News

Holman, Scharff to vie for board seat on open-space district

Former Palo Alto mayors look to replace Nonette Hanko on the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space board of directors

Their Palo Alto City Council tenures may be coming to an end, but Karen Holman and Greg Scharff are preparing to square off in another competitive election this year, as each is looking to fill a seat on the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District board of directors.

The two council members -- and ideological rivals -- are vying for the Ward 5 seat that for decades has been occupied by Nonette Hanko, a Palo Alto resident who in 1972 helped to found the district. Hanko's decision not to run for another term has created the opportunity for the two former mayors, each of whom joined the council in 2009 and who in many ways personify the city's ongoing debate over land use.

The ward includes East Palo Alto and portions of Menlo Park, Palo Alto and Stanford. Another former Palo Alto mayor, Yoriko Kishimoto, currently serves on the board and represents Ward 2, which encompasses Cupertino, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and other portions of Palo Alto and Stanford.

As council members, Scharff and Holman have often clashed on policy issues, with Scharff generally voting along with the council's more developer-friendly side and Holman representing the slower-growth side.

Each candidate, however, believes she or he is perfectly suited to serving on the Open Space board. Scharff cites his years on other regional boards charged with protecting the environment and distributing funds to restoration projects. Holman points to her many years of advocating for environmental sustainability and open-space preservation, as well as her history of volunteering for the open-space district and her participation in shaping its vision.

Scharff is currently one of seven board members on the San Francisco Bay Area Restoration Authority, which raises and distributes funds for restoration projects around the San Francisco Bay. The authority in 2016 spearheaded Measure AA, a parcel tax that is projected to raise $25 million for shoreline projects in Santa Clara, San Mateo, Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, Solano and Sonoma counties, as well as San Francisco.

Scharff also has been serving on the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission since 2013. He currently chairs the organization's five-member Enforcement Committee and serves as alternate to Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese.

Scharff, who pulled his papers to fill the seat on Friday, told the Weekly that he found his work on the two boards "very fulfilling." Joining the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, which in 2014 passed its own $300 million bond (also known as Measure AA), would provide him with an opportunity to make sure public money is well-spent, he said.

"I have a lot of experience and strong skills on the finance side, in making sure the projects get implemented and implemented in the right way," Scharff said.

While Scharff's decision to jump into the race is relatively recent, Holman has had her sights on the district seat for several years, ever since Hanko informed her that she would not be seeking another term and asked her to apply for her seat.

"I've always been an advocate for the environment, whether it's open space, marshland habitat, trees -- it's in my blood," Holman said. "Her asking me -- that was an honor."

A former Palo Alto planning commissioner and vociferous critic of new developments, Holman has years been involved in the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, having served on the Community Advisory Committee that helped the district establish its 2014 Vision Plan. She co-chaired the committee in 2015-16.

Holman has also served as the director of the Palo Alto History Museum and a board member of the Palo Alto Historical Association.

While the race is just heating up, both candidates are already enlisting supporters. Scharff, who has tighter alliances within the broader state Democratic Party, said he has already received the endorsements of Assemblyman Marc Berman, D-Palo Alto, and state Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo. Holman, who has strong support among neighborhood leaders and who has been a regular attendee at the district's retreats and annual lunches, said she has already received the endorsements of six of the seven current board members (all but Cecily Harris).

This will be the third time Holman and Scharff face off in an election. Both were victorious in 2009, when Holman finished second in a 14-candidate field with 7,688 votes and Scharff finished fifth with 5,939 votes, enough to secure the final open council seat. In 2014, Holman and Scharff finished first and second, respectively, with Holman picking up 11,281 votes to Scharff's 10,145.

Scharff said he wasn't aware that Holman was running when he decided to apply for the seat (because incumbent Hanko isn't running, the deadline for submitting the paperwork is this Wednesday). Holman, who pulled papers on July 19, submitted them to the district's clerk last Wednesday. She said that Scharff's late entry into the race doesn't dampen her enthusiasm for serving.

"It's work that I've been committed to for a long time," Holman said. His entry into the race "makes it harder, but it doesn't change anything."

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Comments

17 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 7:28 am

Neither of these two should be on the Mid-Peninsula Open Space Regional District board. There are both terrible choices.


104 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 15, 2018 at 7:41 am

Let me see if I understand this. Gregg Scharff is running for this position so that he can keep an eye on the finances of the Open Space Projects. Gregg is a real estate attorney.

A few years back Gregg took a position as a comisioner for the Santa Clara Recycle and Reduction Commission. His first day on the job he showed up 15 minutes late, he mumbled something about traffic.Second meeting he did not show up at all.

Who is Gregg working for? The people or the corporations?

Gregg is a real estate attorney.

We will let the voters decide.




22 people like this
Posted by We need financial expertise on the district!
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 15, 2018 at 8:18 am

$300M is a lot of public money, and Greg Scharff has shown himself to be a real steward of spending money wisely. Karen Holman, on the other hand, has pushed for big purchases with no clear goal in sight! Buy The post office, buy a fancy bike bridge, buy the history museum!

Greg also has much better regional connections and this is a regional board - I will be happily supporting Greg Scharff!


91 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Aug 15, 2018 at 9:47 am

Online Name is a registered user.

