John Chin tops COTECC ranking

first_imgFollowing his success at two regional tennis tournaments in as many weeks, Jamaica’s John Chin now holds the number-one spot for U14 Boys in Central America and the Caribbean combined as determined by the International Tennis Federation’s (ITF) regional governing body, COTECC (ConfederaciÛn de Tenis de CentroamÈrica y el Caribe).The 13-year-old Chin won both the singles and doubles titles at the Boys Under-14 events in Trinidad’s Trinity Cup, held last month, in Port-of-Spain. After defeating Julian Lozano of Costa Rica in three sets, he went on to cinch the doubles title with his partner, James McKenzie, of Barbados. Chin claimed the runner-up spot for the U14 singles in Barbados C.O. Williams Junior International Competition a week before and won the doubles event with his partner, Alejandro Licea, of El Salvador.WILD CARDChin’s current ranking may possibly earn him a wild card by COTECC to participate in this year’s Mexican Tennis Federation’s ‘Abiertos 100’, a series of four tournaments held this June to August, that grants the most points in their U14 national ranking.Trained by Ryan Russell of the Russell Tennis Academy, Chin, an eighth-grade student at the Heinz Simonitsch School, receives continuous support from his principal, Diane Girvan, and all his teachers, who ensure that he stays on top of his academic work when participating in overseas tournaments. Tennis Jamaica, the island’s national association for the sport, also provides valuable support and encouragement to the young junior.last_img read more

Let Us, in Faith, Proceed with the Elections

first_imgLiberians are people of great faith.   Remember, the first thing the Pioneers did upon arrival on January 7, 1822 was to name the place they landed  “Providence Island,” in thanksgiving to God for bringing then safely across the Atlantic Ocean and founding them a home in the land of their ancestors. Their second historic action was building a church, on Ashmun Street, naming it after the Island, Providence Baptist Church.We said in a recent editorial that it was only by the grace of God that Liberia  was able to survive the territorial aggrandizement of two imperial powers, Great Britain and France, which chopped off our territory from EVERY side, leaving us with a meager 43,000 square miles.Remember, too, President Daniel E. Howard’s immediate reaction when following the outbreak of World War I,  Germany bombed the French Cable on Front (now Sao Boso) Street, Snapper Hill, Monrovia.  President Howard immediately commanded the people to gather in their churches to pray for God’s deliverance, and all churches to toll their bells.  God answered their prayers and that storm passed miraculously over us.The Daily Observer has over the years constantly reminded our people about many other Godly interventions in our history.  We have not forgotten the women in their white dresses and head ties who gathered daily, in rain or sunshine, near the Spriggs Payne Airfield on Tubman Boulevard, to “Pray the devil back to Hell,” as depicted by the film that resulted from that divine undertaking.  God again answered prayer and soon, Charles Taylor, one of our most ruthless tyrants, whose war killed over 250,000 and completely destroyed our infrastructure, was gone, gone gone! Our people are now living this very moment in faith, when in March this year our country was attacked by the most deadly virus we have ever known—Ebola.  Our people started dropping dead everywhere, over 2,500 to date.Here again, the Liberian people, rallied by the Liberian Council of Churches, gathered in their churches and homes –and again on that same Spriggs Payne field, as well as in their mosques, and started praying.These prayers, together with the belated but robust response from our government and the international community, have led to a significant receding (retreating, diminishing) of the virus.  It was Jesus who said that faith can move mountains.  We, therefore, submit that if faith can move Ebola from amongst us, faith definitely can empower us to go through these Senatorial elections which the National Elections Commission (NEC) has scheduled for December 16, 2014.  We commend NEC Chairman Jerome Kokoyah and his fellow Commissioners for their courage and faith in calling for the elections to go ahead.  We are thankful that in consideration of this terrible health crisis that already delayed these elections, NEC has put into place certain safeguards to prevent touching and intermingling among the election crowds.  We are sure that there will be chlorinated buckets in EVERY polling booth, where people can wash their hands BEFORE entering to vote.  We pray also that NEC will this time undertake massive publicity, to ensure massive voter turnout. We also laud the Legislature, the Senate and the House of Representatives, for their forthrightness and optimism in granting their approval for the elections to proceed.  We call on former Senator Blamo Nelson and defeated presidential aspirant Simeon Freeman to stop being men of little faith.  Just put on “the armor of faith” and let us all go out and vote on Tuesday, December 16, get this necessary constitutional process behind us and move forward.We further call on the electorate, to turn out en masse and vote!     One last but most important thing:  Many reading this editorial, especially foreigners but even us Liberians, are tempted to ask, “Why with all this faith the Daily Observer is claiming Liberians have, yet she remains, though the oldest African Republic, among the most backward?   Thanks for the question.  The answer is simple:  We have faith in God, but not love for one another.  This, we confess, is a terrible, ungodly contradiction.  For the Bible puts the ancient question, “How can you love God whom you have not seen, and hate your brother, whom you see every day?”In Liberia, we prefer to give the foreigner EVERYTHING—land, minerals, business opportunities, contracts, yes, everything—and leave nothing for our own people.  This has been the case with successive administrations, beginning with President W.V.S. Tubman’s.We plead once again with ALL Liberians to change the way we do things.  Here again, we plead: Let us start loving and caring for one another.  When this happens, buttressed by our faith, God will be pleased and our country will start growing and developing by leaps and bounds!  Not before then, we’re afraid.  Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Population Increase Impedes Africa’s Poverty Reduction

