Tag Archives: Bob Evans

Thanks Bob Evans and a WONDERFUL CROWD! for a great conversation – next up, Maureen Kirk, 3rd District Supervisor – February 16, noon to one pm, Chico library

27 Jan
Come on in!

Come on in!

Again I was really gratified to get a wonderful crowd for our visit with Butte County District 3 candidate Bob Evans. I was also thrilled to have three other candidates who take the voters seriously – Alan Petersen, candidate for County Assessor, Maureen Kirk, incumbent Dist. 3 supervisor, and Ryan Schohr, who wants to replace termed out Dan Logue in Assembly District 3.  It’s essential that we engage the people who want to fill these important positions, not only to find out where they stand on various issues, but to communicate to them the issues we feel are important and where we stand.

Sorry the light is bad here, I'm no photographer. There's Alan Petersen over to the right, thanks for coming in to help out Al!

Sorry the light is bad here, I’m no photographer. Bob really took charge of the room, he’s a good speaker.  There’s Alan Petersen over to the right, thanks for coming in to help out Al!

Evans led off with a quick bio, including his life with the U.S. Air Force, his involvement with Life Touch (at one time of Chico’s biggest employers), retirement, and his subsequent interest in a public service position. After running for and serving a couple of years on Chico City council, it was hard, he said, to just forget about community involvement. He talked about his position on the Alliance for California Business, a group that addresses issues relative to California’s business climate. Evans feels over-regulation is a huge issue for the entire state, keeping businesses from moving to California, and putting undue pressure on already existing businesses. “They are regulating us as if we are L.A,” he says, when our air quality here is no where near as poor or warranting of such measures.

He also talked about the “ag mitigation ordinance” that requires what he feels are onerous mitigation requirements for businesses that want to build new on open land – treating all land as agriculturally viable.

Bob’s a good speaker, he’s comfortable with people and listens well, answering questions directly, even if he had to say, “I don’t know!”  He was quick to admit when he didn’t have enough information to have a solid opinion, like on the subject of global warming. But, he reminded us, he’s learning, this was his first speaking engagement, and that he wants to know what people are concerned about. 

I can't say enough how I appreciate people showing up for this speaking tour, including Maureen Kirk, who showed up early and took good notes.

I can’t say enough how I appreciate people showing up for this speaking tour, including Maureen Kirk, who came early and took good notes. That’s Assembly candidate Ryan Shohr to the left of Maureen in the plaid shirt.  This means they care what you think, that’s what it’s all about.

On the subject of the State of Jefferson, Bob said he feels we must have better representation in Northern California. “This is a rural vs urban issue,” he opined, and he’s right, the bigger cities are down South, and get more attention and more tax money than the rest of us. Evans said he feels a serious conversation about “separation” (secession means, from the U.S. entirely) would “get their attention.” And, “if they just laugh at us, we’ll already be down the road [toward legal separation].”  

When asked what unique qualification he had for the job, Bob answered that he gets along well with people, and looks for compromise.  The next question followed the same line – how does he expect to get along with county staff? He said he’d been meeting with staff, and found they’re really ready to share information. Another person asked him about the general health of the county, and expressed concern about “true unemployment.” Bob said he’s making jobs a priority, but this conversation wandered off – we didn’t get to talk about ways we could bring jobs, or what kind of jobs we’d want. Sorry I did not pursue this, I was so busy trying to take notes, I didn’t think to ask many questions.

Bob did talk about conditions he feels are keeping jobs out of the North State – again, over-regulation, mostly from California Air Resources Board and “environmental groups” that are pursuing what Evans feels are onerous land mitigation laws. At this point he was asked what he thought of the whole global warming issue. He answered with my feelings – who do you trust on this issue? There are two camps, 180 degrees apart, equally more informed than the general public – who do you believe? Evans says he believes in conserving resources, but again mentioned, our air and water here in Northern California are still very good, and we should not be held to the onerous regulations necessary in bigger more industrialized urban areas. 

