About

The purpose of this blog is to discuss issues that affect the City of Oakley and Eastern Contra Costa County. I will also take the time to make numerous announcements as a way of ensuring that people are aware of what’s happening in our community. I encourage everyone to participate. Comments are appreciated and needed. If there are issues that I have not presented feel free to offer them. You can reach me at kevin@romick.net.

17 Responses to About

  1. Brandi says:

    A bit surrpised it seems to simple and yet useful.

  2. Kevin says:

    eBART will run on diesel trains. That’s the reason for the transfer point at the Bay Point Station. Earlier this year Oakley and Antioch passed resolutions encouraging the development and implementation of a local hire policy with the following recommendations:
    1. 25% of work hours to be performed by eastern Contra Costa County residents;
    2. 50% of apprenticeship hours be performed by east County residents;
    3. Community oversight in implementing the local hire policy.
    The following links are to posts that I have added regarding eBART.
    https://romickinoakley.wordpress.com/2010/05/21/ebart-update-may-2010/
    https://romickinoakley.wordpress.com/2009/06/04/ebart-diesel-multiple-unit-dmu/
    https://romickinoakley.wordpress.com/2009/05/26/ebart-background/

  3. stan james says:

    In conclusion, the eBART is just an extension of the core system with the same rail gauging? In addition, is it possible to make arrangements whereby local residents get preferences for working on BART projects in their area?

  4. Kevin says:

    Thats correct. The $479 million, initial 10-miles of the eBART line will travel down the median of Highway 4 from the Bay Point BART station to Hillcrest Avenue in Antioch and include a station at Railroad Avenue in Pittsburg. The estimated completion date of 2015 is obviously contingent on the scheduled widening of Highway 4. A transfer platform, which will link eBart passengers to BART, will be constructed at the eastern end of the existing Pittsburg/Bay Point BART Station platform.

  5. Stan James says:

    Mr. Rommick
    In regard to the E-BART project, I have heard rumors that Union Pacific will not sell BART the tracks. Have you heard this rumor!

  6. Kevin says:

    LeAnn

    This is what Jason provided early. Plus I have a post in the blog about Sierra-crete. Just search on Sierra-Crete

    Kevin

    Quail Valley (and that whole neighborhood) is a private street that is maintained by the homeowner’s association. We don’t have any involvement with that one. Meadows and the streets coming off it are a different story. They are public and City maintained. The issue is that according to the records we were given when we incorporated the streets in the Meadows neighborhood are underlain with Sierracrete. I’m guessing you have heard of that product? It was an alternative road material that came from DuPont that ended up not performing as advertised. There were health concerns surrounding the product as well, but those were basically dispelled in later studies.

    The significance of the presence of Sierracrete is that there were lawsuits and legal issues that played out over time. I’ll spare you the details, and just summarize that finally last year Oakley determined a course of action for our Sierracrete streets. We are in the middle of a study that should give us a strategy on how to deal with the roughly 10 miles of Sierracrete streets in town. We believe that we can’t just treat the Sierracrete streets like we do all the other streets in Oakley, and that we’ll need to use alternative maintenance practices.

    The preliminary results indicate that Sierracrete is in the newer part of the Meadows neighborhood. The older area below Meadow Creek Court is traditional pavement. The survey also agrees with your assessment that the pavement condition is relatively poor. The next step in the process is to look what pavement treatments will be effective and the relative costs. By the end of the summer we’ll have a good idea of the overall Sierracrete issue, and then we’ll put together some budget strategies on how to start implementing a maintenance program.

    Sorry, I wish it was a more simple answer. I think if Sierracrete weren’t present we would have been in the neighborhood years ago. The Council very wisely and very prudently invests in pavement maintenance. Our streets are the biggest asset in our infrastructure. We’ve probably averaged over a half a million dollars of pavement maintenance each year for the last 5 years. That isn’t necessarily common for a city our size.

    Please do check in on a regular basis and I’ll keep you updated. I know we’ll have some work sessions with the Council as part of this process, and I know they’ll want public involvement.

    Call or e-mail if you have any questions or if you’d like more detail. I didn’t want to overwhelm you with any of the technical stuff I have, but I’m more then happy to share if you are interested.

