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Park Theater or Political Theater

Original post made by Inside Analyst, Menlo Park: Fair Oaks, on Nov 2, 2007

Menlo Park doesn't need the Park Theater, because poor, poor stifled Ms. Maurano and others are providing all the political theater we need.

The Parks & Recreation Commission, at least two members of which, including the chair, are deep insiders to the out-of-power party, held a "special" meeting, (i.e. at an irregular time), without the benefit of any factual information, namely a staff report.

They formed an opinion on behalf of the public to oppose a deal currently under negotiation that is not final and whose terms were unknown to them, in part because the terms don't yet exist.

Two of the remaining three resolutions are reasonable sounding statements of values. A third, though well-meaning, trips over itself by trying to limit council's ability to consider public vs private service providers.

Had the Parks & Rec Commission waited for a complete deal, or had it simply asked to be consulted once the deal was negotiated, and had it *then* evaluated the actual terms of such a deal in light of the values stated in its resolution, I might be more persuaded into thinking this was something other than a PR ploy.

But since they met, straight-faced, without a single piece of factual information, to form an opinion against a deal whose terms are not yet defined, its pretty hard to take them very seriously.

In fact its down right scary.

And all this political entertainment happens coincidentally after a half-hearted recall effort begins over the same issue.

Hmmmmmmm. Let's see. I guess its just a coincidence that the Chairman of the Parks & Recs commission is the sister in law of the premier grey eminence of the out of power party in Menlo Park, and I guess its just a coincidence that an effort to recall the newly elected Council is happening at the same time as a hastily scheduled, ill-informed Park's and Rec meeting to oppose the deal.

The only thing sillier than the recall is the P&R commissions "resolution." And the only thing sillier than that is Council's in-graceful handling of the Park & Rec "report" during the council meeting.

Because Council shot itself in the foot, everybody is missing Ms. Maurano's transparent political theater.

Personally, I can't imagine that Menlo Park will negotiate a contract that I would be willing to support, but I'm smart enough to look at a deal before I say no.

I dont think disagreeing with a decision-making body is grounds for impeachment, but I dont doubt for a minute that Ms. Maurano's activities were political theater that were directly or indirectly coordinated with those behind the recall.

Comments (3)

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Posted by whoknows
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Nov 2, 2007 at 11:05 pm

Whether or not Ms. Maurano's motive was political or not, she did not deserve to be shut down by Mayor Fergusson with assistance from councilman Robinson. Robinson, has now acknowledged that he blundered in this matter and written an apology which is publicly posted.

The Parks and Rec committee voted unanimously on the 4 motions. This would lead me to believe this was not meant to be a political agenda, but an honest attempt to voice their opposition to the Park Theater. I think that the Mayor's argument that they didn't have staff support and information is really bogus. After all, this issue has had its own special council meeting and has been debated for several months.

We are still awaiting any similar apology from our Mayor. She has virtually no support on the Park Theater issue. I feel certain it will die its own death. I even note she couldn't even get anyone else but a Palo Alto resident to write a letter to support her position in the last Almanac.

Finally, I voted for and fully supported the Mayor and Heyward in their elections. I don't think the Mayor even begins to realize how much support she has lost over this issue. Surely before this is over, either Cline or Robinson will vote no and kill this. At least I sure hope so.


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Posted by tweetty
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Nov 4, 2007 at 7:43 am

A bird friend of mine told me to make sure to view Tuesday's (Nov 6th) meeting. Major announcement to be made on the theater issue.

Wanna take bets?


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Posted by Pat White
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Nov 5, 2007 at 8:26 am

Who are these "no-names" making such accusations against Ms. Maurano? Should not we know our "accusers"? It seems to me that with the change of opinions by Cline &Robinson, Ms Maurano/Park Commission's report has all the more validity! Ferguson keeps shooting herself in the foot!!!!!

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