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may 16-22, 2024 montereycountynow.com LOCAL & INDEPENDENT amazon again eyes salinas 8 | slow road to big sur 10 | a fresh take on local history 28 Joe Kapp went from a childhood in Salinas to the pantheon of American football. A new, posthumous version of his memoir adds more to the story. p. 16 By David Schmalz Local Legend

2 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY may 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com may 16-22, 2024 • ISSUE #1868 • Established in 1988 Elizabeth Slay (iPhone 15 Pro Max) Bees are extra busy in the springtime, like this one seen on a radiant sunflower in a Marina garden. Monterey County photo of the week Send Etc. submissions to etcphoto@montereycountynow.com; please include caption and camera info. On the cover: Joe Kapp spent his formative years in Alisal, and went on to become an NFL quarterback who never backed down from a bully. Cover photo: Courtesy of Minnesota Vikings etc. Copyright © 2024 by Milestone Communications Inc. 668 Williams Ave., Seaside, California 93955 (telephone 831-394-5656). All rights reserved. Monterey County Weekly, the Best of Monterey County and the Best of Monterey Bay are registered trademarks. No person, without prior permission from the publisher, may take more than one copy of each issue. Additional copies and back issues may be purchased for $1, plus postage. Mailed subscriptions: $300 yearly, prepaid. The Weekly is an adjudicated newspaper of Monterey County, court decree M21137. The Weekly assumes no responsibility for unsolicited materials. Visit our website at http://www.montereycountynow. com. Audited by CVC. Founder & CEO Bradley Zeve bradley@montereycountynow.com (x103) Publisher Erik Cushman erik@montereycountynow.com (x125) Editorial editor Sara Rubin sara@montereycountynow.com (x120) associate editor Erik Chalhoub ec@montereycountynow.com (x135) features editor Dave Faries dfaries@montereycountynow.com (x110) Staff Writer Celia Jiménez celia@montereycountynow.com (x145) Staff Writer Pam Marino pam@montereycountynow.com (x106) Staff Writer Agata Pope¸da (x138) aga@montereycountynow.com Staff Writer David Schmalz david@montereycountynow.com (x104) Staff photographer Daniel Dreifuss daniel@montereycountynow.com (x102) Newsletter PRODUCER Sloan Campi sloan@montereycountynow.com (x105) contributors Nik Blaskovich, Rob Brezsny, Michael Dadula, Robert Daniels, Tonia Eaton, Caitlin Fillmore, Jacqueline Weixel, Paul Wilner Cartoons Rob Rogers, Tom Tomorrow Production Art Director/Production Manager Karen Loutzenheiser karen@montereycountynow.com (x108) Graphic Designer Kevin Jewell kevinj@montereycountynow.com (x114) Graphic Designer Alexis Estrada alexis@montereycountynow.com (x114) Graphic Designer Lani Headley lani@montereycountynow.com (x114) SALES senior Sales Executive Diane Glim diane@montereycountynow.com (x124) Senior Sales Executive George Kassal george@montereycountynow.com (x122) Senior Sales Executive Keith Bruecker keith@montereycountynow.com (x118) Classifieds business development director Keely Richter keely@montereycountynow.com (x123) Digital Director of Digital Media Kevin Smith kevin@montereycountynow.com (x119) Distribution Distribution AT Arts Co. atartsco@gmail.com Distribution Control Harry Neal Business/Front Office Office Manager Linda Maceira linda@montereycountynow.com (x101) Bookkeeping Rochelle Trawick rochelle@montereycountynow.com 668 Williams Ave., Seaside, CA 93955 831-394-5656, (FAX) 831-394-2909 www.montereycountynow.com We’d love to hear from you. Send us your tips at tipline.montereycountynow.com. now [nou] adverb at the present time or moment Monterey County Now Local news, arts and entertainment, food and drink, calendar and daily newsletter. Subcribe to the newsletter: www.montereycountynow.com/subscribe Find us online: www.montereycountynow.com

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4 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY May 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com THE BUZZ FREE SPEECH Every year, the Pulitzer Prizes are awarded to celebrate the best in journalism, and the 2023 awards were announced on May 6. In the public service category, ProPublica was recognized for its “groundbreaking and ambitious reporting that pierced the thick wall of secrecy surrounding the Supreme Court to reveal how a small group of politically influential billionaires wooed justices with lavish gifts and travel, pushing the Court to adopt its first code of conduct.” For investigative reporting, the New York Times was recognized for revealing the extent to which migrant children are working in a variety of industries—and how systems meant to protect against child labor have failed to stop it. The local reporting award went to City Bureau and the Invisible Institute, which collaborated to reveal how Chicago police handle missing person cases, and the disproportionate impact on Black women and girls. The breaking news award went to Lookout Santa Cruz for its coverage of flooding and mudslides in Santa Cruz County in January 2023. Good: The digital divide doesn’t just apply to income and geographic area—it also applies to age. According to the Pew Research Center, 1 in 4 adults over 65 don’t use the internet, while 35 percent lack a home broadband connection. As the world increasingly socializes online, this has left many seniors feeling lonely and isolated. To help combat this, AT&T and Human-I-T donated 100 refurbished laptops to Meals on Wheels of the Monterey Peninsula on Wednesday, May 15, which were distributed to older Monterey County residents at the Meals on Wheels Community Center in Pacific Grove. Once they received the laptops, the residents were then invited to participate in a digital literacy workshop that covered topics such as basic computer skills and online safety. According to Internet for All, 8 percent of households in California don’t have access to the internet or a device. GREAT: Three cities and the County of Monterey have been awarded funds by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to support efforts to create more affordable housing, as well as support efforts to assist renters and move people from homeless shelters into housing. Salinas, which has plans to