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January 31, 2023

Letters to the Editor, Nov. 24

Bus-Trail is the best option

Bus-Trail allows the present unused Santa Cruz County Corridor to be totally Trail-Only, totally Bus-Only or anything in-between at any time. 

Those who liked the recent TIG “wannabe bus” demonstration when it was standing still or ramping up to the full 10 mph, would appreciate a more flexible genuine bus that could not only look like that and travel upon the same slice of the corridor, but travel directly to Capitola Village without requiring extra transfers. It could also safely average 70 mph 24/7 upon a dedicated lane on Highway 1 over the stretch from Watsonville to State Park Drive in Aptos. It would then have the option of entering the corridor to travel at speeds comparable to any railroad means, remain on Highway 1 or travel to Cabrillo College and beyond.

With today’s technology, Bus-Trail can do anything Rail-Trail can do, as well as offer unlimited possibilities for less than the multi-millions it would take to refurbish the outdated railroad infrastructure. Combining local and express service would allow more expeditious travel by not wasting time hassling with transfers to reach popular destinations at the time. Bus-Trail would also allow more expeditious travel between those coming and going to Gilroy or Monterey and beyond.

Railbanking allows a Bus-Trail (without ever precluding a railroad). Let’s expedite Railbanking that has evolved as a means for residents to achieve the best use of a railroad right-of-way in their community to always be useful.

Bob Fifield, Aptos

Pesticide use must stop

Nov. 20 was a beautiful morning. As I have for the last nearly seven years, I took my dog for a walk along the levee and Atri Park. Upon my return to Bronte Avenue, I was startled by the appearance of four men in hazmat gear with clear vinyl shields. They were spraying pesticides. As I approached they would not stop, so I yelled “toxic cancer-causing chemical” to them. Only when I did that did they stop. I was within 3 feet of them, as they were blocking the driveway to Bronte Avenue. I got residue from the spray, and my dog, close to the ground, got it worse. There is blowback from the sprayers they use to deny it is to deny the laws of physics. The smell was similar to ammonia.

These chemicals cause birth defects, developmental delays and disabilities in children, and cause pregnant women to miscarry. It is literally killing people.

The arrogance of the grower at Elbar Ranch should cause concern for everyone who walks along the levee at the side of Salsipuedes Creek.

The “right to farm” that Agriculture Commissioner Juan Hidalgo chants whenever he gets a chance does not give the growers the right to spray whenever and wherever and however they feel appropriate. 

No notice. No warning. No concern about pedestrians, who have the right of way on public land, or their pets.

I am making both a visit to the vet and to my doctor. If I become ill, or my dog becomes ill, I am not ruling out the possibility of a lawsuit against the grower, and whoever the hell he hired to spray.

I will not be silenced by big ag, or their allies who think you can spray toxins anywhere just to make a profit. 

Steve Trujillo, Watsonville

The Pajaronian welcomes letters. Letters and columns may be dropped off or mailed to The Pajaronian, 21 Brennan St., Suite 18, Watsonville, CA 95076. Letters and columns may also be sent via email to [email protected] Letters should be less than 300 words, and columns are no more than 700 words. All letters and columns must be signed and have an address and phone number for confirmation purposes. We reserve the right to edit and condense all submissions.


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