We offer our cheers and jeers for local newsmakers as we look back over the previous week:
CHEERS to the number of Davis residents who are interested enough in our local schools to want to run for election to the Board of Education in November. An unprecedented four seats will be open, giving local voters an opportunity to support new faces and, possibly, new directions.
We thank incumbents Sheila Allen, Gina Daleiden and Tim Taylor for their service over these past nine years; the remaining seat up for grabs is that won by Nancy Peterson in 2012. She resigned following the Davis High School volleyball coaching brouhaha and Alan Fernandes was appointed to the seat. Fernandes has announced that he intends to run for the remaining two years of Peterson’s term.
Six other candidates who applied for the appointment — Tom Adams, Barbara Archer, Jose Granda, Robert Poppenga, Chuck Rairdan and Madhavi Sunder — also have indicated they will run (Archer has already filed) and a seventh potential candidate — Mike Nolan, who ran in 2010 — is considering another run.
We look forward to a lively campaign that explores all that’s right with our stellar school system, along with all that can be further improved.
CHEERS to the Benicia Planning Commission for extending the public comment period on the Valero oil refinery expansion EIR through Sept. 15. The proposed expansion would lead to an estimated 70,000 barrels of crude oil traveling by rail through Yolo County every day.
The EIR focused primarily on the impacts the project would have on the city of Benicia, while giving short shrift to impacts in up-rail communities like Davis. The city of Davis and the Sacramento Area Council of Governments continue to review the document, and the Yolo County Board of Supervisors sent a highly critical letter this week.
CHEERS to a creative solution for what to do with about 80,000 cubic yards of soil that is being excavated in Woodland at the site of the new surface water treatment plant. Developers of The Cannery residential project in Davis need dirt to fill in a wide swath of land on the northern edge of the property that once held runoff from the tomato cannery. Problem solved.
However, we worry about the impact that 10,000 trips by the big rigs hauling the dirt will have on County Road 102 (Pole Line Road) and Covell Boulevard. Stay tuned.
JEERS to the news that some Californians — primarily in south state coastal communities and the far northeastern corner of the state — are actually using MORE water during this severe drought.
No region of California met Gov. Jerry Brown’s request for 20 percent water conservation, but residents of the Sacramento Valley came closer than others. Newly imposed fines of up to $500 a day will target people who waste water on landscaping, fountains, washing vehicles and other outdoor uses.