Norcal Solar went out of business last year. They recommend Brian at Owens Electric & Solar in San Mateo. You can also email Tim Swillinger at email@example.com in El Granada. Also try the alternative-energy company REAL GOODS SOLAR or call 1-888-507-2561 for 0% financing and a free site visit/estimate. (Thanks to Steve Patton for the research.)
Leal Charonnat reports from Oakland that he can't find gas under $4 a gallon anywhere in the East Bay. He is saving a receipt for gas he bought a few weeks ago for $3.99 a gallon so that someday in the future he can prove that gas used to be "cheaper." What a joke!
Do you enjoy California’s outdoors but when questions come up about the fish or wildlife you see, there’s no one to ask? Need help in deciphering those sometimes complicated hunting and fishing regulations? Want tips on where to go to find some of California’s best hunting, fishing and outdoor adventures on public lands? If so, answers are on the way, as the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) is launching a new weekly “California Outdoors Q&A” column to answer all of those questions and more.
The column, to be made available weekly by DFG and designed to go into any publication, Web site, etc., will address questions from the public dealing with topical issues or regulations and it will provide facts about the state’s fish and wildlife species. The column will also inform the public on where to go to hunt and fish and will help readers to enjoy all of the unique outdoor opportunities that California has to offer. Many readers will be surprised to learn some of the facts offered of California’s diverse fish and wildlife and of the tremendous hunting, fishing and wildlife watching opportunities available throughout the state, and close to home.
Carrie Wilson, a 20-year veteran with DFG and an avid outdoor enthusiast, angler and hunter, will each week offer tips, news and answers to questions from readers. She is a marine biologist with an ample background of professional experience working in both fisheries and wildlife management. An established award-winning outdoor writer, Carrie enjoys tackling the tough questions from the public and will be regularly tapping into the expertise of the DFG’s game wardens and many fisheries, wildlife and marine biologists to best cover all the topics.
The column debuted on May 29. A new column will be released every Thursday as a news release and eventually an RSS feed. A special Web page will be set up, which will include all archived columns, a downloadable picture of Carrie, as well as a special link to submit questions and subscribe to the RSS feed.
Contact: Steve Martarano, DFG Office of Communications, 916-322-8639
If you love to vote (and who doesn’t), you are in luck, because this year, we get to vote—twice! That’s because California, in a desperate plea for relevance, moved its presidential primary up to February, just in time for the contest to be decided in June.
That’s better than Florida and Michigan, which moved their primaries to the Middle Ages, which unfortunately for them was before the invention of democracy. (In the case of Florida, this was still an improvement.)
But our legislators decided to have the local primaries in June, because they spent so much time moving up the other primary that they didn’t have time to prepare their reelection campaigns. Plus they took the old adage “vote early and often” way too literally.
I recently got my sample ballot in the mail and after several minutes of intense study am now prepared to share my learned observations. (Due to space limitations, I won’t be discussing the minor party candidates, such as Libertarian, Write-in, or Republican.)
My first observation: I can get paid as a poll worker! I meet all of the qualifications listed: I’m a registered voter and/or high school student. (Jealous yet, all you unregistered high school dropouts?) It doesn’t say how much I would get paid, but I understand government jobs are quite lucrative, and you can’t beat the hours.
On to the propositions. Hmm, must be some pages missing, there’s nothing on Propositions 1 through 97, you’d better just vote no on all of them to be safe.
Propositions 98 and 99 are almost identical, which is weird because they can’t stand each other. (Like the Swedes and Norwegians.) They both would outlaw eminent domain, a term that derives from the Latin term for “extreme lordship,” which is even worse than your garden variety of lordship. The only difference is that Prop. 98 also would outlaw rent control, which is bad unless you are a landlord who would like to raise the rent on the tenants upstairs who throw loud parties and have way more fun than you.
There are two measures on the ballot, Measure N and Measure O. (As far as I can tell, the difference between an initiative and a measure is that an initiative has a number and is statewide, whereas a measure has a letter and is local.)
Measure N would raise property taxes by $96 a year to help fund Pacifica’s schools. Like most renters, I am totally in favor of this measure (unless my landlord raises my rent by $96).
Measure O would fund county parks by increasing the sales tax from 8.25% to 8.375%. This is confusing because the smallest unit of money is one cent, but if I went to the dollar store and bought one item, I would owe one dollar and 8.375 cents. I’m not even sure how to divide a penny into .375 cents. They should tax us at rates that are easier to calculate, such as 100% or π. Nevertheless, I, like most people, support this measure, which is sure to fail because it needs a 2/3 majority to pass.
The hottest race is for state Assembly, even though it is considered the lowest house of state government. We have three strong candidates, all capable of bench-pressing the federal tax code.
Jerry Hill is the most qualified. He sits on more boards than a third-string catcher but loses points for refusing public financing spending limits. (On the state Senate side, Joe Simitian did the same even though he is running unopposed.)
Gina Papan is a fine candidate. She gets bonus points for her work on Millbrae’s Styrofoam ban, but her dad Lou was an Assemblyman for many years, and some think term limits should apply to the entire family.
That leaves Richard Holober, one of the greatest human beings ever to grace the earth, according to the full-color flier I found on my porch. (It appears the author may have been on ecstasy.)
Running for the House of Representatives is Jackie Speier and some others who don’t have a chance in hell. ‘Nuff said.
Three judges are up for Superior Court: Jerry Nastari, Don Franchi, and someone named Write In. All are equally qualified.
And finally, Pacifica’s own Barbara Arietta is running for the Democratic County Committee. There are five open seats, which helps her odds. I’ve written her a campaign cheer, which she can use at no charge:
"Arietta, she is great, fifth or better in a field of eight!"
So get out to the polls on June 3 and vote for the home team. I hope I’ll be there with my cushy new government job, handing out “I Voted” stickers and macaroons. I’ll try to save you one.