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Editorial: Vote Yes on Measure P in Livermore, in favor of city's hotel agreement

Voters in the city of Livermore will again weigh in on the downtown redevelopment debate with Measure P, a ballot issue resulting from a referendum petition challenging the City Council's approval of a hotel development agreement in the summer.

The hotel agreement with developer Presidio calls for a three-story hotel with 125-135 rooms next to the Bankhead Theater on the east side of Livermore Avenue. The hotel project is the centerpiece of the city's downtown redevelopment plan.

The hotel location is a main source of disagreement for the No on Measure P folks. They instead want a larger hotel (up to 160 rooms) on the west side of Livermore Avenue, in keeping with their alternative idea for downtown overall.

We support the council-approved agreement in line with the city's Downtown Specific Plan that received significant community support, from widespread sources throughout Livermore, during an extensive public outreach and review process.

The city's downtown planning was the central issue of the Livermore mayoral and council elections in November 2018, and voters overwhelmingly endorsed vocal supporters of the city plan. In fact, the opposition couldn't even really convince any candidate to back their position against the city's proposal -- even though one council seat was open for the taking by any challenger.

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After that election, the newly seated council worked to solidify a downtown redevelopment vision vetted by the public.

But the opponents are back again, aiming to overturn the hotelier agreement (so a Yes on Measure P is in favor of the council plan, and a No is against it), along with a related initiative measure espousing their "Central Park Plan" scheduled for the November election.

Despite efforts of initiative backers to argue contrary, it is hard to consider their "Central Park Plan" as nothing more than an unvetted idea that hinges on an infancy-stage conceptual drawing -- a smoke screen conjured to confuse the citizenry and conceal some yet-unclear true motivation.

We encourage Livermore voters to seek out accurate information and fair perspectives when researching Measure P. And we hope they continue to see through the misinformation -- and disinformation -- pushed primarily by the interests of a small faction of well-funded residents.

The city's hotel agreement calls for an appropriately sized facility in the best location to enhance the vitality of downtown. And more importantly, it is the first step in bringing the community's vision for redeveloping downtown to fruition.

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Vote Yes on Measure P in Livermore.

Editor's note: Our editorial board reached its decision after meeting with representatives of the declared campaigns on both sides.

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Editorial: Vote Yes on Measure P in Livermore, in favor of city's hotel agreement

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Uploaded: Thu, Jan 30, 2020, 1:45 pm

Voters in the city of Livermore will again weigh in on the downtown redevelopment debate with Measure P, a ballot issue resulting from a referendum petition challenging the City Council's approval of a hotel development agreement in the summer.

The hotel agreement with developer Presidio calls for a three-story hotel with 125-135 rooms next to the Bankhead Theater on the east side of Livermore Avenue. The hotel project is the centerpiece of the city's downtown redevelopment plan.

The hotel location is a main source of disagreement for the No on Measure P folks. They instead want a larger hotel (up to 160 rooms) on the west side of Livermore Avenue, in keeping with their alternative idea for downtown overall.

We support the council-approved agreement in line with the city's Downtown Specific Plan that received significant community support, from widespread sources throughout Livermore, during an extensive public outreach and review process.

The city's downtown planning was the central issue of the Livermore mayoral and council elections in November 2018, and voters overwhelmingly endorsed vocal supporters of the city plan. In fact, the opposition couldn't even really convince any candidate to back their position against the city's proposal -- even though one council seat was open for the taking by any challenger.

After that election, the newly seated council worked to solidify a downtown redevelopment vision vetted by the public.

But the opponents are back again, aiming to overturn the hotelier agreement (so a Yes on Measure P is in favor of the council plan, and a No is against it), along with a related initiative measure espousing their "Central Park Plan" scheduled for the November election.

Despite efforts of initiative backers to argue contrary, it is hard to consider their "Central Park Plan" as nothing more than an unvetted idea that hinges on an infancy-stage conceptual drawing -- a smoke screen conjured to confuse the citizenry and conceal some yet-unclear true motivation.

We encourage Livermore voters to seek out accurate information and fair perspectives when researching Measure P. And we hope they continue to see through the misinformation -- and disinformation -- pushed primarily by the interests of a small faction of well-funded residents.

The city's hotel agreement calls for an appropriately sized facility in the best location to enhance the vitality of downtown. And more importantly, it is the first step in bringing the community's vision for redeveloping downtown to fruition.

Vote Yes on Measure P in Livermore.

Editor's note: Our editorial board reached its decision after meeting with representatives of the declared campaigns on both sides.

