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Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association taking Yuba County to court over fraudulent tax revenue Measure K

27 Dec

In November the voters of Yuba County barely passed Measure K, a 1 cent/.01 sales tax increase. The measure read as follows:

To maintain and protect essential services such as 9-1-1 emergency medical/fire response; improving wildland fire containment; maintaining 24-hours sheriff’s patrol; attracting/ retaining jobs, businesses, and qualified sheriff deputies; and other essential services, shall the measure to establish a 1 cent sales tax for 10 years in unincorporated Yuba County, providing an estimated $4,300,000 annually requiring accountability, citizens’ oversight/ audits, and all revenue controlled locally, be adopted?”

California law currently requires a 2/3’s vote to pass a “special tax” for revenues that will be set aside for a specific purpose. But Yuba County ran Measure K as a general measure, only requiring 51% of the vote, even while telling the voters that the money would dedicated to public safety. You’ll note, they don’t mention services such as street maintenance or library funding, but specifically mention “emergency medical/fire response, wildland fire containment, and sheriff’s patrol…” 

There is a weird section about “retaining jobs, businesses…” – I’ll say, this measure was at the very least poorly written in a direct attempt to confuse the voters. But I think the specific mention of safety services should mean it requires 2/3’s voter passage. Of course I’m not a lawyer.

Luckily the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association has plenty of lawyers on staff, and a couple of vigilant Yuba County businessmen were quick to ask for help. HJTA retained a Sacramento law firm to file an action against the County of Yuba to stop the implementation of the tax. 

From Lou Binninger, at the Territorial Dispatch in Yuba County:

https://www.eterritorial.com/47-guest-writers/lou-binninger/14419-measure-k-challenged

On Friday December 21, 2018, the Sacramento law firm of Bell, McAndrews and Hiltachk filed an action in Yuba County Superior Court to invalidate Measure K – the Public Safety/Essential Services Protection Ordinance that appeared on the November 6 ballot. Measure K received 54.1% of the vote. The suit contends that the measure needed a two-thirds voter approval to become law.

The suit’s plaintiffs are Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association (HJTA), a nonprofit public benefit corporation comprised of over 200,000 taxpayers, Charlie Mathews, a local rice farmer and businessman, and John Mistler, former Yuba County Supervisor and owner of the Territorial Dispatch weekly newspaper. Defendants are the County of Yuba, its Supervisors, and the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration.

54.1% – no wonder the Yuba County Board of Supervisors  decided to cheat! They knew they could not get the required two/thirds. 

Binninger also raises the question of using public funds to run a tax measure campaign.

“The suit does not address the county’s biased media campaign or the use of hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to sway voters. Measure K opponents argued that both were illegal. The California Fair Political Practices Commission has jurisdiction over where monies are derived and how they are used for a campaign.”

The city of Chico is currently using hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to mount a revenue measure campaign, not only in $taff time, but in consultants. The Chico Area Recreation District has already hired various consultants, spending over $100,000 that I know of, to put their own revenue measure on the ballot. The school district has run at least four bond campaigns using taxpayer money. 

We need to hold city of Chico and CARD staff up to the law. We need to be ready to make our own complaints to the FPPC and court. And we need to be ready to take it beyond Butte County, because the county of Butte is not likely to take such complaints seriously – they’re in the same boat with Chico!

 

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Text tax dropped – what will they try next?

17 Dec

Wow, it was good to see people get their panties in a  rumple over the “text tax” – upset the lobster pot a little.

Meanwhile, according to Rueters, “protesters angry over gas taxes and the high cost of living have been blocking roads across France, impeding access to fuel depots, shopping malls and some airports.” People have been killed, I don’t know how many. An organizer complained on Deutsch Welle News that the government is leaving Parisiens like her with less money to spend, small businesses are failing as a result of both high gas prices and low sales. The French economy, she concluded, is tanking because of over taxation.  

Welcome to California. The California Public Utilities Commission, saying they want to use the money to support “low-income” programs, tried to tack another tax onto our cell service, wiggle it in among the stack of “fees” already listed in the fine print on the back of our bill. Thank goodness for the Federal Communications Commission, although, I don’t understand the ruling, I’ll take it. I don’t think they should be able to tax us by way of our utility bills, but I’m not running the circus.

And what a circus it is! Our taxes already provide transients with free cell phones, give me another straw for my camel’s back why don’t you? 

