Incumbent Councilwoman Julie Testa probably benefited from having two candidates split the vote and easily won re-election in the unofficial balloting in Pleasanton’s first district election. Her margin is comfortable over Joel Liu and former school trustee Jamie Yee.
In the other race for the seat that Kathy Narum is vacating because of term limits, Planning Commissioner Jeff Nibert easily topped Dean Wallace. Expect him to align with the majority leaving Councilman Jack Balch as the voice for business and economic development.
It will be interesting to see how the four members cope with the state-mandate to zone land for nearly 6,000 new units over the next eight years. The state requirement now has teeth and both newly re-elected Gov. Gavin Newsom and Attorney General Rob Bonta have demonstrated their willingness to demand municipalities follow the law. New state laws have given builders and homeowners (ADUs) more clout and options when dealing with cities.
If you’re looking to celebrate Veteran’s Day today (that’s the word the local American Legion leader said is appropriate to the Pleasanton Men’s Club Tuesday) head for Carnegie Park in downtown Livermore. The Livermore post 7265 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars will hold a great war remembrance in the park from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The official ceremony starts at 10:45 a.m. to commemorate Armistice Day (the end of World War I) and Veteran’s Day.
It will be followed by a free po-boy barbecue with your choice of tri-tip, pulled pork, chicken or smoked sausage plus with appropriate side dishes. Given the stormy weather has passed, it’s a wonderful opportunity to follow on last Sunday’s parade in Pleasanton and salute our veterans.
Incidentally, the announcement that Barone’s, site of men’s club luncheons as well as many special occasions and business lunches for decades, will close on New Year’s Eve made Tuesday’s lunch bittersweet. Joe Barone has been a successful restauranteur for years and managed to pivot through several economic challenges over the last 27 years. He and his wife, Marciela, opened in 1985 just as the Pleasanton economy was expanding rapidly with four new business parks as well as Stoneridge Shopping Center.
It was a favorite business lunch spot for many until the market shifted and Joe moved to dinners only, plus their popular summer outdoor events.
The Barones reside next to the restaurant and own what may be the largest single parcel in the core downtown area. A developer has proposed a residential project (the Barone home is the buffer between the property and adjoining residents) that was not well-received by the Planning Commission. What’s next for both Joe and Marciela and the property is an open question.