Korpus Has What it Takes
I have served on the Moraga Planning Commission with Kymberleigh Korpus since her appointment several months ago. Since joining the commission I have found her to be thoughtful, attentive to detail, and open to the views of her fellow commissioners. She frequently elevates the quality of both the discussions and decisions. She is always well prepared.
Conflict is to be expected when dealing with some of the complex and contentious issues before us. Each of us brings our own experience and style to the meetings. I believe some of the conflict that has resulted in apparent negative feelings towards Commissioner Korpus is a result of style differences. Her process is lawyerly and methodical. In planning meetings her questions build a structure of facts that moves toward an informed decision of the situation at hand. She often brings to light information that would otherwise not be explored without her persistence.
For the time she has been on the commission, I have found her to be intelligent and analytical; she does thorough research on the topics presented. Her legal training enables her ability to thoroughly analyze the decisions before us. She is aware of the potential loss of our semi-rural look, school over-crowding and increasing traffic congestion due to consequence of growth.
I support Kymberleigh Korpus in her run for Town Council. As a longtime Moragan she is committed to maintaining the quality of life and character of our town, which makes Moraga the special place it is.
I have written the above opinion as a private citizen.
- Suzanne D’Arcy -
Wykle, Korpus for Town Council
The Town of Moraga is losing its precious semi-rural character and quality of life. The upcoming Town Council election will determine the future of Moraga.
Graig Crossley, commendable as his many years of public service are, cannot be counted on to protect Moraga’s scenic corridors, hillsides, ridgelines and vistas from over-development. He fought against MOSO as a former council member, and he has not changed. He is part of Moraga’s old guard, which has given all it could and earned the right to retire.
Jeanette Fritzky, though apparently accomplished in her private and professional life, has no experience in Town planning and processes. She has yet to develop a voice of her own, and appears to take guidance and direction from Moraga’s old guard.
What is needed now is an infusion of new energy by those who have shown leadership and dedication to Moraga’s core values and principles. An ideal candidate would also demand greater governmental transparency and accountability, while encouraging a more openly participatory process.
Kymberleigh Korpus is such a candidate. As my colleague on the Moraga Planning Commission, I have seen her carefully examine facts, listen to and challenge opinions, and actively engage the public. She asks tough questions from all sides of the issues, and gives clear reasons for her decisions. Even though some Planning Commissioners have opposed her candidacy because they object to her willingness to question the merits of others’ decisions and to take a stand against the approval of the City Ventures project, they have come to grudgingly respect her due diligence and ability to identify important issues. She has demonstrated the needed experience and leadership, and needs your support to ensure the town adheres to its own policies and procedures, and is held accountable (e.g., Key Performance Indicator metrics).
Roger Wykle will bring his calm, capable, and creative analytical skills to enable the new solid majority in the Town Council to ensure Moraga’s bright future.
Thus, as a private citizen, I urge you to vote for Korpus and Wykle for Moraga Town Council.
- Ferenc Kovac -
I ask with great urgency that Moragans vote for Roger Wykle. I keep hearing so many comments about the size and density of projects that are being built now -- e.g., on Moraga Road across from the Rheem shopping center, and on Camino Ricardo (where the homes are now spilling over on the backside of that hill and can be seen from the Moraga shopping center). Don’t know about you, but the “story poles” that once were put up relating to these developments NEVER gave me any idea of the true mass of these buildings. And that’s only the visual impact. The traffic and other results of the fine folks who move in aren’t things that can be reversed. But the MANY future proposed developments are still in our hands right now with this election!
Roger Wykle was one of the few town council members who voted against these projects, who has championed a cautious approach to development, and who has stood firm for the protection of Moraga’s remaining open space. Because the town is about to adopt new rules governing hillside and ridgeline development, we absolutely need his voice on the next council to protect what remains of our semi-rural town.
And for those wondering, I believe Korpus and Fritzky also have histories that display thoughtful support for our Town in this way, and will receive my vote.
- Karen Chin -
On Nov. 8 I will be voting to elect Kymberleigh Korpus to the Moraga Town Council. Why? Because the Planning Process in our Town of Moraga has gone badly off-track. As a direct result, the Semi-rural character of Moraga and the scenic vistas that originally drew our family here 44 years ago are at serious risk of being irretrievably lost. Kymberleigh is committed to preventing that outcome. Her actions as a recently appointed member of our town’s Planning Commission offer clear proof of her intent, her talent and her ability to follow through on that commitment.
Evidence of the growing threat to our community’s character is readily visible. You see it in the densely packed, oversized houses being built across from Starbuck’s on Moraga Road. You can see the threat in the massive homes under construction off Camino Ricardo that are completely out-of-scale with the adjoining neighborhood and in the scarring that project’s extensive grading inflicted on the adjoining hillside. You see the risk to our community’s future in the City Ventures Townhomes project next to the firehouse that will seriously encroach on the Moraga Way Scenic Corridor. After that project’s story poles went up, over 1,500 Moragans signed a Referendum Petition requesting a public vote on that project. Instead, a majority of the current Town Council approved it. Be assured: Kymberleigh would not have approved the designs of those projects.
