Following up on my Wednesday column, Friday’s has more on the Chino Valley Unified School District controversy regarding board member Andrew Cruz. My mistake: Although there was no immediate response, the board president fired back at him a minute later in the meeting. Also, it turns out that Cruz’s comment about having his rainwater tested for chemicals probably relates to a conspiracy theory about so-called “chemtrails.” For those uninterested in all this — do such people exist? — there are three Valley Vignettes and a rundown of recent posts here.
Wednesday’s column starts with the latest from the Chino Valley Unified school board, where one member made the TV news for a nine-minute monologue at a recent meeting on a multitude of hot-button topics. From there, I’ve got three Culture Corner items (two involving Debbie Reynolds — how about that?), two examples of the 909 in the news and even more.
Wednesday’s column breaks some news about Dennis Yates, the mayor of Chino, who plans to retire from the City Council when his term ends in 2016. He was first elected in 1992. The council is remarkably stable, without a new member since 2001. But that will change with Yates’ retirement.
In a foray to a Chino City Council meeting, I cover the news that the city is buying the former Superior Court building across from City Hall. With the entire Civic Center in city hands, this could be the first step in selling the whole thing off and relocating. I tell the story in Friday’s column. Above, what you see when you look through the glassed front entry. I assume the five framed photos show the Board of Supervisors of 2012.
What’s your city’s population? New population numbers are out, and they show Chino is (as the headline says) among the state’s fastest-growing by percentage and raw numbers. But you can check on all the other Inland Valley cities too. Also: more news from Chino, two Culture Corner items and a plug for this blog, all in Sunday’s column.
A Buddhist temple on the southeast corner of Central Avenue and Francis Street has been under construction for at least five years, reader Helen Cosner points out in asking me when it might be done (if ever).
City spokeswoman Monica Gutierrez said construction has come in stops and starts as the temple’s financing allows. Public improvements and the burying of utility lines are the last pieces and the temple is expected to be complete this summer.
I remember this complex from visits to the barbecue restaurant across the street, which closed in 2011. I thought it was a stalled office park. In Chino last week, I pulled over to take a fresh look. It looks pretty complete from the street, so sprawling that it’s hard to get it all into one photograph, and with an impressive entry gate. If your view is right, you can see the top of a Buddha statue. Makes me want to see inside.
Having enjoyed myself last month, I returned to a Chino City Council meeting this week and was not disappointed. It was a relaxed, humorous session. See Friday’s column for my account.
Karen Comstock is the new police chief in Chino. She’s not only Chino’s first female police chief, but the first in any Inland Valley city. She’s the subject of my Friday column.
Above, she’s seen in the police station’s museum, filled with memorabilia of the 1926-established department’s history. Below, she admires a handmade banner created by her alma mater, Don Lugo High, which was on display outside her office.
Wanting a change, I skipped Tuesday’s Ontario City Council meeting to check out Chino’s. I was rewarded for my efforts. Sunday’s column tells the tale.
You probably forgot, I almost did myself, but I asked readers recently (okay, three months ago) if they knew of a Great Wall of Chino. No one was more surprised than me to learn there is one. Wednesday’s column goes into detail. Above is one view of the wall’s end, or maybe its start, stretching east from Central Avenue into infinity, shot by reader Linda Takeuchi; below is a view almost two miles east, closer to Euclid Avenue, which I shot.
To the comparisons of the Chino and China Great Walls, I can add two more: Neither is visible from space, despite myths to the contrary concerning China’s, and also that while hundreds of thousands of people are believed to have died building China’s, Chino’s did not cost any lives. Whew.