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Damage control. City entangled in CalDesal’s advocacy and lobbying activities - by Paul Gratz
Last week, the City of Santa Cruz issued the unusual news release entitled “Santa Cruz Water Director Key to Non-Profit CalDesal Success. Bill Kocher Named Vice-President of the Board.” The PR piece appears designed as a damage control tactic to both reframe and obfuscate the city’s role as a prominent member of the CalDesal advocacy and lobbying organization. [Attachment: City issued news release extolling the key contributions of Bill "Desal or Die" Kocher makes towards advancing th...
Posted: Wed May 22, 2013 2:16PM
ACLU Chair Closes Monthly Boad of Directors Meeting, Homeless Issues Off the Agenda - by Robert Norse
Last night the local ACLU, long notorious for its refusal to join other ACLU's across the state in supporting the trampled rights of local homeless people, underlined its authoritarian process by excluding members of the public (including ACLU members) from its Board meeting. Though Chair Peter Gelblum was the voice demanding that everyone leave, the rest of the Board remained silent, and "activist" Steve Pleich insisted that prior willingness to have members of the public present was only ...
Posted: Tue May 21, 2013 11:55AM
California Trust Act Moves Forward - by Steve Pleich
Trust and Equal Protection Under the Law
Posted: Sun May 19, 2013 2:50PM
Video of Take Back Santa Cruz-supported Clean Team Harassing Homeless Forced Off Internet - by Robert Norse
A week ago, writer Jeremy Leonard posted a video with faces disguised of a member of the Clean Team threatening and harassing a homeless camper as he and others did one of their regular "clean-up's". The video was only up very briefly before it was taken down. A few days ago it reappeared as part of a long interview Leonard did with former Clean Team founder T.J. Magallanes. The interview--still up as of this writing--provoked dozens of comments, and reportedly numerous threats against Le...
Posted: Wed May 15, 2013 11:31PM
Desal Advocacy and Conflict of Interest - Santa Cruz and Soquel Creek Water District - by Paul Gratz
Last week at the so-called special joint study session, the City of Santa Cruz and Soquel Creek Water District rolled out their advocacy campaign to build political and public acceptance for the desal EIR study and approval of the regional desal plant. All eyes are now on Santa Cruz , which should be considered the litmus test for the Monterey Bay Marine Sanctuary’s desal future. If the Santa Cruz “expandable” regional desal plant is approved, then desal industry leaders can easily pur...
Posted: Mon May 13, 2013 10:02PM
What $160,000 dollars a year buys in contracts to ‘First Alarm’ - by Razer Ray
Can you IMAGINE how many jobs… jobs for Santa Cruz youths could be subsidized with that amount of money?
Posted: Tue May 7, 2013 11:57AM
Public Hysteria Task Force Has 1st Meeting Tonight 6 PM Tony Hill Room Civic Auditorium SC - by Robert Norse
The "Public Safety" Task Force, hand-picked by Mayor Hillary Bryant, has its first meeting tonight at 6 PM in the small Tony Hill sideroom at the Civic Auditorium on Church St. across from City Council chambers. According to staff person Scott Collins, the meeting will not be televised, though he intends to bring a small audio recorder. The room accommodates a much smaller number of people than the City Council chambers across the street or the main Civic auditorium assembly room in the sa...
Posted: Tue May 7, 2013 9:24AM
Pro-desal EIR marketing campaign pitches “green boutique” plant, downplays expansion - by Paul Gratz
On Tuesday, May 7, the Santa Cruz City Council and Soquel Creek Water Board will hold a 7 PM special study session about the Regional Seawater Desal Project Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) expected to be released on May 13. Ironically, the pro-desal EIR kick-off coincides with the six month anniversary of the overwhelming passage (72%) of Measure P. The November election vote created a Charter Amendment guaranteeing Santa Cruz City residents the right to vote on the construction of th...
Posted: Mon May 6, 2013 3:53PM
Santa Cruz Desal EIR Detached From Reality? - by Paul Gratz
On Tuesday, May 7 at 7 PM, the Santa Cruz City Council will hold a special study session about the Regional Seawater Desal Project Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) which is expected to be released next week.
