By Shelley Bachelder, San Juan Capistrano
In response to Sam Allevato’s letter posted Dec. 26, 2014:
Sam, why so much negativity? We’re trying to be a community here and you continue to try to divide us by belittling a large portion of residents who think differently than you.
I don’t see any “downward spiral of stagnation” in our town. When I go downtown, I see people everywhere, driving around, dining, shopping and walking. If you see that as a downward spiral of stagnation, then I would suggest moving to a different city—one that embraces traffic jams, stifling crowds and waiting in lines for movies and restaurants. That’s not us. It’s not what we want for this town.
If you find the existing vacant storefronts troubling, then work on helping businesses to fill them before introducing new development. The developments you are so vocal about supporting are the seemingly prestigious, high-profile projects that would get a lot of attention—for you. Why not shelve your ego for a change and actually listen to the people you are supposed to be serving? Yes, some of them support your views, but based on election results and petition signatures (to reverse the most recent actions of you and your former majority colleagues) it looks like most residents don’t support your views.
I don’t think you’re stupid, but I think you treat us as if we are. Having been on the City Council for so long, and being a former mayor, you must know that referendum petitions give the council the option to either reverse the approval of an action or put it to a vote. Even I know that—I read what I’m about to put my signature on. But no, you spin it to make it sound like our new Council majority is trying to pull a fast one. I don’t know the thinking of the council, but to me, since the referendum petition received almost twice the number of voter signatures needed in an abbreviated period of time, why would they waste our money to have us vote on it again? The signatures pretty well tell the story. With that kind of community response and the subsequent election results (replacing the two members who typically matched your votes) it should be clear to you how the majority of our residents feel. Sam, if you had been up for re-election, you’d be out now too.
So, please curb your divisive attitude. It’s time to play nice with your new teammates, start listening to the people and work on what’s actually good for our town.