Bouquets and Brickbats

City Council still on target for skate park

letters@thetribunenews.comApril 12, 2013 

The SLO City Council hasn’t wavered in its support for a new skateboard park, and that earns it a gnarly, thanks-for-not-bailing bouquet.

With so many needs out there — the Downtown Association, for example, is asking the city to fund two police officers for the downtown — it might be tempting for the council to delay moving forward with the park to address more “serious” concerns. It hasn’t — a proposed spending plan reviewed by the council on Tuesday includes $1.2 million for the new park.

That’s good; the new skate park has been in the planning for more than a decade, and given the importance of youth recreation, it’s time to move the project forward.

Congrats to GreenHound grads

We present organic bouquets bound in recyclable ribbon to the 39 graduates of the GreenHound Academy at Atascadero High.

This program — the only one of its kind in the county — combines academic learning with community service projects, such as organic farming and gardening.

Many of the graduates plan to go on to “green” careers, including sustainable farming, landscaping and environmental law.

The GreenHound Academy sounds like an excellent way to capitalize on students’ interests, while training the next generation of environmental stewards. Congratulations to the all GreenHounds, both students and staff.

Returner of bracelet a real gem

He may have given up a $20,000 bracelet, but retired firefighter Joe Mingham gained a friend when he returned the piece of jewelry to its rightful owner.

Mingham, who lives in Modesto, found the bracelet over Presidents Day weekend while he was off-roading at the Oceano Dunes. The owner, Orange County resident Robyn Giranda, lost the bracelet in the summer. Luckily for her, she filed a report of the loss with State Parks, and that documentation helped unite the two — Mingham and Giranda — who became friends in the process.

We don’t know what’s more amazing — that the bracelet was discovered after so many months, or that some kind soul had the goodwill and generosity to go to considerable lengths to track down its rightful owner, even after he’d learned what the bracelet was worth.

You’re a rare gem, Joe Mingham, and we toss you a sparkling, diamond-studded bouquet for your inspirational deed.

Saturday mail not going — for now

It looks like we won’t have to give up Saturday mail delivery after all — catalogs, credit card offers and mani-pedi coupons will keep on coming, six days a week.

According to the Washington Post, the postmaster general backed away from a plan to end Saturday delivery in the face of “bipartisan congressional opposition.” Instead, the Postal Service — which lost nearly $16 billion last year — will look for other ways to save money.

We have nothing against Saturday mail delivery — as long as the trip brochures outnumber the bills — but snail mail is becoming less and less relevant in this age of electronic messaging. If the Postal Service believes that cutting Saturday service is the most cost-effective way to survive, Congress shouldn’t stand in its way.

For delaying the inevitable, brickbats — signed, sealed and addressed to Capitol Hill — are in the mail.

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