Archive for the ‘Letters to the Editor’ Category

Writer supports Barr for Supervisor for understanding local farm economy, issues

Thursday, October 13th, 2016


As a Brentwood farmer, I have watched Steve Barr work through many East County issues, and his thoroughness and balance has always impressed me. Steve has always had the ability to see the greater picture, and make decisions which will work most effectively for the community at large. Steve’s decisions have helped East County’s quality of life through his long-time support of the establishment of agriculture conservation easements which will help ensure the future of agriculture in the East County.

Steve has also voiced strong support for value-added agricultural enterprises such as wineries, farmers’ markets, fruit stands and u-picks. These enterprises will help the local farm economy develop their own markets and increase sustainability. Steve’s volunteer work as lead organizer of the Brentwood Cornfest helped cement his relationship between the ag community and the urban city.

Steve’s experience as an independent businessman has given him an understanding and perspective of the greater community’s relationship between business, jobs and government. As Contra Costa County Supervisor, Steve Barr will use his experience and his insightfulness to make decisions which will be best for the entire community now and in the long run.

Mark Dwelley

Partner, Dwelley Famly Farms


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Letter writer announces Antioch School Board endorsements by district staff

Monday, October 10th, 2016


After extensive discussion and review, these three groups have endorsed the following candidates for the Antioch Unified School District board of trustees for the Nov. 8, 2016, election:

Antioch Management Executive Board endorses candidates Mike Burkholder, Diane Gibson-Gray, Gary Hack, and Joy Motts.

Both the Antioch Education Association and the California School Employees Associations executive boards endorse candidates Gibson-Gray, Hack and Motts.

All three employee groups have unanimously endorsed Gibson-Gray, Hack and Motts.

Scott Bergerhouse


Antioch Management Association

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Fellow councilman says Barr best choice for fiscal responsibility in Supervisor’s race

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Dear Editor:

Fiscal responsibility are nice buzzwords for most politicians. Unfortunately, few practice what they preach during election season.  Council Member Steve Barr has proven with his voting record at the City of Brentwood that fiscal responsibility is a belief versus a talking point.

Fiscal sustainability is a primary pillar of being fiscally responsible. Without sustainability the public entity can’t allocate the resources to where they’re needed most, such as public safety and maintaining a great quality of life.  As we slowly came out of the recession Steve was instrumental in adjusting the budget to allow us to hire more police officers that can be sustained during challenged times.

To the community’s detriment, most politicians view public finance through the short-term lens of ‘What can I do during my term?’ or ‘How will I achieve my campaign promises?’  Steve has shown his ability to view finance in the only way to sustain a great quality of life in a community, through long term conservative budgeting such as the 10 year fiscal model which he helps direct as part of the finance sub committee on the Brentwood City Council.

I’ve had the opportunity to work with Steve to help position Brentwood to build a new library, hire more police officers and most important to improve the quality of life in Brentwood for our residents.  I have no doubt his proven record will end in similar results for the residents of East Contra Costa County.


Erick Stonebarger

Council Member

City of Brentwood

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Letter writer gives reasons he opposes Frazier for re-election

Thursday, October 6th, 2016


This year, we are voting to decide the future of our nation and state.  California is headed down the wrong path, with our legislature following under the Liberal direction of Governor Jerry Brown.  California’s 11th Assembly District elected Democrat Jim Frazier in the last several elections.  Frazier’s votes on key bills have devastated our State and our children’s futures.  As a citizen in this district watching Jim Frazier’s vote on bill after bill, I have been deeply troubled and shocked by his actions in the name of our district.  Check out his votes on the following bills and see if you agree with my opinion that he does not represent the values of our district:

*AB 1266:  Jim Frazier voted ‘yes’, in favor of transgender access to whatever bathroom they feel like using that day.  If a boy ‘feels transgender’ that day, ‘he’ is now entitled to shower or change clothes with your daughters in their school gym or locker room.

*AB 1461: Jim Frazier voted ‘yes’ in favor of automatically registering people to vote in their DMV renewal.  The intent of this bill was to deliberately register illegals to vote Democrat, fraudulently subverting CA’s electoral process.

*AB 1732: Jim Frazier voted in favor of ending designated ‘men’s’/’women’s’ bathrooms in California.

*AB 1322: Jim Frazier voted to decriminalize child prostitution, by making it harder to take teen prostitutes out of the web of oppression they face, returning them to the control of their pimps.

*AB 1671: Jim Frazier voted to criminalize undercover journalists, like the ones who revealed the Planned Parenthood ‘profits for baby parts’ ghastly horror brokering scheme.  Message conveyed by Jim Frazier and Jerry Brown: mess with Liberal causes, and they hunt you down and punish you.