convert a hotel into transitional housing and is home to the county’s largest shelter, received the highest amount of funds, totaling over $3 million. Over $2 million comes from Community Development Block Grants. Another $729,000 is earmarked for building housing, the rest is for emergency housing and shelters. The City of Monterey received over $251,000 in CDBG money, while Seaside received $327,000, also from CDBG. The County received just under $1.2 million in CDBG money. The total influx of federal housing and assistance funds received is more than $4.8 million. GOOD WEEK / GREAT WEEK THE WEEKLY TALLY The number of zero-emission vehicles Californians purchased in the first three months of 2024, the highest ever for the first quarter of a year. That total accounted for 23.9 percent of all new vehicle sales in the state during that time, and drove the historical number of ZEV sales in the state to over 1.8 million. Source: California Energy Commission 102,507 QUOTE OF THE WEEK “I am extremely thankful for everyone… keeping it all together to find these animals.” -King City Mayor Mike LeBarre, speaking May 10 about the arrests of three people suspected of killing six in a pair of South County shootings (see story, montereycountynow.com). FOR MORE INFO + REGISTRATION MONTEREY.ORG/REC (831) 646-3866 SCAN ME! REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN! THE CITY OF MONTEREY BEST SUMMER EVER! CAMP QUIEN SABE OVERNIGHT CAMP WHISPERING PINES DAY CAMP TINY TOTS SUMMER CAMP SPORTS CAMPS SPECIALTY CAMPS LEGO, GYMNASTICS, WOODWORKING AND MUCH MORE!

www.montereycountynow.com MAY 16-22, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 5 CELEBRATING HOSPITAL WEEK 2024 ...and our gold medal winners! TEAM AWARDS NURSE OF THE YEAR Anna Mercado, RN Oncology EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR Timothy France Information Technology PHYSICIAN EXCELLENCE IN SERVICE AND PROFESSIONALISM Alison Wilson, DO Hospitalist EXEMPLAR AWARDS Laurel Black, RN ICU/CCU Exemplar - Teach Meghan Ackerman, RN Outpatient Infusion Exemplar - Protect Cecilia Alejandre, RN Radiology Exemplar - Empower Rebecca Salvador-Mendoza, RN Emergency Department Exemplar - Heal Mari-Anne Low MAGNET Program Exemplar - Support Cheryl Bacon Patient Care Resources Exemplar - Teamwork Stephanie Sterner Occupational Therapy Exemplar - Accountability Rodolfo Recta Materials Management Exemplar - Respect CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL OUR NOMINEES! Scan this QR code to view a complete list. RISING TO GOLD | Achieving Excellence Every Day SalinasValleyHealth.com Team DAISY Pediatrics Team STAR Environmental Services

6 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY MAY 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com 831 Helping to beautify neighborhoods, packing food at the food bank, building a greenhouse and spending time with the elderly are all popular community service activities. For high school students at Trinity Christian School in Monterey, they are also part of the curriculum. This curriculum is called FLEx Wednesdays, for Formational Learning Experiences. Instead of attending academic classes, high schoolers spend three hours every other Wednesday volunteering in their community. The school is classified as a Teaching for Transformation school, a program in which teachers and students participate in real projects and get involved. “It’s putting the kids in a position where they actually are serving a real need that exists,” Principal Rick Fitzgerald says. “They’re learning about not only that topic and not only who they’re helping, but they’re learning as much about themselves.” Every year, teachers and staff discuss which projects they will include for FLEx day. They also send out a survey in the neighborhood asking neighbors about their needs and how students can help them out. They collaborate with different organizations, including Meals on Wheels, Food Bank for Monterey County, Monterey Bay Charter School and Pacific Grove Senior Living. Some projects are more physical, such as gardening or beach cleanups; others focus more on academics, like helping homeschool kids catch up with math. Megan Ryan, director of student life, says they encourage students to sign up for activities they like, but since they are young, “We’re also trying to encourage them to try something new or try something different so they’re not comfortable all the time.” The school combines learning, service and critical thinking in its curriculum. Once students return to school from a project, they share their experiences or write an essay for their class. “There are a lot of students here that live in a bubble,” says Hannah Britain, a biology teacher. Britain runs different FLEx projects, trying to break out of the bubble. One is volunteering at the food bank, while the most recent activity was putting together birthday cake kits. Her students organized a fundraiser and assembled 50 kits that each included a disposable tin, a can of soda (to use instead of eggs), frosting, balloons and candles. They delivered them to the food bank on Wednesday, May 8. Another project Britain heads up twice a year is at Pacific Grove Senior Living. Students are paired with a resident to chat and get to know each other. At the end, they hold a reception where each participant reads the biographies they wrote about the resident they interacted with. While FLEx days have become part of the school routine, some students were unsure about them in the beginning. “I was not excited for FLEx, I actually thought I would like academics more than going out and doing this,” Desiree Peraza says. Over time, Peraza changed her mind, noting volunteering regularly has helped her to overcome her shyness: “It got me out of my comfort zone.” Tito Gonzalez-Perez, a high school senior, participates in gardening projects and uses the skills he learned from his grandfather, who owns a landscaping business, to mentor younger students. The teenagers say FLEx Wednesdays are a platform for teambuilding and bringing students from different grades together. Students learn during the hands-on experiences, and the experiences also apply in the classroom. During English class, they read the classic American novel To Kill a Mockingbird and discussed