Of course the marijuana discussion came up, a curious audience member wondering what Evans thought of the new ordinance. Citing concern that young people are smoking too much pot these days, Evans praised the pot ordinance and congratulated Maureen Kirk and the Board of Supervisors for a “good job.” He also mentioned he’d been on ride-alongs with the sheriff’s department and seen areas of the county that he felt were  being degraded by pot gardens, both environmentally and civilly.

I had to laugh as he talked about the ride-alongs  – he described my house right here in Chico! He said he’d seen fences and locked gates, with dogs! Well Bob, I will say here – do not approach my gate. You will see a lock, you will see signs that threaten trespassers with physical humiliation, and you will be greeted by a snarling cur. And then there’s the dogs! I’ll also say, I’m looking for a supervisor that values my property rights. I don’t see any, I’m still looking.  

Bob has been all excited about his idea to use Chico Fire Department employees to “patrol troubled areas of town,” meaning, areas where transients are a “problem.” This idea did not go over with our group. One member of the audience described himself as a retired fire chief, retired here from the Bay Area. He tried to offer his knowledge of fire vs police training, saying fire personnel are trained to do physical first aid, but not mental. They are not trained to deal with the mentally ill. Other audience members agreed. 

Al Petersen asked a good question – what’s the overall health of the county budget? Here Evans told us what many already know – both the sheriff’s department and the behavioral health department are very undermanned. Then he talked about an issue that I had been trying to figure out how to bring up – when police or sheriff have to arrest a person who is “unsafe to themselves or the public,” including transients, they often have nowhere to take them but Enloe Hospital. I’ve heard this reported in Police Advisory Board meetings, and, when I had a friend who had to be taken to the ER, this is what I’ve seen – especially on weekends, the Enloe ER is turned into a psycho ward. And here’s the hilarious part – these people are dumped by police or sheriff, and then staff has no right to detain them or demand payment of the bill. This is where Enloe gets the figures for much of the loss they write off to the government every year. 

The county has a special psychological unit, a trained team, that is supposed to meet law enforcement at the hospital and transport these “patients” to the county mental health facility. But they are undermanned, Bob says. This is what I’ve heard from both representatives of Chico PD and Enloe Hospital. I think this is just unacceptable. I’ve seen the payroll for the behavioral health department – the director is a low-paid ($58,000/year) revolving door position, and the “staff” is made up of interns who get less than $10,000 a year, some of them as little as $1,000. I can’t believe some college kid is qualified to transport a mental patient. 

I’ll tell a story here, from the days I lived in Sacramento. I took public transportation all over, and you changed buses Downtown. I would walk up the K Street mall every morning, with a regular herd of bus commuters, to catch the crosstown lines. There I would see regularly a guy dressed in a big white bed sheet, walking calmly along with an insane smile on his blank face. We called him “Jesus,” but his name was Jerry Paddy. He spent his days strolling and occasionally begging up and down K Street, visiting the various parks, the Capitol Rose Garden, Sutter’s Fort, etc.  Nobody ever thought a thing of him, some people even regarded him with affection.

One day, a fellow walking over to visit a patient at Sutter Hospital noticed a man and woman struggling in some bushes at Sutter’s Fort. Thinking it was a sexual assault, the man confronted the pair, only to be stabbed right through the gut with a 12 inch knife. The culprit turned out to be Jerry Paddy, who explained he was having consensual sex with the woman, and when he’d been confronted, he admittedly pulled a 12 inch kitchen knife out of the sleeve of his sheet garment, and ran the man through. The man had died on the sidewalk before passersby could even react. 