Gregg Sharff is already a VP at ABAG (Association of Nay Area Governments) which has set a target of adding millions of people to the 9 county area under ABAG and now he wants to control our Open Space District, too??

I strongly advise you to read up on ABAG, its shady financial history where money for specific projects disappears, where one of its execs served a jail term for embezzling millions to buy himself a house on the Oregon coast and where numerous cities are rebelling against ABAG.

As for saving the Post Office built by Birge Clark and one of the few buildings giving Palo Alto it unique character, if that's not worth saving, what is? Should we just become Amywhere, USA?


12 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Aug 15, 2018 at 9:51 am

Online Name is a registered user.

(PS: I see there are 2 different Online Names posting here, one from Midtowm. I'm the one from Embarcadero Oaks.)


20 people like this
Posted by Elect Scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:01 am

Time for Holman to retire. Get 9 years on the council is been a steady stream of opposition to almost everything. [Portion removed.] Too focused on "historic" and " iconic" things.
How much did the bike bridge fiasco cost the city? And do we have a bridge yet? How much did it cost the city to repeal the historic home ordinance over a decade ago, that she spearheaded. Holman has cost the city plenty over her personal causes.
We need someone that cares about the city as a whole.


59 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:07 am

Posted by We need financial expertise on the district!, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis

>> $300M is a lot of public money, and Greg Scharff has shown himself to be a real steward of spending money wisely. Karen Holman, on the other hand, has pushed for big purchases with no clear goal in sight! Buy The post office, buy a fancy bike bridge, buy the history museum!

The purpose of MROSD is to -preserve- open space. The choice is between a preservationist (BTW the Post Office in question is a beautiful historic building) or a pro-development developer's advocate. The choice seems obvious, unless you are actually against the mission of MROSD.

>> Greg also has much better regional connections and this is a regional board - I will be happily supporting Greg Scharff!

What kind of "regional connections"? ABAG?


108 people like this
Posted by mauricio
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:19 am

mauricio is a registered user.

LOL. The "regional connections" Greg Scharff has are to an agency that is so shady and corrupt, it is in all but name an arm of the real estate development industry. Letting Scharff anywhere near the MROSD is literally hiring to fox to guard the chicken coop.


12 people like this
Posted by Sea Reddy
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:33 am

Sea Reddy is a registered user.

Greg Scharff is brilliant.

He will serve the community well.


61 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:39 am

Posted by Sea Reddy, a resident of College Terrace

>> Greg Scharff is brilliant.

Clearly.

>> He will serve the community well.

Forgot a word: ^
developer


Just because someone is "brilliant" doesn't mean their goals and values align with yours. Don't be so easily impressed.


20 people like this
Posted by Holman is disrespectful
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:43 am

Karen poses as a champion of the community, but she is utterly disrespectful to the public, the staff, and other community members. She always votes no even when she says she supports something, she talks more than anyone else without saying anything, the city attorney constantly corrects her because she says something wrong [portion removed.]


98 people like this
Posted by Karen Holman has the right experience
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:44 am

Look at Mr. Scharff’s attendance record on the various boards. He is mostly a no show. He is a real estate attorney who is very pro-development.

In contrast, Karen Holman has served on an advisory board to the district. She also has done a lot to preserve open space. Mr. Scharff’s goal is to fill it.

Mr. Scharff’s goal is to stay in public office so he can run for higher office, like Jerry Hill’s seat when he is termed out.


49 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:56 am

Online Name is a registered user.

Re Holman being disrespectful, have you ever heard her dismiss large current former officials and a large group of residents objecting to our unsustainable growth as a populist extremists? Has she ever written and funded misleading public opinion polls with "arguments" that restricting office growth will "destroy world-class education and health care as we know them" that ae so blatantly misleading they insult our intelligence?

[Portion removed.]


89 people like this
Posted by Look at Scharff's Record
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:58 am

To see the kind of public stewardship we can expect if Greg Scharff wins, just look at the giant office building at 101 Lytton. [Portion removed.] Scharff had the owners agree to provide a "public benefit" of reduced rent for a non-profit organization. But as he intended, that non-profit turned out to be the local Chamber of Commerce, which then lobbies at Council meetings for ever more office development and even sent out an email favoring certain Council candidates.

The Chamber of Commerce doesn't represent the public -- or even the typical Palo Alto business owner. To call reducing its rent a public benefit is shameful when true charitable organizations that serve low-income, disadvantaged, and marginalized residents struggle to afford Palo Alto rents.

I shudder to think what kind of new "public benefits" Scharff will dream up if he gains a say over our open space. [Portion removed.]


95 people like this
Posted by Annette
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 15, 2018 at 11:10 am

Annette is a registered user.

When does it ever work out to put the fox in charge of the hen house? I think it is kinda oxymoronic to put a heavily pro-development real estate guy in charge of open space. Why give Scharff the opportunity to influence what happens with our open space given the impact of his influence on our built environment? He contributed many votes that led to our jobs:housing imbalance and resulting problems such as the Hotel President situation.

Also, per the article: "While Scharff's decision to jump into the race is relatively recent, Holman has had her sights on the district seat for several years, ever since Hanko informed her that she would not be seeking another term and asked her to apply for her seat."

