BULLy Pulpits

February 19, 2009

A big part of a Town COWncil member’s job is to represent our Town’s interests on other boards and commissions in our area. It is a part of the job that doesn’t get as much attention as it should. Since Mayor Mason had made the new assignments at the January 27th COWncil meeting, we thought this would be a good time to talk about some of these assignments and which COWncil members are responsible for bringing our voice to them so that if you have an opinion on an issue before one of these bodies, you will know who to BULLy!

First on the list is the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG), which is a regional governmental advisory body made up of representatives from local counties and cities in the Bay area. It consists of the traditional ‘nine-county Bay Area’ and 101 cities and towns. It was formed in 1961 to get local COWmunities talking and working together; the current President is our own San Mateo COWnty Supervisor Rose Jacobs-Gibson. Woodside is a General Assembly Member. ABAG according to their website, “…addresses social, environmental, and economic issues that transcend local borders. An elected official from each member city and county serves as a delegate to ABAG’s General Assembly. The General Assembly determines policy annually, adopts the annual budget and work program, and reviews policy actions of ABAG’s Executive Board. Each delegate has one vote, and a majority of city and county votes are required for action.” Woodside’s representative to ABAG is COWncil member Dave Tanner.

A somewhat similar organization, but just for San Mateo COWnty and its 20 communities, is the City / County Association of Governments (C/CAG). C/CAG, “deals with issues that affect the quality of life in general; transportation, air quality, stormwater runoff, hazardous waste, solid waste and recycling, land use near airports, and abandoned vehicle abatement.” A major project they are focusing on at the moment is the 2020 Gateway Project, an attempt to address some of the major traffic issues caused by the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge. COWncil member Deborah Gordon is our representative to C/CAG.

A third organization that also serves as a local government roundtable is the Council of Cities, a grouping of the Mayors from cities and towns in San Mateo County. It doesn’t have a website, but an item from a Menlo Park agenda, describes it thus: “The Council of Cities is a body that meets on the fourth Friday of each month to bring together elected officials from cities in San Mateo County. At these meetings elected officials discuss various topics of interest and a speaker often presents as well. Immediately before the Council of Cities program, the San Mateo County City Selection Committee meeting takes place and certain business items are addressed. The Mayor in each city is the voting representative at these meetings.” So, there is a somewhat secretive monthly dinner club for Mayors in our COWnty. Our new Mayor Mason is the representative to the Council of Cities. We are not sure what this group does, other than it appoints the city representatives for HEART which is a Joint Powers Authority formed to set up a trust fund as a source of capital for additional workforce housing in the COWnty.

There’s also the League of California Cities, the group whose annual conference was a political football in our Town for a few months. It’s a statewide group that brings cities together to promote the interests of cities with our State government. Our official representative to the League is Mayor Mason.

There are also a number of more focused organizations that exist for specific issues and tasks. COWncil member Burow is our representative to San Mateo County Operational Area Emergency Services, a disaster-preparedness group. He also represents Woodside at the Airport Community Roundtable, a group focused on noise-abatement and other issues surrounding San Francisco International Airport.

COWncil member Hodges sits as our representative to the County Library Joint Powers Governing Board, that oversees the Peninsula Library System (PLS), our regional library system. The Woodside Fire Protection District has COWncilmember Boynton as our delegate. Richard Tagg, a member of the History Committee, represents Woodside on the Mosquito Abatement District.

There are also Woodside Town COWncil committees that do important parts of the COWncil’s work. Mayor Mason and COWncil members Romines and Burow sit on the Town Manager’s Performance Review Board, for instance (so now you know who to bullame!). Mason, Romines, and Tanner also are assigned the Town Attorney’s Performance Review, and COWncil members Boynton and Romines are responsible for the COWncil Appointments Subcommittee, charged with recommending citizen appointments to standing Town COWmittees. Also listed below is the official Town COWncil laison to each of those committees.

These assignments are important and these COWncil members represent us in carrying out their duties. We appreciate that our Mayor and COWncil are volunteers who dedicate considerable time and energy to our COWmunity. We urge them to make regular reports on these activities so that we all know what is going on and to bring up critical issues for discussion so there can be COWmunity input.

Here’s the official list of our representatives to all of these groups, pulled from the January 27th COWncil Agenda:


Association of Bay Area Governments General Assembly Member —— Councilmember Tanner

City/County Association of Governments (C/CAG) ——- Councilmember Gordon

Council of Cities (Monthly Dinner Meeting) —— Mayor Mason

Council of Cities (City Selection Committee) ——- Mayor Mason

Council of Cities (Legislative Committee) ——- Mayor Mason

League of California Cities Peninsula Division Woodside Liaison ——- Mayor Mason

San Mateo County Operational Area Emergency Services —– Councilmember Burow

Airport Community Roundtable —– Councilmember Burow

Mosquito Abatement District —– Richard Tagg

County Library Joint Powers Governing Board —– Councilmember Hodges

Woodside Fire Protection District —– Councilmember Boynton

Town Manager’s Performance Review —– Mayor Mason and Councilmembers Romines & Burow

Town Attorney’s Performance Review Liaison —– Mayor Mason and Council-members Romines & Tanner

Town Council Appointments Subcommittee —– Councilmembers Boynton & Romines


Bicycle ——————————————— Councilmember Gordon
(and, according to the agenda on the website but not according to the handout at the meeting, Mayor Mason)

Conservation and Environmental Health ————— Councilmember Romines

Livestock and Animal Control ———————— Councilmember Hodges

Open Space —————————————- Councilmember Hodges

Public Safety ————————————— Councilmember Burow

Recreation —————————————— Mayor Mason

Trails ———————————————– Councilmember Boynton

History ———————————————- Councilmember Boynton

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