Amid backlash, city to reconsider decision on Comp Plan

Palo Alto Weekly – by Gennady Sheyner / March 17, 2017

Citizens committee blasts City Council’s vote to remove programs from land-use guide

Palo Alto officials will revisit on Monday their controversial January decision to strip all programs from the city’s guiding land-use document, the Comprehensive Plan — a move that some characterized as a “formatting” change and others decried as a betrayal of public trust.

A different view of the Comp Plan process

The process has stretched out interminably and at a cost far in excess of what anybody could have imagined in 2008,’ former councilman says.

The Weekly’s Feb. 2 editorial (“A reckless majority“) and the sibling guest opinion by Councilman Tom DuBois (“When democracy is hijacked“) take serious issue with the Comprehensive Plan decisions of the City Council majority in response to the recommendations of the Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC).

Read on…

City Council makes wise decisions on land use

Recent actions ‘strengthen local participation and democracy’

Last week the Palo Alto City Council reviewed a series of policy and program choices sent to them by the Citizen’s Advisory Committee (CAC) and staff. A Weekly editorial spoke of a “reckless majority.” Councilman Tom DuBois went further in an op-ed using words like “democracy is hijacked” and “massacred our Comprehensive Plan” and referred to his council colleagues as “wolves in sheep’s clothing.”

A Reckless Majority

In stunning surprise, new council majority upends planning process

The five members who make up the new, more development-friendly majority on the Palo Alto City Council blatantly stuck it to their four colleagues and the community Monday night with what appeared to be a carefully orchestrated take-over of the critical land-use portion of the new Comprehensive Plan.

Palo Alto council members spar over land-use vision

A series of close votes on Comprehensive Plan highlights divisions on council

Faced with growing concerns about too much traffic and not enough housing, Palo Alto officials agreed on Monday to retain their annual limit on office growth and to explore new sites for residential development — including Stanford Research Park.

Yet in a radical departure from their prior discussions on the Comprehensive Plan, the City Council voted 5-4 to exclude from the land-use document every single program that has been proposed for achieving these goals.