I moved to California some 32 years ago, just after a year of extreme drought. I was shocked to discover that homeowners collected water from their showers in buckets, reused water from their washers and let landscaping die. I was also shocked to discover that residents of Southern California did none of these things and enjoyed the use of water without restrictions.
Well, here we are 32 years later and we are in the same boat, washed up on land with no promise of water to water our lawns, or wash our clothes, cars or ourselves. It seems like nothing was learned from the droughts of the past.
We are destined to keep repeating this travesty unless we plan for the future. It is time to act, not hope for rain or snow
The California Oaks program of the California Wildlife Foundation works to conserve oak ecosystems because of their critical role in providing habitat, sequestering carbon, maintaining healthy watersheds and sustaining cultural values.
The foundation recently completed a report that demonstrates the importance of oaks for California’s biodiversity, with a focus on species and subspecies that are federally and/or state-designated as endangered, threatened and candidate (listed). Thirty-three listed and fully protected vertebrates are dependent upon oak habitat for reproduction, cover or feeding, and 134 listed plants and 26 invertebrates are associated with oaks.
Measures to conserve, restore, and uphold protections for oaks, California’s primary old-growth resource, are needed. Gov. Newsom’s Executive Order N-82-20, sets a goal to conserve at least 30% of California’s land and coastal waters by 2030 to combat the biodiversity and climate crises. The “30×30” plan should include incentives to protect and perpetuate oaks.
Bears Ears in Utah is a cultural site of the Hopi, Navajo and Ute people. It was designated as a national monument by then-President Obama. However, during then-President Trump’s first year in office in 2017, he signed an executive order reducing the area of the site in favor of drilling for both oil and gas as well as mining.
I urge President Biden to sign an executive order to once again designated Bears Ears as a national monument.
Billy Trice Jr.
Re. “Pending bill opens door to CalPERS corruption,” Page A7, May 4:
Columnist Dan Walters writes that Assembly Bill 386 will allow the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) board members and administrators to make lending decisions with CalPERS assets “on their own without outside scrutiny” as a way to increase higher investment returns needed to reduce the Systems’ estimated unfunded liability of about $160 billion.
Unsustainable defined benefit pension funding problems led most private sector companies to eliminate them in favor of 401K pensions plans with employee and employer contributions.
It’s past the time that public sector employers transition to 401K plans; thereby allowing employees to take greater control over their pension assets while giving taxpayers needed tax relief.
But California government labor unions can be expected to vigorously fight any such commonsensical but inevitable idea.
Willie Mays’ 90th birthday was Thursday.
In my opinion, Willie Mays is the greatest player of all time. But my Willie Mays story is much more personal and “soft.”
As a 10-year-old kid in Chicago, my dad took me and my sister to a Cubs vs. Giants game. After the game, as we were leaving, a group of Andy Frain ushers, reputed to be the best in the world, were escorting Willie up to a post-game show. They knocked my little sister down.
Willie Mays – Willie Mays! – stopped the group, helped my sister up, and told her, “Excuse them. They need more manners.”
Happy birthday, sir.
Re. “Facebook board’s Trump decision could have wider impacts,” Page A4, May 5:
Yes, we have a right to free speech in this country, but we don’t have a right to be heard.
Donald Trump certainly is free to stand on the street corner with a megaphone and shout his lies, but he has no right to require that people listen. He can write what he wants to social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter, but just as any other publisher, they have the right to reject what he submits.