Election Update

G’day Brentwood community,

After taking a day to reflect on the last nine months of our lives here in Brentwood, I can’t help but think how proud I am of the community engagement that swelled around the Measure L Initiative. It became clear we were a divided community and we had many different reasons for supporting or rejecting the Vineyards @ Deer Creek. For me, it was the developers massive plan and brazen attempt to quadruple the density proposed for SPA2 without regard for its limiting geographic location. Trying to sell a Project to bust through our Urban Limit Line yet again for housing in a rural corridor never meant for this scale of development was a mistake. This plan was sure to generate more traffic, congestion and sheer mayhem for years to come. It made promises for some improvements that were out of its control as clearly pointed out by many of us, as well as the City of Antioch. Their marketing was interesting, always pointing out what dire things would happen if we didn’t adopt their proposal for SPA2, depicting us as savages and naysayers, but clearly Brentwood disagreed in their concept.

I want to thank our tireless Alliance for a Better Brentwood leadership team for all their work and dedication. We, as well as many of you continued to dissect and dismantle all the intricacies of this 193-page Initiative which proved to be its downfall. Week in and week out, we researched, we learned, we strategized and shared information together. We took on a machine backed by millions of dollars, breaking down their Project into information people could understand, pointing out why we didn’t need to buy this plan.

I want to thank our major donor The Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, and the hundreds of Brentwood residents, businesses and landowners who donated money to our campaign allowing us to fight for Brentwood’s future.

Thank you to the Greenbelt Alliance who helped us launch our campaign, and the other organizations who backed us – the Sierra Club, Carpenters Union Local 152, the East Bay Times, Marsh Creek and Delta Dems and the myriad of other clubs and organizations some of whom adopted official resolutions against Measure L.

There are the dozens and dozens of volunteers who never let up even when under constant pressure and scrutiny from our opponents – you requested almost 700 lawn signs to help us display our opposition to Measure L, driving the conversation with friends and neighbors. You passed out doorhangers and flyers; attended, spoke and presented at meetings; you composed letters and e-mails representing us, and kept Measure L in all the blogs on social media, you sign-waved on the corners – all to defeat a massive, invasive plan that didn’t uphold Brentwood’s values.

Moving forward, The Alliance for a Better Brentwood does not stop here. We have many issues and challenges to address here in Brentwood. We need to keep a watchful eye on City planning, especially Planning Commission and City Council agendas.

As I said before, one challenge at a time, and we aren’t dissolving – we are now a force of an entire community that banded together like never before, and we aren’t going away anytime soon.

Thanks everyone. Kathy

November 1, 2019 – Antioch’s Letter

Hello Concerned Brentwood Voters,

I finally got the chance to post some facts about Antioch and their position on Measure L.

In the first part of this document is a letter submitted to the City of Brentwood as part of the DEIR (Draft Environmental Impact Report) process. In reading through the letter from Forrest Ebbs, Community Development Director for Antioch, does it sound as though Antioch is chomping at the bit for this parcel? That’s about as far from Mr. Ebbs mind as I can tell. Then, the many concerns he raises as it relates to the Vineyards @ Deer Creek/Measure L appear to be shrugged off in the Final EIR response. I’ll let you read the documents for yourselves.

The items that jump out at me are: Antioch’s concern over the future impact of an intersection at Deer Valley Road and Sand Creek Road, and they don’t think the impact was adequately studied; they don’t think the cumulative conditions and the fact that the Project will exacerbate already unsafe conditions on Deer Valley Road was taken into consideration; and they don’t think that their development west of Kaiser Hospital, “The Ranch” totaling 1,177 single family homes was included in the cumulative analysis of traffic circulation. Wow!

The other elephant in the room is a BIG one that we’ve been telling you about. The fees paid to the East Contra Costa Regional Fee and Financing Authority (ECCRFFA) as it relates to the Measure L Project and how they will NOT resolve the impact of addressing regional traffic issues. In fact, Antioch admits GBN’s contributions to ECCRFFA are not committed to construct the improvements on Deer Valley Road, and the DEIR incorrectly assumes that payment of such a fee will specifically mitigate Project impacts without documentation! Furthermore, the City of Antioch suggests that a mitigation measure be included that requires GBN Partners to pay to actually improve Deer Valley Road to meet safe traffic standards typical of 55 mph roadways, and then seek reimbursement. None of that is happening.

In the Final EIR response to Antioch, it is pointed out that 600 Project vehicles will use Deer Valley Road to travel north on a daily basis – let me have you picture that for a moment. It further states that this increase in traffic along Deer Valley Road as a result of the Project could substantially increase hazards on a roadway with known safety issues, that the timing and nature of improvements to Deer Valley Road are NOT within the City of Brentwood’s control, and as a result, this impact is conservatively determined to be significant and unavoidable.