This is what we’re dealing with on the streets of Chico – what, you think mentally competent people sleep in a bundle of dirty rags on the ground? It’s been discussed ad infinitum – we have a problem with mentally ill people wandering our streets. I’ve started to see them wandering my residential neighborhood, thanks to the efforts of “Our Town” to shove them out of Downtown with no regard for the consequences to surrounding neighborhoods. Without proper staffing at the behavioral health department, these people are just riding a Ferris wheel back and forth, being taken to Enloe, then waiting for the cops to leave so they can just wander off and end up in the same pile of slop a week or so later. 

I think this is a major issue in Chico. Talk about a job killer. If I was the parent of a new college student, I would not send my kid to Chico. In fact, I’m making plans to send mine out of town right now. The county and the city need to get together on this issue. I don’t want to hear one more report from one more cop who spent a week in a psychology class at Butte College, I want to hear plans to fully fund the behavioral health department and get a real director in there. Look at the salaries for the city of Chico – but the county only offers about $60,000 a year for somebody to run the mental health department? That is literally CRAZY.

Well, the meeting had to come to a close at this point, there was another group waiting at the door.  Bob Evans thanked the crowd and left us with this comment: “According to statistics, 14 percent of the electorate is engaged and educated…that includes you!” He promised, “my goal is to see as many groups as I can.” 

I had to ask Bob privately for his opinion on Cal Water’s rate hike, and I will give you that in my next installment, I got to take Biscuit for a walk. 

Drawing a line on the editorials page

14 Mar

Below is Chico Taxpayer Association board member Casey Aplanalp’s letter to the Enterprise Record, run in this morning’s paper. 

If you haven’t seen the survey he mentions, look here:

https://chicotaxpayers.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/lando-releases-survey/

The survey isn’t just leading, and it isn’t just misleading, it’s downright dishonest, insinuating that certain people and groups support the tax without asking these folks for their permission – including Larry Wahl and the Bidwell Presbyterian Church, both of whom contacted me/this blog. 

Lando will use the dishonest survey results to write his tax increase measure for the council, and I’m afraid certain members of council will try to say that’s enough to put the measure on the ballot. We have to write letters to council – write more than one letter if you feel the need –  telling them we want a petition with the legal number of signatures. We should let both Ann Schwab and Bob Evans know that if they put this measure on the ballot without the signatures, they’re going down in flames in November. 

I believe my question regarding how a tax increase measure gets on the ballot, along with a general report regarding the upcoming tax increase proposals (that’s proposals, plural…) headed for the upcoming ballot is agendized for the first meeting in April, but you’ll have to wait for confirmation from the city clerk. I’ll keep you posted. 

In the meantime, read this letter from Casey and try to search for inspiration to write your own:

We need to know more about the sales tax hike proposed by Tom Lando and Jim Stevens. This needs to see the light of day.

I have a copy of the script the survey company is using, and it’s as crooked as a rubber cane. Biased and leading. Results should be scrutinized and dismissed upon presentation.

I’ve sent Lando an invitation to present and explain his proposition publicly, which has been ignored. What is he hiding? The Chico Taxpayers Association, Butte Taxpayers Alliance, Chico Tea Party, Butte Republican Party, Butte Libertarian
Party, Young Americans for Liberty, and the local Ron Paul Support team are all opposed to this sales tax hike proposed by Lando.

Where’s the tax hike support? And where’s the coverage?

 Casey Aplanalp, Chico

Blowing money out their patoot, Part II

18 Feb

I am a woman of many moods. People who’ve known me a long time say they’ve watched me turn from a liberal to a conservative. I hate labels – those feelings have been mixed up inside of me for years, and I’ve followed one party or another because I thought they were expressing the same feelings. Over the years, I’ve realized, you can’t trust any big political party, and the bigger politics get, the less effect the common person will have.

So when Planning Commissioner and long-time gadfly Jon Luvass brought forward a “discussion” of “corporate personhood,” I was conflicted. Yes, I think “corporate personhood,” as explained to me by Ralph Nader about 1993, is bad.

