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That is weird that there's a "Best Market" at that location and it sounds similar to best buy. Any idea if Best market was there in 1999? Also, if the murder occurred near edmondson avenue and Hae's body was put in the trunk to be buried later, why on earth would they drive back to near the murder site to ditch the car?? That's too stupid even for novice murderers. The dump site only makes sense if the murder happened near there and Hae's body was transported to Leakin Park some other way. Then the murdered would have to drive the car to the dump site and walk back to the murder site (assuming he didn't have a helpful accomplice like Jay on call).
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Very well written, Paul.You state:"I also see hotel and automobile dealerships leaving town. I see absurdly long processes to get retail centers at Edgewood and Alma Plaza thriving again."Why is that? Because of lack of leadership from our city council who are too busy with their own selfish priorities and pipe dreams and lack of desire to upset people--they feel it more important to play nice and waste time figuring out how to get civic engagement to work than dealing with our sinking tax revenues.They let the Hyatt get away because they were afraid to upset certain residents. They lost Alma Plaza as a neighborhood retail center because they were afraid of upsetting some people and we will see a repeat now with edgewood plaza. Car dealers have threatened to leave town and I do not see the council addressing that issue. What I do see is our money used for subsidizing more framer's markets and bans of bags.Yes, the city needs a revenue strategy, but also needs elected officials to implement that strategy. Our current council is not made up of people who can deal with that issue,.
The "we don't have a revenue problem, we have a spending problem" refrain is heard at all levels of government, especially in California related to the state budget. But that debate isn't relevant to what Paul wants to explore. Whatever level of revene is deemed best for Palo Alto, it is good to have a strategy and explore options.Perhaps readers will be more comfortable if the question were "how do development choices and policies affect Palo Alto's revenue over time". This certainly seems to be of interest on a project by project basis but as I understand Paul, he is suggesting we approach development related revenue from a strategy perspective and not reactive to each project as it comes along."Anna" and "John" can note with interest that their complaint came up with a different twist in the commission formed by the governor and legislature to discuss a revenue strategy for California.There many commissioners argued that we cannot separate revenue choices from spending choices. But they mean this argument to allow for the commission to look at higher revenue options becasue they believe we are not spending enough to create a great and competitive state.Here, Paul hasn't said whether he thinks we are spending too much, too little or just right. All he is asking is that we approach city revenues from a strategic perspective.
As so often is the case, Stephen Levy misses the point.Spending and Revenue in Palo Alto are inextricably intertwined, and it makes no sense to consider either in isolation from the other. We have oodles of money in Palo Alto compared to other cities, and yet we find ourselves in a budget hole that is every bit as big as these other cities, and worse than many. (I believe Cupertino has a surplus.) And we find ourselves losing revenue-generating businesses that are fleeing to neighboring jurisdictions.My contention is that we got fat and lazy over the past several decades hiring employees and throwing money at all kinds of non-essential nonsense. Having so much money made successive councils and staff leaders insensitive to the need to operate efficiently as well as the need to protect revenue generating businesses. Moreover, all these employees, and the bureaucratic processes they naturally entail, rather than enhancing Palo Alto's desirability as a business destination have inhibited it. If we were a leaner city, we'd likely forgo a lot of the plastic bag banning, over-managed, over-planned aspects of city governance that have done so much to make us a laughing stock, and have made us anathema to many retail businesses. I also object to Losch's approach because it fosters the illusion that we can continue to operate more or less as usual in town if only we find the magic revenue solution. This is demonstrably false.The best way to become conducive to new revenue generation is not to try to force it in the ways Losch suggests. If we restrain spending along with all the bureaucratic excesses and the desire to manage every aspect of commercial growth that come with it, we'll regain our desirability as a place to do business.It's not surprising that Levy does not agree with this - or even likely understand it - since he's spent his whole career advising governments on how to manage growth. Perhaps he should read a little more Hayek and a little less Marx.
I agree with Anna. The city has a serious spending issue.In this economic downturn, what else would you expect in terms of revenue? Everyone is having a revenue generating issue. Expecting people to spend more after we've just popped the largest debt bubble in recent history is absurd. So you basically can expect higher consumption, i.e. a return to shopping mentality, to not return. Most economists know that unemployment will continue to rise into 2010 - why would we expect people to spend more if we all know unemployment will continue to rise?I find it humorous that Levy advocates revenue generation based on the outdated 2000-2007 model that consumption equals growth when we are in a deflationary environment. The best way to balance the decrease in revenue stream is to cut costs. Period. 041b061a72