Fremont Planning Commission votes against Day Care/Nursery School Project

In the end — which was about 11:30 p.m. — the Planning Commission voted 5-0 not to grant a conditional use permit for the owner to set up a preschool at the corner of Mattos Drive and Fremont Boulevard.

Dominic Dutra said during the meeting that he’d appeal if that was the result, so I’m guessing it’ll go to the council.

It was an interesting battle that went on so long it became tedious.

Working in Centerville has made me realize just what a pain it is to make a left onto Fremont Boulevard and how slow traffic moves southbound on Fremont shortly after 2 p.m. when Centerville Middle School lets out.

But the prospective business owner has bought her building and paid $50k toward getting her permits, and now her project is at risk mainly because she’s providing two few parking spaces.

In the face of all the Glenmoor residents who showed up to oppose the school, I’m surprised that Dutra didn’t trot out some of the school owner’s present day care customers, or some fresh faced young parents. Most of the opponents were a little long in tooth.

Of the five Planning Commissioners able to vote — Dirk Lorenz owns nearby property and David Bonaccorsi represents the Dutras — only one has a child under 10.


A’s to San Jose Column

Mercury News Columnist Mark Purdy writes about the A’s stadium woes today


Here is the pertinent part:

Because here is a piece of the puzzle that no one seems to be considering: If Selig should announce, after perusing the Blue-Ribboners’ information, that Wolff should instead pursue a Fremont ballpark option, Wolff does not have to do it. Baseball can’t force Wolff to build a ballpark anywhere. It can only tell him where he cannot build a ballpark.

This matters. Wolff is not going to go through the Oakland or Fremont circus again. Within the past few months, both cities have offered up “new” sites and plans for the A’s. But the “new” Fremont site is hot air trapped inside a smoky mirror. The proposed land for the site is part of the soon-to-be-defunct NUMMI plant — yet Fremont politicians did not even contact NUMMI officials before making their big announcement. Meanwhile, a Fremont citizens group is angry about the proposal’s reported $65 million cost to build ballpark infrastructure.

Two things:

1) Fremont did talk to NUMMI about the land. Fred Diaz said NUMMI didn’t respond positively or negatively, but city leaders sure do seem confident they can buy it.
2) Fremont still has the potential carrot for the A’s and Cisco and rezoning the land near Pacific Commons for the village part of the ballpark village. That might be the incentive they need to hop back on the headless mechanical bull that is Fremont stadium politics.


At least Fremont isn’t trying to get exhibition baseball

Good story in the New York Times about cities in Florida and Arizona bending over to attract teams for spring training.

I’m watching the Planning Commission online. Not fun.

For the last half hour Dominic Dutra and the prospective owner of a Centerville nursery school have argued that the school wouldn’t burden neighbors.

Now it’s time for Jack Rogers and a whole lot of Glenmoor Gardens residents, many of whom are well passed their child-raising years.

Planning Commissioner Richard King noted that he Rogers and Planning Commission Chairman all belong to the same rotary club. (Niles Rotary, the most powerful one) To which Sharma said that Dominic Dutra has been very close to him for longer than Rogers. 

But he thinks he and Commissioner King can still be unbiased. One would hope so. Continue Reading


Not much traction for Morrison’s One City proposal

I’ve talked to some local pols about Gus Morrison’s proposal to consolidate Fremont, Union City and Newark into a single city.

No surprise that there’s a lot of apprehension.

Politicians are, by and large, the same people who joined too many clubs in high school and organized events nobody really wanted to attend.

I’m guessing most Tri-City area residents don’t really care if there subdivision is off Newark Boulevard, Ardenwood Boulevard or Union City Boulevard.

But if you’re identity is wrapped up in decades worth of Newark Days or Fremont Festival of the Arts or any other civic pride event, city boundaries matter a great deal.

Asking a politician to disband his/her city is like asking a cheerleader to cancel the pep rally.

So here’s what a few local pols had to say. Continue Reading


Preschool battle heads to Planning Commission


This triplex at Mattos Drive and Fremont Boulevard in Centerville is be at the heart of what’s shaping up to be a not horribly boring Planning Commission meeting Thursday. The new owner wants to turn the building into a Montessori preschool with up to 65 students.

The city thinks that’s fine, but some Centerville … oops … Glenmoor Gardens residents say the school will have too many kids and not enough parking. And they already have to deal with pickups and drop-offs at nearby Centerville Middle School and Washington High School.

What makes this slightly interesting is the players on opposing sides. Representing the applicant is former Councilman Dominic Dutra. Representing the Glenmoor Gardens neighbors is Jack Rogers, the former high-ranking Fremont official, who is a part-owner of the Besaro Mobile Home Park and the former campaign chairman for Sue Chan, who Dominic Dutra supported.


Stark and Lockyer like older men, each other

Got this nugget from our super thorough political blog.

Rep. Pete Stark’s wife, Deborah Stark, is supporting State Treasurer Bill Lockyer’s wife, Nadia Lockyer for County Supervisor.

The blog post includes this tidbit:

The news release delves deeper into both women’s professional bona fides, but doesn’t mention that Lockyer, 38, is the wife of state Treasurer Bill Lockyer, 68, or that Stark, 43, is the wife of Rep. Pete Stark, 78.

But the blogger/reporter also notes that both women are accomplished in their own right, and questions whether reporters should draw attention to their powerful and older husbands.


Yee brings in more cash

State Assembly canddiate Garrett Yee announced this morning that he has so far raised a total of $182,449 from about 380 donors for his Assembly campaign against Fremont Councilmember Bob Wieckowski.

Last filing period, which ran from Jan. through June of 09, Yee received a little over $111,000, including a $26,000 loan.

That was more than Wieckowski raised. Still waiting to get Wieckowski’s latest numbers.

I think the filing deadline for reporting July – December 2009 contributions is Jan 31. Contributions are a big deal because party bosses want people in Sacramento who have shown they know how to raise cash.