“Corporate personhood” came from a legislative decision made decades ago – about 100 years ago? –  that gave corporations “human rights.”  Boiled down, this means, they can scream “harrassment” if you go after them for say, coloring the stream that runs through your town with toxic waste, or turning the air over your city into soot soup. It gives them all kinds of protections they don’t deserve, and it’s caused us a lot of problems in holding them to the laws that you and I must obey.

If you want a better explanation about this, go to www.nader.org/ – Ralph has been hashing issues like this for years, that’s why I have voted for him in every presidential election ever since 1992. 

Meanwhile, Jon Luvass has supported MoveOn.org and the Democratic Party. Hmmmm.

What Luvass, prodded forward by Ann Schwab and Linda Furr and who knows who else,  brought to the Internal Affairs Committee last week was not a discussion about “corporate personhood” but their own hypocritical diatribe on campaign spending

Our election process, he says, are being “swung” by “big big money.”

This is where I find Luvass disingenuous. This is a guy who has supported MoveOn.org since it was created, going to the first MoveOn convention and then holding a party at his co-housing community to spread the word. Luvass has also long been one of the stinking heads of the Esplanade League stinking fish, the Super PAC of the liberals. He’s closely connected to Dave Guzzetti’s “Chico Democrats,” which by the way, has nothing to do with Democracy.

Luvass had the nerve to ramble on about how these evil PACS – not his, see – are ruining Democracy. “This is a matter of money speaking louder than the mouths of human beings…” but, “I’m not talking about corporations in general (like the Esplanade League), but ‘MAJOR’ corporations…”

Well, that’s real pretty Jon, but it doesn’t carry much weight coming from a guy who bought his way onto the Planning Commission with the single largest donation allowed in a Chico City Council race.  Yep, Luvass gave Maureen Kirk $950, just short of the $1000 maximum, in the campaign directly leading to her appointing him as Planning Commissioner. 

Yes Jon, that looks really bad, especially given the fact that you had no qualifications whatsoever and didn’t even read the city code until I pointed that out to you a good eight months into the job.

Luvass acts as though butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth, but he and his friends are also quick to call in their big guns when they really need money  – the California nurses union and the SEIU were the biggest contributors to the campaign against Measure A, and they both waited until the last quarter to donate so they wouldn’t have to disclose until AFTER THE ELECTION. Same with the Esplanade League, which also refuses to disclose just  exactly where it’s money comes from.

I saw Nancy Pelosi on PBS’s MacNeil Report the other night, railing about how the Republicans’ Super PACS are just ruining life as we know it. Reporter Judy Woodruff pointed out that Obama will be going with a Super PAC. Pelosi, looking like one of those apple-head puppets, croaked back that Obama’s money is DIFFERENT!  He discloses! Yeah, just like the Chico Democrats and the Esplanade League – we won’t find out whose fist is up Obama’s ass until he’s already made his inaugural address.

So, Jon, Ann, Linda – you can save your bullshit for those ignoramuses who would listen to you.  Nobody believes you are sincere in limiting campaign money, and this “corporate personhood” discussion is just more of your whitewash.

Meanwhile, council turns a deaf ear to my request to agendize a discussion of how a tax increase measure can get on the ballot WITHOUT one shred of support from the community.  Yes, five of them can contrive to shove it on the ballot without a petition. 

Please write to council and ask them to agendize my request for a public discussion of how a tax increase measure gets on our local ballot. I’ve written a formal request to the clerk’s office, and already one member of council has answered back that he won’t discuss it until Lando comes forward with his proposal. I told this council member, I’M NOT ASKING FOR A DISCUSSION OF LANDO’S PROPOSAL. I’m asking for a discussion of HOW ANY TAX INCREASE PROPOSAL CAN GET ON THE LOCAL BALLOT. 

If they can sit around for two hours masturbating themselves with this kind of crap, they can agendize my request.

Fun and games on your dime

15 Feb

You may have read that the City of Chico Internal Affairs committee yesterday refused to recommend a Downtown smoking ban.  What you didn’t read was that they spent almost an hour and a half  leading the cancer folks on as though they might consider it.

