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Apr 16th
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Santa Cruz News

Town Hall

Budget Crisis

Budget CrisisWhat is the difference between the Democrat’s budget proposal that failed passage last week and Governor Schwarzenegger’s proposal?


The irony about the Democratic budget that failed passage last week is that 45 percent of the proposals we voted on were the exact same proposals as those in the governor’s May revise.  Of the remaining portion of the budget proposed last week, at least 93 percent contained a portion of the governor’s budget proposals.  ( It may be ironic, but I doubt readers will applaud how aligned with the governor the Dems are. Best not to draw attention to the similarities, since most people seem to loathe the governor’s proposal right now.

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Business

Green or Greenwashing? Announcement from Home Depot sparks enthusiasm and controversy

Green or Greenwashing? Announcement from Home Depot sparks enthusiasm and controversy

An eco-conscious approach to pest management is now up for debate thanks to a memo recently released by a Home Depot senior executive.

After a year and a half of persistent negotiations with the Santa Cruz nonprofit Ecology Action, Home Depot released a memo in early May that supports integrated pest management. The approach uses low-toxic methods to curb the critters that munch on garden veggies and dash across the kitchen counter.

Sent by Senior Vice President Ron Jarvis, the memo gives the green light for California Home Depots to participate in eco-minded training programs lead by environmental nonprofits and government agencies. Fliers and product labels made by environmental groups can be dispersed in stores, so long as individual store managers approve.

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Business

Community Brew AgroEco Coffee links Santa Cruz and Costa Rica

Coffee is no mere drink. It can be a crutch, sometimes a drug, a social lubricant and a cash cow, the tissue of many a first date and a multitude of jittery sleepless nights. Throughout history, it’s been both banned and consecrated, outlawed by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, shunned by many Seventh-Day Adventists, and elevated to a sacrament by 16th century Sufi mystics. It’s one of the most traded commodities in the world, as well as one of the most valuable, second only to petroleum.

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Environment

Pacific Green Inn

Pacific Green Inn

Downtown’s new Pacific Blue Inn brightens up lower Pacific Avenue

The elderly man with a walker who didn’t want to take the stairs; the Arizonan who insisted on being “green”; the carpet-phobic Swedish couple that loves bamboo floors; the bride and groom who wanted to rent out a hotel for their wedding party without breaking the bank.

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Local News

Slugs Catch the Bug

Slugs Catch the Bug

UCSC students ready to offer free health-care in Honduras

Daniel Truong meets me over a cup of coffee during UC Santa Cruz’s finals week, yet, unlike most of his peers, he isn’t fretting over studying or upcoming exams. Truong, a third-year neuroscience major, had a biology final in the morning; his physics test is in a day. He says he simply has bigger things to think about.

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Local News

CASA gets it's Dream a CASA

Foster children to benefit from the local non-profit’s new Watonsville home

Through large, automatic doors, down a long, sterile hallway, and up an old, musty elevator, a child finally reaches the familiar console of the CASA headquarters.

CASA, or Court Appointed Special Advocates, is a private non-profit that matches trained adult volunteer mentors with a foster child. Founded in 1992, the organization currently operates out of offices on the third floor of the old Watsonville hospital. The locale is also where advocates can bring their foster child to play; although the children’s play room is a 10 by 10 room with no windows.

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Environment

Here Comes the Sun

Here Comes the Sun

Santa Cruz and the county approve energy efficiency pilot program

Santa Cruz is a step closer to lassoing the enigmatic power of the sun after the city and county’s coinciding decisions on May 12 to move forward on a program that will make “going solar” more accessible and affordable for property owners. Both the City Council and Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to advance the Energy Independence and Economic Stimulus Initiative, which will involve launching a pilot program sometime later this year.

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Local News

Put Your Money Where Your Vote Is

Put Your Money Where Your Vote Is

GT’s Guide to the Special Election Initiatives

It’s fair to say that, in the current economic climate, we’ve got our minds on our money and our money on our minds. From the daily Dow Jones ticker and a sinking economy to furloughs and pervasive budget cuts, no one entity—person, business, city, county or state—has escaped the effects, including the Golden State. Earlier this year, after 90 tiring days of impasse, the California Legislature finally

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Town Hall

Plenty of Work

Plenty of Work

Stimulus money funds Summer Youth Employment Program

JoAnne Allen was 15 years old when she got her first job working at a department store. Looking back, Allen, now the manager of Student Support Services at the Santa Cruz County Office of Education (CoE), is thankful for having been an employed teen.

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Town Hall

On The Chopping Block?

On The Chopping Block?

All eyes await the fate of UCSC’s Community Studies Program

Forty years ago, at what was then a small, up-and-coming public university, a man by the name of Bill Friedland founded the Community Studies Department. It has since become a trademark of the school, UC Santa Cruz, and synonymous with its liberal atmosphere.

 

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Aries Solar Festival

Sunday is Palm Sunday. Symbolizing victory and triumph, paradise, sacrifice and martyrdom, the Pisces World Teacher entered Jerusalem (City of Peace) on a donkey (signifying humility).

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Animal Magnetism

Bear, mouse dare to be friends in charming ‘Ernest and Celestine’ It’s not exactly Romeo and Juliet. It’s not even a romance, although it is a love story about two individuals separated by prejudice who find the courage to form an unshakable bond despite the rules and traditions that keep them apart.

 

Printer's Devil

Iconic editor Buz Bezore, who died last month at the age of 68, left a huge mark on Santa Cruz journalism   Eventually, it’s all a blur. You live long enough, and maybe a little too hard at times, so that when you hit the rewind button of faded memory, it moves so fast that you can hardly sort and gather the details. One scene skips to the next, and to the next, without proper editing or sequencing. Chronologies get distorted. Which came first: stealing the chickens or coloring the eggs?
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Foodie File: Yan Flower

Yan Belleville has owned Yan Flower, an affordable Chinese restaurant in Downtown Santa Cruz, with her husband Raymond for eight years, and it’s a family affair. Her brother, sister, sister-in-law, and cousins work there too. Locals know the joint for its massive lunch specials starting at $4.

 

How would you feel about a tech industry boom in Santa Cruz?

I feel like it would ruin the small old-town feeling of Santa Cruz. It wouldn’t be the same Surf City kind of vacation town that it is. Antoinette BennettSanta Cruz | Construction Management

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

Comanche Cellars

Pinot Noir 2010 I first tasted Comanche Cellars Pinot when a friend brought a bottle to share over lunch at Center Street Grill in Santa Cruz. Upon trying it, I knew I had to find out more about it.