Monday, October 19, 2009

Rio Nido Inn's new owner wants your ideas!

It's a pretty good zoo, said young Gerald McGrew,
and the fellow who runs it seems proud of it, too.
But if I ran the zoo, said young Gerald McGrew,
I'd make a few changes, that's just what I'd do ....
-- If I Ran the Zoo by Dr. Seuss.
But seriously, what would you do if you owned the zoo? Or, the Rio Nido Inn? After the requisite fumigation, exorcism, & burning of sage, the possibilities of this charming, historic site are endless. The new owner -- whom we can henceforth refer to as "Mr. X" in order to add a dash of mystery & excitement to our dull lives while saving me the inconvenience of typing extra letters -- wants to hear our ideas.

Mr. X (of whom we know nothing other than his Sebastopudlian ties) recently approached Doug Meisner of the Rio Nido Home Owners Association to help gather input & ideas for developing the property. His envoys proclaim that he is willing to consider anything as long as it is agreeable to the community & has the potential to be reasonably successful from a business standpoint. Perhaps Mr. X is amongst the new breed of entrepreneurs seeking to do good while doing well. Perhaps he less ambitiously hopes to avoid previous owner Jim Friedman's unfortunate fate, which has included bankruptcy, jail time, & bad juju in Rio Nido.

Regardless, we should take Mr. X up on his kind offer, think about what to do with the Rio Nido Inn, & ALSO start thinking B-I-G with a capital B. What do we want for the future of Rio Nido? Right now, the sky's the limit. Redevelopment funds are still available for the unlikely combination of property owners & community organizations who work together & share a vision.

Please post your thoughts & ideas as comments below, or, email them to the RNHOA/Doug Meisner at dmc @ rionido . org (sorry, I can't make this email address a link, or they'll get tons of SPAM -- please just delete the spaces after copying & pasting). Actually, I'd prefer that you simply post them below as comments so we can all enjoy reading them, but it's your choice!

There will soon be a public meeting.


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Justin said...

Earth to Rio Nido: The new owner is Dennis Judd, who has a long record of building "affordable" housing with public funds forked over to him by his friends on the Board of Supervisors and/or the RROC. He is presently lobbying for a whopping $400,000 in RROC funding for the "Rusky Rika Dachas" public housing project on River Road -- a known hang-out spot for gangs, which the police are well acquainted with.

No doubt he is angling for yet another government subsidy in order to fatten his bank account insofar as the Rio Inn is concerned. In spite of his phony "public input" appeal, we have no reason to believe that the pattern he has followed in the past -- buying up decrepit properties and then getting his buddies in office to fork over taxpayer money for "affordable" housing -- will not hold true in this case.

By the way, he paid an astounding $250,000 for the Rio Inn -- less than many of you paid for your modest homes. And he paid CASH.

If Senor Judd wants to go into the housing business, that's his business -- but why he should be able to do it with OUR money is beyond me.

I spoke to him recently, and he claims he will not accept Section 8renters in the new facility. How he will be able to discriminate against welfare recipients while still taking government money for his project he did not explain.

The value of property in Rio Nido is rapidly plummeting: this will cause it to fall further. I realize we're all supposed to be for "affordable housing," but in reality, if you look at the rental listings for this area, there is ALREADY plenty of relatively cheap housing -- rental housing -- in Rio Nido. There are currently no less than 8 availble rental units here, all under $700 -- and that's just what I could glean from craigslist. Go to the D&G real estate web site, and you will see plenty more. Not to mention other rentals in the general Guerneville area.

It's time to call a halt to the blatant cronyism that makes our tax dollars available to anyone with the "right" political connections. Giving big campaign contributions to Efren Carrillo should not be the standard when evaluating projects of this kind.

Linda said...

Yeah...right!!! Mr. X came to our neighborhood meeting for our "ideas" too....but once the dollar sign is in his head, sorry folks, it's all show!

His "connection" with Efren Carrillo didn't do Guerneville any favors in our recent appeal either. If there are people out there that want to get together and try to strategize some way out of the mess this town is getting in with the political maneuverings, check out our website at

Anonymous said...

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