Atascadero appoints new mayor

December 14, 2011

Bob Kelley

The Atascadero City Council unanimously voted to appoint Bob Kelley mayor of Atascadero on Tuesday. [SLOTribune]

Last year, Atascadero voters elected to join San Luis Obispo County’s other six cities and begin electing mayors instead of allowing the council to appoint members to one year seats.

In Nov. 2012, Atascadero voters will have their first opportunity to elect their city leader.

At Tuesday’s meeting, council member Roberta Fonzi voiced concerns that whoever was appointed to serve as mayor in the term before the 2012 election would be given an edge because of being an incumbent should that person run for the elected seat. She asked Kelley if he planned to make a run for the upcoming mayor election, the Tribune said.

Kelley, who was first elected to the council in 2008, said he has no intention to run.

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I hope Mr. Kelly has asbestos underdrawers. He seems to be a lightning rod for critical discourse.


REMEMBER THIS ABOUT ATTORNEY ROBERT GRIGGER JONES AND BOB KELLY? And the way Jones LIED about being an already elected City councilman? In 2006? BEFORE the election? which he lossed! DO YOU REALLY WANT A BULLY for mayor of your city?

Rumors of conflict surrounding City Council challenger and lawyer Grigger Jones literally predate his candidacy. In a 2005 city document, leaked in early August, attorney Dennis Law described “highly inappropriate” actions, where Jones purportedly pressured a landowner to sell his property to the Rottman Group. Lot owner Bob Kelly not the city planning commissioner/City Council candidate of a similar name earlier halted talks with the firm because he disliked the manner of the negotiations.

Kelly then reported that he received a letter from the Rottman Group informing him of their plans to build an elevated pad next door that would restrict access to his property.

“Mr. Jones informed me that he was, in fact, retained by the Rottman Group,” Law wrote.

In a more recent incident, city staff hurled accusations last week that developer Kelly Gearhart recruited Jones and co-candidate Bob Kelley to pressure planners to approve amendments to a 12-unit project in Atascadero.

Interesting but irrelevant. And probably inaccurate. Don’t get me wrong, Kelley is your typical anything for development city council member, but they (Grigger and Kelley) were not in on the 2006 election together. They were running against each other.

Walmarts PR group (aka Meridian Pacific, aka the Central Coast Tax Payers Association) asked Kelley NOT to run so they could run Grigger without competition. Kelly was to arrogant to back down and both he and Grigger lost to Brennler because they SPLIT the vote. That alone cost Wally poo 2 years of wasting time with the Ellen Brennler Council.

That being said, Kelley would probably let Walmart build a store out of Styrofoam and toothpicks if that is what they proposed (and Jerry Clay would second the motion). All he wants is future real estate commissions at the cost of anybody or the integrity of our city. You know what a realtor does when there is nothing to sell? He runs for City Council. Build connections for future sales. (and maybe supports his friends … say those who want to build a second movie theater in town)

And about the other Bob Kelly (the property owner), he was paid somewhere near a million dollars for a piece of property that was worth $200k tops… that was an empty lot with contaminated soil (read the Walmart EIR) …. poor Mr. Kelly. Please. Its called business. It’s not even comparable to what the city has done themselves. Remember the Carlton / muffler shop debacle. I bet a little digging would reveal our friends Jimmy Lewis and Wade McKinney had a hand in that deal.

Atascadero is more of a mess than any of us know.

darwin, You’re just so full of it. Bob Kelly ran for the 4 year term seat that was available in 2006 and lost to Ellen Beraud.

Grigger Jones ran for the 2 year seat that was available in 2006 and lost to Mike Brennler. There is no way that either Kelly or Jones had an impact on each others votes, and so yes, essentially they were running together.

Cindy you are correct …. my memory was not so good after 5 years. This was it …. It was Pacas that split the vote with Grigger and allowed Brennler to get in at 39%. Wally had asked Pacas to step down for that purposes and had (one way or another) spent a lot of money on the Jones Campaign.

The issue with Kelley (if my memory serves me correctly) was that they were afraid that Kelley would detract from Omaley’s votes. The fear was of a Kelley / Beraud council because Omaley had been working behind the scenes for a long time with Clay, Scalise, McKinney and Lewis to bring Walmart to town. Also, if I remember correctly there was some manipulation to get Kelley to run for the 4 year, instead of the 2 year for the reason I mentioned previously.