The preceding examples are only “tips of the iceberg.” Coming next is implementation of the Moraga Center Specific Plan. It envisions up to 630 additional units in the very heart of Moraga with densely packed buildings up to 45 feet tall and zero setbacks. The mass of those structures would render the Moraga we know and love unrecognizable. It would also further exacerbate the severe commute hours congestion we already experience on Moraga’s roadways. Kymberleigh wants the Town to reevaluate the MCSP before it is ever implemented.
If you love Moraga as I do and want to see our community’s Semi-rural character and beautiful vistas preserved, our best hope is to elect Kymberleigh Korpus to the Moraga Town Council.
- Dick Olsen -
Wykle, Korpus, Fritzky for Town Council
Moragans who want to protect remaining open space are urged vote for Wykle, Korpus, and Fritzky for Town Council.
This election comes at a key moment for Moraga: the council will soon decide on new development regulations that will determine the fate of vulnerable hills and ridgelines for decades. Adopting robust new protection measures requires a council able to act decisively despite strong developer opposition. Three candidates appear prepared for this task.
Councilmember Roger Wykle, seeking re-election, has a well established pro-open space record. He voted against the Hetfield Estates development citing inconsistency with the Moraga Open Space Ordinance; he voted against Via Moraga (now under construction across from Starbucks) because its two-story houses so close to Moraga Road block views of Rheem Ridge and mar the scenic corridor; and he voted against Harvest Court, currently being built off Camino Ricardo overlooking Moraga Center, citing environmental impacts. In addition, he has proven highly competent on budgetary, infrastructure, and governance matters as well.
As a Planning Commissioner, Kymberleigh Korpus has been dedicated to the faithful implementation of Moraga’s regulations, including those aimed at preserving its scenic beauty and semi-rural character. She said “no” to a massive proposed home that would have dwarfed existing homes in the neighborhood while obstructing public views of Campolindo Ridge, and she pushed the town to rethink the controversial Moraga Town Center Homes development, offering detailed analysis arguing that its approval process lacked the rigor required by the Municipal Code.
Jeanette Fritzky chairs the Parks and Recreation Commission, and although it doesn’t handle land-use decisions, she has expressed her commitment to preserving open space and her sense of responsibility to the majority of Moragans who have repeatedly stressed that core value. As a candidate, she has studied open space issues thoroughly so she may effectively fulfill that responsibility as a Councilmember.
For 15 years I’ve attended public hearings, advocating meaningful protection for Moraga’s remaining open spaces. I strongly recommend Wykle, Korpus, and Fritzky as the best candidates to ensure that Moraga’s hillsides, ridgelines and scenic beauty are preserved for the benefit of generations of Moragans to come.
- Suzanne Jones, Founder, Preserve Lamorinda Open Space -
Three Candidates Support Open Space
Of the four candidates running for three Moraga Town Council seats, three–Roger Wykle, Kimberleigh Korpus and Jeanette Fritzky–either have strong track records or have expressed firm support on the open space and hillside preservation measures so vital to Moraga’s future as a semi-rural community. The exception is Graig Crossley.
Crossley is a throwback to the old days and the old ways in Moraga, when the town was run by a clique of hand-picked politicians who thought they knew best – and lost touch with the community. He was a council member for 10 years during which time he consistently favored what he calls property owner rights over community rights. For example, back in 1985, Crossley’s own Rheem Valley neighborhood was threatened by a plan to build 110 hillside houses. Massive grading would have carved up Mulholland and Campolindo Ridges, destroyed the contiguous Scofield, Rheem and LaSalle neighborhoods, and opened the floodgates to similar ridge destruction across Moraga. A group of us met with councilman Crossley, our Scofield neighbor, asking for his help to stop or at least significantly modify this development abomination. He turned us down flat; as he left the meeting I remember vividly his parting words: “You’ll think of something.”
Well, we did think of something. We mounted a town-wide, grass-roots initiative to help protect ALL of Moraga’s remaining open space. It was a hard fought campaign that was vigorously opposed by every member of the town council, including Crossley. But it passed and we now know it as MOSO.
Today, 30 years later, Crossley’s vision for Moraga is unclear. He remains reluctant to support open space and hillside preservation. In a July interview in this paper, he conceded that MOSO “probably was a good thing,” but his campaign statements are silent on Moraga’s vital look-and-feel issues. Nov. 8 we have a choice of returning to the past with Crossley, or choosing three fresh, energetic, forward-looking candidates: Wykle, Korpus and Fritzky.
- Richard Immel -
Korpus for Town Council
I have known Planning Commissioner Kymberleigh Korpus since she was born. I knew her as a child of energy, impatient to take on the world. I knew her as an Honor Roll and CSF Campolindo student working at Nation’s in Moraga, and passionately playing varsity volleyball from her sophomore year to graduation. I knew her as, dare I say, a formidable opponent when negotiating for privileges and latitude as a teenager. I always knew her to be a strong advocate for herself in her callow youth. And now that she has educated herself, matured and gained experience in her chosen career, I know her as a passionate advocate for whatever she loves.
