The City of Manteca is taking the lead in bringing back a San Joaquin County certified farmers’ market to downtown.
Dubbed “Market on Maple”, the Thursday night event will take place along the 100 block of Maple Avenue between Yosemite Avenue and Center Street starting May 6 and running weekly through Oct. 28. The parking lot next to the Rust Salon will also be blocked off for market use.
It is being coordinated by Deputy City Manager Toni Lundgren.
Besides fresh farm products there will be other vendors as well as entertainment. The concept is modeled more like the street markets in Tracy and Modesto.
Unlike previous downtown markets it is just not for two to three months in the summer. Instead it will run for 26 weeks — basically half the year.
The market will start on Thursdays at 5:30 p.m.
The Maple Avenue location — arguably the nicest side street in downtown — is away from Library Park. The fact homeless gathered as opposed to camping in a far section of Library Park away from the farmers market where they couldn’t be legally chased away as they had the right to be there just like everyone prompted a number of people to slam the event on social media. They declared the market to be unsafe and the presence of homeless intimidating even though there had never been an instance where the homeless committed any crime.
The new Market on Maple is part of a stepped up city presence in downtown. The City Council recently authorized buying the former public health’s services building and adjoining parking lot from San Joaquin County as a “satellite” city hall.
Is it a hollow gesture
by City of Manteca?
And now for an item that could qualify as fodder for Ripley’s Believe it or Not.
The city, to its credit, has been posting some of its notices in Spanish as well as English on Facebook and the city’s website. In the past it has included videos also being done in Spanish.
A number of city residents do have limited English reading skills. And while there are others in such a situation, the largest number are likely Spanish speaking.
On Wednesday the city posted a notice in Spanish — in addition to English — asking for people to apply for the Youth Advisory Committee, Public Safety Committee, Tax Oversight Committee, and the Parks and Recreation Commission.
To be clear, there is no law requiring applicants being able to speak or read English to be considered for an appointment.
California’s original constitution was written in both English and Spanish. It included a provision that all state government documents be produced in both languages as well. That stayed in effect until the 1870s when the requirement was dropped during a constitutional convention.
Someone pointed that perhaps potential applicants might be able to speak English but not read it.
OK, but what about the obvious?
If they can’t read English how would they be able to serve on a committee of a commission unless the city opted to provide translations of all material in Spanish?
And what about communication with staff, other commission members or the general public attending meetings that aren’t bilingual? is the city planning on providing translators?
Those questions alone makes the Spanish translation of the applications being open nothing more than a hollow gesture to score points for inclusion.
To contact Dennis Wyatt, e email firstname.lastname@example.org