Mailbag: Gatto deserves kudos for pension bill

Assemblyman Mike Gatto has already proven why he is the right choice for the 43rd Assembly District seat. I was very pleased to read that the assemblyman had introduced legislation to cap municipal liability for runaway pension costs authorized by poorly run cities ("Gatto introduces bill to ease pension burden following Bell scandal," Aug. 19).

There is no good reason why Glendale residents should have to pay these costs if another city, like Bell, is the one that agreed to the enormous salaries and pensions. Gatto's bill will free up the much-needed funds Glendale needs to keep police on the beat and potholes filled. Simply put, we prefer our tax dollars to be spent that way — and not on the outrageous salaries for management in other cities.

Gatto deserves major kudos for protecting local taxpayers, and major kudos for introducing this legislation.

Laurie Collins


Kimber column did disservice to community

I am highly supportive of free speech and opinions, and have appreciated the discourse and perspective voiced in Dan Kimber's articles in the past. Unfortunately, Kimber did a disservice to the local sports programs, including Hoover football, as well as the children who play them ("Education Matters: Athletics can be 'touchy' subject," Aug. 13).

The article could have more effectively used his "voice" to highlight the incredible diversity of youth sports programs and their benefits to our community and children.

Likely, he is not aware of the outstanding programs in our community that foster the development of skills, teamwork and camaraderie through after-school sports. There are a number of local sports programs for the children in our community:

Glendale Bears, a youth football (and cheer) league

La Crescenta Falcons for track and cross country

Jewel City Little League baseball and softball

AYSO soccer

YMCA programs

Glendale parks and recreation programs

The programs are at times that are good for working parents and open to boys and girls from 5 to 14 years old (until high school sports programs kick in). The diversity of programs, as well as the diversity of the children and families involved, is what we love about living in Glendale.

It is these types of programs that reinforce to the children that sports programs are avenues to physical fitness, hard work, discipline, teamwork and fun. The children learn that it is how you play the game, and winning, while extremely rewarding, is not always achieved. Learning to deal with adversity and still coming back to work on the skills as a team is an equally important life skill for children to learn.

Interestingly, Hoover High is the home field for the Glendale Bears youth football league. If you've ever been by Hoover on a fall Saturday, you'd witness over the course of seven football games the incredible spirit, passion for the children, the sport and amazing support — plus exciting games.

Dan, I suggest you come by on Sept.11 for the opening games of the Glendale Bears season and you'll see the youth program that you believe is lacking. It exists.

Now for Hoover High football, it is disaffected adults who have underfunded the program, not invested in the equipment, field or support to ensure the health of the program. It is not the Hoover football program, young men in it, or even the student body's involvement at the school we should be discussing. It is easy to criticize and complain; it is much harder to encourage and take the lead in supporting and building.

Our family and hundreds of others have taken the stance to lead by example and get our children involved. I encourage Kimber to do the same and get the word out to the community about the youth sports programs.

Imagine the satisfaction if Kimber could use his influence to encourage the community to get involved in supporting these programs and Hoover High School football. Now that would be great to see.

Denise Grubb


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