Custom Search
CivicLifeSportsSchoolsBusinessFoodOur HomesLetters/OpinionsCalendar

Published October 5th, 2016
Letters to the Editor

Lafayette Measure C

No on Measure C
Dear Editor,
Lafayette has a $130 million city council chamber/library complex. The astronomical price is because of incredibly bad judgement and borrowing money. Now they want to borrow up to $58 million more on the anticipated earnings from Measure C, the 1 percent sales tax that will affect vehicle purchases, wherever they are purchased. We can’t escape this tax, like we can with other taxable products.
The number one goal of the city of Lafayette’s government is to borrow money to purchase the Golden Gate Plaza, a.k.a. The Lincoln Buildings, evict the poor tenants who will never find comparable rent in this area, demolish the buildings, then build an overpriced office building for their best friends, a.k.a. the city of Lafayette’s administrators and police. They already have given this project the fictitious name of “The Library Park.” They even mentioned turning the deep concrete flood control channel into a “natural” creek. In all appearances, this is impossible. Not merely a bad idea.
Purchasing the “Bridge” parking lot was the first step in this plan.
The politicians deny this is their plan. This reminds me of the old story about the snake that convinced someone to put him in their pocket. Then the snake bit the sweet, gullible person, then said; “You knew I was a snake.”
Be sure to vote No on Measure C.

Bruce R. Peterson

Invest in Lafayette – It’s Good for Business
Dear Editor,
The Board of Directors of the Lafayette Chamber of Commerce has endorsed Lafayette’s Measure C on the November ballot. We support the city council’s effort to fund the Citizens’ Vision for Lafayette for the coming decades. The Chamber has opposed sales tax increases in prior years when we did not feel that the economy or circumstances were right. There are several reasons this year’s proposal makes sense.
First, the city council has made clear that they are committed to investing the incremental sales taxes on improvements to make Lafayette a better place to live, dine and shop. Investing in efforts to reduce traffic congestion and improve parking downtown are both critical to the happiness of our customers and the continued success of our businesses. Finding land for new downtown parks and helping to revitalize the Park Theater will bring more pedestrians and bicycles to the downtown and increase the clientele at Lafayette businesses. Providing additional resources for police services will improve public safety for businesses and residents.
Second, the state has set a 10 percent cap on the sales tax for each community. We believe that if Lafayette does not act now, regional agencies will fill that cap space. Lafayette is best served if the additional sales tax money raised in Lafayette stays in Lafayette and is invested in projects that fulfill our Citizens’ Vision.
Finally, other cities are working on their own sales tax increments. More than half of the cities in Contra Costa County, including Orinda and Moraga, have already passed sales tax increments. We don’t believe that Measure C would create a competitive disadvantage for the businesses in Lafayette.
Measure C will make the Citizens’ Vision for Lafayette possible. We believe that it is good for the residents and it is good for businesses.
Invest in Lafayette – Vote Yes on Measure C.

Dennis Garrison
President-Board of Directors
Lafayette Chamber of Commerce

Love Lafayette – A City that Listens
Dear Editor,
A positive measure -- Measure C – is on the ballot in Lafayette to enable the Citizens’ Vision of Lafayette’s future. For the last year and a half, the city council reached out in open meetings and two rounds of polling to listen to the vision residents have for Lafayette over the coming decades.
While citizens expressed interest in many things, several priorities received very broad citizen support in each survey and community conversation. Those key elements of the Citizens’ Vision for the future of Lafayette include:
• Protecting open space from development
• Reducing downtown congestion
• Enhancing police protection
• Improving downtown parking
• Acquiring land for downtown parks
• Revitalizing the historic Park Theater
The revenue from Measure C will enable the city to invest in these priorities, and do so in smart ways that will help the city’s money go farther. As Chair of the Circulation Commission, a past member of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee, Chair of the Sales Tax Revenue Study Committee, and a member of the Lafayette Downtown Congestion Study Steering Committee, I have seen the city listen to what citizens want and then get the most for its citizens by leveraging its funds to obtain additional grants, and taking advantage of opportunities for public/private partnerships.
A positive measure – Measure C – is inspired by the Citizens’ Vision for Lafayette. If citizens approve the measure, the city will have the revenue to help fulfill the Citizens’ Vision for the city we all love.
Love Lafayette – Vote “Yes” on Measure C.