That's an important paragraph; Hanko endorses Holman. In fact, 6 of the 7 current Board members endorse her. That's a very high approval rating.


107 people like this
Posted by Clear Choice
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 11:25 am

Much of the above is simply inaccurate about Holman and meant to smear her with no regard for the truth. Let's instead look at what is relevant - her record with MROSD and her regard by those currently serving on its Board of seven, 3 of whom I know.

She has already garnered 6 of these 7 Board member's endorsements. These Board members know Holman well because she actually has a substantial long term interest and participation with MROSD that Mr. Scharff completely lacks.

Holman attends MROSD retreats, legislative lunches and occasional Board meetings. Mr. Scharff is nowhere in sight.

Holman, as stated in the article, Co-chaired the Citizens Advisory Committee on the MROSD Vision Plan in 2014.

Mr. Scharff is the new to all of this, finding in MROSD simply the only vacant seat he might inhabit with really having no record of past interest in the organization at all. He can only offer a record of environmental taxes and offers of financial oversight. Sad.

The actual record points to a clear and superior choice of Karen Holman to fill this MROSD Board position.


88 people like this
Posted by Holman Cares
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 15, 2018 at 11:36 am

[Portion removed.]

Holman has been an advocate for our environment and open spaces her entire career. She has been endorsed by the Sierra Club in each of her last two elections (and undoubtedly will be again), and was urged to seek this seat by Hanko herself. 6/7 of the current board members have endorsed her.

Holman's opponent, on the other hand, is a real estate attorney [portion removed.] His last minute entrance into this campaign also shows his mere desire to stay in the public's eye in order to run for higher office in the future.

Holman cares. She cares about this city, she cares about the environment, and she cares about our open spaces. She has the right kind of experience for this position, and she will put the needs of our precious open spaces before her own political desires.


60 people like this
Posted by Yard sign for Holman?
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Aug 15, 2018 at 12:27 pm

Yard sign for Holman? is a registered user.

I completely agree that Holman is the better qualified candidate for this job. Is there a way I can get a yard sign for Holman?


68 people like this
Posted by Fred Balin
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 15, 2018 at 12:42 pm

Fred Balin is a registered user.

Four years ago in mid-June 2014, City Council member Greg Scharff loaned his campaign for re-election (i.e., his recipient committee) $10,000. In August, he loaned the committee another $10,000; in September, another $5,000; in October, another $25,000, and, after the election in December, a final, additional $10,000: a total of $60,000 in all.

In addition to his self-financing, he raised $37,000 from others on his way to spending $97,000, a record at the time for a Palo Alto city council race. The difference of $60,000 (equal to the cumulative amount of Scharff’s loans) as well his recipient committee have remained open until at least the end of June of this year, the last day of the most recent FPPC semi-annual reporting period for those not running for re-election to the same office.

In contrast, for example, was the city council campaign of A.C. Johnston in the same 2014 election. Johnston loaned his committee, $20,000; raised $39,000 from other sources; and spent $59,000. The $20,000 difference, the amount of his loan, he personally absorbed by terminating his campaign with a balance of $0 as required, at the end of the final 2014 reporting period (12/31/14).

California FPPC campaign rules allow a committee surplus to be rolled over into another campaign, but not a debt. It also allows a candidate to keep a committee open as long as needed to raise money, for instance, to pay off a loan or other debt.

So why has council member Scharff, continued to keep his committee open and his $60K loan unpaid three and half years after the final reporting period in 2014 and most likely longer? Your guess is as good as mine.

But before he spends a dime on his campaign for a seat on the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District board of directors, he should terminate his “Greg Scharff for Council 2014” recipient committee via FPPC filing which then will be available to the public, who can see if he absorbed all or part of the loan, and if the latter, who contributed and in what amounts to wiping out the debt.

If this does not occur, the public will know nothing about the status of this loan until a month after the next semi-annual reporting period, December 31, 2018, well after both the election related to his new campaign and his term on the city council are completed.

Anything less provides renewed and increased attention and questions related to a matter that should have been resolved at the end of 2014.


13 people like this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 15, 2018 at 12:59 pm

Now we know what he means by “country lawyer”.


14 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 15, 2018 at 1:12 pm

So, fred, you are basically saying that Greg had done nothing wrong. You state he is allowed to keep a committee open until the debt is repaid. So why do you ask why it is open? Then got say he cannot spend on his new campaign? Why? Not that it is against the rules. It is because you do not want him to.
Seems a bit early in the campaign to start with innuendo and rumors.


3 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Aug 15, 2018 at 1:45 pm

You don't need to be in Ward 5 to have an opinion on these candidates, but I think you do need to be in Ward 5 to vote for either of them.

FYI, here's the best map I've been able to find -- Web Link

Looks like Downtown North, University South, and Professorville neighborhoods are in Yoriko's territory.


23 people like this
Posted by Scharff should clean up
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 15, 2018 at 1:47 pm

[Post removed.]


51 people like this
Posted by Annette
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 15, 2018 at 1:59 pm

Annette is a registered user.

It's a little crazy how much $ is spent on campaigns at every level and absolutely absurd that more $ is spent on a local campaign than some people earn in a year (or longer). Until recently the hue and cry for campaign financing reform was aimed at national elections. Before long, state elections were added. And Palo Alto joined that sorry list a couple of elections ago. What's next? Council candidates purchasing t.v. ads?

