Bitter in Benicia

Bitter in Benicia

There are 97 comments on the Vallejo Times-Herald story from Jun 19, 2008, titled Bitter in Benicia. In it, Vallejo Times-Herald reports that:

The flavor of downtown Benicia tastes bitter. What used to be warm, familiar and comforting has turned cold and uninviting.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Vallejo Times-Herald.

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Citizen

United States

#1 Jun 23, 2008
Can't agree more with what you wrote.
Just an FYI O'Leary's is still open. A group of us were there this past weekend.
Driving While Black

Vallejo, CA

#2 Jun 23, 2008
the only thing I like about Benicia is the fact I don't live there. :)
DWB

San Francisco, CA

#3 Jun 24, 2008
"the only thing I like about Benicia is the fact I don't live there.:)"

Us Too!
Stay Home

Mountain View, CA

#4 Jun 24, 2008
Driving While Black wrote:
the only thing I like about Benicia is the fact I don't live there.:)
We are very happy you don't live here either! yippee
Just a thought

Paradise, CA

#5 Aug 15, 2008
It is what you make. Nice to place to visit...
I have grandparents that moved from Benicia to
Oroville, but now that they are dead, I have an aunt that is moving them back. I guess because they have nothing to say, it makes ok??

“Judge Much?”

Since: Apr 08

Vallejo

#6 Aug 15, 2008
I haven't been to Benecia since I moved back to Vallejo. Oh, wait thats not true, Mom's doctor is over there so we have to go every now and then.

Mainly the reason I have not been is because when I first got here I discovered the Vallejo area on Topix and read so many slams against Vallejo by those that live in Benecia that I really don't think it is my kind of place to visit. I'll go to Napa, Marin, Waterfront Sacramento (I lived there ages ago) and give the merchants there my few dollars I have to spend. Then of course there is the city, but the ferry is a bit expensive.

My money does not go anywhere that the city itself seems to put forth an attitude that the city is only for the elite. My favorite city in all of the U.S. is New Orleans so you can see why a town like Benecia just can't come close to what I like. Food, music, people from all over the world to converse with and the people that live there warm, warm, warm. Of course I lived about an hour south of New Orleans where the culture is true Creole.
No Immunity

Belmont, CA

#7 Oct 4, 2008
Thats because they started extending immunity to prosecution to every bad child and relative in police families and not just the police themselves.
Cara

San Mateo, CA

#8 Oct 4, 2008
To "A Simple Human", learn how to spell Benicia correctly and maybe we'd had an ounce of sorrow for you. Boo hoo... Stay in Vallejo. How many of you can say you are a 4th generation NATIVE Californian. Most likely none of you, so go back to where you came from, all of you make Californians look like idiots and radicals. Us natives are hard working and upstanding citizens.
Sherry Petterson

United States

#9 Oct 5, 2008
Citizen wrote:
Can't agree more with what you wrote.
Just an FYI O'Leary's is still open. A group of us were there this past weekend.
Well, here is a fact about Benicia. Every year I get a the sales tax per person in each city.

Out of 12 cities, Vallejo was ranked 10th and Benicia was ranked 3rd. What that means is that Benicia residents are spending more money in their own city than Vallejo residents are spending in Vallejo. Vallejo's sales tax per person was only $6.00 while Benicia was over $12.00

Basically Vallejo residents are spending their money in other cities. We gave this to the city council after they told us the economy was the main reason. NO, people are going to other cities to buy goods.
JudgeJudy

Pacifica, CA

#10 Oct 5, 2008
The only reason Benicia needs Vallejo as a neighbor is so they can have something to feel smug about.
How Things Work

United States

#11 Oct 5, 2008
JudgeJudy wrote:
The only reason Benicia needs Vallejo as a neighbor is so they can have something to feel smug about.
Funny how things evolve. Many years ago, Benicia was the go-to place for building an oil refinery, huge industrial park, and port operations for autos and petroleum (although they "missed the boat" on a port tax opportunity, but that's another story). Now, as communities around this area struggle with economic issues, "smug" Benicia seems to be well managed. Vallejo chose to cast off it's blue collar heritage to suit the expected influx of new urbanites on MI and Hiddenbrook. It's never too late to change.