Kristina Sturm

Lafayette Schhool Board

Mark Kindhouse for LUSD
Dear Editor,
I don’t write letters to the editor often, but I wanted to express publicly my confidence in Mark Kindhouse for Lafayette School Board. It’s rare to have an opportunity to elect someone with a technical background to local office. This is especially important this term as the Lafayette School District begins spending the $70 million from its recent bond measure.
Mark is a civil engineer who has managed multi-million dollar projects, and has a deep understanding of infrastructure. He also has years of experience with governance and oversight having worked closely with executives and corporate boards. These particular skills – combined with his knowledge of the challenges our school district faces – are a rare find.
I saw Mark speak at the Lafayette Homeowners Council “Candidates and Issues” night on Sept. 22. There I heard Mark’s story, and I believe he understands what makes Lafayette so special. He strikes me as having both the mind and the heart for the job.
As a resident of our community for 25 years, I ask my fellow citizens to vote for Mark Kindhouse for Lafayette School Board on Nov. 8. Take the time to visit his website, or reach out to him by email. Get to know him. I think you’ll see the exceptional School Board member that I see.

Mike Anderson,
Vice Mayor, City of Lafayette

Sturm for Lafayette School Board
Dear Editor,
We all benefit from Lafayette’s high-quality schools, regardless of whether we have a school-aged child. To ensure good schools, we need competent and dedicated residents serving on the Lafayette Elementary School District Board. This election year is unusual as neither of the incumbents whose term is ending seeks re-election. Jean Follmer and Nancy Wallace have served us well and I thank them. Fortunately, three candidates are vying to take their place. I know that I will vote for Rob Sturm and encourage you to do the same.
I endorse Rob because I believe he fully embraces a commitment to continued academic excellence. Rob knows that maintaining educational preeminence requires careful fiscal management. Fortunately, residents approved school taxes to offset the declines of $1,100 per year in state support per student since 2008, despite increases in operating costs. However, the district’s current 2016-2017 budget includes structural deficit spending that is not sustainable and will require prompt, focused and thoughtful attention by the school board and school district to avoid future reductions that affect students.
Rob is an experienced attorney who successfully manages a large budget. We can count on him to ensure that unnecessary expense that does not benefit our children, the school district, teachers and our community is identified, analyzed, and, when possible, eliminated before the option of asking residents to approve new taxes is proposed.
Please join me in voting for Rob Sturm for the Lafayette School District Governing Board.

Don Tatzin

Orinda City Council

London for Orinda City Council
Dear Editor:
Dr. Bruce London, a candidate for the Orinda City Council, merits enthusiastic voter support because of his concern for Orinda’s future.
“What keeps me up at night is the threat of loss of local control,” Dr. London told the Lamorinda Weekly (Sept. 21, 2016). He added, “Municipalities are under constant assault from Sacramento and the increasing power of regional agencies.”
From 2004 to the present time, Orinda has experienced a lost decade. Unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats have been telling Orinda, a city that is fully developed, that hundreds of hew homes have to be built within the city’s borders. Two regional governmental agencies, the Association of Bay Area Governments and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, voted, in July 2013 to impose high-density, high-rise construction on Orinda and nearby communities. The directors of ABAG and MTC are not directly elected by voters.
Orinda faces the loss of its semi-rural, village-like charm if real estate interests and their cronies continue to push for more development in Orinda. If these special interests have their way, Orinda’s excellent schools will face overcrowding. Parking and traffic, already intolerable in Orinda, will become worse.
Dr. London, a 32-year resident of Orinda, deserves praise for his courage to oppose the special interests that wish to turn Orinda into a version of Tokyo or New York City. He also supports a refreshed look for the city’s downtown.
Time is running out for Orinda’s ability to remain a pleasant place to live. By electing Dr. London to the city council, Orinda’s voters will be selecting a candidate who will do what is necessary to preserve Orinda’s cherished environment.