How soon we forget – I almost have. In 2012, the city of Chico tried to get the voters to approve a tax they’d been collecting illegally, a cell phone tax. Even after the tax had been declared illegal by way of a lawsuit in the 1990’s, cities all over California were still collecting it, the same man had to sue each city individually, including Chico, to make them stop collecting it. Instead of stopping collection, and refunding the money to users as is the law, current city councilor and former mayor Ann Schwab wrote a measure for the 2012 ballot to trick voters into making it legal. 

When friends and I approached voters at venues like the Chico Farmer’s Market, we were shocked to see how shocked people were about this tax – they’d never looked very closely at their bills. And you had to look very closely. So they couldn’t believe the city was actually taxing their cell phone usage, on a percentage of the total bill. They got mad pretty fast. The measure failed. The city had to give refunds. 

That scam and this recent ploy by the CPUC to tack another tax onto our phone bills reminds me – they know what’s legal and illegal, and they don’t care. They will try anything to get more revenues. Right now the city of Chico and CARD are using taxpayer money to hire consultants who conduct “surveys” and write leading ballot measures to try and trick the voters into raising their own taxes. Don’t fall for it. And write your letters to the editor now, tell them you’re not falling for it. Maybe we can save them (ourselves) the cost of another ballot measure.

 

Garry Cooper: “Ask them where all the money you paid already went.”

11 Oct

When I attended a Finance Committee meeting a couple of weeks ago, to hear Mark Sorensen’s plans to foist a bond on us for more pension fodder, I tried to raise a few questions about how our streets and roads are maintained now, how that’s paid for, and why the taxes we already pay are not sufficient. I asked about new roads I saw going in at new subdivisions off Hwy 32 and Bruce Road, and about road widenings provided for those subdivisions. The road widenings on Hwy 32 and Bruce were specifically necessitated by the Forgarty and Meriam Park subdivisions, as per a threatened lawsuit from CalTrans.

Before chair Mark Sorensen could tell me to shut up, I got staff to report that the Forgarty streets were paid for with $6 million in Redevelopment Agency funding, or RDA. RDA is borrowed bond money, it’s estimated to cost $3 in interest for every dollar spent. 

I have to wonder, how much RDA money went into those new streets at Meriam Park?

Soooo many questions – and too many people like Sorensen telling me “that’s enough, Ms. Sumner!” (Ah, in friendlier days, it was “That’s enough Juanita!”)

That meeting was pretty contentious. When tax advocate Stephanie Taber went on a ramble about how “the liberals”spent all the money and that’s why we need a new tax for street maintenance, committee member Randal Stone came across the table at her, looking like he wanted to grind her bones to make his bread, saying, “I don’t know which council you’re talking about, but we inherited the streets…” 

All I know is, the city of Chico has come after three of my houses in the county, telling me and my neighbors we’d get better services if we’d agree to annexation. We weren’t really told our rights – it’s actually doable to fight annexation, a neighborhood protest could overturn it. But we were led to believe it wasn’t fightable, so we rolled. I remember Dan Nguyen-Tan telling me, “just think, you’ll be able to vote in city council elections…”

And then we watched the streets in front of all three houses go to hell without maintenance. Here’s the thing – at House #2, the county started a resurfacing job. We were right off Palmetto, and the county had come in, taken it down to the base, and was about 2/3’s of the way through the job when the city annexation went into effect. They supposedly had an agreement that the city would redo gutters, curbs, sidewalks and the ends of driveways, which were left hanging a good 10 – 12 inches above the surface of the new street. We waited and waited, but the city didn’t come. We used our neighbor’s sideyard, with permission, to  get into our driveway. Three households driving across this woman’s side yard to access their houses. 

And then one night a neighbor on our street had a stroke. The ambulance could not get to her driveway, and had to run across neighbors’ yards with the gurney to get her out. She was about 95 years old. She died.

I called the city to tell them what happened, and the  guy who answered the phone was very flustered and apologetic – he didn’t know our street had not been completed.

Welcome to the city of Cheeeko!

The city has long had a policy of pay the pensions first, and worry about service later. In about 2006 then city manager Tom Lando floated a memo of understanding, signed by council, linking city salaries and benefits to “revenue increases, but not decreases…” 

Read that a  couple of times.