Those glossy fliers with interchangeable photos are essentially campaign propaganda. And environmentally offensive junk mail.

Locally, a major political party and various PACS have contributed heavily to campaigns. Mark Berman's campaign alone contributed reams and reams of glossy paper to the landfill. OBJECT! Support campaign reform and a maximum spending limit. Make reasonable campaign spending and not creating environmental waste criteria that matter when YOU vote.

Seats should be EARNED, not PURCHASED.


46 people like this
Posted by Flooded
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 15, 2018 at 2:12 pm

@Online Name
That is interesting to hear about Scharff’s poor attendance as a member of the county Recycling committee.
What is a lot more importance to voters in the floodplain is that he has had terrible attendance the past year and a half since he was appointed as our representative on the San Francisquito Creek Joint Power Agency. He has attended less than half of the meetings over that time and Palo Alto has not been well represented as a result.
Is this a pattern for other important committees that he has been appointed to which appear to pad his record? Will the press do a good job looking into the attendance records of him and Holman so that the voters know what real commitment to the job they are likely to get?


13 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 15, 2018 at 2:31 pm

Online name- perhaps got can share with us when Greg was on the Santa Clara recycling and reduction commission and the source for your attendance claims. Funny that je does not mention that in the article


44 people like this
Posted by Holman is smarter
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 3:19 pm

Holman is smarter is a registered user.


There’s a difference between intellectual power and power to move your mouth. Especially for knowing how to be a steward of something on behalf of the public (say vs the Cal Ave business association)

You need both skill sets (intellectual and oratory skills) and I am IMPRESSED by Karen Holman when she speaks up, wish it was more like how she slayed the dumb responses from staff about the initiative to cap office space.

Karen - you are a powerhouse whom I would trust to leave my children with, we need more of you!



12 people like this
Posted by Holman is smarter
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 3:22 pm

Holman is smarter is a registered user.


I meant that I would entrust my kids with KH as a signal of total trust.

Don’t mean to be sexist and that men can’t handle children.


70 people like this
Posted by He fooled us twice
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 4:18 pm

Greg Scharff is a developer [portion removed] who has run really misleading campaigns disclaiming his overdevelopment inclinations. Letting him have any power in relationship to open space is the fox guarding the hen house. Environmentalists, if there are any left in California, Beware. Give this guy a wide berth and a huge dose of skepticism. He will get some endorsement (or, as he did in Palo Alto, make it look like he has an endorsement he doesn't really have) that will seem very convincing that he is not the guy his overdevelopment record on Council demonstrates.

Karen Holman is at least as experienced and is running out of a sincere desire to protect open space.

I will be voting for Holman, and hoping the rest of voters outside of Palo Alto can see through Scharff's slick and misleading rhetoric (if his past campaigns are any indication of what is to come).


57 people like this
Posted by Fan of Karen
a resident of Palo Verde
on Aug 15, 2018 at 5:13 pm

Karen Holman is an intelligent, honorable person of high integrity, who cares deeply about our local environment. She should be elected to the Open Space District board.


13 people like this
Posted by Greg is a strong enviromentalist
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 15, 2018 at 5:18 pm

I am so glad to see Greg Scharff running. Greg’s work on the San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority and the Bay Conservation and Development Commission shows he is a true environmental steward. Greg is smart, thoughtful and balanced. He knows how to get stuff done. With midpenn issuing 300 million in bonds I know that I will feel better knowing that Greg is on the Board.


53 people like this
Posted by He fooled us twice
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 5:25 pm

Greg Scharff is a strong on doing what the developers want. He is only an environmentalist in his ads when it's campaign time. He will run a really strong ads trying to disclaim his developer-centric practices. Don't be fooled.

With the federal government trying to destroy environmental protections, we do not need someone locally who is so good at claiming to be an environmentalist while working so hard to let developers have their way with the environment. No to Scharff.


35 people like this
Posted by Flooded
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 15, 2018 at 5:42 pm

@Greg is an enviro
I recall watching the city council meeting when Scharff announced that he had been appointed to the SF Bay Restoration Authority. He literally could not think of the name of the agency. Like his dismal attendance on other boards, this shows his true colors.


13 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:18 pm

I noticed many postings parroting the claim that scharff had a"dismal" attendance record at various commissions that he served on. Yet no one has actually provided any real proof of this claim.
[Portion removed.]


27 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:19 pm

[Post removed.]


26 people like this
Posted by campaign funding
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:43 pm

campaign funding is a registered user.

During his 2014 council election campaign Greg Scharff made a large personal loan to his campaign fund.

Leading up to the 2014 council election Liz Kniss also made a personal loan to her campaign fund. After the election the amount of her personal loan was covered by late donations, too late to report to voters prior to election day. These funding sources included developers and individuals from related professions. Despite telling voters earlier in her campaign she would not accept donations from developers. There were also other reporting irregularities which obscured the professional affiliations of her donors [portion removed.] Liz Kniss is still under investigation [portion removed.]

Greg Scharff needs to finalizes his 2014 election campaign account so that he too does not appear to be less than transparent with the voters as to where the sources for his new campaign funding are coming from.


9 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:47 pm

[Post removed.]


1 person likes this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:51 pm

[Post removed.]