Richard S. Colman

Smith for MOFD; Gee and Miller for Orinda
Dear Editor,
Orinda is very fortunate to have three highly qualified candidates for the MOFD board and for Orinda City Council on the ballot this fall.
Victoria Smith (MOFD board), Darlene Gee and Inga Miller (Orinda City Council) are all very experienced, with years in leadership roles in Orinda government and civic activities. All are open-minded, dedicated to the ongoing enhancement of Orinda, and emphasize fiscal soundness.
Victoria Smith has been on city council for 12 years, and served as mayor three times. These 12 years were highly productive. Every city budget in that time was balanced while strong reserve balances were built up to protect Orinda from the kind of disaster that recently befall Moraga. Several hundred more housing units, from low to high end, were completed. Finally, after 35 years, Orinda has a roads repair program well on its way to completion.
Darlene Gee, also a current city council member, is a rare combination: both a civil engineer and a Berkeley MBA. Gee has served for decades on such vital boards as the Orinda infrastructure committee and on the Acalanes bond oversight committee. She chaired the successful 2012 campaign for roads funding, and held many other positions in local schools and charitable organizations. Gee was and remains a driving force behind the design, financing and implementation of Orinda’s sorely needed roads repair program. She is dedicated to finishing this program and to a positive action plan for revitalizing our downtown.
Inga Miller is a third generation Orindan, and an attorney specializing in real estate with a practice here in Orinda. She attended Orinda schools from nursery school through 12th grade. Miller was a local newspaper reporter for nine years, covering Orinda. She was an Orinda Parks Commissioner and is on the board of Las Trampas School. Her deep understanding of Orinda is without parallel.
Please join me in voting for these dedicated, experienced and talented women: Victoria Smith (MOFD board), Darlene Gee and Inga Miller (Orinda City Council). Orinda needs them for continued progress with our roads, our drab downtown and fiscal soundness!

Carol Penskar

Orinda City Council ... continued

Vote Gee, Miller, Hoxie, Weiner and Smith
Dear Editor,
Orinda is fortunate to have several very capable and great candidates for local offices that will continue the tradition of excellence in our community. I wholeheartedly endorse Darlene Gee and Inga Miller for City Council; Cara Hoxie and Hillary Weiner for OUSD; and Victoria Smith for MOFD.

Sue Severson

WUDO Endorses Gee and Miller
Dear Editor,
Consensus at the Sept. 6 Orinda City Council meeting was that something needs to be done about the state of Orinda’s downtown. Both the written correspondence sent to the city council and the speakers in the room were overwhelmingly in favor of downtown revitalization being a key priority moving forward. Orindans don’t want talk, they want a real actionable plan.
A promising presentation from our new planning director Drummond Buckley showed that he is established in his new role, and that he and his staff are ready to lead the effort.
With this in mind, What’s Up Downtown Orinda (WUDO) is officially endorsing two candidates for the open city council seats who have confirmed that the downtown issue will be a high priority should they win: Darlene Gee and Inga Miller. Through questionnaires and conversations with WUDO, both candidates have made it clear that they will work to see Orinda’s downtown reach its full potential and become a town that is vibrant, charming and a place of pride.
Appointed to the city council in July 2015 to fill Steve Glazer’s vacant seat, Gee will continue the current momentum in a “results-oriented way and with a fairly aggressive schedule” as she has stated. Miller represents the next generation of Orinda and will bring a fresh perspective and open mind to the position, and can use her legal expertise to help us, as she says, “chart a course for the future.”
WUDO asks that Orindans who would like to see thoughtful progress Downtown cast their votes for these two worthy candidates on Nov. 8 The alternative is to let fear of change keep our downtown stuck in the past.

