

Oh Steve, you are so cute when you post things.

Steve Sinai said...

I'm always cute, Todd. (Except when I wake up in the morning.)

todd bray said...


Kathy Meeh said...

Who are you voting for Todd, and why?

The Watcher said...

Enviros against conservatives. Enviros win.

Kathy Meeh said...

Watcher, what conservatives would those be? Are you talking about the moderate people of this city that have been duped by the "enviros"?

Mr. Sir said...

Kathy, conservative candidates might not be so keen on having Pacifica pick up the tab for the initial costs and continued maintenance of the dog park that you advocate for -- especially in a time when the city is looking to cut costs and expenditures.

To conservatives, a dog park represents yet another "give away" of dwindling land to an interest group in an enterprise that (once again) will not generate any revenue for the city.

Bark Nuggets said...

Remember everyone: First and foremost, I am a socialist!

Second, every group that I am not a member of is a special interest group.

'nuff said...

rude paul said...

"To conservatives, a dog park represents yet another "give away" of dwindling land to an interest group in an enterprise that (once again) will not generate any revenue for the city."

not true. nearly 40% of the population of Pacifica have dogs. More people will use that dog park in a day than will walk mori point in a month, and there are opportunities to capitalize on revenue from visitors.

i doubt you speak for "conservatives" anyway

Kathy Meeh said...

Mr. Sir/Watcher or who ever you are, who is "conservatives"? You're confusing the issue again, and what does "dog parks" have to do with this candidate article?

However, most cities provide "dog parks" paid for and maintained by their city general fund as part of city services.

Mr. Sir said...

i doubt you speak for "conservatives"

Oh, I very much doubt that I speak for "conservatives" to be sure. I only speak for myself.

nearly 40% of the population of Pacifica have dogs.

Have a citation to this figure anywhere?

what does "dog parks" have to do with this candidate article?

Your very first post in this thread stated that you would vote for "sustainable economic improvement." The dog park, which you advocate for, is neither

a) sustainable -- during a time where the city's general funds are insufficient to maintain its own sewer and roads, let alone build and maintain a dog park

b) economic improvement -- the dog park will generate zero revenue and instead will be a drain on the city's bottom line. 99.9% of the visitors to the dog park will be local residents.

In conclusion, to support a candidate that stands for, in your words, "sustainable economic improvement of this city," is to support a candidate that may very well refuse to throw city money at a dog park.

Something to consider.

rude paul said...

mr sir is engaging in typical nobie tactics

noise noise noise distraction noise noise meaningless argument

Mr. Sir said...

Everyone look.

Look at rude paul engaging in typical mouthbreather agitprop.

Unable to come up with an intelligent reply, he mashes the keys and wets himself.

rude paul said...

i could make an intelligent reply if provided with an intelligent argument. lacking the latter, i see no need to dignify your comments with more intelligent reply

Jeffrey W Simons said...

I know it is early in the campaign season, but it seems the usual obfuscation is starting already. One has to question the intentions of an anonymous poster who would write:

"nearly 40% of the population of Pacifica have dogs.

Have a citation to this figure anywhere?"

and then 2 sentences later unequivocally state:

"b) economic improvement -- the dog park will generate zero revenue and instead will be a drain on the city's bottom line. 99.9% of the visitors to the dog park will be local residents."

I'd only like to point out 2 things: #1 - demanding citations from other people and then failing to back up your own is a little sloppy, and #2 - you do realize "99.9% of the visitors to the dog park will be local residents" means that for every 1,000 people who visit that dog park, only ONE will be from out of town??

There is no contradiction in being pro-economy and pro-dog park. I was in 2008. I have also stood up for funding of the school resource officer, the resource center, waiving development fees for the Little Brown Church . . . I've supported a variety of causes like this. These are all fundamental quality of life investments into the community and have nothing to do with being a conservative or a liberal or a socialist or whatever. And they have nothing to do with funding for infrastructure improvements that have been woefully neglected the past 8+ years.

