Disturbing News From The…..

April 27, 2013

….GENE POOL

My son Tim, stopped by the house last evening, permitting me to enjoy my grandson Kent in person, rather than on Skype. He was driving a new car, probably as a reward for his current Disney project, a sequel to the Three Men and a Baby comedy, getting much closer to actual filming. Reportedly, all three male stars have signed on to the project.

It’s always good to have good reports from your children of their latest successes.

Unfortunately, one of the darker sides of success in Hollywood is having the time and money to explore your personal gene pool, something I’ve never thought important beyond the typical family interest in one’s predecessors. In my case, having each one of my grandparents be happy and legal immigrants from Norway during the years 1880-1905 , I was always comfortable with my genetic consistency. 

No personal “Heinz 57” issues to deal with.

Until now.

According to Tim, after providing the appropriate blood sample for testing, his genetic bloodlines  are identifiable as 100% European, perhaps a slight step down from being 100%  Norwegian. Since his mother was generally French and German in in origin, a 100% European identification remains within the bounds of expectation.

However, Tim was further advised that 3% of his bloodline (which puts him in the 99th percentile of Homo sapiens) comes from the Neanderthal line.

 For more information, please click on the following:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neanderthal

Sometimes, it’s not good to ask questions.

Comments can be made to  zakturango@excite.com.

I have to admit I always worried that his mother’s eyebrows were a little prominent.

Advertisements

When Editors Fail Their Readers, Corruption Spreads Like…

April 24, 2013

A LOVELY RASPBERRY JAM

The following editorial appeared in the print edition of The Californian on April 15, 2013 in their “Roses & Raspberries” column (with my commentary interspersed in blue) , as follows:

 “Let the Kids Play in the Street” razz”

 “A raspberry to the Wildomar City Council for delaying a badly needed clean up of city parks until the fall. The United Methodist Church was all ready to deploy nearly 500 volunteers to spruce up three deteriorating parks on June 1.

For the record, as of April 13, 2013, the number of volunteers was “5.”   As of this date, the number of volunteers is still “5.”

Please click on the following link to confirm:

http://www.rethinkchurch.org/impact-event/2013-great-day-service

There were, and are, no “nearly 500 volunteers” ready to deploy.   

 But after City Hall watchdog Gil Rasmussen questioned the propriety— and legality, under the state Brown Act—– of a majority of council members discussing the matter outside a public forum, Wildomar City Attorney Thomas Jex recommended the council play it safe and postpone  the cleanup until the fall.

 The cure is to start the process over again,” Jex said.

 He’s wrong.

City Attorney Jex properly counseled the rogue Wildomar City Council to overturn their own illegal actions and restart the process within the law.  My actual ” Cure and Correct” demand was for letters of recission to  go out,  on City of Wildomar letterhead, to each of the generous sponsors, such as Chick-fil-A and Lowe’s Home Improvement, who had already been hustled for a donation in the name of the City of Wildomar.

The City Attorney was not wrong; He was properly protecting the Wildomar City Council from the embarrassment of further legal action.

 The  cure is to let volunteers clean the park now, in time for summer, when the kids are home from school and will use the park for most— and not wait until fall, when they’re back in the classroom.

Obviously, The editors of the Californian do not understand that the United Methodist Church project  was much more than a “cleanup” of Wildomar’s parks .  It was their intention to remove and replace, through re-seeding, thousands of square feet  of park grass, leaving the parks un-accessible for activities in any event, not to mention the inadvisability of planting new grass just before the grass-killing intense summer heat.

 We’re normally all for or proper policies and procedures, but in this case Rasmussen and Jex have both done the children of Wildomar a tremendous disservice”

 In my opinion, the Editorial Board of the Californian fails to understand the implications of “corruption” in local government.

 The actual “tremendous disservice” is to their readers, and to the citizens of Wildomar, who have come to rely on newspapers, such as the Californian, to expose and criticize the malfeasance of elected officials,  and not perpetuate it.

 Comments can be made to zakturango@excite.com.


We Don’t Need No Stinking….

April 22, 2013

…PERMITS

Over the span of a significant portion of my adult life spent in the ecclesiastical world, I was amazed at the number of ministers and religious leaders that I came across, who were willing to conduct church business in defiance of the common rules and regulations found in municipal Building Codes. There seems to be a sense that the perceived goodness and worthiness of a religious act of charity somehow supersedes any secular civic obligations, to the point where such mundane trifles as the pulling of building permits for a charity project can be ignored by church leadership.

For example, being made evermore curious by the  recent disclosure of civic  subterfuge  by the Parks & Recreation Subcommittee, in cooperation with the United Methodist Church/Great  Day of Service 2013, I found this additional video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NsqRznheWY

Since Rancho Damacitas is located in the County, the charity work depicted in the video on May 17, 2012 should have, at the very least, required the pulling of building permits for the construction of a patio cover, through the Building Department of the County of Riverside.