Laura McDowell, Ali Drasin, Laura Pavlovich, Emily Stoddard, Trudi Loscotoff, Darien Destino and Kirsten Larsen
WUDO Steering Committee

The Real Differentiator in Orinda
Dear Editor,
There are four candidates for the two contested seats on the Orinda City Council. What are the real differentiators? Who matches your values?
All candidates want to see the road and storm drain rehabilitation completed expeditiously and frugally. All candidates would like to see a refreshed commercial downtown. All candidates appreciate the ardor and energy of the Friends of Orinda Creeks. All candidates support financial responsibility, excellent schools and airtight public safety. Don’t be fooled. These are not significant points of differentiation.
But this is. Which candidates are publicly committed to maximizing the Orinda experience for its existing citizens? In contrast, which candidates advocate a high density, downtown residential component for hypothetical future residents as part of their “vision” for Orinda? Who would waive the 35 feet maximum downtown building height, and/or waive the maximum downtown building density of 10 units per acre? Who would allow new downtown development to provide fewer on-site parking spaces?
Who seems oblivious to the potential impact of downtown residential development on school class size, increased traffic, public safety, and an exacerbated downtown parking squeeze? Who is unwilling to poke at Orinda’s unbalanced funding of the Moraga-Orinda Fire Department?
Voters who don’t hear a particular candidate’s position on such matters, should flat-out ask, and keep asking, until they get a definitive answer.
Dr. Bruce London and education administrator, Linda Delehunt, the only two candidates without conflict-of-interest ties to the real estate and development special interests, are also the only two who seem to understand whom they would serve and where to draw the line. Existing Orinda voters don’t have to guess exactly where they stand on such matters. There is indeed a clear choice in this election.

Owen Murphy

Inga Miller for City Council
Dear Editor,
I strongly urge voters to elect Inga Miller to the Orinda City Council.
My wife and I are 30-year residents of our village and are concerned with getting young people into city government to address the bewildering cast of problems that must be addressed to keep Orinda the unique and delightful place it is. Inga is a third generation Orindan who went to Orinda schools and now practices law here.
Inga is exceptionally intelligent and her service on the Orinda Parks and Recreation Commission has shown a devotion to Orinda and a marked ability to work in a cooperative setting and solve knotty municipal problems. Most importantly, she has the ability to listen and consider problems, an ability rare in anyone, but particularly in one so young. Inga has an excellent grasp of land use processing and procedures from her time as a journalist, reporting on municipal events. She is even handed and has no dogma or predetermined approach to land use issues or any other issues that may come before her.
National politics are so strident and divisive that it is refreshing to find a young person with a collegial, cooperative approach to problem solving. My wife and I have known Inga since she was a baby and have watched her grow and mature into an intelligent, extremely impressive young woman. If you have a chance to talk with her, I’m sure you will agree that she is an extraordinary candidate for the Orinda City Council. She is a problem-solver who looks for the things that unite us, not those that divide us. Inga’s deep affection for Orinda and her willingness to take up the difficult task of city leadership presents us with the rare and exciting opportunity to vote for her and enhance the council with a tireless advocate and an exceptional leader. We urge all of you to vote for Inga for Orinda.

Wilson F. Wendt

Leadership Needed for Thriving Downtown
Dear Editor,
Like a lot of young families in Orinda, my wife and I moved from San Francisco seeking a tight-knit community with great public schools and beautiful open spaces. We haven’t been disappointed – Orinda is an amazing town in so many ways. But looking back, I’m reminded that we looked past its tired downtown and pot-hole riddled roads, believing it to be just a matter of time before common sense would prevail and a thriving downtown (and retail tax base) would finally take shape.
Having grown up Lafayette and witnessed the gradual improvements to its downtown, with improved markets, dining, streetscapes, and high-quality housing for all ages, surely Orinda would capitalize on its own obvious opportunities — albeit in a way befitting of its own small town charm. However, six years later, it’s clear to me that nothing is going to improve in Downtown Orinda without strong new leadership at city council.
Darlene Gee and Inga Miller represent that opportunity for thoughtful, results-oriented change. Both of these candidates recognize that a thriving downtown which caters to its existing residents does not equate to traffic, congestion and certain doom – it equates to better community. It means frequent encounters with neighbors, a better tax base for roads, parks, and schools. It means a town that we can be even more proud to call home. Darlene and Inga understand that serving on the Orinda City Council requires an ability to listen and respect all of its residents.
For too long, Orinda has listened only to those that choose to look backward for fear of change, all the while ignoring the voices of a large, engaged base of residents and families that represent the future of this town. If you agree, please get out and vote this election for Darlene Gee and Inga Miller – Downtown Orinda will not improve on its own.