The real heart of the argument is to support a candidate who will look to grow the city's general fund by a mechanism other than more taxes, who will support development in areas designated for development, and who will be more fiscally responsible than the current city council.

The dog park is a negligible economic issue in the grand scheme of things and POOCH is raising a lot of money from private sources to defray the cost to the city. I have to agree with "rude paul" in that the argument presented by "mister sir" is a weak distraction lacking any sense or merit.

Mr. Sir said...

rude paul:

Given that the vast majority of visitors will be Pacifica residents, how will a dog park bring in a single penny of revenue?

If it doesn't bring in revenue and in fact costs the city $$$ to construct and maintain it (during a period when we can't even maintain our crumbling infrastructure), why would a candidate who stands for "sustainable economic development" support this drain on city resources?

Mr. Sir said...

It's interesting the hand-waving that occurs on this site.

Construct a seaside trail that brings in visitors from outside the city to come and use (bringing their $$$ with them) and all hell breaks loose here about the city's priorities.

Construct a dog park that only residents will use (no revenue generated) and everything is hunky.


Jeffrey W Simons said...

"It's interesting the hand-waving that occurs on this site.

Construct a seaside trail that brings in visitors from outside the city to come and use (bringing their $$$ with them) and all hell breaks loose here about the city's priorities.

Construct a dog park that only residents will use (no revenue generated) and everything is hunky.


I'm sure most people who read this site understand this is a gross misrepresentation of the facts.

Steve Sinai said...

The trails have hardly brought any money into the city. If someone believes otherwise, I'd like to see the evidence. Pacifica ranks last, or nearly last, on almost every county economic indicator. The whole "environment is our economy" idea has been a total failure.

I doubt a dog park would, either. The POOCH people who were advocating for the dog park understood that, because the city's broke, they'd be the ones voluntarily maintaining it. They were simply asking for a plot of land from the city.

Markus said...

There are not that many hikers on our trails during the weekdays. The numbers increase on weekends, especially during seldom occurring fair weather. I have hiked these trails for many years. If there is revenue generated by out of town hikers, its minimal at best. I love the trails and the fact that we have them is a big plus. These trails have the potential to generate more revenues if we had more shops, restaurants, services and other amenities visitors need, in close proximity. With the right kind of development in the OWWTP, quarry and the old Horizon properties, to name a few, we can attract and capture more visitors and travelers willing to spend here.
We have plenty of trails. We desperately need additional local commercial establishments not only to attract more visitors but also provide Pacificans with their needs. This can create more local jobs, decrease enviro damaging commute traffic, and provide the needed tax revenues. We need to have Pacificans spend their money here. We must make big changes if we are to survive as a city. Time to replace the incumbents with people who know the meaning of the word balance. Balancing our budget can only be achieved with a balanced tax revenue base. Arietta, Vellone and Stone are my choices.

Kathy Meeh said...

Ditto, Jeff, Steve, Markus...and do vote for
pro-economy Arietta, Vellone and Stone for city council.

Mr. Sir, turned his focus into a dog park conversation, so here's my 2 cents about that. For those who haven't been out of the Pacifica for a while, don't know better, or don't understand the difference-- most bay area cities provide and maintain a dog park or dog parks for people and their dogs.

History in this city. About 8 years ago this city passed a "dogs must be on-leash" ordinance. However, at that time the city did not provide an accessible "dog park" or dog running area. So that was a mistake. A few years later city council provided a dog running area on the beach at the bottom of Manor cliffs with no easily accessible human/dog access, then the stairs washed away (so no access). And, that was a mistake compounded.

Different location: dogs may have been allowed to run on Sharp Park beach, but I believe the current transitioned answer is: no dogs off-leash. This was possible dog access take back, which may have has something to do with city council and their the GGNRA friends.

Dogs need exercise, play and socialization to be healthy, just as we humans do. One of our local Vet estimates was that 18-22% city households includes dogs (where one or more dogs may reside).

Mr. Sir, are you really concerned about spending city money, or is it that you and your buddies really don't want to share the public space at Sanchez Artist Center for a dog park?

