Bureaucrat Beat: Vets Count, Bear Answers, Dense Bankers

For this Veteran’s Day, the Bureaucrat Beat staff wanted to extend our admiration of those who serve in the military. We feel they protect our right to investigate and talk about sometimes outrageous but publicly important matters in our lives. Over the years, 30 plus of them, we have found that aggressive exposure of facts makes a material difference in our lives. So, thank you, Veterans.

Hey, here’s a way you can say thank you. The MOMS Club in Bishop will send a Christmas Pack to our people in the military. They have asked for Christmas cards for our soldiers. If you want to write one or a dozen, you can drop them off at KSRW. We’ll forward them to the MOMS.

After a year or more of useless talk, the Mammoth Town Council finally voted to re-hire Steve Searles to manage bears. Some residents say it’s about time. A comment emailed by Pat Strasburg of Mammoth Lakes says this:

We have a large bear that visits our Condo Complex every few nights and can open the bear proof latch on the dumpster faster than the humans who live here. He comes and goes as he pleases just breaking a hole in the wood fence. The bear has been in the parking lot at dusk when people were coming and going and has spent a day in a large tree near the spa. When he finally decided to stay under a porch the police were called and the shot him with a pellet that sent him running into the local neighborhood. I don’t know where he went that day but he has been back at the dumpster several times so it didn’t slow him down, I have owned my Condo for 20 years and have never seen anything like this.

That’s from Pat Strasburg, Mammoth.

Okay. Issued addressed.

Here’s one that no one has addressed. The banking firms bailed out by the big $700 billion deal in Washington? They’ve spent more than $30 million of that on…lobbying the federal government!! If these people can’t figure out for themselves that spending taxpayers’ dollars on parties and lobbying is bad form, someone needs to tell them.

On another note, doctors have told Medicare that their pathetic backlog of reimbursements has made the practice of medicine almost impossible. According to the Los Angeles Times, in the most extreme cases, doctors have not been paid since February. Others are owed hundreds of thousands of dollars. Seems another bureaucratic fiasco has interfered with important care and payment for those on Medicare.

A new system with new procedures and numbers went into effect for Medicare, but the agency itself failed to follow through to make things work. A shameful turn of events that jeopardizes the very health of the elderly. Not to mention the jeopardy to countless clinics and physicians.

Two hopeful incidents in local government recently. In Mammoth Lakes, the Town Council has leaned toward helping local artists and musicians escape the burden of taxation of their meager income from performances. Officials still have work to do to come up with an income number beyond which they won’t tax. We in the Bureaucrat Beat newsroom hope the Council will lean toward generosity when it comes to the arts. Over the years, our local artists and musicians have made our lives better. Most of them don’t make a lot of money. Some offer very occasional performances, but we need them.

In Inyo County, the Public Works Department allowed for more time before they switch over to the new water tanks. Citizens fear increased water pressure might blow their pipes or appliances. They need time to understand the issue and prepare.

Interim Public Works Director Doug Wilson, as we reported earlier, said officials would take time needed to help the public. That’s hopeful.

After all, the public is what it’s all about – from musicians to homeowners. Bureaucratic convenience and revenue generation comes next.

With that, this is Benett Kessler signing off for Bureaucrat Beat where we await your word on our lives in the Eastern Sierra and beyond.

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