Saturday, August 27, 2011
This is a small town. The City is not nor is it likely will it ever be able to assure that all people doing business in GT are in fact licensed to do business in GT, Pay Taxes, and obey the same codes and regulations required of homeowners.
This town has not added to it's Buying Power only the increase of competition. Stater's Deli will be taking customers away from our pre-existing restaurants. That isn't a net increase in sales just a relocation of sales. Some how, Jacobsen's CVS isn't facing the promised competition from a Stater's in house pharmacy. Yet, other businesses in GT are having their customer base pinched. Was there some Non Competition Agreement between Jacobsen and Brown, included in the sale of the land to Staters?
When will Stater's release the property at their old leased site so that some one else can pinch their customers, or create new jobs in GT, not just relocated jobs and services?
Either way, the economy is slowly recovering, and if GT were allowed to develope in a natural sustainable way slowly with out merly displacing a coustomer base for a favored business over other businesses our overall economy would be more stable, sustainable, and a contribution to the city, region, county, state and country. There is a bigger world... out there GT... you deserve no are obligated to produce more than pumps, mustard and ravioli, if your existence is to be assured.
GRAND TERRACE: Council approves restart of redevelopment
By DARRELL R. SANTSCHI
Staff Writer firstname.lastname@example.org
The Grand Terrace City Council is making it official and will pay the state in order to restart the city's redevelopment agency.
The council voted 5-0 Tuesday night to give final approval to an ordinance restarting the agency in 30 days, but will have to make what Mayor Walt Stanckiewitz called "extortion payments" to the state.
Two new state laws require local redevelopment agencies to either shut down redevelopment, used to fund public improvements, or voluntarily turn over a large chunk of redevelopment revenue to help balance the state budget.
Grand Terrace has joined in a lawsuit filed on behalf of redevelopment agencies throughout California challenging the constitutionality of the two state laws.
Even if that challenge is unsuccessful, city Community and Economic Development Director Joyce Powers said Grand Terrace will file an appeal this month of the amount the city would have to pay.
At present, the price tag would be $2.8 million this year and $670,000 in the 2012-13 fiscal year.
The city's appeal is being made on two fronts, although details have not yet been made public.
One would reduce the city's contribution by as much as $750,000. The other would save $400,000.
If the appeal is not successful, Powers said, the redevelopment agency would be able to function for only about 3½ years before its revenue, gleaned from property taxes, would not raise enough money to make its annual payment to the state. If the city wins its appeal, she said, the agency could survive five years.
By Melissa Pinion-Whitt
Created: 08/26/2011 07:08:35 AM PDT
A Riverside man died Thursday after he fell 50 feet from a palm tree in Grand Terrace.
Jeffrey Kenney, 56, was trimming a palm tree in the 22300 block of Barton Road at 12:16 p.m. when he fell, San Bernardino County coroner's officials said.
His safety rope was not fastened.
Paramedics took him to Loma Linda University Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at 1:11 p.m.
Tree trimmer falls to his death
06:50 AM PDT on Friday, August 26, 2011
A Riverside man was killed Thursday when he fell about 50 feet to the ground while trimming palm trees.
Jeffrey Kenney, 56, was contracted to trim palm trees in the 22300 block of Barton Road in Grand Terrace.
About 12:15 p.m., his safety rope became unfastened, causing him to fall to the ground. Kenney was taken to Loma Linda University
Medical Center where he was pronounced dead about an hour later.
The San Bernardino County district attorney's office and CAL-OSHA are investigating the death.
Yes the store looks nice, and the use of Green Building Methods is a welcome feature. That being said, there have been some comments that have been sent. Fresh Salad Bar at 6.99/lb is a high and most doubt there will be fresh salad for very long. In addition the fish looked great but most folks doubt there is sufficient demand to have that quality and variety of fish on a continuing basis.
It is nice to have the Dairy shelves have doors.
