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TONIGHT! Council candidates face off at Pleasanton Weekly forum

Original post made on Apr 8, 2013

Candidates for a single seat open on the Pleasanton City Council will face off tonight at a community forum being hosted by the Pleasanton Weekly.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, April 5, 2013, 8:02 AM

Comments (37)

Posted by Sally Clapsaddle, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 8, 2013 at 8:48 am

This has the potential to be a great venue to hear the candidates. However, I do have some concerns about the PW management moderating the questions. Since they have demonstrated their liberal politics on many occasions, there is certainly the potential for them to inflict liberal bias into the questions they pass through to the candidates and how they control the debate.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 8, 2013 at 10:47 am

Hi Clap...the limited information, misleading comments, and lies from the candidates is what is going to control the debate...that has nothing to do with PW management.

Your comments about PW is all about trying to distort, even before any debate, how others hear the responses by candidates.

give it a rest...


Posted by Ptown native, a resident of Stoneridge
on Apr 8, 2013 at 4:03 pm

Hey Cholo, this is Pleasanton politics not Livermore.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 8, 2013 at 6:50 pm

listen up...lying and misleading others is an art!


Posted by Relax, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 9, 2013 at 12:43 pm

Is Sally saying it's not her cup of "Tea"?


Posted by Sarah, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 9, 2013 at 6:58 pm

Here at the council candidates forum and Olivia is knocking it out of the park. She is strong poised and answers the questions! We need her on the council! She represents a group that has no voice on the council. She is the leadership we need, bright, young, fresh!

I have made up my mind! Olivia for Pleasanton City Council!


Posted by Kayla, a resident of Highland Oaks
on Apr 9, 2013 at 7:06 pm

Narum lists her achievements by listing the committees and tasks forces she sits on, but WHAT have YOU DONE? Where have you shown leadership? Just sitting on a committee doesn't impress me!


Posted by Kayla, a resident of Highland Oaks
on Apr 9, 2013 at 7:06 pm

Narum lists her achievements by listing the committees and tasks forces she sits on, but WHAT have YOU DONE? Where have you shown leadership? Just sitting on a committee doesn't impress me!


Posted by Jill, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 9, 2013 at 8:22 pm

Sarah, what group that has no voice on the council is she representing? Last I heard she was supported by the public employee unions. Is that the group? Cheryl is the only public employee insider on the council now and she terms out in two years so she apparently needs another person to help her increase union benefits. That is at least why Cheryl has endorsed her.


Posted by Voter, a resident of Country Fair
on Apr 9, 2013 at 9:11 pm

Sarah,
I don't know what Council Candidate Forum you were at, because Olivia came across very naive and highly uninformed. All she did was ramble on with no practical solutions. This is the feed back we were receiving from the audience. She needs to study and do her homework, when it comes to the City of Pleasanton politics.


Posted by Marty, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 9, 2013 at 9:33 pm

I disagree and thought Olivia came across the best of the 4 candidates tonight. She cited numerous concrete examples and seemed very polished and articulate.

Millier's comment about the potential election of narum causing a "super majority" was spot on. Jerry Thorne's campaign manager running for his open seat? It smacks of insider politics and old school backscratching...which is not what pleasanton really needs.


Posted by Interested, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 9, 2013 at 10:03 pm

I was there too and the buzz I was hearing was all about Olivia. Even people who seemed to support someone else were paying attention and wowing over Olivia's answers. She is clearly bright and engaged.


Posted by Miller lost my vote, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 9, 2013 at 10:43 pm

I came in hoping to learn more about everyone with slant toward Miller as fiscal health is critical.

Miller lost my vote as all he does is bash the process and people who have served city but does not have specific solutions to make things better. I am looking for a leader who is able to see a problem but also create a solution. Also question his credibility. For example, he says he was very involved with trying to change RHNA and housing task force work. However facts show he never showed up or spoke at these key meetings (I reviewed the minutes as you can as well and you will not see his name).
At least 2 of the other 3 candidates consider fiscal health to be critical and had plans. I will look elsewhere.


Posted by Sal, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 10, 2013 at 7:52 am

Olivia was hands down the best of the four. She proved to be very smart and in touch with the reality of Pleasanton issues.


