Santa Paula Times

Letters to the Editor

June 10, 2005
Fantastic show! To the Editor:The Santa Paula High School Theater Team and their band are presenting “Once Upon A Mattress,” a musical comedy, at their new renovated auditorium. The musical is full of songs, dances and entertaining, with lots of laughs, which are brought on by the actors performing their comedic acts.The production provides an insight into a classic fairy tale, “The Princess and the Pea.” In “Once Upon A Mattress” there is a princess (Katie Pawlick) who will try and swim the moat surrounding the castle in order to find the prince (Kenneth Johnson).A cast of talented students from Santa Paula High School, together with students from McKevett and Isbell schools, are doing a fantastic job in performing their parts in the play.Lady Larken (Jennifer Skutley), another character in the play, also has a surprise and is in a mad rush to get married. I know you’ll enjoy “Once Upon A Mattress” and it’s being presented to you [closing weekend] on June 10 and 11. Tickets are available at the door.Ray LunaSanta PaulaWhy is Mrs. Sanchez leaving?To The Editor:Re: June 3, 2005 Letter from Anne McInerney-SolisI would just like to respond to the letter to the editor about our/my feelings on the change of leadership at Bedell School. First of all, we, the parents at Bedell have never spoke in a negative way about Patti Fulbright. Our only concern on the upcoming change is why? Bedell has the highest test scores in the district, our students and parents think very highly of Lori Sanchez. Mrs. Sanchez is very in tune with every student in the school, to the extent of knowing each student by name, knowing every parent by name and always having an open door policy for students, parents and staff. I have three children currently attending Bedell and they absolutely love getting up every morning and going to school, not just for the friendships they have made, but because they really like Mrs. Sanchez and the entire staff at Bedell. To me, this is a very big reason why Bedell has succeeded in so many ways. Children respond to great leadership, and to have my children asking, “Why is Mrs. Sanchez leaving us?” really bothers me. I do not have an answer for them.Mrs. Sanchez has only been at Bedell for two years, and the first year was a transition year. This being her second year, she has started to implement new projects, ideas and already has so many plans for next year. To take her out of our school now just does not make any sense. Like the old saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” The parents along with the staff would like to be an 800 school. We are working very hard to become a California Distinguished School again. Changing our principal now will not help us reach our goals. It will take a new principal at least two years to get adjusted and into the flow, and then what...another change? We realize that the School Board and the Superintendent have to do what is best for the district, but don’t the parents and staff know what is best, since we are the ones at the school on a daily basis? I think by gathering over 200 signatures in one day should show how involved we are in the school and in our children’s education.I hope that the School Board, who we as parents have elected, do what is right and speak on our behalf.As far as the credentials of Ms. Fulbright, we do not dispute that, I am positive that she is a wonderful leader, but we already have a wonderful leader. Please do not change that.Thank you,Chanda StocktonBedell Parent and PFC MemberSanta PaulaClear indicationTo the Editor:Two thousand seven hundred registered Santa Paula voters have clearly indicated that they want final approval of very large developments such as Fagan Canyon to reside with the people. We are now witnessing an organized letter writing campaign by persons who would deny voters this right provided by the California Constitution. It is well to ask why these persons would deny us the right to vote.The real issues are about 25,000 additional vehicle trips per day dumped onto our existing streets. The real issues concern the number, size, and mix of housing units.Fagan Canyon is a beautiful area with an ideal climate. Fagan is suitable for a multiplicity of uses that would bring real benefit to everyone. The world is full of builders who would give their right arm to develop this canyon. We need to insist upon quality and have the courage to accept nothing less.The petition has only one real purpose. It would require voter approval of very large developments that would forever alter our way of life. That’s all.Those who would deny voters the right to make the final decision control three votes on the city council, so they want the council to rush a decision before the voters can act in November. The 2,700 voters who signed the petition want to “Let the Voters Decide.” It’s as simple as that.Delton Lee JohnsonSanta PaulaA simple solution?To the Editor:Solving the problem of traffic in and out of Fagan Canyon is easy. Allow each household only one vehicle. Whoops! You cannot deny them the right to own and use more than one vehicle. If you would do this you would also deny them the ability to travel to and from work.In the extreme you are denying the property owners, there is more than one, the right to sell their property for legitimate use. You can’t do that. You are also denying a builder the right to invest his money in construction of homes. You are also denying prospective buyers the right to have an affordable home.Quite a quandary we are in.I know of a man who believed the automobile would never take the place of the horse.Bill MensingSanta PaulaNo home for polluting industryTo the Editor:Last Saturday, an assembly of international mayors was urged by climate experts to fight global warming. Experts warned of catastrophic consequences for the planet if governments fail to act and stressed that climate change was already melting glaciers, raising temperatures and altering weather patterns worldwide.What message does this hold for Santa Paula? Unfortunately, our Mayor and City Manager are presently embarking on the opposite course of action for our city which will result in adverse consequences for the health of our citizens, the endangerment of the Santa Paula Creek and Santa Clara River ecosystems and the degradation of air quality for the entire Valley.
