The purpose of this writing is not to start a series of conversations once again debating the justification of a new Costco in Pleasanton. Most residents are aware of the long history and events leading up to the final resolution to finally bring Costco to Pleasanton and meet the wishes of the majority of the people.
However, since Matt Sullivan was granted a featured article in the Opinion section of the Pleasanton Weekly on Aug. 19, I felt it necessary to voice a counter-opinion relative to his thoughts.
In his article, Matt pointed out that the current estimated cost of the traffic mitigation infrastructure had escalated to $34 million from $21 million. This reflects the cost of inflation since the original proposal date, something we are all currently challenged with.
Opposition to the Johnson Drive Economic Development Zone project in 2016 resulted in Measure MM, which the citizens of Pleasanton solidly voted against in favor of developing Costco and the other proposed businesses. The additional lawsuits initiated by Matt Sullivan and the small group that he led, in an attempt to overrule the vote of the people on Measure MM, caused substantial delays and additional costs to the project.
In addition, the delays in opening Costco and the other proposed developments on the site have cost the city and Pleasanton residents the benefits of substantial tax revenue that would have been generated by an earlier opening date. This revenue could have been used to fund any number of additional projects benefiting the people of our city. A rough estimate is that it could have been approximately $2 million per year following the opening of the businesses.
Assuming that Costco and the other businesses could have opened in 2020, that means that the potential cost to the city in infrastructure and lost tax revenue has been approximately $17 million. Matt Sullivan and his group of dissenters are responsible for this.
Matt Sullivan has contributed to the early development of Pleasanton having served on the Pleasanton City Council and the Pleasanton Planning Commission and for that he is to be thanked. However, he has been on the wrong side of this issue from the start and he and his followers have cost the residents tax revenue and lost opportunities for consumers by not allowing this project to move forward as desired by the people of Pleasanton.
Thanks to the current Mayor and City Council members for staying the course in delivering the project to the people.
Editor's note: Tom Murphy and his wife have lived in Pleasanton for 37 years and have enjoyed the benefits of Pleasanton planned development. They, along with many other residents, say they have been waiting too long for the benefits from Costco coming to Pleasanton. He believes that Costco is an American business success story and that it will be a positive addition to the Pleasanton business community.