Salaries went up, 14, 19, 22 percent! Every year, until we figured it out. We started a collective bitch. The council responded by signing new mou’s – this time, they agreed to pay the employee share of benefits. For years management, along with PD and Fire, paid nothing, absolutely nothing, toward pensions of 70 – 90 percent of their highest years wages. Salaries had gone up – for example, Lando’s salary went from about $65,000 a year to over $100,000. By the time he retired he was making about $180,000 a year. His successor came in at $190,000/year. Now Mark Orme is making over $220,000 a year. 

We raised the collective bitch again, and they agreed to pay some of their benefits. Oh my, 4 percent! Well aren’t you special! So council gave them raises to cover the new payments. All’s well that ends with a  good public screwing!

We pay over 30 percent of their benefits now, add their 4 – 9 percent, and CalPERS wants 50 percent. For now – as time goes by, with CalPERS questionable investment policies, they will eventually want the full 100 percent. So begins the arm-wrestling match over who pays.

Mark Sorensen wants the taxpayers to foot the bill. Ask him why – I’ll answer that – because Mr. Sorensen has wrangled himself a sweet little job as city manager of the nonsense town of Biggs. That makes him a ward of CalPERS. While he doesn’t make half the salary Orme makes, he still depends on those benefits, he’s  got a growing family and a big old gated mansion to take care of. So he’s a soldier for CalPERS. 

The consultant who attended the meeting had all kinds of ideas about getting the public to go along with this scam. But his one warning was, tax measures are hard to pass, and opposition can overturn their little rowboat. The consultant actually suggested that they identify possible opponents and try to smooth them over – promise them stuff!   Get somebody else from the community to invite them out for coffee and snacks, and try to talk them out of opposing.

And, like consultants I’ve listened to at Chico Area Recreation District meetings, he said it was important to keep the measure a secret as long as possible, while surveying selected recipients – they use demographics to find out who is most likely to go along, and they call those people. One CARD consultant said it was very important not to include negative comments in surveys. 

At that point, having wasted enough of my morning, I got out of my chair, picked up my stuff, smiled at Sorensen, and walked out of the little stuffy room. As I walked out I said, very clearly, “there will be opposition, you can count on it.” 

And I was right. I’ve never met Garry Cooper in my life, I’ve never spoken to him, he’s never come to my blog or commented on my letters when we had Topix. So I was surprised and glad when he wrote the following letter to yesterday’s Enterprise Record.

 

The city of Chico wants to ask you to pony up tens of millions of dollars to repair the roads.

Ask them where all the money you paid already went. They will point out that about 80 percent of your money went to salaries of the public unions who, upon every election, donate generously and tout their valuable “endorsements” to the candidates most likely to give them better hikes in wages and benefits.

For instance, you have firemen in Chico bringing in over $200,000 and with base salaries of over $150,000, who are allowed to retire at age 55 with 90 percent of that for life. Most have rental homes and IRAs due to their generous salaries. You, the working class hero, who must work until 65 to get your average $1,200 Social Security retirement, are being asked to pony up more. Is that fair?

Sure, they will claim firefighting is dangerous, but so is roofing, operating heavy equipment, truck driving, and working on oil rigs. Just the stress of struggling by the average Joe in Chico whose salary is in the $30,000 range puts more pressure on one’s heart than those who hop in their $60,000 pickup and tow their $50,000 RV to fish on their days off after collecting their rents from you.

I have no problem with wealth and income, but getting your riches on the backs of the the poor by bribing politicians is wrong. These union agreements are illegal and voidable.

— Garry Cooper, Durham

Don’t be fooled by city’s campaign to raise taxes

2 Oct

When I got home from that Finance Committee meeting last week I took a look at the city’s most recent budget, approved unanimously last June by a city council that had already drank the $staff koolaid. Then I wrote a letter about what I learned to the Enterprise Record.

At the September Finance Committee meeting assistant city manager Chris Constantin reported that Chico’s older neighborhood streets have been neglected in favor of  streets in newer subdivisions. “Money that comes available is steered toward roads that are in better shape, rather than replacing ones that have effectively failed.”

Staff reported $6 million in RDA funding was used to put new streets in the subdivision on Hwy 32 east.  So, the city is borrowing money at a rate of $3 for every $1 spent to build new roads for developers, while we in older neighborhoods will drive over potholes that void the warranty on our tires.

Council and staff want a revenue measure for “street maintenance”, but whose streets are we talking about?

