Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Cheers and Jeers: Losing city manager would be costly

From page A10 | January 31, 2014 |

We offer our cheers and jeers for local newsmakers as we look back over the previous week:

JEERS to the prospect that City Manager Steve Pinkerton will be leaving his position here to become general manager of the Incline Village General Improvement District. The district board selected Pinkerton this week to enter into negotiations for the position overseeing water, sewer, waste and recreational services for the northeast shore of Lake Tahoe in Nevada.

Pinkerton said he had not been searching for a job when the opportunity came his way, but surely in the back of his mind was the always-tenuous relationship between city managers and their bosses — elected city council members. Pinkerton was not without his critics, especially union leaders who blamed him for the tough position Davis took on contract concessions. But he demonstrated time and again a willingness to dig in and guide this city through some difficult issues.

In his two-plus years in Davis, he has overseen a slew of major initiatives and changes to city policy. Notable were contract negotiations with public sector unions that in two cases saw the imposition of agreements by City Council, the successful approval by Davis voters of the $228 million Woodland-Davis surface water project, the approval of The Cannery residential development in North Davis, a planned $100 million sewage treatment plan upgrade, an agreement to share fire service management with UC Davis and plans to tackle the large and costly backlog of road and bike path pavement maintenance.

If he leaves, it will be Davis’ loss.

CHEERS to Davis High School Principal Will Brown for traveling two hours to Lake Tahoe to watch his Blue Devils compete in a ski race. Ski coach Bob Brewer told The Enterprise that in his 12 years of coaching, Brown is the first principal to attend one of the team’s events.

Brown is a welcome presence at scores of DHS events, with parents and students alike delighted by his interest and participation. Said Brown, “I come to see our kids in everything they do. It’s like being a parent with 1,800 kids.”

CHEERS to KDVS, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary on Saturday. The student-run, free-form radio station began broadcasting on Feb. 1, 1964, in a dormitory laundry room. It now can be heard throughout the region on 90.3 FM and features as eclectic a lineup of music to be heard anywhere.

KDVS aired the first reggae show in the area, as well as the first punk music show. Tune in now and you’ll hear gospel, folk, electronic, jazz, blues, funk and indie tunes, all spun by volunteer disc jockeys from the campus and the community. Former DJs even include astronaut Steve Robinson, now an engineering professor at UCD.

JEERS to the woman who posted a bogus comment on our website announcing the establishment of a foundation in memory of Cameron Morrison, the 20-month-old Davis boy who died last weekend at a Sacramento hospital, the suspected victim of ongoing abuse.

As if the family isn’t suffering enough, scam artists are trying to take advantage of this tragic situation. Have they no shame? If and when a legitimate fund is set up to honor Cameron, we will let Enterprise readers know.

And finally, CHEERS to Mother Nature for the 0.11 inches of rainfall she dropped on Davis on Wednesday. The sight, smell and sound of rain was indeed welcome. Let’s hope and pray for more.



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