first_imgA recent report published by the World Bank has revealed that though Sub-Saharan Africa is making steady progress in health and education, population growth is seriously affecting poverty reduction.In a release dispatched to our reporter, the World Bank quoting the Global Monitoring Report released earlier this month noted that 347 million people are living in extreme poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa this year.The report also indicates that 388 million people or 43 % of all people living in Sub-Saharan Africa live in extreme poverty in 2012. This figure, according to the report, is the result of a decrease of 5 million poor people in 2011.The report titled, “Poverty in a Rising Africa,” was released in Ghana at a high-level event commemorating End Poverty Day, which was attended by World BankGroup President Dr Jim Yong Kim, government leaders, and civil society partners.The report is therefore calling for much better measurement of poverty, noting that data gaps make it extremely difficult for policy makers to target programs for the poor.The World Bank President has in this regard pledged to work with developing countries and international partners to conduct household surveys once every three years in each of the 78 poorest countries in ensuring that proper data are gathered to help decision makers make the best decisions in reducing poverty in their respective countries.This initiative is expected to be fully launched by 2020, and is estimated to cost U$300 million every three years.“Africa’s economy is on the rise, but to avoid bypassing vulnerable people – whether in rural areas or in fragile states – we must improve how we measure human progress. Better data will tell us whether we’re delivering effective programs that will help end extreme poverty by 2030 and boost shared prosperity among the poorest,” said Dr. Kim, World Bank Group President. Kim traveled to Ghana on Friday to draw attention to the country’s record in the past two decades in cutting poverty by more than half, from 53 percent in 1991 to 21 percent in 2012. The report finds that progress in ending poverty in all its forms has varied greatly across countries and population groups, with the levels of achievement remaining challengingly low.Africa posted the slowest rate of poverty reduction of all major developing regions, with the share of people living in extreme poverty (less than US$1.90 a day) declining only slightly, from 56% in 1990 to 43% in 2012. But since 2012, extreme poverty fell to a projected 35% in 2015 in the region, based on the World Bank’s new poverty line of $1.90 a day. Globally, according to Bank estimates released earlier this month, the percentage of people living in extreme poverty will likely fall to under 10% for the first time, to 9.6% this year.Despite progress, more than 100 million more Africans lived in extreme poverty in 2012 compared to 1990, with at least 20% of the population estimated to be chronically poor. Africa’s extreme poor live mainly in rural areas (home to 65-70% of the population), while the highest levels of inequality are recorded in Southern Africa, where six of the world’s 10 most unequal countries are located.Disparities among Africans are accentuated by where they live (urban or rural areas); whether they live in a stable or conflict-affected or fragile country; and possibly their gender (limited evidence on household poverty shows women are at a disadvantage). The report further states that while intergenerational mobility in education and occupation has improved, rates are still low. Lack of economic mobility perpetuates both poverty and inequality in the next generation.Conflict and violence are said to be among the most important factors slowing economic growth or even reversing development gains.However, while the number of large scale conflicts and civil wars has declined, the report said criminality, drug trafficking, terrorism, and piracy at sea are on the rise. The effects of conflict are often long-lasting, as in Burundi, where the share of households living in extreme poverty rose from 21% before that country’s civil war to 64% in 2007.(Sent in from the World Bank office in Washington, D.C., with introduction and added materials by Joaquin Sendolo)Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Patterson denies being contacted by regional authorities

