From JAMES HOULE
We are in a serious and long lasting recession. City and County services to our underfunded school system, to impoverished families, and to the mentally deficient has been cut back severely. Yet our City Council members want to spend $2 million to reduce the traffic lanes on downtown State Street and plant a few trees so we will have a nice comfy country look.
As if this wasn’t strange enough, at their last meeting they were talking about buying more sidewalk cafes for our local upscale restaurants, similar to what they already did for Patrona, our most expensive eatery. They are most generous to potential Big Boxes, and still want to give $6 million in taxes revenues (from the defunct RDA Program) to provide a wonderful private driveway for CostCo and Wal-Mart customers. This last giveaway has effectively been blocked by Governor Brown as merely another piece of corporate welfare. If CostCo wants to steal business away from our existing stores, then let them build their own entrance ramp.
I think we can stop this two lane State Street scheme very quickly and the cafe al fresco notion as well. All we have to do is keep tuned in, attend their City Council meetings, and ask embarrassing questions. The City Council has little stomach for controversy.