Last night (June 14, 2016) was a great night for one Norma Moye. In case you just haven’t been paying attention for the last 50 years, she is the Cheerleader-in-Chief for the city of Paso Robles, a job she has performed joyfully and effectively since her high school days as a Bearcat. For more than two decades she has been the heart of the downtown in her role as the Executive Director of the Paso Robles Main Street Association. Under her leadership our downtown has recovered from the edge of oblivion, survived a major earthquake and thrived as the historic and cultural center of our community. Last night, in the Park Cinemas, Norma’s friends did something very few have accomplished: they surprised her. She arrived at 6:30 p.m. expecting to honor Steve Kalar, local artist. It turns our Mr. Kalar was the Master of Ceremonies in front of a theater full of admirers who had come to say a massive “Thank You” to Norma. With characteristic smile and wit, Norma received praise from the City of Paso Robles and many Main Street members and admirers. She received proclamations and a plaque with a special set of antique “keys to the city” from me and all the Paso Robles City Council. The celebration isn’t over. During the regular City Council meeting on June 21st we will honor her again with a special reception at City Hall. You’re invited to be there. Please join us as we continue our salute to this very special lady.
Celebrations were the order of the week. We also celebrated the re-opening of the swimming pool at Centennial Park. We cut the ribbon and welcomed the first summer swimmers. The pool has been re-opened after five years of closure due to budget cutbacks. I hope families will take full advantage of the facility as the hot days ahead overtake us. Congratulations, Paso Robles. Once again you’ve done the impossible.
Good news from the State of California. It seems they have recognized the fact that the people of Paso Robles have been very responsible with regards to water usage. Mandatory restrictions have been eased somewhat and an additional watering day will be added to the weekly schedule. We continue to conserve in deference to state demands and to maintain sufficient daily water storage to address emergencies. Overall, Paso Robles water supplies remain adequate for build-out as we enjoy three sources: groundwater, Nacimiento water and river water. When our new recycling unit comes on line it will produce nearly 5-million gallons per day of non-potable irrigation water, thus providing a fourth source.
Our new wastewater treatment plant is online. The ribbon-cutting held recently marked the official start of operations at the state-of-the-art plant. Its design is so advanced that PG&E has written a check to the City of Paso Robles for $563,000 because of the plant’s energy efficiency.
Our police department has a new officer. Thursday, June 9, members of the Paso Robles Police Department attended the graduation of Maeghan Smallwood from the Allan Hancock Police Academy. Smallwood is the newest police officer to join the Paso Robles Police Department and was sworn in by City Manager Tom Frutchey on Friday, June 10. We continue to support public safety as the highest city priority.
The new two-year budget will be reviewed again at the Juen 21st City Council meeting. There have already been two hearings. Now is the time to check it out and make your suggestions. You can see the draft of the budget online at prcity.com or at the Paso Robles City Library. Even if you can’t make the meeting you can make comments by contacting staff or any Council member. You may send your ideas to me at email@example.com.
Road work continues in the city and, while that is good news, the projects do slow traffic at times. Some have expressed frustration and I understand that. We must endure a little discomfort now, however, to enjoy better, smoother roads in the future. Let’s all just hang in there.
Last, but not least, I am among the many who are shocked and saddened by the wholesale removal of oak trees in the Adelaide area west of the city. This is out of keeping with the historic environmental sensitivity of our local farmers and ranchers. I urge the County Board of Supervisors to freeze all permits for grading that would result in large scale oak tree removal and immediately make plans to work with property owners to develop an ordinance that will prohibit such insensitive treatment of our land in the future.
Until next we blog, here’s to you Paso Robles!