Click on the following link (and scroll down to “patio”) to confirm:

http://www.rctlma.org/building/content/docs/bs_permit_fees.pdf

 In addition to the permit fees required, ranging from $258.47 for a “residential lattice patio cover” up to $657.06 (If the improvement  were deemed to be a “commercial patio cover”),  the purpose of the building permit, according to the Riverside County Building and Safety , is, as follows: “Building permits provide the means for Code Officials to inspect construction to ensure that minimum standards are met thus reducing the potential hazards of unsafe construction, and therefore, ensuring the public health, safety and welfare.”

After checking the permit records maintained by Riverside County for Rancho Damacitas, located at  38950 Mesa Road , Temecula California , I was unable to confirm the existence of any permits for the construction of a residential lattice patio cover.

Not surprisingly,  neither could I confirm that any subsequent inspections were conducted by the County of Riverside Building Department, in order to ensure  minimum standards  were met for the patio cover.

Based on the above conduct by the promoters and facilitators of the Great Day of Service 2012, it would  be appropriate for the citizens of Wildomar to be vigilant about the proposed “improvements” to be made to the city’s parks during the Great Day of Service 2013, which is somehow now “scheduled” for October 12, 2013.

Comments can be made to zakturango@excite.com.


Those Wacky, And Loveable Methodists Are…..

April 16, 2013

….. AN EAGER BUNCH

My cries of “shame on you” are probably still echoing down the hallways of City Hall, after forcing the Wildomar City Council to suspend their  Brown Act-violating back room deal with local area United Methodist Church (“UMC”) congregations for a Mother Nature-defying Great Day of Service , originally set for June 01, 2013.

Although the determination of the Wildomar City Council, last Wednesday evening, was to return the proposal to the Parks and Recreation Subcommittee to start the process all over, this time to be properly discussed before the public, it appears that, once again, a formal date for the UMC project has been set without the benefit of a public hearing.

 According to the UMC’s “Re-Think Church/Great day of Service 2013” website, Saturday, October 12, 2013 will be the day that the UMC will convene a religious service at Marna O’Brien Park , followed by several hours of volunteer work , and then a “celebration,” which will provide a Praise Band for the weary volunteers.

Please click on the following link to confirm (and mark your calendars!), as follows:

http://www.rethinkchurch.org/impact-event/2013-great-day-service

I, for one am amused, and at the same time impressed, by the methodical, machine-like obsession of the United Methodist  Church in their quest to penetrate community of Wildomar for their particular brand of “congregational development.”

But then, that’s apparently why they call themselves “Methodists.”

Comments can be made to zakturango@excite.com.


When Politicians Miss The Simple Meaning Of Words….

April 15, 2013

… DUMB THINGS HAPPEN

Despite my latest allegation that yet another serial Brown Act violation has occurred in the City of Wildomar, generated from the Parks & Recreation Subcommittee meeting on March 12, 2013, when Wildomar Parks Oversight Committee (“Oversight”) member Scott Bradstreet, after being in full discussions with Oversight colleague, Kristen West, attempted to make contact with a third Oversight member, Monty Goddard, via e-mail on March 20, 2013, the responsibility for this violation once again falls at the feet of Subcommittee members, Bridgette Moore and Marsha Swanson.

In the same manner that the issue of what constitutes a “marriage,” the definition of marriage (man plus woman? man  plus man?, etc.) is the point of the debate.

Likewise, the definition of what constitutes an “oversight” committee leads to municipal confusion. In this case,  voters were promised a committee of financial critics whom Wildomar City Council  could not ignore.

A simple review of the individual applications to be on the Oversight Committee submitted by West and Bradstreet leaves little room for doubt that they are interested more in the promotion of parks & recreation  than seeking to restrain fiscal excess in the utilization of Measure Z funds.

This raises the question of the intent of Bridgette and Marsha in their selection of “Oversight” Committee members. Did they wish to populate the Oversight Committee with nothing but pro-park proponents?

If they did,  their intentions would be to subvert their promise in the ballot language of  Measure Z to provide “fiscal oversight” to the expenditure of Measure Z funds.

Instead, they should have simply created a Parks Citizen’s Committee, where they could  empanel as many of their  pro-park supporters and friends as they wish.

Understandably,  Moore and Swanson fear the fiscal criticism that  might emanate from a legitimate “oversight “committee. They only want to hear people from people who think like them.

However, Moore and Swanson have already experienced the negative consequences from accepting unfiltered advice from the Blue Ribbon Committee (“BRC”) of several years past, and apparently don’t wish to expose themselves to the political fallout  of BRC 2.0.

Comments may be made to zakturango@excite.com.

As a result, we are left with square pegs in round holes. 

And Brown Act violations instead of green parks.


H.O.P.E. Seeks Your….