inequalities and racial injustice. Then they took it a step further and researched organizations that address injustices in America and picked the Innocence Project of New Orleans. The class raised $200 for the organization and also spoke with the CEO to learn how, as teenagers, they could address injustice in their community. “It’s a traditional book that a lot of schools would read, but [FLEx] extends the learning into a whole different level,” Fitzgerald says. FLExing Minds Trinity Christian School takes academics to new heights by volunteering in the community every other week. By Celia Jiménez As part of FLEx Wednesdays, students from Trinity Christian School in Monterey volunteered at the Food Bank for Monterey County on May 8. Students work with different organizations every other week as part of their curriculum. “It extends learning into a whole different level.” TALES FROM THE AREA CODE CONTRIBUTED BY HANNAH BRITAIN The Chamber Includes We are inclusive, guided by our commitment to be an organization where all members have a sense of belonging, feel respected, valued, and are provided a level of service and support that enables them to be successful. If you're looking for a platform to initiate important conversations and grow your business, we invite you to join our business association on the Monterey Peninsula! Join Today! • montereychamber.com • info@montereychamber.com • 831.648.5350

www.montereycountynow.com MAY 16-22, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 7 Our past doesn’t define our future. Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) from your past — like abuse, neglect, or family substance use or incarceration — can cause toxic stress that impacts your life and relationships today. They don’t determine what happens next. You can learn how to live beyond ACEs. © 2024 Office of the California Surgeon General. Funded under contract #2022-238-OSG. Start healing at livebeyondCA.org.

8 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY MAy 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com news Six years ago, the County of Monterey signed on as a lead plaintiff in a landmark class action lawsuit brought by the State of California against major pharmaceutical companies in the wake of the misery and deaths caused by prescription opioids. In 2021 the plaintiffs won a $26 billion settlement, with $23.5 billion mandated to be distributed among participating states, with $2.34 billion allotted to California, to be used by counties and cities for drug prevention, education and treatment. The County of Monterey received more than $2.9 million in settlement payments since 2022, according to a KFF Health News online tracker, but no money has been put to use, according to the Monterey County Civil Grand Jury in a report released on May 6. In March 2023, the Monterey County Health Department, in charge of distributing the funds, presented a draft plan to the Board of Supervisors to spend the initial payments on education, Naloxone distribution, a $100,000 media campaign and other programs, with $95,000 to hire a halftime management analyst to coordinate efforts. No date was offered for completing the department’s plan. “The fentanyl/opioid crisis is complicated and continues to require many partners in a wide variety of disciplines to respond,” a statement released by the Health Department reads, adding that a plan is “in progress” and will be completed by July 31, as requested by the grand jury. The department contends it has already been working with community partners on education and Naloxone distribution. “This funding will allow for a more robust response from prevention to treatment and beyond,” the statement reads. Payment, Interrupted Over $2.9 million in opioid settlement funds awarded to Monterey County have yet to be used. By Pam Marino Two years after Amazon backed out of a massive warehouse project in Salinas, the online retail and web services giant confirmed it is revisiting its plans to build in Monterey County’s largest city. In an email to the Weekly, Amazon spokesperson Sam Stephenson says the company has “started initial development for an operations facility in Salinas.” “Launch plans are in the very early stages and additional construction, design and permitting steps remain,” he adds. “We appreciate the support of our partners in Salinas.” While Amazon did not provide further details on the project, city records obtained by the Weekly show the project is largely the same as when it was first proposed in 2021. In late 2021, Scannell Properties filed an application to the City of Salinas for a warehouse and distribution facility, standing five stories tall—up to 110 feet—and nearly 3 million square feet. Documents listed Amazon as the intended tenant. Plans call for the facility to be located on a portion of the Salinas Ag Industrial Center, currently an agricultural lot at the corner of Abbott Street and Harris Road. The center was approved as a concept in 2009, but had not received any development applications until Scannell’s submission. In April 2022, then-City Manager Steve Carrigan said the project was tabled indefinitely, citing rising construction costs as the reasoning from the developer. The application was withdrawn due to inactivity in August 2022, according to city records. However, in November 2023, Scannell purchased the property from Uni-Kool Partners for $14.7 million, county assessor records show. When the concept was approved in 2009, the 257-acre Salinas Ag Industrial Center was envisioned as an agricultural commerce area, where new and relocated ag businesses could expand their operations. In a December letter to Walker Williams of Scannell Properties, Salinas Community Development Director Lisa Brinton wrote that some of the uses outlined in the project do not conform with the center’s specific plan, namely its mention of “driving schools,” “making products on demand” and “assembling.” Brinton requested Scannell provide more information. City records show constant communication between city officials and the developer and a consultant since late 2023, including a tour of an Amazon facility in Tracy. Recently, on May 8, city engineers approved Scannell’s request to adjust some street segments within the project. Salinas Mayor