Health and drama

A handy guide to self-improvement; plus two contentious council meetings

Last Thursday, the day I typically edit the cover story for the following week, the CN&R’s server was down and it didn’t get dialed back in until the end of the work day. That made it difficult to be productive, but it did afford me a few hours to start going through the vast amounts of documentation I’ve accumulated in the nearly 11 years I’ve worked at this newspaper.

To put it mildly, there’s a lot.

And while I didn’t exactly make a New Year’s resolution, one of my goals for 2018 is culling the things that aren’t essential and making my space at Second and Flume streets a more pleasant working environment.

On that front, I got some great advice from a local professional organizer, a woman who helps her clients purge and reorganize their homes. You can read about her in this week’s cover story, the annual Health Issue, which this year highlights a variety of strategies—10 altogether—to living healthier. One of her tips for me: Set aside time each week to go through things. Sound advice.

We focus on health in January because it’s the time of year Americans, myself included, seem to pay a little more attention to our well-being. We came up with a good list and scoured this area for experts in each field—from organization and stress management to sleep and hydration. It’s a handy package we hope you’ll draw inspiration from.

And then there’s news. Boy, is this issue chock-full of it.

For starters, contributor and former CN&R Editor Robert Speer checks in with coverage of the Chico Scrap Metal saga (see page 9)—current news out of the civil court and also some background on the amortization process gone awry.

When I write “saga,” I mean it. This is the issue that won’t go away. Moreover, the Chico City Council majority won’t let it go away—the four conservatives, as you’ll read about in Howard Hardee’s story, just ensured as much in closed session during the panel’s regular meeting (see page 10).

Their decision to appeal Butte County Superior Court Judge Tamara Mosbarger’s ruling—that the city’s lawsuit to halt a referendum effort is without merit—likely will hang like an albatross around the necks of those who run for re-election in November. Three of their seats are up for grabs in the general election, though it’s unclear at this time whether all three will attempt to retain them.

Meanwhile, while Hardee spent Tuesday evening at Chico’s City Council chambers, Managing Editor Meredith J. Cooper spent the night covering the Oroville City Council meeting. There, several attendees and, in particular, the mayor, pulled out all the stops to try to put the kibosh on a move to consider allowing commercial cannabis operations, including dispensaries.

The meeting was standing-room-only, including for Cooper, whose laptop ran out of juice during a discussion that ran past 11:30 p.m. The operative word here: drama (see page 8). We’re talking major Reefer Madness-level hand-wringing in which religion was invoked as a form of opposition. No kidding. You have to read it to believe it.