Alex Waterbury

Gee, Miller for Orinda
Dear Editor,
Orinda is very fortunate that Darlene Gee and Inga Miller have stepped forward as candidates for the two open seats on the city council this November. Both have the professional backgrounds and experience that will enable them to be significant contributors at this level, especially at a time when the community is about to embark on a process of planning for the future of its downtown.
Darlene is a graduate civil engineer with an MBA degree. She has had a successful 30 year career as an engineering consultant. She heads the San Francisco office of the global engineering firm HNTB Corporation. Inga is a real estate law specialist with her own practice in Orinda. This has given her valuable insight into the process by which commercial real estate is improved and leased. Both women are quite familiar with how to get things done in the city work environment, having served on important Orinda Commissions in the past.
Both Darlene and Inga look forward to the challenge of shaping the process of renewal that downtown Orinda needs. Importantly, each is convinced that Orinda’s small town feel can and should be preserved in whatever is done to improve its commercial districts. If both are elected to the city council, the community would benefit in major ways from the talents of these experienced, capable professionals.
Tom Trowbridge

MOFD Board of Directors

Smith Has Experience for MOFD
Dear Editor,
I am compelled to express my support for Victoria Smith, who is running for Director, Division 5 with the Moraga-Orinda Fire District. Her experience, and success, as a councilmember and mayor of Orinda has positioned her well to continue those achievements with the MOFD.
During my tenure in that same seat, I worked on several challenging issues with Victoria and found her to be well informed or a quick study on the critical issues facing the department. While serving the city of Orinda, Victoria was a valuable contributor and facilitator for the creation of the Lamorinda Emergency Preparedness Program, which helps strengthen our first responder network and leverage existing community resources.
Another important collaboration I’d like to highlight is a thorough and lengthy examination of the so-called funding inequity between Orinda and Moraga relative to the funding of the fire district. Her challenger for the seat has chosen this same issue as a focal point of his campaign. His mistaken focus threatens to waste even more staff time and district funds by revisiting this misleading issue that three independent elected bodies has long ago proven as completely unfounded, and possibly illegal.
The district cannot afford this loss of institutional memory and experience it needs to move ahead and focus on future challenges and pressing needs. Please join me in voting for Victoria and moving the MOFD towards a strong future.

Brook Mancinelli

Smith for Fire District
Dear Editor,
This November, my colleague Victoria Smith will run for election to the Moraga Orinda Fire District Board of Directors. I hope my neighbors in District 5 (North Orinda) will join me in supporting her in this effort.
It has been a pleasure to serve on the city council with Victoria and work together on many of the issues facing our community. Emergency services and preparedness have always been a priority for Victoria and she understands the importance our citizens place on these efforts. It is a natural transition for Victoria to move her dedication to public service to the MOFD Board. Her leadership and focus on fiscal stability will be welcome attributes to the board. Victoria is a consensus builder and her experience balancing our city budget and prioritizing our capital projects will serve her well in this next endeavor.
Victoria’s efforts and dedication to Orinda go far beyond her three terms of service on the council. Victoria has also served on our planning commission, volunteered in scout troops, and served in our school communities. We are fortunate to continue to have her leadership in Orinda.
Please help to make sure Victoria is successful in November.