Kimbley Craig says the Amazon facility could hire more than 1,000 employees with full benefits, which include college tuition support and industry certification programs. Craig adds the project will boost the city’s property tax revenues, and Scannell will build out the infrastructure on the vacant property. More details are forthcoming as the project works through the process, she notes. Groundwork for streets is expected to begin sometime this month. “We certainly recognize the opportunity to expand jobs in Salinas, but we also want to make sure we’re doing everything we can so the residents of Salinas benefit from Amazon being here,” Craig says. The Salinas Ag Industrial Center was approved as a concept in 2009, but has remained undeveloped since then. Amazon’s project would change this empty lot. Prime Time Amazon confirms it is revisiting Salinas plans after a developer buys property. By Erik Chalhoub More than 1,500 flags were planted in the Colton Hall lawn on Aug. 29, 2022, to mark opioid deaths in the county, the families they left behind, or people in recovery. “We want residents to benefit from Amazon being here.” celia jiménez Pam Marino

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10 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY MAY 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com The paved, two-lane portion of Highway 1 through Big Sur is an attraction unto itself. It’s also the artery that residents, employees, emergency responders and tourists use to get to and from the remote community. With access limited on all sides—on the South Coast, due to three separate slides, and due to a slip-out to the north at Rocky Creek Bridge—travel into and out of Big Sur has been a chore as much as a scenic attraction. After the southbound lane collapsed down the cliff on March 30, Caltrans opened twice-daily convoy access to local traffic and essential workers only in the remaining northbound lane. In the six weeks since, vehicles have lined up to pass in either direction at 7am and 5pm daily. It’s meant Big Sur is not quite an island—there’s still access to town, but life south of the convoy is quieter and free of crowds. “There are these really beautiful glimmers of magic that can only happen when it’s quiet like this,” says Diana Ballantyne, general manager of Fernwood Resort. But Ballantyne, the “mother hen” responsible for 44 employees, has also been stressed; 40 are laid off. She expected 1,500 campground nights in April. Instead, she sold just two campground nights. That was before Caltrans announced the general public could also travel through the convoy point, but even since that change took effect two weeks ago on April 29, tourism activity has been slow. And each reservation requires a discussion with a prospective guest about convoy travel. “Every conversation with a guest is at least 15 minutes on the phone. You talk about their dog sitter schedule. You go through the whole thing and then they says, ‘Eh, I don’t think that’s going to work for me,’” Ballantyne says. Fernwood is planning to staff up for the Hipnic music festival May 17-19, and the highway will open to 24/7 traffic just in time. Caltrans announced on May 14 that traffic signals will be ready to replace the convoy starting at 6:30am on Friday, May 17, providing one-way traffic control. Even so, people expect the ramp-up to be slow. “Consumer confidence in Big Sur as a destination product is at an all-time low,” says Matt Glazer, general manager of Deetjen’s, where 36 of 42 employees faced a reduction in hours and $250,000 in room stays were refunded. “Getting the word out about being reopened is more difficult because the news cycle talks about the disaster.” For the past couple of years, the state has pushed to transition K-12 campuses into community schools, designed to serve not only as a space to learn but a hub where parents and students can get support for needs like housing, mental health and more. The goal is to break down the barriers for families so they can reach the services they need and students can focus on academic success. School districts aren’t starting from zero; most already provide similar services on campus or through family resource centers. But funding is helping drive the vision forward. For the 2024-2025 school year, the California Community School partnership program distributed $1.3 billion. In Monterey County, Alisal Union, Salinas Union High School, Monterey Peninsula Unified and Soledad Unified school districts received five-year implementation grants for community schools. AUSD received the largest sum, $17.1 million, and will convert all 12 of its elementary schools into community schools. (It has pilot programs now running at four, including Jesse G. Sanchez and Virginia Rocca Barton schools.) “We understand that the biggest impact we will have is if we take the whole family on the adventure,” says Monica Anzo, associate superintendent of educational services at AUSD. MPUSD received $8.7 million for its Seaside schools; SUHSD got $6.6 million for El Sausal Middle, Everett Alvarez and North Salinas high schools; and Soledad received $5.7 million for four elementary schools. Each school will offer slightly different services based on local needs. Monterey County Office of Education implemented a community school framework last year. While community schools may focus on services outside of a classroom setting, the goal is enabling students to thrive: “We hope to see lower chronic absenteeism rates, lower suspension/expulsion issues, and higher academic achievement,” says Ernesto Vela, assistant superintendent at MCOE. Slow Road Limited access on Highway 1 creates hardship, but also some magic, in Big Sur. By Sara Rubin NEWS OPEN HOUSING Hear from city representatives and regional partners from the City of Del Rey Oaks about the future of housing and sustainable development. Following a brief presentation, attendees will be invited to ask questions. 6-9pm Thursday, May 16. Monterey Moose Lodge, 555 Canyon Del Rey Blvd., Del Rey Oaks. Free. 394-8511, jguertin@delreyoaks.com. POLYGLOT The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center hosts Language Day, inviting visitors to campus to learn about different cultures. Come see live performances, and language and cultural exhibits. 