Posted by Lulu, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2013 at 8:15 am

Yep, Olivia all the way. I came in a Narum fan, and left an Olivia supporter. Articulate, friendly, current on issues and a future winner.

I had no idea how many groups she volunteers on. A busy lady.


Posted by Narum seemed most knowledgeable, a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Apr 10, 2013 at 9:20 am

I was impressed with the work all the candidates did to prepare for this debate. No slouchers. That was nice to see. My take was:

o Olivia Sanwang- nice and energetic person who is trying hard but has just one year of experience on one of the most junior city committees. Appeared naive and not well informed on the details of many issues. Would like to see her get more experience and come back in a few years as i think she has potential.

o David Miller - Appeared very angry and i wonder how he will ever collaborate with others. It takes 3 votes to make a difference. He also made many false claims and seems to just say and do what he wants no matter who he runs over (for example siad he was very involved with housing element and RHNA process to fight it but meeting minutes do not show he ever attended any of these meetings). He did signs his way to promote himself without thinking about fair sportsmanship.

o Kathy Narum - appeared to have more Pleasanton civic experience than the other 3 candidates combined. Was also impressed that 100% of her peers on the Park and Rec and Planning commission support here, even though they are a diverse team. That says a lot. Kathy seemed to have good new ideas to keep downtown and the city healthy as well which i appreciated. Did not agree with all her positions but all in all I felt she was thoughtful in how she reached them and that is kind of independent thinker i am looking for.

Mark Hamilton - Nice and passionate person about city and schools. Clearly has contributed a lot to kids and school community. Running a grassroots campign to help Pleasanton. Appears Mark does not have much experience outside school area and would like to see him get more involved in other areas and give a nother try at this in future.



Posted by Pension Reformer, a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Apr 10, 2013 at 9:38 am

By throwing more population and "any-income" housing at Pleasanton, it won't fix thee biggest issue which other CA municipalities have -- unfunded pension obligations. In this bubble economy we can *bet* on another boom/bust 4 years and STILL have an even LARGER unfunded pension liability down the road, we're simply kicking the can for our children/grandchildren to pay for later. THEN it will just be BANKRUPTCY. David Miller will clean up the books, and yes will be painful, but would rather take our medicine with a smaller debt vs. an even larger one 4 years from now. The hard question that didn't come up last night is this -- which of these four Candidates are strongly behind United Nations/Agenda21/OneBayArea -- if you own property in CA, that is thee second biggest issue with which you should be concerned. Olivia = Agenda21


Posted by Not a fan of Narum, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Apr 10, 2013 at 10:58 am

I was there too, and I cannot believe Kathy NARUM is still pushing for a park on the Oak Grove land! What is she thinking?! It was put to a vote of the people and they said NO!! Is she thick headed or just stupid.

What people are saying about her is that she will take money from anyone may be true. Now I know why the Parks people support her, she is still trying to revive the old hillside park at the expense of neighbors in the area. Next there will be money from the Lin Family?

GET A CLUE - what is the matter with you Narum? My vote is for anyone but Narum.


Posted by Jen, a resident of Country Fair
on Apr 10, 2013 at 11:04 am

What are you talking about?!? I was there and Narum never once pushed for a park on oak grove. She was the only candidate who even understood the history behind Pam grove.

Did miller even live here during the oak grove debate?!?

Kathy is the most knowledgeable candidate and the only one with proven leadership skills.

I went in undecided and came out a real Narum fan!


Posted by Joy, a resident of Mohr Park
on Apr 10, 2013 at 11:09 am

My kids go to Mohr and I was really upset over the letter sent by David Miller's wife. It had some misrepresentations and wrong assumptions in it. So much about the schools I thought he was running for school board.

Narum keeps talking about sitting on multiple committees. Just being on a committee doesn't make you a leader. I am also concerned with her ties to the development community. Looking at her contributions you see business and development and the same ole' group. Not much variation in interest there. All nice people but really just one segment of the community.

I still don't know much about Hamilton.

Olivia, while young, sounded the most intelligent and assertive of the bunch. I like the fact that she IS young, has CURRENT business experience and has the educational background to back it up. She seems to understand that there needs to be a balance. I think she speaks young families in this community. I think she will bring a fresh perspective to the council.