Since: Mar 08

San Francisco, CA

#12 Oct 5, 2008
How Things Work,

The main point of this discussion is that city leaders are ruining the downtown. So if Vallejo is casting off it's blue-collar heritage with Mare Island, what exactly is Benicia doing with the $850K faux-downtown lofts at the bottm of First? Or the gargantuan apartments by the Tannery that block the water view?

Benicia has a much higher average income than Vallejo. This means the cities have a completely different set of challenges to deal with.

While downtown Vallejo is embracing small business, has an incredible theater (Empress), and is opening resturants... Benicia is busy trying to shut everythng down after 9 p.m.
Tom B

San Jose, CA

#13 Oct 5, 2008
lets break it down to its essentials: Vallejo is a ghetto slum that has a very few areas that are getting a little better, and more that are getting even worse, aspiring to become an East Oakland. Seems its that wanna-be gangbanger lifestyle that looks so good on TV that Vallejo kids want to emulate. Benicia is a working class town that isnt a ghetto slum, so Valleo types come to Benicia on weekends to escape the sewer they have allowed their town to become. Really wealthy people wouldnt live in either. But of the two, Benicia is far better. I suggest next time you see a fool wanna-be with his trousers halfway to the ground walking around, you pants him.

Since: Mar 08

San Francisco, CA

#14 Oct 5, 2008
Sherry Peterson,

Please explain this report more. Does this include sales tax from home sales? Could it be that Benicia has a higher percentage of home ownership per capita? Which is why the "sales tax per person" is so high?

Does this sales tax report include businesses also, or is it strictly sales generated from individuals?

Benicians don't buy their clothes, furniture, cars, and major appliances in Benicia. So how exactly do you think Benicians are generating all this sales tax revenue?

The devil is in the details...
Sherry Petterson wrote:
<quoted text>
Well, here is a fact about Benicia. Every year I get a the sales tax per person in each city.
Out of 12 cities, Vallejo was ranked 10th and Benicia was ranked 3rd.
Embrace This

Daly City, CA

#15 Oct 5, 2008
VallejoGuy wrote:
How Things Work,
The main point of this discussion is that city leaders are ruining the downtown. So if Vallejo is casting off it's blue-collar heritage with Mare Island, what exactly is Benicia doing with the $850K faux-downtown lofts at the bottm of First? Or the gargantuan apartments by the Tannery that block the water view?
Benicia has a much higher average income than Vallejo. This means the cities have a completely different set of challenges to deal with.
While downtown Vallejo is embracing small business, has an incredible theater (Empress), and is opening resturants... Benicia is busy trying to shut everythng down after 9 p.m.
You one of those downtown dreamers? The difference is that you can feel secure on First Street at 11pm, whereas no one in their right mind is wandering around on Georgia Street after dark. The Empress may be "incredible" to you, but to a lot of other folks, it was an incredible waste of money to appease a small group of users.
Your pals at Triad were supposed to deliver a new project to augment the Empress, but they bailed, absence of new business is termed "a challenge" to you. You keep being an optimist, and I will see things as they really are.

Since: Mar 08

San Francisco, CA

#16 Oct 5, 2008
Embrace This,

I see things as they really are too. What makes you and I different is that the "as is" doesn't deter me from working towards the "to be".

In the years ahead, Vallejo will become more and more business friendly. Benicia on the other hand is decidedly business hostile.

In downtown Vallejo, resturants are opening up. Some will make it, some will not. All I see on First St. is businesses closing down.

I was very saddened to see the For Sale sign in the window of Petals. Shame on Benicians for letting the best resturant on that street go away.
Embrace This wrote:
<quoted text> of new business is termed "a challenge" to you. You keep being an optimist, and I will see things as they really are.

