News

Editorial: Vote Arnerich, Morgan, Fong for Danville Town Council

It's a crowded field of candidates for the Danville Town Council election this November with nine candidates -- including two incumbents -- competing for three at-large council seats.

Danville is well-managed, with a balanced budget and no unfunded liability, and a lot of the credit goes toward its current leadership.

Care must be taken, though, to maintain this envious position in the face of a global pandemic, economic downturn, struggling small businesses and a state government that demands building affordable housing. Danville needs leaders who know what they are doing now more than ever, which is why we are endorsing incumbents Newell Arnerich and Renee Morgan.

To call Arnerich’s experience extensive would be an understatement. His history of civic involvement stretches back more than 30 years as he served on the town's Design Review Board and Planning Commission prior to his first election to the council. That experience is going to be desperately needed to get through the many crises that will likely continue for several years. As the longest-serving council member, Arnerich is a knowledgeable leader who has proven he is not afraid to make controversial decisions that are in the town's best interest.

Morgan, a thoughtful council member with solid civic experience, also deserves another term. She served on the Danville Planning Commission, Danville Historic Design Review Committee and Danville Heritage Resource Commission prior to her election to the council eight years ago. Among other accomplishments during her time on these committees, Morgan helped update two General Plans for the town. She is also a strong advocate for regional cooperation, serving on a variety of regional committees and commissions.

What's local journalism worth to you?

Support DanvilleSanRamon.com for as little as $5/month.

Learn more

This is an unprecedented election in an unprecedented time. Very rarely do Danville voters see multiple names other than incumbents on the ballot, and now they have seven new candidates to choose from. With Councilwoman Lisa Blackwell announcing she would not run for re-election, there will be at least one new person on the five-person council come December.

For this vacancy, voters should choose current Senior Advisory Commissioner Dave Fong.

Fong has served on state and local committees, and has good relationships with sitting council members and town staff. He should be able to hit the ground running on day one without much of a learning curve. In addition to his role on the town’s Senior Advisory Commission, Fong has also served on a number of education and health committees. We also like that he has experience on the state level as a former appointed member of the California State Board of Pharmacy.

Candidate Turner Stanton also has experience serving on local committees, most recently as a member of the Recover Danville Alliance -- which he joined after independently starting his own strategies to help local businesses reopen amid the pandemic.

Stanton would bring change to the council which, in different circumstances, might be valuable. However, there is no need for change and we feel the town will benefit by staying the current course. A vote for Fong really is a vote for continuity. He's repeatedly praised the council and has basically said he'd continue their current trends.

We commend Mohamed Elsherbini, Nasser Mirzai, PJ Shelton and Kevin Traylor for their willingness to serve, but they failed to distinguish themselves amid the crowded field. We would like to see them gain civic experience by serving on a town committee or commission and running for council again in the future.

Allen Timmons is a “no growth” candidate, which is unrealistic in the Bay Area. He has also repeatedly vocalized a desire to bring his conservative political views to the council. The Town Council is a non-partisan position for good reason; bringing political views to the forefront will only bring divisiveness to the town.

Vote for incumbents Newell Arnerich and Renee Morgan and newcomer Dave Fong for Danville Town Council.

Stay informed

Get daily headlines sent straight to your inbox.

Sign up

Follow DanvilleSanRamon.com on Twitter @DanvilleSanRamo, Facebook and on Instagram @ for breaking news, local events, photos, videos and more.

Editorial: Vote Arnerich, Morgan, Fong for Danville Town Council

by /

Uploaded: Tue, Oct 13, 2020, 9:34 pm

It's a crowded field of candidates for the Danville Town Council election this November with nine candidates -- including two incumbents -- competing for three at-large council seats.

Danville is well-managed, with a balanced budget and no unfunded liability, and a lot of the credit goes toward its current leadership.

Care must be taken, though, to maintain this envious position in the face of a global pandemic, economic downturn, struggling small businesses and a state government that demands building affordable housing. Danville needs leaders who know what they are doing now more than ever, which is why we are endorsing incumbents Newell Arnerich and Renee Morgan.

To call Arnerich’s experience extensive would be an understatement. His history of civic involvement stretches back more than 30 years as he served on the town's Design Review Board and Planning Commission prior to his first election to the council. That experience is going to be desperately needed to get through the many crises that will likely continue for several years. As the longest-serving council member, Arnerich is a knowledgeable leader who has proven he is not afraid to make controversial decisions that are in the town's best interest.