    Thanks. JV
    Jason Vogan, City Engineer

  7. LeAnn says:

    Hi Kevin,

    Can you tell me what the status of repaving the neighborhood roads is? I know they started this some years ago (can’t remember when) and the got through Vintage Parkway and the MeadowWood (near Rose Avenue) neighborhood, too, I think. Look forward to your reply.

  8. Kevin says:

    Brent

    A link to the website is already provided. If you scroll down on the right hand side under “Other Websites”. I’ll play with cut and paste to see if I can duplicate an error.

    Kevin

  9. Brent Gilbert says:

    Kevin I’m attempting to copy/paste either a website or a newsletter to your web site and am having “too old to learn” intelligence. Regardless, The web site “restore the delta.com” had a newsletter today (2/10/09) that touched on what I referred to in a response to “About” with respect to Salyer/Boswell and Gov Pat Brown 30 years ago. Neither the media nor and other web site has a recollection of the transactions that were apparent in my Dad’s generation which began the robbery of California’s water for votes and personal agenda gains. If nothing more it is a great read on what could be coming. Just a heads up and if you can post the web site RESTORE THE DELTA with the newsletter your readers may see what we’re up against for the future of the States water and water rights laws.

    See: barbara@restore the delta.org. and read the 2/10/10 news letter. Quite a bit is environmental but the paragraph regarding Salyer and Boswell reflects the image of my comment to your site.

    And let’s not look for things to be any better if Democrat Jerry Brown goes back to the governor’s office. Last year, Candidate Brown got a total of $50,000 in four separate donations from billionaire agribusiness power couple Stewart and Lynda Resnick. The Resnicks already have the ear of Senator Dianne Feinstein and the influence to have 15 scientists and other experts impaneled to come back with a different answer than the current biological opinions on smelt and salmon in the Delta.

    Brown had agribusiness giants J. G. Boswell Corporation and Salyer Land Company against him 30 years ago in the last peripheral canal battle, because they thought the environmental safeguards were too strong. It looks like he is already maneuvering to be on the same side as agribusiness this time around.

    The Resnicks, are a daughter and son-in-law of Salyer.

    Regards,

    Brent

  10. Kevin says:

    Brent thanks for the comment and reading the blog. I agree with you on the water issue and I’ll try and address the issue as appropriate. With a $20 billion budget deficit and a declining credit rating we certainly don’t need to add to the mess with more bonds as proposed by the Governor. Keep in touch

  11. Brent Gilbert says:

    Kevin – Great site and I commend you. My greatest issue and hope is that Oakley continues to protect our vital resource that we in the Delta have which is SENIOR RIGHTS TO WATER. I have owned and leased about 3,000 acres in the Delta since 1973. I helped defeat the 1st peripheral canal in assisting Sunny McPeak and Dante Nomelini. I have experienced major floods from lack of financial resources, the demise of the water quality provided to Contra Costa due to political gains in the legislature for the So. CA”s (majority) voters, etc. My bigest fear this “go-round” is that the Senior Water Rights will be altered or changed to benefit the majority of voters in So. CA. The political machine will be difficult at best to stop now. The media has sided with the false interpretation of the demise of agriculture if a “canal” (transfer of No. CA water) IS NOT constructed. Regardless, the public needs to understand the billions of $ sent to the Delta in the past 20 years by private landowners and the DWR which has successfully sustained the Delta in the past will cease to exist. We’ve seen and witnessed the broken promises in the past. Even though the Terminator has promised maintenance of the Delta if he succeeds in constructing a canal as was his platform to the Southern CA voters while running for office guaranteeing an increase in water supply to So. Ca. It may not be during this governor’s administration or the next but at some point in time the funding for the private levee owners that sustain the conveyance of the State’s water system (by reclamation taxes to the landowners) will be abandoned and it will be determined as too costly to maintain. See the site “http://www.sacbee.com/1232/rich_media/1444540.html” and look at the flooded island alternatives, especially those that will be abandoned. Over a period of time, the Delta will evolve into a saline inland estuary. As the majority of the delta islands are below sea level, regardless of the cause of subsidence of the rich delta soil, it was the Fed that set up the “Reclamation Act” in the late 1800’s that enabled the development of the delta for agriculture to provide food for a growing population. Also, recall that past Gov George Miller Sr. partnered with Sallier(sp) and Boswell in purchasing land in the Central Valley desert recognizing a profit in converting the desert into a ‘lush” farming area if they were successful in initiating the CVP canal (Central Valley Project). Why would the constituents of CA vote to abandon the 500,000,000 acres in the Delta established for Ag by Fed request in the 1900’s and enable both the Delta and the Central Valley to suffer in order to benefit only So. CA? Less that 30 years from now California will regret giving Southern California a means to bypass the Delta with respect to transporting water around it. In the future, the Delta will be declared financially un-sustainable and all monetary aid will be abandoned. The battle may appear to be about a fish, but it is not. It is about supplying the southern portion of the State with water rights that were previously and still are vested to those that developed lands at the request of the Feds when the “West Was Won”. Thanks to “Restore the Delta” (google the website) the enviros are assisting the Delta farmers in this bout. If any environment should be sacrificed, it should be in the deep useless valleys and canyons (except for bugs) of the Tehachapi’s. If more dams were built in the vast canyons of the Tehachapi’s, then during severe winters when the Delta rivers are “out of control”, the flooding could be alleviated by shipping surplus water South in the winter when the rivers are running fresh and the water shipped could be used for use in So. CA. Central Delta attorney Tom Zuckerman had a great solution for ground water storage that was never considered as a solution by the State. With respect to flushing the silt out of the delta, the enviros should let the delta RD’s dredge the silt and place the material on the levees. It was done in the past and worked. It’s a relatively inexpensive resource for levee maintenance. As I write, the hype funded by the State from professors Mount and Seed is being challenged with respect to the liquefaction of sand in peaty soils, etc. We never hear about that in the State owned media hype ! I’m a witness to the falsehoods. See testimony @DWR.CA.GOV.