The city already taxes our utility services, for “use of infrastructure”. $6,674,000 in Utility Users Tax added to our PG&E, landline and water bills. $845,000 in franchise fees added to our cable tv bills, $675,000 to PG&E, and another $800,000 to garbage. Another $7,490,000 added to our vehicle license fees. $7,597,000 in property taxes.  Over $2,000,000 a year in gas tax. Shouldn’t  these revenues be directly applied to the streets?

Where does the money go? Well, for example, roughly $2,000,000 of approximately $2,700,000 in annual state gas tax receipts is transferred into the salary and benefits pit known as the General Fund. Staff has also created a special fund to pay down their $180,000,000 pension deficit, council approving a $1,000,000 fund transfer earlier this year. That amount increases annually.

No to revenue increases, yes to more accountability Downtown.

 

 

 

How long do you think the city will hold Upper Park hostage for a revenue measure?

31 Jul

The horrific Carr Fire up the road in Redding has me wondering – what would have happened if the wind had been blowing in the opposite direction two weeks ago when Upper Bidwell Park caught on fire. The winds drove that fire up the hill, threatening a subdivision and other residences along Hwy 32. What if the wind had shifted toward Chico, the densely populated neighborhoods of Canyon Oaks and Cal Park would have been right in the path of the fire.

As overgrown as the park is these days, hip high dead grass standing in fallen branches and under deteriorating trees, a fire could charge right into the heart of old, overgrown neighborhoods and make it’s way from treetop to rooftop all the way across Chico.

You don’t see that happening? Neither did I until I saw the pictures from Santa Rosa,  and now Redding. In 1991 it was the Oakland Hills.

I wondered what the law is regarding fire clearance, not just around homes, but along public roads and waterways. I found Cal Fire makes very good and clear ” recommendations “, but that’s all they are. The state relinquished responsibility for wildfire prevention to local jurisdictions – like Butte County and city of Chico – not only to make the laws but to enforce them.

So it’s no wonder Bidwell Park and other city properties are, by definition, Fire Hazard Severity Zones, “based on factors such as fuel, slope and fire weather…” Last year, the city of Chico, in direct contradiction of recommendations that are actually THE LAW in places like Tehama County, hired a contractor after July 1 to mow city property at the corner of Bruce Road that was in violation of the city’s own weed abatement ordinance. The city always has numerous properties listed on their own annual “Weed Abatement and Compliance”, along with Chico Unified and Enloe Hospital. Every year they threaten themselves with fines – well, us, actually – and then wait until the last possible moment to get them mowed.

My husband and I happened to be driving by at about 3 o’clock on a hot July afternoon, when we saw a crew unloading a big mower machine on to the city lot.We were shocked – in Tehama County you’re not allowed to mow after 11 am because of the ease of starting a fire in dry grass.

So we weren’t surprised when the news announced Chico Fire Dept had been dispatched to that scene for a fire that threatened to jump the intersection toward the construction site across the intersection.

Nor were we surprised to hear that the contractor had not been cited. Which kinda sucks, because a man is still sitting in federal prison for starting a fire in Tehama County that caused millions and killed three people. He had put his mower away hot and his shed had caught fire, setting  half the county ablaze.

So the city of Chico, through blatant negligence, has set the stage for  a Redding-esque fire in our town. And then City Council essentially lit the match when they unanimously approved a “shelter crisis designation’ that allows the homeless to sleep in parks and school grounds.

The cause of the Carr Fire has been reported as a car malfunction. A car pulls along the side of an overgrown highway and catches on fire. I watched a car catch fire in a parking lot and a car caught fire down my street. Within seconds  both cars were fully involved and threatening nearby cars/structures. If that happened on Vallombrosa or any other streets along Bidwell Park we’d have an inferno.

For about 12 years now the city has admittedly deferred maintenance on the park while continuing to hand out raises and pay the lion’s share of the pensions. Earlier this year Park Director Linda Herman said she needs a revenue measure to do her job – her $130,000 plus comp package isn’t enough!

Acknowledging the current disgraceful condition of our park, Herman recently told the local paper she is looking for a grant to maintain the park. See, they spend a hundred million dollars  a year on salaries, benefits , and hot water for the cops and fire department, but have no money to actually DO anything.

Are we just stupid , or what? If you’re not stupid, write a letter to council and ask them how long Upper Park will be held hostage for a tax measure.

