By John Flynn
New name, same jank
Sacramento can’t decide what to call itself. On March 10, the slogan on the 130-foot water tower alongside Interstate 5 abruptly changed from “The City of Trees”—a designation affirmed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology over 24 other cities of trees—to “America’s Farm to Fork Capital,” a more froofy title inspired by Sac’s fresh food-beer-coffee-weed scene and naked “world-class city” ambitions. Whatever. Days later, news emerged that Old Sacramento business interests were lobbying for a major investment and, potentially, a new name. One idea? “The Front.” Sounds shady. But not, like, under-a-tree shady.
Drinking and donating
On March 12, Capitol Beer Fest attracted 120 brewers and more than 7,000 people to guzzle suds on the Fifth and H streets bridge overlooking the Railyards. Event organizer Larisa Perryman estimated that patrons consumed roughly 3,720 gallons of brew (a half-gallon each). Proceeds could reach $150,000, she added, which would benefit Runnin’ for Rhett, a nonprofit that provides after-school fitness programs to 60 schools and will host a 5K at Sacramento City College on April 2. Shoutouts to all the philanthropists who woke up with dry mouths and sunburns on Monday.
Led by insufferable twerp Paul Ryan, Republicans unveiled the American Health Care Act on March 6. The Obamacare replacement will raise premiums on older, sicker, poorer patients (many in red, rural districts) and rip insurance away from an estimated 24 million Americans by 2026, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. All to finance $275 billion in tax cuts for the wealthiest 2 percent over the next decade. Ryan’s heartlessness merits a doctor check his pulse—which he can afford thanks to the taxpayer-funded coverage he denies his constituents.
– 24 million
On March 7, the Sacramento City Council approved a $40 million measure to outfit all police officers with body cameras, 890 in all. Officers should be fully equipped by September. Body cameras provide a valuable look into police conduct, not only for concerned residents, but also officers seeking to avoid false accusations. A good step, so long as the SPD doesn’t cherry-pick what footage to release as they did after the April 8, 2016, shooting death of Dazion Flenaugh.
Assemblyman Jim Cooper has a weakness for soft rock. As the Sacramento Bee reported last week, the Elk Grove Democrat accepted more than $9,000 worth of gifts last year from lobbyists, including seats in AT&T’s corporate box to see Paul McCartney and Maroon 5 at Golden 1 Center. Disney and Comcast also treated him to trips to Disneyland and Universal Studios, respectively. From nonlobbyists, he received more than $8,000 in sponsored trips to Australia and Maui. All that free leisure ought to have him relaxed and ready to make totally unbiased legislative decisions.