Squid Fry 03.14.13
Squidspeak, Spoken Here
Thursday, March 14, 2013
POLICING ONE SQUARE MILE… On a recent stroll down Carmel’s Ocean Avenue, Squid discovered the quaint street just crawling with cops. Even though the bulk of Carmel police responses are to traffic violations, the PD wants a deeper reach. After a 15-year hiatus, the Carmel Citizen Police Academy revved back up in 2012; this year’s training begins April 10. “It’s not just being reactive. It’s being proactive,” Sergeant Mel Mukai tells Squid.
There’s schooling on traffic stops – and illicit drugs, crime-scene investigation, use of force and gangs. Just the skills every Carmel resident can use. But it’s about more than cracking down on crime, Mukai says; “It’s the spirit of nationalism.”
The free, 10-week academy is open to the legally squeaky-clean: no felony convictions, criminal cases – and no pending civil cases. So if you’ve been sued by some debt consolidator, you don’t qualify to learn how the cops monitor traffic-by-the-sea.
STICKS AND STONES… The painful death of the Regional Desalination Project won Best Scandal in the Weekly’s Best Of readers’ poll last year, but that doesn’t mean Squid’s done plucking treasures from that watery grave. The politics at Marina Coast Water District are still ugly, and notoriously cantankerous Board Director Howard Gustafson is still providing laughs.
Gustafson, suddenly outnumbered since the election, is taking out his anger on Board President Tom Moore in emails that found their way to Squid. In one, he calls Moore “a typical piece of arrogant crap.” In another, he calls Moore a “moron,” refers to his “little partner tweedle-dumb” (Director Peter Le? Jan Shriner?), and adds, “You better not be dealing with that idiot [County Supervisor] Jane Parker.” Squid notes the second email – the “moron” one – was sent to the entire Marina Coast board. Which may be a violation of the Brown Act.
Gustafson won’t respond, but Squid gathers this has to do with the $20 million claim Marina Coast filed against the county last year, alleging the county should compensate the district for the project’s failure. Gustafson wants that money back, dammit. Moore, who adorably attempts to raise the discourse above the playground level, responds: “It’s unfortunate that Director Gustafson used undignified language… However, I believe that the entire board and staff at Marina Coast Water District want the district to be repaid.”
Since both the Monterey County Water Resources Agency and Marina Coast are going after the other for that money down the drain, and both share the blame, Squid thinks a settlement is the obvious solution. Just don’t try to tell that to Mad Howie.