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August 2012

Pacifica Police Alert About Fake Utility Workers at Your Door

A common criminal activity is for thieves, posing as utility workers, to gain entrance to homes by feigning a problem with a utility. They tell the homeowners they need access to the home to "check the problem." Once inside, the thieves ask the resident to help them by performing a task in another part of the home. While the homeowner is distracted, the “utility worker” or an “accomplice” steals cash and/or jewelry from the home.

Be Safe and Please Follow These Simple Crime Prevention Tips:

NEVER let any strangers into your home. If a stranger comes to your door, talk to him or her from behind a closed and locked door. A peep hole in the door provides the resident an opportunity to see who is outside prior to engaging in conversation with a stranger.

ALWAYS ask for identification from utility workers who need to enter your home. If you are not aware of a problem, or you are not comfortable with the identification the worker has presented, have him or her wait outside your home, and contact PG&E at 1- 800-743-5000 or AT&T at 1-800-288-2020 to confirm the worker should be at your home. If you are unsure about any aspect of this visit, do not allow the worker access to your home! Contact Pacifica Police Department immediately at 650-738-7314 or 9-1-1!

Please help us keep Pacifica safe. When in doubt, err on the side of caution and call the Pacifica Police.

James Tasa, Chief of Police

By: Captain F. Realyvasquez/Pete Olinger, Crime Prevention Unit

"Get Healthy" Gets Makeover

San Mateo County Get Healthy Collaborative is working to inform organizations and community leaders about ways our communities can “Get Healthy.” As a result of Get Healthy’s efforts over the past eight years, San Mateo County’s obesity rates declined this past year by 5.6 percent, making it one of only three Bay Area counties where obesity rates decreased.

Get Healthy’s redesigned website, www.gethealthysmc.org, provides a one-stop shop where people can share information, discover creative ways to stay active, and become informed on upcoming events, workshops, and available funding to support local programs.

Starting as a task force to prevent childhood obesity, Get Healthy has grown into a successful collaboration of cities, community leaders, and organizations across the county. Because wellness begins where people live, learn, work, and play, Get Healthy works to develop strategies that can reduce and prevent obesity-related health conditions associated with unhealthy eating and physical inactivity. Get Healthy places a special focus on the areas in the county with the fewest opportunities and options for physical activity and healthy food.

The Get Healthy website is all about what is happening locally, such as bike lanes, organizations with wellness policies, reducing sugary drink consumption, and Safe Routes to School. Get Healthy is also launching its new Facebook Page, www.facebook.com/gethealthysmc. Visit www.gethealthysmc.org and click “join us” to be added to the mailing list.

Yee Blasts GOP Platform: Wrong, Offensive, Backward, Regressive

Pacifica's State Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) issued a statement in response to the Republican Party platform approved this week at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida:
 
“The Republican Party has adopted a platform that is not only counter to American prosperity, but is counter to the ideals of our nation. They are wrong on issues of tax fairness, marriage equality, voter suppression, gun control, abortion rights, the environment, immigration, health care, and education. It is offensive to allow the rich to get richer while the poor get poorer; to deny individuals the right to marry; to prevent women from having control of their own bodies; to enact laws to suppress the votes of young people and the disadvantaged; to oppose the assault weapon ban; to degrade our environment by drilling off our coast and in the Arctic Wildlife Refuge; to preclude schools from offering family planning education, and to refuse a reasonable path to citizenship. I look forward to next week when the Democratic Party will adopt a platform that helps uplift our society and respects our diversity, as opposed to one that is backward and regressive.”

Child Car Safety: Assemblyman Jerry Hill's Bill Saves Lives

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Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, predicts that the child car safety bill he introduced and Gov. Jerry Brown signed August 27 will save lives. Hill has hosted several child car seat safety check events in his district and observed firsthand that an alarming number of seats are not installed properly.


“Ninety percent of parents and caregivers believe they have installed child safety seats correctly when, in fact, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) research show that seven out of 10 children are improperly restrained, putting them at risk for serious injury or death when they are in an car crash,” Hill said. “This bill will save lives.”

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death of children 3 to 14 years of age.  Many of these deaths can be prevented through the proper use of child safety seats. According to the NHTSA, child safety seats can reduce fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and by 54 percent for toddlers, 1 to 4 years of age.

Current law requires every public or private hospital, clinic, or birthing center, at the time of the discharge of a child, to provide and discuss information on the current law requiring child passenger restraint systems to the parents or the person to whom the child is released.

AB 1452, which takes effect Jan. 1, adds a requirement that parents be notified about where, and at no cost, the child passenger restraint system can be inspected and proper installation instruction can be given.

Hill introduced similar legislation (AB 2667) that was approved in 2010 by the Legislature, but vetoed by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who maintained parents should take responsibility for the installation and use of child safety seats.

Certain fire stations and California Highway Patrol offices are among the agencies that provide free car safety inspections.  To find the closest agency that conduct  car seat safety checks visit: http://www.safekids.org/, then click “In Your Area.”

Public Library Expands e-Book Collection for Free Downloads

San Mateo County Library (SMCL), which includes Pacifica's two public libraries (Sharp Park and Sanchez), has added a new digital platform for e-books and more than 1,500 titles to its collection. Axis360 is a new digital media service that offers interactive e-books enhanced by color, video, and audio. Library users can access a growing collection of bestsellers, new releases, and classic titles, as well as heavily illustrated e-books such as children’s storybooks, cookbooks, and craft books.
 