Morgan, a thoughtful council member with solid civic experience, also deserves another term. She served on the Danville Planning Commission, Danville Historic Design Review Committee and Danville Heritage Resource Commission prior to her election to the council eight years ago. Among other accomplishments during her time on these committees, Morgan helped update two General Plans for the town. She is also a strong advocate for regional cooperation, serving on a variety of regional committees and commissions.

This is an unprecedented election in an unprecedented time. Very rarely do Danville voters see multiple names other than incumbents on the ballot, and now they have seven new candidates to choose from. With Councilwoman Lisa Blackwell announcing she would not run for re-election, there will be at least one new person on the five-person council come December.

For this vacancy, voters should choose current Senior Advisory Commissioner Dave Fong.

Fong has served on state and local committees, and has good relationships with sitting council members and town staff. He should be able to hit the ground running on day one without much of a learning curve. In addition to his role on the town’s Senior Advisory Commission, Fong has also served on a number of education and health committees. We also like that he has experience on the state level as a former appointed member of the California State Board of Pharmacy.

Candidate Turner Stanton also has experience serving on local committees, most recently as a member of the Recover Danville Alliance -- which he joined after independently starting his own strategies to help local businesses reopen amid the pandemic.

Stanton would bring change to the council which, in different circumstances, might be valuable. However, there is no need for change and we feel the town will benefit by staying the current course. A vote for Fong really is a vote for continuity. He's repeatedly praised the council and has basically said he'd continue their current trends.

We commend Mohamed Elsherbini, Nasser Mirzai, PJ Shelton and Kevin Traylor for their willingness to serve, but they failed to distinguish themselves amid the crowded field. We would like to see them gain civic experience by serving on a town committee or commission and running for council again in the future.

Allen Timmons is a “no growth” candidate, which is unrealistic in the Bay Area. He has also repeatedly vocalized a desire to bring his conservative political views to the council. The Town Council is a non-partisan position for good reason; bringing political views to the forefront will only bring divisiveness to the town.

Vote for incumbents Newell Arnerich and Renee Morgan and newcomer Dave Fong for Danville Town Council.

Comments

Danville
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 16, 2020 at 1:09 pm
Danville, Danville
Registered user
on Oct 16, 2020 at 1:09 pm
16 people like this

So, the three candidates who have spent a great deal of money running paid ads in your publication are the three candidates you are supporting. What a surprise! Don't you think maybe you should have mentioned that fact in your so-called "editorial"?

I assume since you attacked Mr. Timmons for noting his political views in running for a non-partisan position, you are going to equally attack Shelley Clark who is running for our local school district stressing she is endorsed by the Contra Costa County Democratic Party and the State of California Democratic Party?


Dirty Politics
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 16, 2020 at 9:38 pm
Dirty Politics , Danville
Registered user
on Oct 16, 2020 at 9:38 pm
14 people like this

How can we trust any of the city officials in our "small town" when current councilman is the campaign manager for the other city councilman ? When our "news" writers are just another paid advertising agency? when "we the people" have no voice?
You want it this way? good luck ..


Danville
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 21, 2020 at 7:31 am
Danville, Danville
Registered user
on Oct 21, 2020 at 7:31 am
13 people like this

This publication notes it is endorsing Mr. Arnerich, who has been on the Town Council for over 20 years, because "Danville needs leaders who know what they are doing now more than ever". However, for our local school board, this publication notes they are endorsing Ms.Clark, and not the incumbent Mr. Marvel who has served on our school board for 20 years, because we need "fresh new leadership", even arguing that we should consider term limits on our local candidates.

This publication also criticizes Mr. Timmons, who is running for Town Council, for bringing politics into the election, but then endorses Ms. Clark who is running for our school board who actually stresses on her campaign brochures that she is endorsed by the California Democratic Party and the Contra Costa County Democratic Party.

This publication also failed to note that the three candidates they endorse for Town Council were the three candidates who spent a great deal of money buying ads in this same publication.

This is exactly why polls confirm that the public no longer has trust in the media, and has lost credibility with the voters.

I am not being "snarky", just stating facts.

When deciding who to vote for, do not let the biased media's so-called endorsement play any role in your decision, and if anything, vote against their recommendations, and show the media that you are tired of their unfair prejudice and biased reporting.


