Newly learned tools of the trade |

Newly learned tools of the trade

Paul Middlebrook, Tahoe Daily Tribune

I got many calls, letters and emails (none from the IRS, attorneys, etc.) in response to my first column as the Tribune publisher. In spite of that, I am doing another one.

I asked one of our editors what he thought of my first column. He said it was fine but I should “be careful when creating a compound modifier with an adverb.” Gosh, how many times have I heard THAT in my life? Seems like sound advice.

Congrats to the Tribune editorial staff. Several weeks ago I asked them to give me a local paper E and they have. We are on the move to get as many names and faces in the paper as we can each day. We want to provide you with as much local content as we physically can. Nothing changes overnight but I think we are on the right track.

The other day, one of our readers said, “You’re certainly not the San Francisco Chronicle.” I agreed that we’re not and also agreed that South Lake Tahoe is not the Bay Area. That’s why I moved here 22 years ago.

One fun feature we added recently is “15 Minutes,” which appears each Friday on the cover of our C section. We want to showcase not just the South Shore’s movers and shakers but also its odd ducks and unsung heroes. If you have any suggestions on people we can profile, give us a call.

Speaking of local stories, how about the new ice arena? Just when you were getting a little cynical about the city, it completes this voter-supported project. Kudos to longtime city employee Gary Moore, who spearheaded the project along with a very capable staff. With Gary at the helm this thing will be a success. (An aside E Is there anyone out there who doesn’t like Gary Moore?)

You have to love a small town: The Sierra House mural on Highway 50 has gotten as much press as any other story in the last several weeks. Sure hope they can save it.

Something else that will be in the news a lot will be a proposed increase in the transient occupancy tax, or TOT, paid by motel and hotel patrons. The city is trying to deal with a $2 million shortfall and at least one TOT measure is likely to hit the ballot in November.

The amount of the tax hike will be very contentious and I hope you follow the issue closely, as it could have an important impact on our infrastructure and tourism. If you are unclear on some of these issues as they come up, call one of our council members and get some advice and information. Here’s the deal: First, register to vote; second, study and weigh all the issues and candidates; and third, vote! It’s your community, so jump in.

Congratulations go out to Travis Ramos for finally being recognized as the U.S. freestyle champion at the event held March 25. Thanks go out to John Rice, general manager of Sierra-at-Tahoe Ski Resort, for being the catalyst in correcting the error. Any of you out there who work in public relations might want to apply to the U.S. Ski Team.

More local kids…. Sue Yang, a valued member of the Lake Tahoe Unified School District board, is a proud mom. Her son Benjamin, a South Tahoe High student and member of the JROTC program, received a $1,000 award from the chief of naval education and training for his academic excellence. Good job Benjamin and congrats to mom and dad. … Jackie Laurian became the first female pole-vaulter in Whittell High history. … Greg Bruso is throwing some heat down at UC Davis. He has an ERA of 1.95. (If you don’t know what ERA means, go ask Greg’s dad, Paul, over at Ernie’s.)

Finally, Tahoe Valley Elementary School triumphed after going down to the wire with Sierra House Elementary in the district spelling bee. Two of the words they spelled correctly were “xeric” and “sculpin” … words you undoubtedly use in everyday conversation. The only advice I can give to these spelling whizzes is to be careful when creating a compound modifier with an adverb!

Best wishes and good health to my friend Peter Butler. See you in the paper in a couple of weeks.

— Paul Middlebrook is publisher of the Tribune.

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