Same-sex marriage, the Fresno City Council's vote to outsource residential trash collection, and the possibility of a new job for Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer all sparked an active online discussion among readers.
Here are the top stories of the past week, along with selected comments posted by readers at fresnobee.com.
What happened: More than two years after a federal judge in San Francisco ruled California's Proposition 8 unconstitutional, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to decide whether it will take up the landmark gay marriage case.
What it means: If the Supreme Court elects not to grant review, gay and lesbian Californians who have waited for years to wed are preparing to do so as early as this week. The court is expected to announce its decision Monday.
What readers said:
"I just don't see how two men or two women being married affects me negatively. The people who voted against gay marriage are anachronism who belong back in the 1950's supporting the right of local businesses to post "Whites Only" signs above their doors."
"I don't hold out much hope for a moral decision by the Supremes. I hate to be pessimistic but, the "gay-ing" of America is well under way!"
"Gay marriage will very soon become law because it cannot be logically denied under the constitution and because younger citizens overwhelmingly support it. On legal and political grounds, loonies, you lose."
What happened: A sharply divided Fresno City Council late Thursday night voted to hand over the city's residential trash service to a private hauler as part of yet another budget-fixing plan.
What it means: The 4-3 vote was merely the first of three that are necessary before the contract with locally based Mid Valley Disposal is official. The next vote is next Thursday. The council majority approved a resolution of intent to outsource the city's home trash service in exchange for a $1.5 million signing bonus and about $2.5 million in annual franchise fees from Mid Valley.
What readers said:
"Mid Valley will do a great job. Not paying union pensions, vacations,sick leave, overtime, will in the long run save millions. As far as the rates staying the same. Well if the contract is good for 15 yrs I'll be very encouraged."
"Guess you missed the part on how Mid Valley would have the right to 2% annual increases in rates. Yeah, that's good for the customer. The Mayor was suppose to give us a 15% rate cut anyways, but she went against the wishes of the utility review committee. Sorry but the only winner in this is Mid Valley."
"Short term the city gets a nice check in the form of franchise fees from the private hauler. In the long term the city residents will eventually get fleeced with higher rates from the hauler because those franchise fees will guarantee they have the residents by the short hairs. Is this a good deal for the residents of Fresno?"
Is Dyer leaving?
What happened: A Bay Area TV station reported that Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer is among the leading candidates to be San Jose's new police chief.
What it means: Dyer, Fresno's police chief since mid-2001, said he hasn't applied for the San Jose job and has no plans to leave town. He did acknowledge, though, that he talked several months ago to a San Jose assistant city manager about the retirement of that city's chief.
What readers said:
"He needs to retire ... Can't believe the city couldn't find a replacement? .... $200k a year is a load of crap.. Move on and give the next in line a chance...."
"I'm glad he's not leaving. He does a lot with what he has. You want him to do a better job, then he needs more officers and more funds to stay current in meeting the demands of the office and the increasing crime. As for those who don't like him that work for him ... too bad, he's the boss, it's not his job to make you like him, his job is to establish policies to protect the people within his jurisdiction."
Catching Up is compiled by Bee editors. Go to fresnobee.com/catchingup/ to comment or learn more about these stories.