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Readers comments 8-26-16

The dividing (Gold) line

Dear Editor:

I have noticed that the complaints about putting the Gold Line through Claremont amount to the line using a bridge to cross Indian Hill. Oh me, oh my, that’ll cut off the poor folks down here in Baja Claremont. We already are cut off (Guys? Metrolink?) Having the Gold Line run street level would only lock the gate on us, causing us to leave Claremont through Pomona.

So, city council, can you please stop spending money we don’t have and put the bridge in?

Daniel Davis

Claremont

 

Depressing Indian Hill

Dear Editor:

Karen Rosenthal, in her letter of August 19, argued against running Indian Hill Boulevard beneath the Metrolink and Gold Line tracks. I find her arguments to be specious.

Ms. Rosenthal claims that the “depression would begin at about Harrison Avenue and end near Arrow Highway.” I urge her to drive to the Towne Avenue underpass south of Holt Avenue in Pomona and take accurate measurements. She would see that the underpass runs between Monterey Street and Second Avenue, a much shorter distance than she posited. In fact, the southern slope, according to my pacing, is equivalent in length to the distance from our tracks to First Street on the north and to the end of the Indian Hill center divider on the south.

Ms. Rosenthal claims that “the project would cut off access to storefronts on Indian Hill Boulevard.” Not necessarily. The through lanes could proceed beneath the tracks while the parking lanes would front the stores affected and serve as access to parking areas.

Hypothesizing that more than $30 million in bonds would be required in addition to “what Gold Line Authority said they might cough up,” Ms. Rosenthal seems to be trying to scare the readers. Where does the $30 million number come from? Does Ms. Rosenthal know something that the rest of us don’t?

Ms. Rosenthal’s real motive for wanting to quash the underpass concept surfaces in her final paragraph. She reminds the reader that the school board “has a bond issue up for approval in the November election, plus there is the prospect of a bond approval request for a new police station.” Could it be that Ms. Rosenthal thinks these two issues would be voted down if a plan to eliminate traffic backup on Indian Hill Boulevard, make the annoying train whistles history, and make the crossing safe for pedestrians and motor vehicles were adopted?

To me, the benefits of an underpass far outweigh the extra cost—if indeed there even is an extra cost.

Jay B. Winderman

Claremont

 

Pitiful post

Dear Editor:

I love living in Claremont, but the post office on Harvard is a disgrace. Surely, the worst-kept building in Claremont should not be catty-corner from City Hall. A little landscaping and a little trash pickup would go a long way toward improving the look of the corner of Second and Harvard.

With the new museum coming around the corner and additional visitors to our beautiful city, we need every building looking its best, especially the government buildings. Come on City Hall, let’s get something done.

Ted L. Ritchie

Claremont

 

SB 1107

Dear Editor:

State Senate Bill 1107 would remove the 28-year-old ban on public financing of campaigns that keeps our state and local governments from finding innovative ways to approach campaign regulation. This bill does not establish a public financing program or require any government to offer public financing. It merely provides an option for innovation, including voluntary programs like those already in place in six charter cities.

Other provisions work to combat corruption and undue influence by banning foreign money from state and local candidate elections and requiring public officials convicted of corruption to donate unspent campaign money to the general fund.

Please join the League of Women Voters in contacting and urging your state Senator to vote yes on this important bill. The League has long worked to promote maximum citizen participation in the political process and combat public cynicism about government. SB 1107 will create flexibility for local governments to explore public financing options that increase voter participation, restore public trust, and strengthen our representative democracy. Please join us in taking action to support this valuable bill.

Ellen Taylor

VP for Advocacy

LWV of the Claremont Area

 

Superintendent, board outline need for school bond measure

Dear Editor:

We appreciate the opportunity to address questions posed by Mr. Gunter in his letter to the COURIER on August 19. Our goal is to ensure that the entire community is aware of the process that was followed prior to the board of education taking action to place a facilities bond on the November 2016 ballot. 

Since the passage of Proposition 13 in 1978, the state of California has not adequately funded either the operational or facility components of school district budgets.   

