O’Malley threatens mayor with alley brawl

May 23, 2008

By KAREN VELIE

Atascadero City Council member Tom O’Malley challenged Mayor Mike Brennler to handle a dispute regarding council procedures his way, man-to-man out in the parking lot, said numerous attendees of Thursday’s “public trust and campaign reform workshop.”

During the conciliatory-turned-contentious meeting, O’Malley interrupted and argued with a speaker during public comment. Brennler asked O’Malley to let the speaker finish. When it appeared O’Malley couldn’t hear the mayor over the altercation, Brennler began waving his hand at the council member.

“If you don’t stop shaking your hand at me, we are going to have to meet out back in the parking lot,” O’Malley is reported by numerous witnesses to have said.

O’Malley did not respond to requests for comment.

Late last year, the council voted to hire a mediator at a cost of around $9,000 to oversee a series of meetings designed to help city leaders develop skills needed to foster publics trust and confidence. At the first meeting a few months ago, O’Malley is reported to have hurled insults and argued with Brennler and Tom Shanks, the mediator.

Shortly before O’Malley’s latest threat, Suzy Anderson, a member of “A Better Atascadero,” — a political action committee — accused council member George Luna’s wife Ursula of taking certain actions during an election eight years ago.

George Luna said he was not going to listen to “lies,” and walked out of the meeting. Anderson later said she was not speaking on behalf of her group.

Following lunch, Luna returned, and Brennler asked attendees to follow meeting decorum and refrain from personal insults and requests for fist fights. Shanks put a limit on public participation, and the focus turned towards public finance reform.


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62 Comments

  1. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/25/08
    ABA 1 OWM 0

    Citizens of Atascadero get big win!
    By: Anonymous on 6/17/08
    What WILL tom Comar and his union associates do if HIS initiative fails. Will he accept defeat and let the will of the poeple proceed forward with a Wal Mart. I guess this could turn out to show us the real integrity or lack of for the players involved.
    Wouldn't it be interesting to connect the next candidates for the city council to the initiative and then the result of the vote could be carried thru without the usual mud slinging in the mudhole.
    But we will still have Tom O'Malley to save us when he takes sides with whomever the winner may be. Until then Tom will be flip floppin all around Del Rio and El Camino Real.
    By: Anonymous on 6/17/08
    TO TO CRACKER
    If the shield initiative passes during a major election like the upcoming one when we elect a new president. This will be all the evidence I need that the majority has spoken in favor of no large (box) stores. Up until that time I will continue to believe that a very vocal highly energized minority that takes the time to vote during off year elections has been getting its way through hard work but not by being in the majority. Look at the case with the Dalidio ranch in SLO, held up forever by people with your mentality. It goes to a vote of the people, wins approval to allow the development by a 2 to 1 margin . Then the people that opposed it, block it from going forward for 2 years now with legal action. Thats were you far left fringies lose the respect of people that don't agree with you. If the owm faction make their case and win so be it. Will you and your comrades live with a vote that allows a wal-mart?
    By: Anonymous on 6/16/08
    Past councils and the current council are equally responsible for where we are at today. But the cause for our predictiment is the group of people who are always against EVERYTHING in Atascadero. The Wal Mart issue is only a small fragment of Atascadero's demise. These people are lunatics. A Town lover, where do you go shopping, how are your roads? You are correct though that McKinney and the planning department need to go and/or get fixed. The bottom line is that the lunatics have endorsed these people and have pressured them into making Atascadero a true mudhole.
    By: Anonymous on 6/16/08
    to a-town lover

    Keep on dreaming…no retail outlet of quality OR size wants A-town for home. It's so bad that not even Pick-N-save would consider a store. Cred must be rebuilt before thing sget better. Best option is to get rid of All CC and starrt from scratch
    By: Anonymous on 6/16/08
    I love my town and I'm very pleased to see that the city council and planning commission majority has changed. I support Luna, Brennler and Beraud. You people who want to attck them with your childish b.s. are the Good Ole Boys that supported the previous councils who are responsible for bringing Atascadero into its present state. No body but a Wal-Mart wanted us long before the majority CC was changed and that is exactly why it was changed. People like Buban & Jackson can blog away and keep toking off their crack pipes. The people of Atascadero are laughing at you. As for the planning commission they are better now than they have ever been. The CC needs to "get rid" of Wade Mckinney and do something about the planning department and the permitting process etc. I have no doubt that changes will be made after the FBI investigation.I the mean time keep having your crack parties.