Plans for large scale asphalt plants, some of the most polluting industry around, are now well past the preliminary stages of planning. EIR draft documents have been completed for two such plants planned for the shores of the Santa Clara River and within the 100 year floodplain.Here are just a few of the potentially significant impacts of 20 hour a day, 6 day a week, 20 year asphalt operations highlighted in the Diani Asphaltic Plant EIR:Ozone emissions in excess of County air quality standardsSubstantial increase in dust particlesIncreased cancer rates for residents near plants and Hwy 126Objectionable odors affecting a substantial number of peopleDegradation of the existing visual character and quality of the surrounding areaIncreased daily toxic emissions from heavy diesel truck trafficIncreased truck traffic on major roads incl. Hwys 126 and 150, Harvard and 10th (900+ trips a day/peak)Endangering local riparian and aquatic habitat and pollution of river waterHealth risks to sensitive populations (Thille Elementary School, Harding Park and the Boys & Girls Club)20 hour a day noise impacting City hillside, East area and South Mountain residentsCreation of a new substantial nighttime source of light and glareWe are clearly on a collision course between the City’s desire for short-term solutions to budgetary constraints and the Vision our citizens have set for their community and the Valley as a whole.At this year’s Mayor’s Conference, themed “Green Cities”, dozens of mayors from around the world shared ideas and strategies to address urban environmental issues, including emissions of greenhouse gases. Corporations have begun to recognize the gravity of the threat but so far many city governments have not had the political will to act.In light of these urgent concerns, both local and global, I encourage Mayor Krause, the City Manager and City Council to rethink the direction they have taken on our behalf and act responsibly for the health of the entire community by immediately withdrawing plans for both asphalt plants and curtailing any efforts to bring more polluting industry into our Valley. Listen to the people, it’s the right thing to do.Jennifer DumasSanta PaulaFLAIR thanksTo the Editor:On behalf of Blanchard Library’s FLAIR Literacy Program, I want to say “thank you” to everyone who helped make our 16th Annual Executive Spelling Bee a great success! Funds raised will be matched by the State Library! Thank you to the brave spellers from KIWANIS CLUB - Dr. Kent Hollenback, D.D.S., Matthew Misenhimer and Margaret Nesbitt, SANTA PAULA TIMES - Peggy Kelly, Marianne Ratcliff and Suzi Skutley, ROTARY CLUB - Jannett Jauregui, Adrina Ramos and Elias Valdes, SOROPTIMIST INT’L - Kari Aist, Kathy Ferrier and Marilyn Harvey, SANTA PAULA ELEMENTARY SCHOOL DISTRICT - Frida Friend, Robin Holcombe and Patricia Jump, WEYERHAEUSER - Kathy Asolas, Sue Buckingham and Angelica Guillen; the Judges: Brad Branham, Brenda deJamaer and Xavier Montes; Master of Ceremonies Don Johnson; Pronouncer Shawn McMaster; the “Bee” Alondra Navarro. Thank You to our generous donors: Allison’s Country Café, Yolanda’s Mexican Café, Gary Zaparelli - Round Table Pizza, Mimi’s Café, Magic Mountain, Familia Diaz, Movieland Wax Museum, Mal and Regina King, Madeline Ricards, Raquel Michel, Spencer Gifts, Disneyland, Rose Chacon, Rick Bianchi -Centex Homes, SP Latino Town Hall Marilyn Wolever, Thea Seto, Patrice Vanlandingham, Scott Rushing, Elaine Hunt, Mendez Concrete, Inc., Skating Plus, Yvonne Rockwell, Maria Dowdy, FM Pearce Co., Ivan Cekov, Karin and Don Bowers, Michelle Crilly, Golf n’ Stuff, Torrid, Dan Robles, Friends of Blanchard Library, Regal Entertainment Grp., Anita Pulido, Silvia Herrera, Richard and Hilda Halpin, Dr. Kent Hollenback, D.D.S., Ventura Bowling Center, Milly Sorensen, Yeyo Lino, Ilene Gavenman, Lorraine Ashe, Pam Strange, Gennie Cole.Thank you to Reverend Kim, Nadine Lamanno and the board at First United Methodist Church for use of