Pages

Friday, September 22, 2006

Los Osos 7 -- Taxpayers Watch O Part I

LAFCo voted (7 – 0) on Sept 21st to deny the Taxpayers Watch petition to dissolve the Los Osos CSD. The Tribune noted (dryly? wryly?) that Taxpayers Watch “consists in part of directors removed in the recall election,” which, of course, explains a lot.

The key reasons that LAFCo denied the dissolution petition had to do with concern that if they voted to dissolve the CSD, then the county taxpayers would end up with both the assets and liabilities of the district. Since this issue has dragged on for months and months with postponement after postponements, several key events had finally fallen into place that assisted the Board in making their decision. (1) The Blakeslee Bill had been signed that morning which allowed the county to take over the sewer project. Paavo Ogren, from County Public Works and the guy who’ll be shepherding the sewer project, told the Board that his Dept would be working with CSD reps in setting the groundwork for any collaborative efforts so everyone could be up to speed when the Blakeslee Bill becomes law in January. (2) The District had filed in federal court for Bankruptcy protection, thus giving it breathing room from all the pile-on lawsuits to begin to sort out its finances. (3) With the sewer project moving ahead on a separate track, with the other services (fire, water, trash) in no immediate danger of crashing, (water rates will be raised, part of a previously structured rate raise that got delayed – Ouch, but maybe the raise will make people more conscious of just how limited and precious our water is and how much everyone better get on the stick to start conserving) the reason for dissolving the CSD faded from view. (4) Added to the mix and voted on 7 – 0 were two additional separate recommendations: (1) a recommendation that the district conduct an “performance and financial audit” and (2) LAFCO would send a letter to the Bankruptcy judge to make sure any possible sale of the Tri W property follows proper procedures vis a vis notifying County of the availability of the property so they can get first crack at buying it.

As with all things Los Ososian, this hearing was loaded with irony and comedy and weirdiosity. Consider:

Dissolutions of this kind were never intended to be used on actual living, breathing districts. Instead, the dissolution procedure was there to be used to clean out the legal dead wood of districts that had long since died or technically morphed into something else while the legal paperwork uselessly remained on the books. That the dissolution procedure was the very first one used by some recalled CSD Board members via Taxpayers Watch instead of all the other “democratic” tools available to them and their supporters – re-recalls, voter initiatives, running for office, serving on committees, petitioning the “government,” etc., -- did not sit well with Supervisor Achadijian, who noted that Americans have gone a long way to spread democracy around the world and figured both LAFCo needed to ensure “democracy” a secure place in Los Osos and that the people out here needed to get off their buns and vote.

That, of course, was always the problem I had with what Taxpayers Watch did in petitioning for dissolution. That this was the FIRST tool out of their box, not the last, indicated the real game: Lose an election? Simple, use LAFCo as the mechanism to eliminate the CSD, and while you’re at it, be sure to file some “frivolous” lawsuits to help ensure bankruptcy becomes the only option, thereby adding fuel to the fire.

Paul Hood did note that he’ll be attending a workshop on dissolution matters at the state level because it’s clear that new laws are needed to deal with just what happened here: The use of dissolution as a political tool to try to achieve what wasn’t achieved at the ballot box. Once again, Los Osos has set a prescedent. Gee, hooray for us, some more, woo, Yippee, etc.


As for eye-popping weirdness, there was Supervisor Bianchi officially claiming from the dais during an official meeting during Board comment time that the (new) CSD Board came to her to ask for her help in “breaking the law.” It was a breathtaking accusation that demands proof, which, of course, will never be forthcoming. More weirdness? During the Board comments after the vote, Bianchi noted that when she first heard about the Dissolution she first thought “Hallelujah.” Hmmmm, and here I thought the LAFCo Board was supposed to be composed of NEUTRAL, UNBIASED folks capable of fairly hearing all sides of the matter and that anyone who had a clear conflict of interest or entanglements on one side or the other (I recall Shirley’s letter to the editor and, if memory serves, her radio ads for the anti-recall group, not to mention her letter sent to a State Water Board member shortly after the recall election offering her help in taking the project away from the CSD & etc.) that they would recuse themselves, of only for the appearance of fairness. Not our Shirley.

And for comic relief we had Chairperson Barbara Mann barely concealing her disgust at having to sit and listen to public comment during, well, public comment. She even went so far as to note, on microphone, “We already know what you’re going to say.”

