What are the priorities you would like to see the City Council adopt for 2022?
164 registered priorities
Ardan Michael Blum in University Park
Bob Wenzlau in Crescent Park
Council Priority Statement by Bob Wenzlau
Water Resources. Water is an integrated resource managed in multiple departments and silos. Water is a resource that has quality and quantity considerations. Water integrates to climate, hazard via flood, health and economy. The Utility Advisory Committee and Storm Water Commission touch water, but neither whole a One Water view. Council should consider charging the Storm Water commission with oversight of One Water.
Municipal Airport. The airport is a tipping point indicator to commitment on sustainability. Now a source of noise, lead, carbon and land use. The airport land is also an asset with land value of likely 1 billion dollars, yet yields no economic return. The airport serves a wealthy clique, not the community. As a source of housing, the airport lands could offer 3,000 mixed use housing, with parklands and commercial potential. Given the demand for housing, it is arrogant that our city does not explore this option. Santa Monica is a community that in the longterm has ceased their airport operations.
Climate and Drawdown. Participating in the SCAP working group, the rate of transition to achieving 80 percent reduction cannot happen via converting toward reduced emissions of carbon alone. There will be a lag in timing. To maintain our commitment, the City should embrace more investment in offsets so that we can achieve our climate goals consistent with the timing we have set.
Transportation by Bike. A shift to transportation by bike over automobile should be prioritize. A litmus test is the lack of safe biking along Embarcadero where sole preference is given to vehicle transport over bike. As bikes continue to be required to take the longer route, this represents the view that bikes are a secondary mode of transport that cannot be accommodated along the most direct routes.
Fate of Paper and Plastics. Our waste paper and plastics continue to be shipped to Southeast Asia. Council has not stopped this practice. Our climate calculations do not measure that these materials are reasonably burned or converted to carbon dioxide, and of course cause incredible social harm. Council should not greenwash this adverse impact, and demand that this practice stop for Palo Alto’s waste stream.
International Engagement. Council should maintain international as well as domestic engagement. I appreciate the unwavering support Council maintains to this engagement.
Patrick Ye in Old Palo Alto
continuing to make progress on Palo Alto's climate goals. we are running out of time, and forward thinking action items (e.g. simplifying the solar panel approval process, a timeline for phasing out city gas) will be critical
Name not shown in Downtown North
Housing cost and affordability is still the number one issue in Palo Alto today. We are losing community, including long term residents, due to high housing costs. This year, 2022, Palo Alto City Council's #1 priority must be the creation of a Housing Element that meets regional requirements and state law. Our own county, through a Civil Grand Jury Report, has also called on our city to step up and put together a feasible housing plan that serves our current and future residents. If we don't act our county and our state will hold us accountable for our lack of action. Worst case the state may sue us or strip away our ability to act for ourselves. As a homeowner and taxpayer I do not want our city council to put us on a path to be sued - they is bad governance and fiscal negligence. That's why it is paramount that in 2022, this city council, current mayor and vice mayor must act responsibly to prioritize, not thwart, a legal, feasible, workable Housing Element and long-term housing plan that meets state law, addresses our county's concerns and serves our community as a whole.
Martin Kuhn in Downtown North
Start executing a grade separation solution in 2022. This project while already a priority for the city needs to be 'shovel ready' as soon as practicable. Decision making appears extremely protracted and slow moving. City Council - Please make tough decisions and let's move forwards!
Stephanie Enos in Barron Park
Do not let another year go by when local law is ignored and gradually becomes irrelevant. This is the shameful history of (not) banning gas leaf blowers that make life in certain neighborhoods feel like a war zone. There is much grand standing about climate change and the environment when at a stroke the Palo Alto city council could ensure that the ban was strictly observed, the law upheld and the air quality vastly improved. Not only would this restore some degree of local control but Palo Alto residents would breathe much more easily! Adjust the original provision in the ban to warn and then fine property owners not the gardeners. Why bother to have a ban if it is not implemented. This is how trust in local government is undermined.
Catherine Crystal Foster in Community Center
I would like to see Palo Alto serve as a model for other cities in the way it includes a wide variety of residents, creates a vibrant and progress-oriented civic life, and executes on bold decisions about climate, housing, and transportation. My priorities are:
1) Ensuring that the city includes and sustains a robust variety of housing options (including a meaningful amount of affordable housing, housing for people with disabilities, and higher-density transit-oriented housing). This means taking leadership to ensure that housing other than very expensive single-family homes actually gets built.
2) Promoting climate resilience.
3) Resolving and taking action on the train crossing issue.
4) Passing local campaign finance reform, so that we limit the time candidates and electeds need to spend raising money (rather than talking to voters and addressing our city's issues), avoid undue influence from donors, increase voter trust in the system, and welcome a wider range of candidates to the field.
Mary Jo Levy in Midtown/ Midtown West
I support retaining the 2021 priorities and with emphasis in two add'l areas: restoration of Library & Community Services programs as able to pre-pandemic levels; and vigorous, noticeable efforts to move forward renovation of the dilapidated Cubberly site and the building of a real gym as proposed by the Parks & Rec. Commission.
Stuart Hansen in Community Center
Please aggressively pursue how Palo Alto can REGAIN local control over threats to our SFR zoning life-style (SB-9) we worked a lifetime to obtain.
Sign-on to any petition to overturn SB-9 and aid the process of signature gathering. Thank you so much, Stuart and Carol Hansen
stephen levy in University Park
Housing for all income groups
Reducing existing constraints to housing proposals and approval
Making PA a competitive city
Dear City Councillors,
I would like to draw your attention to an area where there might be some considerable savings.
Since moving into my apartment in downtown, I have seen 3 times in 5 years the city’s street painters re-do the “STOP” marking (painted) on the road. This seems odd. In other places I have lived, the paint used has been far less prone to vanishing.
It might be interesting to investigate what paint is being used!