Dean Orr

Craig Jorgens for the MOFD Board
Dear Editor,
After spending considerable time over the past decade understanding the workings of MOFD, the services it provides to Orinda residents and the money those residents pay for those services, I consider Craig Jorgens to be the superior choice of candidates for the position of MOFD Director representing North Orinda. His experience in managing large organizations and his background in finance and engineering make him the stronger of the two candidates by far. More information can be found at www.VoteJorgens.com.
His opponent, Victoria Smith, is a real estate attorney and would be the third attorney out of five board members if elected. Her experience includes 12 years on the Orinda City Council which she is leaving with a partially repaired road system and an undefined downtown plan, despite at least three citizen groups clamoring for action for several years. She is a weak second choice. More details on how the two candidates compare can be found at www.OrindaTaskForce.org/Craig_Jorgens_Endorsement

Steve Cohn

Orinda School Board

NO on Butler for OUSD
Dear Editor,
A “No” vote on Sarah Butler is a “Yes” vote for our Orinda schools and kids. While a nice person in many ways, Sarah lacks the key qualities that make for an effective leader. Two of the four years I served on the OUSD board coincided with Sarah and I witnessed up close the deficiencies.
Many of those who have worked closely with Sarah and no longer support her candidacy include former and current OUSD board members. Sarah has difficulties making decisions with routine efforts to push votes down the road or abstaining all together. This is compounded by being late (22 times and counting according to official board minutes) and on a few occasions yelling and abruptly leaving meetings.
One of the big decisions that we faced during my time on the board was how to best use the multi-million dollar facilities money that came from the sale of property. I, and all of the other board members, felt a task force to really study all the options, visit the school sites, and meet with parents and staff would yield important recommendations. Sarah voted no on the formation of the task force which, ultimately, helped to prioritize how to best utilize the one-time funds.
I actually endorsed and voted for Sarah when she first ran for election but, after seeing her on the board, I feel it’s important to let other Orinda voters know some of what I now know and to say enough is enough. Sarah has already served on the OUSD board for the past four years and our Orinda schools don’t need another four. Please join me in voting for the very qualified alternatives.

Christopher Severson,
OUSD Board of Trustees 2010-2014

Butler for OUSD Board
Dear Editor,
Elections are hard, especially this one. Luckily, this year I have one easy choice – reelecting Sarah Butler to the Orinda School Board.
I don’t go to as many school meetings as I should; somehow, work, parenting and plain old tiredness get in the way. And yet, when I do go, I often see Sarah Butler there, whether it’s at my Parents Club meeting, or EFO and occasionally, at my School Site Council. I think to myself: she doesn’t have kids in Orinda’s schools anymore, and yet, she is working harder than I am for a job that doesn’t pay a dime.
At the meetings, I see Sarah listening carefully to everyone, and occasionally asking probing questions or explaining school board policy. She is intelligent and empathetic. She genuinely cares about the interests of all the stakeholders of Orinda schools. She is the only candidate to receive the Orinda Education Association’s endorsement; our teachers support her!
Both of Sarah’s children went to Orinda schools and they are now in college. She is free to advocate for every child, including mine When I talk to her, I feel she understands the concerns and worries of someone like me. I have also seen her voice principled dissent with honesty and courage. I trust her to look out for my daughter’s interests and to protect the school district from being blindsided by inadvertent mistakes.
She listens, thinks deeply and works hard. I hope you will join me in voting for Sarah Butler for Orinda School Board.

Amy T. Chen

Teachers Association Supports Butler
Dear Editor,
The Orinda Education Association, an organization representing all of the teachers in the Orinda Union School District, is pleased to announce its endorsement of incumbent, Sarah Butler, for the office of School Board Trustee.
The term, Trustee, is particularly applicable to Ms. Butler, who views positions on the board as a public trust and whose actions demonstrate her awareness of this responsibility. In making its endorsement decision OEA closely examined Ms. Butler’s experience, past record with regard to support of the interests of teachers, and other endorsements received by the candidate. The teachers of Orinda feel confident that Ms. Butler will continue to champion the inclusion of our voices in the community of stakeholders that strives to provide a truly exceptional education for the students of Orinda.