So, as you can see, Antioch’s letter outlining their concerns basically gets shrugged off in the Final EIR rebuttal. It states the dangerous conditions this construction and its vehicles will add to Deer Valley Road, states that timing of funds to improve Deer Valley Road are unknown, and that improvements to Deer Valley Road are outside of the City’s jurisdiction.

The information above is in addition to the fact that 10,000 Antioch voters backed a permanent ULL qualifying an Initiative last year, in addition to the Antioch City Council adopting their Initiative in August 2018 (a vote of the people ordered by a Judge for 11/3/20 is still in appeal), in addition to an MOU that is in force between Antioch & Brentwood that the parcel is off limits through 2022, in addition to Antioch’s General Plan saying they will not pursue land outside their ULL, and in addition to Antioch’s General Plan clause outlining 428 housing units if they ever do ever pursue the parcel, which they aren’t.

Vote No on Measure L – it’s not the right plan for Brentwood, and its obvious that the Deer Valley corridor was never meant nor is it prepared for this massive development. This is our position, as well as the City of Antioch’s.


November 1, 2019

Good morning friends and neighbors,
As we approach a landmark vote on Tuesday, November 5th on Measure L, I wanted to give you some recent housing numbers. Mr. Elliott of Summerset has called the No on Measure L supporters Nimbys – we’ve got ours so we are squelching housing opportunities. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

So, let’s think examine this. Brentwood has a General Plan through 2035. This GP plans for the eventual building of 2,700 single family homes, and 5,300 multi-unit housing types. We currently have 28 housing projects in various stages of planning or construction. Then, there are the houses for sale in town – 197, with 26% in the over 55 housing category, 52 – and these numbers are as we approach the holidays which we know is not the most opportune time to list your home.

The Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) dictates to City’s what housing they are required to build, assuring housing opportunities keep up with demand in the Bay Area. They base their numbers on various factors, especially as it relates to available nearby jobs and transit. East Contra Costa County has a dismal jobs opportunity number, offering only 4 jobs for every 10 residents in the workforce. Therefore, ABAG’s number required for Brentwood was 760 housing units of various types for the years 2014-2022; and yet, Brentwood has already built 1,845. Brentwood has built only 7 of the low to very low income housing, and overbuilt in the moderate category, 1,436. Don’t you believe A) this is plenty of opportunity; and B) this is what has gotten us into the mess of dire fire/emergency service levels, no attention to economic growth to carry Brentwood into the funding future, more traffic and congestion, over-crowded schools – you name it?

Brentwood already has great opportunities for our active adults, with 3,113 over 55 housing units in Brentwood, with another 299 in the queue. Antioch is ready to break ground on not 1, but 2 over 55 active adult communities.

Don’t let the constant bombardment of flyers, e-mails, calls and doorknockers from the proponents of Measure L sway you. We all know we MUST concentrate on projects, both residential and commercial, inside our City limits before we even consider busting through your Urban Limit Line and for what, more housing and construction for upwards of 20 years. How do we yet know the effects of the current projects? Exactly, so why would we expand outward now? All the other plans in our City are over the same 15-20 year period. How about we concentrate our efforts on PA-1 below Home Depot and on both sides of the Bypass for commercial, retail and jobs development? I might mention, the PA-1 plan also contains around 2,041 housing units.

GBN Partners has poured $1.2 million dollars into Measure L, and that’s only through 10/24/19. Wow. The Brentwood Alliance Against Measure L; major funding from the Northern California Carpenters Regional Council (NCCRC) has spent $17,732. Yes, the NCCRC contributed a generous $20,000 to our campaign. When they met with us, they told us their reasoning for contributing to our No on Measure L campaign was when people in the Bay Area pay for transportation and infrastructure taxes, like Measure J, these same taxpayers take offense to cities who continue to add to traffic and congestion while adding no viable jobs, that’s right – by irresponsible development and expansion. Ya think? Thank you NCCRC! Check out all the campaign finance reports on the City of Brentwood website

This sickening effort trying to convince us to lower our quality of life to increase their quality of life is selfish and self-serving. Sure we all bought houses here – we wanted a nicer house, but we also wanted a nicer community, a robust, inviting and top-notch place to live and raise our families. The land barons who in years past sold their land so we could live here are now creating the miserable City we moved here to escape. Everyone is saying we need more restaurants, we need more shopping, we need JOBS in this City, so why would we vote to approve yet another massive housing project in the most inappropriate location?

