Letters: Need answers from the City, Council on Pocket H’Art Park

Support Local Journalism

A Winters Express Letter to the Editor

Richard Kleeburg gets right to the point in his column “Pity the Poor Pocket Park” in the Winters Express on Jan. 18, 2023 on page B7. He outlines questions that need to be answered truthfully by the City Council and the City Manager and that range far beyond the Park.

1. Is the City exempt from its own policies regarding regulations and specifications demanded by the Planning Commission and Planning Department for new construction?

2. How can the City claim to not know the size and extent of the PG&E transformer box at the north end of the park in 2022 when they directed the citizens’ group making the plans for the Pocket H’Art Park to include it with specific dimensions in the plans that were made public in 2021?

3. How can the City ignore the legal document for the sale of the lot that states the condition of the sale is for the City’s cooperation with a citizens group to design and install an Art Park including gardens, trees, and art?

4. Why can the City not provide a copy of the document that was sent in place of the Parks and Recreation Grant that the City Council voted unanimously to submit in January 2022?

5. Why did the City wait to use the SACOG grant until December 2022, when it told the citizens group about it in November 2021? Why the rush job when there was over a year to plan and follow the City procedures?

6. What is the plan for the lot overall? Is what we see the final resolution and if not, what is? Transparency, please.

7. Why has the City not taken up the offer of pro bono buildable plans for the park that would save the City at least $25,000? Why not use a credible and knowledgeable architectural organization that has volunteered to produce what is needed to proceed?

8. Why did the City close down the donations that had resulted in over $30,000 toward the Art Park? Why did the City ignore and turn the fundraising and investors’ assistance away, refusing to bring it to public notice?

9. Why did the City have no interest in an MOU based on the one created by the city for Project Playground (PP), when the City Manager says over and over what a great project PP was?

How many other issues have alternate realities from what is publicized by the City, and what is actually happening — in the negotiations for the Senior Center, with the developers, with individual permits, with small local businesses and with free speech? Finally, when answers are given, it has been my experience that the facts do not always match.

This lack of veracity in City business is pitting neighbor against neighbor. The park citizens coalition’s work of a year was dismissed with no recourse or reason, and action was taken in secrecy although the citizen effort was building good results. Portions of the business community are left out of decisions while other parts are benefitting from money realized by the City.

When the City Manager moves into a neighborhood, those welcoming her receive a letter from the City Attorney saying they must not bother her. Are these proper uses of our resources and services? So many questions need an answer. However, are the resulting answers going to be true to the facts? Many answers given have not been.

Pity the Winters community that is being misled, misinformed and underserved by its public servants.

Thank you, Richard, for your timely article.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Previous Article
soccer ball in goal with green backgroung

Soccer shuts down opponents

Next Article

Letters: Would like clarification

Related Posts