CSEA makes no demands
San Benito Chapter 173 of the California School Employees
Association, representing all classified employees, is not
associated with the California Teachers Association. At the last
board meeting of Oct. 16, Mr. Bradford, President of CTA, read a
memo stating CTA

and CSEA were working together

in a demand that will be part of the selection of the hiring of
the new superintendent.
CSEA makes no demands

San Benito Chapter 173 of the California School Employees Association, representing all classified employees, is not associated with the California Teachers Association. At the last board meeting of Oct. 16, Mr. Bradford, President of CTA, read a memo stating CTA “and CSEA were working together” in a demand that will be part of the selection of the hiring of the new superintendent.

I want to make it clear that I was not aware that Mr. Bradford had given copies of the memo directed to you, the Freelance and The Pinnacle newspapers, until a classified co-worker brought it to me for our union meeting Oct. 15. Some classifieds had signed the bottom of the memo contrary to CSEA’s stand on the issue. I made it known and very clear to the membership that as far as I was concerned, CSEA was not supporting CTA’s demand to be included in the hiring process of the new superintendent.

I want to apologize on behalf of my co-workers for their “ignorance.” They assumed (maybe because of the way they were approached by Mr. Bradford) that CSEA was also demanding we be a part of the hiring process. Again, I want to stress that we are not “demanding” anything.

CSEA wants and desires to work with the Board and Administration for “our students and our staff, teachers and classified, and to continue to make this institution the greatest place for learning, for teaching and for working together!”

Gerarda “Geri” Sanchez


Ridgemark molehill

Regarding road issues at Ridgemark Estates – I have never seen so much confusion over a very simplistic matter. Certain people are trying to create a mountain out of a molehill. With all the communication that has addressed the Ridgemark road issue, it is difficult to present facts on a short form, but I will try.


1. Ridgemark estates has been in CSA#9 from the very beginning.

2. CSA #9, at this writing, covers street lighting and each homeowner is assessed a monthly fee for that service.

3. Homeowners within Ridgemark Estates were never assessed for the roads, as the original owner, Ridgemark Corp., owned the roads.

4. A document dated 5-15-72 shows CSA #9, serving Ridgemark estates, covers seven items, from police protection to roads.

5. Another document dated 4-21-86 shows the same thing. It was approved by the Board of Supervisors of San Benito Co. attested to by the County Clerk. (Note: both documents shown to the Editor.)

6. Roads at Ridgemark were in CSA #9 until about a year ago, why the change?

7. Roads at Ridgemark are private roads, CSA #9 is only a method of collecting money from each resident to maintain those roads. They are being transferred from Ridgemark Corp. to a new owner, which should be the residents of Ridgemark Estates. We use them, we should pay for their maintenance.

Why has our representative from the County Board of Supervisors not wholeheartedly supported this issue? Why has he created such a mountain from a molehill? Our request was an easy solution for the gathering of funds from Ridgemark residents for the future maintenance of the private roads. The county had no liability and was indemnified from any liability. Ridgemark roads are private, not county roads. One more point, there are 26 CSA’s that were all approved except Ridgemark, is that prejudicial or what?

Leonard F. Gomes

Chairman, Security and Roads Advisory Committee


A non-passive pacifist

Last Friday I saw a sign across the street from our Hollister in Black vigil that said, “At a certain point, pacifism is indistinguishable from abdication of responsibility.”

I had to think about that. I’ve been a pacifist, or at least a strong believer in the value and power of nonviolent action, all my adult life. Am

I abdicating my responsibilities? At what point? How?

If the idea of the sign is that sometimes you have to take action in

response to a threat, I agree with that. That’s why I’m there Fridays. If the sign assumes that pacifism means doing nothing in hopes that the threat will go away, someone has the wrong idea about pacifism. If pacifism meant being passive, I wouldn’t be one. I don’t know any passive pacifists.

We are, in part, a violent species, and we respond to violence. Just look at what gets the most attention in newspapers and on TV. However, we’re constantly – and successfully – enlarging the areas in our society where violence is not appropriate or acceptable. How a man “disciplines” his kids or wife is one example. It used to be acceptable for a country to go to war to improve its trade. Not any more (I hope).

Nonviolence doesn’t mean non-action. Gandhi in India and the Civil Rights movement in the U.S. are two well-known examples of nonviolent action at work. There are many other examples. They tend not to get noticed until someone starts shooting. Maybe if we paid more attention, the shooting wouldn’t be necessary.