first_imgCharity Market sunken wharfPublic Infrastructure Minister David Patterson has said the authorities of Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) never contacted him in relation to the Charity Market Wharf that has sunk more than 6 inches in the past year.However, Region Two Chairman Devanand Ramdatt is maintaining that he had written the minister, informing him of the state of the wharf and requesting intervention of the Ministry of Public Infrastructure (MPI).Engineers have declared that the Charity Market Wharf has sunk more than sixPublic Infrastructure Minister David Pattersoninches and currently poses a serious risk to life and limb, but vendors utilizing the facility are refusing to relocate until the Public Infrastructure Ministry mobilizes a team to effect urgent repairs on the wharf.In a previous interview Region 2 Chairman Devanand Ramdatt and Vice Chairwoman Nandranie Coonjah related that they had contacted the MPI for assistance, but were yet to receive a response.In a telephone interview with the Guyana Times, Minister Patterson said, “TheRegion Two Chairman Devanand RamdatCharity Market is not the responsibility of the Ministry of Public Infrastructure; it is the responsibility of the Region. I have been reading the news, and no approach has been made to my ministry. We highlighted to them quite a while ago that it is an area of concern.“I don’t know how the ministry’s name is being called now. I’ve seen reports that the Chairman said he had written to me, and I don’t think that is quite true, but it is a regional problem. The Charity Market is and always has been under the control of the Region. We do the sea defence. The wharf is the (responsibility of the) region, not the ministry,” he explained.Ramdatt, meanwhile, maintains that the minister was made aware of the situation,Some of the rotting piles supporting the wharfand that technical officers from the MPI had even been dispatched to the region some time ago.“How is it that his technical staff was here? How is it that the matter is engaging the Sea Defence Board, which comes under his responsibility? As far as I know, wharfs and so on come under the responsibility of that ministry,” Ramdatt noted.Vice Chairwoman of the Region, Nandranie Coonjah, has said the Charity Market Wharf has been engaging the attention of the region’s Works Committee since August of 2017, and that is the reason for the initial study on the wharf. She explained that the Region 2 Engineer was engaged, and he and a team ventured below the wharf and discovered the rapid deterioration.While under there, it was observed that there were large cracks on the floor, several boards were rotting, and most of the piles beneath the wharf were determined to be no longer able to support the structure; thus the solid concrete wharf is sitting precariously on a few remaining piles, and the prognosis is that it would likely collapse.Vendors have reported that they are aware of the dangers posed by the state of the wharf, but they maintain that they “need a solid plan” before they can relocate their businesses. They are also waiting on the MPI to officially commence work on the wharf and remove them from the spaces they currently occupy.The structure is 32 years old and requires urgent attention, since over 30 persons utilize it for vending, and countless others for other purposes. It is also a parking area for many persons using their boats to traverse the Pomeroon River.last_img read more