Uh, Ms. Mann, I hate to point this out to you but one of the (admittedly) most trying and annoying and irritating things about public comment is actually listening to public comment. And, as you probably know, Boards are supposed to maintain the pleasant fiction that they haven’t already prejudged an agenda item before the public comment is even started. They’re supposed to at least pretend that their minds are still open and that they might actually learn something from public comment that might influence their vote on the matter before them. But, if you’ve already prejudged an item, at the very least, you’re supposed to PRETEND that you haven’t and sit there politely and listen to whatever is said. If it gets too boring you can always sneak a book onto the dais, or maybe fall asleep with your eyes open, or write the great American novel under the guise of taking notes and so forth. It’s all part of the theatre of doing the public’s business . . . in public.


CSD 7 -- Taxpayers Watch O Part II

But the best part of the morning came when the next agenda item came up: Taxpayers Watch petitioned LAFCo to have the LAFCo costs for these months of work to conduct all the investigations and prepare all the reports for the Board waived – i.e. let the county taxpayers eat it.

At first, when I read that item, I thought it was some kind of sick joke, like the guy who murders his parents then flings himself on the mercy of the court for clemency because he’s but a poor orphan.

Considering what TPW has cost the Los Osos taxpayers already in having to defend against their “frivolous” lawsuits, this one is the height of hubris. As for hypocrisy, you can’t beat a group declaring they’re petitioning for dissolution in order to “save” the taxpayers of Los Osos by sticking the taxpayers of the County with the whole mess.

Uh, sorry, guys. The recalled Board members set this CSD up for bankruptcy (borrowing from the reserves while counting on the arrival of the SRF loan in time to avoid going into the red, a dangerous gamble.). Furthermore, they and they alone decided to set their own recall election date as late as possible and then voted to unnecessarily pound millions of dollars of the SRF loan into the ground before the election in a reckless gamble (again) with the taxpayers money. All this was “local,” and needs to be dealt with locally. Los Ososians elected the guys who did this, Los Ososians un-elected the guys who did this, so Los Ososians need to clean up their own mess, not stick county residents with it all.

As for Taxpayers Watch now owing some $22,317.60 for LAFCo costs, if they don’t have the money to pay the bill, they can declare bankruptcy. Or, better yet, I would suggest a community fund-raiser. Taxpayers Watch has claimed they have been altruistically acting to protect the interests of Los Osos taxpayers. Fine, time for the Los Osos taxpayers to step up. TPW can set up some tables at Farmer’s Market and ask for donations. That’s what other groups have done who have altruistically sued or petitioned or whatever. It’s democracy at its finest. And, as Lisa Schicker, CSD Board President noted at the hearing, “Democracy is rampant in Los Osos . . . .”

Rampant? Or Running Amok? Ah, well, that’s my beloved Sewerville.

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ann,

So you are happy that the "whole mess" (liabilities of $50 million +) are to be paid entirely by the residents of Los Osos?

Anonymous said...

Ann writes among Yada Yada...

"...while you’re at it, be sure to file some “frivolous” lawsuits to help ensure bankruptcy becomes the only option, thereby adding fuel to the fire."

This repeated theme of yours is now taken as the gospel by the faithful even thought it has been refuted many times. TPW has filed two suits, one striking down Measure B again! And even though they won, this is on appeal and costing the property owners to defend again and again! And no mention of the gazillion lawsuits pursued by your faithful, truly unbiased commenting!

Thank goodness there is an up coming election that will restore sanity. Then you can go back to writing about rocking chairs, etc. and just drop off the radar.

Without some issue to "explain" to the faithful, your Huck Finn writing style falls wayyy short of the original, envoking just yawns and page turnings.

Sorry, but the lack of a target for your "wit" will lower your public profile, how ever will you deal with this loss of notoriety?

CSD meetings can go back to the necessary but boring conducting of minor local business, government at its best!

Anonymous said...

Nice take Ann. And of course thouroughly expected. Here's another take. As with anyone who comes in contact with this CSD and their supporters (see the State warer board; regional water board; etc), the county supervisors and LAFCO obviously have nothing but contempt and disgust with the actions of this CSD and their supporters. I don't blame them in the least in shielding the county from the malfeasance and ignorance of them and their attornies. Inter-agency commitee. HA!!!!!!! These incompetents won't get the time of day from the county now that the county has the sewer. Window dressing at best. And thank goodness for that.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Ann for your support of the LOCSD and bankruptcy within 9 months of taking office. Your foolishness of supporting their actions has brought this upon us.

