Writer concerned about Mayoral candidate’s lack of answer to Urban Limit Line question

Dear Editor:

Sometimes a candidate for office stands out simply because he or she is outstanding; other times, deciding who to vote for becomes a process of elimination. And I’ve often found the choice can involve a combination of the above. To learn more about the candidates for Antioch Mayor and City Council this year, I attended the “Conservation & Community Forum” on September 28.

The panel included seven contenders: Sean Wright, Gil Murillo, and Lori Ogorchock for Mayor; and Mary Rocha, Fred Rouse, Lamar Thorpe, and Ken Turnage for City Council. Mary Rocha and Lori Ogorchock are incumbents, and the other five are challengers. In addition to being a current City Council member, Lori is also the Mayor Pro Tem and a realtor by profession.

One of the main issues in Antioch involves development, and relevant to that, the forum moderator posed the following question: “Do you feel the Urban Limit Line should be expanded, stay the same, or be reduced?” [To provide some background, the Urban Limit Line (which has expanded and contracted a few times over the past 16 years following various County and City measures), is essentially a growth boundary to control unfettered development and retain some open space in Contra Costa County.]

I was very interested in finding out how the candidates would respond to this question, and was pleased upon learning that most of them would not support expanding the Urban Limit Line. However, in hearing Lori Ogorchock’s response to the question, my reaction turned to one of shock as she stood in silence not understanding the term Urban Limit Line. She closed by saying “I won’t be able to answer that question.”

How could someone who is (a) a sitting member of the City Council, (b) the Mayor Pro Tem, and (c) a real estate professional be so ill-informed about a topic that specifically involves land use (including real property development), City and County planning, and local quality of life? All of the other panelists – most of whom are non-incumbents – exhibited in-depth knowledge and understanding of the Urban Limit Line, the ramifications of expansion, and the role of developers in the scheme of things, and were able to answer the question thoughtfully. So it was doubly surprising that Lori had no idea what it was all about.

Needless to say, based on my experience at the forum, I can definitely eliminate Lori Ogorchock as a candidate. As for who stands out in the mayoral race? That would be Dr. Sean Wright, who brings fresh ideas, positive energy, and long-range vision, and who, I have no doubt, would make an excellent Mayor. Sean has earned my vote.

Bo Dash


One Comment to “Writer concerned about Mayoral candidate’s lack of answer to Urban Limit Line question”

  1. After reading Bo (Bonnie) Dash’s editorial, I have to admit I am confused. Was Bo (Bonnie) Dash even at the same meeting I was? I was on the dais, asked the same question, and clearly the question was convoluted and compounded, and some members asked for clarification. Lori Ogorchock knew the subject (I was sitting next to her and we chatted about it) and she did answer the question. Lori was clearly aware of the ramifications of expanding the unban limit lines. The term “ill-informed” is used, and that is an unfair judgement or statement. In fact, I am questioning the entire editorial. It is biased. I believe Mrs. Dash is a California-based political consultant according to her LinkedIn profile and may have specifically targeted Lori Ogorchock. She is entitled to her position, but I ask the readers to consider the source’s motivation. Not a fair shot Bo (Bonnie) Dash.

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