40 people like this
Posted by Thank you, Karen
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:58 pm

We residents of the Mid-Peninsula look toward our hillsides and enjoy exquisite views of magnificent open space. This is a legacy to be cherished, and we residents and voters have the opportunity to ensure the long-term protection of the land and the continuation of the inspired and inspiring work of the visionaries – including current and longstanding Board Member Nonette Hanko – who were responsible for the creation of the Mid-Peninsula Open Space District and for the conservation and preservation of vast tracts of open space which we enjoy today.

Six of the current Mid-Peninsula Open Space Board Members including Ms. Hanko support the candidacy of Karen Holman, who for years has been a dedicated and conscientious civic leader and public servant. Karen brings to her candidacy for the Open Space Board: 1. her experience of government and public policy through her longstanding service on both the Palo Alto Planning and Transportation Commission and the Palo Alto City Council; 2. her extensive and broad-based knowledge and expertise regarding land use matters, 3. proven fiscal responsibility, and 4. a commitment to environmental stewardship and advocacy.

Karen is superbly qualified for this position and will honorably and capably serve the interests of our community and our region.


21 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:58 pm

@ Elect Scharff

PROOF?!! That he did not show up?

I was at both those meetings.



8 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 15, 2018 at 7:29 pm

Online name-- of interest is the fact that I can find no source for the fact that scharff was ever on the
Santa Clara Recycle and Reduction Commission.
They're is no mention of it on the pammi alto website:

Web Link

But got are saying that this commission only met twice-- ever?
Have got asked him?

[Portion removed.]


19 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 15, 2018 at 8:46 pm

@ Elect Scharff

PROOF?!! That he did not show up?

I was at both those meetings.

County of Santa Clara
Recycling and Waste Reduction Commission of Santa Clara County
Recycling and Waste Reduction Division
1555 Berger Drive, Building 2, Suite 300
San Jose, CA 95112-2716
(408) 282-3180 FAX (408) 280-6479
www.ReduceWaste.org
Commissioners: James R. Griffith – Chair, Linda J. LeZotte – Vice-Chari, Michael F. Kotowski, Manh Nguyen, Teresa O’Neill,
Greg Scharff, Rod Sinks, Jan Pepper, Cat Tucker, Mike Wasserman
RECYCLING AND WASTE REDUCTION COMMISSION MINUTES
October 26, 2016
Isaac Newton Senter Auditorium
70 W. Hedding Street
San Jose CA 95110
Business Meeting at 5:30 p.m.
Voting Members in Attendance Representing
Jim Griffith, City of Sunnyvale SMaRT Station® Cities
Michael F. Kotowski, City of Campbell West Valley Cities
Linda J. LeZotte, SCVWD Santa Clara Valley Water District
Teresa O’Neill, City of Santa Clara Central County Cities
Mike Wasserman, County of Santa Clara County of Santa Clara
Voting Members Not in Attendance Representing
Manh Nguyen, City of San Jose City of San Jose
Jan Pepper, City of Los Altos Member at Large
Greg Scharff, City of Palo Alto Member at Large
Rod Sinks, City of Cupertino North County Cities
Cat Tucker, City of Gilroy South County Cities
County Staff to the Commission
Bill Grimes, Manager, TAC Administrator
Lisa Rose, Commission Staff
Others in Attendance
Mark Bowers, City of Sunnyvale
Matthew Chavez, Silicon Valley Talent Partnership
Anthony Eulo, City of Morgan Hill and TAC Chair
Matt Krupp, City of Palo Alto
Alana Rivadeneyra, City of San Jose
Cole Smith, Composting Education Program
Dave Staub, City of Santa Clara


Like this comment
Posted by 2 Palo altans
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 15, 2018 at 8:48 pm

Yoriko Kishimoto is on the board already. How does Palo Alto get two seats?


2 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 15, 2018 at 8:58 pm

Web Link

Above is the link you can look up the facts yourself.


36 people like this
Posted by Flooded
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:39 pm

@ elect scharff
The flood control board or SFCJPA is a much more important board to Palo Alto residents than the County Recycling Com. At your request I checked his attendance for 2017, the last full year , although you could have done the same checking. It appears that he missed 7of 10 meetings!
A backhanded thanks for getting me to get the actual data. That attendance is worse than dismal and even worse than I thought. It is horrendous and really irresponsible to all the residents whose homes are at risk and who are paying high flood insurance.


43 people like this
Posted by Karen Holman has the right experience
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 11:09 pm

Here is Mr. Scharff attendance at the mostly monthly meetings of the SFCJPA dealing with flooding in Palo Alto between January 2017 (when he joined the committee) to March 2018 (for which the most recent minutes were posted).

Attended March 22, 2018
Missed February 22, 2018
Missed January 25, 2018
Attended December 14, 2017
Missed November 16, 2017
Missed October 26, 2017
Missed September 28, 2017
Missed August 24, 2017
No meeting in July 2017
Missed June 29, 2017
Arrived late at May 25, 2017
Missed April 27, 2017
Attended March 23, 2017
No meeting in February 2017
Attended January 26, 2017

Summary: 5 meetings attended (one late), 8 meetings missed.

Source: Web Link

I encourage others to document the attendance of Mr. Scharff at other boards and committees he's worked himself onto.


