Recent Comments:



  • "We have the most expensive, least effective school system in the U.S.! Our school systems need to tighten their belts and spend money on effectively teaching our children, not building new empires and increasing cushy wages rewarding inefficiency."

    grayotter commented in:
    Say no to Measure L on 2014-11-01 06:56:14
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  • "Regarding signs in and around the city has gotten out of control, I do have knowledge from the inside that there has been calls to the Police Dept with threats and demands from a certain female council member that Jim Hill signs be removed at once, who the heck does she think she is? I can tell you that there are no police officers out telling people to put up signs in their yards. The police have stayed very quite on this, the POA endorsement says plenty."

    Girlscout commented in:
    Arroyo Grande needs a financial audit on 2014-11-01 06:42:43
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  • "Very elderly drivers are an easy target compared to the dummies who drive while texting and talking with their cell phones in their hands, and those who drive drunk. Based on reported accidents, it appears that the phone users and the drunks are a far greater menace than the elderly. There are many people who should not be driving. I have known older people who should not be driving, and others who drove very safely and competently at a very advanced age. It is not appropriate to single out one group of problem drivers to try to get off the road and ignore the others."

    mbactivist1 commented in:
    90-year-old slams car into man’s leg, Morro Bay liquor store on 2014-11-01 06:18:34
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  • "At the Rotary Club only Jim Reed and Pam Avila said they would oust Jim App. John Hamon and Steve Gregory even went so far as to state they thought he was doing a good job?? On what planet are they living? Anyone who votes for Hamon or Picanco would have to be brain dead and clueless. Steve Gregory seems like just another one of the good ole boys. We need change from top to bottom and the new councils first action should be replacing the city manager, the city attorney and reducing the staff. A city the size of Paso does not need a bloated city government."

    poolboy commented in:
    Paso council race almost seems civilized on 2014-11-01 03:47:11
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  • "Google Oil by Rail in California...I think it's in my post. It details the issues with first responders and their training. My issue is the construction of a Rail Terminal Project which would bring 80 car tankers into their facility 5 times a week. The added "touch" associated with oil by rail vs their current pipe line adds to potential troubles. The CPC 1232 Tanker cars I have learned from another reader will not require "rail bit" to make the product flow should the source be tar sands (Phillips is literally all over the map) as to what and where the crude will be coming from. But if the its heavy crude with the consistence of "peanut butter" the rail cars will have to be fitted with heating coils so that they could be emptied. I would think that this adds safety as well as health related problems due to fugitive fumes and potential spill. The refinery currently uses emission credits or intends to use them to mitigate the increased diesel pollution. Credit work for them, but the toxicity will be incremental. The APCD in SLO should be a source of data."

    laurance commented in:
    Phillips 66 rail spur project is wrong for SLO County on 2014-11-01 00:23:29
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  • "Trees are not forever. Especially these Ficus trees. The city and many other municipalities have had priors with this species of Ficus. Several others along this stretch of Higuera over many years have succumbed. Old, established Ficus do not take well to ANY root pruning or root damage. They generally will begin a path of steady decline after receiving such treatment that can ultimately lead to structural failure of the root crown. One must look beyond the emotional connection and be realistic and tap into known characteristics of this tree type. The risk of root damage and alteration of the existing conditions around this specimen during the construction of the newly proposed infrastructure is huge and very likely. After spending such a large amount of money, it's going to look pretty irresponsible if this tree declines or fails and the City ends up having to replace it with a specimen as proposed by staff. Regarding the cost of removal being $25k. The actual tree and stump removal is likely a small fraction of that total cost with the greatest burden falling on the replacement of infrastructure to ADA and UBC codes. Curbs, gutters, and sidewalk are not cheap."

    Side_Show_Bob commented in:
    SLO workers, committee battle over crooked tree on 2014-10-31 22:39:56
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  • "While I believe the concept of punitive damages has raised the cost of everything and stifled a bunch of creativity, the fact that we can be spanked financially for driving while drunk/old/texting/whatever ought to serve as a reasonable deterrent. I recognize that it doesn't. Perhaps a couple of Betty White types taking the bus to the poorhouse after driving through the front window of the hair salon would help grandma WANT to get out from behind the wheel. My point is that giving people an incentive to do right will work much better than more regulation."

    racket commented in:
    90-year-old slams car into man’s leg, Morro Bay liquor store on 2014-10-31 21:13:48
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  • "The kind of audit they need is a forensic audit, which will include looking for evidence which can be used in court. The way financial audits usually work in government agencies varies greatly in their findings. I know of one local agency who would just give the auditor the books they wanted to show him/her. Most of the time, the auditor did not ask for other figures. I think this is because they want to have the agency as a return client. So it needs to be a truly independent auditor who has a record of finding corruption which can be prosecuted in court."

