Dennis Pocekay 2018 City Council Candidate

We sent a questionnaire to each of the 2018 mayoral and city council candidates.  The questionnaire was very specific about the Scott Ranch/Davidon proposal and the future of the land at Windsor and D Street.


Petaluma City Council Candidate
Dennis Pocekay
Response


First, let me note that if I am elected and this issue comes before the council, it is quite possible that I would be forced to RECUSE myself.  I’m not sure, but it may require a tape measure to be sure whether I am inside or outside of 500 feet from the edge of the development.  For now, I will answer as if I am NOT recused.


Question:
What role does a city council member have in protecting community character and addressing issues such as traffic circulation? 

The city council as a whole, along with the planning commission, is responsible for protecting the character of the community and for addressing issues with traffic circulation.  Each council member, therefore, has a role in these responsibilities.


Too often Petaluma’s traffic problems are concentrated into Rainier as a solution.
Question:
What steps would you take to solve traffic congestion on Windsor, D Street, and adjoining streets now that commuters are using these streets to avoid 101 traffic?

Completion of Rainier will help with traffic congestion in this area, but not for 4-8 years, and not in the seeable future if the gas tax is repealed this November.  We must begin to look at other measures, such as traffic engineering, stoplight timing, improved public transit, car/vanpools, and improved/safer bike routes throughout our city.  We must find ways to incentivize/nudge employers and employees in these directions.  All of these measures, if successful, will lead to fewer people avoiding Hwy 101.


Question:
What is the number of homes (if any) that you think should be built on this property?

Based on the information currently available, I do not think that any homes should be built on this property.


Question:
Since 44 acres of the 58 acres will become part of Putnam Park, where on the remaining 14 acres should the 28 homes be located? 

If 28 homes are to be built, as many as possible should be placed NORTH of Windsor Dr.  In my opinion, those that cannot be sited north of Windsor Dr are best placed at the NE corner of the property south of Windsor Dr.

 

Question:
Given that Petaluma is already critically short of police, fire, and first responders, would the Davidon development help solve this problem? How would you solve this problem?

The Davidon development (28-home plan) would generate impact fees in the range of 1.5 million dollars.  Any amount can help with our police and fire needs, but this is far short of what is needed to solve the problem.  I believe that the solution to this problem, and to balancing our budget and building affordable housing, will require several new revenue streams, possibly including a cannabis dispensary, partial repurposing of the fairgrounds, and a new tax or bond issue.

 

Question:
Are there net fiscal benefits to the proposed Davidon project? What are the potential costs to the city?

The GROSS fiscal benefits are described above.  Calculation of NET fiscal benefits must consider costs to the city, including relocation of the red-legged frog and increased traffic in an area that is already often overwhelmed with automobiles.

 

Preliminary project plans show that four homes will be located within the red-legged frog habitat.
Question:  Should the Council permit Davidon to build on the portion of the land that is habitat for the threatened red-legged frog, which would mean its death or removal or could these houses be relocated to avoid this significant impact?

I believe that these houses can be relocated, or the lots purchased with donated funds to reduce the number of homes to 23.




Please contact Dennis Pocekay with any questions about these statements:
dpocekay@gmail.com