music in the park san jose

The following deserve either a thumbs up or thumbs down:

THUMBS UP: Sounds like some sensible ideas are being floated in San Juan Bautista. These strategies, however, came from a group of architectural professionals and students who spent last weekend getting entrenched in the Mission City and offering their insight on the town’s direction. Those ideas included implementing flexible design guidelines, improving the sidewalks and signs and using buildings more creatively. At the “design charette” organized by the American Institute of Architects, they talked about doing a better job of touting the city’s history and incorporating newer styles of architecture with the long-existing buildings there.

It’s advice leaders in San Juan Bautista should heed seriously, because the troubled city’s only chance of survival as an incorporated entity is by making major changes – like these – and by redirecting the way officials think and act. Taking a more progressive outlook in the right places and doing a better job of selling the town’s assets is the only way to save the Mission City.

THUMBS DOWN: Telling by Alberto Ramirez’s family income and their ability to pay for a spacious Hollister home, they had no chance – barring a miraculous financial wind – to afford monthly mortgage payments split with another local family on the $720,000 house. The California Department of Real Estate has filed an accusation against the San Jose firm ACR Investments that sold them the home, and the case is headed to a hearing.

This is a sad story about some bad seeds in the real estate industry and abuse of these Spanish-speaking families – Ramirez’s annual salary as a strawberry picker is $14,000 – who thought they found a dream home right here in Hollister. It turned out to be a nightmare.

THUMBS UP: After months of debating and campaigning for the special election, Measure T supporters – and the entire city – won a decisive and much-needed victory with 66 percent of voters approving the initiative. Hollister has been in decline for five years and had been heading down the same, steep path before Tuesday.

The increase is an investment that will boost city services – especially public safety – to respectable levels while Hollister makes strides to climb from this hole and get this community on track for something special. From here, it’s crucial that citizens stay interested and criticize when necessary, so that city officials know we’re all here watching if their commitments falter.

THUMBS UP: Although veterans deserve our gratitude every day of the year, we especially recognize them on Veterans Day, which is Sunday. Whether you’re for or against the Iraq war, whether you’re for or against war in general, we encourage residents to take some time Sunday to thank a veteran for his or her service – many of whom risked their lives for our country.

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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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