An hour and a half of $taff time, mulling over almost identical $taff reports regarding two almost identical items (see my previous post):

https://chicotaxpayers.wordpress.com/2012/02/14/sitting-with-the-circle-of-jerks-down-at-city-hall/

The room was packed with supporters of two proposed smoking bans – one a comprehensive ban of smoking almost anywhere Downtown. The other, a redundant ban that also includes all of Bidwell Park.  There was not a full committee present – Holcombe already seems to be making his way toward the exit.

Chair Jim Walker and third leg Bob Evans made it clear from the get-go that they would probably not recommend either ban. One of the proponents actually said they already knew they wouldn’t get Item A, and most had come to address Item B. But, Walker proceeded to ask for comments regarding Item A, and took up a good half hour on it.  At one point Walker actually used the words “convince me,” even though he had made it clear that he thought the Downtown ban was an attack on civil liberties, motivated by  a simple dislike of smokers. Regardless of his opening remarks, he continued to lead this group on for an hour and 25 minutes, telling me at one point, “I think this is the best use of public salaries…” .

This pandering  is an incredible waste of $taff time. I tried to point that out but  Walker kept interrupting me. Well, let’s do the math kids. At the table sat John Rucker, at over $165,000 a year, playing secretary to the committee. Next to him sat city attorney Lori Barker, at over $190,000. Then two members of the clerk’s staff (writing the reports that Rucker will read verbatim at the next meeting), the head of the parks department, one of his rangers, and a guy from CARD.  Want a grand total on those salaries – all of which YOU pay?  Well, I don’t have the current figures in front of me, but I’ll make a shot at the general ballpark  – we’re talking almost three quarters of a million dollars in horseflesh, sitting in one room, babbling two identical items that have  already received hours of $taff time in various reports and meetings. And that’s just the salaries, don’t forget we tote their benefits and pensions.

Feel like a pack-mule? Well you should – a blind pack mule headed for a precipitous drop.

These meetings aren’t video-taped,  and the minutes are questionable – it depends on who’s taking minutes how complete they are. The clerk or her assistant tapes the meetings, but only for their own use. I’ve been to meetings that went all over town, voices were raised, huge arguments were had, and then read the minutes: a list of the items discussed and sometimes the names of any people who spoke, but nothing about what they said. Sometimes the minutes make note of whether a speaker supported or opposed an item, but that’s it. The committee members are allowed to read the minutes and ask for things to be stricken, even if they are true. The council does not allow verbatim minutes of any meeting. You figure that out.

I think these committees should all be thrown out. The reason behind committees is supposed to be airing these matters WITH THE PUBLIC.  Let me ask a stupid question: how many of you are available for an 8am meeting, Downtown?

I have been to these meetings for years. I may not have a paid job, but it’s not like I don’t have other things to do. I used to take my kids, as young as four years old, and was proud how well behaved they were and how they’d always pay attention and make the most adroit observations afterward. But frankly, intelligent humans that they are, they got sick of going – it will wear you down morally, if you don’t have enough experience to put it in perspective.

So now, I go in by myself.  Yesterday I got up at 5 in the morning in order to get my  morning chores done – I get sick of coming home at 10:30 in the morning, feeling like I’ve been running behind somebody’s truck, and find myself two to three hours behind in my day. So, by 4:00 in the afternoon, I feel pretty shagged out, but take a nap? No, I work for a living. When I don’t work, I don’t eat.

And I’ll complain here: Jim Walker treated me like shit. He doesn’t like me, and he doesn’t like what I have to say. When I tried to ask the woman from the Lung Association just how she intended to enforce this rule, Walker interrupted me and  told me I was out of line. I told him this was part of the conversation, that Bob Evans had already brought it up. He asked the Lung Association woman if she was “comfortable” being asked questions by me, and she said no,  so Walker told me to shut up, essentially.