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  2. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/15/08
    ditto
    She didn't hear the report because Dr. Watkins very politely told the city that they had better approve Wal Mart.
    The sad part is that she followed Dr. Watkins and said everything is fine in Atascadero. In her mind this is her concept of fine. The poor woman is in serious need of some help.
    By: Anonymous on 6/15/08
    read Ellen's editorial Sat. What africking joke…al is rosey in A-town. She convieniently forgot all about the economic report from a few weeks ago…totally ignored it.
    By: Anonymous on 6/14/08
    One thing to add to my last comment: NOT IN MY BACK YARD UNLESS ITS A PUBLIC TRAIL PLANNING COMMISSIONER JOAN O'KEEF.
    By: Anonymous on 6/14/08
    TO TO AFFORDABLE FOME
    You want to see a bunch of NUTS, attend a planning commission meeting. The only thing they can approve is a lube n go Directly across from our downtowns soon to be most significant off-ramp. Not in my back yard Planning commission chairperson Joan O'keef (appointed by Luna) championed this through because of her personal friendship with the owners. Attend a meeting and watch this collection of kooks, miss fits dead heads and former woodstock dancers at work and I guarantee even the most ardent of Far left fringe whack will come away embaressed.
    By: Anonymous on 6/11/08
    Could someone please explain to me what a great job this city council is doing. Where is there ANY commercial growth? Dr. Watkins says the city is in a crisis. Ellen Beruad, our next mayor says everything is ok-now that is stupid. Anyone who thinks everything is ok is nuts. She probably stay at ASH.
    When Trader's Joe's told Atascadero to shove it that should have turned the light on for somebody to do something. The result has been nothing. The city needs a remodle before anything will happen. George Luna, Ellen Beraud and their support groups have tainted this town so bad that no businesses will come here. Why, because they don't need the harassment along with the high fees. Our new hotel at Santa Rosa and 101 can't even get a restaurant to go in next door. So, Jack in the Box will give it a whirl. I wish them all the luck in the world when they request a drive thru and then want to put a sign in front of the business.
    Just another day in the mudhole that is rapidly drying up.
    By: Anonymous on 6/11/08
    What? You said the CC majority and oppose Atascadero groups have stopped ALL development in Atascadero. You really are starting to be known as a bunch of nuts that can't keep any senblence of fact or truth straight.
    By: Anonymous on 6/10/08
    They are all guilty of lieinf at Atascadero. Clay, O'Malley & Luna were all in on it.
    Jim Lewis was hired to take the heat off of McKinney,
    You are absolutely right about setting a good example.
    They can't even do that. Their attempt at that resulted with O'Malley challenging the mayor to a fist fight.
    What else needs to be said?
    By: Anonymous on 6/9/08
    You are correct about the poor behavior of McKinney’s Jim Lewis. Jim Lewis lied to the public which should have been grounds for termination. This behavior kicked off the whole lack in public trust. I will never forget the lackluster performance of Jim Lewis and Warren Frace being interviewed on KPRL sound off during the walmart cover-up. It was a complete disgrace. And the really pathetic thing is that the City Council has to hold public trust forums in lieu of setting an example by taking action against their two or three managers. These boys represent a total lack in judgment and have contributed to the continuing fiscal decline of our city. It’s no longer funny, it’s despicable.