10am-3pm Friday, May 17. Soldier Field, Presidio of Monterey, 76th Artillery Street and Corporal Ewing Boulevard, Monterey. Free. Language_ Day@dliflc.edu. POWER PLAYERS The third annual Women Empowerment Resource Fair features workshops on resume writing and job interviewing; financial literacy; CPR; and more. The keynote speaker, Sheriff Tina Nieto, shares her personal story. Useful items for job interviews and school (such as clothing, backpacks, etc.) will also be available. 10am-2pm Saturday, May 18. Greenfield Memorial Hall, 615 El Camino Real, Greenfield. Free. info@ womenarelimitless.org, rotary5230.org. FIRST CITY Make your voice heard by providing input to the City of Monterey Parks and Recreation Department’s online survey for the Old Capitol Site Park Plan. This is the second online survey and it is intended to inform the open space plan that will guide the future of the site. The survey is available until Friday, June 7 online at haveyoursaymonterey. org/oldcapitolsite. BUILDING UP Members of the public are welcome to comment on the county-wide housing plan, known as the housing element. Staff invites residents to review the plan and submit feedback before final approval. The draft plan is available for viewing online at countyofmonterey.gov/ generalplanupdates or in hard copy at the County’s Housing and Community Development Dept., at district supervisors’ offices or at Monterey County Free Libraries branches. Comments can be submitted until June 6 by mail to: County of Monterey Housing and Community Development, Attn: Jaime Scott Guthrie, 1441 Schilling Place, South 2nd Floor, Salinas, CA 93901 or by email at GeneralPlanUpdates@ co.monterey.ca.us. 796-6414. Class Act Monterey County schools receive nearly $40 million to implement community schools. By Celia Jiménez Convoys have been running for about one hour twice a day at 7am and 5pm, with roughly 700 vehicles a day, up from about 500 when it was closed to visitors. E-MAIL: toolbox@montereycountynow.com TOOLBOX “There are beautiful glimmers of magic when it’s quiet.” SARA RUBIN

www.montereycountynow.com MAY 16-22, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 11 samara joy josé james mavis staples stanley clarke n•forever TICKETS ON SALE NOW! MONTEREYJAZZ.ORG joshua redman group feat. gabrielle cavassa SCAN ME Take a brief survey to share your thoughts on visitors and other tourism related issues in Monterey County. TOURISM MATTERS TO MONTEREY COUNTY AND SO DOES YOUR OPINION

12 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY May 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com On May 9, staff from the Salinas Valley Basin Groundwater Sustainability Agency presented its board a long-awaited study about the so-called Deep Aquifers, which have been increasingly mined in recent years as seawater intrusion marches inland toward the city of Salinas. The problem is, those aquifers— which in the report are defined as being below a layer of clay separating them from the 400-foot deep aquifer— aren’t recharging. The report states: “Isotopic analysis indicates the areas sampled have received no recharge [from surface] water since at least 1953.” Taken as a whole, the nearly 150page report is a bombshell. “Despite chronic groundwater elevation declines in most Deep Aquifers wells, well installations continued.” It goes on to conclude that “groundwater conditions of the Deep Aquifers continue to degrade,” and that “seawater intrusion and subsidence pose severe economic risk if declining groundwater elevation trends are not reversed.” Even though the risks had long been known, or least suspected, the County of Monterey for years approved new agricultural wells ministerially, and only in 2018 did the Board of Supervisors pass a moratorium on drilling new wells into the Deep Aquifers for agriculture, with the exception of replacement wells. That came after growers drilled deep wells on the former Armstrong Ranch property north of Marina and have since been pumping all they need from the finite water resource that is also a critical water supply source for Marina Coast Water District’s service area, which extends as far south as some parts of Seaside and even Del Rey Oaks, and as far east as East Garrison. The SVBGSA was created in response to the state’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act passed in 2014. The law requires that sustainability be achieved by 2042. Sarah Hardgrave, SVBGSA’s deputy general manager, says the study provides the “scientific basis” to inform decision makers, and that right now, the agency is working mainly on two potential plans to bring the northern valley’s aquifers into balance: One is extracting brackish water near the coast and treating it, and the other is creating additional diversions from the Salinas River and injecting water in an aquifer storage and recovery project like the one the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District pioneered locally in the 2000s—essentially, an underground reservoir. Who will pay for all of that? That’s a question the SVBGSA is now wrestling with, and if history is a teacher, it will be argued about for years to come. Landwatch Monterey County, an anti-sprawl nonprofit that often weighs in on water issues, sent a letter to the Board of Supervisors May 6 stating, “In view of the GSA’s dilatory approach to taking needed action, especially if that action limits new wells or pumping, the County can and should use its authority over well permitting and its authority to regulate groundwater pumping to implement the no net increase rule, immediately.” Mine Fields A comprehensive study of unsustainable groundwater pumping in the county is cause for alarm. By David Schmalz Armstrong Ranch, just north of Marina, was pasture for decades. Since it was sold in 2017, growers have mined the Deep Aquifers that local residents rely on for municipal water supply. NEWS “The areas received no recharge water since at least 1953.” DANIEL DREIFUSS ♦ 3 Card Poker ♠ Century 21st No Bust Black Jack ♣ Texas Hold’em ♥ Baccarat FULL BAR! BLACKJACK BONUS POINTS PAYS UP TO $20,000 SMALL TOWN BIG PAYOUTS! 1-800-Gambler • Gega-003846, Gega-Gega-003703, Gega-000889 Gega-000891 Gega-002838 The Marina Club Casino ensures the safety and security of all guests and team members at all times, while providing exceptional service. 204 Carmel Ave. Marina 831-384-0925 casinomonterey.com ♠ ♣ ♥ ♦ Just minutes from Downtown Monterey Where Monterey Comes To Play ANTIQUES & COLLECTIBLES Stop By To Shop And Find Your Vintage Treasure OVER 100 DEALERS 21,000 SQUARE FEET The Largest Antiques and Collectibles Mall on the Central Coast 471 WAVE STREET MONTEREY (831) 655-0264 P M canneryrowantiquemall.com Open Daily 11am-6pm ’23 Voted Monterey County's Best Antique Shop

