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Sound Off! calls published August 25, 2010
• It's still government waste!

Jeff, please tell me there was some kind of misprint concerning insurance premiums paid on behalf of councilmembers. $938.11 per month for part-time councilmembers is outrageous. That is nearly double their pay. Don't these people and/or their spouses have full-time jobs with insurance benefits? Are they doubling up on their coverage, which would be a waste? Aren't there any insurance agencies that would like to offer a lower rate if given a chance?

It's on a small scale but this is still government waste.

• Try being a coach for the Ceres Saints

I was charged over $100 to become a coach and I found it outrageous the price he was charging to become a Ceres Saints coach. Does anyone know why they charge such an outrageous fee to become a volunteer coach?

• Worrier about cans needs to get a life

I'm just calling to respond to this guy who is more concerned about the garbage cans being out on the streets than anybody else. I think what the city needs to do is hire him to go around and make sure everyone gets their garbage cans put away. Are you kidding me? This guy needs to get a life.

• Most against Don Pedro Road as an access

The attendees at the Walmart (Mitchell Ranch Shopping Center) open house included more than those living next to the proposed Supercenter site. Some attendees were for the project while I would say a majority were opposed to it. I had not made up my mind until I started speaking and listening to other attendees. The site plans need to be reworked so Don Pedro Road isn't accessible for big trucks.

• We have to stop murderous gangsters

I just have an opinion about that poor man who was killed, that Ernie Hernandez. It's disgraceful what the gangs are doing if this was an initiation or something. To kill that poor defenseless man was horrible. Something needs to be done about the gangs. I know the police have their hands full but these families are in denial about their children belonging to gangs is a big mistake on their part. It really is.

• Some trash cans are out for repairs

I'm going to sound off to the "Somebody needs to crack down" person with the bad language. Look it. If someone breaks your garbage can, the person emptying the garbage or whatever, you have to leave your garbage can out in the street for them to come and fix it. My garbage can has been out in the street for two weeks waiting for the person to come and fix it. The city of Hughson told me to leave it out at the curb, not to put it away.

So all this anger about somebody needing to crack down and pay a fine because their garbage cans are at the curb, maybe you're just sounding off for nothing. Maybe you need to get a good hobby so you're not so mad about garbage cans out on the street. There's plenty of volunteer work to be done.

What's ugly is the growing number of heroine and crack addicts and children involved in these situations and the growing number of prostitutes and destitute people. This is what is a blight on our community.

(Editor's note: The caller was reflecting on garbage cans in Ceres being left on the street on non-collection day, which is a violation of law. Most all cans being left on the streets are not awaiting repairs.)

• No secret funding for Benziger's ideas

Here is an answer demanding to know who is funding Jeff Benziger's message and that it had better not be the city. Well, now this is not a big news flash but under his name is written the word, "editor." The Courier pays him as a writer. Yes, he earns his living writing words. How wonderful. He has chosen to live his life doing something he's skilled at and receives money for and I appreciate his writing. I especially enjoyed "Ceres is run with more common sense than Bell." Very good article.

There's not a lot of papers where people can actually read articles that hit home and resonate in their own belief systems as well. The American people get tired of reading left-wing media dominated papers. Let's have this one paper and have the editor without a lot of hoopla that there must be a conspiracy involved or a hidden power structure funneling money into his secret Swiss account for his writings.