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November 28, 2020

Support public education, vote yes on Measure R

Support public education 

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Cabrillo College didn’t exist in 1953. Santa Cruz County taxpayers paid Monterey County for my 1955 Associate Arts degree from Monterey Peninsula College, for which I am eternally grateful. The older generations, many of them World War II and Korean War veterans, provided for the youths of our Santa Cruz County with a community college, Cabrillo College, starting in 1958. Now, as one of the older generation, I am obligated to support our Santa Cruz County youths and community members. I urge you to vote “Yes” for Measure R for there is no business, industry, or profession more important to our nation’s future than public education. Onward.

Mas Hashimoto Watsonville

Vote for Jack Gordon

I am writing to express my full support for Jack Gordon, who is running for Judge. My family and I are longtime Watsonville residents, and have known Jack for many years. Personally, I have served with him on the Santa Cruz County Civil Service Commission. I have seen his intelligence, consideration and focused reasoning in different administrative and employment law matters. In each and every situation, Jack has brought his best effort to our Commission work, understanding and appreciating the impact our decisions have in people’s lives and in their workplace. He is an exceptional listener, compassionate, strong communicator and respectful colleague. I am certain that Jack Gordon would be a terrific Judge, who would engage with fairness and dignity in his duties, and I urge you to support him with your vote.

Olivia Madrigal, Watsonville

John Laird for State Senate 2020?

Ten years ago Mr. Laird twice swore to us under penalty of perjury that he was no longer a Santa Cruz City resident and had permanently moved out from his longtime and still-existing residence on King Street with his spouse to a rented bedroom in his supporters’ residence in Aptos. He then proceeded, at great public expense and risk to us all, to illegally and unsuccessfully lose two special elections to Sam Blakeslee. He then immediately relocated back to his King Street home.

I filed a formal complaint with the Secretary of State Election Fraud Division at this time which was immediately ignored, with no investigation conducted. These actions by Mr. Laird constituted multiple and serious fraud, conspiracy and perjury felonies under our state election law for which he was neither investigated, indicted, tried or convicted for/on by anybody, unlike State Senator Rod Wright, who was convicted on multiple counts, expelled from the Senate, incarcerated and banned for life from running for any further public office for similar offenses.

Does swearing an oath under penalty of perjury to follow our laws and Constitution mean anything anymore in Surf City, Santa Cruz County and the entire 17th District… or can we just simply make up our own?

Douglas Deitch, Aptos

Medicare for All hoax 

Medicare for All sounds good and makes us all feel better. However, it lacks the infrastructure to accommodate all of the new participants. You can add 20, 30, 40 Million to health care but you need the staff and facilities for these people. None of the present plans account for this additional need. Secondly, we saw under the Affordable Care Act [ACA] that doctors and clinics turn away patients because ACA and Medicare pay so little that these doctors and clinics could not afford to treat them. Under Medicare for All, this situation will be even worse. We need to develop a plan to increase the number of doctors, nurses, facilities and other staff. One way is to underwrite the college costs for doctors such as requiring full reimbursement provided the doctor spends five years or so in community service. Something similar could be done for nurses. Thirdly, what impact will adding these many people have on a system that was paid for by its present participants and employers? Does this mean diminished coverage? Who is going to pay for these additional people who have not made any contributions? Is it the same people who have already been contributing? Medicare for All is a great campaign banner but it lacks the necessary planning to make it work. 

Bill Beecher, Aptos

Restoring the rail line

There is currently a move afoot by a woman campaigning for Los Gatos City Council to study the feasibility of restoring passenger/commuter rail over Glenwood Summit as a way to ease traffic congestion on Highway 17.

For years, former Santa Cruz County Supervisor Gary Patton and others fought against any improvement for Hwy. 17, using it as a weapon to discourage growth in the County. Today, it is high time that something is done about the traffic congestion nightmare on this major transportation artery. The gridlock that often occurs is having an adverse effect on the quality of life in the region in numerous ways.

Restoring the rail line between Silicon Valley and Santa Cruz County is worth a hard look and a great idea.

Gary V. Plomp, Gilroy 

Vote Yes on Measure R

As a homeowner in the Pajaro Valley, I encourage my fellow citizens to vote yes for Cabrillo College’s Measure R. 

Sixty years ago, far-sighted local leaders founded a community college in Santa Cruz County, and it has been a valuable resource for local residents.

I first sat in a Cabrillo classroom in 1971, noticing immediately that this was not merely an extension of high school. Standards were high and instructors were knowledgable and passionate about their subjects. The student body was very diverse. Many students were working adults and parents, learning new skills for present and future occupations. If you visit any local business, you have dealt with Cabrillo graduates.

Bonds are used to fund local institutions. Poor decisions have been made: maintenance, repair and new construction have often been delayed, until costs have doubled or tripled, and interest rates risen. That is bad economic practice.

Now is the time to act. Let’s not let a vital county resource decline. Let’s repair some of these 50-year-old buildings. Let’s support the Cabrillo that started classes at Watsonville High School and local churches in 1959. 

Please mark your ballot YES on Measure R.

David Miller, Watsonville

We are tired of paying

We are not against Cabrillo College, but we are tired of paying for more and more bonds to support them. We currently are paying for two bonds, with one going until 2039. Why would we give them another $274,100,000 dollars if they can’t take care of the infrastructure that they have? The picture of the rusty roof equipment shows me that they aren’t maintaining what they should be taking care of.

The buzz words for 2020 are affordable housing and they’re willing to make everyone’s housing (residential and commercial, owned and rented) less affordable? This bond will throw many seniors on fixed incomes into having to sell their homes and move or become homeless. All because they can’t live within their means as we all do? They should be finding private donations from people who want to have a building named after them. If you want to contribute, feel free but don’t force others into financial ruin.

The two bonds we are already paying for total to more than $200,000,000 and they want another $274,100,000. And in their bond statement, some of this will be for remodeling the new buildings that we aren’t finished paying for. Enough craziness, no more taxes. Live within your means just like homeowners have to. President Wetstein is a very nice guy, but he still lives in Stockton and is here just to get this passed. Please join us in saying No on Measure R.  Enrollment numbers are 30 percent down and with more and more online classes this amount of money just doesn’t make sense.

Kris Kirby, Aptos

Elect Steinbruner

We, the undersigned, do seriously and enthusiastically endorse Rebecca (Becky) Steinbruner for election to the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors to replace Zach Friend, and strongly urge our fellow residents of the Second Supervisorial District to do the same. It is high time for change and her voice on the board could prove to be a much-needed step toward overhauling the political situation in this county.

Shirley Coleman

Dolores Frye

Leticia Miller

Karen Miller

Denise Miller

Al Hughes

Karl Maret

Nancy Howells

George Goodwin

Rae Schwaderer

Rob Gaskill

Marilyn Garrett

Valera Templeman

Shannon Freed

Duane Thompson

Mary Thompson

Joanne Thompson

Zandra Kaufman

Debbie Hencke

Robert Nunes

Susan Stanford

Tom Evans

Margaret Evans

Monica McGuire

Jerry Ball

Nancy Ball

Sharon Nunes

Additionally, two commercial endorsements, Nutrient Concepts and Webb’s Farm Supply, are also behind Steinbruner.

Thomas Stumbaugh, Aptos

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The Pajaronian welcomes letters. Letters and columns may be dropped off or mailed to The Pajaronian, 21 Brennan St, Suite 14, 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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