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  3. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/9/08
    An "affordable home" is simply a photo op for a politician. There is no such thing. Anyone who would promote, the city of Atascadero, a 50 year deed restricted home has no business making these type of decisions. Proof of this is the current financial condition that the city is currently in.
    If the city was really concerned about "affordable homes" they would set an example and have relief of building fees, approx. $30,000-$40,000 per house.
    But the bottom line is that no one is going to have be concerned about providing any new "affordable homes" in Atascadero because the Oppose Atascadero groups have accomplished their goal and stopped ALL development in Atascadero.
    I wonder if Luna, Beraud & Brennler will invite all of their cronies to the wake for Atascadero?
    By: Anonymous on 6/9/08
    What is an affordable home? Homes in Atascadero were aceraging around 500K+. So is a 400K home affordable? Is a 300K home affordable. I wonder what bone heads at the State came up with that idea?
    By: Anonymous on 6/9/08
    A couple of things. The only attempt of getting any commercial growth to Atascadero is Wal Mart. Representatives of the City Manager's office (McKinney & Lewis) and members of the City Council, including GEORGE LUNA, attempted to "recruit" Wal Mart to come to Atascadero. They all lied about it because they have no backbone and that's the way it is in Atascadero.
    You must remember that all of the people who are complaining about the over abundance of new housing in Atascadero are the first in line wanting "affordable housing." The results of that is 72 "affordable homes" at Dove Creek and more in other projects. Also at the same time the State MANDATED that Atascadero have 1800+ "affordable homes."
    So who is to blame? EVERYONE because they tried to please everyone.
    If only the Atascadero could ever tell the truth and just get a bit of class.
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    The problem is with the planning department and the permitting process. As for Trader Joes, just think about it. There is a TJ in SLO so no one would have been coming up the grade to go to TJ. That leaves Paso, Templeton and Atascadero to patronize TJ's. They picked a spot in the middle. The permitting process in Atascadero didn't help either but the entire CC has been for retail business from the start. It's the WM GOB's that are telling everyone that the CC majority doesn't support retail developoment. Shame on you for telling such lies all because O'Malley and Clay don't like being in the minority (for the first time in their lives). The town has never been in such bad shape becasue of all the un-balanced residential building that the town now has to provide services for. That was O'Malley , Clay and Scalise who did that against warnings and the general plan growth charts. WM will go to a vote of the people, let them decide and let the CC do their job.
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    Since this is about Tom O'Malley the quote from Trader Joe's came from Tom. After that what did he do to make things better for Atascadero?
    NOTHING NOTHING NOTHING
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    Is Wal Mart the almighty answer to Atascadero? Maybe, Maybe not. Atascadero is where it's at because of their attitude. After Trader Joe's left 2 million dollars on the table and went 1 1/2 miles up the road there should have been some serious actions at City Hall. The reason they did not come to Atascadero as a person is quoated who was at the meeting "they (Atascadero) are too wishy washy and you can't trust them." How much clearer is it than that. But that IS the attitude and perception of Atascadero. I've been a resident for 35 years and this is the worst condition this town has ever been in.
    The majority of this City Council, Luna, Beraud & Brennler have actively participated to bring this town to their knees. Luna as a former Planning Commissioner and longest sitting councilmember, Beraud as a no voting member of the Planning Commissioner and now the City Council. Our next Mayor-no wonder she voted NO for electing the mayor. Breenler for being part of the gang and having been supported by OPW, AHOA, Trees etc..
    The current city council is completely dysfunctional and while they promote themselves and their attitude their will be no chance for survival.

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  4. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    You are the ones attacking Brennler, Luna and Beraud. Like I said I live the spin. WM will go to the vote of the people under the shield ititiative. The people will pass the initiative and we will all get to listen to you O'Malley GOB's rant for the next 5 years and hold up progress while the rest of us build a retail opportunity in Atascadero.
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    TO TO CRACKER
    Will you and your comrades accept the majority vote? I haven't seen that happen with you fringes on the far left. Your always in shock when you discover everyone doesn't think like you.
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    You mean we are all dead in the water if we don't get a WalMart. Well that will be going to a vote of the people so grow up and learn to live with the majority vote.
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    TO CRACKERJACK
    Moving to Paso would be easy, but then the town I chose to live and raise my 3 kids in 26 years ago would be left to continue its downhill slide. No I think I'll stay and fight you flakes. It's the right thing to do!
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    TO TO Matthew
    O'Malley is holding up growth? You've just shown how you and others of your ilk will tell the most ridiculous lies to further your anti business, anti growth, taking of property rights agenda.
    LUNA, BRENNLER, and Beraud and the collection of miss-fits and kooks and dead heads they've appointed to the planning commission will bankrupt this city if they don't immediately change directions. It's mindless supporters like you that make it more difficult for them to do that.
    By: Anonymous on 6/8/08
    Thanks for the spin,I'm sure your friends appreciate it and so do all the retail stores in Atascado. There are many merchants who don't appreciate you saying that they don't exist or matter. you sound rediculous. Its people like you that are holding back growth. Try supporting your city for a change instead of blind O'Malley. He has a stake in the WM deal.
    By: Anonymous on 6/7/08
    tom o'malley is a really great guy. the reaction he got from his sarcastic remark are absolutely rediculous. brennler was in his face, calling him a liar, being himself, and things were already heated. brenler wasn't trying to get his attention, he was being obnoxious. brenlers reaction was priceless. immediate, "you're threatening me! he threatened me!" our city is broke. walmart wants in. i know. wal-mart is evil. they only pay their employees, wait for it, 10 bucks an hour. i know, it's so big and will cause all other flourishing and amazing shopping in our town to close…oh that's right. we don't have any stores. i can't believe how sad our town is. i remember when paso sucked. but paso has flown by us and not looked back. i know they don't owe all of their sweetness to wal-mart, but wal-mart definately hasn't hurt business in that town. anyway, i only got on here to defend o'malley. all the guy does is try to make atascadero. you people raggin' on him have no idea how rediculous the things you say really are….
    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    Cracker Jack,

    Paso is wonderful :) Thank you very much!