Posted: Fri May 3, 2013 12:29PM
Who is funding, operating and administering the 180/180 project? - by John E. Colby
After Santa Cruz journalist/activist Robert Norse was unable to obtain the list of those managing the 180/180 project, I submitted several California Public Records Act (CPRA) requests to answer my own questions about who operates, administers and funds 180/180. This is important to me because I believe the 180/180 project should be open, transparent and accountable. For example, several disabled homeless people I have advocated for and represented — individuals with serious medical ...
Posted: Fri May 3, 2013 12:29AM
Rallying for Immigration Reform on May Day in Santa Cruz - by Alex Darocy
This year on May Day, the Santa Cruz community rallied at the Town Clock in support of immigration reform.
Posted: Thu May 2, 2013 5:11PM
Sleep and Resistance in Downtown Santa Cruz - by Alex Darocy
On April 17 a group of homeless community members in Santa Cruz initiated a high visibility sleep-protest, which was held downtown at the main branch of the post office. Sleepers subsequently occupied several locations outside of the front of the building for four days, with many individuals continuing to sleep there in protest after being cited for violating the sleeping ban or for obstructing the sidewalk. Some of those cited under Santa Cruz's municipal code 6.36.010, the ban on sleep in p...
Posted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:48PM
Idle No More and Respecting Mother Earth in Hollister - by Alex Darocy
On April 27 community members in Hollister gathered in solidarity with the Idle No More movement and First Nations people. Organizers of the gathering asked supporters to, "join the Communities of hollister as we gather with songs and prayers in solidarity with our Northern Brothers and Sisters and all Indigenous People."
Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2013 4:42PM
Pedal-Powered Revelry with Santa Cruz Bike Party - by Bradley Allen
On Friday, April 26, bicycle enthusiasts gathered at the Bike Church before departing on the Santa Cruz Bike Party, a mellow social ride accented with amplified music. Organizers say the event is "designed to build community, not to clash with car drivers, police, or residents."
Posted: Sat Apr 27, 2013 9:27PM
Gabriel Jumped by Homeless Haters near Cabrillo College Wednesday - by Robert Norse
I received a phone call yesterday from a formerly homeless man, now a Cabrillo student named Gabriel. He gave the following report of being beaten Wednesday 4-24 near Cabrillo College as he headed for class. Subsequently he checked in with the Cabrillo Health Clinic, but was reluctant to contact the police, having heard from other formerly homeless people that police declined to investigate such incidents. He mentioned the case of a guy named Zack, whose picture was prominently posted on Face...
Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2013 11:50AM
Internationally Beloved World Blues Musician, Bob Brozman, Passes Away at Age 59 - by Denise Ryan
Santa Cruz, California (April 25, 2013) Bob Brozman was found dead at his home in Santa Cruz, CA in the evening of April 23, 2013. Brozman, the steel-guitar innovator who got his start playing on the streets of Santa Cruz, died at age 59.
Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:42AM
Westside Citrus Harvest with Santa Cruz Fruit Tree Project - by Bradley Allen
On Sunday, April 21, 2013, with spring in the air and trees full of fruit, the Santa Cruz Fruit Tree Project, a grassroots organization that seeks out residents willing to share their surplus fruit, harvested at approximately ten residences on the Westside of Santa Cruz. The group of over a dozen, which included both first-time pickers as well as seasoned veterans, gathered at the entrance to Neary Lagoon on California St. before splitting into teams.
Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:22PM
Four Twenty 2013 in Porter Meadow at UC Santa Cruz - by Bradley Allen
On Saturday, April 20, 2013, thousands of people participated in the annual 420 pilgrimage to Porter Meadow at UC Santa Cruz. Once again, the counterculture cannabis celebration brought people of diverse backgrounds together for an afternoon under the hot sun.
Posted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 11:47AM
Watsonville Idle No More! - by Teko One
Watsonville Idle No More!
Posted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 10:38PM
Sleep-Out Continues For Second Night - by Robert Norse
Interviews with Cody, Freedom, and Andrew, three of the visible sleepers who were in last night's protest will be speaking about the issues at the Sub Rosa Cafe Tonight from 8 to 9 PM, and then in front of the post office continuing the Sleep-Out for a second night.
Posted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:07PM