Olivia has my vote



Posted by Not a fan of Narum, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Apr 10, 2013 at 11:15 am

sorry you missed it, but yes, Narum talked about getting land for a park and/or a link in the trail system. I am guessing she meant the trail from Shadow cliffs to the golf course.


Posted by Chemist, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 10, 2013 at 11:19 am

Olivia has a lot of her people responding to this blog. I was at the forum: she is naive, uninformed, and her ideas border on nonsense.
Narum's only qualification is that she sits on a lot of committees. She has way too much time on her hands. Her money is coming from developers and we can count on a lot more development than we need if she is elected.
Mark Hamilton and Dave Miller were both impressive: neither of them comes with Pleasanton political baggage, and they don't owe favors to any endorsers. I am concerned that Mark is too "school oriented" - yes there are school programs that are underfunded, but that is because the administration is overfunded.
Dave Miller will watch out for the plain old citizens of Pleasanton who pay the taxes to keep it running.


Posted by Miller?, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Miller can't do it by himself and he acts like this is a solitary exercise! He won't get my vote!


Posted by Listening senior, a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Apr 10, 2013 at 12:29 pm

I stayed for the first hour. PW was balanced in its managing the forum. Questions were good, one or two even great. It sounded from the responses that either all guessed what they'd be, or had seen them.

Hamilton impressed by his independence and school focus. However, more balance in town would improve his CV for a Council seat.

Miller seemed to offer platitudes, rarely giving specific and direct answers to the questions. His negativity played throughout.

Narum needed to speak louder - you'd think her co-chairing and commission experience in that room would have helped. She had a good command answering questions directly and specifically. [Naysayers missed her details on her contributors if they think 20% and $250 max play for pay.]

Sanwang did impress with her poise, voice, enthusiasm, youth. Too much focus on social media in her answers as solutions was the biggest negative, with her downtown residency repeats next.

All in all, I think the women played to the overflow crowd better than the men. I left early, as I didn't want to be buttonholed by a fan - I will continue to watch the mudslinging and misrepresentations and make up my mind nearer the deadline.


Posted by Sal, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 10, 2013 at 1:56 pm

Chemist (sure you are),

I love now you call Olivia "naive" because of her youth. I see, so you have to be a middle-aged, right-wing sadist with empty platitudes to pass your Fox News-inspired litmus test. Distort all you want but last night Olivia proved be the smartest and most pragmatic of the bunch. Speaking of naive, I guess Miller was conveniently naive to the agreed upon campaign sign protocol and to fighting housing lawsuits that have already been settled.
BTW, I'd bet my life you're not a "chemist".


Posted by June, a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Apr 10, 2013 at 2:19 pm

I believe Ms. Narum is the most informed and experienced candidate. The reference to a park at Oak Grove was open space and trail to link with other trails nearby. She voted that a vehicle roadway is not permitted by Measure PP in the (Oak Grove) hillsides.

Mr. Miller and Mr. Hamilton appear to be nice people, but I do not think they understand the complexities of the issues. In other words, the old politic sound bites to attract votes are, just old.

I appreciate and applaud the candidates for keeping an upbeat tone and obviously they all spent time to gather information and give their views. Whether I agree with them or not, there is no reason to vilify any one.


Posted by June, a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Apr 10, 2013 at 2:19 pm

I believe Ms. Narum is the most informed and experienced candidate. The reference to a park at Oak Grove was open space and trail to link with other trails nearby. She voted that a vehicle roadway is not permitted by Measure PP in the (Oak Grove) hillsides.

Mr. Miller and Mr. Hamilton appear to be nice people, but I do not think they understand the complexities of the issues. In other words, the old politic sound bites to attract votes are, just old.

I appreciate and applaud the candidates for keeping an upbeat tone and obviously they all spent time to gather information and give their views. Whether I agree with them or not, there is no reason to vilify any one.


Posted by john, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2013 at 3:29 pm

"I was at the forum: she is naive, uninformed, and her ideas border on nonsense."

That's a little light on specifics, don't you think "Chemist"?


Posted by Mary, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2013 at 3:51 pm

"Posted by Sarah,
Here at the council candidates forum"

Hey "Sarah", Saw you in the side room posting during the forum. I can't blame you for promoting your candidate here. Olivia seems nice but she had little to offer last night.

