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By Roz Rogoff

About this blog: In January 2002 I started writing my own online "newspaper" titled "The San Ramon Observer." I reported on City Council meetings and other happenings in San Ramon. I tried to be objective in my coverage of meetings and events, and...  (More)

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Of Cats and Hats

Uploaded: Mar 1, 2012
I wore my "cat hat" to the February 28 City Council meeting because I planned to speak in Public Comment about the cuts to animal shelters in Governor Brown's State Budget. Our State Assembly woman, Joan Buchanan, is the Chair of the Budget Subcommittee considering these cuts, and I wanted the City Council to write her a letter opposing them.

Fellow animal activist Tom Cushing told me the discussion on the cuts to the Haydon Act, which requires shelters hold stray animals for 4 to 6 days, would be held on March 14th, and the City Council's next meeting is March 13th. That would not give them much time to put it on the meeting agenda and prepare a letter for Buchanan, but it turned out Buchanan's subcommittee will be considering this on March 13th; so even if the Council is willing to write a letter to Buchanan, it would not get there before the 13th.

My readers, Tom's readers, and all animal lovers, should write to Joan Buchanan now urging her not to cut this funding, which won't save the State much money and would result in killing helpless lost pets without giving owners or rescue groups the time to save them. Cushing said animal groups will be demonstrating on the Statehouse lawn on the 13th.

I won't be at this demonstration. I plan to attend the meeting of the RDA Successor Agency on March 13th and maybe the City Council meeting. I plan to address Michael LeBlanc's request for a 90 day extension on his financial plans and I'll write my blog on that too.

The City Council meeting last Tuesday included a reception for Carol Rowley and Mayor Abram Wilson. I got there early for that. It was held in Dougherty Valley, and I've already written how much I hate driving to the Dougherty Station after dark. This time I took the long way, up Bollinger Canyon Road from Alcosta. It takes twice as long as using Old Ranch Road, but I wouldn't have to make the U-Turn to get into the Dougherty Station parking lot.

As usual I underestimated where to turn and turned too soon and had to turn around and continue on. I make that mistake all the time, but I got there without any other problems.

Lots of older women at the reception were wearing red hats. Shirley Ernest even came over to show me the visor she was wearing was red on top.

My cat hat is black and red with a checkerboard cat in the front. You can see it and me in the TV29 replay of the meeting at 7:30 am Friday morning or 7:30 pm Sunday or Wednesday nights. I thought I looked very good in my cat hat, but I stammered a lot reading Tom Cushing's email about the date of the budget discussions, which then turned out to be wrong.

I realized all of the other ladies wearing red hats were members of the Red Hat Society, and they thought I was one too. I could be, since the only conditions for membership are being a female over 50 and wearing a red hat. I certainly qualified for that.

So tonight I went to the Red Hat Society website and started to join. I found that Red Hatters have moved beyond merely wearing red hats. This is a big organization with a $20 annual membership. The website is full of cutesy names and graphics. Red Hat ladies are lots of fun, and I'm not much into fun. Maybe I should "lighten up," but I'm not ready for that yet.
What is it worth to you?


Posted by Bob P, a resident of another community,
on Mar 2, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Lighten up Roz!!!!!!!!

Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Mar 2, 2012 at 2:57 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.


I'm trying to lighten my weight. Maybe my personality will lighten up along with my weight.


Posted by wiz, a resident of San Ramon,
on Mar 5, 2012 at 5:33 pm

I was at Buchananâ??s pancake breakfast on Feb 25 in San Ramon. I mainly went because Iâ??ve always been curious about what was on top of the hill behind the shopping center on Alcosta and the boulevard.

During the Q&A, a young lady asked about Brownâ??s proposed repeal of the Hayden Act, however her question crumbled into an emotional short speech about innocent animals having to die. Buchananâ??s reply caused me to think of the â??Buchanan doesnâ??t like animalsâ? blog. Buchanan really is too much (or rather, not enough, but thatâ??s not an expression).

First, Buchanan said that Brown doesnâ??t plan to repeal the Hayden Act, he just plans not to fund it, as though that makes it okay. She said that the best thing to do is to write our politicians. As she addressed the question, she looked out the windows, her voice lowered and drifted off, as though she was boring herself as much as most of what she had said that morning was boring some of us. I thought, write to politiciansâ?¦..like her? Why would I write her a letter sheâ??ll never read? Here she is in the room. Why canâ??t we just talk to her? Apparently she didnâ??t want that.

I supposed itâ??s still good to write to her for statistical purposes. I canâ??t stand it when her staff says, â??well, thatâ??s what our constitutes want. We know from the number of letters and e-mails we get.â? I never go the idea they READ the letters.

Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Mar 5, 2012 at 11:36 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.


Thanks for replying. The person at the pancake breakfast is another Safe-Cat foster. We are all worried that cutting the budget will cut the time strays are kept at shelters. From what you just wrote it sounds like Buchanan doesn't care.

Buchanan doesn't pay attention to her letters or phone messages. Safe-Cat's President called her office a few years ago to support the Spay & Neuter bill and Buchanan wrote back agreeing with her opposition to it.


Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Danville,
on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:27 pm

Tom Cushing is a registered user.

Thanks, Roz, for keeping the beat on this issue. I was mistaken about the date of the first Assembly hearing and rally -- it's March 13th. Please do contact Ms. Buchanan -- as her website says: the CA budget should reflect our values. Not to suggest language to anybody (but that'd be pretty good language to include in your letters).

There will also be Senate-side hearings later in the spring. I spoke to one of the staffers who said that this issue is commanding a lot of comment and attention -- there may be a hearing devoted to Hayden, alone -- despite the fact that it's theoretical $23M pales beside the other mandates totaling $829M that actually gets spent.

Here's an Update from the Bark magazine blog: Web Link

-- there's also a very informative facebook page called Sutter's Friends." (Sutter is the Guv's own pooch). Web Link

Posted by Roz Rogoff, the San Ramon Observer,
on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:42 pm

Roz Rogoff is a registered user.


When you are out there with the protesters could you hand out flyers for the Pet Lovers' License Plate. I'm see if Judie Mancuso will be there and if she's planning to promote the license plate as a better way to cut down on pet overpopulation and shelter costs.

By the way I did my taxes last night and there's a California Spay and Neuter fund you can contribute to with your refund. I am contributing $50 from my state refund for low cost shelter spay and neuter clinics.


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