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Development foes oust Livermore councilwoman
By Eric Kurhi
Contra Costa Times, November 9, 2007

LIVERMORE — Final election results show that incumbent Councilwoman Lorraine Dietrich was defeated by a coalition of voters who cast their ballots for anti-development slate candidates Marj Leider, an incumbent, and newcomer Jeff Williams.

And most of those ballots were cast before Election Day. Tuesday's turnout was low, and absentee ballots outnumbered those cast in the polling booths by a 2-to-1 margin.

Williams garnered the most votes, with 7,311, with Leider close behind at 7,293. Both had approximately 37.8 percent of votes cast. Dietrich, with 4,601, scored about 23.4 percent.

Mayor Marshall Kamena, running unopposed, got 94.5 percent of the vote; the other 5.5 percent of the vote went to write-in candidates.

The main issue of the campaign goes back two years. Dietrich was a supporter of 2005's Measure D, which would have allowed 2,450 new homes in north Livermore. The initiative was defeated by 72 percent of the voters two years ago.

The Friends of Livermore, an anti-development group, put considerable money and effort into knocking Dietrich off the council, which now has full slate of members who are against significant residential development.

Williams had said that a low turnout would help him because those who wanted change would be more likely to cast a ballot.

Leider agreed.

"I think the people who voted against (Measure D) were the same people who got out and worked this election and voted in it," she said.

She said that while the new council is in lockstep regarding North Livermore development, they still have varying opinions on other matters.

"Everyone thinks we all think the same, but that's not the case at all," she said. "We all feel the same about the urban growth boundary, and that's what people want. But there are all kinds of different decisions to make regarding infill development and transit-oriented development."

Re-elected Mayor Marshall Kamena, winner in Nov. 6, 2007, Livermore city council election, advocates for open space.

Incumbent Marj Leider, winner in Nov. 6, 2007, Livermore city council election, advocates for open space.

Newly elected Jeff Williams, winner in Nov. 6, 2007, Livermore city council election, advocates for open space.

Lorraine Dietrich, incumbent who lost in Nov. 6, 2007, Livermore city council election, advocated for 2,450-housing unit development in north Livermore.

*Source: Livermore City Council website.

 

 

 

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