Our Views: Comments from the editorial staff
Editor's note: "Tell us about one of the issues near the top of your mind." That was the assignment to Appeal-Democrat editorial board staff members. "And tell us in 100 words or less." (We'd love to hear your priorities. Send us a letter or comment online.) Here's our collection:
Stray grocery carts
While overgrown yards, cracked sidewalks and pesky weeds might be forgivable, stray grocery carts are another matter.
Ditched on the side of Yuba-Sutter roads and piling up near apartment complexes, the metal and plastic eyesores are lazy blights on property. The one or two left at bus stops leave a bad impression on our transit system. People and businesses looking to move into the area notice things like this, even if it seems a small issue.
Bottom line: If you're going to take a shopping cart off a retailer's property, have a plan for returning it in a timely matter.
— Andrew Cummins, copy editor
Opportunities for cooperation
I can't fault any of the sources, because we're not specifically asking them the question, but I'm not hearing anyone in our "State of Things" series talking about cooperation and consolidation with other agencies.
I know from visiting with some officials that there is some cooperation happening; hearing from other folks that they think there could be more.
It's something that local governments everywhere should always be considering and have on the high priority list. How can cities and counties share and economize together? How can duplicate departments from both sides of the river help each other, share, merge? What resources can districts cooperate on?
— Steve Miller, editor
There are only three of us still in the newsroom who remember Dorothy Dodge, who died Feb. 4. She was an Appeal-Democrat newsroom fixture for 30 years, and was city editor when she left in 1986. She later joined the Monterey Herald, where she worked until her 1997 retirement.
My boss for six years, Dorothy ruled the newsroom with an old-school mentality. She was no-nonsense when it came to the news business.
I hadn't seen Dorothy since the day she left the A-D office for the last time. But nobody who ever worked for or with her will ever forget her.
— Eric Vodden, current city editor
Ban plastic bags
Urban tumbleweeds mar the greenbelts of Yuba-Sutter.
Marysville and Yuba City should consider banning single-use plastic bags with the environment in mind, such as protecting local bird habitats. Environmental reports indicate plastic bags can strangle birds, and that birds accidentally eat plastic waste mistaken for food. With Yuba and Sutter counties as part of the Pacific Flyway, we should be good hosts to our migratory avian visitors.
Chico recently voted to draft an ordinance prohibiting single-use plastic bags, and in Sacramento, two City Council members are pursuing a plastic bag ordinance. Perhaps pressure to ban bags here will trickle in from both north and south.
— Laura van der Meer, Internet editor
Consult with disabled
A wag once said, "getting old isn't for sissies." The same can be said for those who are handicapped.
Try getting out of a "handicapped accessible" restroom in a public building by yourself while piloting a mobility device with only one good hand; or getting on or off a mobility device in a handicap parking area that is on a slope.
The Americans with Disabilities Act, intended to help those with disabilities stay connected to the mainstream of society, necessarily paints with a broad stroke. The term "disabled" covers a plethora of problems ranging from physical and visual to aural and mental.
But when a public facility is built or remodeled, a bit of consultation with a variety of handicapped users certainly wouldn't hurt. It is frustrating when the word of the law is met but the spirit can't get through the door.
— Larry Badger, design editor