 

Council refers revenue bond measure to Finance Committee, Finance Committee cancels all upcoming meetings until September. What do you think that means?

27 Jun

This morning I attended the monthly City of Chico Finance Committee meeting because council has directed the committee to vet a bond measure for “street improvement.” Council member Mark Sorensen made the suggestion in response to councilor Karl Ory’s suggestion that the city put a sales tax increase on the November ballot. 

In her column in the cat box liner known as “Chico News and Review,” editor? Melissa Daugherty suggest the vote “went along party lines,” and the “conservatives” voted down Ory’s suggestion. What a laugh – there aren’t any conservatives on Chico City Council. 

It comes down to common sense – the voters have made it pretty clear they will not support a sales tax increase. More important, local business owners are screaming NO! – Chico retail is already suffering death by a thousand cuts, who needs a sales tax increase?!

Funny this suggestion comes from Chico Chamber of Commerce – until you look at their membership – mostly non-retail!

So Sorensen suggested a bond measure and sent it to the Finance Committee for discussion.

Except there won’t be any discussion of this measure until September, because Administrative Services Director (formerly known as Finance Director) Scott Dowell talked the committee into cancelling the July and August meetings. 

I’ll say for Morgan, he wanted to have the July and August meetings, he said the public would want to be in on the  discussion. But he sat there while Dowell essentially cancelled the meetings. Committee member Randall Stone seemed to go along more willingly with the cancellation. Committee chair Mark Sorensen, who suggested the measure in the first place, was absent because of an “emergency situation” in Biggs, where he yanks down over $100,000/year plus publicly paid benefits as Biggs’ city manager. 

You know how it is, you can’t have your dick in two places at once.

You realize, that means the discussion goes behind closed doors. In fact, while they wouldn’t discuss the bond measure at today’s meeting – they’re not allowed to discuss stuff that’s not on the agenda – Assistant city manager Chris Constantin tried to take it up after the meeting had been adjourned and almost everybody had left the room. Constantin immediately pulled Mayor Sean Morgan aside and started whispering, essentially, what did Morgan want? Morgan started to suggest that Constantin bring forward all possibilities for funding road work in Chico, and Constantin was telling him that he will be working with the public works department to come up with a figure. 

“It will be at least $100 million…” was the last thing I heard Constantin say aloud as I pulled my chair and my notebook up to the table. Constantin lowered his voice to almost inaudible and turned his back to me. I moved closer and asked, “is this a private conversation? Am I allowed to listen? I thought by the way you were whispering you don’t want me to hear what you’re saying?”

At that point Constantin turned to me and assured me it was not a private conversation. But the conversation ended, and Constantin left the table to approach Chamber of Commerce maven Jolene Francis. From what I could overhear, he was asking her how they would switch from a sales tax increase measure to a bond measure. But I was in a hurry to go  back to work, so I let it go.

This is how they run our town behind our backs. I’m pretty certain they would have talked about the bond a lot more today if I hadn’t been there – there was no other member of the public present except for pro-tax cheerleader Stephanie Taber.

I’ll tell you what was also funny – Dowell’s finance report was nothing but KUDOS! Budget right on schedule! Revenues up three percent! $11 million more in cash flow than last year! Sales tax revenues up 6 %! Kinda makes you wonder – why would we need a revenue measure?

But you have to read between the lines. Most of the report was about supplemental allocations and budget transfers – the budget means nothing, they spend money however they want. When they can’t pay salaries in one department they just  steal the money from another department. That’s why there’s no money to fix the streets, and the sewer fund is so flat the city is actually entertaining a hook-up with Paradise – 20 miles east of Chico, in the foothills.

Before he was elected to City Council, Mark Sorensen blogged about all the money the city was stealing out of the sewer fund to pay pensions – you won’t find that blog online anymore, and you won’t get Sorensen to talk about the sewer fund.

Dowell also announced, last year was a record year for parking fines! But he opined, fiscal year 2018/19 won’t bring in as many parking revenues. He said, “I’d like to believe people are becoming cognizant of the laws…”

You know the only place they enforce parking is Downtown? But they still have record parking fines? I was reminded of a trip I took Downtown to deal with PG&E. As I stood in the pee-stinking Downtown PG&E office, I watched a family park their car, put change in the meter and walk into the building. They were setting up PG&E for their college kid. The woman watched as a parking attendant walked up and placed a ticket on their windshield. She expressed disbelief as her husband went out to see what that was about. He approached the attendant, and then he got in his vehicle as the attendant took the ticket off his window. He moved the vehicle slightly, got out, watched the attendant walk away, and came back inside. She had informed him that his vehicle was a few inches out of the parking space, and when he’d protested she’d offered to let him fix it. So he moved his car about an inch, I mean, I couldn’t even see any distance, and she tore up the ticket. He was really angry about it, but afraid to disagree with a woman who could give him a ticket out of spite. 