Gina M Channell, Publisher
Registered user
San Ramon
on Oct 23, 2020 at 8:50 am
Gina M Channell, Publisher, San Ramon
Registered user
on Oct 23, 2020 at 8:50 am
4 people like this

@Danville — two totally different situations. The Town of Danville is fiscally sound and well managed. The SRVUSD, in our opinion, is not.

When making decisions on who to vote for, you should take a holistic approach, considering not just the candidates but also the history of the board and current circumstances.

A “one-size-fits-all “ (you said this for one group and not the other) approach is too simplistic and doesn’t work when making important decisions.


Becky Bhatt
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 23, 2020 at 9:20 am
Becky Bhatt, Danville
Registered user
on Oct 23, 2020 at 9:20 am
14 people like this

I have already voted, and I decided for town council I would not vote for any incumbents. The last few years have shown there is little transparency and I feel we need some fresh perspectives.


Danville
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 23, 2020 at 9:41 am
Danville, Danville
Registered user
on Oct 23, 2020 at 9:41 am
8 people like this

Gina: So your response to me pointing out the numerous inconsistencies in your "editorial" is that the school district is not "fiscally sound". But yet you endorse Ms.Clark, who is supported by the teachers union! How is putting someone endorsed by the teachers union going to make the school district "fiscally sound"? Do you think the teachers union supports Ms. Clark because she is going to stand up to them at the bargaining table, and keep our district "fiscally sound"?

Mr.Marvel, the incumbent, who has served the school district for 20 years, has a record of being independent, and carefully balancing the needs of the students, teachers, and parents. If you actually believed the school district was not "fiscally sound", you would support Mr. Marvel, not someone endorsed by the teachers union.

Again, facts, not being "snarky".

Also interesting you played the "holistic card". Usually, when someone is confronted by inconsistent facts and logical problems with an argument, they will cling to the "holistic card", which is a nicer way of saying, "you caught me in applying different standards due to my bias".


Gina M Channell, Publisher
Registered user
San Ramon
on Oct 24, 2020 at 8:39 am
Gina M Channell, Publisher, San Ramon
Registered user
on Oct 24, 2020 at 8:39 am
5 people like this

@Danville, speaking of support for teachers union, please review the current boards record with the teachers union — particularly the last year and with the current reopening situation. Also Clark is not part of the board that bowed to the union and did not discipline a PE teacher who allowed a child to die in his class. As for fiscal responsibility, please review superintendent Rick Schmitt’s compensation and how he was allowed to “pension spike” before retiring.


Danville
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 26, 2020 at 7:05 am
Danville, Danville
Registered user
on Oct 26, 2020 at 7:05 am
8 people like this

Gina: The only reason the Board could not fire that terrible P.E. teacher responsible for the poor boy's death was because of the protection given to him by the teachers union. Why don't you ask Ms. Clark, who the teachers union supports in this election, if she will agree to roll back the protections given to teachers facing termination if she is elected? Do you honestly think the teachers union would support a candidate if she agreed to roll back protections from termination? By electing Ms. Clark, you are guaranteeing that more teachers, like the P.E. teacher responsible for the boy's death, will not be able to be terminated, due to protections from the teachers union.

By the way, I see that the three candidates your publication supports in the town council race, are still running paid ads in your publication. Care to disclose to your readers how much money the candidates that you support in the town council race have paid you?


Neighbor
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 26, 2020 at 9:26 am
Neighbor, Danville
Registered user
on Oct 26, 2020 at 9:26 am
16 people like this

Arnerich, Morgan, and Fong are the only 3 candidates who have paid DanvilleSanRamon.com for advertising. Each campaign contributed $1105 to Embarcadero Publishing, the parent company of DanvilleSanramon. It is a shame that this advertisement is portrayed as independent journalism.

Campaign donations and expenditures are available for viewing here: Web Link


Gina M Channell, Publisher
Registered user
Danville
on Oct 27, 2020 at 8:18 am
Gina M Channell, Publisher, Danville
Registered user
on Oct 27, 2020 at 8:18 am
2 people like this

Our editorial board selected the candidates with the most experience. Some candidates had absolutely no civic experience and/or have never been to a council meeting. We endorsed the people who could best lead into the future from day one --- and not have to be taught Robert's Rules or the Brown Act before they get to the dais.

Take a look at the site and I'm sure you will find candidates who know voters look to us as a credible site and a good way to get their message to our readers but we didn't endorse.

For the person / people who are commenting here questioning our journalistic integrity -- specifically a candidate we didn't endorse -- it's sour grapes.


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Post a comment

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