City boosts some speed limits

first_img85 percent of drivers are going. Those figures are then used to set a speed limit. Otherwise, any tickets can be challenged and overtured in court. “It looks like you’re having 85 percent of the people tell us what’s safe,” Councilman Joe Vinatieri said. “What happens if 85 percent are wrong?” he asked. “The frustration is that it doesn’t make any difference. The Legislature has already decided that. I find that very frustrating. In essence our hands are somewhat tied.” The affected streets are main roadways and not residential streets, officials said. Lt. Wyatt Powell said the 85th percentile was set because studies have shown that those numbers of people drive at safe speed. WHITTIER – City Council members on Tuesday approved increasing speed limits on 17 stretches of streets here, but they didn’t like it. The council was told that if they didn’t approve the faster speed limits, the police wouldn’t be able to use radar to enforce the law. Under state law, the city must conduct a speed survey every five years and use the information to set speed limits. The survey measures how fast “It’s the other 10 to 15 percent of the people that contribute to collisions,” Powell said. Council members were most concerned about the raising the speed limit from 35 mph to 40 mph on Beverly Boulevard from Magnolia to Pickering avenues. They were particularly concerned about the curve where advisory signs tell drivers to slow down to 25 mph. As a result, the council directed staff to increase enforcement in that area even as they were raising the speed limit. “I don’t think people understand what is safe,” Councilman Bob Henderson said. “Look at Beverly Boulevard. Look at how many people we scrape off of trees and the retaining post.” Powell told the council that if these new limits weren’t approved, the police would be limited to two ways of enforcing the law. Officers could estimate the speed, but that only works if the driver was going much faster than the limit, such as 50 mph in a residential area where the limit was 25 mph, Powell said. “The second method is by pacing,” he said. “We line up besides them, follow them for a period, making sure we’re not gaining on them and check our speedometer.” But radar is the most effective, he said. “Like it or not, the Police Department will be handcuffed when it comes to speed enforcement,” he said, referring to what would happen if radar couldn’t be used. The vote was unanimous on 16 of the 17 streets. Vinatieri voted no on raising the speed limit from 25 mph to 30 mph on Beverly Drive from Davidson Drive to Pickering Avenue. (562)698-0955, Ext. 3022 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Sports Wire: Morrison, free of HIV, coming back