We need to get back to the table with a City-run process to guide the Community Buildout Plan that was in progress earlier this year before GBN partners leap-frogged it with this ballot Measure. It’s a process where ALL stakeholders – landowners, business owners, and residents – get a chair at the table to help plan how our City can and will flourish in the future.

Vote NO on Measure L for a better plan for SPA2, if and when we need it. Let’s keep Brentwood the jewel of East Contra Costa County.


October 28, 2019

Good evening friends and neighbors. I start by saying that my thoughts are with all those effected by the fires the past 2 days. The wind is stronger than I ever remember. My niece has been evacuated from Windsor again for the 2nd time in 2 years; so scary. Our hearts are with everyone, we hope losses are minimal, and we will certainly be there to come to the aid of anyone who needs it, with whatever they may need.

So, updates to the No on Measure L campaign in the final 2 weeks to victory in the November 5th Special Election.

This week, I participated in phone banking for the first time. The Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, a major sponsor for our campaign, hosted us at their Carpenters Union Local 152 offices in Martinez for what proved to be a wonderfully positive exercise! Their automated computer system calls registered voters, and we are able to introduce ourselves and get the opposition to Measure L greeting and vital messages to them. We were overwhelmingly met with a positive response, and found many, many Brentwood voters reporting they have already voted, or are voting No on Measure L. We will continue this volunteer effort into next week. If you should receive a call, please let us know we have your support, or engage us in an important conversation about Measure L for more information.

This ballot Measure is so important to Brentwood – it’s a turning point for our City. The question remains do you let a developer dictate a plan that defies common sense and quadruples the density of housing planned for SPA2, advances housing before vital services, disregards the thousands of commuters battling our roadways daily for viable work, inundates western Brentwood with years and years of construction, and compromises the very core of what we wanted to be – a town that was to be the jewel of far East Contra Costa County, true to its agricultural heritage, nurturing surrounding ag cores and farmland, while providing enough housing, job opportunities and amenities to keep this town viable and enjoyable. We have the plans to do just this – within our borders. There is no reason to expand outward now, and frankly, it is flat-out irresponsible to do so.

Our campaign received a new set of 100 lawn signs, and distributed another 46 since Friday. To date, we have given out 646 lawn signs! This is key as it drives the conversation with your neighbors, and let’s everyone know how strong the No on Measure L effort is. Get ‘um while they’re hot – we only have 54 left! We deliver, so just text me on 925-325-8439, or use the Request a Sign feature on our website, www.BetterBrentwood.com .

Our 2nd campaign finance reports were due by 5pm on Thursday, October 24. The Brentwood Alliance Against Measure L; major funding from the Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, filed on time, and reported we’ve spent $17,731.19 through 10/19/19. While our opponents newest report has yet to be revealed, they have spent $724,000 through 9/21/19. Through the generous donations from our major donor, The Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, and all of our amazing individual donors, we have made an incredible impact – we are confident we will prevail in rejecting Measure L. We assure you we have been prudent and respectful of all our monetary support, and are so thankful for your donations. All campaign finance reports are available for review under the Measure L section of the City of Brentwood’s website.

I also wish to thank everyone for all their media posts supporting the No on Measure L message, debunking much of the campaign rhetoric that big money can buy, constantly referring everyone to actual reports, the EIR and facts of this Measure’s adverse impacts. In addition, there are all the volunteers putting in countless hours to educate our residents on policy, procedure and Initiative law, being at the Farmer’s Market every weekend, distributing flyers and doorhangers, ordering lawn signs, sign-waving at the corners, attending and talking at meetings, presentations and special events, and so much more that will prove to be the authentic, Brentwood spirit that will uphold our City’s original plans, sensible plans and defend its quality of life for generations to come.

The question remains do we want to become like every other miserable city in the Bay Area with congestion, traffic, life-threatening fire and EMS services, lack of jobs, lack-luster retail, restaurants and amenities, and overcrowded schools, or are we going to fight for a better future that sets us apart from the rest? The answer lies in rejecting Measure L – it’s neither the right plan, nor the right time to move our Urban Limit Line thereby compromising Brentwood’s future as the jewel of Bay Area. Thanks for all your support!


October 25, 2019

Good day friends and neighbors, over the past week, many posters on social media are questioning facts and figures by the folks who support No on Measure L.

I assure you, all of our statements, for instance in our Ballot Arguments, and the numbers contained therein such as in daily car trips, intersections made unacceptable, etc. have been taken directly from the report ordered by our City Council, the 9212 Report.

