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Feb 10th
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Santa Cruz News

Town Hall

Town Hall with Rep. Sam Farr

Town Hall with Rep. Sam Farr

Congress did not taken action on the Federal Farm Bill before its Sept. 30 expiration date. What does this mean for Americans, and what can we expect to happen on the Farm Bill front after the election in November?

One of the biggest failures of the do-nothing Republican-led Congress was allowing the Farm Bill to expire. The Farm Bill is a vital piece of legislation that helps regulate the prices of the food we grow. This is a bill that doesn’t just benefit the Midwest states but has value for the entire nation, including families here in California.

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Environment

Sonic Waves

Sonic Waves

PG&E's fault line research could blast marine mammals with sound

Marine mammals including whales, dolphins, seals and sea otters that live and migrate along the Central California coast could be in for some mind-rattling commotion come November if Pacific Gas & Electric Co. receives clearance next month for a controversial research project. California's largest electric company is seeking permits to conduct high-energy and possibly harmful seismic testing in the waters just offshore of the Diablo Canyon Power Plant in San Luis Obispo County.

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Local News

Local Tooth Fairy Turns Twenty

Local Tooth Fairy Turns Twenty

Dientes celebrates two decades of nonprofit dentistry

Since its inception, Dientes Community Dental Care has focused on reaching underserved populations. At first, when the nonprofit was founded by a small group of private dentists in 1992, that population was HIV-infected patients who, because they were shunned from dental insurance plans, had nowhere else to turn for dental care.

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Town Hall

Town Hall with Supervisor John Leopold

Town Hall with Supervisor John Leopold

There has been a lot of community discussion about the kind of development happening throughout the county. How can residents get involved in shaping upcoming land use decisions in the county?

The last comprehensive county planning process for the unincorporated Live Oak, Soquel, Santa Cruz Gardens and Aptos communities was completed in 1994 as part of the General Plan update. In the nearly 20 years since that plan was adopted, many aspects of our community, from transportation to development, have changed. During this time of limited public resources, a comprehensive General Plan update is not anticipated in the foreseeable future. However, we do have a unique opportunity to envision our community's sustainable future.

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Local News

A Place To Call Home

A Place To Call Home

A glimpse at what life is like after being housed by the 180/180 campaign

When Peter Cook wakes up in his new bed, with a roof over his head, he says it takes him a moment to realize where he is. And then, for another moment, he questions whether he's even supposed to be there.

Sitting at his kitchen table, Cook surveys his living quarters with wide-eyed amazement. The space is mostly unfurnished—in the living room there is a dresser, an unplugged television on the floor and a Yamaha keyboard, one of the few possession he brought with him.

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Business

Pulling Together

Pulling Together

After a recession-induced slump, the local tourism industry finds its footing

Along with the recession’s worst impacts—ballooning unemployment and rampant foreclosures, to name but two—the option of going on vacation disappeared from many people’s summer plans.

Santa Cruz began feeling the impact of this by 2009, when visitation dipped below Santa Cruz’s economic comfort zone and the persevering visitors spent less time and less money in the county. According to Smith Travel Research, annual hotel occupancy decreased from 55.6 percent in 2008 to 48.8 percent in 2009.

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Local News

Great To Be Back

Great To Be Back

After spending the last four and half years as the publisher for three community weeklies down in San Diego, it feels great to be back.

I always felt a special vibe and energy when working in the Santa Cruz area. And to now also call it my home takes it to another level. My attachment with Santa Cruz began many years ago. From elementary through high school, I spent many days with my great aunt and uncle in their beautiful Victorian on the corner of Windham and Caledonia streets, as my family would escape the burning inferno also known as the Central Valley in the summertime. Walking down to the corner grocery store as a small boy with 10 cents in my pocket to pick and choose from the assorted array of penny candies, going to the Boardwalk, and the smell of homemade biscuits, boysenberry pie and chicken and dumplings are all fond memories of those times spent in Santa Cruz.

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Local News

Needle In A Law Stack

Needle In A Law Stack

California passes law that adds a step to opting out of immunizations

As Gov. Jerry Brown’s Sept. 30 bill-signing deadline drew to a close, he finished signing or vetoing nearly 700 bills that had stacked up on his desk in hopes of becoming laws. One of the lucky winners was AB 2109, a bill that was introduced by Assemblymember Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) in February, and passed the California Senate 22 to 14 and assembly 59 to 21 in August.

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Local News

What’s At Stake?

What’s At Stake?

Proposition 30 proposes raising taxes to save public schools from more budget cuts

Over-packed kindergarten classrooms are just one example of the ways California public schools are tightening their resources to make up for budget cuts, but Santa Cruz County Superintendent of Schools Michael Watkins says that strategy can only go so far.

“Most of our revenue comes from increasing class size, but you can't just continue to add kids to a class to get more revenue,” he says. “It compromises the quality of our education.”

In the last four years, between $12 and $15 billion have been cut from the state's education budget. Those cuts came as major hits for public schools, but the problems trace back much further. 

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Local News

Ruling The Streets

Ruling The Streets

West Cliff Drive will become car-free for the first Santa Cruz Open Streets

In 2011, Santa Cruz resident Eleanor Mendoza crafted and sent an insightful, handwritten letter to the Santa Cruz City Council for a class assignment. In the letter, the then-9-year-old implored our elected officials to take a closer look at bicycle-related issues in town.

“I was the only one who wrote a letter to our mayor,” says Mendoza, mentioning her strong interest in working in governmental policy. 

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Making Dreams

Coen brothers salute vintage Hollywood in sly comedy ‘Hail, Caesar!’
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Latest Comments

 

Pub Watch

Mega gastro pub-in-progress at the Old Sash Mill, plus the best pasta dish downtown

 

How do you know love is real?

When you feel the groove in your heart and you’re inspired to dance. Becca Bing, Boulder Creek, Teacher

 

Temple of Umami

Watsonville’s Miyuki is homestyle cooking, Japanese-style

 

How would you stop people from littering?

Teach them from the time that they’re small that it’s not an appropriate behavior. Juliet Jones, Santa Cruz, Claims Adjuster