The Coastal Post - June, 1998

News And Notes Of Novato

By Betty Machado

Hello, Dear Hearts

June-the month of elections, graduations and weddings. Be sure you vote on Tuesday, June 2. Absentee ballots are becoming the way to go. Good luck to the candidates, and remember to take down the campaign signs as fast as possible.

City Council Meetings

Talk about losing the vote of confidence, the present Council has a lot to be desired. Take the recent discussion regarding appointing new people to the Economic Development Commission: There are only three people still on the Commission. The rest resigned for various reasons. Back in December, the Council was so upset because the citizens were not applying for the vacancies, they extended the time. Even I signed in for the Economic Development Commission. We all trooped down for an interview, scheduled by the Council, gave our best answers and so forth.

Then Ned Lagin and the other two members decided they could not work with new members because they hadn't finished the report for the Master Plan on how to handle the new General Plan. So the Council shelved the applicants and allowed the Commission to become three voting members to finish their job. I read the applications, and was delighted with the people who took the time to apply and be interviewed. The Mayor was apologetic for not taking on the new members "at this time," even though she did agree they were "fast learners." So much for volunteering to serve on the Economic Development Commission in Novato!

The Environmental Training Program of Marin

Applications are accepted from March to September of each year. The purpose of the group is to offer "the knowledge essential to effective advocacy." Classes will occur on nearly all Tuesdays, September though February, from 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. The class size is limited to 30 trainees. The fee is $150 for the term. Contact the Environmental Forum of Marin, POB 74, Larkspur, CA 99477. Voicemail: (415) 479-7814.

Novato School Superintendent resigns

Joel Montero surprised the school board by announcing his resignation after a 23-year career in the Novato School District. Six of the years was being Superintendent. He will leave at the end of the school year, June 30. He said "the heavy time demands of being superintendent were a factor in his decision to leave." The salary is $103,000, making the position the highest paid for a superintendent in Marin. Novato is the largest Unified School District in Marin County. San Rafael School Superintendent Barbara Smith, hired last year, makes the same salary. Deputy Superintendent Nancy Colley will fill the position until the Board selects a replacement. Montero stated the recent situation of racist incidents at San Marin High School was not the reason for leaving. Good luck to Joel Montero in his new position with an educational management firm. The state organization handles financially troubled school districts.

I Walk By Night

Have you heard Trader Joe's may be coming into the space left vacant at Nave's by Thrifty moving out? Many people have asked the management in San Rafael to consider coming to Novato.

Ernie Gray is being asked to finish out Cynthia Murray's Council seat, instead of Ned Lagin, if the seat becomes available following the June 2 election for 5th District Supervisor seat.

Indian Valley College lighted ball field is up for grabs for financing. Sponsor who you feel should receive the honor by calling City Hall, 897-4311.

New Chambers Cable manager

Sean Hogue has replaced Glen Rierson, who has left the company. He has come back to Novato from Chico. He was here in 1990 to 1994 as the assistant manager. He is excited over being involved in the new system-wide reconstruction. He did receive a bad start by coming before the City Council when a citizen came in from San Marin, mad because he found a new green booster on his lawn without his permission.

The City placed a stop-work order on the relocation of the booster cable boxes on private property until Chambers followed the rules set down prior to the work starting. Sean has come back to the City Council to explain how the new program will work. The company is hiring a public relations person to understand what Novato residents expect, and he is listing, through a paid ad, all the streets to be worked on in a weekly program. Both the Novato Advance and the IJ carry the listing. Way to go, Sean. Good luck in your new position.

Transit plan delayed until June 2

The Novato Narrows not being included in the upcoming transit plan has caused the Board some delay before endorsing the November ballot issue. Gene Pratt of Greenbrae feels the ballot issue is not to be endorsed. He is launching a fight against it, although he hasn't received press on his plan. He feels it represents a pork logo of everyone getting their share, but nothing being solved. Watch for the next chapter. You will have both sides to represent the voters when it comes to the ballot in November for a half-cent tax increase.

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