Thumbs Up to City of Hollister

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The following events, organizations and people deserve either a
Thumbs Up or a Thumbs Down this week:
Thumbs Up: To local grower Kay Filice, who was recently appointed to head the Central California Grower-Shipper Association’s board of directors. Filice is the first woman ever to lead the association. Her appointment reflects the growing role of women in agriculture. Filice, as head of the association, plans to work to make sure more research is done on food-borne illness and keep the public informed about what growers and shippers are doing to make sure food is safe. We couldn’t agree more with Filice’s stated goals. We are also proud that one of our own is leading this important organization.

Thumbs Down: To state funding decisions that have forced the San Benito High School District to cut the summer band program. State funding used to be provided for all general remedial courses, but it is now primarily dedicated to supplemental instruction for students who have not passed the high school exit exam. Despite these cuts, the school’s administration and school board decided to continue to fund all remedial courses (make-up classes for students who had previously failed). But because of increases in costs to the district, fewer enrichment courses, or courses that are not required, such as band, are being offered, and fewer students can take summer school classes. This is unfortunate. Summer school is a great opportunity to for students to take courses such as band that they might otherwise not have an opportunity to experience. We hope that this important summer band program can be saved.

Thumbs Up: To the City of Hollister. After long delays a plan is in the works to implement the city’s general plan. We support Hollister Development Services Director Bill Avera’s goal to bring the city back up to speed; we are disappointed that it hasn’t happened already. The city has closed many of its offices to the public on Fridays to focus on long-term planning. We sincerely hope Avera’s plan will put some teeth into the general plan the city spent so much time and money developing.

Thumbs Up: To the Hollister Police Department for making a major breakthrough in the rash of burglaries that have plagued our fair city in recent months. Police recently linked 11 burglaries to a man arrested in December after finding a cache of stolen goods in a storage facility. We hope the stolen items are promptly returned to their rightful owners. We also hope police continue to make progress in tracking down and arresting thieves.

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