As soon as they stopped the sewer, and started with the lawyers to obstruct water law, it was inevitable to knowledgeable people. Better get yourself checked for toxoplasmosis. If you think the water rate raise causes an ouch, just wait as the foolishness of this board continues with their obstructive and destructive decisions.

Perhaps Taxpayers watch saw the writing on the wall. They have property and finances to protect, and if the terrible sewer in the middle of town is built, maybe they will have saved your limited finances some big bucks.

This board was the cause of the problem, put into office by uninformed voters who believed lies.

Now it is the time to pay. The war is over. The county will not listen to fools like you and those who have listened to your sharp and totally biased propaganda.

Anonymous said...

You scream about the 23 grand for wished to be waved for taxpayers watch. Why do you not start screaming about the 40+ million the actions of this board has cost us? Get real. Bianchi was totally correct.

Ron said...

Excellent report, Ann, as usual.

An Anon said:

"... the lack of a target..."

Oh, methinks there will be plenty of targets for a long time to come.

Ann said:

"As for Taxpayers Watch now owing some $22,317.60 for LAFCo costs, if they don’t have the money to pay the bill, they can declare bankruptcy. "

Speaking of them owing... any chance us county taxpayers could get back the $5 million (plus interest) they wasted when they dumped the county's nearly-approved project back in 1999? That'd be sweet.

We now have bookends: November, 3 1998 = left bookend, and September 21, 2006 = right bookend, with one hell of an amazing story jammed in between.

Wanna see something funny (well... not "ha-ha" funny, but more like sad funny)? Although the actual page no longer exists, a Google search for ' "Measure K" osos ' returns this:

Los Osos CSD: No Financial Threat!
VOTE YES Measure K Los Osos CSD (Community Services District) November 3, 1998...


No financial threat!?

Oh well, I guess we can just toss that onto the "better, cheaper, faster," "Do-Doing It Right," and "Maximum monthly payment of $38.75" pile.

"... put into office by uninformed voters who believed lies." Indeed.

Shark Inlet said...

What bothers me most about the decision is not the result (no dissolution) but the stated reasons for the decision. I have yet to see any listing of criteria for considering dissolution requests which would suggest this is a reasonable way to reach a conclusion. In essence, LAFCO is now wide-open to a lawsuit because they appear to have reached their conclusions based on a reason which might be legally irrelevant.

One criterion for dissolution according to the LAFCO documents is whether the district has a "sphere of influence" or not. In essence, is the governance of fire, garbage and water services enough to justify the LOCSD. Considering that the LOCSD contracts out fire and garbage services, we are down to providing water to half the community.

I would argue that we don't need a CSD that includes the entirety of Los Osos to provide water services to half our townsfolk. Essentially it would appear that the LOCSD doesn't have a reason to exist unless they can provide evidence that they do more.

So ... the stated reason not to dissolve is to protect those in the County but not in Los Osos. Essentially they want us to pay the costs associated with our choice of board members and our board member choices. I think this seems fair at face value, but I want to see a justification about where in the LAFCO documents it allows for considering such facts as a way of reaching a conclusion.


To Ron who complains that the County spent some $5M on a project before the CSD was formed. I would want to point out that you've argued that it is just fine and dandy to waste some $18M in money planning a sewer if you don't like the sewer that was planned. If you're going to complain about $5M in waste I find it odd that you are unwilling to complain about any wasted funds since Sep 27, 2005.

Also, if you are going to start to parse the veracity of campaign promises ... when are you going to look into the promise by the recall candidates that they have a plan that will cost us less than $100/month. Their own Ripley report reveals them to have been innacurate.

On the other hand, I am probably asking too much if I am asking Ron to do anything other than criticize the solutions group and anyone associated with the LOCSD before Julie was elected. He'll never do it.

Anonymous said...

I guess what puzzles me about this democratic process business is that there was nothing to be done but recall 3 board members to stop the fianancial bloodletting that became more and more fatal after each month past stopping the project.

Does anyone know how much it cost to recall the three former directors and how long that took? Could be dissolution seemed less expensive?

And if that isn't democratic enough, how about the three to be elected? What do they get for democratically being voted in? A bankrupt board that may not be able to sustain itself for one year, let alone the four years for the incoming directors. Guess LAFCO didn't want to put the poor, sick CSD out of its misery, but would prefer to watch it die a slow and agonizing death.

