CITY COUNCIL NOTES

By Emilio, on Feb 29, 2012

CITY COUNCIL NOTES

City Manager Carlos Palacios Makes Bold Statement

At last night’s city council meeting, City Manager Carlos Palacios seemed to get somewhat feisty, especially after I said that the Manabe-Ow project lacked transparency. In response, Palacios said that it was always known that Redevelopment Agency (RDA) money was going to be needed to complete the project and that this was also explained to the Grand Jury. Some members of the G.J. were also present at the city council meeting so I think Palacios was directing his comments at them. Sure, that’s a fact. But, as I responded to Palacios and who didn’t disagree, the public and the city council were never advised that the George-Ow property, prime farm land, had to be first designated as “blight” before the city could use RDA monies to help build the Business Park. And, regardless of what was said or not disclosed, Gov. Brown put a monkey wrench in the project when he abolished RDAs. 

I thought Palacios was going to blow a fuse when I brought up the “blight” issue, and I thought I saw spittle. He came out swinging and said that construction of the project could start as early as next year. What? Yet another surprise! Although, George Ow was probably more surprised than anybody because who is going to pony up the needed $33 million to build the Business Park? We know the city doesn’t have that kind of money.

I couldn’t see George Ow’s reaction but I thought to myself, I know that if I was a developer and my project was going to cost 33 million greenbacks and a city manager committed my money and a time line for completion of my project, I would wish for a set of Depends.

On a similar subject, have you ever heard of the Kickapoo Indians? This Indian tribe owns a casino in Eagle Pass Texas. I know that it may sound crazy but I think a casino in Watsonville would create jobs and be a great boom to our economy, but then what do I know?

But, City Manager Palacios didn’t stop with his promises. He also said that our Police Force and our Fire Department would not be facing cuts or layoffs because our budget has not been better since the past three years. I wondered if he had just heard soon- to- be- departed Finance Director Mr. Marc Pimentel explain that our budget should be faced with caution because of the uncertainty of how the state is going to balance its budget. The state could go after more of our city’s money. Tell you what, when the city council is presented with the end of the year budget, yours truly will be wearing Depends because I think we are going to be faced with another surprise.  

Ms. Rhea DeHart Blasts Register-Pajaronian?

When Ms. Rhea DeHart, our city’s treasure and icon of our community, speaks, everybody listens as we all should. I have to admit my bias for this wonderful lady that we are so lucky to have.

Well, at last night’s city council meeting she explained she reads 3 newspapers, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Santa Cruz Sentinel, and the Register-Pajaronian. She made it clear that she is dependent on the Chronicle to read about national issues from syndicated columnists. And, she also made it clear that she would rather like to read about local issues by local columnists/writers in local newspapers.

I recommend that the Register-Pajaronian take heed from a very wise and intelligent woman because the rumblings on the street are that the Register-Parjaronian is getting worse instead of better.

There is a new newspaper being published by ex-Register Pajaronian Editor Jon Chown. It’s called the Monterey Bay News and Views.  I hear that he will print your views as well as the Watsonville Patch which seems to be gaining readers by the minute.    

 

  

No casinos in Watsonville! What with the alcoholism and rampant drug abuse, all we need is to add a gambling addiction to the mix. Not to mention the potential increase in counterfeiting, embezzzlement, and forgery just to name a few.

No, I'd never vote for a casino in town, let's stick with a soccer stadium.

 

Great articles Emilio. GJ making their every other Tuesday meeting.

Something that stuck out with me was this. When Mr. Martinelli went over time and Alejo didn't like what he was saying, he cut off his mike. BUT Mr. Ow spoke for probably 5 to 10 minutes and not one bell was rung. Hummm. is that called fair.

 

 

So the city council is ggoing ahead with this plan. Who will pay the lawyer and lawsuit when the Farm Agency sues against the city for trying to take perfectly good farm land and claim it's blight. What about the Sierra Club and the state farm agency. Believe me, there will be a suit.

Another thing is why have the Romos gotten money whenever they want it?
It seems that they used redev money as their own bank account while other
people that needed some of it were denied. How many council members did they give money to that voted on them getting redev money? What a crooked bunch!

I don't think any candidate that has received money for his campaighn from either Ow or Alonzo (his bagman) should be able to vote on any development that Ow is involved. Daniel Dodge and others have received money either from Ow or his bagman Alonzo. It is a conflict of interest.

The Grand Jury should be apprised of these irregularities.

$157K in sewer fees isn't even worth tracking, but $160K in firefighter overtime causes a full blown budget crisis? The slum master gets a hand while firefighters lose paid leave?-- same ol' story-- punish the monkey, while the organ grinder flees...

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