The Lung Association bitch had made this statement: “We don’t expect business owners to enforce it (a ban on smoking in doorways Downtown)  – the public will enforce it.” Her exact words. When I tried to ask her just exactly how far she expected public citizens to go in enforcing this ban, she wouldn’t answer me. She didn’t want to say, “I don’t care if you get the front of your head knocked out, I want you to attack smokers wherever you see them.”

Evans and Walker had already said they believed the Downtown ban was excessive, that 25 feet was onerous, and Evans had already questioned whether it was enforceable. As soon as Walker told me to shut up, Katie Simmons from the Chico Chamber spoke up saying exactly what I said – neither the Chamber nor the DCBA will support this ban because, not only is it not supported by their membership,  it’s unenforceable. Several other speakers followed with the same concern, including a guy who had earlier spoken on behalf of the ban.  But Walker told me to shut up. I’m so sick of that little dick, next January will not come soon enough for me. I wish I could throw that screen door at his ass myself, the self-righteous little prick. Out with bad rubbish!

Walker did make some interesting statements. This is why I question the hour and 25 minutes of $taff time that was taken for this issue. Walker said, right off the bat, “we mix up health issues with annoyance issues…things we just don’t like.” He went on several times to say that he believed the advocates were “just trying to make smoking so inconvenient” nobody could smoke anymore. He made it clear he wouldn’t support it. But, 20 minutes later, he asked for more comments from the audience, saying, “convince me…” It went on like that for an hour and 25 minutes of a two hour meeting with another item still waiting on the agenda.

These committee meetings rationalize millions in $taff costs, for questionable results. They do not make these conversations any more accessible to the public. They instead give the impression that the public has had input when they most certainly have not. It’s just a total scam, and we pay for it.

I’ll get back to Jon Luvass’s little rant later (Item C), but right now I got things to do.

Sitting with the Circle of Jerks down at City Hall

14 Feb

Happy Valentine’s Day! This morning I’m treating myself to one of those 8am meetings Downtown. I can’t resist this meeting. It is a perfect example of the waste of $taff time that is costing us millions a year.

Today’s example is the Internal Affairs Committee. Internal Affairs is part of the city’s  internal masturbation process. I’m sorry to be crude, but this process just lends itself to potty talk.
See, the City $taff have got to stay busy. They have to provide themselves with something to do to justify those salaries, like Burkland’s, over $190,000 a year. Mr. Burkland has to look like he’s doing SOMETHING, or at least his $taff has to appear occupied, so these morning committee meetings are just fuel for their salary rationale.
Here’s this morning’s menu:

A. Consideration of Request from American Lung Association for Comprehensive Policy Regarding the Reduction of Tobacco Product Waste.
The Lung Association, also searching for ways to prove their worthiness, is asking the city to ” protect the public from outdoor secondhand smoke exposure and to reduce tobacco product waste in public areas.
I have to wonder, is the Lung Association “in on it”? Do they realize how much money this request will cost the taxpayer in $taff $alaries? As Dave Burkland points out, the city already has litter laws, they just don’t enforce them. What makes the Lung Association think they’ll enforce a redundant law any moreso than they’d enforce any other law? Who do they think is going to enforce this law, anyway – the same Chico PD who told us they wouldn’t investigate a major vandalism incident in a California Park neighborhood because they’d just been turned down for a pay increase?
I also have to ask, what’s Dave Burkland doing, allowing this use of $taff time? Is he an idiot, or is he “in on it”?  (okay, that’s a rhetorical question, the answer is “both”).
Next item,

B. Consideration of Request from American Lung Association for a Comprehensive Policy to Protect the Public from Second Hand Smoke.

Yeah, you’re reading it right. This is a redundant redundant request. Again the committee will consider “a comprehensive policy to protect the public from outdoor second hand smoke and reduce tobacco product waste.