Anonymous said...

Ann said:

"Los Ososians need to clean up their own mess, not stick county residents with it all."

Right. And we will.

However, Lisa and Julie were on the old board. They knew about the "financial situation" didn't they? Do they not share in any culpability for the $40 million dollar mess costing each property owner tens of thousands? Couldn't they see that bottom line of red ink coming at them??

If they didn't know about the "financial situation" then, shame on them for not knowing. It was their JOB to know.

And if they DID know, and went ahead spending anyway, even more shame on them for selling us all out for their precious idea, which now has wound up in the County's hands, with a very uncertain future.

Anonymous said...

Ann says:

"As for hypocrisy, you can’t beat a group declaring they’re petitioning for dissolution in order to “save” the taxpayers of Los Osos by sticking the taxpayers of the County with the whole mess."

Guess you weren't listening at the hearing. The TW position was very clear to NOT stick the County taxpayers with the bill, but to corral the debt in CSA#9. Guess you missed that part.

I can't wait to see what besides their outed and failed effort to sell Tri-W will be thrown in the way of the County and AB2701 next. I'm sure it will be a doozy and very, very expensive. I for one can't wait to vote on November 7.

Anonymous said...

Ann says:

"water rates will be raised, part of a previously structured rate raise that got delayed – Ouch, but maybe the raise will make people more conscious of just how limited and precious our water is and how much everyone better get on the stick to start conserving"

Sure - people SHOULD conserve water. But the CSD should also conserve it pitifully meager assest too. Maybe you saw a comment on that rate raise during the CSD meeting - water rates will be raised and $200,000 MORE for this fiscal year than the 05-06 year can be sucked out of the water account to transfer to Administration. That's where the lawyers get paid from. All bills from lawyers prior to the bankruptcy are stopped until settlement. However, new bills being incurred must be paid.

Churadogs said...

Inlet sez:"What bothers me most about the decision is not the result (no dissolution) but the stated reasons for the decision. I have yet to see any listing of criteria for considering dissolution requests which would suggest this is a reasonable way to reach a conclusion. In essence, LAFCO is now wide-open to a lawsuit because they appear to have reached their conclusions based on a reason which might be legally irrelevant."

I agree. When LAFCO first opened the investigation and process to begin the dissolution, the first thing that popped up on the radar was a "compromise" in the form of and implied threat/blackmail/helpful suggestion?, Remove the Sewer Component and we won't dissolve you. Keep it and we'll dissolve you, and etc. At the time, I wrote a letter of objection that they were setting a dangerous precedence, that a district should be judged wholy on its overall "health," as it were, and an up or down vote taken. Using LAFCO to parse out this or that or using a LAFCO dissolution as a political tool would only have serious repercussions down the line, as some of the Board members noted. In short, after their initial look at the whole situation months and months ago, LAFCO should have voted Yea or Nay and proceeded accordingly. If "bad" cases make "bad" law this is but an example. I think what and how LAFCO proceeded in this case could haunt this county for years to come.

Anonymous sez:"Thank goodness there is an up coming election that will restore sanity. Then you can go back to writing about rocking chairs, etc. and just drop off the radar."

It was an Adirondack chair, not a rocking chair.

The same Anonymous also said:"Sorry, but the lack of a target for your "wit" will lower your public profile, how ever will you deal with this loss of notoriety?"

Bwahahahah. I've been writing this column since 1991. I learned long ago that my comments, even on critical issues like gazillions wasted by SLO Coastal & etc, were like hollering down a well. I can assure you that you vastly overestimate my, uh, notoriety.

Joey Racano said...

If you all had listened to me and pushed the ABC regional solution which made perfect sense, all this would not have happened, and we would have been able to delay the sewer for at least 20 years and the water board would have been able to nothing about it.

I offered salvation for Los Osos and you rejected the prophet. Now most likely you will get your stinky, sludgemaking, super expensive, ugly, and environmentally unsound sewer in the middle of town. Vote for Sikes, Cessna, and Senet. They know how to bring the County into line through legal suits.

Anonymous said...

Ann: When looking at your commentary, you ALWAYS leave out information which would make the LOCSD board look foolish. How about the comments of Julie Hayward Biggs (lawyer emeritus) in avoiding the questions from the commissioners? Perhaps the lawyers are about to make an errors and omission defense based upon "We never gave legal opinion, we just followed the directions of the board."

