Proposed sabbatical for College Chancellor Helen Benjamin raises questions

chancellor helen benjamin DVC

At its July 23, 2014 meeting the Contra Costa Community College District Board will consider a two-month, paid sabbatical leave request from District Chancellor Helen Benjamin.  On the same agenda Benjamin recommends hire of an interim replacement, former Contra Costa College President McKinley Williams, at a District cost of over $53,000 for two months’ work.  Williams […]

Like a zombie, County sales tax is dead…for now


The good news:  County Supervisors have decided against placing a countywide sales tax on the November 2014 ballot, due to lack of public support. (See: Powerpoint_Presentation_Poll_on_Sales_Tax (1) ) The bad news:  Supervisors continue to seek state legislation to allow Contra Costa to adopt a countywide half-cent sales tax in excess of the state maximum tax rate. The takeaway:  Will […]

Pleasant Hill OKs unpopular hotel development project


Despite no public support, strong resistance from neighborhood residents, and reservations from its Architectural Review and Planning Commissioners, the Pleasant Hill City Council has approved a plan to allow a massive hotel development project adjacent to a residential neighborhood on Ellinwood Way, on the 2.4-acre site of the former Chevy’s restaurant. At its June 16, […]

Hilton Homewood Suites Proposal Revives Growth Worries in Pleasant Hill

homewood hilton pleasant hilljpg

Today the spectre of another voter growth limitation initiative looms over Pleasant Hill. Now more than ever, residents cherish the low-rise suburban look and feel of Pleasant Hill because it’s more liveable and desirable than more urbanized neighboring cities. Public officials who overlook this fact do so at their own peril.

Pleasant Hill amends zoning rules; upholds gun sales restrictions despite legal challenge

pleasant hill city council gun store zoning

On Monday, June 9th the Pleasant Hill City Council introduced zoning ordinance amendments to “sync up” with its law adopted last year that regulates firearms and ammunition sales. As expected, introduction of the zoning changes was approved on a 3-2 vote that mirrored last year’s adoption of the new gun law (Councilmembers Carlson and Weir opposed; Durant, Flaherty […]

Pleasant Hill Commission considers gun store zoning rules after law is passed!

pleasant hill city council gun store zoning

A special Pleasant Hill Planning Commission meeting on April 1 will consider gun store zoning rules after the law has been already passed by City Council. What’s the point? Is it just for show? This meeting writes another sorry  chapter in the city’s years-long battle to regulate its firearms and ammunition retailers.  After three years of […]

Community College District Seeks Expansion via $450 million Bond

community college bond measure 2014

On Wednesday, February 26th, the Contra Costa Community College District Board of Directors will consider placing a $450 million bond measure before voters on the June 3, 2014 election ballot (see agenda item 57-D on page 174 here).  For more than a year the District has explored ways to finance the expansion and modernization of its […]

Pleasant Hill City Clerk Kimberly Lehmkuhl fails legal duties


Pleasant Hill residents owe a debt of gratitude to Councilmember David Durant for taking the initiative to address a longstanding performance problem with the city’s elected City Clerk, Kimberly Lehmkuhl. For over a year the Council, staff and public have been unable to reference or track city legislative history because Kimberly Lehmkuhl has failed to produce […]