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14 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY MAy 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com On a Boat I love this! (“How a tongue-in-cheek piece of art in Seaside is creating change.,” posted May 10.) What a fantastic mural, Hanif Panni. Way to make an annoying requirement sooo much happier! Amanda Wilson Menefee | via social media He lives a couple of houses away from me. I drive past his house every day. The art work is so good I honestly thought his boat was still parked in his driveway. It took me a few days to realize it was a painting. Richard Totorica | Seaside Tweaking bureaucrats is great sport. You have taken it to a new level. Bravo! Roger Chatterton | via social media Pure and hilarious form of malicious compliance. I 100-percent love this. Bonus he helped a local artist! Amy Colville | via social media That’s outsmarting the fox. Nice job. Rick Valdez | via social media Brilliant sense of humor! Maura Donohue | via social media Looking good! Ridiculous violations earn creative and comical responses. Pretty sure the City of Seaside has more important issues to be throwing time and money at than harassing this long time resident over his beautiful boat parked in his own dang yard! Michelle Fluent | via social media This is such an amazing story! Heather Siino-Wickiser | via social media House and Home Thanks to Pam Marino for your continuing coverage of the housing issues we face in Monterey County, and especially for alerting us to this very important document (“The County of Monterey releases a hefty plan to increase housing—now comes the hard part,” May 9-15). I followed the included link and have downloaded the impressive 985-page report, and I highly recommend others take a look as well. The sheer size and scope can seem a bit daunting at first, but so far I’ve found it to be a very thoughtful and well laid-out presentation, which makes the job of reading and understanding the concepts much easier. I’m finding the numbers to pretty much verify what most of us who live and work here already know, which is that the cost of housing has gone up at a much quicker pace than our earned income. And of course much of this can be attributed to the lack of affordable housing. Nothing new there, but what I’m hoping to discover somewhere in these pages are the proposals that might help alleviate at least some of that documented housing shortage. In any case, I would like to thank those involved with putting this report together. It was obviously a huge task, and I’m hopeful that this is a good starting point for moving forward with this important challenge. Derek Dean | Monterey HEALING NEWS Thank you for your fantastic story on Dr. David Craig Wright (“A Pacific Grove doctor makes a discovery that could change the world of vaccines,” May 9-15). You captured him perfectly! He is so deserving of this notice. He has generously served this community for a long, long time, but always “under the radar.” Dr. Wright is not “just” the inventor. He is the infectious disease specialist who saved my life. When I contracted two infections from a single tick bite in my 50s, my excellent health spiraled downhill. I was misdiagnosed with Parkinson’s, MS, lupus and “difficult menopause.” I spent $250,000 chasing insufficient treatments. My quality of life and hope were nearly gone. One fortunate day, Dr. Wright saw me hunched over a walker in P.G. and asked, “What’s ailing you?” A week later, I began his daily infusion therapy. Forty-two days later, I was cleared of the bugs that had inhabited my body and brain for over seven years. Dr. Wright is a brilliant medical detective. I can never fully express my gratitude to him for gifting me with 14 unexpected years…and counting! Sally Aberg | Carmel Valley Great article. A WOW rating. Gerry Orton | Del Rey Oaks I used to take yoga classes in that very spot. The story of Dr. Wright is lovely. It was a brilliant idea of his parents to assign each “big kid” a baby to care for. It was smart and sweet, and the idea that art, music and humor are the backbone of healing is sterling. Thanks for telling us about Dr. Wright. Marilyn Brown | Pacific Grove GLOBAL THREATS The student protesters of today should call for divestment from China that has nukes pointed at America (“Viewing student protesters with fear is nothing new. Neither is the protesters’ anti-war message,” May 9-15). Hamas’ charter calls for killing of all Jews worldwide. The students need to go back to school. Carl Silverman | via web Flying the Flag I was so pleased to read your comments about the Israeli flag at City Hall in Seaside (“Squid Fry: False Flag,” May 9-15). It seems as if many are ignoring this issue. Thanks for stepping up. Marilyn Ross | Carmel Animal Kingdom I sure hope there’s a plan to protect the seal pups when that construction in Pacific Grove starts [on the American Tin Cannery building, slated to become a hotel] that will last a really long time, or there will be many more abandoned pups sadly (“The thrill—and tragedies—of wild animals are now on display on local beaches,” posted May 8). Esther Malkin | Monterey Correction A story about Monterey City Council candidates (“Two districts in Monterey have open City Council seats; a slate of candidates has coalesced,” May 9-15) incorrectly stated that Jean Rasch currently serves as chair of the Neighborhood and Community Improvement Committee. She is not a current member; she served on the NCIP from 2015-23, and as chair from 2022-23. Letters • CommentsOPINION Submit letters to the editor to letters@montereycountynow.com. Please keep your letter to 150 words or less; subject to editing for space. Please include your full name, contact information and city you live in.

