Letters to the Editor
Soccer field needs some TLC
Today as I was walking to the new farmers market site, I came across a sight that I have missed for a number of years, a soccer game. A bunch of middle aged guys having a great time with their families cheering them on! The Deportivo de Santa Rosa vs. Los Chevos, a league that requires the players to be 30 years old plus. Although the game ended in a tie, it was energetic, competitive, and exhibited a great deal of talent. The challenge of the competition was exhilarating to watch with some real local talent in the mix, but the real challenge was the field. Although much improved since the last couple of years of deferred maintenance, it is fraught with dangerous divots that add a perilous element to the game.
I am proud of Kenwood's dedication to improving the town and its neighbor's natural habitats and parks, and believe it's time to put some energy into making the soccer field yet one more instance of our Kenwood “can do” attitude. My understanding is that there are domain issues with the field, which plague the unincorporated venues of Sonoma County. However, as we stand tall as independent residents of this county on a number of issues of value to us, I would like to propose that we make our soccer field a priority among the unique facets of life that make Kenwood a great place to live and an asset to the County.
To be honest, I do not have a clear vision of how to accomplish this task; however, I would look forward to joining like-minded residents or businesses who think that “avoidable broken ankles” should not be a part of soccer and that our field should be one of the best in the county. If there is a campaign or if I can join in the initiation of one, please let me know.
Support Kenwood School; Yes on Measure B
My wife Anne and I retired to the Oakmont Village community 15 years ago in June of 2001, after long careers in public education on the Monterey Peninsula. I was a teacher, principal and Superintendent of Schools in Pacific Grove Unified School District (Kindergarten through grade 12) and Anne served as the Human Resources Director at Monterey Peninsula College. We also served as consultants to several educational institutions. As we became involved in various community activities in this area, we were interested to learn that our Oakmont residence was in the Kenwood School District and that our property tax bill included a parcel tax in support of Kenwood School.
We decided to become involved with the Kenwood School through activities supported by the Oakmont Kiwanis Club, both serving on the Kenwood Education Foundation (KEF) and Jay also serving on the Kenwood Board of Education. Our efforts and experiences with the teachers, support staff, superintendent/principal, parents and most of all the students, have been tremendously rewarding. We have found that they all need our involvement and support, as we certainly want them to have adequate resources in order for them to continue their success. The support of the entire community, including Oakmont, is critical for maintaining current excellent programs and services for the children.
We are writing this letter of support for Measure B. This will be a “mail-in” only election, scheduled for August 2016. A “yes” vote on Measure B will maintain the current annual assessment of $52, to support the children of Kenwood School, taking effect July 1, 2017 and extending until June 30, 2022. The current assessment is due to expire in June of 2017.
The school has fulfilled its promise that all proceeds from the tax would be spent only on student programs, not on administration, pay raises or facilities. The top priority will again be to continue the district's commitment to small class sizes and to maintain and enhance core academic programs and essential educational enrichment programs.
In 2011, 81 percent of the school district community voted “yes” in favor of this parcel tax which collects approximately $100,000 per year.
We now have the opportunity to continue to wisely invest in the successful future of our Kenwood School children by supporting the Parcel Tax renewal on the August 2016 mail-in ballot. Those that are age 65 or older may continue to vote for the tax, but have the option to fill out an exemption form that does not require them to pay the assessment. We encourage the “Yes” vote.
Jay Cobb, Retired K-12 Superintendent, Pacific Grove Unified School District; Cobb Educational Services
Anne Cobb, Retired Human Resource Director, Monterey Peninsula College; Cobb Educational Services
In memorium donations greatly appreciated
On behalf of Kenwood Education Foundation, I would like to thank the individuals who have donated to KEF in memory of Barbara Parsons and Frank Alexander. We've received several donations in their memory and what I found most interesting were the stories and memories shared. Although I never had the pleasure of knowing either of these individuals, it is clear to me that both Barbara and Frank had an incredible impact on the Kenwood community and both were held in very high regard. I don't consider myself a very emotional person but I was deeply moved (almost to tears) by the kind words written, which still resonate with me today. On behalf of KEF, our sincerest condolences go to both families and we want you to know how much we appreciate you thinking of us in your time of need.
Cynthia Coleman, President Kenwood Education Foundation
Board of Supervisors support Veterans buildings
The Sonoma County Veterans Advisory Building Committee would like to thank the Board of Supervisors, especially First District Supervisor Susan Gorin, for the perseverance demonstrated in helping to obtain additional funding for the seven Sonoma County Veteran Buildings.
These memorial Veteran Buildings are vital community assets. Located in Cloverdale, Cotati, Guerneville, Petaluma, Santa Rosa, Sebastopol and Sonoma, each community utilizes its building not only for Veteran Service organizations, but for community and social events. Activities have included helping the homeless in Guerneville, a Veterans Day parade in Petaluma, Sunday flea markets in Santa Rosa, wedding receptions and quinceaneras. The Sonoma Community Center hosted a Thanksgiving meal at Sonoma's building after outgrowing its own local facility.
With the funding that was approved earlier this month, there will be an advertising budget established for all Veteran Buildings, allowing County staff to market the use of each community's structures. This will help make them financially sustainable. A one-time allotment of funds for addressing some of the deferred maintenance issues was also approved.
Along with building use goals, the Sonoma County Veterans Advisory Building Committee has been working with the Board of Supervisors and Sonoma County staff toward the purchase and installation of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) for each of the Veteran Buildings.
In cooperation with local fire agencies and County staff, once training is accomplished, lifesaving AED units will be installed at each building. Veterans will be encouraged to participate in the AED training. We look forward to working together in the future to continue the improvement of the Veteran Buildings in the communities of which they operate.
US Air Force Veteran
Sonoma County Veterans Advisory Committee, Chairperson