Councilors heard some bad news from Fire Union President Diego Arencon and Fire Department Capt. Frank Soto at the Monday, Sept. 17 meeting. A study by an international union identified problems with AFD's response times, citing poor staffing and a lack of quick communication with the BernCo fire department. The Alibi will explore the study in more depth in our next issue.
Councilors once again removed a number of items from the agenda, leaving a skeleton meeting with little meat on its bones.
|Issue||Council's Take||Reporter's Take|
|Tolerance? We’ll pass.Councilor Rey Garduño proposed a memorial proclaiming Sept. 21 as Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Day. It would honor gay and lesbian military personnel on the one-year anniversary of the repeal going into effect.||The measure failed on a 4-3 vote with Councilors Don Harris and Isaac Benton being excused. Benton was absent from the meeting, and Harris walked out before the vote without explanation. Left-leaning Councilors Garduño, Ken Sanchez and Debbie O’Malley supported the memorial.||It was no surprise that this vote split along party lines. But shame on the four councilors—Trudy Jones, Brad Winter, Dan Lewis and Michael Cook—who voted against this measure. It would have done nothing other than show support and tolerance for all who serve in the military.|
|Landmark ParkBataan Memorial Park near Carlisle on Lomas was up for designation as a city landmark. The park is named in honor of the soldiers of the 200th Coast Artillery Regiment and their brave sacrifices in the Philippines during World War II.||The Bataan Death March was a forced prisoner transfer by the Japanese Army that killed hundreds of American POWs. Several survivors were on hand to speak in favor of the landmark status, which protects the property from alterations. They were given a standing ovation by councilors and the audience. The measure passed unanimously.||This is one of the city’s biggest, most beautifully green, lush parks and home to many large mature trees. It is used by many groups, from Frisbee fanatics to the modern-day medieval Society of Creative Anachronism. It should absolutely be considered a city landmark. The only thing that could improve it is if one corner were sectioned off as a dog park.|