    MaryMalone commented in:
    Arroyo Grande needs a financial audit on 2014-10-31 20:51:44
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  • "I am not saying that driving is a right, but that fair and equal due process is a right. I probably should have been more specific in stating my argument, which is that making people go in every 3 years after 70 is a violation of that. However, if we want to make everyone go in every 3 years, or ideally someone could come up with something more creative, then that would be different. Creativity should be key though, because despite what public safety officials say about DUI laws, they do not appear to have served public safety AT ALL. They will tell you that since 1982 that the number deaths has decreased significantly. What they will not tell you is that the percentage of deaths from alcohol related accidents to all deaths from traffic accidents has not changed by even a point. This indicates that the reduction is deaths is because cars are safer, not because of DUI laws. And that is despite the fact that they have continuously broadened the definition of what is an "alcohol related accident." Sometimes they will use this statistic, but when they do it is always in the context of a few years which they choose in order to be able to cite the desired outcome."

    mkaney commented in:
    90-year-old slams car into man’s leg, Morro Bay liquor store on 2014-10-31 20:17:58
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  • "I don't always agree with Matt, but on this one I am finding it hard to disagree with him. My gut feeling is that Cuesta is shooting for the moon on this one. I have asked but have yet to be able to determine exactly (and I mean exactly) what this money will be spent on. Just a lot of generalities. If you ever worked in the corporate or governmental world, you probably have a good idea how these budgets are created. Everyone makes a wish list for their pet projects with no real fiscal restraint. If push comes to shove (in the corporate world, at least) where you have to defend your individual project, you have to come up with a detailed cost/benefit analysis that passes the smell test. Again, my gut feeling is that if Cuesta gets this money they won't require serious scrutiny on the projects."

    JMO commented in:
    Say no to Measure L on 2014-10-31 20:07:32
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  • "You are right! JB Bronson. How can a citizen of Paso Robles still vote for these incumbents? It's amazing there are citizens still willing to vote for Mr. Hamon and Mr. Picanco after their past blunders while on the city council. Is it okay ? When the city council allowed the police chief fiasco costing the taxpayers $250,000 plus benefits, the ticket quota that a police officer who notified city officials of a government code violation. of course,the city settled that case out of court for another $125,000 of taxpayers money, the Nacimiento Water Pipeline Project costing Paso Robles taxpayers $200 million plus without voters approval. Now, there are some glitches with the Nacimiento pipeline needing repairs, No water treatment plant prior to approving the Nacimiento Water Pipeline Project. The citizens of Paso Robles were promised 4,000 acre feet of Nacimiento water but couldn't due to not having a water treatment plant built. In the nutshell, we are paying more for less water. Obviously, this current city council lacks sagacious managerial decisions and it goes on and on with other blunders not mentioned. Yet, there are still clueless people out there that think this present city council is doing such a great job. Good grief !,wake up !"

    pasoobserver commented in:
    Paso council race almost seems civilized on 2014-10-31 19:49:44
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  • "In an editorial it was pointed out that tenured professors at Cal Poly with doctorates were paid less on average than tenured instructors at Cuesta -- many of whom do not hold doctorates. Is that true?"

    SamLouis commented in:
    Say no to Measure L on 2014-10-31 19:27:07
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  • "Absolutely not. While I have not looked at a map of CA community colleges, I suspect the great "majority" do not attract new high school graduates from outside the county to: 1.) Hopefully gain admittance into a highly impacted school like Cal Poly and/or 2.) allow one to live in a fairly safe and naturally beautiful environment. In other words there's not a huge number of new high school graduates from SLO County flocking to enroll at Hartnell College in Salinas or Pierce College in Woodland Hills. What truly would be interesting would be to compare the finances of schools like SB City College or SD City College to Cuesta. Your "argument" that Cuesta is doing things right because it had not passed a bond is absurd. I think if Cuesta had the trust of county voters, if Cuesta worked with the state to deal with Cuesta being used as a feeder and if the bond amount was something more realistic, it would have passed a bond years ago."

    SamLouis commented in:
    Say no to Measure L on 2014-10-31 19:24:01
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  • "Dave, although I will be supporting Measure L, the one thing he got correct is that 80% of the annual budget is going towards salaries, benefits and pensions. That is not out of line with other institutions. It's a people intensive industry and can't be done without instructors, administrators and staff. The Cuesta budget is available at their website online. I hope everyone will support this measure. I hope everyone also realizes that local high school students get their first year's tuition free thanks to a generous donation earlier in the year. Cuesta is a great institution and deserves our support."

    taxpayer commented in:
    Say no to Measure L on 2014-10-31 19:15:16
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  • "My prediction: Jim Reed and John Hamon will win. Bye bye, Mr. Picanco. I won't vote for Hamon or Picanco. Martin seems like a straightforward guy, though. Hamon bent over backward to support Lisa Chitty (remember that kiss a$$ op ed in the Fibune?!) and Picanco just needs to GO!!"