www.montereycountynow.com MAy 16-22, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 15 At first glance, an event taking place on Thursday, May 16 in Carmel Valley appears to be a neutral discussion, “Offshore Wind Power: Eco Friend or Foe.” “California Arts and Sciences Institute has assembled an elite panel of experts to address our Central Coast concerns,” the event description reads. The photo on the event page shows a dead whale on the sand, captioned to say: “Dead Humpback Whale on Lido Beach, NY, near offshore wind operations.” But according to news reports, the whale was likely struck by a vessel. That’s just one misleading layer. Read further into the event description and speaker biographies, and the “friend or foe” question is already answered—the point is not to explore whether offshore wind power is good or bad, but to persuade guests it is bad. Panelists are economist David Henderson, who will focus on “possible adverse outcomes to California utility customers.” Environmental scientist C. Michael Hogan “will analyze likely declines in our whale populations.” Nicole Dorfman, “a leader in Central Coast environmental affairs,” will speak on industrialization and damage to fisheries. (Dorfman in fact represents the San Luis Obispo-based REACT Alliance, which serves as a “united voice to oppose the Central Coast Offshore Wind Project.”) This is just one event in the lineup hosted by the California Arts and Sciences Institute, a nonprofit in its first full year of operation, with events at local venues such as Hidden Valley Music Seminars and Tehama Golf Club, and also Hogan’s home in Scotland—a castle he says was built in 1350. The group has touched upon on a range of topics—artist talks, a panel on AI, the economy. These events similarly represent themselves in a neutral light. But some reveal themselves to be about promulgating popular conservative views. For example, in December, Weekly staff writer Agata Pope˛da attended a CASI event in a private home with an ocean view in Carmel Highlands, at the invitation of Hogan. Henderson— who has affiliations with conservative think tanks like the Hoover Institution and was an economic adviser in the Reagan administration—was the speaker in this intimate setting, and he held up a copy of Capital in the Twenty-First Century by French economist Thomas Piketty, which delves into the wealth gap. Henderson’s point was that taxing the rich is a bad idea. “Piketty’s proposed taxes will hit the working class itself,” he told the group of roughly 30 attendees, before asking: “Who in this room thinks they are poor?” It was probably meant as a joke, Pope˛da says. Nobody raised their hand. Whether the events are big or small, by invitation or open to the public, CASI appears to be not-so-subtly advancing a particular political agenda. That should perhaps be no surprise. Its board includes Dalila Epperson, a Republican candidate for Congress in 2022 and for State Assembly in 2024 who during the pandemic organized parents to attend school board meetings to advocate for right-wing causes; Lawrence Samuels of the Libertarian Party of Monterey County; and Edward King, a right-wing podcast host. Issues That Matter with Edward King features a range of topics similar to what CASI addresses. The podcast claims it “tackles the concerns of people across all spectrums,” but in one episode, King calls transgender rights a “perversion of our society.” Of course, there’s nothing wrong with a conservative-leaning group hosting events. But CASI represents itself as neutral when it’s anything but. Given the group’s particular interest in outreach to schools—and the efforts of conservative groups to gain control in schools— it’s concerning. (The group is currently sponsoring a student art contest, with a June 15 deadline.) I asked Hogan, the group’s president and chair, about CASI’s objectives. “We have so much entertainment in Monterey County, but we really need more substantive get-togethers,” he says. He adds the group’s events so far cut across the political spectrum. (When I ask about the offshore wind event, he offers: “You picked the one topic that does have more political implications.”) What began as a brainstorming session has evolved. It’s important we know what the group’s real agenda is. Sara Rubin is the Weekly’s editor. Reach her at sara@montereycountynow.com. Spin to the Right A new arts and culture group is subtly advancing a right-wing agenda. By Sara Rubin In Limbo…Squid has been pondering some of life’s most perplexing questions lately: If a kelp frond falls in the ocean and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Which came first, the fish or the egg? If the Monterey County Planning Commission doesn’t approve a project, does that mean it denied it? Squid has an answer for the latter question: No, not really, at least most of the time. It’s complicated. In early April, a shorthanded commission cast a split vote for a proposed farmworker housing project on Gonda Street in Pajaro, unable to come up with a compromise to turn a vote in either direction. Amid the confusion, commissioners and county staff discussed for nearly a half-hour how to move past the deadlock. In the end, it was decided that each commissioner would come up with a reason for their vote, which would be implemented into a future resolution explaining they could not come to a consensus. On May 8, the commission, shorthanded again, unanimously approved that resolution which confirmed it neither approved or denied the project. Confused? So is Squid. Squid expects this decision (or lack thereof?) to be appealed to the Board of Supervisors, where maybe we can get an actual resolution. Snippet Off…It seems protests dominate the news cycle these days, many occurring on college campuses. Squid knew it was only a matter of time before they came to the Monterey Peninsula, so Squid wasn’t surprised to receive an email on May 13 announcing a protest in Seaside scheduled for Thursday, May 16 to bring awareness to a “crisis.” What would the protesters’ message be? The group organizing it calls themselves the “Bloodstained Men,” so Squid immediately thought it would be related to the death and destruction in Gaza. But Squid projected ink all over the lair as Squid read more. “The public will be reminded that babies whose genitals are mutilated as infants grow up to be men who are speaking out about what was done to their penis before they could defend themselves,” the email reads. The Bloodstained Men are visiting Seaside on a tour of Northern California, donning white suits (with a blood stain on the crotch) and hats, led by their founder, a man who goes by the name Brother K. That is enough to give Squid the heebie-jeebies. They call themselves “intactivists,” defined as a person who campaigns against infant circumcision. People are welcome to wear the bloodstained suit at the protest, the group says. Squid may be foreskin-less also, but Squid thinks there are much more urgent things to protest about in this day and age. the local spin SQUID FRY THE MISSION OF MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY IS TO INSPIRE INDEPENDENT THINKING AND CONSCIOUS ACTION, ETC. It represents itself as neutral when it’s anything but. Send Squid a tip: squid@montereycountynow.com

