By Noel Smith
Fifty Years of Change — A significant milestone for 2016 was the celebration of the City of Scotts Valleys 50th anniversary. Mayor Donna Lind and council members Randy Johnson and Dene Bustichi led the commemorative festivities with the 4th of July Parade and a BBQ on August 2. The Scotts Valley Times took part in the celebration with a special edition in July chronicling the beginnings of the city of Scotts Valley and those who had the vision to take those first steps.
Changes in leadership seemed to be the watchword for 2016. Valley Churches United appointed Lynn Robinson as its new Executive Director filling the shoes of its Founder, the late Annette Marcum. Robinson, in addition to being the former Santa Cruz Mayor (2014), served on the Santa Cruz City Council for eight years, and has held many positions on various government commissions.
The Scotts Valley Unified School District lost a popular Superintendent in 2016, Penny Weaver, who was replaced the equally popular and active Tanya Krause as Superintendent. The new San Lorenzo Valley High School Principal, Jeff Calden, took over from former principal Karen van Putten.
The 2016 elections resulted in a significant turnover for the Scotts Valley Unified District School Board with three new board members, Sue Rains (4-yr term), Roger Snyder and Corey Warner, both 2-Yr Terms). Elections also saw two new Scotts Valley Fire Protection District board members Daron Pisciotta and Russ Patterson; Bill Smallman taking a seat on the San Lorenzo Valley Water District board, and Jack Dilles replacing Dene Bustichi on the Scotts Valley City Council.
Other changes in 2016 for the city of Scotts Valley were the City Manager with Jenny Haruyama replacing the retired Steve Ando. Chief of Police John P. Weiss Retired Dec 9 with Lt. Steve Walpole Jr. serving as the interim chief.
Looking forward to 2017…
Measure “D,” the County Transportation Sales Tax that passed in November of 2016, will provide much needed funding to local governments, including the county, for repairing and improving local highways, streets and roads and for public transportation.
Finally, the Aptos Times besides news of the community has been honored to serve as the voice of the Scotts Valley Chamber of Commerce each month, and to providing its readers informative columns on many subjects such as finance, public safety, caring for your pet, book reviews and especially the “5th District Update” from your County Supervisor Bruce McPherson.
We look with great anticipation to 2017 and to the many stories we will be bringing you in the Scotts Valley Times.
Happy New Year!