Katherine Palmer-Collins
OEA Vice President

Moraga Town Council

Korpus for Town Council
Dear Editor:
I have known Planning Commissioner Kymberleigh Korpus since she was born. I knew her as a child of energy, impatient to take on the world. I knew her as an Honor Roll and CSF Campolindo student working at Nation’s in Moraga, and passionately playing varsity volleyball from her sophomore year to graduation. I knew her as, dare I say, a formidable opponent when negotiating for privileges and latitude as a teenager. I always knew her to be a strong advocate for herself in her callow youth. And now that she has educated herself, matured and gained experience in her chosen career, I know her as a passionate advocate for whatever she loves.
I remember when Kymberleigh could not wait go to college and get out of “Bor-aga.” I laughed to myself knowing that someday her youth in Moraga would be a grounding and beautiful memory. In 2011 her Moraga memories propelled her home to its golden hills with cows, its quiet streets, its excellent schools and its neighborhood safety. This year Kymberleigh’s love for Moraga has propelled her to serve Moraga, first on the planning commission and now on the town council, to better protect Moraga’s peaceful nature for everyone who loves it. Everything she offers her family and clients she now offers to Moraga residents: her ability to retain, organize, and analyze copious quantities of data, derive a thorough and cohesive understanding of how it all logically fits together, or identify contradictions within; her ability to simplify, explain and teach clearly what she understands; her integrity.
In her careers as attorney/advocate and wife/mother, Kymberleigh long ago learned how to treat everyone with respect, rationality and honesty. I’ve watched her skillful approach in public planning commission discussions regarding the controversial developments near the Moraga Way fire station and Rheem Boulevard. Her arguments persuaded more than one member of the commission. She never stoops to intimidate or browbeat. She works, simply and indefatigably, to convince. I think Kymberleigh is perfect for Moraga. Please join me in voting for her.

Roberta Thomas
(Kymberleigh’s mom)

Wykle Will Preserve Open Space
Dear Editor:
I’m writing to express my strong support for Roger Wykle for Moraga Town Council.
Over the past six years, Wykle has championed the principles of the Moraga Open Space Ordinance (referred to as ‘MOSO’) as a planning commissioner, council member and mayor. We need his voice on the town council to continue.
For example, as a Planning Commissioner, he was the lone vote against the Hetfield Estates subdivision which will require nearly 200,000 cubic yards of grading and landslide repairs to build houses in MOSO open space.
Two years ago, thanks in part to Wykle’s support, the town began revisiting Moraga’s open space development policies. In a few months, the council will decide whether to approve new regulations that will close the loopholes that have allowed damaging hillside and ridgeline developments like Hetfield to be approved, contrary to the General Plan’s many policies discouraging such projects.
Wykle’s support for open space preservation is urgently needed during this process to preserve what remains of Moraga’s scenic open spaces. We need his continued good judgment and thoughtful consideration of all issues that have come before him.
Please vote for Roger Wykle on Nov. 8.

Tim Meltzer

Elect Crossley, Wykle and Frtizky to Town Council
Dear Editor,
I have worked, participated and served in various capacities with all four of the candidates for Moraga Town Council. I strongly endorse Graig Crossley, Roger Wykle and Jeanette Fritzkey for Moraga Town Council.
Craig Crossley’s service to our nation, his students and the Town of Moraga (once Mayor) is without parallel and his record speaks for itself — plus he has great common sense, is moderate in his views, listens well and has unfailing good judgment.
Roger Wykle similarly has a lifetime of service to his nation and has served Moraga well on the Town Council. I usually agree with his positions on matters before the town and when I don’t his reasoning is always sound and he clearly has Moraga’s best interests upfront. His thoughtful approach is needed!
Jeanette Fritzky’s efforts as member and chair of the Moraga Planning and Recreation Commission has been exemplary. Her business experience has already contributed to Moraga’s progress through her efforts with the Chamber of Commerce. Jeanette’s great outlook and ease of working with make her ideal for our town council.
I have worked with Kimberleigh Korpus and do not believe she would be a good candidate for town council.

