Will Arroyo Grande support its police in 2015?

December 30, 2014

arroyo grande-5OPINION By OTIS PAGE

The Arroyo Grande Historical Society — named as the South County Historical Society — is an important asset to the quaint village and the visiting public. The Society is located adjacent to the Rotary Band Stand that resounds with music and entertainment during the summer period, and is a terminal destination for the historic swinging bridge.

The membership of the society is made of true natives of the village — many being historic descendants — and those who have moved here dedicated to preserve the change their moving here results. These latter members are the “out of towners” whose monetary and social appetites are quenched by youthful chronicles of the past — relishing times gone by.

As the “ancients” pass on, the society’s membership is diluted by those “not of us,” a natural progression of change as the area grows.

As we depart from the year 2014 and enter 2015, one major issue remains in Arroyo Grande. That being the adversarial attitude of the past mayor, a man revered by the Society, towards that of the police, represented by Arroyo Grande Police Officers Association (AGPOA), and it’s chief in the recent cover up controversy regarding past City Manager Steve Adam’s indiscretion.

Many of the society’s members seem to harbor a bitterness towards the matter, for their man, Tony Ferrara, was beaten and lost his position as mayor to another new comer, Jim Hill. Aghast — out of Oceano — no less.

That bitterness confronts the issue as to who was right on a major question that exists in city politics? Ferrara in his accusations against the police? Or the police in their resounding accusation of the cover up and charges how it was spun by the city management and the past council dominated by Ferrara?

This question is particularly challenging considering the national crisis regarding the police in New York City and Saint Louis. What does this mean to the citizens of Arroyo Grande and the total political domain of District 4 as exemplified by Jim Griffin’s opinion in CalCoastNews, “Plans for reducing police violence?”

This agony highlights and begs the question as to who was right, Ferrara or the police?

If certain members of the Historical Society believe Ferrara is right are they saying the police are liars? That is the rub of the matter. Should the Arroyo Grande City Council resolve this matter? Or should it be massaged by the San Luis Obispo County Grand Jury?

Given the format of the national question, the local matter in supporting its police in Arroyo Grande must be resolved by its council. I support the police and I believe the council must take a stand to clear the record in its first meeting in 2015.



  1. R.Hodin says:

    Small minds are obsessed with questions regarding who was “right” and who was “wrong”

    Anyone who truly wants to create a functioning and responsive AG civic body should soundly reject the utterances of demagogues and malcontents typifyed by Otis Page, for whom the perjorative “Geat A Life” seems to have been uniquely crafted.

    (-2) 14 Total Votes - 6 up - 8 down
  2. jonhartz says:

    The Grand Jury, now half way through it’s session, accepts all citizen referrals and complaints, which is not to say there would be a report. Although it may be too late for this session, the next Grand Jury (2015-2016) will be formed in June 2015. I also urge all interested county residents to apply in April. It is one of the best experiences you can have.

    (-3) 9 Total Votes - 3 up - 6 down
  3. willieslo says:

    As a cop hater I am for the AG cops on this one.
    Not even the cop’s masters are above wrong or misconduct.
    And the AGPD proved themselves worthy!
    People of AG support them! They did right.

    (12) 22 Total Votes - 17 up - 5 down
    • jonhartz says:

      Willieslo, you sound way too intelligent to be a “cop hater”. Maybe a “bad cop hater”? Me too.

      (-1) 3 Total Votes - 1 up - 2 down
  4. willieslo says:

    To toss them at the hands of the City Council for this matter is to put them at the disposition of their ousted master’s friends who will discipline the AGPD and make this matter disappear or appear differently than it is, to save the faces of the powers that be and restore the SOS.
    To let the Grand Jury smooth it out will result in the tossing of these righteous cops (for a change) back to City Council. These cops didn’t cover up or try to protect the sins of their masters, so support the AGPD.

    (5) 17 Total Votes - 11 up - 6 down
  5. willnose says:

    When the choice boils down to professionals (Police) vs. politician (elected), the later’s motives are, by nature, politically driven, and suspect. Thus when in doubt, I back our police force, as I did during the recent months worth of upheaval.

    The police department’s actions spoke loud and clear, as did the incumbent mayor’s responses during those troubled times. The voters added their voices, and we have a new mayor. Thank you, Jim, for stepping up to the challenges facing Arroyo Grande!

    I don’t anticipate our police force, nor the new mayor, to be any less professional, nor remiss in carrying out their sworn duties.

    We, as a people who love this city, have gone through troubling times.
    Let time be the healing ointment to sooth the pains some may still carry and nurse.

    (15) 23 Total Votes - 19 up - 4 down
    • AAADADDYO says:

      this is not about historical society Vs. police
      Rather does Arroyo Grande want to heal the wound or not?
      that is the question.

      (9) 11 Total Votes - 10 up - 1 down
      • doglover says:

        The AG City Council should pass a resolution in support of their police department and chief now that Ferrara is out!
        That would settle the matter.

        Ferrara spoke for the Council on this and that was wrong of him (first time!)
        The new Council can ACT appropriately
        Thank goodness!

        (3) 7 Total Votes - 5 up - 2 down
  6. Stunned says:

    Great opinion as usual Mr. Page. I don’t think I’m looking to city hall to necessarily “support” our police. What I am looking for is a city hall that operates as designed. A fluid and well-operating city hall doesn’t support nor neglect any branch of government within her sphere of responsibility. The mayor as well doesn’t have pet projects or special interest groups he’s fond of.

    The simple mandates aren’t that tough and they’re sometimes not that easy to be certain but, I’m still glad we have Mayor Hill. Time to lace up your shoes Jim. Show AG what you’re made of!

    (13) 27 Total Votes - 20 up - 7 down

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