Editorial: Kudos to the valleys
by PB Editorial Board
Apr 22, 2010 | 4856 views | 2 2 comments | 19 19 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A number of recent news items have reminded us why we’re glad to live in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Here are three that stood out:

To the information-sharers

Kudos to the San Lorenzo Valley School District in the wake of a body found last week on the Boulder Creek Elementary School campus.

By many accounts, the district swiftly spread information through its various e-mail and phone trees very quickly, turning a tragic situation into a learning experience that opened dialogue between parents, their children and the school.

The district should be commended for its quick, on-the-ball response to eliminate rumors by doing its best to inform parents, students and community members that the case was no more than a tragic accident.

To the givers

Kudos, too, to the anonymous donor who will match, up to $25,000, all donations to the capital campaign by the Scotts Valley chapter of Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries. It’s donations like this — and like the $20,000 anonymous donation to San Lorenzo Elementary last fall that allowed music and science lessons for students at that school — that show how closely knit our community is. It’s also heartening to see that those with extra resources are taking matters into their own hands, even when contributions from the state continue to shrink.

Now is a trying time for the Santa Cruz public library system in the San Lorenzo Valley. Library directors are looking at sharply scaling back operations in the San Lorenzo Valley by closing the Felton and Boulder Creek branches to save cash. If that happens, Scotts Valley’s new library on Kings Village Road will have to serve as the nearest public library branch for valley residents.

It’s hard to say whether lobbying will help at this point, because the budget outlook is so dreary for the library system, but now is the time to make our voices heard. If the libraries do close, they may look for volunteers to staff the branches in a limited fashion.

Visitation numbers seem to show that libraries are still relevant in the age of iPods, Kindles and iPads. But the library of the future may be drastically different than the building full of books we have long known.

To the listeners

Finally, kudos to the Santa Cruz County Parks Department for modifying the Ben Lomond Park plan to include future access to the river. The department won $402,000 through Proposition 40 to rebuild part of the park, and it has applied for another $1.2 million grant through Proposition 84 to add several more elements, including steps down to the San Lorenzo River.

The parks department is now looking into the costs associated with building a dam and an accompanying fish ladder. The dream of having a swimming hole in Ben Lomond once again yet lives.

The parks department deserves recognition for hearing what Ben Lomond residents had to say at more than eight community meetings and incorporating the ideas into a sparkling plan that has the potential to draw visitors (and business) to downtown Ben Lomond.

Comments
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S.O.L.
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May 07, 2010
Kudo's to the concerned citizens who have organized and joined the Boulder Creek Save Our Library (S.O.L.) movement...!

Please join us: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/scsaveourlibrary
Fiona Felton
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April 23, 2010
Nice editorial PB! Good job.


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