Don't worry, over the past 8 years plenty of city "general fund" money has been wasted, but as Jeff pointed-out a dog park is a civic benefit. And as Steve and Marcus commented, trails here are of little economic value.

Money wasted by city council over the past few years, which has been of little to no economic value, most of which has had a negative impact on our community includes the following and more. Last year (including 12/08) about $155,000 was approved for trails, 2008-9, $200,000+ for the total biodiesel fiasco, about $80,000+ to convenience Pacificans we needed new tax (Measure D), about $200,000 for egocentric city council beach front city hall DEIR(s), about $50,000 for Palmetto streetscape. Sewer spill fines, more than $2 million dollars. Other consultant costs, and the huge legal budget used to fry developers, a few good employees, and franchise vendors--in total: priceless.

So, Mr. Sir, here you are bitching about the volunteer citizens who have worked for 4 years to scrape up enough money and put forth a dog park civic improvement? Same uphill effort for a city museum, 21st century library, even for the honor to pick-up trash on the beach and elsewhere. Maybe try to get out-of-town and see how most other functional city communities live.

Rocky said...

"The trails have hardly brought any money into the city...I doubt a dog park would, either."

A dog friendly business model in conjunction with off leash recreation facilities would. Certainly the city of Carmel model proves that. So does Chestnut Street in the SF Marina district with its proximity to Crissy Field. As some of you may remember, Sharp Park Beach was officially designated an off-leash beach years ago, but the current Council revoked that status by way of a procedural ploy. I personally have friends from San Francisco who came to Sharp Park Beach in the last year thinking the beach was still off-leash. They were ticketed and won't return. These dog people do spend money when they travel to dog friendly areas. The GGNRA has made its intentions clear as to the elimination of off leash at Ocean Beach and Crissy Field this fall. Had the City Council retained the Sharp Park Dog Beach, Pacifica would be the only off leash beach north of Carmel Beach extending into Marin. Many of the Bay Area residents who like to take their dog and families to the beach would surely flock to Sharp Park Beach and the Palmetto shops who choose to be dog-friendly.

Anonymous said...

"We desperately need additional local commercial establishments not only to attract more visitors but also provide Pacificans with their needs. ... We need to have Pacificans spend their money here."

How do you make that happen?

Steve Sinai said...

"How do you make that happen?"

You start by replacing the the business-hostile group of Lancelle, Digre, Vreeland and DeJarnatt with new council-members who work to bring businesses into town. Two candidates, Stone and Vellone, are in the local Chamber of Commerce, so they get points.

What's the biggest economic accomplishment of the above-mentioned Gang of Four since they took over in 2002? Kragen? A tiny farmer's market that operates a handful of hours per year? They wouldn't even let a hot dog cart operate at Linda Mar Beach.

Anonymous said...

Let's get back to the issue. Vellone is a Republican with knee jerk solutions and distracting appearance. And, Stone...well he is even further to the right with no experience and has not yet developed manners. If you call this moderate in any way, you are absolutely clueless or lying. Neither have any idea how to help the city. What a shame! The moderates are losing again since these two make Arietta look good and we all know about her. This will simply continue what is wrong with our city. How depressing.

Markus said...

Anon @ 8:16

"We desperately need additional local commercial establishments not only to attract more visitors but also provide Pacificans with their needs. ... We need to have Pacificans spend their money here."
How do you make that happen?

At the risk of sounding repetitive, you make that happen with the right kind of development in the OWWTP, Quarry and the old Horizon properties, to name a few, we can attract and capture more visitors and travelers willing to spend here.

Specifically, the city owned prime oceanfront property (OWWTP) with a near by pier, was appraised @ $8 million a few years ago. Developers with some imagination would view such a property with potential to cater to a variety of people, including golfers, hikers, fisherman, travelers, tourists, surfers, beach-goers, meeting planners and yes, locals. Perhaps a nice hotel with convention/meeting availability, along with cluster establishments like retail shops, restaurants & nightlife, art galleries, museum, roller skating rink, and whatever else.. I hope you get the picture. Instead of generating revenues, this prime property has been adding vermin and blight for the past 9 years.
Given several failed past attempts its obvious that no reputable developer will be willing to touch Pacifica with the present sitting “FAB 4” council members holding majority. This is why we must replace the 3 contested council seats with fresh people holding broader visions for Pacifica’s future. The incumbents have had 8-12 years to make something happen besides land giveaways, trails, volunteerism and raising fees & taxes.