Comments

Brian Yes on P
Livermore
on Jan 31, 2020 at 12:27 am
Brian Yes on P, Livermore
on Jan 31, 2020 at 12:27 am
8 people like this

Thank you PLEASANTON weekly for supporting Measure P and the majority of Livermore voters who kept the council that was in favor of the current APPROVED plan


Jeff K
Livermore
on Feb 1, 2020 at 10:07 pm
Jeff K, Livermore
on Feb 1, 2020 at 10:07 pm
3 people like this

"...a smoke screen conjured to confuse the citizenry and conceal some yet-unclear true motivation." Really? You're relying on mysterious conspiracy theories now? Is the editorial board thinking that there's a zombie horde manipulating the plan, or perhaps the hotel will cover a secret n-th dimension worm-hole? Like the plan or not, give your reasons for or against, but when you have to sink to this as your defense - eeesh. Of course we expect that the Pleasanton paper would not support something that has the support of anyone related to the Livermore paper, that's the Times' norm, fair enough. But besides the VooDoo scare tactics, it might be within some journalistic standards to note that while the No on P is funded by locals, the Yes campaign signs and ads are paid by Presidio, the developer hoping to profit from Measure P. I'm not suggesting you would change your endorsement, but since you are disclosing "interests", this seems pretty relevant. When billion-dollar out of town companies are trying to buy Livermore votes, that seems a pretty good reason to vote No on P.


Jeff K
Livermore
on Feb 2, 2020 at 11:23 am
Jeff K, Livermore
on Feb 2, 2020 at 11:23 am
3 people like this

Yes, above I said "Times" should have said "Weekly." Apologies.


Rob Parker
Livermore
on Feb 2, 2020 at 8:12 pm
Rob Parker, Livermore
on Feb 2, 2020 at 8:12 pm
7 people like this

Jeff K provides more fake news by the Central Park Drawing supporters. At the last Livermore City Council meeting, the Central Park Drawing supporters voiced no issues with Presidio as the developer, but rather insisted that Presidio should build the hotel on the westside of Livermore Ave. Presidio had responded to the original RFP a few years ago, going through the legal diligence process. Presidio even lowered the hotel height from four to three stories as the Central Park Drawing supporters had wanted. The Central Park Drawing supporters claim there is another hotel developer interested, but insist on keeping this developer a secret so we can't "compare and decide". We are supposed to "believe" their cartoon drawing that is deliberately not drawn to scale to mislead and shows no parking for a westside hotel. This mystery developer did not respond to the original RFP, but should have. Also, the financial disclosure records seem to indicate that a majority of the money donated to Citizens for a Central Park committee comes from non-Livermore residents, with some donors residing outside of Alameda County.


sjd
Livermore
on Feb 3, 2020 at 8:09 pm
sjd, Livermore
on Feb 3, 2020 at 8:09 pm
6 people like this

Jeff,

You might notice that the Weekly interviewed people from both sides. Check with your representative why they couldn't convince the Weekly that there was a real reason.

"When billion-dollar out of town companies are trying to buy Livermore votes,"
Pot, meet kettle.

You complain that Presidio defends their development agreement, but at least they actually put their name on the signs at $50,000. Ask yourself why your 5 friends (one of whom self-reports their address in New Hampshire, one in Palo Alto) all spent $99,800 each in 2019 alone across the two "Park Plan"-related committees, just under the mark where they'd have to declare themselves on any signs.

And that's saying about the Friends of Livermore group separate from those 2 committees.

Ask yourself why they don't want to put their names on something they clearly back with a lot of money. Why not an even $50k? Heck, only 1 of the 5 even has the courage to put their name on the No on P website that you've put your name on.


sjd
Livermore
on Feb 3, 2020 at 8:10 pm
sjd, Livermore
on Feb 3, 2020 at 8:10 pm
2 people like this

*saying nothing about*
Alas, even I too fall prey to mistakes.


Sebastian Max
Livermore
on Feb 4, 2020 at 8:38 pm
Sebastian Max, Livermore
on Feb 4, 2020 at 8:38 pm
3 people like this

Actually there is an interesting story behind this implication that the candidates recently seated on the council supported the outgoing Council's lame plan.

Council (member) "Trish" Munro didn't support the plan until she realized that pretending to support it would cement an alliance with some of the incumbents like Mayor McCheese; she is a professional leftwing radical Zionist (her own words) and America-hating agitator (my opinion of her) that broke out the race/class cards in an editorial letter to complain that the city workshops to get feedback from residents were not "representative" of the voters of Livermore because the attendees were too white, too middle-class, and too old to be representative. Never mind that she herself would be considered by nearly everyone to be the *epitome* of all of these innate characteristics.

Well, the events were open to all - so whose fault is it that other people with the skin colors and income more preferable to Marxist agitators, didn't bother to show up??

Maybe the voters should look behind the curtain and understand that these people will say anything they think will get them some political power. Look into these new council members, but I warn you, it is like a visit to a sausage factory. You won't feel the same way about it afterwards.




Robby24
Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 24, 2020 at 11:23 pm
Robby24, Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 24, 2020 at 11:23 pm
Like this comment

Supporters of Central Park Drawing claim that another hotel developer is interested,Web Link but insist on keeping this developer a secret so that we cannot “compare and decide”.


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