I know, stop it! Or as Elaine would say, “Shut Up!”

The explanation here is that “The Committee agreed to pursue the issue of second hand smoke after receiving input from community groups representing businesses, health care professionals and enforcement.”

The “community groups, representing businesses, health care professionals and enforcement” amounted to less than a dozen people, actually, well, I’m guessing, exactly three people.

The third item on today’s menu was agendized by exactly one person,  city Planning Commissioner and all around pain in the ass Jon Luvass.  Here’s Luvass’ item, you’re going to love it, you know, they always save the best for last:

C. Resolution to End Corporate PersonhoodDiscussion regarding a request from Jon Luvaas to have the Council adopt a resolution urging Congress to initiate an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to end corporate
personhood. This item was referred from Council at its meeting of January 17, 2012.

See what you’re missing when you’re not sitting with me in these meetings? Total insanity, that’s right. This whole thing is nuts, and not the kind of nuts that bring $$$$ into Butte County, but the kind of nuts that load it into their 401K and take to to Costa Rica.

I’d call it a Circle Jerk, but they don’t sit around in a circle. These meetings are an absolute waste of time, and of course, wads of your money.

Oh, come on, you’re NOT THAT DUMB!

8 Feb

Last night I acted on an impulse and went before city council to ask them to agendize a discussion regarding how a tax increase measure is placed on the local ballot.

As I said, our city clerk informed me that a tax increase measure can be placed on a ballot with nothing but a simple majority of council – 4 of 7 members. Or, council can call for the proponents to carry an approved  petition and gather 10 percent of the registered voters.

So I thought I’d get this discussion going by asking council to agendize it for a near future meeting.  This issue was brought up last November, just kind of leaked around, no real details were given about the measure itself or the people who are backing it.  Since then it has been treated like some kind of state secret. I think a tax increase is something that needs the star treatment, lots of publicity, lots of public attention., lots of yap-yap.

So I asked. What I got was surprising. Two of the seven acted as though I was asking for a discussion of the measure itself. That’s not what I said. I made my self point-blank clear – I had written it down on a piece of paper aforehand, and practiced reading it to my family. My husband and teenage son were able to tell me what I was saying, but when I read off that piece of paper at council, I got dumb stares and one councilor’s opinion that  “it might be premature to discuss this proposal…”

I stood back up and  asked council if they understood my request – at this point I was feeling pretty perplexed. They aren’t stupid. They knew I was asking to discuss the procedure by which such a measure is placed on the ballot, not the measure itself. So, why play dumb? Ann Schwab tried to flat ignore my request, while Scott Gruendl said it should be agendized, but immediately launched into his own tour de force rant over the assault at Burger King. I never got an answer.

Well, I think we know why, given this morning’s Enterprise Record:

“City now operating at a loss: Chico to lose millions for redevelopment, thousands more from main fund”

Last night they came right out with it – they’ve been paying salaries with the RDA, and benefits, and pensions.  Not to mention, the bond payments on the RDA debt. Yessiree, they been buying groceries and making the credit card payment WITH  the credit card.

So, I can see why they want the tax increase, oh sure. But I don’t appreciate the way they’re going about it, kinda dishonest, using that dumb act, as if.

I have a very smart dog. Her name is Biscuit.

Yep, that's the blue ball alright.

She has her toys she likes, among them, six lacrosse balls – three white, one red, one yellow, and one blue.  And she’ll play with all of them, but if you ask her for the blue one, that’s the one you get. She’ll search the entire back yard, through brush piles and weeds and gopher holes, under cars and behind sticker bushes. She’ll bring back that blue ball every time.  She never tries to hand me a stick, or a bone, or even a white ball or a yellow ball. She never acts like she doesn’t understand.  If she can’t find the blue ball, she tells me, and we go looking for it together. But she never plays dumb, or refuses to answer.

Maybe we should give her a stint on city council, see if she’s a better listener than Ann Schwab.