Salinas police officers, and most of us, would not disagree with Estrada's statement about the need for "Intervention so that our kids have more things to do. Busy children have little time to go astray."
Thank you for reporting that "several residents" at this meeting cited concerns about police abuse, and others spoke of intimidation. That is important to acknowledge. And were you to ask additional Salinas residents, you'd start hearing many stories of appreciation for Salinas PD. That would include stories of the PD's own expressions of concern about kids having healthy things to do. Here's just one example: http://marilynch.com/blog/bicycle-accidents-with-injuries-in-salinas-july-2012.html
Salinas police face a lot of immediate pressures, being expected to keep the peace in Monterey County's largest city. Keep in mind our county has the highest youth homicide rate in California, for the second year, with much--though certainly not all--of that due to gang activity in Salinas. While a variety of community efforts need to be made, some of those need to be by Salinas PD. And we can't ask Salinas police to do more to reverse this youth homicide rate with fewer resources. Even a front-page story in the New York Times acknowledged they were "fighting gang violence on a shoestring" budget. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/30/us/in-salinas-fighting-gang-violence-on-a-shoestring.html?_r=0
Jeff Mitchell interviewed Salinas Police Chief Kelly McMillin for the Salinas Californian last August. Take the time to read that interview with Kelly before deciding how you feel about tax for public safety. http://www.thecalifornian.com/article/20120818/NEWS01/308180017/CALIFORNIAN-Q-Kelly-McMillin-new-chief-fully-charge?nclick_check=1
Thanks to Sara Rubin and the Weekly for this story, and to Alex Cappelli and Megan Tolbert for their steadfast support for improving bicycling, walking, and transit use.
Indeed, approving the multimodal plan is only a first step. Pedaling or walking about town was part of the process, but so was sitting in committee meetings and careful study of the plan draft. Cappelli's generously giving his time in this sit-down volunteer work (when this Velo rider would surely prefer spending those hours in the bike saddle) reflects awareness that "the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."
Passionate citizen volunteers like Alex Cappelli will be critical in the push for implementation of projects and programs (especially since, as of January 2013, the City of Monterey does not have a Safe Routes to School coordinator, nor will they for the foreseeable future).
People who want better conditions for biking, walking, and use of public transit can take even a small step now. Let the City Council know you support the multimodal plan! For more info, see: http://marilynch.com/blog/monterey-council-member-no-other-choice-to-survive-bikewalkbus.html
Thanks for the roundup of some of the many good reasons to visit the National Steinbeck Center.
As the Steinbeck Center encourages (see "Plan Your Visit" tab of their website, then "Offers & Discounts"): Bike (or bike-and-ride) there! They give a discount on any admission level, on Thursdays year-round, because they are participants in the HER Helmet Thursdays project.
Steinbeck lovers will be glad to know that the nearby Steinbeck House, John Steinbeck's boyhood home, is also a HER Helmet Thursdays participant.
Visit Monterey County's bike information hub, BicyclingMonterey.com, for detailed listings for the National Steinbeck Center, Steinbeck House, and hundreds of other places that give Thursday discounts to bicyclists.
Congratulations to Logan, and to Burnham Coaching as well. We look forward to following Logan's career. Thanks for this story, Yumang.
Won't be surprised if I see Logan getting to the Brit or East Village by bike--especially on Thursdays. Both are HER Helmet Thursdays spots (Thursday discounts for males and females on bikes).
The closure of Salinas Valley Fish House is indeed a sad loss for Monterey County. I appreciated the consistency of Tony DiGirolamo's warm hospitality and fine dining in this historic Oldtown Salinas spot. Special thanks to Tony for being an early leader in the HER Helmet Thursdays project (giving discounts on Thursdays to males and females who bike), as reported by the Salinas Californian 2/1/10: http://www.thecalifornian.com/article/20100201/NEWS01/2010306/Salinas-bike-riders-offered-discounts-local-businesses?nclick_check=1
HER Helmet Thursdays is a long-term ecology-economy sustainability project, not a short-term discount promotion. This is a grassroots movement. Your help is needed in referring new and repeat patrons (both visitors and locals) to your favorite businesses and organizations who are helping to preserve our environment by encouraging more bicycling. Learn about the project's goals, and who is participating, here: http://marilynch.com/blog/her-helmet-thursdays/goals-and-overview
Light & Motion benefits our county in so many ways, including by supporting the Monterey County Probation Department Youth Center's bicycle repair and safety class. To learn more, see: http://marilynch.com/blog/getting-back-on-the-right-path-the-bike-path-that-is-volunteer-to-teach-bicycle-safety-and-repair-at-monterey-countys-youth-treatment-center.html
Here are two of the many ways to help:
East Salinas residents want to serve as bicycling role models in their neighborhoods--and they need donations of used bikes. http://marilynch.com/blog/hassle-free-holiday-parking-in-a-season-of-giving.html
Safe Routes to School maps are available, in English and Spanish, for all San Benito County schools. In Monterey County, such maps don't yet exist. However, five Monterey County elementary schools will soon be tackling the challenge of getting more students to bike or walk to school. See blog post from Claudia Meléndez Salinas, then get involved! http://montereycountyschools.blogspot.com/2012/12/safe-routes-grant-to-benefit-monterey.html
For more, see the "Children and Teens" section at BicyclingMonterey.com.
For added details on this local tradition organized by Jim Wrona, also see http://marilynch.com/blog/critical-christmas-ride-2010.html at BicyclingMonterey.com. There you'll find answers to some common questions, along with California bike laws and safety tips for biking in the dark. Check them out, so you're better prepared to support Jim and other participants in keeping this annual event safe and fun for everyone.
Devin of Bay Bikes, Frank and Michelle of Adventures by the Sea, and Mat of Blazing Saddles were present. These representatives of the bike rental component of Monterey County’s bicycling industry expressed concerns and discussed possible solutions with the consultants and others in attendance.
One idea urged for consideration was locating some bikesharing stations in Salinas. At present, visitors and residents of the Monterey County seat who desire a bicycle rental must travel elsewhere to get one--no bike rentals are available in Salinas. Bikesharing could help fill this gap.
For more, see http://marilynch.com/blog/1128-meeting-1221-comment-deadline-draft-monterey-county-bike-sharing-feasibility-study.html
Add'l tips for 15th Annual Race Night on the Row: http://www.bit.ly/MotoGPTips
Reggae Fest again has free bike valet parking, courtesy of Green Pedal Couriers: http://www.bit.ly/MoBayReggae
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