*SB 443: Jim Frazier voted against this bill designed to limit asset seizure.  Jim apparently felt you should have to give up your assets to the government, whether you’re found guilty of a crime or not.

*ACA 4: Jim Frazier proposed reducing the % of votes needed to change Proposition 13 from 2/3’s, down to just 55%.  This would allow a Democrat controlled legislature to weaken Prop 13 protections for poor, middle class and elderly, likely resulting in dramatically increased property taxes paid to the State.  Jim Frazier was listed by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayer’s Assn as one of the biggest threats to Prop 13 in CA History.

*AB 1176 Jim Frazier abstained from voting on this bill, which made theft of a firearm ‘Grand Theft’, punishable as a Felony with State Prison time.

Several of Jim Frazier’s other ‘great ideas’:  Jim recently co-authored a bill to raise the gas tax by .17 cents a gallon for regular gas, and .30 cents a gallon for diesel, with unlimited, annual upward readjustments without voter input.  Jim just bumped up his Chief of Staff’s pay $18,000 to a ‘modest’ $120,000 a year (even more than Jim Frazier makes).

Jim Frazier has refused to debate Republican Challenger Dave Miller.  With a record like Jim’s, is it hard to see why?  What has Jim Frazier done to lower taxes or encourage business/job growth in Solano or Contra Costa Counties?  At every turn, Jim Frazier’s votes show he supports raising taxes, crushing liberty, and expanding Big Government at the expense of transparency and accountability to the taxpayers.  Jim Frazier says ‘People Over Politics’.  His voting record shows just the opposite; he’s all about politics over people.

Dave Miller stands for a much smaller, less intrusive State Government; one where personal liberty and small businesses can thrive and California Dreamin’ can once again become a reality.  Dave’s priority is to bring common sense back to Sacramento, in a way that makes California better for generations to come.

The choice is very clear this year.  Join me in supporting Dave Miller for CA’s 11th Assembly District.

Erik Elness


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Miller criticizes Frazier for giving Chief of Staff $18,000 annual raise

Thursday, October 6th, 2016


My State Assembly campaign has discovered another breach of the public’s trust, as it relates to Jim Frazier’s stewardship of the 11th Assembly District. Last month, it was discovered that Mr. Frazier’s Chief of Staff, Jay Day, according to State Assembly publicly compiled State Employee salary records, received a $102,000 per year salary. In 2016, his salary went up to $120,000 per year, surpassing the base salary of his elected supervisor, Mr. Frazier.

Members of Assembly can appropriate Salary dollars any way they see fit, within their staff. Assembly Chief of Staff salary range, anywhere from $68,000 in Bakersfield, to $135,000 for Members of Assembly with leadership positions in the Chamber. A standard cost of living adjustment (COLA) for an employee earning a $102,000 wage would be about 3-4% or in Mr. Day’s case, around $3,500. This $18,000 raise Mr. Day received, that Mr. Frazier approved, is what some people in this district are lucky enough to earn working their fingers to the bone in a year’s time, thanks in large part to regulations placed on small businesses by Democrats.

This salary announcement comes conveniently two weeks after Mr. Frazier proposed the single largest per gallon fuel tax in the history of the Golden State. Mr. Frazier drew the criticism of voters from San Diego to Shasta with his proposed 17 cents per gallon fuel tax increase, which is 30 cents per gallon for diesel and also adds an additional $38 per year DMV Registration Fee. The criticism of his fuel tax has been loudest in AD-11, where voters not only drive literally hundreds of miles a day, to get to work, but also enjoy evening and weekend boating on the various waterways surrounding the San Francisco Bay Estuary.

I can’t answer as to what Jim was thinking when he approved this bump in salary. I can tell you that as your Assemblyman, I will fight to give my per diem back to the State Treasury, as Assemblywoman Baker, has done. I’m told per diems are optional to Members of the Assembly, and as such, I will get on the highways, and come home to my family just like many of you who work in Sacramento do every evening.

As someone who has worked in Government for nearly 30 years, and plans to once again, I will be available to take your call, respond to your emails, invite you to meetings on issues that are important to you, help refer you to the proper government agency to help solve your problems, inform you of my vote in the chamber, using social media almost instantly, hand out my personal cell number to those who ask for it.

Twenty-eight years of government service does that to a person. And I can assure you as I sit here, My Chief of Staff will not make more than I do. As a taxpayer, I’d like to know what I’m getting for my money right now. You should also.

Dave Miller

Candidate for Assembly, 11th District, California


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Letter writer likes Davis column about police, hate crime and America’s real enemy

Wednesday, October 5th, 2016


I wanted to start off with saying that I believe his (Lou Davis’) article in this past Herald about the treatment of police officers was great and to the point. My wife and I think it was very well put, no B.S. and with knowledge of the situation. We feel that this article should be offered out to all local Bay Area newspapers so they to can publish it and get it out to thousands more so they can read it as well. I would love to see it on the internet as well.

