Good Turnout For Incorporation Debate Tuesday Night

Would the control that comes with cityhood be worth the expense of forming a local government?


About 100 people attended a debate at the Main Library Tuesday night to hear pro and con arguments about incorporating Castro Valley into a town or city.

Sal Tedesco and Michael Kusiak made the arguments in favor. Mitch Green and David Duncan spoke in opposition.

Castro Valley has had many flirtations with incorporation. 70 percent of voters cast ballots against the last such attempt in 2002.

Tedesco said Castro Valley should control its own destiny. Now decision are made in Oakland by the Board of Supervisors.

“Counties move slowly and we are not a priority in Alameda County,” Tedesco said.

Kusiak said becoming a municipality would allow Castro Valley to run its own police force.

“What I think is important is to have a government in our own community down on Castro Valley Boulevard,” he said.

Green was adamant in his opposition to city-hood.

“How is it going to benefit me on a daily basis?” he asked.

Duncan said running a city government would require new revenues. Castro Valley might feel compelled to bring in big box stores to increase the sales tax base, changing the character of the community.

Tedesco said communities generally incorporate in response to some external shock, like the threat of an unwanted annexation. Castro Valley has no such threat and that makes it difficult to overcome the inertia needed to change.

One potential discontent did arise during the question period. Panelists were asked: “How do we control crime?”

Green didn't believe there was a problem. He asked the audience: “Is there more crime than there was five years ago?” 

There was a shout of “Yes.” Green asked for a show of hands. There was a division in the room; some thought things were worse, others not.

The assembly broke up after a little more than an hour. It’s not clear that any minds were changed or that there was enough oomph to push incorporation. But Tuesday night’s turnout suggested that cityhood still excites curiosity – and alarm – in Castro Valley.

CrunchTime November 21, 2012 at 07:33 PM
The only advantage that was offered, if that is one, to incorporate is the hiring of a police force. Good grief. We have a very good sheriff's department and a CHP office is right here in CV. What I hear is higher taxes and more bureaucracy. No thanks!
Mark Murphy November 21, 2012 at 09:14 PM
The question about crime wasn't phrased properly. There may be more crime now than there was five years ago but would there be less crime if we incorporated? I don't see that our neighboring cities have less problems with crime than we do. San Leandro and Hayward are incorporated cities that we border. Does anyone feel safer in either of those cities than in Castro Valley? I sure don't. If someone could demonstrate that becoming a city would bring improvements, I'd be on board. I'm not seeing that. I see the usual political insiders and well connected people seeking power and self-enrichment. I like Castro Valley as a place with little to attract people from out of town. I don't see incorporation as something that would preserve what we have. Just look at what happened to Dublin after it incorporated about thirty years ago. It used to be a nice small town. Now it's a big sprawl with a hideous megamall striving to haul in retail dollars from out-of-towners. No thank you.
Jane Dough November 21, 2012 at 10:13 PM
I agree, no more redundancy and bureaucracy. We do have more crime, but the police do not focus on the crime we have. Like robbery. They make a report so you can turn it into the insurance and that's about it. Many stories have been hit. Nothing but a report. Bodis, True Value, I forget the rest. Report, report, report. There are plenty of CHP and Sheriff's, they are trained and experienced. No need to add more. Just have them focus on the problems.
Jane Dough November 21, 2012 at 10:16 PM
Furthermore the Blvd's no U-Turns and no left, rights what ever is rediclious. That was put their back when I was in High School because of cruising. I think those days are over.
Jane Dough November 21, 2012 at 10:22 PM
And wile what ever government we have sits on butt, potential businesses are suffering and your wasting jobs. I'm SICK of hearing how your holding out on decent businesses Cabernet licenses. Krayons, Palomeris, blah, blah, blah. It's like you people don't want any business in CV. CV is a communist city against people that go out after 5pm. Knock it off. We want bands and nightlife here. It's sicking what your doing to businesses. If it does become a City... I'm running for Mayor! Vote for Jane Dough.


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