Tom Marnane

Reelect Roger Wykle
Dear Editor,
I’m writing to ask Moraga voters who value our town’s hillsides, ridgelines and scenic corridors to re-elect Roger Wykle to the Moraga Town Council. Wykle has a proven track record on these issues.
As a Moraga Planning Commissioner, he was a committed defender of the Moraga Open Space Ordinance (MOSO). He was the only commissioner to vote against the Hetfield Estates development (now approved but not yet built in open space land off Sanders Drive), citing the fact that its massive grading in “high risk” land was contrary to MOSO and the General Plan.
When the town council tried in 2012 to sell town-owned open space to developers to generate revenue, commissioner Wykle objected, pointing to the General Plan’s directive to “preserve open space to the maximum extent possible.” His leadership on that issue helped persuade the council not to move forward with the sale.
As a town councilmember, Wykle voted against the new housing project currently under construction on Moraga Road across from Starbucks. He was in the minority, unfortunately. While not an open space development per se, this project’s two-story homes so close to the road have now negatively impacted that scenic corridor and obscured views of Rheem Ridge.
As a councilmember, Wykle has strongly supported the “Hillside Ridgeline Project,” an effort to review and amend Moraga’s open space development regulations. For the past two years, the town has gathered public comment regarding open space development and drafted revised regulations to reflect those comments. Not surprisingly, the feedback has overwhelmingly supported less development and greater protection. The council will soon vote on more restrictive regulations, and we need Wykle’s voice and vote on that issue, as the pressure from developers to water down the new rules will be tremendous.
If you support preservation of Moraga’s scenic beauty, open space, and semi-rural character, please vote for Roger Wykle.

Peter Bennett

Clarifying Korpus’ Points
Dear Editor,
In your last issue, you published a Letter to the Editor penned by Mr. Woehleke, chair of the Moraga Planning Commission. I write to put his disparaging comments about planning commissioner Kymberleigh Korpus’ conduct (in connection with the highly controversial City Ventures project) into perspective, and to explain why I strongly support Kymberleigh’s candidacy for the Moraga Town Council.
Perhaps Mr. Woehleke has forgotten why Moraga residents created the Planning Commission in the first place. The town asserts Planning Commissioners “are responsible for reviewing, evaluating and deciding land use applications in accordance with the Town’s policies and regulations.” Isn’t that exactly what Kymberleigh was doing (rather than meekly adopting the unsupported opinions of others for political expediency)?
Kymberleigh is a practicing attorney herself, and she invested a lot of time to research a complex situation and reduce her analyses to writing so others could benefit from her work. Even Mayor Metcalf acknowledged the accuracy of her core point (that the town was not following the review process set forth in the Municipal Code) when he stated at the Aug. 24 town council meeting that the town had “corrupted its own processes.” The CV project was opposed by the Fire Department, and it created such conflict within the community that 1,500 residents signed a referendum to challenge the project by ballot. Mr. Woehleke mentioned none of this.
As most people who have listened to her speak on the subject (or read her open letters) know, Kymberleigh has always discussed her concerns about the CV project in a thoughtful, logical and respectful manner − despite commissioners Woehleke’s and Marnane’s repeated efforts to shut her down. Her arguments persuaded two other commissioners, and Mr. Woehleke’s motion to approve the CV project failed. It makes one seriously question whether his letter was objectively written with pure motives, does it not?
I personally think the Planning Commission should be more than a rubber stamp for the town council, and I say “Bravo!” to Kymberleigh. She is a breath of fresh air, and we need more people in government like her.

Stephen J. Huxley

print story

Before you print this article, please remember that it will remain in our archive for you to visit anytime.
download pdf
(use the pdf document for best printing results!)
Send your comment to:
Reach the reporter at:

This article was published on Page A12 / A13 / A14:

Quick Links for LamorindaWeekly.com
send artwork to:
Classified ads
Lamorinda Service Directory
About us and How to Contact us
Letter to the Editor
Send stories or ideas to:
Send sports stories and photos to:
Subscribe to receive a delivered or mailed copy
Subscribe to receive storylinks by email
Our Homes

Copyright Lamorinda Weekly, Moraga CA