The local Tea Party Patriots are blaming bad weather for a significant shortfall, at least so far, in gathering signatures for a ballot initiative to ban the practice of “allowing taxpayer money to be funneled to politics through public employee unions’ paychecks.”
The initiative is called “Citizens Power.”
“Here in Nevada County, our goal is 8,000,” according to an email. “Because of the bad weather, we have only gotten 1,500.”
It added: “There was an article in The Union opinion section today from a retired teacher talking about how important this initiative is.”
The email asks supporters to sit in front of stores, such as K-Mart, Save-Mart, Raley’s, SPD and Grocery Outlet, to get as many signatures from registered voters as they can.
The signed petitions are supposed to be returned to the county Contractors’ Board building, as in the past, according to the email.
George Rebane, The Union’s monthly columnist, is among those endorsing Barry Pruett for county-clerk recorder, according to Pruett’s website.
Others include Stan and Elaine Meckler. The full list is here.
Let’s hope that George discloses his endorsement if he writes about the campaign in The Union.
Barry also links to his Facebook site where he writes, “Got a nice plug from Congressman McClintock tonight at the Tea Party Party!”
Barry’s wife, Kim, is a field lieutenant for McClintock.
He calls the clerk-recorder’s office “the most unstable office in Nevada County” on his website. “I will bring the revolving door under control.”
Disclosure: We donated $500 to his oppenent Greg Diaz’s campaign
I was interested to see The Union publish a letter to the editor this weekend attacking its competitor, KNCO, for airing commentator Rush Limbaugh’s show.
It went so far as to include the email address for KNCO chief executive Bob Breck for people to complain.
No rebuttal from KNCO appeared. (Now emails are being sent around the community, urging people to write to Bob, citing the letter published in The Union).
There’s also a major case of the pot calling the kettle black, since liberals in our community have been complaining (and showing up in the offices) of The Union to complain about its conservative bias since Obama was elected President. Some of the exchanges have been quite angry.
The complaints against The Union include running two monthly columns from George Rebane and Russ Steele (outspoken local conservatives) without enough counterbalance, to underplaying Obama’s election, to underplaying Sen. Ted Kennedy’s death.
I hope The Union wasn’t jealous that Breck is going to be the grand marshal of the Mardi Gras parade in downtown Nevada City instead of The Union’s editor/publisher or somebody from the newspaper.
A better choice for Grand Marshal probably would have been somebody from within Nevada City. How about somebody from KVMR, for example, or better yet, somebody from outside the media entirely?
I’ve never seen KNCO take this “in your face” approach against The Union on its programming.
The letter that The Union published is here:
“I invite you to join me in a move to bring back a balanced perspective to local radio. Rush Limbaugh has become so shrill, hateful and almost maniacal in his rhetoric against the president that even the Republican Party is wishing he would go away.
“KNCO can do better and Nevada County would benefit from a more open/even approach to national events coverage. In addition, we would all benefit from an increased focus on local events.
“If you agree, please contact Bob Breck: firstname.lastname@example.org to request a host that presents a more balanced perspective.
“Dump Rush and introduce a fresher approach, such as Tom Sullivan, who airs on KFBK from noon to 3 p.m. Tom covers a wide range of political, cultural and financial topics without taking a strong negative position. He has captured a “thinking” audience nationwide.
“Let’s also encourage KNCO to cultivate increased local programming by taking advantage of the talents of Tom, Rita, Holly, et al. There’s enough interesting things going on in the county to fill the time.
“Does KNCO have the guts to make a change that even the staff would like to see? I wonder who really makes decisions for ‘local’ radio programming.”
As the candidates dribble in for local June elections, the one people keep talking about behind the water cooler is whether anyone is going to run against John Spencer for 3rd district supervisor.
John, who is a land surveyer, is married to Patti Ingram, a title escrow officer. Patti’s family has long been involved in local, conservative politics. She was born and raised here and has been the Mayor of Grass Valley.
John was elected to serve as District 3 supervisor after Drew Bedwell resigned. He was re-elected to the position in 2006. John is very conservative politically.
Some people criticize John for:
*Being too overtly politically partisan for a position that is supposed to be nonpartisan.
*Holding political views that don’t accurately reflect the majority of Grass Valley residents. Downtown Grass Valley, for example, is left of center.
*Not holding enough “town hall” meetings in his district.
An obvious opponent is Grass Valley council member Chauncey Poston. Chauncey holds more moderate political views. He moved here in 1978.
Chauncey has been considering throwing his hat into the ring, I suspect. But when I ran into him the other night, he said he’d rather focus on his business and family.
Former Grass Valley Mayor Mark Johnson also is an obvious candidate, but I don’t think he’ll run either.
