Editor, Manteca Bulletin,
Interesting problem in Woodward Park neighborhood - the residents have been waiting two years for a crosswalk; and, more time and money is needed to study the matter. This Manteca City Council dilemma sounds so familiar and is so old news.
The residents at the 500 block of North Lincoln Avenue, Frank Avenue, East Louise Avenue, and Mylnar Avenue have been waiting for decades for sidewalks. (Pacific Road has waited at least 30 years.) These one-time rural areas were annexed to Manteca in the 70s and 80s because they were essentially surrounded by the community. Only in the past 10 years have some sidewalks been installed along some frontages, while others have waited 40 years.
The basic reason for this all-too-common lack of response from city hall is simply that there is and has been a lack of municipal funds to install the sidewalks in a reasonable period of time. These areas of the community were annexed many years ago (decades in most cases) for a number of reasons, but their commonality is a fiscal one. In others, the property tax revenue from these areas was supposed to increase the city revenue stream to allow for the neighborhood improvements. Unfortunately, in those 40 years, the revenue stream was diverted to non-neighborhood related purposes, and to make up for the lack of funds for such things as police officers, new fire stations, etc.
So, waiting two years for crosswalks is not such an unusual situation. Nor are the stalling and the conducting of more studies by city hall to cover up the fact that the revenue stream is drying up.
Folks, the city hall train has left the economic recession station once again and is on the same track of municipal management and near-starvation budgeting that has diminished our service levels for decades.
April 14, 2013