    I’ve rambled too long, and have more anger to expose. I thank you Kevin for the Penn and Teller clip. It shows the gullibility of CA voters.

    One more thought – – California’s growth has slowed or diminished due to tax increases and it looks like the future holds the CA citizens to more tax increases. Perhaps we won’t need any of the “alternatives” for water supplies in the near future!!

    Best personal regards,

    Brent Gilbert

  12. Kevin says:

    William

    The “high density” issue is inextricably tied to the City’s General Plan and Zoning regulations. I have posted a number of articles on the General Plan and zoning, these can be easily accessed via the ‘City Info” category. There is a process that is steeped in California law that the City must follow in regards to land use regulations. If, after reading these posts you have additional questions I would be happy to answer them.

  13. William McCullough says:

    Kevin,

    I was referred to your blog by a friend who thought this might be a really good place for Oakley-ites to keep up on local matters, but I am surprised you don’t have any entries for current issues like the battle against ‘high density’ housing development in our city. Perhaps you are not aware of this major issue???

  14. Hi Kevin, Your doing a fine job here. Keep me posted on Oakley. Perhaps I can help you get the word out. Maybe you’d like to join our writers’ club? We meet monthly now in Antioch. Call me if this interests you (925) 325-0934. Frank MacCallister

  15. Kevin says:

    Jerry

    Thank you for your compliments and I’m glad to have you as a reader. I’ve added a link your website. I started because there is such a lack of information about what goes on in our community and I sense that you share the same frustrations. There also seems to be number of misconceptions each community in East County has of the other. We all, especially in far East County, suffer from the same issues, transportation, local jobs, growth and many more. Anything I can do to help let me know

  16. Jerry Fisher says:

    I am amazed at the amount of information you have. It is very enlightening and well presented. I am on a quest to develop a more harmonious relationship between Oakley and Bethel Island, after all we really have a lot issues that relate to the both of us. I have the web page http://www.bethelislandnews.com Which is the only real information center other than the Post Office on what is happening on Bethel Island.

    I would like to link on your site as well I would like to link your site to mine.
    We both could enhance each other.

    Thank You
    Jerry Fisher

  17. halfwaytoconcord says:

    Hi Kevin. Welcome to the discussion. Thanks for the link.

    I have added your site to my local blogs posts section. Whenever you post, the plugin (LinkedLists) will list that post at Halfway To Concord until it scrolls off the top 6 posts. Good luck with you site. Let me know if you you ever need any WP help. bgr

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