Readers with a San Mateo County Library card can take advantage of the new e-book service 24/7 when they visit the library’s website from a computer or mobile device. The cloud-based delivery system greatly simplifies the process of downloading what patrons want to read onto the devices they prefer to use, including Apple, Android, and Windows tablets and smartphones. At the end of the lending period, titles automatically expire and are returned to the digital collection – eliminating late fees. Axis360 is the most accessible e-book platform available, allowing limited-sight patrons guided reading as well as text-to-voice options for all titles. To check out and download e-books and more, visit www.smcl.org/axis360.

Tom's Tales: Armchair Travel Around the Wilds of California

This is the ultimate in armchair travel around the wilds of California. San Francisco Chronicle outdoors columnist Tom Stienstra always spins good yarns about hunting, fishing, wildlife, hiking, camping, nature, and environment. Here are a few highlights gleaned from his August 26 column: Two men in Mammoth Lakes put a wild bear into a trance on their front by playing didgeridoos on the deck of their home. At a Mono County garbage dump, a hungry bear snatched a full trash bag out of a man's hand. In Yosemite, a record 17 bears have been hit by drivers, most of whom were speeding or driving distracted (rangers say they are cracking down on such law violators). Senate Bill 1221 to ban the use of dogs for hunting bears and bobcats is winding its way through the Sacramento legislative maze on its way to the governor's desk for signing. Military veterans who are honorably discharged and have a service-oriented disability of 50 percent or more can get a state fishing license for $7.05. In 2012, bald eagles have been sighted at Napa-Sonoma Marsh Wildlife Area and Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge (Editor's Note: and as previously reported  at Crystal Springs watershed and Chabot Lake wilderness area). A new handheld device called SunMate ($10) measures ultraviolet (UV) levels and sunburn risk. A great white shark reportedly took a bite out of a kayak angler's watercraft in Monterey Bay off Capitola.


Designs on the Coast: Caltrans Dream of Paving Paradise

2A MAP-Adopted Alignment w-Martini Ck. copy
This is the 1958 "Adopted Alignment" that Caltrans advanced to connect Pacifica
with Half Moon Bay, and intended to connect with the then-existing SR1 freeway in Pacifica. That it began at the Pacifica city limits placed it almost entirely inside the unincorporated area of the coast (not that it mattered). I have another map that depicts the Martini Creek Alignment; it's just a shortened version of the Adopted Alignment. By the way, Judge Sweigart told Caltrans to forget the Adopted Alignment after it was sued in 1971. There are a lot of "wrinkles" to the ongoing attempts by the political power structure to build out the San Mateo County coast, i.e., urbanize it. The oversimplifications advanced by some of the recent commenters on Riptide don't change the facts.

Bob Pilgrim


Maritime National Historical Park

Glass

Maritime National Historical Park is on the San Francisco waterfront. Board historic vessels berthed at Hyde Street Pier and participate in interpretive programs: traditional shipbuilding methods, ship restoration and maintenance by shipwrights, rigging crew, small-craft curators and volunteers, and exhibits aboard Balclutha and in the Visitor Center. Complete schedule:

National Park Service

Visitor Center: 415-447-5000

MARITIME NATIONAL HISTORICAL PARK

FRIENDS OF S.F. MARITIME LIBRARY

 


"Legitimate Rape"

By Nat Fudge of the The Fudge Report

Several years ago, when The Extreme Right to Life (ERL) made its debut with the slogan “Every Egg a Person” and announced its intention to pass a constitutional amendment banning menstruation, it was assumed that ERL's ultimate demands would soon be met, but now a U.S. Senate candidate, along with a V.P. candidate, have introduced a brand-new element into the discussion with what they call “legitimate rape.”
 
And now that "legitimate rape" has become a legitimate topic, legislation in the House is being drawn up to protect the parental rights of legitimate rapists who heretofore have been denied the rights conferred on all other fathers.
 
As one congressional staffer put it, “If the LGBT community can have access to children, then the parental rights of the legitimate rapist community should also be recognized.” One of the unnamed authors of the bill added, “Yes, they are felons and, yes, they are sexual predators, and since it is our intention to ban abortions for women who are legitimately raped, then it is incumbent upon us to provide the resulting children with fathers, even if the fathers happen to be in prison or on the run."
 
So far, at least 37 Senators have pen in hand ready to sign onto a Senate version, which differs only slightly from the House version in requiring that “while the father is in prison, the children must visit the fathers at least once a month so that the fathers are able to participate in the joyous experience of the growth and development of their accidental offspring.” No mention has been made of fathers on the run, but legislation in that area is expected soon.
 
White House sources state that the president will seriously consider signing the final bill, provided there is bipartisan support and if representatives of the major religious communities raise no serious objections.


Pacifica Lawyer Not Charged for Smuggling Melatonin to Jail Inmate

Pacifica lawyer Erika Jordening, 43, who was arrested yesterday for allegedly smuggling drugs to inmate Aaron Rauls at San Mateo County Jail in Redwood City during a confidential attorney-client meeting, has not been charged because the contraband substance was tested by a county lab and found to be melatonin, an herbal sleep aid, according to the Sheriff's Office. Jordening was jailed in lieu of $35,000 bail, and still faces trial on a petty theft charge (as reported in the San Francisco Chronicle, August 23 & 24).