Soon, Tracy citizens will be asked to vote on the Measure B bond to improve facilities in Tracy Unified School District. As a staff member, I was presented with information about all the improvements made with the last two bonds, documenting that the district had accomplished what it set out to do. What wasn’t in the presentation at our staff meeting was the information that I and other Central teachers had been given about Measure S; Central school is first on the list for repairs and modernization.
Seven years ago, armed with promises, my colleagues and I set to the streets speaking with people asking for support. We made promises on behalf of TUSD as a whole. “Please pass the bond so our toilets don’t overflow when it rains, our heaters don’t catch on fire and the wiring and fuse boxes don’t overheat.” It passed, but the economy took a dive and immediately there would be things cut from the bond wish list. Central was taken off the list altogether, even though I had promised citizens while standing on their front porches, the money would help the students at my school.
Now the board is asking for another bond. I agree it might be the only way Central will get the promised modernization, but I will not be making any promises on their behalf. I don’t know that the school board members even know what the facilities are like at Central. At the Nov. 12 board meeting, Trustee James Vaughn said he is proud of how the facilities look. If they look fine, why is he asking for a bond? At the same board meeting, Trustee Gregg Crandall asked why, if TUSD is that bad a place, are the employees still here?
We are here for the kids! I don’t know any other place where the employees are asked to help fundraise to keep heaters from falling from ceilings after board members implied just a few months ago that we, teachers, ask for too much and if we don’t like it, we should leave. But before we go, can we please help them raise taxes to fix something that never should have been neglected.
Frustrated and concerned,
Kimberly Jacobs, Tracy
Youth amenities needed
My letter is regarding the lack of resources that the youth of the city Of Tracy have to enjoy. Such as sporting events, swimming or other recreational events. Whatever resources that the city does have are stretched to the limit. The city has not in my opinion made a priority of what kids need. I have been a resident of Tracy for 45 years. When we moved here, the swimming center on Holly Avenue was being used and there were ball parks for them to play on. Today there is not much more, and it’s 2014. The city closed the pool at Dr. Powers Park, baseball fields were promised years ago and so far all we have is a parking lot. To me, it’s sad to see other cities with wonderful amenities for their community and we are so far behind. And before anyone says, “Why don’t we move to one of those other towns?” — it’s because I put faith in my city leaders to keep the promises that they made. Instead of progress for the youth of this city, we have slipped backward. Oh, we have a beautiful City Hall and a wonderful Civic Center. A lot of money and thought there. Not much for anything else. Maybe our city representatives don’t have children or grandchildren who need a nice place to swim or play ball. I still can’t understand why we spent taxpayers’ money on a swimming pool only to close it up. My kids swam there and many kids enjoyed cooling off there. Instead, the city put in a few sprinklers in Lincoln Park as a small gesture for all the kids in Tracy to use when it’s over a hundred degrees out. My point: Get off your you-know-whats and let’s get with program! I would like to see something done positive for the young people of this town before I’m gone and buried.
Robert Silva Sr., Tracy
Prosecutor supports Verber-Salazar for DA
I am a longtime criminal prosecutor who lives in Tracy. I believe public safety is a battle that is fought each and every day by law enforcement, on our streets by the police officers and in court by the district attorneys. Therefore it is essential to have competent and ethical leaders in both branches of law enforcement. Since the early ’80s, this county has not had a contested election for the chief prosecutorial office of the county — until now. I endorse Tori Verber-Salazar for the position for the below said reasons. Ms. Verber-Salazar is a veteran gang/homicide prosecutor who has been working to keep our streets safe and prosecuting the most violent offenders. She has successfully prosecuted some of the most notorious gangsters and brought justice to victims and their families. She was the trial prosecutor in the Amore’s restaurant shooting, which resulted in multiple life sentences to the shooter. Ms. Verber-Salazar is a respected prosecutor who has worked to create programs designed to deter young people from criminal activity. Each year, she speaks to over 5,000 students in an attempt to turn youth away from gangs. Ms. Verber-Salazar is endorsed by Tracy Police Officer Association, Deputy Sheriff’s Association and all of the San Joaquin County law enforcement. She is also endorsed by the entire board of supervisors, as well as many unions. This speaks volumes for her credibility and the respect she has earned through hard work and dedication to the community. Tori Verber-Salazar is the clear choice to be the district attorney of San Joaquin County.
Ron Indran, Tracy
Fun, safe Memorial Day weekend
For many, Memorial Day is a holiday to kick off summer activities with family and friends: barbecues, water sports, and other outdoor activities. These celebrations, often with alcohol, raise fear in drunken driving victims like myself.
In April 1992, a drunken driver hit me head-on when I was 16. My life changed. The collision left me in a coma, paralyzed, with several broken and dislocated bones. I spent seven months in two hospitals and then therapy followed for 17 months. Not exactly what a life asks for.
With my personal strength and therapy, I can walk now. Unfortunately, my hearing capability is damaged and my speech is not as clear as I want it to be.
These injuries should never happen to anyone. As a partner with the CHP, we plan to keep drunken drivers off the road. Accomplishing this starts with you.
I suggest that any gathering, small or large, do the following:
• Before drinking begins, choose a designated driver. This person will avoid drinking alcoholic beverages.
• Also serve nonalcoholic drinks and plenty of food.
• Limit drinks to guests.
If you ever spot a driver weaving or crossing center lines on the road, I urge you to call 911 to report this possibly intoxicated driver. It could save a life.
I thank all veterans and designated drivers. They save our lives.
Lori Martin, Tracy
Kimball freshman learns real lessons
Kimball High School hasn’t seen as eventful a year as this past one, nor have I. I’m a freshman (I know, ugh, right?) and I have learned more about myself than I ever have before. I wish I could hold every incoming freshman’s hand and say, “Not at all, it’s going to be easy. Your friends will stay your friends, classes are easy, you’ll never be disappointed and everything will stay the same.” But I can’t say that, because it won’t. You’ll change. They’ll change. Things are going to change, and you are going to have to learn to deal with it. As the year comes to a routinely anticipated end, and I’m studying intensely for finals, it occurs to me that although the content is valuable, the truest gems of the year are found in the adjustments I’ve made socially. I’ve learned to speak with patience, walk with integrity, and act with great grace (even to my brothers, but they’d disagree with me). The hardest part? Letting go of things that I want to bury myself under the blanket of, be it guilt or anger or grudges. The greatest part? There’s so much more to learn. I’ve made friends, lost friends, eaten alone, been called out, gotten a referral, won an award, fallen apart and gotten put back together; but this isn’t about that. This is about who we are and who we grow to be, in a community that surrounds us with an environment that we may love or despise. All we can do is thank you.
Emily Forschen, Tracy