Letters to the editorIncorporate Alamo or not?
Would Alamo incorporation be advantageous or would disadvantages outweigh the benefits? Alamo is presently administered by the county and although this is not perfect, residents know what to expect. County services are in some aspects superior to those the Town of Alamo could afford, specifically road improvements, maintenance, parks and permit processing. Proponents of incorporation are proceeding to analyze numerous components, centering on preliminary estimates for revenues and expenditures as formulated by the firm of Economic and Planning Systems Inc.
Concerns arise with the planned space of 3,000-4,000 square feet for a town hall and speculation that a town manager with a small staff could administer town affairs. A realistic administration would consist of a receptionist with lobby space; town manager with assistant; town attorney with an assistant; accounting personnel and financial officer; town engineer; building department; planning department; public works manager; building and public works inspectors; purchasing agent; parks and recreation; town council and planning commission; records storage; and conference room. Also needed would be maintenance facilities with offices and storage yard, and facilities for meetings. At this time, Danville's largest expense is its Police Department with an annual cost of $6 million per year. In Alamo, we have the Sheriff's Department performing an excellent job.
Concerned residents of Alamo are forming an ad hoc committee to study and analyze the effects of incorporation. Its intent is to participate in a positive manner, and it remains to be seen if incorporation will or will not be approved by residents. Alamo is a small community and revenue from large businesses or large corporations are non-existent. If incorporation should succeed, residents will be assessed for more revenue to live up to standards of incorporation. And let's not forget that with incorporation comes more rules and regulations, ordinances and resolutions.
Tony Carnemolla and John Goerl, Alamo
Meetings of interest
On Tuesday, July 24, events occurred at two local meetings of general interest to Danville residents. During the day, the last item of the Open Session of the County Board of Supervisors meeting authorized a General Plan Amendment Study (GPA) for a 770-acre development outside the urban limit line, along a hazardous bending section of Camino Tassajara on either side of Finley Road, known for drivers proceeding at speeds greatly above the legal limits. The 4-1 vote (Supervisor Susan Bonilla demurred) was meaningless, as state law requires a GPA study be conducted if the developer requests one.
In a related item prior to the GPA, the supervisors, at the urging of Alamo and Diablo residents, agreed not to disband, for now, the San Ramon Valley Regional Planning Commission. I believe regional planning commissions, which are more knowledgeable of local wishes, should be established all over our county, and the County Planning Commission abolished. Our District 3 Supervisor, Mary Piepho, a resident of Discovery Bay, although somewhat fiscally conservative, has little knowledge of San Ramon Valley issues and voted for the GPA and has tried to abolish the San Ramon Valley Planning Commission.
Tuesday evening, the Danville Planning Commission voted unanimously to refer the Beth Chaim Congregation's plans to place three temporary modular buildings to the Design Review Board at some indefinite future date. The commission didn't understand the modular buildings were needed to teach Hebrew to grades 4-7 in evenings before Jewish high holy days in September.
Ralph Hoffmann, Danville