Sunday, February 16, 2020

#47 / R We Ready To Vote (YES) on Measure R?

A friend who saw my blog posting about the recall elections currently underway in the City of Santa Cruz sent me a follow-up inquiry: What do you think about Measure R? Well, I do have "view" on Measure R, too. I am strongly in favor of Measure R. In fact, being one of those early voter types, I have already cast my ballot, and I voted YES on R.

As far as I am concerned, Cabrillo College is one of the local institutions that has helped make Santa Cruz County into a very special place, indeed. I speak from personal experience. My entire family has benefitted from the education that Cabrillo College provides. Lots of other families can say the exact same thing! Cabrillo is, as the name states, a  true "community" college, and it makes education available to all of us, to every one of us - and at every stage of our lives.

Cabrillo is where I learned Spanish, when I was almost fifty years old, and Cabrillo is where my son took courses he needed to advance his career. My daughter got a very good start in life in Cabrillo's outstanding Early Childhood Education preschool. Her son, my grandson, will soon be in high school, and he is already planning to take some courses at Cabrillo, to get him beyond high school, and ready for a four-year university. I am now teaching in the Legal Studies Program at UCSC, and I am very much impressed by the diverse and motivated students that Cabrillo College is sending up to that City on a Hill!

Here is the problem that some find with Measure R: it will cost us money! If you think you can get everything for free on the Internet (even a bogus education at PragerU), maybe the fact that it will cost us money will seem like a real strike against Measure R. The amount of money being requested will mean less than 2% of the average total of our property tax bills, but Measure R will cost us money. This is not a deal killer for me!

I come from parents who taught me that "you get what you pay for," and that has, in fact, been my personal experience. If we want to continue and build upon the wonderful work that Cabrillo College has done, and is doing in this community, we need to continue to invest. In the case of Measure R, I think we get a lot for our investment. The fact sheets I have seen indicate that the funds produced by Measure R will not only rennovate and upgrade many aging campus facilities, specifically including the Library, but that these funds will also let Cabrillo build a new science building on the main campus and a new public service training center in Watsonville.

Deciding to borrow money (and that's what a bond act is) always requires some thought. If you borrow money and don't invest it wisely, you are worse off than before. You don't have much of value to show for your money, and you're deeper in debt. I think that investing in our premier institution of community education is an investment worth making, and that is why I voted "YES" on Measure R.

YES on "R." That's my view about that one!

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