Since: Mar 08

San Francisco, CA

#17 Oct 5, 2008
Tom B,

By "far" do you mean 10 to 15%? I ask that because I spent the last 3 months working in Australia and will return for another couple months. Compared to Australia, Canada, and New Zealand, all of the suburbs in California are quite nice.

You see the difference between Vallejo and Benicia as being worlds apart. But if you look at things with a broader horizon, you realize that the differences between the two are not that great. Everyone here is basically pissing on each other over a relatively small difference.(In the grand scheme of things.)

Personally, I would say that Vallejo has far more potential than Benicia, but it's been hampered by a full range of problems. And realistically, if it wasn't for a toxic refinery sitting in it's backyard, Benicia would have some serious cash flow problems.

Why Benicians are so intent on putting Vallejo down is amazing. Vallejo has five times as many people and a population density twice that of Benicia in a far greater amount of territory. Access to Benicia is controlled through 4 highway exits. Vallejo has 4 highways running through the city.

Vallejo has an entirely different set of challenges to deal with than Benicia. So it's kind of baffling to see Benicia city leaders take a nice quaint downtown neighborhood and open it up to corporate America with faux-downtown housing and run it straight into the ground.
Tom B wrote:
But of the two, Benicia is far better..
Sherry Petterson

United States

#18 Oct 5, 2008
VallejoGuy wrote:
How Things Work,
The main point of this discussion is that city leaders are ruining the downtown. So if Vallejo is casting off it's blue-collar heritage with Mare Island, what exactly is Benicia doing with the $850K faux-downtown lofts at the bottm of First? Or the gargantuan apartments by the Tannery that block the water view?
Benicia has a much higher average income than Vallejo. This means the cities have a completely different set of challenges to deal with.
While downtown Vallejo is embracing small business, has an incredible theater (Empress), and is opening resturants... Benicia is busy trying to shut everythng down after 9 p.m.
I totally agree with the great restaurants, but how can you say incredible Empress? The Empress cost the city over 4 million tax dollars to finish at a time when the city was going bankrupt. I have a serious problem with city leaders dumping over 4 mil on the Empress, while other city services go dry. This does not make any sense.

How is the City getting their money back? Certainty not on taxes from the Empress.
Sherry Petterson

United States

#19 Oct 5, 2008
VallejoGuy wrote:
Tom B,
By "far" do you mean 10 to 15%? I ask that because I spent the last 3 months working in Australia and will return for another couple months. Compared to Australia, Canada, and New Zealand, all of the suburbs in California are quite nice.
You see the difference between Vallejo and Benicia as being worlds apart. But if you look at things with a broader horizon, you realize that the differences between the two are not that great. Everyone here is basically pissing on each other over a relatively small difference.(In the grand scheme of things.)
Personally, I would say that Vallejo has far more potential than Benicia, but it's been hampered by a full range of problems. And realistically, if it wasn't for a toxic refinery sitting in it's backyard, Benicia would have some serious cash flow problems.
Why Benicians are so intent on putting Vallejo down is amazing. Vallejo has five times as many people and a population density twice that of Benicia in a far greater amount of territory. Access to Benicia is controlled through 4 highway exits. Vallejo has 4 highways running through the city.
Vallejo has an entirely different set of challenges to deal with than Benicia. So it's kind of baffling to see Benicia city leaders take a nice quaint downtown neighborhood and open it up to corporate America with faux-downtown housing and run it straight into the ground.
<quoted text>
If Vallejo is so great, then why are businesses leaving and not wanting to build in Vallejo?

Since: Mar 08

San Francisco, CA

#20 Oct 5, 2008
Sherry Peterson,

The city loaned the development group $2.8 Million in 2003 when there was well over a $10 Million dollar surplus. AND the housing market was on fire... AND we were not in a recession.

Please correct my numbers here if I've mistated something. Preferably by pointing to a published document.

The city services went dry because the PSU contracts are seriously flawed. We've discussed this in other threads, and that will be corrected soon.
Sherry Petterson wrote:
<quoted text>
I have a serious problem with city leaders dumping over 4 mil on the Empress, while other city services go dry. This does not make any sense.
.

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