Wesley Hall; all of the helpers who provided bake sale items, set up before the bee, staffed stations during the bee and cleaned up afterwards, including: Richard Abbott, Monica Michel, Maria Dowdy, Jim Newton, Joe Lyou, Dora Crouch, Dan Robles, Ed Geis, Vanessa Mendoza, Rosanna Mendoza, Elaine Hunt, Elvira Navarro, Alma Lino, Yeyo Lino, Desiree Lino, Debbie Johnson, Lisa Guina, Leticia and Juan Valdivinos, Isaac Mendoza, Susan Branham, Carmen Guerrero, Barbara Suggs, Lydia Leon, Katie Brooks, Marie Marzec, Sue Alvarez, Beatrice Yzaguirre . Thank you to all those in the audience who stayed to cheer on the teams. Finally, a special thank you to Don and Debbie Johnson of the Santa Paula Times for their continual generosity in sponsoring our annual spelling bee fundraiser.Kathryn BornhauserLiteracy Services CoordinatorSuit doesn’t fitTo the Editor:There never seems to be a shortage of rancor in Santa Paula. In fact, most of the time, our community is over supplied. Sadly, our own city officials added to this when they engaged in a rancorous public attack upon a group of community volunteers. The language used in the publicly proposed suit against the individual members of the SPMH Hospital Board of Directors is nothing short of defamation of character. Last Tuesday evening our City Manager attempted to serve as an apologist for the language used in the proposed legal action to be taken personally against the members of the Hospital Board of Directors. His attempt fell flat.A few weeks ago when our mayor was verbally assaulted by members of the “We CARE” (about what?) group she was reportedly reduced to tears and considered resigning her post. She complained bitterly about the attack citing her many hours of community work and the personal effort she has contributed to the community. Couldn’t this group understand she was just doing her best under difficult circumstances? Her efforts on behalf of the city should be appreciated by our citizens, and she didn’t deserve to be treated so disrespectfully.What a shame that the City of Santa Paula Health Care Authority (read City Council) failed to give a similar consideration to the members of the Hospital Board.The SPMH was in financial trouble as long as 20 years ago. The Board of Directors at that time was unable to prevent or slow the financial slide of the Hospital. Nevertheless, all of the individuals serving on the Hospital Board, then and now, have worked diligently to save our hospital. The members of the Hospital Board, excepting Mr. Romney, are completely unpaid volunteers. Not a one of them got on the Hospital Board with goal of running the hospital into the ground.On the other hand, all City Council members receive a monthly stipend, access to group health insurance and monetary rewards for attending outside meetings as well as for serving on local commissions. Council members often seek to carry forward their own personal agendas. In their public attack on the members of the Hospital Board, our elected officeholders use the slander of good people as a means of grubbing for scraps left over from the hospital bankruptcy proceedings. Folks, there won’t be anything left so all of this talk of litigation was more than just ill considered, it was pointless.Where do the people serving on the SPMH Board of Trustees go to recover their good name?A better question would be how do our City Council Members measure up to their responsibilities? After all they have over time, made decisions that impoverished our city as well as failed to adequately fund police and fire services? They have squandered money on useless studies and litigation. They have allowed our streets to decay, our waste treatment plant to fall into disrepair and our public employees to be continually underpaid.Perhaps we could have the same attorney who drafted the proposed suit against the Hospital Board of Directors come up with appropriate language describing the performance of the City Council.Walt AdairSanta Paula