As Martin Luther King Jr. used to preach, the purpose of nonviolent

action isn’t to eliminate your enemy but to change him or her. It doesn’t

always work, but then violence and war don¹t have that great a success rate


I do a lot of things besides standing on a corner once a week with a sign. They’re all ways of trying to take responsibility for my actions and for the actions of those elected to represent me. But these are not knee-jerk actions. I’m not turning over to anyone else my obligation to decide what¹s right and what’s wrong. I’m trying not to based my judgments on slogans and sound bites out of the TV.

Being passive, I agree, is often an abdication of responsibility. Being

a pacifist is not.

Franz M. Schneider


Ortega’s absence valid

As the coordinator and moderator of the forum for the Gavilan College Board of Trustees candidates that was held on Oct. 17 at Gavilan College, I would like clarify some misunderstandings that may have resulted from an advertisement that was recently published in The Pinnacle by candidate Rito Ramirez.

In his ad, Mr. Ramirez alleges that Dr. Lucha Ortega “did not even have the courtesy to show up at the candidate forum at Gavilan College.” Please know that while Dr. Ortega was unable to attend the forum due to a work commitment made several months prior, she expressed sincere regret about her inability to attend and was more than willing to make arrangements for an alternative date if that was possible. In addition, Ms. Ortega forwarded a comprehensive statement to be read at the Forum that expressed her regrets and outlined her qualifications, experience, and goals for the students and the campus community. Regrettably, it was due to a breakdown in internal process that I was unable to read this statement during the Forum. I did, however, explain that her absence was due to a scheduling conflict.

It is never an easy task to attempt to find a time when several working members of the community can all meet at the same time. Although Dr. Ortega was unable to attend the candidates’ forum, the statement she submitted clearly indicated that she valued its importance.

Jesse Sandow

Student Trustee

Gavilan College

Pinnacle links soldier with home

I manage the local Kelly Services office in Hollister. Actually, I should say I did manage the local office since I’ve recently been called to active duty in the Marine Corps and deployed to Kuwait.

This note is just to thank you for publishing The Pinnacle on the Web. I

can get a touch of home even way over here, and it really helps to stay connected. I’ve always enjoyed your paper tremendously and appreciate the fact that I can read at least some of it while I’m away.

Keep up the good work.

Rich Johnson



How can we stop the “rape” of San Juan Bautista?

Thirty-four-plus luxury homes and nothing for the less affluent. Now the Castro/Breen adobe, a treasure in our city, is to be converted to a Disneyland attraction – or worse.

I am outraged!

Can anyone offer a solution to this latest fiasco?

Elinore S. Hanna

San Juan Bautista

More on Ridgemark roads

Ridgemark participation in CSA #9 was rejected primarily because the County was concerned about liability. This concern appears to be based on the private roads not being up to “County Standards.” Attempts to support this position were made by Supervisor Ron Rodrigues in his Oct. 24, letter “Answers to Road Questions.”

At a large meeting April 24 at the County Building called by Mr. Rodrigues, he directly asked the Public Works Department representatives whether the roads met county standards. The response from Public Works, heard by all the Homeowner Association Presidents and others who attended, was “yes, except for street striping and stop sign markings.” Now they say “No” and try to cover their tracks by saying there is no record of an inspection! What are we to believe?

Ridgemark already participates in the County Service Area for the handling of our streetlights. However, a review of the 1999-2000 actual expenses shows a County Public Works Department charge of $1,997.36 to CSA#9 for a “Road Survey.” At that time roads had not been approved for the CSA. Why was this charge made if public works were not involved with the roads?

It would take too long to cover the background of this problem and the frustration encountered in our recent effort to have our roads placed into CSA#9. This was a plan that the County approved for 27 years, but failed to implement when as to do so. We feel our Supervisor failed to support a legitimate effort to implement a simple solution to a complex problem.

Our homeowner associations are California Corporations. They have elected officers responsible for making decisions for the benefit of their association. All seven homeowner association Boards approved and submitted resolutions supporting CSA #9 on June 10. We have heard that these resolutions were not given to the Supervisors.

Now Mr. Rodrigues says we need a vote of residents on CSA #9. Not only is this not required by our association bylaws, but he took his own vote on Sept. 12 by sending out a ballot to all residents. We don’t know what the response was or how the vote went, but we hear the great majority who responded did so in the affirmative. By the way, all 644 residents in my homeowner association are compelled to participate in a County Service Area by their CC&R’s. So why were they asked to vote?

Ridgemark Estates is a gated community with private roads. The CSA was a simple way to keep it that way. Ridgemark is also a significant property and sales tax base, not to mention the hundreds of volunteers who contribute time and effort to local causes. With over 1,100 homes and 2,700 residents this area deserved more support from our elected officials.

Douglas Boyce


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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.


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