Simmons to return?
The sight of Amber Simmons working out with the Chico State women’s basketball team brightened the spirits of Wildcats fans this week, but their joy may be ephemeral. After leaning toward returning for her senior year, once again she’s seriously considering a transfer.

Simmons softened her stance after meetings with Athletic Director Anita Barker and Coach Molly Goodenbour. But hard feelings resurfaced when Simmons learned she got denied the chance to repeat as an All-American because her coach didn’t nominate her for the honor. Simmons led the 10th-ranked Wildcats to a 24-5 record, averaging 16.5 points and 8.6 rebounds a game, in Goodenbour’s debut season.

“She always prided me on being an All-American,” Simmons said. “Knowing she conveniently missed the deadline upset me.”

It upset her family, too. Kimberly Hunt, her aunt, said she’s encouraging Simmons to sit out a year so she won’t need to get a release from Chico State in order to play for whatever school she wants.

“I was definitely considering to stay,” Simmons said, “but I just hear a lot of things. Every time I pick up the phone, I hear something new. You can’t believe it all, but I’m having doubts. I’m definitely weighing things.”

As detailed in the CN&R’s April 5 cover story ("Fast break-up"), the former Chico High star sought permission to contact other colleges after determining she wouldn’t play another season under the Wildcats’ intense new coach.

Carver High app nixed
Lack of space kept us from reporting earlier that, on March 21, Chico Unified School District trustees turned down an application to form a new, 500-student charter high school named after George Washington Carver, the famous black scientist and humanist. Its principal promoters are Josh Cook, a field representative of state Sen. Sam Aanestad, and Dr. Lee Funk, former superintendent of the Biggs school district.

A charter review committee determined that the proposed school did not have a sound educational plan and was unlikely to succeed. Members of the committee also interviewed the founders’ former colleagues in Biggs and as a result were worried about the charter’s financial stability. And they found, as others had before them (see “Backers hit by flak in Biggs,” CN&R Newslines, Feb. 22), that communication with the would-be founders was difficult.

Tag a tagger, cop a grand
The city of Chico has announced it’s upped the reward for tips leading to the arrest and conviction of graffiti taggers to $1,000. If you see someone tagging, call 9-1-1, but if you know of someone who did so, you can call the Reward Tip Line at 897-4940. Don’t worry, you can remain anonymous.

The city is committed to eradicating graffiti within 24 hours, City Manager Greg Jones said in a press release. “Graffiti is blight that leads to other problems that endanger the quality of life in … Chico,” he explained. A key element in that effort is the city’s Graffiti Eradication Van (pictured).

The public is asked to report graffiti on the graffiti hotline—898-2003.