The fields around Watsonville produce more than half a billion dollars in berries every year. By the end of the season, in November, the raspberry vines have been cut back and the strawberry fields plowed under. At the Buena Vista Migrant Center, home to 104 farmworker families for six months a year, that means it’s time to move out, but more and more families are giving second thought to migrating twice a year.
Pacific Grove is trying to turn a potential problem into an opportunity. The ocean water that sits off its shore is one of 34 special environmental areas along the California coast that restricts the discharge of storm water. The city believes it has come up with a way to not only solve the problem of storm water runoff, but save some money at the same time.
The Carmel Mission Basilica is a 200 year old adobe that is small and simply constructed. In its day this was headquarters for a string of missions that stretched from Monterey to the Mexican border. The man who established the Mission system was a short elderly Franciscan Friar named Junipero Serra.
Outside the Basilica, CSU Monterey Bay archeology professor and Serra scholar Dr. Ruben Mendoza stands in the church’s courtyard. The mission now sits in the fashionable city of Carmel-by-the-Sea. But in the seventeenth century it was a different story.
In the city of Salinas, gang violence is a persistent problem that is killing dozens of young people each year. Some city leaders, including the police chief, says the rest of the city suffers, too, from the economic consequence of living in a place where people think you could get shot just for walking down the street. The chief, a council member and other city leaders want to change that, by hiring more police officers to bring down the violence on the streets.
Monterey County still has some 7000 absentee ballots that need to be counted, but it appears voters have rejected two opposing initiatives on Tuesday’s ballot. Measures M and K dealt with the future of some 500 acres on the former Fort Ord.
Don Jensen, Larry Thornley and Louis Distefinio straddle their bikes along Giggling Road on the former Fort Ord. They are all seniors and have been ridding here for years. Larry Thornley started in 1998.
“When I first came out here, there were wild pigs,” he says.