More kudos for Reading 2 Rover
As regards the article “Dog is center of attention in Cambria reading program for kids” in The Cambrian of April 5, I would like to thank Kathe Tanner for highlighting the Reading 2 Rover program at Cambria Grammar School.
I would also like to add information about a very important dog and handler team that works with my dog Emil and me. Mary McDonald and her Basset Hound, Stella, are also pictured in the upper left hand corner of the photo on the front page.
Mary and Stella are residents of Cambria. They have also logged many hours visiting other schools in San Luis Obispo County. We are all thrilled to be able to give back to this community via the Reading 2 Rover program at Cambria Grammar School.
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Roberta Vitols, Cambria
Editor missed the point of meeting
In reading the article written by Cambrian editor, Stephen Provost, following the town hall meeting, April 11, at the Vets Hall, I wondered why Mr. Provost did not include one single comment made by members of the community, who posed questions and/or comments to the presenter, Mr. Dean Florez, lobbyist for the CCSD. This was, after all, a town hall meeting, not merely a presentation by Mr. Florez, where members of the community had an opportunity to be engaged in a different format than a regular board meeting.
Mr. Provost’s sole focus in his article was related to a possible refinancing with IBank of the lease-sales agreement the district has with Western Alliance Bank, in which the goal is to acquire a loan with a reduced interest rate, and at the same time, borrow several more million, for which the public has no idea for what purpose.
I was disappointed with the editor’s perception of the meeting, as I do not believe it reflected the essence of a town hall meeting, which should have included the public's involvement.
Tina Dickason, Cambria
San Simeon master plan fantasy
At the recent April San Simeon Community Services District board meeting, the board decided to accept the first full draft of a master plan as final. It lays out a five-phase $12.6 million plan to upgrade key portions our community’s infrastructure, including water storage, water lines, sewer lines, and roads.
The problem is that the full master plan was just made available a few days before the board meeting. It is a complex document with many appendices. The plan includes 1.6 million gallons of water storage – four very large, $1 million tanks. We have 150,000 gallons of storage now. That is 10 times more than we have and is probably near what Cambria has in total.
We are never going to put in four 400,000 tanks for $4 million, and I believe everyone knows this. I guess this was done for other reasons, but just looks like a fantasy to those of us that have studied our needs and what we can realistically afford. Further, it distorts future financials for budget planning and rate setting.
The structure of the future phases is inconsistent with recently agreed district directions. A discrepancy in calculations may have been identified. Further, it is unclear how much growth we can practically accommodate with the Pico Creek basin limitations and increased use of the desalination plant.
This plan was a year in the making but approved with little review or public input. For all the reasons noted, the master plan should not have been accepted. The plan should be reopened for proper review and modification.
Hank Krzciuk, San Simeon
Is this process fair/legal?
As a Cambria property owner since 2002, I have been following the politics of the town. When CCSD (a “special district”) first announced the vote on additional fire personnel, I had hesitation, not about the validity, but about the process.
This is a “special district” wanting to raise taxes/assessments on parcels, which usually triggers a Prop. 218 vote, in which all landowners, and only landowners, vote on the increase of taxes/assessments because they are the ones affected by the increase.
The fire vote is to increase taxes to every parcel in CCSD; however, only registered voters in Cambria are allowed to vote.
Prop. 218 was put in place to protect property owners from unrepresented tax increases. I am a property owner who is not allowed to vote, yet non-property owners will be voting on whether or not to tax all parcels. Where is the representation of all the property owners who will be sharing in this increase? How can CCSD possibly think that only registered voters in Cambria being allowed to vote on assessing all parcels in the district is legal?
Although a very worthwhile proposal, results challenged in court could not only prevail in stopping the additional fire personal but become very costly to the CCSD, which will again impact every property owner. Hopefully, CCSD has done due diligence seeking out legal counsel on this, because I am afraid they might need it.
Rodney Palla, Bakersfield