Why do you take offense at being called biased and being the chief propagandist of the board? Shame.

Anonymous said...

Ann wrote:

"Bwahahahah. I've been writing this column since 1991. I learned long ago that my comments, even on critical issues like gazillions wasted by SLO Coastal & etc, were like hollering down a well. I can assure you that you vastly overestimate my, uh, notoriety."

You are totally correct! Your problem continues to be a lack of ferreting out the truth, and the omission of truth that is unsupporting of your position. As a result, intelligent people stopped taking you seriously years ago.

Churadogs said...

Anonymoose sez:"Bwahahahah. I've been writing this column since 1991. I learned long ago that my comments, even on critical issues like gazillions wasted by SLO Coastal & etc, were like hollering down a well. I can assure you that you vastly overestimate my, uh, notoriety."

You are totally correct! Your problem continues to be a lack of ferreting out the truth, and the omission of truth that is unsupporting of your position. As a result, intelligent people stopped taking you seriously years ago."

You need to go back and read all those Miss Plitchard columns. Absolutely loaded to the gills with fact and truth. Did no good. Gazillions went down ratholes, and later, when it was really too late, I had people sheepishly come up to me to say, Uh, you were right, they did blow all that dough, ah, well, too bad. Then shrug and walk away.

You also need to go back and read all my "Oh Lucy, Joooo Gotta Lotta 'Spainin' to do" columns wherein, at key times, I raised issues that the community -- had they been paying any attention at all -- should have stepped up and demanded answers to those questions. They didn't. And the train wreck you see now is a result of unanswered questions, missed opportunities, failure by several regulatory agencies to insiste on the answers, bad choices, failure to insist on some key community votes & etc. This train wreck was constructed one step at a time and could have been averted at one of several key places. Attempting to blame me for those failures is just silly.

Sewertoons said...

churadogs says:

"This train wreck was constructed one step at a time and could have been averted at one of several key places."

I have read a lot from you about what the old board did and what the waterboards did. How about some more recent history being analyzed - like the key places the present board could have made some changes, or done anything differently, or were they just helpless passengers on this train heading for bankruptcy, let's say since January for instance? There was no reason to change direction on their part? Can you think of one change they might have made? All the blame for wreckage lies at the feet of the courts and waterboards since January?

Anonymous said...

Ann gives the reason for her omissions and bias:

"And the train wreck you see now is a result of unanswered questions, missed opportunities, failure by several regulatory agencies to insiste on the answers, bad choices, failure to insist on some key community votes & etc. This train wreck was constructed one step at a time and could have been averted at one of several key places. Attempting to blame me for those failures is just silly."

Sounds like a lot of "shoulda coulda" to me. True, you can't be blamed for the failures. You can only be blamed as a propagandist for the board that caused all the problems by stopping the sewer, lying to the electorate before the election and after the election, lying to the water board, and LAFCO. "It is only a typo" is just a small example, but has caused the nadir of respect for Shicker. Get real! You started yourself in journalistic opinion with a lack of reality, lost your support except from kooks, and continue on the same course. And yet, you are one of the finest writers I have ever had the privilege to read: you write images and emotion with clarity. Too bad you are screwed up politically.

It is not to late to change: write of things of beauty (images) and emotion. You may make a lasting impression upon humanity, words that may be read for hundreds of years. Chairs come to mind.

Your political propaganda belongs in the trash. We easily forget "shoulda coulda" when faced with reality.

Shark Inlet said...

Okay,

I'm getting annoyed with the hoopla over this "typo" thing.

People are acting like the simple "cut-n-paste" action doesn't sometimes cause paragraphs to be included where they shouldn't be.

Cut Lisa some slack. She clearly meant that the inclusion of this item in the meeting agenda was because they had been copying the same darn agenda week in and week out and that they didn't intend on doing anything about selling any property.

Chalk it up to sloppy editing on the part of the CSD staff and/or unfortunate directions ("just copy last week's agenda") from the general manager (or whomever is in charge of the loony bin).

Not the best choice of words, but nothing nefarious here.

Heck, maybe it isn't democracy, but paranoia that is running rampant here in town.

Churadogs said...

Inlet sez:"Chalk it up to sloppy editing on the part of the CSD staff and/or unfortunate directions ("just copy last week's agenda") from the general manager (or whomever is in charge of the loony bin).

