Chico Chamber says if we want usable roads and responsible cops we need to shake down with a revenue measure

28 Jan

Biscuit snoops out another homeless camp in Bidwell Park.  If my husband were a member of Chico PD he’d get extra salary for Biscuit.

My husband and I noticed the bums vacated the park during the inclement weather, but predicted, correctly, they’d be back as soon as the rain stopped.


There in the front of the trash pile you can see some scorched items – my husband said it was a partially burned pillow and what looked like clothing or bedding.

As soon as I saw this, I thought of the people who were fatally burned in their tent, just a block from my house, on a chilly winter morning a few years ago. They’d been drinking heavily, fell asleep, and the camp fire they had made inside their tent had caught their bedding and immolated them.


This abandoned hobo camp is just off the main trail. in a well-worn path.

It’s also alarming because it’s within a mile of my house, in a heavily overgrown section of the park, easily prone to fire. This isn’t the first time my husband has come across the remains of a camp fire gone out of control – once we encountered a burned section of grass, at least 12 by 12 feet, right off the entrance to the park from our neighborhood.

The Ponderosa Fire this past Summer was started by a transient who was living illegally at a campground.

The City of Chico has essentially deputized park rangers, given them guns, in fact, required them to carry guns.  Critics predicted that the rangers would become part of the police force and be given other tasks around town. I don’t know if this is true, but I have yet to see or hear about the kind of sweeps they conduct regularly in Redding.

This section of park was cleaned not a month ago by a community group. That is not a solution, it’s enabling behavior. There is too much enabling behavior here. Just recently I saw a piece on the tv news about Salvation Army offering a liaison service for people who need social services. Wake UP! We already spend more than half our county budget on the social services departments, with a $63 million budget for Behavioral Health, and we still need to fund these private agencies (yes SA gets public funding) to act as liaison?

I don’t report the camps anymore – they just send the feel-good volunteer group – complete with $100,000/year staffer – to clean it up, and use it as another example of why the city needs more money. The Chamber of Commerce has launched their anticipated campaign for a sales tax increase – why would I want to give them more ammo?

What we need is a dedicated group to fight the propaganda blitz with facts.  Get your tennis rackets ready, and maybe get that old garbage bag suit you made for the Gallagher show.



11 Responses to “Chico Chamber says if we want usable roads and responsible cops we need to shake down with a revenue measure”

  1. Jane January 28, 2018 at 4:29 pm #

    Hi Juanita-
    Great post. Who is the $100,000 city staffer at the community group?

    • Juanita Sumner January 29, 2018 at 6:41 am #

      I don’t know his name, but there aren’t any Public Works staffers that cost less than $100,000/year. Then there’s the brand new city of Chico pick-up truck.

      • Jane January 29, 2018 at 8:06 pm #

        Do you have an email address?

      • Juanita Sumner January 30, 2018 at 6:15 am #

        If you have a comment you don’t want posted, you can send it to “contact us here”, at the top right corner of the blog, and I won’t post it – people send me “tips” that way. If you want to make anonymous comments on a post, you can use a fake name and e-mail and I won’t even know who you are.

  2. bob January 28, 2018 at 5:03 pm #

    How long has Simmons been in charge of the Chamber?

    She is always scheming for higher taxes.

    Isn’t it about time for some new leadership? And that would be leadership that doesn’t always look to higher taxes and more government control.

    Aren’t most of the leadership members of the Chamber really just people that suck off the government teat and are ex or current government employees, like Lando? People who spend all their lives in government, retire with a big pension, then set up a business and use their government connections to get government contracts? This is what Lando did. Or people whose businesses depend mostly on government contracts or certainly favors from politicians (like zoning ordinances, etc.)?

    I really think the name Chamber of Cronyism is far more accurate than Chamber of Commerce.

    • Juanita Sumner January 29, 2018 at 6:43 am #

      Katie’s salary is paid with city of Chico community grant funding.

      • bob January 29, 2018 at 7:53 pm #

        Well, that explains why Katie is always trying to raise taxes!

        Without a sales tax increase her fat salary may be in jeopardy.

        Considering that the City pays for her salary and I assume other Chamber expenses, it seems to me the Chamber of Commerce is just another government organization or at the very least certainly a quasi-government organization.

      • Juanita Sumner January 30, 2018 at 6:11 am #

        Yes, I believe the chamber qualifies as a quasi-government organization.

        Did you hear Sean Morgan on the Ch 7 news last night? “I don’t think you’ll see a tax increase led by the City…”

        I do believe the chamber could gather the necessary signatures by 2019, and force a special election – of course there will be plenty of money to pay for that!

      • bob January 30, 2018 at 7:02 am #

        I didn’t see the channel 7 news last night but I did take a peek at the ER and Channel 7 Facebook pages. I hardly ever look at Fakebook but was curious to see if there was any comment on this there. And there were postings on this and the comments were nearly all negative. I only saw a couple of people supporting a tax increase. And I’d bet they were government employees or ex-government employees with big pensions.

  3. bob January 28, 2018 at 5:05 pm #

    And if anyone wants to vent…here is the Chamber of Cronyism’s phone number and a couple of email addresses. Venting is good.


    • Juanita Sumner January 29, 2018 at 6:44 am #

      I guess I should add, “be polite,” or maybe just, “don’t get yourself arrested,” but yeah, these people need to hear what we think.

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