Incidently, Omaley was only elected on a 35% vote. If Anne had not run the election may have been MUCH different. That also had the Wally Rottman camp worried about getting their boy Omaley elected.

I don’t believe that Pacas split the vote between Grigger and Brennler. Pacas was elected on Luna’s coat tails to begin win an was always known to be in Luna’s camp. It’s true that Luna threw her under the bus in favor of Brennler but that was never made entirely public. I believe the votes that went to Pacas would have gone to Brennler anyway. Pacas was identified more with Brennler through the eye’s of the public than she was with Grigger Jones through any semblance of the imagination.

Sorry, I meant that Pacas didn’t split the vote between herself and Grigger Jones.

especially Wade and Jim. Slime and Slimier.

City councils come and go, Wade and Jim are like cancer that remains regardless of who is elected.

Now that is a statement that you and I can agree on.

Shame on you, Roberta. You came across as a bully last night, rudely demanding to know if Bob’s running for mayor next year. You did the same thing a month or two ago on local talk radio. WHO CARES if Bob wants to run. It’s obvious you’ve set your sights on being the first elected mayor of A-town but you don’t need to act like it’s wrong for Bob (or anyone else) to challenge you.

Bob Kelly and Roberta Fonzi both running for Mayor of A-Town would be an interesting race. Of the current council, they’re my two favorites (sorry Nanci, I spoke with Kelly and he assured me that he was never a close friend of Gearhart). Both of their seats are up for grabs this year and I suspect they’ll both get re-elected either way, that being Council member or Mayor.

Has anyone heard if Jerry Clay plans to re-up?

I think the person who is the weakest council member (when it comes to ignorance) is Sturtevant. I was blown away a few months ago when his wife got up and spoke during public comment. She said with a matter of fact crude tone that Wal-Mart has “INC” after it’s name and as a corporation they don’t have to answer to the public about their financial practices or how they concluded what their fair share of the traffic mitigation was! I almost fell off my chair. I have to assume that she ran that past her husband before she made such an egregious and utterly ignorant statement.

“Both of their seats are up for grabs this year”. Opps sorry I said that a month too soon. Obviously I meant 2012 or next year!

Hi Cindy I understand he is not a close friend of Kelly Gearhart but is he the same Bob Kelley partnered with Grigger when they were trying (through the Rottman Group) to secure the Walmart? Sorry for any confusion I was told there is a Bob Kelley who was involved with Jones trying to secure the Walmart (Jones even going so far as lying about being on the city council in Atascadero BEFORE the election) Let me know Thanks

Nanci, You have two different stories confused and combined into one. Grigger Jones and Bob Kelly (a planning commissioner at the time) were summoned to a site owned by Kelly Gerahart. KG was attempting to coerce a staff member named Steve to forgo a requirement for a planted grass area in a parking lot. KG introduced Jones and Bob Kelly to Steve as “here are your next to CC members”. That was just before the 2006 elections that both GJ and BK lost in. When questioned, Grigger Jones said he was only there at the site to observe how the process works but it was brought up that Grigger had been a previous planning commissioner so his excuse was rather obtuse.

The Wal-Mart issue had to do with an entirely different Bob Kelly who was a lot owner at the WM site. He was coerced into selling to the Rottman Group by our Fire Chief Kurt Stone. It had nothing to do with Bob Kelly who is our current Council Member and previous planning commissioner or Grigger Jones for that matter.

Two separate issues all together.

Thanks for the clarification. I was told Jones had verbally confronted someone who was trying to stonewall the Wal Mart efforts back in 2006. And had also told this person he was already in place with the City Council and would be able to push the Wal Mart construction efforts through. Also I was told Robert Grigger jones was the attorney of record for several years for the Rottman Group. Sorry for the confusion on the two different BOB KELLEY’s. My apology to the new Mayor.

It’s possible that Grigger Jones approached someone on the Wal-Mart issue but he wouldn’t have said that he was a CC member. He might have said that he had it in the bag and would be on the next CC. As it turned out, he lost and will never make it into a public office, his name is mud.

I have nothing nice to say about this guy.

The entire Atascadero city council (as well as Wade, Jim & other staffers) should be flushed out. Time to get some new & uncorrupted people in there. No more good ol’ boys. (or “girls”–in Roberta’s case) Time for a change!

He is Jerry Clay 2.0.