Author Archives: Michael Fitzgerald

Michael Fitzgerald

Mike Fitzgerald is The Record’s award-winning metro columnist. His column runs in the paper three times a week. Born in San Francisco, he was raised in Stockton. His column covers diverse beats including, sometimes, the offbeat.

A church in Stockton’s DNA

In today’s column I didn’t get much into the schism in the Methodist Church that underlied the founding of Grace United Methodist Church in pioneer Stockton. But the schism explains why the church was founded and why it moved north. In 1844, as churches do, the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church split into [...]

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An SF Supe’s promising homeless measure

A San Francisco Supervisor has come up with what seems like a comnon-sense plan to reduce homelessness. Worth a look by Stockton policy makers (and voters) is the “Housing not Tents” ballot measure. Reports KQED: “The measure would permit the city to remove tents, provided it offers specific shelter or housing opportunities to the people [...]

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McNerney joined House sit-in

Life’s not all sweetness and solar panels. Sometimes you have to get in the face of recalcitrant Republicans and demand desperately needed change. And that presumably is why Congressman Jerry McNerney, D-Stockton, participated in the historic House sit-in to protest the Republicans’ do-nothing stance on gun control. McNerney issued a statement. An excerpt: “My Democratic [...]

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A movement to raise The Phoenix

    In 2010 I had some fun helping to solve the mystery of The Phoenix of Hiroshima, a historically significant boat that had vanished in the Delta. The 50-foot double-end ketch made international headlines in 1958 when its owner, radiation expert Earle L. Reynolds, sailed into the off-limits waters of Bikini Atoll to protest [...]

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“A long history of being out of sync”

That’s what City Manager Kurt Wilson said about Stockton vis-a-vis other cities in his annual budget message. For years Stockton outspent other comparable cities. Now, ironically, it is under-spending compared to them, locked into a misconceived post-bankruptcy budget that wrongly gauged competitive levels of public employee compensation. A federal judge signed off on it, so [...]

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The Bay Area’s exodus

“A recent poll revealed that an unsettling sense of yearning has descended on people in the Bay Area: About one-third of those surveyed by the Bay Area Council say they would like to exit the nine-county region sometime soon.” —The San Jose Mercury News, reporting that “the number of people leaving California for another state [...]

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Rare good news about pensions

  Gov. Jerry Brown found a way to stop CalPERS from undermining pension reform. The background: faced with absolutely budget-busting pension costs, Brown championed the Public Employee Pension Reform Act, or PEPRA, of 2012. The reforms arguably don’t go far enough. But they did eliminate the most egregious abuses such as pension spiking, and they [...]

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San Jose considers tiny houses

  San Jose, which has a jaw-dropping 4,063 homeless persons, wants to give tiny houses a try. “San Jose officials said the tiny homes would be a “bridge” to permanent housing,” reports the East Bay Times. “Residents would be required to be enrolled in case management services and have housing vouchers. Officials estimate each home [...]

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Loving to hate the Westlands

  The Westlands, the too-powerful southwest-Valley water district ever-scheming to take more Delta water — and species like that “worthless minnow” be damned — is almost too perfect in its way. Though far from the only culprit, the Westlands’ clever machinations have helped to corrupt state regulatory agencies and to bring the entire Delta estuary [...]

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The columnist on Insight

…With Beth Ruyak, yesterday. My piece leads off around 1:32. Click here to hear it.

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    Michael Fitzgerald

    Mike Fitzgerald is The Record’s award-winning metro columnist. His column runs in the paper three times a week. Born in San Francisco, he was raised in Stockton. His column covers diverse beats including, sometimes, the offbeat. Read Full
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