If this was high school Kathy should win on the popular girl vote, but it's not.

I would vote for Mark as the guy I would most want to have a beer with, nice guy but not ready for council.

David Miller was the only candidate who stood out as a leader. David brings a perspective and strength that is needed on the council. I will vote for David Miller.


Posted by To Kayla and Chemist, a resident of Valley View Elementary School
on Apr 10, 2013 at 4:14 pm

Since when is participating on city committees and commissions a negative?!? Yes Narum has been involved in Pleasanton for 15 years in various positions from Pleasanton Seahawks to Parks and Recreation to the Planning Commission. But if you think she merely "sits" on these committees and doesn't do anything, you should spend hours like she does reading the pages and pages of documents in preparation for each meeting. See how much research she does on the issues before making a decision. Then you will come to the same conclusion I have: Narum takes her position on each committee very seriously and does her homework to make the decisions she believes are in the best interest of Pleasanton. Even if I don't agree with a decision she may make, I would never question her integrity, hard work, or dedication to making Pleasanton the best community possible. She has my vote.


Posted by BK, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 10, 2013 at 4:43 pm

Participating on city committees and commissions used to be a positive thing when city committee members and commission members used to drive the process and decision making.

Now it has turned around so that these members (and the city council by the way) are supposed to be mere listeners and watchers of powerpoint presentations, cut off from the very community they are supposed to represent. The employees of the city drive the topics, the decisin making and even micromanage the flow of discussions.

Commission members used to have their own email addresses. Now staff won't tell you what they are. They make the public send emails to staff.

City council members don't even have individual published email addresses anymore on the city's web page. If you look here and mouse over each picture and click Web Link even the city council's own individual email addresses have been taken away and are not published. Now to contact them, you have to send it to some staff group email address. City council members are cut off from the public that elected them in the first place.

All information that flows through the city staff is filtered through the city staff so that commission members and city council members in writing only get what the city employees allow to get to them.


Posted by fact checker X , a resident of Downtown
on Apr 10, 2013 at 10:26 pm

Was at debate last night and surprised to hear how many claims were maid by Miller that were false and also promises without any details. Not sure about you but I would never want to work with this man.

Claim:
o I fought low cost housing/RHNA and participated in key meetings

Fact:
o Checking minutes from task force meetings, did not see David,'s name mentioned once. I was at 80% of meetings and never saw him there once. Can David and team provide evidence of his attendance and confirmation of speeches he claimed to make??????

Claim: I will fight. The past council fought hard and I am not sure why they lost but I am sure I can be successful.
Fact: The Council lost over $3M fighting a losing battle and had a 5:0 vote including McGovern and Sullivan to settle. Had they not settled we could have lost 100% of control with "by right,"

David scares me as we could continue to lose millions and lose 100% of control with "by right" if he continues to fight his fight without understanding history and state laws.

I like David's passion and hope he gets more experience and creates collaborative relationships with others so he can give a try in the future and be successful.


Posted by George, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 13, 2013 at 11:01 am

Olivia Sanwong's vision is the future of the Tri-Valley. Her courageous embrace of Dublin's aesthetic and building practices will allow for all demographics to enjoy this beautiful valley and this amazing town called Pleasanton. Lean forward!


Posted by Pete, a resident of Fairlands Elementary School
on Apr 13, 2013 at 1:31 pm

Olivia Sanwong's and David Miller's vision for Pleasanton based on the courageous embrace of Dublin's aesthetic will result in Pleasanton's hills being carved up and bulldozed just like Dublin's in this picture Web Link


Posted by Just what has she done?, a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Apr 13, 2013 at 10:35 pm

Can anyone tell me just what Narum has done besides bash Miller and push for ridge top mega mansions down my street? She ran he campaign for the Mayor and is good friends with Pentin. All these guys are on her list of supporters. Sounds like a block of 3. I want independent thinkers, not a voting block.


Posted by Cindy, a resident of Jensen Tract
on Apr 14, 2013 at 10:09 pm

Join me and Vote for Olivia-I know she is above this fray.


Posted by Maggie, a resident of Valencia
on Apr 23, 2013 at 7:02 am

Unbelievable - received a campaign recording from Dave Miller at 6:35 AM. He will NOT be getting my vote!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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