Announcement: Mark Anthony Jones on Why He Should Be Elected to City Council

Jones has been a resident of the Hercules/Rodeo area since 1977 and owns the 44 Sports Lounge.

My name is Mark Anthony Jones and I was born Feb. 14, 1966 in Richmond, CA. My wife and I opened 44 Sports Lounge in Hercules, Jan. 1, 2010. I’ve been happily married to Dana Jones for almost 6 years & we share two loving boys, Mark Anthony (13) and Mason (3). 

My primary reasons for running for city council, among other things, is to offer different and creative approaches to solving our city's financial issues; to see the city maintain its socially inclusive reputation and restore the city’s good name, both here in the Bay Area and nationally.

 I have been a resident in the Hercules/Rodeo area since 1977. Since that time, I have watched the area, specifically Hercules, go through tremendous growth and have stayed in tune with the city happenings. 

My wife and I are proud residents of this beloved city and its most recent publicized issues have given us great cause for concern. In January of 2010 we opened 44 Sports Lounge on Willow Avenue. This full service restaurant has become a very popular place for the over-40s to relax after work and watch a game. Having a business, home and family in Hercules, I have a very serious vested interest in its success. As a candidate for city council, I am determined, through hard work, creative and proven business savvy, to get Hercules back on track, as one of the most desired places to live, in the Bay Area.

I want the residents of Hercules to know Mark Anthony Jones. I am my own person, who has obligations to no one for anything and will not make empty campaign promises to get elected. 

My job, when elected, is to serve in the best interest of ALL the citizens in the city of Hercules, not just a select few. Moreover, I am an extremely accessible person and candidate, as many voters have already learned by visiting me at our sports lounge and introducing themselves to me. 

I am a fact finder and do not subscribe to innuendo or the churning of the “rumor mill.” I address issues head on. For example, there appears to be concern regarding an inordinate amount of police activity at our establishment, the 44 Sports Lounge. No doubt, others will try and use this matter against me in the upcoming election. But do you really know the truth behind these incidents? Has anyone cared to speak with me personally about them?

Again, I face matters head on and invite anyone with any concerns they have about these reported incidents, to thoroughly scrutinize them (with me personally if you like), to get to the truth behind them.

I know as a matter of politics, people will try and “spin” the reported police incidents, to gain an advantage. However, I invite any and all to analyze these reports, by contacting me or the Hercules Police Department and decide for themselves the truth about our family business. 

Public safety is my first priority.  It is a must that we continue to keep our city safe. In doing so, the city will remain vibrant. In a vibrant city, business will thrive; and communities will grow in a positive direction. Moreover, our senior citizens enjoy living in Hercules, because of the safety of the city. I want to keep it that way.

My second priority is to be intimately involved in re-establishing the cities credit rating. As a growing city it is imperative that the city has a positive credit rating.

My third priority is seeing the completion of the Sycamore project. This, and other city projects, have been started but have been put on hold for financial reasons. These projects must be a priority before they become urban blight. 

Specifically, the Sycamore Project, which has now sat untouched for weeks, could have been massaged into a real profit center, or at least an urban success story. As a member of the Hercules City Council, I will ask the necessary questions of fellow council members, city staff and Planning Commission, regarding the feasibility and practicality of the successful completions of such projects.  We as a city have to hold our leaders accountable for their decisions – that’s why we elected them to office.

In addition, the most talked about development project in our city is the Bayfront/Intermodal Transit Center. As a businessperson in this city, this project excites me.  It will give Hercules tremendous access to the entire Bay Area. This project, like any other project needs to be thoroughly scrutinized, to minimize city exposure and maximize the city success.  Every project should be looked upon in that manner.    

The future, of the city of Hercules is too important to just put anyone in office. We need a person that is fully committed to doing the right thing, even if their “supporters” don’t agree. We have an opportunity to turn the city of Hercules around.  But like our family restaurant business, it’s going to take hard work & dedication.  Please vote for the person who is “Leading by Example” MARK ANTHONY JONES on June 7th



Susan D.Keeffe May 16, 2011 at 04:54 PM
To get back on topic for relevancy for the upcoming election, today's Patch article says it all. There's no point in chasing a red herring. Hopefully Mr Jones understands what this election is about.
Sal May 16, 2011 at 08:03 PM
@Jeffrey Boore, You say earlier, " Of course, we should not be starting construction on a building that we cannot afford to finish. Who would do something so crazy as that?! That would be as crazy as spending millions of dollars on designing a facility on land that we don’t own and have no realistic prospect of owning. Is there anyone who would make those kinds of crazy decisions?" I think you make great points, but from what I can gather your comments could be directly associated with the Waterfront Project. To me this sounds exactly like what the City would be doing. The Waterfront developer has no money, that is obvious, all he is trying to do is leverage the City and have the City be in the same boat as they are on Market Hall and the soon to be Sycamore North ghetto, oh I mean project. I hope the new candidates that are elected will take a real long hard look at the deal that the City is trying to work in order to make the Bayfront happen. Can someone explain to me how anyone can or is willing to pay $3.00 to make a $1.75??? Thats what this project would be, it would cost nearly twice as much to build it than what you could sell it for in this market, so why is the City spending so much time and effort to try and deliver this dead project? Mr. Charlie Long I know you were hired to try and make this happen, but please start delivering the facts about this project!
Jeffrey Boore May 16, 2011 at 08:42 PM
@Sal - Where do you get your information that the Waterfront developer has no money? That is not true. The money for the commercial side of the development has never been the big issue. The problem now, though, is that there is a very real threat for those investors to withdraw that money because the city has blocked the project from moving forward for so many years that they have lost confidence that Hercules is serious about ever entitling the development. If this city will move forward with entitling the project and will commit to the reasonable public investment in the necessary infrastructure to support it, then the commercial side of the development will move forward. That was true four years ago, two years ago, and today. Further, I don't understand at all your suggestion that we could end up with a half-finished building like the disaster at Sycamore North. What building would that be? Surely you don't mean the train station, because I'm not suggesting we begin building that until the money is in hand. Surely you don't mean the commercial buildings, because there is no reason at all to believe that the developer, who has built many successful, similarly scaled projects, would repeat the stupidity and malfeasance of our city's leaders.
Jeffrey Boore May 16, 2011 at 08:51 PM
The development of the waterfront was conceived in the charette by thousands of Herculeans, supported in the Waterfront Initiative by nearly 4,000 Herculean's signatures, received glowing support at the state and national level, and then was effectively thwarted by a handful of people in city hall. Nearly every aspect of the financial mess that we find ourselves in can be traced to the decisions of these few people that have blocked the development of the waterfront from moving forward. A significant part of the motive of those few people was to divert the money intended for waterfront development into the pockets of cronies like those at Red Barn. It is now very galling to see yet another chapter in this unfolding where the popular waterfront project, whose delay has cost this city so many scores of millions of dollars, is now being compared as though it is similar to the very schemes that have thwarted it.
Giorgio C. May 17, 2011 at 02:58 AM
Hey Susan, I raised the question of education. Someone responded. We are having a discussion. If you don't like it, butt out. Go elsewhere. Gee whiz. Who asked you for the time of day. We get it. You don't like Candidate Jones. Here's a suggestion-don't vote for him.


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