first_imgFormer WBO heavyweight champion Tommy Morrison is staging a comeback, saying Tuesday that a positive HIV test that ended his career more than a decade ago was inaccurate. “I’m negative and I’ve always been negative and that should be the end of it,” Morrison said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. West Virginia state athletic commissioner Steve Allred said Tuesday he approved Morrison’s participation in the fight after reviewing medical records and consulting with the Association of Boxing Commissions’ medical review committee. Allred said confidentiality laws prevent him from discussing Morrison’s medical history or the records he reviewed. West Virginia does not have mandatory blood testing for boxers. “I assure you that West Virginia is doing due diligence to make sure everyone who steps into the ring is healthy,” Allred said. Morrison (46-3) and Castle (4-2) square off in one of seven bouts scheduled at Mountaineer. Bob Arum of Top Rank Inc. is promoting Thursday’s card. He told the Press-Telegram on Tuesday that either Morrison was misdiagnosed, or the HIV virus disappeared. “We checked with a number of infectious disease specialists who say that they are finding more and more situations with people with or without treatment who had HIV, it disappeared,” Arum said. “It’s in the medical literature. In any event, there is not a trace.” Morrison took what Arum termed a $3,000 test under the supervision of the Arizona State Athletic Commission. Morrison won the WBO title in 1993 by outpointing George Foreman. He lost it later that year. Morrison, who was featured in the movie “Rocky V,” also served a couple of years in an Arkansas prison on drug and weapons charges. It was Oscar De La Hoya’s turn to take the podium, and he could hardly get a word in. Floyd Mayweather Jr. was busy yelling back at rowdy fans, posing for pictures and doing everything he could to annoy De La Hoya. It’s The Golden Boy against the Pretty Boy – and, boy, what a scene it was. “This guy has been under my skin for a while,” De La Hoya said Tuesday at the Waldorf-Astoria. It was the first stop of an 11-city promotional tour in advance of their highly anticipated super welterweight title fight on May 5 in Las Vegas. “He’s a little brat,” De La Hoya added with a smile. “I’m going to teach him a lesson.” Bears tab Babich The Chicago Bears promoted Bob Babich from linebackers coach to defensive coordinator, one day after the team announced it would not retain Ron Rivera. Babich, in his fourth year with the Bears, also coached with Lovie Smith in St. Louis and at the University of Tulsa. He was the Rams’ linebackers coach when Smith was defensive coordinator. At Tulsa, he coached the tight ends while Smith worked with linebackers. “It was so long ago. We were just young coaches trying to come up through the ranks,” Babich said. Outside linebacker Shaun Phillips signed a six-year contract with the San Diego Chargers. The deal keeps Phillips from becoming a restricted free agent. Phillips became a starter after Steve Foley was shot by an off-duty police officer eight days before the season opener. Phillips had a career-high 11 sacks, contributing to the Chargers’ NFL-high of 61. He was second among NFL linebackers, behind only teammate Shawne Merriman, who led the NFL with 17. Indianapolis Colts tight end Dallas Clark was kicked out of a high school girls basketball game after making “inappropriate” comments to a referee officiating the game. Clark, a former University of Iowa football player, was asked to leave the gymnasium during a game Saturday between Twin River Valley of Bode, where he attended high school, and Southeast Webster-Grand of Burnside. Mike Jorgensen, Southeast Webster-Grand superintendent, confirmed that Clark was asked to leave, but said there wasn’t a major disturbance. “I didn’t know it happened until after the game,” he said. “It was not a real explosive thing.” Indianapolis Colts running back Dominic Rhodes faces a drunken driving charge after state troopers arrested him Tuesday. Rhodes, 28, was pulled over about 3 a.m. driving a GMC truck 81 mph in a 55-mph zone on Interstate 65 in Indianapolis’ far northwest side, Indiana State Police spokesman 1st Sgt. Dave Bursten said. “It was a normal, run-of-the-mill drunk driving arrest,” Bursten said. Tennis roundup Defending champion Tommy Haas defeated Vince Spadea 6-4, 6-1 Tuesday night in the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships, and Venus Williams advanced with her second win following a four-month layoff. Spadea beat Haas in the quarterfinals of the Delray Beach tournament earlier this month, but lost his serve in the opening game of the second set, one of three breaks for Haas in the set, including the final game. Both recorded six aces, but three of Haas’ came in the fourth game of the second set, and Spadea didn’t win a game the rest of the way in the 56-minute match. In the women’s Cellular South Cup, Williams continued her comeback from a sprained wrist with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark. “I think this match was definitely better,” Williams said after her second win in the tournament. “I definitely had a lot of good streaks of play.” Fifth-seeded Jelena Jankovic of Serbia beat Aravane Rezai of France 6-1, 6-2 to advance to the second round of the Dubai Open. Second-seeded Tommy Robredo and third-seeded Ivan Ljubicic advanced to the second round of the ABN Amro. Fourth-seeded Tomas Berdych, however, was knocked out after losing to Mikhail Youzhny of Russia 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-1. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!center_img The 38-year-old will face John Castle in a four-round fight Thursday at Mountaineer Racetrack and Gaming Resort in West Virginia. “The rug was yanked out from under my feet by a misdiagnosis,” he said of a 1996 test that declared him HIV positive. “All I want to do is fight. … It’s unfinished business.” last_img read more