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  5. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    Sldier On:

    You can have a ride in my copter, but you must bleave your tin hat in the car
    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    to soldier on,cracker jack and outsider.

    Can't you idiots read. The report is in. We need national retail stores! Its in the paper. Quit blaming people of the past, put some ointment on your roids and move on. Your three stooges are in charge now for several years. Stop blaming others for the problems you've caused and created. So what are you going to do.
    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    How did we get so far off the original basis of this article, which was that Tom O'Malley is feeling hemmed in and apparently has to resort to bullying tactics (AGAIN) to make himself newsworthy. And don't tell me Wal-Mart is the answer to our dilemna – why didn't we get the Trader Joe's?! Probably because the City Manager wanted a bigger cut than they were willing to give. Of course, you need to pay off
    other "friends". If no one has noticed, the whole country has taken a dump, our town just being a small microcosm of the problem.
    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    Move to Paso if it's so wonderful. Boy, the grass is always greener ain't it?ca778
    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    The environmentalists aka AHA, OWM, A-native tree, Alp, etc, etc, Keep telling us we cant blame the current city council. Well the current council was swept into power over the wal – mart issue. That store would sit near the outskirts of town, no doubt pull in other popular stores and restaurants, breathe life into the factory outlets, and keep people from driving out of town to shop and eat. Whats wrong with that picture? I started out saying I didnt care one way or another, Paso is close enough. Go to Paso any evening of the week, it looks like a Norman Rockwell painting, people out everywhere walking in and out of shops and restaurants. Paso's downtown has thrived and continued to add more shopping opportunities in spite of its wal mart, because of its pro business attitude. Who would open a store in our dieing town when 10 miles away you have a far greater chance of being successful? The groups that oppose Wal-mart Can still buy their wine and cheese at Trader Joes. Try to find a parking space at Wal-mart in paso, A.G. or S.M. unless you get lucky your parking in the north 40. Pretty popular stores don't you think?
    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    I say we plant a big garden at ECR and Del Rio. That way all the jobless in A-Town will have something to eat.
    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    How about putting the blame where it really lies – at the City Manager's office. It seems that with all of the wrong doings perpetrated by him has caused most businesses to not want to deal with their crooked ways.

    How about we cut his $150K salary and remove his sidekick ($135K) for a start – there's some savings.

    If the City Managers' expenditures didn't double over the last 7 years, maybe we'd have some money left to do things.

    No, the problem is not the current majority – who are serving at the pleasure of the majority – but are symptoms of previous council's direction coming home to roost.

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  6. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/6/08
    Thursdays Economic Forum.

    I think a big thanks is needed for Oppose Wal-Mart,Luna, Brennler, and Beraud all deserve a huge applause for holding up the Wal-Mart project that could already be on the ground and providing much neaded sales tax to our City. Thanks a bunch you morons.
    By: Anonymous on 6/5/08
    To the Insider – How are you able to use a laptop in an outhouse? The neighbors recommend that stop eating so much hummus and more broccoli.
    By: Anonymous on 6/5/08
    Report from Thursdays Economic Forum.

    Atascadero is in deep doo doo. We need national chain stores to survive. If we don't do something soon were goners. Gee I wonder where we could dig up a large national chain store that could be up and running in the shortest period of time. Hmmmmmm?
    By: Anonymous on 6/5/08
    Are we paying her expenses to the medical pot capital of the world. Did you see the article the other day where an adjacent community had 25% of there rental housing being used to grow medical marijuana. Way to go Ellen looks like you found a way to increase your take from the City with your little junkets.
    By: Anonymous on 6/5/08
    Just heard on the radio that Ellen Beraud is giving a speech regarding her recent visit to Santa Cruz. Won't be long until we are re-named "The People's Repunlic of Atascadero.
    By: Anonymous on 6/4/08
    First they will cut the health department to the bone and then go after planning and building. A reduction in planning and buiding is way over due. Of course they will raise all development and permit fees for the building thier not going to get. Also they will require severe inclusionary housing requirements for housing thier not going to get. There is no blood left in the turnip.Full entertainment will continue with the Sarah Criste show which should really be a hoot at the first of the year.
    By: Anonymous on 6/4/08
    Actually with Patterson, Gibson, and Hill in charge the county just might beat Atascadero to the Bankruptcy court. It will probably be a photo finish with Luna, Brennler, and Beraud bringing Atascadero a close second.
    By: Anonymous on 6/4/08
    Finally….a slogan to start off Thursdays Economic Forum.