4 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Aug 15, 2018 at 11:15 pm

@ 2 Palo altans -- Palo Alto does not get two of the seven seats all to ourselves. We get half of Menlo Park & East Palo Alto seat (Hanko's) and half of Los Altos Hills, Sunnyvale & Cupertino seat (Kishimoto's). Each seat represents a similar number of residents. And like our congressional districts, they don't align with city limits.

No matter who is elected, we have already voted for MROSD to spend something like $100 million annually moving ahead. The current Strategic Plan and the Budget and Action Plan are on the MROSD website. Looking forward to campaign statements for any differences in approach to managing the enterprise and achieving the objectives. Or indications of taking the organization in a different direction.


9 people like this
Posted by Jim
a resident of Meadow Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 6:47 am

Sounds like Hanko may have tipped of Holman years in advance of her stepping down. And Holman files at near end of the period. This is highly unethical. Midpen has run this shell game before trying to hand pick successors without any public debate. No doubt Holman expected no challenge. Someone be sure to question her on this


7 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2018 at 7:19 am

Karen Holman has- scharff has attended the may and June meetings

Online name- so again, there have only been two meetings of this commission?

Why are posters allowed to comment on scharffs supposed acts of villainy, but the issue of human and the bike bridge cannot be mentioned?


27 people like this
Posted by Jim lies
a resident of Meadow Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 7:19 am

@Jim You are absolutely wrong!

Greg Scharff filed at the last moment. Not Holman. Get your facts straight before spreading lies.


6 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2018 at 7:28 am

Online name- for full disclosure got should mention that Greg was at the June 2015 , meeting.
I also noticed that for many meetings, pslo alto had no representative. Any idea why?


12 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2018 at 7:31 am

Jim lies- according to the story Holman filed on the 8th, with the deadline being the 15th. Pretty last minute as well. The question is when did hankook decide not to run? And who did she inform?


21 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2018 at 7:37 am

Scharf has missed more than two meetings.

County of Santa Clara
Recycling and Waste Reduction Commission of Santa Clara County
Recycling and Waste Reduction Division
1555 Berger Drive, Building 2, Suite 300
San Jose, CA 95112-2716
(408) 282-3180 FAX (408) 280-6479
www.ReduceWaste.org
Commissioners: James R. Griffith, Chair; Michael F. Kotowski, Linda J. LeZotte, Manh Nguyen, Teresa O’Neill,
Greg Scharff, Rod Sinks, Jan Pepper, Cat Tucker, Mike Wasserman

RECYCLING AND WASTE REDUCTION COMMISSION MINUTES
March 2, 2016
Isaac Newton Senter Auditorium
70 W. Hedding Street
San Jose CA 95110
Business Meeting at 5:30 p.m.
Voting Members in Attendance Representing
Jim Griffith, City of Sunnyvale SMaRT Station® Cities
Michael F. Kotowski, City of Campbell West Valley Cities
Linda J. LeZotte, SCVWD Santa Clara Valley Water District
Manh Nguyen, City of San Jose City of San Jose
Teresa O’Neill, City of Santa Clara Central County Cities
Jan Pepper, City of Los Altos Member at Large
Rod Sinks, City of Cupertino North County Cities
Cat Tucker, City of Gilroy South County Cities
Mike Wasserman, County of Santa Clara County of Santa Clara

Voting Members Not in Attendance Representing
Greg Scharff, City of Palo Alto Member at Large

County Staff to the Commission
Bill Grimes, Manager, TAC Administrator
Lisa Rose, Commission Staff
Others in Attendance
Mark Bowers, City of Sunnyvale
Rob D’Arcy, California Product Stewardship Council
Anthony Eulo, City of Morgan Hill and TAC Chair
Mark Finhill, Member of the public
Michael Gross, Zanker Recycling
Matt Krupp, City of Palo Alto
Doug Muirhead, Morgan Hill resident
Alana Rivadeneyra, City of San Jose
Dave Staub, City of Santa Clara


Like this comment
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 16, 2018 at 8:37 am

[Post removed.]


4 people like this
Posted by Annette
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 16, 2018 at 9:09 am

Annette is a registered user.

@Mark Weiss: I am sorry for others that your post was removed. I have learned to appreciate your references to music so I hit the link and enjoyed the song. Thank You!


30 people like this
Posted by Flooded
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 16, 2018 at 9:17 am

@Elect Scharff
[Portion removed.]
Scharff’s [portion removed] attendance record for the two boards cited above is likely just the tip of the iceberg. If you really cared about an honest discussion about his record and commitment to the bodies he is supposed to serve, you would provide objective data on his attendance.
He has built his political resume by being appointed to a bunch of regional boards, but he appears to have a uniquely terrible pattern of attendance for many of those bodies. That should be a major issue for the candidates. Hopefully, the press will do their job in reporting. The voters deserve to know the truth.


8 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2018 at 9:22 am

Flooded- I do not need to provide data on his attendance.[Portion removed.] If you really want objective data then provide data on overall attendance at these meetings, how does his record compare to other attendees? Does Holman belong to any commissions? What is her attendance like? If she does nit serve on commissions, then why not?
[Portion removed.]


13 people like this
Posted by Do not elect this guy
a resident of Escondido School
on Aug 16, 2018 at 9:38 am

[Post removed.]