City weighs cutting employee benefits

first_imgCostly retirement packages and lifelong health care coverage that currently doesn’t cost employees anything will bleed the city’s budget if a change is not made, Chi said. But their efforts have been met with resistance from Councilwoman Margaret Clark, who speculates that employees are being scared into retirement in fear of having their benefits taken away from them. “I’m very concerned about what’s happening in our city as far as the restructuring to take away benefits from our employees,” said Clark, who attended a benefits negotiation meeting Tuesday intended for employees. She was the only council person who attended. Council members are treated as full-time city employees under city law and receive the same benefits. Former Councilman Jay Imperial, who stepped down last month after 29 years, will continue to be compensated at $1,746 per month for the rest of his life. The monthly allowance includes $333 for health benefits. ROSEMEAD – The city is looking for ways to cut employee benefits because of a drain on the budget. City officials have been meeting with employees and informing them of possible changes to their benefits and retirement packages, although nothing has been finalized or proposed to the City Council. Estimates show that the city will have to pay up to $12 million out of the it’s coffers for the employee packages and retirement plans, said Oliver Chi, deputy city manager. “We don’t think we can afford it,” Chi said. “If we’re being fiscally responsible, we have to come up with a plan that will cost the city less.” Low, who has been on the council for just over a month, said she thinks the benefits the city offers to its employees are unusually generous. In her 20 years of work experience, this is the first time that Low won’t have to contribute to health benefits. She said she was also surprised that all retired employees receive full health benefits for life without any contribution. The city is proposing a “cafeteria plan,” which gives $1,200 monthly to each full-time employee. This money could be used to purchase health, dental and vision insurance, or can be taken as cash or deferred compensation. The health package now covers the full cost of any health care plan of the employees choice. Other changes include adding 10 more holiday hours, an increase of vacation days from eight to 10, floating holidays will go from 10 to 20 hours, the introduction of paternity leave and tuition reimbursement. Among the biggest changes will be that retirement health will be eliminated. The council is expected to discuss the changes in employee benefits in May, and is still awaiting the cost analysis results of the proposed package. Councilwoman Polly (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2477 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

North Peace trails revamped thanks to federal funding

first_imgAn improved sign at Redfern Lake Trail will also be completed as a result of a $5,000 investment from the same program“Having recreational trails is an important part of life here in northeastern B.C. and this investment will ensure that hard-working taxpayers have a place to enjoy the great outdoors,” Prince George-Peace River MP Bob Zimmer writes.The initiative, a partnership between the Natural Trails Coalition and the federal government, will provide a total of $10 million “to help expand and rehabilitate Canada’s snowmobile, all-terrain vehicle and non-motorized trial system.”- Advertisement -“These additional funds of $10 million from the federal government will ensure the revitalization of recreational trails across our country and provide individuals and families with the opportunity to enjoy quality outdoor infrastructure and continue to live active and healthy lives,” Jo-Anne Farquhar, President of the National Trails Coalition Board of Directors writes.”Funds were initially handed out in 2014 and are expected to continue into 2016.last_img read more

Fort St John RCMP look to return recovered items to rightful owners

first_imgOn November 12, RCMP received a report of a group of individuals wearing dark clothing standing around what appeared to be a pile of tires, in the area of 96 Street and 98A Avenue. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Fort St. John RCMP are looking to return a couple of recovered stolen items to the rightful owners. For any of the listed stolen items, the RCMP say the owner must provide a description, colour, make, model, serial number or proof of purchase in order to have the items returned. If you have any information regarding these items, you are being asked to call the Fort St. John RCMP at 250-787-8100.Advertisementcenter_img Police attended the area and located five tires on rims but the individuals were gone.  All tires and rims are of the same brand. – Advertisement -Then on November 19, RCMP received information which led to the seizure of a stolen snowblower. last_img read more

