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Letter: "Misrepresentation" from Toombs-Gillette Slate in Kensington

Leonard Schwartzburd of Kensington criticizes the candidate slate of Chuck Toombs and Patricia Gillette running for Kensington's governing board and faults the performance of the board majority that includes Toombs as board president.

To the Editor:

On Sept. 24th  I[1] called a property owner and asked if the Toombs-Gillette signs were put up with the owner’s permission and whether we could put our signs up.  The owner said that permission was given because they were told we want to end Kensington’s independent control of our police department. I told the owner they were lied to.  I sent them some of our literature and the July 11, 2011 article in the “Patch” about Chief of Police/General Manager Harman’s improper credit card use, another covered up affair, and his 17% raise, plus a $24,000 “gift of public funds,” shoved through by Toombs violating the KPPCSD clear Policies/Procedures.

Since when is a demand for fiscal responsibility somehow the same as opposing the independence of our Police Department.  On the contrary it reflects a desire to be able to continue to afford our independence.  Though some appear not to believe it, we support, appreciate and want to keep our line officers.  We know them and regardless of a couple of rough edges we want to keep them, and speaking for myself, to keep all of them.  With proper leadership they can be a great part of a great community.  All the pieces are here, we just need changes at the top.

The pattern of misrepresentation is consistent with what we have been seeing in this election and for years by both the Chief and Board Majority.  We are now told that crime is way up in Kensington. This comes ONLY after Cathie Kosel discovered the last crime statistics covering 08, 09 and 10 were grossly wrong.  The 3 years of false statics were used as a  justification for measure G. Where are the up to date statistics?   Toombs says the budget is balanced.  In reality,  GM/COP Harman is projecting a $109,849 shortfall for the current fiscal year.[2]  Where does the demand for more money stop and where does all the money go?  I have a clear memory from a formal meeting for the campaign to pass measure G.  We were told we needed a 10th officer to provide safety.  2 years later we still have only 9 officers.  The property tax payers by law are liable for the retirement commitments the Toombs Board 3 to 2 majority are making for us. Even more troubling is what happens if CalPERS defaults as they very well might. Then we tax payers will own all of the retirement liability for years to come.[3]  The potential liability is frightening. When property taxes go sharply up property values go down. Why are Toombs-Gillette and their active supporters spending so much money and using such tactics on a small community election like ours.

– Leonard Schwartzburd
   Kensington 

[1] Leonard Schwartzburd  (drlschwartzburd@gmail.com)

[2]  Page 57 of the February 2012 BOD package   http://www.kensingtoncalifornia.org/files/active/1/2012-03-08%20KPPCSD%20AGENDA.pdf

[3] Presently, according to a Dec. 2011 Stanford Study PERS HAS 100’s OF BILLIONS IN UNFUNDED OBLIGATIONS.  http://siepr.stanford.edu/system/files/shared/Nation_Statewide_Report.pdf

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El Cerrito Patch welcomes Letters to the Editor of up to 450 words from readers. Send them to elcerrito@patch.com. You can see past Letters to the Editor here.

anna shane October 15, 2012 at 04:01 PM
I hope this letter leads some residents to go beyond what is badly reported in the Outlook and find out more about how unwisely our majority Board has been spending our money and hiding it from us. I don't know why anyone would run for an unpaid extra job, but it is a real job, and should not a hobby or a place to enrich your own friends. The way things work, they can get away with it until they are stopped. Let's try something new, let's elect Cathie and Jim and allow Cathie to bring the accounting practices up to date and write normal and clear rules for our employees, so the Police Chief can't buy SUV's without a Board vote, or entertain on the Kensington credit card without a Board vote. Let the Board show in monthly minutes where our money is going. Let's have a policy that the Board becomes transparent and makes themselves accountable to the residents.
Kay Reed October 16, 2012 at 02:58 AM
[2] Page 57 of the February 2012 BOD package http://www.kensingtoncalifornia.org/files/active/1/2012-03-08%20KPPCSD%20AGENDA.pdf There is no page 57 in this package.
Leonard Schwartzburd, Ph.D. October 16, 2012 at 05:04 AM
Thank you Kay for pointing out the error. Go to the top of the page hand written as page 6 where it says Page 54 in the upper left side. You will find the reference to Pp 57 in the text below. Page 54 STAFF COMMENTS GMICOP Harman reviewed his estimates for revenue and expenses for the District's current fiscal year. He summarized his findings on Page 57 of the February 2012 BOD package which are that he is projecting a $109,849 shortfall for the current fiscal year (after receipt of the remaining $88,684 for the COPS grant). He said this shortfall is a function of the BOD'S decision to spend funds that were not budgeted for: 1)$65,000 for consulting expenses related to the park buildings and personnel investigations, 2) $23,100 in Community Center repairs, and 3)$15,000 in legal fees. GMICOP Harman said that the BOD has two options. One is to do a mid year budget adjustment now to include the three aforementioned items in the budget. The second option is for the BOD to do nothing but to know that it has been forewarned that the District is projected to end the fiscal year over budget.
LONG TIME RESIDENT November 03, 2012 at 05:11 PM
Are we paying for the police chief's personal defense counsel, Mike Rains? Who will tell us?
Leonard Schwartzburd, Ph.D. November 04, 2012 at 11:19 PM
This is the Joel Koosed, the Outlook editor, (better named the “Overlooked”) the propaganda organ of the Kensington Clique, of which Vida Dorroh is a prominent member, and where they give "truth" a bad name. I appreciate how discriminating your services are Mr. Koosed. His photo is on the web site. Joel Koosed “ Founded San Francisco Roommate Referral Service, Avenue Ballroom, Kicks Magazine, and The Meeting Game® Salon. Editor: Kensington Outlook ” Interested in new Meetup Groups about Drummer, dating, Dating and Relationships, Make New Friends, from all Walks of Life, The Over 40 Gang, Speed Dating, Meeting New People, Dating Women, Divorced, Widowed, Never Married, Singles, Single Professionals looking to Meet other Singles, Professional Singles, Single Parents, Hiking, Social Networking, Writers, Artists & Musicians, Creative Circle, creating a creative community, East Bay International Creative Community, East Bay Creative Community, Dinner Party, Singers & Songwriters, Performing Musicians, Dance, Drum Circle, Drumming, Recreational Drumming, Open Relationships, Polyamory, Alternative Lifestyles, Socializing with other Singles over 50., Show less... Albany, CA Sept 2012 http://www.meetup.com/members/6449445/

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