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Sound Off! calls published June 23, 2010
• Supercenter not a great idea

Allowing Walmart to build a Supercenter is not in the best interest for the city's current and future development. Other retail chains will think twice about doing business here if they have to compete with Walmart. If we're to revive downtown someday with small shops and resturants building Walmart would be counterproductive. Let's give our current Walmart a face-lift and let it be.

Speaking of face-lift, 90 percent of the city's current retail lots and plazas need major renovation. Let's get these slumlords to clean house. As for the use of that land on Mitchell and Service, let's think about the kids of Ceres can benefit from its development. After all that's what attracts good families to cities. The Community Center needs to be converted to City Hall or something. What a waste of money.

• Illegal aliens are an economic crisis

I'm calling in regards to the Arizona law and the issue of providing proof of citizenship. You know, we're a biracial, multi-ethnic family. We have Hispanic roots and we're law abiding citizens of the U.S. We don't feel put off or profiled when asked to show proof of legal age to purchase alcohol. Nor are we offended when it's necessary to show proof of a valid drivers license, auto insurance or even a Social Security number to prove a legal right to work in this country. We're more than willing to comply with proof.

I think people need to wake up. Illegal immigration is an economic crisis in this country. At least in this household we chose to be a part of the solution, not the problem. So maybe people should stop asking what this country can do for them, but what they can do for their country. I know when we visit Mexico we obey their immigration laws. It's our right to expect and enforce the same standards in this country.

• Did Hanline actually take the raise?

In the May 26 Ceres Courier, it was stated in the article, "Teachers protest cuts," that our Supt. Walt Hanline accepted a $3,000 raise and an additional week of paid vacation. I, along with many other Ceres residents, would like to know if this is true. And if it is true, and if it is, why Hanline would accept this raise during these very difficult times while many teachers throughout the state are being pink slipped. Please explain.

(Editor's note: Hanline said he did receive a $4,000 pay increase based on salaries of administrators of districts the same size. Administrators are taking an 8.5 percent reduction last year. If Hanline were around next year, he would see that reduction. Last year Hanline made $185,000 last year and made $189,000 this school year.)

• The economy must be bad because...

The economy's really bad when they start stealing trash cans from the church, which is what they did at 1122 Vito Avenue this last week.

• Jeff does an outstanding job

I was calling Sound Off! to just say I think Jeff does an awesome job in reporting the facts on the Hughson City Council mess. I live in Hughson and have for many, many years. It's really sad when the local (Hughson) newspaper won't report the facts because they're afraid; they're too intimidated by the parties involved. And I got to give you credit, Jeff, you tell it like it is and we need that in Hughson. Keep up the good work. You're great!

• Hanline doesn't know what's going on

Here's a money saving idea for Ceres schools. Get rid of the attorney that's in there for bargaining and negotiations that is supposed to be doing Walt Hanline's job. He comes down here from Sacramento and they pay him mileage and time. How many hundreds of dollars have they spent on an attorney when the superintendent won't even bargain. You can't trust what he says. All he's hearing is what he hears from somebody else. How does he know what's going on if he doesn't go to the table?