I hope that this can happen because we feel this should get out to many more readers.

Thank you,

Mike de Luna



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Former Antioch School Board Member Cowan writes in support of Motts

Wednesday, October 5th, 2016


I am writing to share my enthusiastic support for Joy Motts, candidate for the Antioch School Board. Antioch is so fortunate to have a candidate of her caliber, dedication, and profound knowledge and ability to lead the District in a positive direction. Ms. Motts, as a former School Board member, was instrumental in implementing the hugely successful secondary academies and linked learning. She was present and supported so many of each school’s activities, events, administrative and staff endeavors.

More importantly and because of the present Board’s apparent ineptitude, once elected she will provide the strong and equitable leadership that will restore trust in the Board. Administrative and instructional staff trust her and believe in her.

I urge you to vote for Joy Motts. She is the only hope to establish a positive and effective alliance with all key personnel in the Antioch School District and will lead the District to the success that Antioch children deserve.

Barbara Cowan, Former Antioch School Board Member


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Writer responds to Harper’s comments on 21st Century Policing symposium

Monday, October 3rd, 2016

Dear Editor:

Please read

I would like to acknowledge publicly that an attempt was made to meet with the Mayor face to face and resolve any misinterpretations and, or misgivings regarding the symposium. Mayor Harper, stated: “I won’t be meeting about the ‘opinion’ article. Feel free to write a rebuttal or response to…”  I have respectfully done so in love.

Dear Mayor Wade Harper:

I would like to thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to attend the Building Bridges and Tearing Down Barriers symposium. The symbiotic relationship that you have with local law enforcement is commendable. However, I am sorely disappointed by your overall interpretation of the symposium organizers’ efforts. This organization is to be commended for their due diligence, perseverance, and dedication in an attempt to have positive productive conversations that could ultimately save lives.

Based on your aforementioned letter; you stated some ways in which the symposium could have potentially been more successful. Your recommendations are greatly appreciated. The organization did plan to attend a city council meeting introducing objectives and overarching-goals of the organization.  Unfortunately, the spokesperson for the organization had to attend to an unforeseen matter- so he was unable to attend the council meeting preceding the symposium. In addition, the organization members did meet with several council members individually as you suggested.

According to the content that precedes your letter, stated: “Harper said Antioch Police are reaching out to the community and that ACT has caused great confusion in the community as to whether or not police would participate in the forums.” This statement is really disheartening. The organization’s intentions were to ameliorate the relationship between law enforcement and the community. Most importantly the symposium was a conduit to positive productive proactive conversations that could ultimately save lives.

You are correct. Unfortunately, there were errors on the initial flyers. However, a new amended flyer with the correct information was presented to local law enforcement, city officials (I personally sent one to you), local mediums, and the public at large. In addition, a member of the organization contacted the local law enforcement and apologized for the initial misgivings. For further clarification, police were actually part of the panel; unfortunately, local law enforcement was not part of the panel for this particular symposium. Hopefully, local law enforcement will be able to participate in the future and convey all the impactful events that they are participating in- and hosting within the community.

However, the panel did consist of a retired police officer and a current CHP officer that offered their introspective perspective that provided an intended balance of opinions and experiences. The panel was outstanding. They should be commended for their collective passion, professionalism and integrity. Their time and effort were not taken for granted. The panel consisted of a re-entry coordinator, a licensed registered nurse/case manager; a licensed family therapist/clinical specialist; a lawyer/founder and principal; and the aforementioned officers.

You stated in your letter the following: “I encourage people to have the discussion, host forums, talk about the issues, but I encourage them to not do it as an outsider looking in. As members of the community, do it as an insider and a member of the community.”

Five out of the six panelists are Antioch residential homeowners. Including myself the moderator that would make six out seven. Who determines whether a person is an insider or outsider?

You also stated: “My conclusion is that we should resist the temptation to judge Antioch police based upon on what happens in other states and cities.”

With all due respect, you did not stay for the conclusion of the symposium; so how can you conclude anything objectively?  It is disappointing to hear you convey that some people were “outsiders” and some people were “insiders,” especially when our tax dollars are utilized for a multiplicity of local governmental endeavors.  

Again, I am deeply saddened and disappointed. We look to you for leadership not condemnation. The organization did not attempt to bifurcate, nor oppose local law enforcement. However, I am still prayerful that this will clarify any misinterpretations or misgivings. We will continue to be proactive community members seeking to avoid tragedies. We are willing to symbiotically work with: various organizations, community stakeholders, and local municipalities for the greater good of the community.


Dr. Lawrence A. Rasheed


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