Not the best choice of words, but nothing nefarious here.

Heck, maybe it isn't democracy, but paranoia that is running rampant here in town."

I agree, it's probably the old cut 'n paste problem. And couldn't agree more that paranoia is running rampant here too. Everyone needs to keep about a pound of salt at their elbow.And a sharp eye out for Chicken Littles. If this community wants The Process to get back on track they'd all better stop monkey wrenching and insist that everyone get their fingers off the scales. Otherwise the wrong track will be laid, again, and we'll all go off another cliff. . . again.

Anonymous said...

Was anyone else chilled to the bone by Shirley Bianchi's comment at the LAFCO meeting that attendance at public meetings is "irrelevant" now that we have televised meetings, and by Barbara Mann's continued efforts to stifle public comment during that same LAFCO meeting?

It seems our public officials would rather that the public just stay out of the way and let the "Powers That Be" get on with the business of "representative government" without the bother of having to actually listen to those they represent.

How embarrassing to be represented by someone who would make such a blatantly "1984" reference. Citizen attendance at public meetings is irrelevant. One can only guess what democratic function will next become irrelevant.

An electorate that sits home on the couch munching chips and sipping soda numbly glued to a TV screen makes Big Brother comfortable, but does nothing to promote thoughtful dialogue, communication, or compromise between and among citizens who have differing viewpoints, and it simply contributes to the paranoia, anger, and incivility that show up in places like this.

Having said this, I know it is only a matter of moments before someone will convolute this comment into the sewer issue. I hope, however, that before you do, you consider the more generic implications of the words of those two women who represent us in positions of power in our county community.

Sewertoons said...

Her comment was probably specific to Los Osos, as we are well known to have meetings laced with shouting and anger. "…thoughtful dialogue, communication, or compromise between and among citizens who have differing viewpoints…" is not the Los Osos way. That is our reputation, just ask many older folks.

Also, consider AGE. Meetings are held at night. People with kids to babysit or who work, might not be able to attend, and seniors with vision or mobility problems might do as many do, do the "absentee ballot vote" by watching it on TV.

Anonymous said...

LAFCO is weird.

Anonymous said...

From the comment in response to to the 10:12 am post, it sounds as if Sewertoons did not attend the LAFCO meeting or watch it on TV. I hope everyone gets the opportunity to hear Shirley's words in context. She actually had a tone of emphatic disdain when she voiced the word, "irrelevant."

Her comments, which could have been an opportunity for creating a platform for unification, served further to divide and foster acrimony, the very quality she attributed to our town.

She showed, unfortunately, a complete lack of leadership and used her comments as an opportunity, instead, to get some things "off her chest" as she said. It sounded as though she was getting even. In so doing, she strengthened the stereotype of Los Osos conveyed in Sewertoons's message and wasted an opportunity she had to be a leader, as our own personal Supervisor, in the process of bringing the town back together.

That she is not running for re-election and no longer needs our votes presumably influenced her behavior.

But to return to the point, Shirley's comments regarding the irrelevance of attendance at the CSD meetings by the citizenry in general simply because they are broadcast on TV, combined with Barbara Mann's continuous intimidation of speakers by her repeated comments that the commission, for example, already knew what the speakers were going to say and that "some people don't know when they're ahead" point to a dangerously undemocratic direction in the thinking and conduct of both these LAFCO commissioners that reflects the tenor of national politics today, which is why we NEED to attend meetings.

I don't know when Sewertoons would like meetings to be held. During the day would omit the greater part of the populace who work all day, not to mention the majority of the committee members who also work all day. As someone who attends meetings, I know what a burden late nights put on a working person, but the alternative is to take the time off work, which most people can't afford to do on any regular basis. I suppose the weekends are an alternative, but then there's soccer and church for some, football on TV for others, and family time, which is in such short supply these days.

All the committees I ever served on, all the clubs I ever belonged to met after school and after dinner. It's a sacrifice worth making if you value the democratic process enough. TV is good for those times when you can't make it and for those to old or ill, but those with questions or commentaries ought to tell the right people at the right time instead of fuming on a site like this that no one listens to them.

This is not a criticism of Sewertoons, but merely some thoughts to consider. Most especially, though, it would probably be best to watch the LAFCO hearing before commenting on it.

Sewertoons said...

