That’s just wrong

Forgive my crankiness this week. I pulled an all-nighter writing this week’s cover story, and I dreaded the City Council meeting because of the Tradewinds Court do-over (check my Newsline).

When Jessica Haggard’s dream home came before the council in October, it should have been a formality. Only one decision needed to be made: Whether the city would have need of the easements situated between the two houses on Haggard’s merged lots. The utility companies said no, so this should have been straightforward.

Instead, the deliberation expanded into the impact her remodeling project would have on vehicles, valves and the viewshed. Larry Wahl, Ann Schwab, Scott Gruendl and Mary Flynn got caught up in the neighbors’ emotions and turned Haggard down, based on an interpretation of public interest that three attorneys told them was wrong.

Of course, Haggard sued. Of course, the city didn’t want to mount yet another legal defense, particularly when councilmembers are bracing for more Fogarty fallout. So the council reconsidered the Tradewinds decision Tuesday.

Better to be right the second night than wrong all along.

Now, don’t take my cantankerousness as apathy for her neighbors. They got blindsided because of a planning loophole. They, like Haggard, have a right to sue—difference being they’d go to court over her decision, not our elected representatives’.

While I’m writing about wrongs, here are some other people whose heads are askew.

Hillary Clinton: Hillary, you’ve got to be kidding. You honestly think the oil companies will pay our gas tax for us just because you tell ’em to? I don’t care how many votes you rustle up—not gonna happen unless they do it as a gimmick.

Which is what your “plan” is: a gimmick.

Obama has you dead to rights when he points out that the Mobil/Exxons of the world will simply pass on the “savings” to us via higher prices. Don’t believe him? Then tell me how oil companies could make obscene prices if they charged altruistically.

Kim Yamaguchi’s campaign: The District 5 supervisor’s re-election signs feature three descriptors: competent, capable, caring. I’m sure Robin Huffman doubts their veracity, but let’s take political rivalry out of the equation.

Who, precisely, wants a leader who’s only “competent” and “capable”? True, it seems even that standard is hard to meet; still …

Yamaguchi and I may be political opposites, but I have enough respect for his dedication to know he’s selling himself short. Were he paying me for PR, I’d’ve suggested “experienced, established, energized.”

Chico fire union: I know the firefighters have a contract in place. The council was wrong to ratify it; that’s another matter. The union’s wrongheadedness involves overtime.

Sorry, guys, OT is not a right. If you’ve planned your home finances around it, you have a lot in common with the city. Chief Carter’s proposal is far gentler than what other departments must do to cut back—so for your union rep to stand before the Finance Committee and say everyone else should skimp, but not you, isn’t winning you many friends … or a safety tax.

Sexually predatory sects: Should be self-explanatory; if not, see a therapist.

Thuggish cops: Also self-explanatory.

Me: Thanks for accepting my apology, Miranda. (N&Rers know who; snappishness is why.)