Americana generates its own civic problems

While reading the Sunday edition, I came across two articles about the proposed Americana at Brand expansion.

One was a full-page ad saying that Glendale faces an $8-million deficit this year with threats to services like police, fire and parks. Then it goes on to say that the Americana has generated more than $3 million in revenue. Now they want to take away a small piece of property with a motel on it and add it to the Americana, (saying by doing this the city will get more revenue.

And put a small businessman out of business.

I was against this project from the beginning and still am. Besides bringing revenue to the city, it has also brought a lot of traffic congestion to the downtown area and will add more if this expansion goes through.

A letter to the editor written by one of our former Mayors Carl W. Raggio ("Americana revenue puts it ahead of game," Feb. 13) was also pro Americana. Raggio contended that the added revenue from the expansion can go for more staffing of traffic control officers. Seems to me we need them now!

My question to all this is how did the city of Glendale survive before all this extra revenue came to this once fine city? I think the simple way to fix this is to leave the motel where it is, get rid of our existing City Council and elect a new City Council with accounting backgrounds so they can properly handle all that revenue the Americana generates now.

Less traffic congestion, no need for more traffic control officers and a small business man still in business.

Richard Jenkins


Parents group would stay alert to class size

I am writing in response to Marcelyn D. Bible's letter in which she claimed there was no "guarantee" the bond funds would be used to reduce class sizes ("Bond can't be used for the right reasons," Feb. 10).

SOS Glendale, a grassroots organization of Glendale Unified parents, appealed to the school board last year to research the most expedient and cost effective way to raise funds for the district that would not only protect core academic programs, retain qualified teachers and maintain smaller class sizes, but also address the issues of necessary facilities maintenance and modernization of technological programs.

We were invited, along with various business and community members and teacher union representatives, to meet at Supt. Dick Sheehan's office to discuss in an open forum how the funds raised by a bond measure could best be utilized to ensure the continued high quality of education that all of our children currently enjoy at Glendale Unified.

During the course of that meeting, we were assured that while bond money cannot specifically be used to maintain class size reduction, it will allow funds currently being used for other purposes to be shifted into our specific areas of concern, namely retaining our teachers and smaller class sizes.

As further evidence that the school board is not just paying lip service to our concerns as parents, we have been promised representation on the Citizens Oversight Committee that will be established to oversee the disbursement of Measure S revenues.

We are the "guarantee" that the school board will deliver on its promises — parents who want the best education possible for our children.

Edward Bash


Editor's note: Bash is chairman of SOS Glendale, a grassroots group organized by parents in support of the bond measure and a member of the steering committee for the "Yes on S" campaign.

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