Comments by Carl May

Dream Machines returns for one day only, Sunday

April 23, 2014
For several obvious reasons, but especially the traffic light and funky access to the parking at the south portal area, the tunnels are proving to be an additional source of delay and congestion between Montara and Pacifica on days with heavy traffic. So obvious that this would be so to all but the pollyannas.

Highway 1 parallel trail funding uncertain

April 09, 2014
Can't make the meeting tonight, but this write-up by the county is sick. It starts out with a self-promoting lie, stating that the parallel trail was conceived at the narrowly-constrained and semantically manipulated Highway 1 Safety and Mobility Study of a few years ago. Baloney. This alternative to cars has been knocked around for approximately 25 years. It doesn't matter that the Rip van Winkles of County Parks just woke up to it. Another lie is that the Safety and Mobility Study was community…

Photos: Preview of new Devil’s Slide trail

March 20, 2014
New layer of asphalt on what is supposed to be a trail? Why? Leave the cement K-rail in place? Why? Safety fencing? Why? None of this has a bit to do with what the California Coastal Trail (CCT) is supposed to be. Yes, it's highly destructive. All the energy and materials that are going into the urban development? Why? Development of what could be restored to a more natural setting? Why? A proper trail for experiencing "San Mateo County's headlands" would have reduced the artificial footprint and…

Photos: Preview of new Devil’s Slide trail

March 18, 2014
Trail? Looks like an asphalt highway lined with cement K-rail to me. It's the antithesis of any portion of the California Coastal Trail created to give parallel access to natural features of our coastline. The weird, destructive, wasteful things justified by an artificial urban mindset are always a wonder to me.

Don’t count on El Niño in 2014

March 07, 2014
"However, CA water resource managers will want to make decisions based on the most conservative route - that an El Nino will not materialize to help CA’s water woes out this next winter." Dr. Kim Cobb gets it, like virtually all other scientists considering water issues for the past 60 years: Water agencies need to plan for adequate water during the driest periods to be expected. Of course, this doesn't sit well with cornucopians and growth nuts.

Highway 1 parallel trail funding uncertain

March 07, 2014
As much as I like projects for alternative ways of getting around, I'm glad this irresponsibly large request did not get funded. When San Mateo County takes over these trail projects, they spend as much on planning/design as they would need to build the entire thing. (CCT on Cowell Ranch, CCT on Mirada Surf West, CCT through Fitzgerald, Devil's Slide CCT--all wastes of money by an order of magnitude over what would have been more appropriate projects.) This is because they are totally immersed in…

Gray Whale Watching, March 22

February 12, 2014
A pretty good local spot for whale watching from land is the southern end of the Grey Whale Cove Trail in McNee Ranch, just above the highway and Montara State Beach. A number of sightings over the past week and a half from there, including three at one time on Feb. 6. Often, the best place to look is just beyond the outer line of breakers from the middle of the beach north to the point. These whales seem to be in no hurry, so once you spot one, you can watch its activity for quite a while. Binoculars…

Photo: This weekend’s rain courtesy of the Pineapple Express

February 10, 2014
For a fictional, but fact-inspired, account of a megastorm that slams into California, the book "Storm" by George R. Stewart is a good rainy-day read.

Analysis: CUSD likely to start growing soon, becoming majority Hispanic

April 03, 2013
The new trend is for voters to approve more and more money for fewer and fewer students.

Tunnel is open!  (and pictures and video of the ceremony)

March 31, 2013
"The vultures and hawks circled the ceremonies, but decided no food was available." It says something about the makeup of the invited crowd when it was distasteful to even carrion eaters.

“Got Fish?” Water for the Delta - Decision - Tuesday, March 12 - Sharp Park Library, Pacifica

March 11, 2013
The CCWD--covering HMB and EG--now gets much of its domestic water from the abused Tuolumne River. For water users in the CCWD, this could be an eye-opener, exposing their responsibility for negative impacts on natural resources and the natural environment far from the coastside--and what can be done to improve the situation.

Coastside Fire Protection District candidate forum Thursday Feb 14th.

March 11, 2013
The Midcoast Community Council is also trying to schedule a candidate forum for later this month--which would be better located for those of us in the midcoast communities with no compelling connection to HMB.

What we talk about when we talk about Pescadero Marsh and Lagoon

March 01, 2013
Why is the meeting in HMB rather than Pescadero? Pescadero has several locations with the capacity of the old train depot on Higgins in HMB.

Coastside Fire Protection District candidate forum Thursday Feb 14th.

March 01, 2013
Fire districts in California with a fraction the population of HMB or the midcoast communities have ongoing independent fire districts of many years duration, thus maintaining the local control that can fit services to a location. The numbers presented by the recall and anti-recall sides in public meetings so far are incomplete and speculative, so one gets a mixture of apples and oranges set up to favor a point of view rather than a set of comprehensive facts and both short-term and long-term projections.

The Nascent Financial Crisis at Coastside Fire

August 27, 2012
Changing faces while continuing an impossible situation is not going to make it less impossible. Changing faces will not change this situation. The more you struggle in financial quicksand, the deeper you go. I do care about how bad we in our several coastside communities are getting screwed. Financially, because I have no ax to grind with the level of service we are getting--nor with the level of service we got before the consolidation. We pay tax assessments on our house the same as other property…

The Nascent Financial Crisis at Coastside Fire

July 10, 2012
Who is this "Vince Williams"? Is this the guy who blew into Moss Beach a some years back and made friends with an appointed (not elected) director of the PMFPD who was dedicated to getting rid of the district for his own reasons (and no longer lives in our area)? The fellow who advocated abandoning our local district to the scummy hegemony of HMB (due to its much larger voting population) rather than simply fix a corrupted three-person PMFPD board of the moment? The same "Vince Williams" who ran…

The Nascent Financial Crisis at Coastside Fire

July 09, 2012
Crisis politics, getting all lathered up over the momentary casts of opposing forces in what will be an ongoing scene, and throwing partial dollar figures around as if they define the entire situation and are the only relevant ones are part of what got us screwed into this consolidated, undemocratic mess in the first place. No matter how the present battle works out, no matter which camp of characters prevails, there will be other equally dire fire district crises in a few years, if not months. None…

The Nascent Financial Crisis at Coastside Fire

July 09, 2012
People in Montara and Moss Beach were already disenfranchised when we were not given the opportunity to vote on whether or not to consolidate away our local Point Montara Fire Protection District. Now we are stuck with being joined in a south-dominated fire protection/health emergency union with the larger former Half Moon Bay/El Granada District. That former district was, of course, dominated by the dug-in, doltish city politics of Half Moon Bay, "the city that doesn't know how." It still is. So,…

Why is it taking so long?

June 12, 2012
Leonard nails it. It is not the number of lanes in Pacifica where the highway is slow going in the morning and evening commute, it is intersection management--especially at Vallemar and Fassler. Widen the highway as the county and Caltrans are trying to do, and you get three-lane backups in each direction instead of two-lane backups. Because of this, people who have been dealing with Pacifica traffic for decades object to the unnecessary widening, with the damage to several businesses and other property…

Election research links. What are Coastside political issues at stake?

May 29, 2012
As a midcoaster, I found I could not vote for any of the candidates for supervisor from any of the three districts. The two running unopposed in their districts have already made (or gone along with) too many decisions or sat on their hands on too many pressing matters (yes, even relative newcomer Pine) damaging to the coastside and other unincorporated areas of San Mateo County. In the competitive district, every candidate favors a deal-breaker (such as the consolidation sledgehammer) or is so glib,…

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