Rocky, your comment is right on.

Steve Sinai said...

Hmmm, perhaps Anon is either Vreeland, Leon or Clifford.

Markus said...

O.K. Anon, since you seem to know so much about Arrieta, Stone & Vellone, why don’t you enlighten us about some of the negative claims you make about them. In addition, what candidates are you supporting? If its Vreeland and DeVree, can you give us a couple of examples of their past accomplishments?

Anonymous said...

Actually I am a member of the Chamber and embarrassed by what is going on. And who will I vote for? Absolutely no one at this point. I am just disappointed.

Steve Sinai said...

It's hard to believe you're a member of the Chamber, Anon.

Kathy Meeh said...

Anon,8/12, 10:26pm I think we have enjoyed a "quick sand" version of "moderate" and "experience" for 8 long years. As a result, the financial stability of this city is in "free fall". However, as you know the city council is a non-partisan position.

I read Len Stone's campaign statement today, and found him to be a perfectly centrist with regard to this city. According to direct comments from Susan Vellone and Barbara Arietta, they agree on most city issues. Since you brought up partisan politics Susan is a moderate Republican, Barbara is a moderate Democrat. Again, the focus is city, this city, and issues of partisan politics are irrelevant.

Also, I find no merit in the balance of your negative "slam for everyone pro-economy" comments. Maybe you should take a vacation, you might feel better. Or, here's an idea: send Arietta, Vellone and Stone each a campaign contribution and volunteer to support their campaigns.

3 pro-economy candidates to Fix Pacifica, or more of the same. Had enough yet?

Kathy Meeh said...

So, what's your problem with the Chamber of Commerce this year, Anon 8/12, 11:31pm?

Anonymous said...

His statement has nothing to do with the reality of Len Stone. Spend time with him and there is enough said.

What makes you think any of these people will actually make a difference and not make things worse. Your three think the know it all and frankly they do not.

However, I don't want the incumbents and what is on the other side scares me. There are no good candidates, except possibly the unknowns like Tanner and the other guy.

Anonymous said...

The Calera freeway--who's for it?
If you like freeways, ask the candidates their position on the issue.
It's a permanent kinda thing, you know? Like, it can't be undone, long after politicians are a distant memory.

Anonymoose said...

Why do you keep calling it a freeway, Anon? None of the stoplights are being removed.
Are you one of those people who proclaim a secret conspiracy on the part of SMCTA and Caltrans to eventually remove all the stoplights on Highway 1? Is there a hidden plan to hook-up Highway 1 directly with I-380?

Is it your plan to keep coming to this site to throw out phony accusations? I bet you've never even met Len Stone, Susan Vellone, or Barbara Arietta.

Markus said...

As Steve & Kathy pointed out, Barbara was very instrumental in the fight to save Sharp Park golf course. When I got involved initially, I was doing volunteer work for Richard Harris of the San Francisco Public Golf Alliance. Barbara formed a local citizen advocacy group (PCC), Pacifica Community Coalition to save the golf course. Under her leadership and guidance, the members accomplished several well calculated tasks to help save the course. These included passing out door to door flyers to the course adjacent neighborhoods, gathering signatures @ both Safeway parking lots, which she submitted to the SF Board of Supervisors, kept all members well informed regarding any relevant SF Board of Supervisors & PB&R meetings and got many of the members to attend above meetings to state our opinions in favor of the course.
I personally spent approx. 8 hrs. handing out door to door flyers, 6 hrs. gathering signatures and attended 2 SF supervisor meetings @ SF City hall. I must say, all the hard work and time spent by PCC members was dwarfed in comparison to the endless hours Barbara put in in making sure everything was timely coordinated and members kept informed. Yes, Barbara has some minor personality flaws (none of us are perfect) she needs to address, but overall her endless energy, dedication and inside knowledge of the political process and relevant players, made it possible to help save the course. I am confident her hard work, knowledge and dedication will be a big plus for all of us wanting to affect positive changes in this drowning city. I am still waiting to hear about some of Jim Vreeland’s & Sue Digre’s past accomplishments. I am certainly aware of many concerns they neglected or screwed up which largely contributed to this city’s present woes. This city has been in a nose dive for the past decade. Our Environment is (NOT) our economy!! Eco tourism alone, can’t work here largely due to the inclement summertime weather and insufficient infrastructure.

