Comment history

Scott Wedel says...

"The teams with the 18 best times recorded this season will qualify for the state field"

Not quite, 18 best teams for the category of high school size So Hayden needs to be among top 18 of best 2A relay times of which there are about 60 2A schools.

On Making state a team goal for Hayden track

Posted 25 April 2017, 10:16 p.m. Suggest removal

Scott Wedel says...

From The Independent's article on Britain's tax scheme:

"According to the Government’s own figures, solar power is expected to become the cheapest form of electricity generation sometime in the 2020s."

The controversy is that government is seeking to tax the rooftop solar electricity used by the business in the building. So it isn't about removing some government subsidy, but about government extending it's taxing authority to electricity moving from roof to floor without a financial transaction.

Scott Wedel says...

Where in world is this proposed underpass? East side it is at a bridge where you could walk under the highway if willing to risk getting wet.

Seems to me that Hwy 40 and Downhill/Riverside Dr needs a stop light if getting across hwy 40 is viewed as too dangerous for those on foot or bike. If a road is too dangerous to cross on bike or foot then it is also getting dangerous to cross in a car. That area has an increasing number of residences and the highway makes it dangerous for kids in that neighbor to go to each other's houses.

Or if pedestrian access is required then rest of world builds a pedestrian overpass as it costs a fraction of an underpass.

On Our view: Now’s the time to connect

Posted 25 April 2017, 3:46 p.m. Suggest removal

Scott Wedel says...

Dan,

Germany made a horrific financial decision guaranteeing investors a rate of return regardless of amount of electricity produced. Someone line the Black Forest that put solar collectors is guaranteed good return on investment despite never getting any sun.

Spain made a similar terrible decision. England has changed rules so many times that I don't know details of this recent controversy, but they had similar programs.

Fortunately, the US has state run PUCs controlling rates. I am not aware of any state guaranteeing rate of return on green investment regardless of electricity produced. In the past, some states have forced their utilities to buy a certain amount of green energy at certain above market prices, That is why Altamont Pass in the early 80s had lots of windmills that then went unrepaired when that subsidy program ended.

But currently green energy is getting $9.2 Billion in the US per 3 months. It is a relatively safe investment because many parts of the country allow commercial customers to buy from their selected sources and they are willing to pay an extra cent or two per kwh for clean energy.

Note the story of Arizona's huge Navajo Power Station (coal) which is being shut down by owners because they no longer find enough customers in California.

Meanwhile Iowa is building a new high efficiency transmission line to Chicago to satisfy those customers wanting Iowa wind energy.

Scott Wedel says...

It was wrong of Friedman to disparage coal miners.

But, that doesn't mean that green energy isn't cost effective. The market argues the opposite. US invested $9.4 Billion in the first quarter of 2017. Even that was assisted by tax breaks then it still had to be close enough to cost effective that the tax breaks is what pushes it over the top.

There are ways to store solar power such as pumped storage where two reservoirs are linked and excess power is used to pump water up to run through generators when needed. Ironically, California has such facilities built to store excess nuclear power produced at night and to meet peak power during the day. Those facilities can store spare power produced at whatever time from whatever source.

There have also been batteries installed to stabilize power. It is typical of a large solar array to have batteries so that they can get a better price for their electricity by providing promised levels of power regardless of a passing cloud.

I search "damaged California grid" found nothing credible. Yes, California has an odd issue that in the Spring when temps are cool that it can generate more power than it needs, but that isn't a problem and hasn't damaged the grid. It happens too infrequently to spend the money on a solution to store that unused capacity. Once temps warm up in later Spring, Summer and Fall then solar power matches nicely with increased power demand from air conditioners.

Scott Wedel says...

"enthusiastically present the plan to the community"

BoE had enthusiasm for Overlook. Enthusiasm was not the problem. The problem was an inability to answer questions.

I think the 4/17 BoE meeting suggests that admin gave one set of "facts" to CC4E, but now Fall 2017 budget is based upon a different set of "facts". Admin also contradicted itself on SCE capacity in that meeting.

And it is disappointing that CC4E somehow never verified school capacity numbers. At their first forum there was a question of how could SSMS be significantly over capacity with no apparent impact. With Fall 2016 resulting in SSMS having 600+ enrollment then it should have been even more of a priority to explain what is actual SSMS capacity and what happens at what level of enrollment. I've searched CC4E website and despite their promises of being open and transparent, that isn't there, but that SSMS has capacity of 550 and is well over capacity is mentioned numerous times in their presentation.

Scott Wedel says...

"when city officials say they are running out of space to put employees in the current City Hall building downtown on 10th Street."

Typical government, keep hiring people until the money runs out. If there were productivity improvements typical of private industry then staff should be remaining same size or removing an employee or two.

An indication of longstanding incompetence if today is when records are being digitized so that they don't need as room consumed by file cabinets.

Also, for the cost of the building then it also becomes cheaper to outsource functions. I'd outsource building plan reviews as then we don't nearly always have wrong staffing levels depending upon whether local construction activity is up or down. And can probably find people with expertise in various Midwest cities that are not experiencing growth.

Scott Wedel says...

“The board is more united on this than anything else,” Dover said.

Well if board is united on her desire for Overlook then bond issue is DOA.

If Dover or anyone else on BoE is worried about time left then they should sooner rather than later respond to my analysis that district has been lying to the public about school capacity since at least Dec 2014.

That SCE has 25, not 23, classrooms. That SSMS has about 30, not 22, classrooms.

The 4/17 BoE meeting also revealed that district lacks money to achieve elementary school target of 20 students per classroom and instead has accepted apparently 22 for Fall 2017. Thus, SCE capacity is about 550, SPE 528 and SSMS at least 650.

Scott Wedel says...

Russell,

The better plan included using Heritage Christian School. Montessori Charter used it first and next Fall will apparently have 197 students there.

In truth, the problem is largely currently fixed. District is not planning on having classes in the modular classrooms at SCE next Fall. Between Montessori and 2012-2014 local collapse in birth rate means that elementary is solved until 5 years after local births return to peak 2007-2009 levels.

Middle schools is also solved because it is simply a lie that it has 550 capacity. That capacity calculation ignores classrooms that are being used to currently handle 632 students. Middle school won't have a capacity issue until at least 11 years after local births return to peak 2007-2009 levels.

Yeah, it would be bold to build classrooms that won't be used for years.

Scott Wedel says...

ACA health insurance could have limitations such as limited ability to sue for malpractice or having to go to certain hospitals in cities instead of offering local care. In essence, ACA insurance could be more like VA medical care which government has run at lower costs. Not that government should run ACA insurance, but, for example, Kaiser Permanente is generally 10-15% less, but is only allowed to sell health insurance in certain parts of Colorado. If Kaiser was allowed to sell to rural areas where they don't have a local presence, just as VA works, then rural areas could get best costs available in cities.