Editorials

Bouquets and Brickbats: SLO can handle own affairs, thanks

Bill Pelfrey — the Templeton man who’s suing the county over the redrawing of supervisory district lines — earns a pick-a-better-battle brickbat for continuing the puzzling fight to keep Templeton “whole.”

In case you missed the flap, some Templeton residents were understandably concerned because their town was split among supervisory districts in an early proposal. In response, the county found a way to avoid separating the southwest section of the community, yet a small group in Templeton still opposed the boundaries because the Templeton Unified School District wasn’t contained within a single district.

Now Pelfrey is seeking an order to overturn the new map, which took several months and numerous public hearings to prepare.

We find his request odd, for a few reasons:

The old lines had the school district divided among three supervisory districts.

School district boundaries have nothing whatsoever to do with supervisory elections.

Plenty of other school districts — including Lucia Mar and San Luis Coastal — also cross supervisory districts lines.

Apparently, though, it isn’t just Templeton that Pelfrey is worried about. He told Tribune reporter Bob Cuddy that he’s also concerned because the city of San Luis Obispo is divided. That’s awfully considerate, but if the citizens of San Luis Obispo really cared about the way the lines were redrawn, couldn’t they speak up for themselves?

Putting excess food to good use

We have only praise — no rotten tomatoes — for GleanSLO, which picks fresh excess produce from local farms and gardens and distributes it to the hungry through the Food Bank Coalition of San Luis Obispo County.

Last year, the organization picked more than 22,000 pounds of produce for the food bank to distribute. These perfectly good fruits and vegetables would have gone to waste otherwise because of production or timing issues, so we applaud this win-win situation.

We hereby donate a freshly picked bouquet for GleanSLO and its many volunteers, the apple of our eye.

A welcome and a farewell

San Luis Obispo Superior Court Judge Teresa Estrada-Mullaney is the county’s first female judge, first female deputy district attorney, and first Hispanic judge in more than a century. Through her 20 years on the bench, she has been a trailblazer and a role model, according to District Attorney Gerald Shea.

Judge Estrada-Mullaney is retiring this January, and to that we offer a judicious bouquet and tell it to the judge: “Enjoy your retirement.”

City Council takes a pay cut

We toss an actions-speak-louder-than-words bouquet to the San Luis Obispo City Council, for agreeing to take a pay and benefit cut to show solidarity with employees. That’s only fair, since the city is asking many workers to take a 6.8 percent reduction in compensation.

Under the new pay schedule, the monthly salary for a council member will be $945 — down from $1,000. The savings will be modest — $8,300 per year — but in this economy, every dollar counts.

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