40 people like this
Posted by Leslie
a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 9:49 am

> Flooded- I do not need to provide data on his attendance.

No, that's false. Scharff's record of poor attendance on other boards is well known and a prime reason why he's a poor candidate for this position.

Holman has the endorsement of outgoing board member Nonette Hanko as well as almost all other Midpeninsula Regional Open Space board members. Scharff has none.


11 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2018 at 9:52 am

Jim- according to the daily post, hanko told Holman she was stepping down and asked Holman to take over.
I am pretty sure that is not how democracy works. If you are not running for election again , you make an announcement . That allows anyone interested to run for the office. You do not hand pick your successor.


9 people like this
Posted by ScharfFan
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Aug 16, 2018 at 10:04 am

It's sad to see some of you making our wonderful former mayor into some sort matinee villain! He is the ONLY choice for this seat.

He is intellectually superior, he is concise and logical in his thinking, and makes decisions in a timely manner. His track record as a environmentalist stands for itself. He is an avid supporter of environmental causes and has been serving on the boards of BCDC, JPA, ABAG, and many other local and state committees for several years. His time as our mayor has proven he knows how to get things done, spend money wisely and work well as part of a committee. He and will be an excellent steward of our Regional Open Space.


7 people like this
Posted by Elect scharf
a resident of Community Center
on Aug 16, 2018 at 10:07 am

[Post removed.]


39 people like this
Posted by Holman is smarter
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2018 at 10:44 am

Holman is smarter is a registered user.


Not surprised to hear that Scharff missed 7 out of 10 meetings of the flood control board

I’ll be interested in seeing who wants him on this board.


50 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Aug 16, 2018 at 10:51 am

Online Name is a registered user.

"He is an avid supporter of environmental causes and has been serving on the boards of BCDC, JPA, ABAG, and many other local and state committees for several years."

Check out ABAG's goals. They want to add 2,000.000 to the Bay area and about a million housing units, making the jobs:housing imbalance worse, pushing up housing prices and adding 1,000,000 more commuters to our roads.

How will that help the environment or preserve open space?


10 people like this
Posted by Holman is ineffective
a resident of Green Acres
on Aug 16, 2018 at 11:13 am

Scharff is the clear choice if you want someone that can accomplish the goals of the Open Space District. [Portion removed.] Scharff has led or been strongly involved in almost all of the initiatives of the City Council. Scharff had proven his financial stewardship and his careful understanding of the City Budget. [Portion removed.] Scharff has been engaged on a regional basis on numerous boards of which he has risen to leadership positions. [Portion removed.] If you want the Vision Plan for Mid Pen to be successful Vote Scharff.


30 people like this
Posted by Holman is smarter
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2018 at 12:45 pm

Holman is smarter is a registered user.



So Scharff comes in late and behind Holman to bid on this position and probably has his cronies ready to help him like the dear ABAG leaders

quote from Scharff in the Post that he’s gotten really involves “in these” environmental issues is telling.

“These” environmental issues...


Like this comment
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 16, 2018 at 12:49 pm

Curmudgeon is a registered user.

[Post removed.]


4 people like this
Posted by BlackbeardsMom
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 16, 2018 at 3:21 pm

BlackbeardsMom is a registered user.

Council member Scharff isn't only the best person for the position, he's the ONLY person for this position.

He will get things done in a smart, focused, no-nonsense kind of way, just as he did when he was mayor of our wonderful city. He LISTENS to the people, doesn't ramble and cut them off. He isn't flippant about their concerns and is consistently respectful to staff. His quick processing skills have proven he will be an excellent asset to this Board.

This is a position where experience and leadership count. In addition to being an excellent steward for our regional open space, he is a trustworthy local asset to ensure Palo Alto is properly represented in all aspects of decision making the Open Space BOD will be involved in. He's got my vote!


23 people like this
Posted by margaret heath
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 4:05 pm

margaret heath is a registered user.

Throughout this article the writer has put Greg Scharff's name before Karen Holman's. Including Scharff's background described in detail in 7 sentences, before writing 5 shorter sentences about Holman. Although I didn't count the number of words. By consistently mentioning Scharff first before Holman's readers might mistakenly think that one candidate is being given preferential treatment over the other.


10 people like this
Posted by margaret heath
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 4:12 pm

margaret heath is a registered user.

Correction, The first opening sentence now puts Karen Holman's name first.


43 people like this
Posted by margaret heath
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 4:15 pm

margaret heath is a registered user.


It could equally well be said that Greg Scharff has been a "vociferous" advocate for new development.


46 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 16, 2018 at 4:35 pm

Curmudgeon is a registered user.

"By consistently mentioning Scharff first before Holman's readers might mistakenly think that one candidate is being given preferential treatment over the other."

They also diligently delete pro Holman postings, including my observation that Holman would preserve our open space but Scharff would pave it over. C'mon now, Holman's preservationist creds are as impeccable as Scharff's career in real estate development.


53 people like this
Posted by Annette
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 17, 2018 at 10:22 am

Annette is a registered user.