I was at the LAFCo hearing. Ms. Mann's comments seem to have been wildly blown out of proportion. I didn't see them as that big of a deal. I'm not thinking Julie's little explosion was that big of a deal either.

I think Los Osos need to realize that we are pains in the ass to others in the county and state. Los Osos needs to see WHY it is that others feel that way, without the blinders of self justification, not just cry "poor me."

That our governor would publicly criticize us is embarrassing. Our reputation is embarrassing. We put a lot of government to work on protests not well thought out, nor is the "You're bad, but gimme what I want cause I want it" attitude one that will bring positive results.

If you think that Barbara Mann was intimidating, guess you haven't been to many of our CSD meetings, with the back row comments that are not curtailed often enough or hard enough.

Creating a platform of unification is what the 10 CSD candidates need to be talking about, not Shirley Bianchi. That is not her responsibility. We need to clean up the mess in our own house so we can go out into the world and get a little respect from it. We can ask for help in doing that, when we show that we are READY for some help.

I'm was not saying we should have a different time for meetings, just giving reasons why it might be hard for some to attend. I think if the board changes, a new direction in meetings might draw people back in again. Right now, listening to the same 10 people drone on about how great the current board is and how bad the old board was, does nothing to increase attendance. The atmosphere in there is toxic. I'm amazed the meetings get as much viewership as they do. I think it shows that people still do want to know what is going on and that they still care.

I really don't mean to criticize anon 5:46's comments. I'm just here giving a different viewpoint of what I saw at the LAFCo hearing, etc..

Anonymous said...

I just saw the latter moments of the LAFCO meeting. Joyce Albright"they cut us off at our knees". I don't know, that just sounds weird coming from someone sitting in a scooter.
Shirley Bianchi. Have you ever heard such venom released upon constituents? I go back to the Supervisors hearing on, i'm not sure which issue, but about 2004, which gave approval to Tri-W. After public comment, which sounded like no,no,no,no,no,no,yea,no,no,no,no,no,no,yea,no, Before the vote,Supervisors are asked to speak. In the Military, it is common policy to allow the junior officer to speak first so as not to be influenced by a senior officer. In these hearings, Shirley Bianchi spoke first.Nope, i'm going with Tri-W. What do you suppose the other Supervisors did? If their own Representitive say's go with it , then we might as well. Shirley, thank you for your dis-service and good-bye.

Anonymous said...

"Have you ever heard such venom released upon constituents?"

Kinda like the venom I saw released by the state water board when they revoked the SRF loan (upon hearing the CSD spent much of the 6 million dollars already released on lawyers). Or the venom I saw released by the Regional water board when they had to sit through the scathing comments of this board and their sewer-fascist supporters. Venon released on this CSD is nothing new. And still, I suspect, you wonder why.

Anonymous said...

Well I may not agree with the way the sewer thing is going but as an elected official I am expected to show some leadership. Shirley B. is too involved in the tit for tat thing. The public has a lot more leeway in my opinion. Elected public officials should be able to rise above that nonsense (which doesn't go anywhere but creates more hard feelings). I for one am glad she is on her way out. We need a new personality on the BOS. The question is...Gibson or Anderson? Someone chime in on this please.

Anonymous said...

To Anon 3:08,
This fight goes back, in earnest, for 23 years. At every turn, the citizens of this Community have been let down by every Board, or Official involved. That this group is viewed as the ones that got us into this mess is not right. Take away the unnecessary things that happened before the election, and we're in a lot different position.

Shark Inlet said...

To our most recent anonynmous friend ...

You are dead on correct when you say that pretty much every board has let us down. However this doesn't mean that the recall wasn't just about the worst thing that could have happened at that time given the history of the situation.

Anonymous said...

Actually, if you think about it, past history meant we had some wiggle room. I mean every body else got a free ride. The County, the original CSD.
Like i've said before, had the recall either been earlier, as was possible,or had the old CSD board not started what and WHERE they did when they didn't have to, we would be in a much different picture. Do you not agree with that?

Shark Inlet said...

Okay, got it.

The problem is that a recall election isn't guite the same sort of change in governance as the formation of the CSD.

Another factor is that over time, as the project keeps getting delayed and avoided and the like, the RWQCB (and others) might very well be less and less willing to give wiggle room. After all, if you give four years of wiggle room everytime a new board with a new plan is elected it would seem that the project could be avoided forever by simply electing people who don't like the previous group's plan.