16 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY may 16-22, 2024 www.montereycountynow.com The legacy of Joe Kapp, a football legend who cut his teeth in Alisal, is getting a fresh look. By David Schmalz From Salinas to the Super Bowl Joe Kapp was born in Santa Fe, but he was made in Salinas. A football player who Sports Illustrated once dubbed “The Toughest Chicano,” Kapp was a man of many facets: a husband, a father, an older brother and son. And, an athlete. But none of those things are what set him apart. What made Kapp special is that he was a leader, and above all, a fighter, both on the field and in the world. Kapp was never inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame—he played most of his professional career in Canada—but he left a lasting impact on the sport that resonates to this day. In 1972, he sued the league over a contract dispute with the New England Patriots that ended his football career. This came after Kapp had lent his weight to La Causa, the yearslong fight Cesar Chavez led on behalf of farmworkers’ rights. Kapp told a group of protesters in L.A. in 1970—the peak year of his fame—that he’d picked grapes and lettuce himself. “I’ve seen their agony…Steinbeck didn’t describe half the scene.” In 1974, Kapp prevailed in his lawsuit against the NFL, although he was never awarded monetary damages. But to this day, the NFL players making millions have Kapp to thank, at least in part—he was the first athlete to poke the bear, to stand up for what he thought was right. Joe Kapp leading—and leaping—the Vikings to victory over the Cleveland Browns during the Vikings’ 1969-70 Super Bowl run. Courtesy of Minnesota Vikings

www.montereycountynow.com May 16-22, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 17 He reportedly told a crowd of 15,000 at a farmworkers’ protest in 1970, “Get off your knees; unite!… Fight!…Fight the bastards!” That was Joe Kapp, a singular man, someone who could be at home both in Hollywood—he appeared in several films and TV shows—or in the barrio, the word he used to describe the neighborhoods of his youth. Kapp’s eldest son, J.J., absorbed that spirit, and went on to become a public defender in Santa Clara County. In retirement, he helped his dad, who’d long suffered from dementia brought on at least in part by head injuries he suffered playing football, complete his memoir, Joe Kapp — “The Toughest Chicano,” which first printed in 2019. The heart of the book was written in 1988 and ’89 by Joe Kapp and Ned Averbuck, but J.J. and his friend Robert Phelps brought it to the finish line. Most of the book is about football and details chapters of his career, but all throughout, it’s sprinkled with his wisdom—Kapp may have been a fighter, but he was also studious, as a great quarterback must be. In a game of X’s and O’s and ever-changing formations, to be good at playing quarterback—the most singular position in sports—you have to be smart. There is now a second edition of that book with an afterword written by Jim Rainey, a journalist with the Los Angeles Times who is also a UC Berkeley alum, that delves deeper into what is arguably the most incredible play in the football history. It happened in 1982 in a game between Stanford and Cal when Kapp, who’d played quarterback at Cal in the late ’50s, was in his first season as Cal’s coach decades later. To this day, it’s still known as “The Play.” The National Steinbeck Center in Salinas is hosting an author’s talk on Saturday, May 18 with J.J. Kapp and coauthor Phelps, along with Rainey. Ignacio Ornelas Rodriguez, a Salinas native and a historian at Stanford who focuses on civil rights and social movements, will moderate a panel discussion, and sale proceeds from the book will go toward two one-time yearly scholarships of $2,500. One goes to a Latino student entering Cal, the other to a college-bound senior at Alisal High. Kapp died on May 8, 2023—just over a year ago—at the age of 85 at his home in Los Gatos, and per his wishes, his brain was sent to UCSF for study. On Feb. 29, UCSF doctors reported back to Kapp’s family that he had suffered the most advanced form of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, aka CTE, a condition affecting the brain that’s impacted many former professional football players. It’s because of CTE that the rules of football keep changing—the league is at least making a show of trying to protect its players. CTE’s symptoms can manifest in myriad ways, with depression and memory loss among them. But would Kapp still have played today, as a kid in Salinas, knowing all we know now? There is no doubt the answer is yes. “There are many good things about football,” Kapp wrote at the end of his memoir, “most importantly, providing an outlet for the violence that exists in the souls of men. Men are born for games.” And Kapp was a gamer with the best of them, and now, just over a year after his passing, the second edition of his memoir provides an opportunity to look back on the life of a man who spent his formative years in Salinas, proving his toughness, and who later became a national celebrity. Kapp lived a fascinating life, but unlike Chavez, he’s not widely celebrated locally. And while he wasn’t born in Salinas and didn’t attend high school there past the 10th grade, in every other way, he was a native son. Kapp was born in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 1938. He was the first-born. The heating source in adobe house he was born in was a pot-bellied stove fueled by coal, or sometimes 2-by-4s his dad would steal from construction sites and then saw into pieces. In his memoir, Kapp describes his dad Robert Douglas, aka R.D., the son of German immigrants, as a “charming Kapp’s 7th grade class photo from El Sausal Middle School. Kapp is top row, second from right. “He was tough enough to give up his career to do the right thing.” Courtesy of J.J. Kapp

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