The parking laws have not changed Downtown, it’s the method of “enforcement” that has changed. The private parking enforcement  company that the city hired is paid based on how many tickets they hand out. That’s incentive. I don’t know how this is legal, but the chief of police in San Luis Opispo had to leave his job because he offered his patrol teams pizza as a reward for tickets.

The problem we have here is a city who knows they are acting illegally but waits for some citizens’ group to pony up money for a lawyer to call them on it. They’re absolutely desperate to get money to pay down the pensions, because most of our council members are pentioneers, or are married to pensioneers.

We will assume that the city will have a bond measure ready for either the November ballot or a special election in an upcoming year. We need to let them know – especially those who are running in November, we could recall anybody who supports this revenue measure. The Reform California people successfully recalled the legislator who put the gas tax – SB 1 – on the legislative agenda. 

We also need to let them know, we can come up with a measure of our own – to dump the Utility Users tax. That’s $7 million a year they tack onto our PG&E and Cal Water bills. They add unknown amounts to our bills with their shake down “franchise fees.” 

Write those letters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We have to watch the city of Chico for the illegal use of taxpayer money to promote their revenue measure

24 Jun

The other day I was saying we need to watch the city of Chico for signs they are spending taxpayer money to push their revenue measure – here’s an article about the state of California using public funds to defeat the gas tax repeal:

http://sacramento.cbslocal.com/2018/06/19/gas-tax-opponent-sign-controversy/

“Under California Government code, officials cannot spend taxpayer money  ‘..to support or oppose the approval or rejection of a ballot measure, or the election or defeat of a candidate, by the voters. ‘   according to California Government Code 54964.”

I’ve seen the signs, and it’s obvious they are part of a campaign to defeat the repeal. The projects they are trumpeting about are band-aid patch jobs. Take Chico, for example. A year ago the Enterprise Record reported, “Chico’s obsolete, deficient bridges need attention.” 

https://www.chicoer.com/2017/08/12/chicos-obsolete-deficient-bridges-need-attention/

Many of the city’s bridges are no longer functional, and a few have deficiencies needing attention, according to Caltrans inspection reports from 2016.”

The article describes the condition of the old Guynn Avenue bridge – “The narrow Guynn Avenue bridge over the Lindo Channel in Chico features rusted metal, crumbled railings, and grape vines climbing up the girders.” The reporter, observing a truck with a trailer crossing the bridge, adds, “ The bridge creaks and shakes under even the lightest loads. ”   He also says the bridge will be replaced, but not when.

I don’t remember hearing anything about that bridge being replaced, but I do remember city public works staffer Brendan Ottoboni  saying at a recent meeting that they were dropping a whole list of projects because there was no funding.

Right now the city is undertaking 4 inch scrape and slop jobs on higher visibility roads like Cohasset and Esplanade. The contractor, Rene Vercrussen of Knife River Construction, says these jobs are being paid for with gas tax proceeds.  Why not replace some of the bridges listed in that story?  I know for certain the bridge between East First Avenue and Floral is in similar condition to the Guynn Avenue bridge, and the same goes for the bridges on Pine and Cypress at Humboldt. 

I believe they are working on Cohasset and Esplanade because they will be seen.  I realize, those roads are heavily used, but tell that to somebody who has to cross one of those bridges every day to get to work, get their kids to school, and get groceries and other supplies. 

And, I believe those “repaving” jobs are not being properly done, we’ll see if they last until the election. 

The Repeal California people have a good argument to make about the use by the state of public funds to promote a tax measure. State staffers are spending thousands of dollars on signs that promote the use of the gas tax, that’s obscene when you consider these high-profile projects are a drop in the bucket. 

I believe the city of Chico will pull the same sort of stunts – they want not only to keep the gas tax increase but float a local bond measure for street improvements.    We have to call them on it. 

Get more information about supporting the gas tax repeal at 

http://www.reformcalifornia.org/