Most schools within the Claremont Unified School District were built over 50 years ago and have reached the age at which additional major renovation and modernization is required. The state expects districts like CUSD to fund the majority of its facilities needs through local efforts. Locally-raised funds, such as the bond proposed in Measure G, are one of the few mechanisms school districts in California have to meet these needs.

In order to have a comprehensive understanding of the district’s facilities needs, a facilities needs assessment was conducted during the spring and summer of 2015 and identified $111 million in facilities projects. 

Throughout the winter and spring of 2016, district staff and the board of education participated in a very extensive community engagement process to discuss the facilities needs of the district. Between January and May, district staff conducted 39 presentations regarding district facilities to Claremont community groups including parent faculty associations, civic leaders, businesses and retirement communities. These meetings also included time for discussion and feedback from our stakeholders.

In addition, an online community engagement survey regarding potential facilities projects was conducted. More than 600 people participated in the process, which provided district staff and the board of education with an opportunity to have a strong understanding of what the community values. The survey results are available for review on our website at cusd.thoughtexchange.com/welcome.

During a special meeting of the board of education on June 2, 2016, school district staff presented the board with the feedback from the 39 community engagement meetings, as well as the results from the community engagement survey. Community members were in attendance and had an opportunity to express their opinions directly to the board.

During the board meeting held on August 4, 2016, the board of education passed a resolution to place a facilities bond on the November ballot to fund the following projects: replace identified portables with permanent modular units; upgrade identified classrooms; refurbish and repair the El Roble and CHS pools; upgrade the El Roble and CHS locker rooms; upgrade the CHS music building; replace the CHS student center; reconfigure and upgrade the CHS food preparation building; replace the flooring and add HVAC to the CHS large gym; replace roofing at all schools except CHS; and replace HVAC and upgrade the electrical systems throughout all schools in the district.

Mr. Gunter raises a question as to why property taxes aren’t used to forestall a recovery demand. School districts are funded based on a legislative formula comprised of property taxes and other state revenues; that formula is not adequate enough to support capital projects. Without additional state funding above and beyond the current formula, and in the absence of local support in the form of bonds of this kind, a school district has limited ability to fund capital projects.

Assuming the passage of Measure G, it is expected that work will begin as early as spring of 2017, and should be completed within six to seven years. It is anticipated that bonds will be issued over three series during that six- to seven-year timeframe.

We appreciate the public’s questions, interest and support of Claremont Unified School District. Please feel free to contact the superintendent’s office by email at jelsasser@cusd.claremont.edu with any further questions or concerns.

Nancy Treser Osgood

President, Board of Education

Claremont Unified School District

 

Jim Elsasser, EdD.

Superintendent

Claremont Unified School District

 

When Donald Goes Marching Home

“When Johnny Comes Marching Home”

 

When Donald goes marching home again

  Hurrah, hurrah

We’ll all call out “Good riddance!” then

  Hurrah, hurrah

The men will cheer, the boys will shout

The ladies they will turn him out

And we’ll all feel gay when Donald goes marching home.

 

He doesn’t care a whit for truth

  For shame, for shame

He’s rude and crude and so uncouth

  For shame, for shame

He says he’ll make our country great

In fact he’ll foment fear and hate

So we’ll all feel gay when Donald goes marching home.

 

‘Gainst Mexicans he’d build a wall

  Says he, says he

If some are bad then so are all

  Says he, says he

His bigotry it knows no bounds

He makes alarmist and racist sounds

Oh, we’ll all feel gay when Donald goes marching home.

 

Says climate change is just a hoax

  Oh no, oh no

Invented by the Chinese folks

  Oh no, oh no

He’ll turn the earth into a dump

And name it after Donald Trump

So we’ll all feel gay when Donald goes marching home.

 

We want someone who’s cool and calm

  We pray, we pray

To have their fingers on the bomb

  We pray, we pray

And not someone who’d start a war

To settle up a trivial score

So we’ll all feel gay when Donald goes marching home.

 

He’ll curb the freedom of the press

  Beware, beware

Th’ economy will be a mess

  Beware, beware

His hands are small but his ego’s yuge

Now Hillary is our safe refuge

And we’ll all feel gay when Donald goes marching home.

 

Repeat first verse.

 

James Van Cleve

Claremont

 

 

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