Eye On Modesto

Thoughts and observations about Modesto and Stanislaus County

Archive for the month “October, 2012”

The Bee Editors Get it Right

Black & Veatch Corporation logo

Black & Veatch Corporation logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By Dave Thomas

Good afternoon.  If you have not read today’s BEE Editorial page, be prepared for a rare surprise.

The BEE’s editorial opinion is right-on correct, and actually shows regard for the Citizens of our community.
You are thinking that I have lost my mind, right.  But no, the BEE pretty much gets it right.  They
printed a story yesterday which told us that our mayor, city staff and MID management were making
a deal with the fools who screwed up the Phase 2 water plant debacle.  But, they were doing the People’s
business, behind closed doors, and were not intending to tell us anything about the deal.  
Of course, we are quite used to these back door deals, done secretly, and we know that they will make a deal
that satisfies THEM, because they can raise our water, electricity and sewer rates any time they want, for as 
much as they want.  They make the deal, YOU and I PAY FOR IT.  
The BEE quotes the mayor as saying it will cost the ratepayers nothing.  That is the normal signal to us
that it is going to cost us A LOT!!  So, the opinion explains that the sophisticated editors understand that the city,
the MID and the people who can not build a water plant do not want anyone to know who gets zoomed on the
deal, because it is always US.  
BUT, the BEE opines that, “...the MID and city have a bigger responsibility to their constituents than to 
Black & Veatch.”  I know this is totally out of character from a paper whose primary goal
is to defend and protect government.  But you know that I always say, “Come to the table.  Come early or late,
but come to the table.”  We shall see if the BEE is serious about this concern for the People on this or other 
I recommend, however, that we give the editors our kudos, and encourage them to continue with this attitude.
As ever, Dave

“What’s on America’s Mind”

Topic to be covered include MID’s Tom Van Groningen and Glen Wild short circuiting public input, how Tom and Glen “approved”  $21,000 for their special friend Carol Whiteside without a purchase order, the committee they propose to decide our water future, Modesto Chamber of Commerce’s lobbyist Cecil Russell taking your tax money for his project You get to pay for his applause,   McClatchy’s Modesto Pravda’s very own Tokyo Rose…Judy Sly, Low Hanging Fruit is how some of  the City and County liaison members referred to Salida as, This and More so join us at 7:00 PM Wednesday right here on BlogTalk or on 104.9 FM Salida.


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More information can be found on these and other subjects at www.EyeOnModesto.com

Modesto Chamber of Commerce Drops the Ball Wants City Bailout Money

By Emerson Drake

Over the last several months we’ve been regaled with several tales lauding  the Modesto Chamber of Commerce’s CEO/lobbyist Cecil Russell and side kick Mike Moradian for raising money to restore Modesto’s Arch.  While I acknowledge it’s a fine project, and will be somewhat appreciated, does the City of Modesto really have $40,000 in the General Fund with nowhere else to go?  We’re even being asked to throw in $15,807 from the Mann Grant Donation into the project for a total of $55.807.00.

At a recent City Council meeting lobbyist Cecil Russell was given a round of applause as was Mike Moradian for selling the $3.00 “Golden” candy bars.  There were several stories in the Modesto Bee ( Aug.18, Sept.7 & 11 and Oct.1) about what a great job the Chamber has done raising money.  But now they come, hat in hand, begging for tax money that could have gone toward another police officer on the street. 

It’s Item #11 under new business http://www.modestogov.com/sirepub/mtgviewer.aspx?meetid=460&doctype=AGENDA   on this weeks agenda.  What?  You say you haven’t read about it anywhere?  Not even in the Modesto Bee?  Apparently City manager Greg Nyhoff requested this item be added.  But how did he hear about the need?

There is little doubt that when he blew off last weeks agenda meeting and missed half of the Safety and Communities meeting, he was being apprised of the situation as the city liaison with the Chamber.  He failed to mention it upon his return from the meeting, but since he likes to keep city business on a need to know basis or as strictly required by law, we don’t wonder why, as it would keep his secret as long as possible.  At least several City Council members were surprised to see this item on the agenda when it was published on Friday afternoon.

The Chamber of Commerce has already planned a celebration for October 26, 2012.  But they FAILED to raise the necessary money to pay for it.  Unfortunately it says more about Mr. Russell’s leadership than it does about Modesto businessmen.  I don’t believe this would never have happened under someone who was  as  fiscally responsible as former Chamber  CEO Joy Madison.

Lobbyist Cecil Russell has done a lot of bad-mouthing against the Modesto City Council over his client/benefactor the Double Tree turning down the Modesto Centre Plaza deal. You would think he would have run into some resistance for being a grandstander who failed in his responsibility to come through with the promised funding.

Next time the Chamber of Commerce or its CEO have grandiose plans (for the public’s good) I hope they can pay for it themselves and leave Modesto’s general fund out of the equation.

“What’s on America’s Mind”

English: Ca-99 (northbound) near Modesto, Cali...

English: Ca-99 (northbound) near Modesto, California (1). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Wednesday night at 7:00 PM Pacific

The discussion will include an update on the potential annexation of Salida  by Modesto and a meeting that took place behind closed doors,  the continuing saga of four homeless hero’s, Sheriff Christianson and Correct Healthcare Solutions campaign contribution, Modesto scrambling over Centre Plaza being thrown back by the Double Tree,  has MID paid Martino Graphics the $6,000 without the Board voting, this and more so give us a listen and find out concerns the Bee won’t tell you about.

Our flagship station 104.9 FM Salida Modesto


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