The staff was all friendly and trying to be helpful, but there were so many staff people there the store was extra crowed during the initial opening. Which leads to the next question. Why are people parking on unpaved land? Isn't there a code requirement that parking be done only on Improved Surface? Or is Decomposed Granite Sufficient for an "Improved Surface". Home owners would like to know if this is sufficient for everyone?
Missing from the prommised store... A full service Pharmacey, (Perhaps there was a revision because CVS is having a difficult go of it and a Wallgreens is in the works.) Market Saturation is a problem folks... Like the Blog hasn't been pointing this out for a long time..
It will take time for all of us to adjust to the additional stop light on Barton Road... be careful out there folks.
Don't forget about the Resturants and Stores in the GT Mall on Barton Rd and Mt. Vernon, Stater's Old Site. Dollar Tree, Laundrymat, Resturants, Dry Cleaner, Mail Mart, Kick Boxing and Do Nuts... all need you to remember they are there... Now parking will be easier.. perhaps you'll go to these stores more often.
Let's hope that Stater's will vacate the building quickly and make it available for the next occupant with out delay. Any vacant space is a detriment to the existing businesses and the community. As a matter of fact because Redevelopment Agency Funds and support were used to relocate Stater's any business suffering a loss as a result of the Redevelopment Agency's on Action can apply for financial compensation to off set some if not all their losses, until the Empty Space is leased and the property has a similar rate of traffic.
Stater's move was at least efficient and neat.
Thursday, August 04, 2011
Emails have been questioning why GrandPaTerrace has been more patient with Mayor Stanckiewits, and the New City Council and City Manager.
Let's get right down to it. I don't agree with all the decisions being made at the City. I would like the Citizens to have the opportunity to see the reality of a real bare bones budget and city operation. Perhaps this would be close the parks, close the Senior Center, pay for only Fire and Police, and nothing else. Or even stop being a city all together and be satisfied with County level services. At some point in time we should ask are we getting our money's worth? Is being a City better than being just part of the County? Are we missing out on some efficiencies because of our City Ego?
Now that being said. Mayor Stanckiewits and the City Council had a real campaign and the electorate was engaged in making an informed decision. NOW it is time to govern. All are dealing with what was left them. It is not like we are in an economy without trials, or that past administration left GT in financial order sufficient to stand without difficult decisions.
I will say I am less than impressed that Betsy Adams has not surrendered her contract compensation so that others may be retained. Basic services like mowing lawn and cleaning public toilets are in some ways more important to a city than a City Manager.
Council Member's McNaboe, Hays, Garcia are up for replacement or re-election this election cycle. It is important for Citizens to offer up an alternative candidate with alternative ideas so that voters have a choice in the election and direction of the City.
Citizens and Service Groups are stepping up, and filling in the needs of the community in ways that had been smothered by the prior administration. Civic Activity by Citizens and Community Groups is sustainable and beneficial on many levels of human endeavor. Citizens, commute long distance to their jobs, raise their children, participate in sports activities, and yes will spend time cleaning up a park or painting a wall. For the folks in City Hall earning big bucks to need a cleaning service to carry out their trash is a bit offensive. Sure the cleaning of ducts should be done by a professional, but really people working at city hall, take out your own trash and scrub a toilet now and then. Do you have maid service at home too?
First: Soccer Parents and organization stepped up and cleaned the park their children will be using for the Soccer Season. This is a great thing. Deep cleaning of tables and the snack bar in addition to park clean up was done by a team of volunteers of all ages. Parents and children worked together and made a day of the effort. Could the Soccer Team organize their participants in a way that they take on nearly all the maintenance of the park with perhaps the exception of mowing, and repairs to irrigation? Could the Base Ball Teams take on Pico Park in the same way? Corporation for Better Housing takes care of the Susan Petta Memorial Park as their residents are the majority benefactors of that park. Yes all these parks are public, but should not the people who use the park the most be willing to help with the upkeep of the park?
In addition, the general public needs to learn or re-learn the good rule of leaving a public place better than when you came. All people who see trash or debris on the ground could bend over and pick it up and put it in a trash can. Walkers abound in GT.. How about walking with a trash bag and some grippers... You don't have to slow down, just pick up what you can without breaking your pace and soon your bag will be full.