    "BANKRUPTCY…ATASCADERO LEADS THE WAY"
    By: Anonymous on 6/4/08
    "The bankruptcy begins"

    Finally, an area where Atascadero is a proven leader!
    By: Anonymous on 6/4/08
    The bankruptcy begins. This should take more than a couple of years and when over the end result will be a much smaller government with far fewer services and no growth. At that time the people will start to vote you out and we will all have won. Youve got the bat and ball so lets see what you can do.
    By: Anonymous on 6/4/08
    if insider was really an insider, he would know who won the 3rd district

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  7. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/4/08
    So how is that election working out for you??!!! Your lies, money, and property rights BullS**t went nowhere.
    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    HONESTY=ARNOLD DECEPTION=PATTERSON(your smoke and mirrors candidate)
    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    Patterson supporters stated in this thread that Patterson was endorsed by the League of Women Voters. This is a flat out lie. No retraction of that statement has been made and they have in fact tried to support that statement as true. If honesty is what you want in government vote for Arnold. Patterson like his supporters will spin every fact to his own benefit. It' one thing to lie its another not to admit it when you have been caught.
    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    this last comment sounds like something Jerry Clay would say. God, Atascadero has some real idiots. No wonder they can't do anything right.
    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    I noticed that Patterson wears leather shoes. No doubt he is into cruelty to animals
    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    Atascommonsense:

    Teeheeheeeeeee

    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    OH Brother!!! Patterson has an office right next to a gun store. Scary. Makes him a closet Ted Nugent most likely.
    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    Check out Arnold's Headquarters. She has a temporary spot at Hurst Financial Offices.
    RE-ELECT JIM PATTERSON
    By: Anonymous on 6/3/08
    According to TV commercials the CA Womans League of Voters supports NO on 98 and YES on 99. So does Patterson.
    Arnold hangs out with Jay Miller from HURST FINANCIAL.
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    Carl Marx, OBama, Patterson, Hill, Gibson, Luna, Brennler, Beraud
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    to Patterson supporters

    What. No comment? Not even an apology?
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    The California League of Women Voters is a fine and well respected orginazation and should take great offence at the use of its name by the Patterson campaign to promote themselves. I'm shocked!
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    Plain and simple, there is not many dirtier things than the arena of ploitics.

    There is a big one coming, any minute now. Might make Atascadero look like misdemeanor violations.

    Where is the breaking news today about the insider?

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  8. ccn_debate says:

    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    to vote for Patterson

    Another underhanded typical lie by the Patteson canpaign and thier supporters. The "California League of Women Voters" NEVER endorses a candidate. I guess the truth never stands in the way of a Patterson supporter. See the quote below directly from the California League of Women Voters web site and then judge for yourself who's spreading the lies.

    "The League is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization of women and men which never supports or opposes candidates or political parties."
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    I hear that there is a bomb shell story about to hit that in comparison will make Atascadero look like kids in a playpen.
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    Maybe they could do a remake of that movie TOMMY. Atascadero could be the place, it's hilarious in itself, and our famous Tom O'Malley could replace Chris Farley as the comedian.
    Would that put Atascadero on the map?
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    way to go tom he is a jerk
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    way to go tom he is a jerk
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    Regarding KPRL

    I listen to KPRL each AM and rarely does anyone call in who would admit being from Atascasdero…I always wondered why

    Anyway, you jokers need to use KPRL as a forum for discussion….no guts, no glory
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    Right on!
    Tom O'Malley is like that gopher on the NASCAR races, he's in his hole and only comes out for highlites. Where has Tom been for his last highlite? Tom is usually a headliner on KPRL and we havn't heard from him. It sure would be interesting to hear Tom take some live questions on the air. Having taken credit for just about everything in Atascadero I wonder if he would take credit for attempting to initiate "The Brawl at the Hall?"
    By: Anonymous on 6/2/08
    It is fascinating to see that whenever the topic becoomes Atascadero on this site, that the bloggers respond in droves. No other topic seems to bring 'em out.

    I think it's a dmaning indictment of the Atascadero News, which is pretty worthless in terms of any kind of reporting. And KPRL is strictly pro-business, pro O'Malley, so they're equally pointless.

    The Tribune reporter seems asleep at the wheel. None of this stuff ever gets into the Tribune. Why not?

    Keep those Atascadero stories coming, please. No one in corporate media is willing to tell us what's happening.

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