April 14, 2013

…VOTE

Ron Hewison, Executive Director for H.O.P.E.  (“Helping Our People in Elsinore”) is asking the readers of Wildomar Magazine  for their assistance in securing a $20,000 grant from Wal-Mart. 

Hewison explains it best in his e-mail dated April 14, 2013, as follows:

From: Ron (hopeinelsinore@aol.com
Subject: HOPE
Date: 04/14/2013 09:59 AM
To: zakturango@excite.com
Morning to you Gil,
 
Seeking a favor for HOPE – we are one of 170 agencies nationwide that qualified (after submitting a written narrative) for a $20,000 award from Walmart as part of their Fighting Hunger campaign. Now the process moves to generating votes on Facebook. The top 60 vote getters will each receive $20, 000.
 
Today we are in the top 60 but I’d like to move up the leader board.  
The funds will be used for our Backpacks For Kids program. This sends 250 Lake Elsinore and Wildomar kids home with a back pack of food each Friday.  
The goal is to have them focus on studies  on Monday morning rather than waiting for the free lunch.
There is a chance we can break the  cycle of poverty in the family.
The link to  vote is below. Each person can vote once a day between now and 30 April.
 
If you could post this opportunity on Wildomar Magazine it could well keep us in the frame.
Thanks Ron for HOPE
After all of the recent disclosure of e-mails exposing the darker side of local politics , Wildomar Magazine is happy to encourage its readers support this fine and generous organization.
‘Nuff said.

Daisy Chains In…

April 12, 2013

… WILDOMAR’S PARKS

The now infamous March 12, 2013 meeting of the Wildomar City Council Parks & Recreation Subcommittee actually involved more than one Brown Act violation.

 Over and above the shameful  implementation of a ” hub and spoke-type”  serial violation where two subcommittee members, Bridgette Moore and Marsha Swanson, somehow induced the city manager to make contact with a third city councilmember, Tim Walker, in order to further their Great Day of Service enterprise, which they have since been forced to rescind.

The recission is, of course, a self-inflicted wound.

But, unfortunately, there is more.

According to the digital recording of the aforementioned meeting,  Wildomar Parks Oversight Committee members, Kristen West and Scott Bradstreet were present and fully engaged in the discussions facilitating the United Methodist Church’s Great Day of Service 2013.

Since there was only two of them present, their presence did not constitute a Brown Act violation, although their presence may  raise questions of their future ability to provide fiscal oversight to the very people who invited them to the secretive meeting.  

However, Bradstreet’s involvement went far beyond the ethical constraints of being a member of the Oversight Committee to  point where he became the  apparent creator of a document titled, “MARNA O’BRIEN PARK  RENOVATION PLAN JUNE 2013. “

 The extensive two page document includes the following outline:

 PROJECT GOALS:

PROJECT PROGRAM:

PRE-WORK:  CITY PRE-WORK

PHASE I:  CLEANUP

PHASE II:  PREPARATION

PHASE III:  INSTALLATION

PLANT PALETTE:

It is a comprehensive and thorough report, consistent with Bradstreet’s purported experience in landscape design, save for one important element.

Nowhere in his report does Bradstreet suggest that the installation of newly-seeded grass would be better performed in any month other than the month of June, due to the additional, expensive watering requirements necessary for a tender grassy area to survive the months of July and August in Wildomar.

If Bradstreet attended the meeting merely as a citizen volunteer, his “renovation” plan should have been required to be checked by an independent, professional landscape engineer/architect, who would have understood the shortcomings of a June planting.

If Bradstreet attended the meeting as a member of the Oversight Committee, his obvious involvement in the Great Day of Service enterprise should render any future fiscal “oversight,” on his part moot, given that his renovation plan, if followed, would have required the expenditure of additional park funds due to the higher watering requirements, unless he  would be willing to criticize the extra expense as an afterthought.

ortunately, the recent retrenchment of the Wildomar City Council also renders Bradstreet’s renovation plan meaningless and moot, as the entire Scope of Work for park rehabilitation will now have to be re-started and conducted  in the public eye, where interested citizens can review end , if necessary, challenge every questionable element of the process proposed.

Finally, in a demonstration of the obvious need for continuous “oversight” by the citizens of Wildomar, Oversight Committee member Bradstreet attached his renovation plan to an e-mail dated March 20, 2013 to a third member of the Oversight Committee, Monty Goddard, thereby committing a “daisy chain” version of a serial Brown Act violation. In addition, within the body of his e-mail, Bradstreet inquired of  Goddard, ” Monty, let me know how you’d like to get involved with this.”

Rather than confronting the Wildomar City Council with another formal Complaint, I thought it sufficient to publicize the violation and seek, in the future, additional ethical training for the Oversight Committee, given that the members are generally political novices and political unsophisticates.

That being said, any future Brown Act violations, intentional or otherwise, will result in a formal complaint, requiring full consideration of the Wildomar City Council.

 Comments can be made to zakturango@excite.com.