Council takes traffic hot seat

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESanta Anita opens winter meet Saturday with loaded card The Dorothy extension is being built by KB Home for another project north of Brookfield Homes’ $100 million development, The Keystone. The Santa Clarita City Council has the final say. Momentum is building in the contingent from the Dorothy Street neighborhood, including some who appeared at a Jan. 17 city Planning Commission meeting but were cautioned against speaking out on the Ermine issue because the public hearing on the project was closed Nov. 15. They turned in petitions bearing about 239 signatures and voiced frustration at not being officially notified about an issue that directly affects them. Some residents asked review of policy on notices. A code requires notice signs to be posted in a 1,000-foot radius from proposed projects, and they largely live outside that radius although their street will absorb traffic from the development. In January 2005, the code was amended to increase the notice area from 500 feet to 1,000 feet. “We receive phone calls and inquiries every day about projects occurring in the city from concerned residents not in the immediate noticing (area,)” city Planning Manager Lisa Hardy said. “We add them to our mailing list to be sure they are notified of upcoming meetings. In this particular case, the applicant made an effort independent of the city to engage the larger Whites Canyon neighborhood.” The residents say they do not oppose the Dorothy extension. They will urge council members to set aside the commission’s recommendation on Ermine and, instead, heed city traffic engineers’ advice to extend Ermine and reduce congestion on three feeder streets into the neighborhood. In October, senior traffic engineer Ian Pari said Steinway Street “more than any other” needs to have some relief. Traffic studies show more than 4,500 vehicles a day travel that residential street. SANTA CLARITA – A developer has jumped from the hot seat but might be replaced there by City Council members when opposing camps of Canyon Country residents vie for support on whether their dead-end streets will be extended to serve the project. Santa Clarita planning commissioners have recommended approval of a 499-home development in Plum Canyon. Under pressure from residents of Ermine Street – initially slated to be extended to serve the new project – the commission agreed to close their street and force traffic to other outlets. Now residents from Dorothy Street are angry because their neighborhood street will be extended to Golden Valley Road – an emerging city highway – and they want Ermine to share the load. “The burden of traffic they don’t want to join in with, they will join on our street,” said Chris Austin, an eight-year Dorothy Street resident. Pari has said residents perceive a diminished quality of life if more than 2,000 vehicles a day travel along residential streets. Though extending Ermine would mean more cars – from 80 to possibly 2,000 a day – that plan makes sense overall, Pari said in November. Traffic engineers and planners will attend when the council takes on the issue, Heather Waldstein, an associate planner, said. Steinway resident Bill Arens plans to alert the council to his neighbors’ concerns before the meeting so they have time to consider the information. “We’re not trying to hurt them (Ermine residents), but why should we shoulder all the load?” he said. Councilman Bob Kellar said he is looking forward to getting “up to speed on the traffic patterns involved. “I am always interested in getting the Planning Commission’s perspective on matters,” he said. “On a general basis, I’m in alignment with the decision of the Planning Commission. There are exceptions to that as well.” The project has not yet been placed on the council’s agenda. Mayor Laurene Weste said she needs to go out and walk the property before reaching a decision. “When you’re impacting an existing neighborhood, you really have to look at all the impacts that all the different options cause,” she said. City officials have discretion over projects within city limits, but some issues caused by growing pains stem from projects outside those boundaries. The KB project is outside the city. Ermine’s counterpart in Saugus is Benz Road, a residential street that became a highway when Copper Hill road opened to Bouquet Canyon Road, a major route for city traffic. Benz now handles 3,300 cars a day. Yi is looking at ways to ease traffic on Benz. Yi had proposed installing signs to limit peak drive-time turns on Benz and adjacent streets for a four-month trial period. If the approach failed, a back-up plan called for further restricting permissible turns. Kellar said no matter what decision the council arrives at with Ermine or Benz, some folks will end up being disappointed. Malcolm Dunn, a school crossing guard at Benz Road and Alaminos Drive, said he sees plenty of rolling stops. Sheriff’s deputies frequently monitor Benz now, a road they identify as problematic, said Detective Anthony Arnold. Benz resident Tony Natoli said for decades he and his neighbors had looked forward to Copper Hill’s opening, but now they’re wondering. “What we need to do is not make Benz a desirable cut-through.” Natoli’s take on Benz may resonate with his cross-town neighbors. “We all have to think beyond my house, my block,” he said, noting restrictions on his street could increase traffic for his neighbors on other streets. Judy O’Rourke, (661) 257-5255 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more