COMMUNITY OPINION: Residents play Whack-A-Mole with projects

Mary Zanger writes that residents should reject Strada Verde again.

This community opinion was contributed by resident Mary Zanger. The opinions expressed do not necessarily represent BenitoLink or other affiliated contributors. BenitoLink invites all community members to share their ideas and opinions. By registering as a BenitoLink user in the top right corner of our home page and agreeing to follow our Terms of Use, you can write counter opinions or share your insights on current issues.


I frequently want to hug my mailperson even when I find a Strada Verde or Betabel something in my mailbox. When I find those unwanted pieces, I feel like I’m playing a Whac-A-Mole game. I am referring to the game where a little mechanical mole pops up randomly out of a hole.  The point of the game is to swat the little guy with a rubber mallet before it pops up again out of another hole.

A brochure in the mailbox shows that Strada Verde has popped up again in spite of voters overwhelmingly rejected them in the last election. Their new game board announces that now they will no longer be using Highway 25. They proclaim that they are partnered with the Betabel project using the Highway 101 entry to connect through the back way to Strada Verde. Just like a mole they need to be whacked down again because local workers will not use a long way around to commute.

When a mole for new jobs pops up whack that guy too because that mole is for “build out” jobs only. Apparently, construction jobs will all be by contract.

How can Strada Verde bring jobs closer to home when it will be located 10 miles from town?  How can Strada Verde save commute time when roads are under city, county and state authorities? How can Strada Verde negotiate fees when the developer is the middleman and fees cut into his profit?

Why does this cute underground creature continue to pop up from new holes? It seems clearly that this creature has its eyes on profit. Look at the advantages: clean smog free air, abundant fresh water, access from established roads, cheaper county services and cheaper county taxes.

I hope the voter realizes the power in the rubber mallet. A person knows that his or her mallet has power because another mailbox brochure pleads, “Don’t sign it.”  Wow!  That really demonstrates the power in the mallet or vote.  Make sure you whack that “Don’t Sign It” mole by signing the petition to be on the ballot to let voters decide how Hollister grows.

Mary Zanger

I came to San Benito County as a bride and helped build out the Zanger family businesses, best known as Casa de Fruta on Highway 156. In the off seasons, I worked as a pharmacist in downtown Hollister. Now my work focuses on nudging my community to remember the power of fairness and justice that promote peace.