While I agree that Scharff is smart and concise I am surprised to read the post that describes him as someone who LISTENS to the people, doesn't cut them off, and isn't flippant about their concerns. I have observed quite the opposite at CC meetings, with the most notable example being how he, as our new mayor, handled the issue of whether the Comp Plan should include the implementation programs. His comments about the TOT were similarly dismissive of views that did not align with his own.

I also don't see him as a leader who encourages debate. He championed the practice of quickly accepting a motion from a member of the majority, effectively framing the ensuing "discussion" of controversial issues narrowly. Further, he also often limited speaker time on divisive matters. He may be a strong and effective advocate of his own views, but I think we are best served by people who are open to discussion and willing to consider opposing points of view. But, then, I prefer win-win to win-lose.


11 people like this
Posted by Fred Balin
a resident of College Terrace
on Sep 14, 2018 at 4:03 pm

Fred Balin is a registered user.

FYI.
As per recent FPPC filings, Greg Scharff paid off his $60K loan to his 2014 city council campaign out of his own pocket (except for the $1.5K cash still on hand) on Aug 20, and terminated his recipient committee, which had remained open since that election season. That book is finally closed.


21 people like this
Posted by Fred Balin
a resident of College Terrace
on Oct 15, 2018 at 1:42 pm

Fred Balin is a registered user.

Disclosure: I am an endorser of Karen Holman and a contributor to her campaign, but also someone who has followed local campaign financing for some time. e.g., Web Link. The acquisition, compilation, and decision to post the following publicly available information is mine alone and without input from the Holman campaign.



Continuing on from my post, just above, of a month ago:

On August 20th of this year, the day that Palo Alto city council member Greg Scharff absorbed his $60,000 loan to his 2014 Palo Alto city council campaign and terminated his recipient committee, he also loaned his new campaign committee, for Board Member of the Mid-Penninsula Regional Open Space District Ward 5, $1,500.00.

Ward 5 encompasses all of Palo Alto, except for some reason, Downtown North and Professorville; all of East Palo Alto; and a section of Menlo Park. You can refer to the Ward 5 map at Web Link

Ten days later, on August 30th, Scharff loaned his committee an additional $20,000.00; and five weeks later, on October 4, he loaned his committee $60,000 more.

Scharff’s total loans to his campaign to date stand at $81,500.00 .

His recipient committee’s first pre-election filing covering contributions and expenditures for the period from when he opened his campaign on August 10 to the end of the first pre-election reporting period on September 22, showed total contributions from all other sources as $260.00, including two named contributors. (This race follows state law which requires public disclosure of names for contributions of $100 or more. Palo Alto’s rules for its city council elections is more stringent: $50 and above requires disclosure.)

Since then, in addition to his latest $60K loan, he has also reported one new contribution of $1,000, the threshold that triggers 24-hour filing of contributions of this size or greater.

Any other monetary contributions or loans (i.e. all less than $1,000) since the end of the 1st pre-election reporting period, will not be known until after the end of the second pre-election reporting period (October 20), and by the deadline for filing the required FPPC 460 forms (Oct 25) with the District Clerk for the Mid-Penninsula Regional Open Space District.

His opponent in the race, fellow, termed-out Palo Alto city council Member Karen Holman has, as per her committee's first pre-election fling, contributed $250 of her own money into the campaign. In addition, she has received a total of $11,698 from 40 unique and identified donors (e.g., $100 or more), $499 from other contributors, and $120 in non-monetary contributions, for total contributions received of $12,567. No contributions or loans of $1,000 have been reported during the current (second pre-election) reporting period to date.

No comment.


16 people like this
Posted by margaret heath
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 15, 2018 at 8:38 pm

margaret heath is a registered user.

The question is, why is it so important for Greg Scharff to be prepared to spend over $81K to date for a seat on this particular board at this particular time? To hire a PR firm in Berkeley to run his campaign, blanket us with mailings of expensive glossy brochures, and use Nationbuilder to expand his online presence in order to be elected? Especially spending this kind of money running for a board position of an organization he appears to have had no prior involvement with, and so far no record of ever even donating to.

Loaning this huge amount to his campaign could also be seen as an acknowledgement of just how well qualified and what a formidable candidate he is up against. Someone who has a proven record of involvement with the MPOSD, has a huge list of endorsers from the Sierra Club on down, relies on individual donations to fund her campaign, and a dedicated group of supporters for a "boots on the ground" grass roots campaign.

Not having to pay a PR firm in Berkeley and loan herself over $80K in an attempt to "buy" this position.


8 people like this
Posted by margaret heath
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 15, 2018 at 8:48 pm

margaret heath is a registered user.

The first sentence of my post above should read:

The question is, why is it so important for Greg Scharff to be prepared to spend over $81K to date of his OWN money for a seat on this particular board at this particular time?


10 people like this
Posted by Karen Holman has my vote.
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 31, 2018 at 11:51 am

Karen Holman has my vote. is a registered user.

I plan to vote for Karen. Her long-time devotion to preserving natural, open spaces is widely well-regarded amongst those of us who follow such things. She is an excellent choice for this role.

As far as I know, Greg Scharff has never expressed much interest in this Board's activity before now. He has, however, recently been helpful to Stanford in their push to get their General Use Permit (GUP) approved. Hmmmm. Could these things be connected in some way? Part of what is at stake in the GUP is negotiations over extensions of the long-term agreements that control Stanford's use of open space that they own.



Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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