The daily car trips at buildout is 14,970; with 6,990 of those daily car trips attributable to the senior housing component. Whether or not these cars are “going into town” as quoted by Bob Nunn makes no difference. The fact remains these are the projected numbers of additional cars on the roads around this monstrous development, such as Balfour and Deer Valley Road. No road is changing east of West Country Club/American Avenue, so you can just imagine what Balfour to East Country Club, to John Muir Parkway, to Cortona, etc. will look like if you approve this housing development. It took me 3 signal lights to get from American Avenue to East Country Club at 3:35pm the other day.

There was a resident questioning the fact that our insurance rates have risen 198.2% during the years 2014-2017, and that may not have been in Brentwood. From the ECCFPD Board of Directors Resolution No. 2017-19, in response to a Contra Costa County Grand Jury investigation, it so states that public commenters who shared at District Board Meetings were seeing insurance costs increase by this amount. There it is, in writing. It’s within our Fire District. All the other responses to the Grand Jury testimony Resolution can be found at this link, and there are other alarming answers by our ECCFPD, such as response times: 

There was a startling announcement in the Board Meeting held July 10 where staff reported that the unavailable time for the months of April – June had increased 29%, a total of 96 hours and 48 minutes where no help was in route, and there were 48 emergency calls during this same period. How would you like to be the one waiting on help, and your call went unanswered?

This is just the beginning of several posts I will make in the days leading up to one of the most important elections, and turning points in Brentwood’s history. We need to reject Measure L and have our City bring all stakeholders in Brentwood to the table to guide us into the future, and not buy one developers plan. If and when we decide we need to incorporate SPA2 into our City, there is a smaller, better, less invasive plan in our own 2014 General Plan, it’s the 583 ranchette estates and very low density housing. Measure L is the wrong plan and it’s the wrong time, and I know thousands of Brentwood voters feel the same way.


Say No to Sprawl by Voting No on Measure L

Say No to Sprawl by Voting No on Measure L by Greenbelt Alliance

Critical open space land is at risk of being lost to sprawl development just outside the city of Brentwood in eastern Contra Costa County.

Developer Blackhawk Nunn Partners has sidestepped the community planning process, drafting a 193-page ballot measure that would undermine the city’s long-standing environmental protections and approve new development rules to allow the company to build thousands of housing units on protected lands.  

Blackhawk Nunn’s Measure L breaks the city’s voter-approved Urban Limit Line that provides a clear boundary beyond which major development isn’t allowed. It would also re-write the city’s General Plan to approve a major subdivision with 2,400 housing units on 800 acres of rolling hills just west of town. 

Measure L has serious repercussions for Brentwood’s quality of life and environment, including:

  • Paving over rich agricultural land and critical habitat for wildlife
  • Straining limited local drinking water supplies
  • Exacerbating the city’s infamous traffic congestion
  • Increasing air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions

This is the third time that sprawl developers have tried to convince Brentwood voters to allow development on open space lands outside the city’s boundaries since 2005. Each time, the voters have rejected these cynical ploys and stood up for growing smartly—within city boundaries and not on precious open space land. Enough is enough.

Say no to this destructive development by voting NO on Measure L!

Take Action!

Add your name to our petition to show your support for the preservation of critical open space lands in Brentwood.

Questions about Brentwood’s Measure L? Contact us today!

Will Antioch take the land if Brentwood does not pass Measure L?


We know this because of the events of last summer, when Antioch voters pushed back on the development of thousands of houses in the nearby Sand Creek Focus Area in Antioch. To stop the development, the “Let Antioch Voters Decide” initiative was put forward. 10,000 Antioch voters signed the petition, and the Antioch city council subsequently adopted their residents will, and passed the initiative into law.

Unfortunately, their city council kind of made a mess of things, also approving another measure that did allow one project by Richland that would otherwise have been excluded by the “Let Antioch Voters Decide” initiative. So, a suit was filed by the other developers who also want to build in the area, and now the “Let Antioch Voters Decide” initiative seems headed to the November 2020 ballot. The City of Antioch is still pursuing an appeal to this ruling as reported in a news article dated August 6, 2019. If they win the appeal, then the law could stand and not need a new vote.

In a summary posted by the group supporting the “Let Antioch Voters Decide” initiative, they explain it does four things:

  • Designates 1800 acres west of Deer Valley Road as the Initiative Area and zones it Rural Residential, Agriculture and Open Space.
  • Limits development in the Sand Creek area between Kaiser Hospital and Black Diamond Mines, where the city is proposing thousands of houses.
  • Requires Antioch Voter approval to allow more intensive development. It Lets Antioch Voters Decide if they want to allow bigger developments.
  • Permanently Requires Voter Approval Of Amendments To The Urban Limit Line. The current Antioch Urban Limit Line is only voter approved until December 2020. Our measure would continue to require voter approval for any changes.

