letters to the editor

SVFD’s bond measure raises questions

As a Scotts Valley homeowner, I’m interested in the upcoming Scotts Valley Fire District bond measure to build the La Madrona fire station and the merger with the Branciforte Fire District that the Press Banner has been reporting on.

I have no doubt the fire station on Erba Lane needs to be replaced, but the recent revelation of adding Branciforte’s district to Scotts Valley’s responsibilities makes me wonder what the long-term costs will be for Scotts Valley homeowners and what the fire district’s plan is. 

Will there be more major capital expenses from the Branciforte facilities that require another bond measure? Will Branciforte voters be able to vote on the upcoming Scotts Valley bond measure? Is Scotts Valley FD assuming any significant debt (pensions, otherwise) from Branciforte that could impact the district’s long-term viability? Or is it the opposite? 

Maybe having more customers and voters actually improves fire service and reduces the burden on voters across the whole district. I don’t know the answers to these questions yet, but I’d like to find out before I cast a vote on this bond measure. 

Peter Burke
Scotts Valley

Walk to spread awareness for suicide prevention

As part of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Santa Cruz County inaugural Out of the Darkness Walk, I will be walking on Sept. 30 at Skypark in Scotts Valley to draw attention to the importance of suicide prevention.

I won’t be walking alone. I will be joined by many who share my dedication. Last year, over 570 Out of the Darkness Walks took place in communities and on campuses across the United States, attended by a quarter of a million dedicated people who share my passion. Our movement is growing.

Like many, I walk because suicide has affected me very personally. I lost my oldest son Trevor Theissen last May 2022. He was beautiful and talented. He was a member of this community, as he graduated from Scotts Valley High School in 2016. We miss him dearly.

In memory of my son Trevor, while working through my sadness, I have dedicated my time to educating others about suicide prevention and mental health.

Our goal is to spread awareness of what is currently the 11th leading cause of death in the U.S., and let others know they are not alone. Please help us ensure that mental health is looked upon in equal importance to physical health, and continue to bring hope to those affected by suicide. Join me in this walk. We need you.

Farah Galvez
Chairperson, Out of the Darkness Walk Santa Cruz County
Scotts Valley

We welcome letters to the editor and commentaries on all topics of local interest. Email your submissions to [email protected]. Letters must include the writer’s name and hometown (for publication) and phone number (for verification). Submissions may be edited, and will be published as space permits. Letters are limited to 400 words, commentaries to 600 words.

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