We aren’t asking anyone to run a marathon or learn a foreign language or read the entire works of Shakespeare, though those are all admirable pursuits. Instead, we offer a list of resolutions — assignments, really — that are tailored to San Luis Obispo County. There’s something here for almost everybody: Public officials, dog owners, the DMV.
If you are planning to run a marathon — or to take on any other sort of challenge in 2016 — we wish you the best of luck with it. And we wish all of our readers a happy New Year.
San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors
This year, skip the drama surrounding selection of a new chair. You have better things to do. Here’s one for the top of your list: Implement an affordable housing plan, instead of just talking about it.
Do not, under any circumstances, say any of the following:
- Red tape
- Outside the box
- Government needs to run more like a business!
Speaking in buzz words (or buzz phrases) tells voters next to nothing about who you are and what you can do for them. Use your real words.
Hold candidates accountable. Don’t let them get away with speaking in generalities. (See above.)
Local elected officials
Reread the SLO County League of Women Voters’ pamphlet on civility. And remember, courtesy should be extended to everyone, including staff members. Don’t berate them in public. It makes everyone uncomfortable.
Local public agencies
Work with nonprofits and churches to make sure every community has an adequate number of beds in homeless shelters and warming stations during this El Niño winter. If necessary, set up beds in public buildings. Some, such as the Grover Beach court building, aren’t even in use. If you need volunteers to help staff the shelters, let us know. We’ll help spread the word.
This may sound like blasphemy, but how about some healthier food choices?
The infamous Shell Beach Straits is the county’s No. 1 traffic hot spot on Highway 101, and it’s getting worse. A fix is not going to be quick or easy. The sooner you start, the better.
Cal Poly Administration
Release your plan to increase campus diversity and tolerance ASAP. That shouldn’t be difficult to do, as you had originally targeted release for mid-December. Then follow up by putting identified programs and policies into practice. In other words, learn by doing — not by promising.
The next time 52 of you are thinking about climbing on a roof to enjoy a few brewskies, think again. In other words, enjoy yourselves, but in moderation.
State Sen. Bill Monning
Spend more time in SLO County.
Remember, there’s a time and a place. The driver’s seat is definitely not one of them. Neither is the dinner table or the movie theater.
Stay off the sidewalks. They’re for pedestrians.
Do not, under any circumstances, ride indoors. You can walk up and down the aisles of your local Big Box just like the rest of us.
Clean up your pet’s poop. And throw away the poop bag when you’re done.
If you haven’t already done so, severely limit the amount of turf allowed in new housing developments. That goes for the county as well.
Some headway was made last year on ridding the forest of dead and dying pines. Make even more progress this year.
City of San Luis Obispo
If you want to spruce up the downtown, spend less time worrying about whether the live Christmas tree blocks the view of the Mission and more time washing down sidewalks, especially after busy weekend nights.
Bars of downtown SLO
While the vision of not-so-pristine sidewalks is still dancing in our heads, we’re wondering if it’s time to rethink (or at least tone down) the tradition of offering weird signature drinks free of charge to 21st birthday celebrants.
Parking lot designers
Make the stalls bigger. Not everyone has traded in his or her SUV.
Don’t pull a Haggen.
Department of Motor Vehicles
Cut the wait time for telephone customers to 30 minutes, tops. According to the telephone “greeting” we’ve received a few times in the past couple of months, the wait can be as long as an hour. Ridiculous!
Next winter, stick boughs of holly or jingle bells or something equally yule-tidey on your red cups, as evidence that you are not waging war on Christmas. (One would think the advent calendars you regularly stock would be proof enough, but apparently not.) We don’t want to listen to more caterwauling about something that, in the grand scheme, does not amount to a hill of beans.
Village of Arroyo Grande
Tone down the Christmas lights, which are verging dangerously close to gaudy. A little bling goes a long way.
All of us
If we don’t already have one, install a rain barrel.
Eat less, volunteer more.
Stand up! And while we’re at it, stop slouching! As the saying goes, sitting is the new smoking. And according to a recent article in The New York Times, our mothers were right: Slouching is bad for our physical and mental health. If we can, avoid the Los Osos Valley Road overpass until it’s finished. That’s bad for our mental health, too.