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Derry closed door negotiations

Original post made by Elizabeth Lasensky on Dec 4, 2006

If the closed-door negotiations between Morris Brown (the Derry referendum "owner") and the O'Brien Group produce a compromise settlement, does that settlement get approved or denied by the City Council? What happens if that compromise isn't acceptable to the Council or the referendum signers? What action can be taken?

Comments (2)

Posted by morris brown, a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Dec 4, 2006 at 11:32 pm

Elizabeth and others:

Let me try and explain the process. Aside from the legal challenge to the validity of the referendum petitions, the City council at this stage would have 2 options.

1. Rescind the zoning ordinances, thereby effectively killing the Derry project.

a. in this case, the developer could not bring back a similar project for one year.

2. Place the petitions on a ballot for a full vote of the public.
a. in this case if the voters approve the petitions, the ordinances are rescinded – a similar project cannot be brought back for at least one year.

b. If the voters do not approve the petitions, then the developer will be able to proceed with his project as approved originally by council.

What negotiations at this stage provide is a sort of different option. If the developer and the petitions proponents (Menlo Park Tomorrow) can agree on a revised project such that objections to the project by the proponents are satisfied, then what would follow is:

1. The City rescinding the zoning ordinances that were previously passed.
2. The City would pass new zoning ordinances (most likely General Plan amendment as well), allowing a revised project to be approved.

These 2 steps would be fully in the public eye, having hearings at both the planning commission and city council level. Any citizen can voice objection or approvals to such a revised plan.

Only the City council has any real power to approve or reject the project.

Let me add that the petition proponents have a negotiating team, and this is not being done at all me alone.

I hope this has clarified the situation.

morris brown
contact person
Menlo Park Tomorrow (petition sponsor)

Posted by Inquiring Mind, a resident of Hillview Middle School
on Dec 6, 2006 at 12:52 am

Morris: Under scenario 2, if the developer and the "petition proponents" agree on a revised plan, and the council rescinds the ordinances, would any council action on the revised plan have to wait a year from the date of its rescission of the ordinances?

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