Note that last one about permanently protecting the ULL. It is a key provision in this initiative, and Antioch voters seem sure to pass it. Consider that in the last Antioch City Council election only 30,326 votes were cast, and that 10,000 petition signature number becomes very significant. “Let Antioch Voters Decide” would have only needed 15,164 in the last election if the same number of people voted on it as voted on the City Council election. Granted 2020 is a presidential election year and Antioch population has gone up some, but still, with that much of a head start, it is hard to see how the “Let Antioch Voters Decide” initiative would fail. Also, in that same article from August 6, Save Mount Diablo, who helped the residents qualify the Initiative in 2018, vows to educate the public to get this passed.

Way back in 2010, when Measure F was brought to Brentwood to allow development of the land just south of the Measure L area, that would have put houses all around and behind Heritage High and Adams Middle Schools, this same threat was proclaimed loudly and with certain conviction. Pass Measure F, or Antioch will surely and certainly take that land. It never happened. It was never going to happen. Past votes and actions by both Brentwood and Antioch residents and voters continue to discredit this baseless threat.

Ask yourself who is spearheading this Measure L initiative. Is it Antioch or is it wealthy developers who pay for petition-gatherers, who pay for elections, who pay for focus groups to figure out what buzz words they need to print, racking up costs to the tune of $645,000? The proponents of Measure L always tell us that Antioch “will” take the land. But if anyone says Antioch will not take it, they always switch to saying they “can” take it or “it is possible they might” take it. And anything is possible. A meteor can come crashing out of the sky, through your roof, and land in your living room. If the proponents want to say that Antioch taking this land is as likely as a meteor landing in your living room, then maybe we would concede that point. But realistically, a meteor will never land in your living room, and Antioch can’t just take this land if Measure L is defeated. Contrary to the message they keep conveying, we do have other options, and the sky is not falling.


October 11, 2019

Happy glorious Fall Friday everyone! The weather is awesome, and trees are turning – it’s a great day to save Brentwood’s charm!

It’s been some time since I posted, but so much going on! I had a wonderful trip to Boston area, staying in Ipswich – what a lovely part of the country – lots of space around the homes, grasslands, waterways and the Atlantic, every home painted to perfection, great, clean transportation options with their trains into Boston from the countryside for commuters and pleasure-seekers, a walkable City with lots of history – what an awesome concept, right?

So back to business, and updates to the No on Measure L campaign! We have strong opposition, and I’m delivering our 534th No on Measure L lawn sign today! We have large 4’x4′ signs displayed by our friends and county jurisdiction supporters’ properties on Marsh Creek Road, Deer Valley road and Walnut, with more on the way. The Carpenter’s Local 152 helped us deliver close to 18,000 doorhangers throughout our Town – thank you Carpenter’s! If you haven’t received a doorhanger, which can also be used to hang on your rearview mirror when parked at stores & restaurants, please give us a holler on the Gmail; the maps got a little wonky, so we want to assure everyone gets one. Also, order your signs on the GMail too – we deliver daily! Thanks for your support.

The campaign finance reports are on the City’s website, with our proponents filing theirs one day late (?!). You can review ours, and their funding and expenditures through 9/21/19. Quite eye-opening information, the difference between the two sides to Measure L.

YOUR BALLOTS ARE IN YOUR MAIL! Vote, vote, vote as soon as possible! If you haven’t registered to vote, you have until October 21st to do so, so don’t procrastinate. We can make a difference in this election, and I want to reject this Measure L for a better plan, a Brentwood residents plan guided by our town’s needs and wants, when we need to and when we have the jobs and services to support this City. No on Measure L! Also, view my segment taped for the County Elections Office about Measure L moderated by Bob Butler here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LuUBXbaAdWE

We have a Community Meeting scheduled next week: WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 16th, 6pm-8pm, Mountain Mike’s, 380 West Country Club, Brentwood. Come drop in to get more information, strategize on volunteer opportunities, get your lawn signs, get your door hangers!

We will be making a presentation at the Shadow Lakes Homeowners Association Meeting, Thursday, October 17th, 6:30pm-8:30pm, Community Center, 35 Oak Street, 2nd floor, Conference Room B. GBN Partners will also present. If you are allowed to attend as part of Shadow Lakes HOA, I wouldn’t miss this one.

Anyway, I’d better sign-off for today. Catch the Alliance at the Farmer’s Market tomorrow morn, 9am-11am, and every Saturday. Try to attend our Community Meeting so we can mobilize in the last 3 weeks to victory! Have a great day!