I remember when Kymberleigh could not wait go to college and get out of “Bor-aga.” I laughed to myself knowing that someday her youth in Moraga would be a grounding and beautiful memory. In 2011 her Moraga memories propelled her home to its golden hills with cows, its quiet streets, its excellent schools and its neighborhood safety. This year Kymberleigh’s love for Moraga has propelled her to serve Moraga, first on the planning commission and now on the town council, to better protect Moraga’s peaceful nature for everyone who loves it. Everything she offers her family and clients she now offers to Moraga residents: her ability to retain, organize, and analyze copious quantities of data, derive a thorough and cohesive understanding of how it all logically fits together, or identify contradictions within; her ability to simplify, explain and teach clearly what she understands; her integrity.
In her careers as attorney/advocate and wife/mother, Kymberleigh long ago learned how to treat everyone with respect, rationality and honesty. I’ve watched her skillful approach in public planning commission discussions regarding the controversial developments near the Moraga Way fire station and Rheem Boulevard. Her arguments persuaded more than one member of the commission. She never stoops to intimidate or browbeat. She works, simply and indefatigably, to convince. I think Kymberleigh is perfect for Moraga. Please join me in voting for her.
- Roberta Thomas (Kymberleigh’s mom) -
Clarifying Korpus’ Points
In your last issue, you published a Letter to the Editor penned by Mr. Woehleke, chair of the Moraga Planning Commission. I write to put his disparaging comments about planning commissioner Kymberleigh Korpus’ conduct (in connection with the highly controversial City Ventures project) into perspective, and to explain why I strongly support Kymberleigh’s candidacy for the Moraga Town Council.
Perhaps Mr. Woehleke has forgotten why Moraga residents created the Planning Commission in the first place. The town asserts Planning Commissioners “are responsible for reviewing, evaluating and deciding land use applications in accordance with the Town’s policies and regulations.” Isn’t that exactly what Kymberleigh was doing (rather than meekly adopting the unsupported opinions of others for political expediency)?
Kymberleigh is a practicing attorney herself, and she invested a lot of time to research a complex situation and reduce her analyses to writing so others could benefit from her work. Even Mayor Metcalf acknowledged the accuracy of her core point (that the town was not following the review process set forth in the Municipal Code) when he stated at the Aug. 24 town council meeting that the town had “corrupted its own processes.” The CV project was opposed by the Fire Department, and it created such conflict within the community that 1,500 residents signed a referendum to challenge the project by ballot. Mr. Woehleke mentioned none of this.
As most people who have listened to her speak on the subject (or read her open letters) know, Kymberleigh has always discussed her concerns about the CV project in a thoughtful, logical and respectful manner − despite commissioners Woehleke’s and Marnane’s repeated efforts to shut her down. Her arguments persuaded two other commissioners, and Mr. Woehleke’s motion to approve the CV project failed. It makes one seriously question whether his letter was objectively written with pure motives, does it not?
I personally think the Planning Commission should be more than a rubber stamp for the town council, and I say “Bravo!” to Kymberleigh. She is a breath of fresh air, and we need more people in government like her.
- Stephen J. Huxley -
City Ventures Violates Town's Plans
The approval of City Ventures' Moraga Center Townhomes by the town council (3 - 2) on Aug. 24 was based on misinformation. Lack of due diligence was shocking. I have heard the word "lawlessness."
At a July Planning Commission meeting, commissioner Kymberleigh Korpus listed numerous concerns with the process and violation of plans, codes and character. Two other commissioners voted no.
The planning department refused to answer Ms. Korpus' questions. The town council chose not to address them.
Although Dave Trotter expressed concerns for "legality," he voted with City Ventures. Teresa Onoda and Roger Wykle voted no. It appears the council based their decisions upon misinformation. The town attorney said there was only one option - to vote for the appeal, for City Ventures, yet in the meeting report, it listed several options!
A resident presented a clause from the Moraga Center Specific Plan EIR. It requires one story houses and at least one 50-foot corridor along the scenic corridor. This has three stories, 10-foot building separations and 25-foot corridors with duplex/triplexes at the end of each corridor. The town always claimed MCTH lies within this EIR, and no specific EIR was needed. When asked about the EIR conditions, the town attorney apparently debunked it, mumbling something about a recent document.
The town chose not to continue the discussion for a later date. Why the rush, when the plans and character are at stake?
The town did not make modifications that would eliminate the fire department's opposition. The fire department voted against it and requested less units.
The project did not meet requirements for the town to vacate the offer of dedication for the easement.
The town planner explains these massive buildings are new and being "introduced" to Moraga. They have never been in Moraga because they violate the plans, codes and semi-rural character.
Previously, the council admitted it violates building separations, setting a precedence for other developers to violate our plans.
One council member ran because of watching residents' frustration with City Ventures. Now Korpus is running because of this project's questionable process.
Write and take action Moraga residents!
- Margaret Gee-
Letters to the Editor Supporting Kymberleigh
for Moraga Town Council 2016