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Petaluma Planning Commission gets more pro-development

For the second time in four years, the Petaluma Planning Commission has undergone a wholesale makeover, this time at the hands of the business friendly City Council majority.

Petaluma proceeds with EIR for proposed westside subdivision

The Petaluma City Council, despite some reservations, has directed its staff to forge ahead with a draft environmental impact report that analyzes the city’s largest housing subdivision in almost a decade. During a 4½-hour hearing for the Davidon Homes project on hilly land on the western outskirts of town, the council Monday said it wanted more information in the final document on water drainage, potential landslides, noise, wildlife protection, traffic and preservation plans for a historic barn on the former Scott Ranch property.

Petaluma City Council vows to replenish reserve fund

Petaluma City Council members on Monday agreed to put the city on a potentially long and painful — but ultimately more secure — financial track.

Petaluma City Council OKs tough smoking ban

The Petaluma City Council unanimously voted Monday to broaden citywide restrictions on smoking to include private living spaces, medical marijuana and electronic cigarettes.

Petaluma’s business-backed candidates claim victory

Petaluma voters sent a clear message Tuesday as three business-backed candidates appear to have won City Council seats over three others supported by progressive interests. Also, Measure X, a $52 annual parcel tax to fund a variety of parks and recreation improvements, was losing with 61.1 percent of the vote. The 15-year tax needed a two-thirds majority to pass.

Growth on back burner in Petaluma council race

In the past several Petaluma City Council elections, candidates have been defined by their attitudes toward growth: Skeptical or welcoming, business-oriented or slow-growth, pro-development or pro-environment.
But with the approval of two large shopping centers now in the city’s rear-view mirror, the six candidates seeking election in November are working to differentiate themselves by issues other than how accommodating they are to development.
Managing the city’s precarious budget, fixing potholes and street lights, attracting jobs and revenues, maintaining the City Hall workforce and pensions, and getting along with each other are all priorities cited by the candidates.

Petaluma council candidates draw varied donors

First-time Petaluma City Council candidate Alicia Kae Herries raised the most in campaign contributions through Sept. 30 and reported the most cash on hand heading into the final weeks before Election Day. Campaign finance reports released Tuesday show Herries and another first-timer, Kathy Miller, are attracting election contributions equal to or greater than seasoned candidates.

Petaluma City Council candidates support parcel tax, oppose asphalt plant

Six candidates seeking three Petaluma City Council seats on the Nov. 6 ballot continued to try to differentiate themselves Thursday during a wide-ranging forum at City Hall.
Incumbents Tiffany Renee, Mike Healy and Gabe Kearney are seeking to retain their seats. Kathy Miller, Jason Davies and Alicia Kae Herries are challenging. Renee is seeking a second term, Healy a fourth and Kearney is asking voters to continue his tenure on the council. Kearney was appointed to fill a council vacancy in 2011.
Questions ranged from whether the candidates supported a parks parcel tax on the ballot and continuing to fight the Dutra asphalt plan south of town — which all candidates did — to several queries about city economics and how to pay for services reduced by recent budget cuts.

Demos clash before endorsing for Petaluma council

The Sonoma County Democratic Party has endorsed the three most liberal of six Democrats running for Petaluma City Council in November, overruling the recommendations of a committee that interviewed all six candidates.
Democratic activists involved in the process characterize the change as an effort by the more progressive members of the party to assert their influence. They say the switch came after intense internal disagreement during the selection process.
Local elected offices in California are technically nonpartisan, although party politics can be influential.

Petaluma candidates disagree on shopping centers, Rainier Avenue

The six candidates seeking three Petaluma City Council seats on the November ballot agreed on much in their first side-by-side appearance Wednesday night, but showed stark differences on the controversial issue of development. The forum was the first of at least three the candidates will engage in before an election that could tilt the balance of power on the council again. about 150 people attended the event at the Sheraton Petaluma.

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