There’s a lot of mudslinging in local politics too, making the campaigning stressful. “The politics are so nasty because the stakes are so small,” as a former colleague of mine put it.
The rancor over the City Council’s decision this week to rescind the affording housing policy illustrated some discontent with the current political leadership in the city.
Grass Valley is now the only municipality in the county without an affording housing policy.
In addition, former council member Steve Enos’ allegations of Brown Act violations by the council has raised further concerns by many citizens.
“The local (political) machine got caught this time,” one reader on The Union’s website wrote.
As for the supervisor race, John has the support of Tea Party Patriots and their fundraising capabilities.
On the other hand, with the recession, it will cost less money to run an election in previous years, opening the door for an outsider.
It will be interesting to see if anybody steps up.
I’d like to research some of the admimistrative salaries and benefits for Sierra College. For example, how much does the dean of the Nevada County campus earn? What do some of the college’s other administrator’s earn? Is this information accessible on the website? A quick review did not disclose that. Also what is the role of the Trustees is approving/not approving the salaries and benefits of administrators? Given the proposed cuts at SC, I’d like to dig into this. BTW, I have a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University. What are the pay scales for “entry-level” instructors? Also, what perks, if any, do Trustees receive? I thought I heard you mention once that you were taking classes at Sierra College. How much does that cost you?
Thanks for your guidance.
But I scanned the latest figures on the unincorporated county’s sales tax receipts released Friday and noticed that the category of garden/agriculture supplies showed an 18 percent year-to-year gain — running counter to a 20 percent drop for the county as a whole.
The amount for the July-Sept. quarter for garden/agriculture came to $15,146 — still below the amount for contractors and lumber/building materials but a significant gain.
The absolute figure was higher than it was for tourism-related categories such as retail and restaurants.
The tax receipts for garden/ag includes revenue from the growing “sustainability” movement, such as growing local food.
The county Farmers Markets and CSAs are growing, as I’ve written before. The “sustainability center” in Nevada City helps support the movement.
Business services also showed a 30 percent year-to-year gain in the report.
The top 25 sales-tax producers in the unincorporated county include “Plan it Solar,” “Rare Earth” and “Grass Valley Hydrogarden,” among others.
The results are a reminder of the need to diversify our economy to guard against boom-and-bust building and real estate cycles.
The quarter sales tax report is taxreceipts.
Nevada City poet Molly Fisk is profiled in Friday’s edition of The Sacramento Bee.
“Small-town life, a red-tailed hawk’s call, love, sex, the injuries of war – Nevada City poet Molly Fisk has taken on those topics and more in verse,” the story begins.
It’s a good example of profiling our area’s talent on a regional scale.
“This world is speeding up so fast,” Fisk tells The Bee. “Poetry helps us connect with the natural world, with our own natural rhythms. It makes you feel less alienated, less isolated, less nuts.”
Fisk will join her former student, Sacramento Poet Laureate Bob Stanley, as part of the Blue Line Gallery’s first-ever poetry reading, from 7-9 p.m. Thursday in Roseville.
The winning wineries included Avanguardia, Indian Springs, Lucchesi, Montoliva, Naggiar, Pilot Peak, Sierra Starr, Smith, Solune and Szabo.Pilot Peak won the prestigious “Best of Class: Judge’s Choice” award for its port.
A list of the winners and their winning wines is here:
Avanguardia: Silver (Ampio), Bronze (Sangineto), Bronze (Premiato)
Indian Springs: Gold (Hog Wild Red), Silver (Hog Wild White), Silver (Barbera), Bronze (Cab), Bronze (Chardonnay), Bronze (Syrah Port), Bronze (Primitivo)
Lucchesi: Silver (Port), Bronze (Cab), Two Bronze (Chardonnay), Bronze (Sauvignon Blanc)
Montoliva: Silver (Sierra Bella), Silver (Aglianico), Silver (Teroldego), Bronze (Sangiovese), Bronze (Sangiovese Estate)
Naggiar: Silver (Petite Syrah), Bronze (Mourvedre), Bronze (Malbec), Bronze (Grenache)
Pilot Peak: “Best of Class: Judges’ Choice” (Porta Joyas), Bronze (Barbera), Bronze (Paramour), Bronze (Tempranillo)
Smith: Silver (Red blend), Bronze (Cab), Bronze (Primitivo), Bronze (Syrah)
Sierra Star: Silver (Sauvignon Blanc), Silver (Rhone blend), Silver (Zin), Bronze (Cab), Bronze (Cab Franc)
Solune: Silver (Tempranillo), Bronze (Cab Franc), Two Bronze (Petite Syrah), Bronze (Tempranillo)
Szabo: Silver (Syrah), Bronze (Primitivo)