    pasoparent5 commented in:
    Paso council race almost seems civilized on 2014-10-31 19:15:02
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  • "Bull manure. First, the decisions to defer facility maintenance year after year to "balance the books" is unbelievably wrong and ultimately hideously expensive. That's very poor stewardship of taxpayer-owned resources. That makes me question the competency of those in charge, from the head of facility maintenance to the president. Second, a skilled maintenance head is going to have the ability to plan and piece together a maintenance group that will be able to tackle enough of these "capital projects" to keep the campus' head above water from a maintenance standpoint. A carpenter is always going to prefer a soft job over scraping a roof, but if scraping a roof is what's needed, then that's the job at hand. EXCEPT of course there is the matter of trade unions and the way around that is to terminate the carpenter so a laborer could be hired to do the tough job. Third, to suggest Cuesta is "doing something better than the rest of the system" because they have not passed a bond is utter malarkey. Cuesta has not passed a bond (and they most certainly have tried) because they're not trusted; because they almost closed altogether; because the existing SLO campus is underutilized; because they have never made it clear exactly where the money would be going; because of bad past decisions (deferring maintenance, building a performing arts center, etc.), because they will not address the number of out of county students who treat Cuesta as a feeder to Cal Poly, because of the amount faculty and staff are paid and because of absurdly high bond amounts."

    SamLouis commented in:
    Say no to Measure L on 2014-10-31 19:00:27
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  • "Bike routes are extremely expensive to build. (Relabeling wide shoulders as bike routes requires the existence of wide shoulders.) While I am not against doing that, there is a much cheaper way to improve safety for cyclists. Education (both cyclists and motorists.) To ride safely, one has to know the laws and obey them as they were designed with the idea of creating a traffic flow system that is as predictable for all users as is possible. Too many cyclists either don't think that traffic laws apply to them or excuse breaking them by not believing that there are good reasons for them. But, equally important to riding safely is being constantly conscious of your environment. I rarely ride with cycling groups due to a tendency for some cyclists to place the social aspects of riding with others above the importance of observing what others (both in motor vehicles and on bikes) are doing. Maybe my memories are not all that accurate but when I first started riding, there were not a lot of other cyclists around and many of us did ride in groups. However, there was an emphasis (at least locally) upon safe and responsible riding within those groups that seems to have faded away. I know there are still classes available locally for this purpose but they aren't reaching enough cyclists. Perhaps the laws need to be better enforced and those who ignore them given the option of attending such a class in lieu of fines. While this idea is not inexpensive, it is still far less expensive than purchasing massive strips of land all over for the equally expensive purpose of constructing segregated bikeways on them. The new 3' passing rule for motorists is a good start on their education but 2 bigger problems exist that, while not affecting only cyclists, affect them more severely. The problem of distracted drivers (including DUI as a distraction) puts everyone else on the road in danger but cyclists don't have 3000 lbs or more of metal and plastic protecting them from the overconfident and self-indulgent people who engage in these activities. The biggest problem though is changing the attitude by a large proportion of drivers that they have a right to go as fast as legally posted under any and all circumstances. Their "right" to the road does not exceed that of any other road users except as specified in the laws. Safety trumps impatience at temporary holdups."

    OnTheOtherHand commented in:
    Los Osos woman hit and killed while cycling with fiancé on 2014-10-31 18:36:40
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  • "Why not just take Mitchum at his word, OTOH ? He has stated with absolute certainty that he would not even talk across the aisle, much less compromise with those he disagrees even a little with."

    Slowerfaster commented in:
    Lois Capps accused of deception on 2014-10-31 18:31:49
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  • "For the sake of healing our city, an independent and fully comprehensive audit of the entire city and all its departments might be a good idea. They are not cheap, maybe we will get extremely lucky and some courageous citizen with money to spare will step up to the plate. If it occurs, the selection of the financial auditor should have nothing whatsoever to do with anyone connected in any way to the city. Many citizens probably don't have much faith, if any, in some of the latest city matters and how they have apparently been handled. Concerns about the council's involvement in the second "independent" investigation, the council's involvement with handling Adams' supposed resignation (which has not actually occurred yet), or their involvement with selecting his predecessor have all been brought up by our citizens. To whomever is involved with starting the website about freeing the city council, the person who wrote an opinion piece slamming one very specific police officer based on supposed "sources" for the story, whoever is increasing the number of dislikes for CalCoast postings, and to those who may (or may not) potentially be contacting local businesses attempting to get them to take down Mayor Write-In signs…there was an interesting comment made by Ferrara at the end of the last council meeting. He was describing how the media attention and fall-out regarding the scandals is approaching or at libel (something to that effect). Since libel is a written defamatory statement, and slander is a spoken or oral defamatory statement, and potential criminal conduct by any party is and always will be a crime, that's a very interesting opinion that EVERYONE should take notice of. There is a whole lot of inflammatory gasoline being put on an already scorching four-alarm fire. Please by all means loyal pro-city council/management folks, don't let our other Citizens and their seemingly Valid Concerns deter your apparent efforts (intended or unintended) to cause divisiveness within this city. This is getting sadder by the day."

    SadInsider commented in:
    Arroyo Grande needs a financial audit on 2014-10-31 18:26:17
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  • "One more thing...Jim is never too busy to take your call if you have any questions. Please feel free to call him at home, even if only to discuss his busy schedule. He can be reached at: 481-5654. Jim will return your call if you leave a message including the best time to call."

    agag1 commented in:
    Arroyo Grande needs a financial audit on 2014-10-31 18:26:04
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