Second: The Lions Club's public service activity served over 300 people by providing eye glasses and eye health screenings. The terrific effort of the Lions Club is yet another example of how citizens as individuals and groups can rally the resources and people to a community need. The fact that so many needed assistance is also a reality that should not be unrecorded. Grand Terrace is often touted as being immune to the economic reality of the problems that are associated lower incomes. With high home costs, utilities, and the cost of commuting to work, many citizens are working paycheck to paycheck. Many don't have medical insurance, many do not have dental and vision plans even if they have some sort of medical insurance.
So when the City thinks about adding a tax, or fee, or fine, they should keep in mind, some folks in GT don't have that extra 20.00 this month. There are homeless and near homeless in Grand Terrace. Grand Terrace needs to think about More Jobs or a increase in Real Income, not just more places to spend the same money we currently generate.
Third: Wallgreens and a business to be named in the future, a development brought to GT by Dr Hu. Dr Hu has a plan. He did not use or abuse the Redevelopment Agency's power in the use and development of his property. He has not asked for waivers of taxes. He has paid all the fees required. His project moves forward, without public financed bonds, and tax deferrals funding it.
Dr Hu demonstrates an example of proper or natural slow but sure economic development oh dare it be said... capitalism with out government involvement, and the use of property rights of individuals. Go forth and prosper Dr. Hu. Good luck in doing what your doing Dr. Hu.
Fourth: The Concert featured at Colton's Flemming park is an example of some of the wonderful live fine arts available in our area. Redlands Bowl, Roosevelt Bowl (Perris Hill Park), Flemming Park, University of San Bernardino, Court St Concerts, are just a few free or near free family / community building arts experiences nearly all of us can afford. Car pool, take a bunch of your kids friends, be a neighborhood hero. It is a small investment in gas, and a grand shared experience. Take your own dinner or snacks. If you have a buck or two, pitch it into the offering bucket. Everyone can be a supporter and or consumer of these local arts productions. When you attend any of these events, you will take away not only an arts experience but a community experience.
Fifth: School has started: It is HOT. Keep SAFE. Our hottest part of the year is end of August, first weeks of September. Watch out for the added pedestrian traffic, and the mommy traffic around schools. Be PATIENT with drivers and pedestrians.
Sixth: Have extra water in your car. If you see someone who looks parched, offer them a cup or bottle of water, you may be saving a life. Watch for children and pets left in cars during the day. Keep extra water in your car in the event your car breaks down and you yourself get stranded.
PS: I have gone North for the Summer so I only know what I read, and recall of AUG/SEP in GT. Canada in Summer is great!!!
Grand Terrace city clerk resigns
GRAND TERRACE - Brenda Mesa is resigning as city clerk, saying she took a part-time position with the city of Upland so she can work closer to home.
"My son is getting ready to start school," said Mesa, 45, an Upland resident. "He's starting kindergarten, and I want to be close to his school."
Mesa submitted her resignation Monday, and her last day will be Aug. 11. She has been the clerk since 1992.
Her resignation comes a month after the City Council laid off Assistant City Clerk Tracey Martinez to help balance its budget and follows recent departures by other longtime employees.
"We went a lot of years without turnover, and I think it's just (coincidence)," Mesa said. "My decision has everything to do with my family and nothing to do with the city."
Martinez will return to fill the city clerk position until a permanent replacement is found, said Community and Economic Development Director Joyce Powers, who is in charge of city operations this week while City Manager Betsy Adams is on vacation.
In Grand Terrace, the city manager hires the clerk without City Council action, Powers said.
"We've really valued her as a friend and an employee, and we're sad to see her go," Powers said. "We wish her the best of luck."
Mesa said she began working in Grand Terrace nearly 25 years ago, as a part-time receptionist, and has only worked for the city or "doing the typical jobs young people do."
She said she's confident the city will do well without her, although she described leaving as bittersweet.
"There's been a lot of years I spent there," she said. "It's been a great experience. I love Grand Terrace."