Anonymous said...

Oh no, freeways are very important and Kathy knows what people will do when elected.
That's very important too.
Which of the candidates has a Tea Party rally poster at their place of business?
Kathy may know that too.

Kathy Meeh said...

Thanks Anonymous, I know "everything" including you have not good intentions here.

Still having problems figuring-out the difference between a freeway vs. fixing 1.3 miles of road on a highway? A friend mentioned Pacifica hasn't crawled out of the 1970's-- that's 40 years ago. Anyone know how old that highway is? No real improvements since then, and its the only through road in and out of town.

Do inform us which candidate has a Tea Party rally poster in their business? Personally I can hardly wait to hear that trivia in your pursuit to twist national with local politics and failed city council function. Should be fun.

Steve Sinai said...

It looks like Anon has decided to do the dirty work for the "Keep Pacifica Poor" candidates of Vreeland, Digre, Leon, Clifford and Davidson by coming onto this site to throw out vague, fictitious accusations against opposing candidates.

Of course, none of the phony accusations will ever have confirmable evidence or someone's real name to back them up.

Markus said...

Scare tactics and more scare tactics. Steve, I agree Mr.Anon is on a sinister mission to confuse, instill doubt and divide people on this blog. Has no ideas or answers for anything specifically being discussed. Anon is using the very old Machiavellian tactic of DIVIDE & CONQUER. It will only carry so far. The incumbents will have to face the now more informed Pacifica public in the near future. They will have to answer many questions and defend their failed past performance.

Anonymous said...

Do people remember during the last Quarry battle that all the naysayers were talking about traffic and how anything built in the Quarry would cripple the City? Aren't these the same no growth folks that are against widening Highway 1? We need new blood at Council and just because Julie left does not mean a clone like Leon or Clifford gets in. Isn't funny that Leon waited until Julie said no to even put in his papers? Do not let the no growthers win this time. The Quarry vote was close and look where we have gotten since then.More taxes needed to even maintain the City. No matter what spin the same old same old put on this, some people do have a memory of exactly what did happen.

Anonymous said...

Let's see who endorsed who? After that we could really think we are the followers of Lancelle, Vreeland , Digree. Mary Ann Nihart got pretty much endorsed by the present council friends.

They all know how to play the game. I am starting to believe that so far Vellone and Stone. Actually it rhymes. Easy to remember.

Steve Sinai said...

Does anyone understand the previous comment?

Anonymous said...

I think Nihart's only endorsement from city council really Vreeland and look how that worked out for him. They have sniped each other publicly. Endorsements mean very little. They say more about the endorser and in san Mateo county, endorsements follow the party line rather than being about who would do the best job.

Anonymous said...

Our first Tea Party candidate!
How exciting.

Kathy Meeh said...

Anon @6:45pm, what does not agreeing on issues and having actual dialog at city council have to do with the price of tea? What are the issue in which Nihart and Vreeland do not agree?

Did Anon @7:38pm actually drink the tea? Note this Anon is still acting coy, now the Tea Party poster has become a Tea Party candidate, which has zero to do with fixing Pacifica. Just give us a balanced, sustainable city economy, a city budget that makes sense, and realistic hope and a substantial plan for an improved city future.

Anonymous said...

Well Kathy. Let's start with the Mega Home ordinance. Vreeland voted for it. Nihart did not. I think twice. Then, budget and more.

Anonymous said...

Kathy, just be careful what you wish for, you might get it.