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Revised health resolution comes back to council

By: Joyia Emard, Loomis News Editor
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The Town of Loomis is taking another stab at the resolution supporting healthy eating and active living. Town manager Rick Angelocci circulated a revised version of the resolution, which he said he and “a couple of council members” worked on. The town wanted community input that was due by noon April 2. The original resolution was presented at the March council meeting and drew the ire of those attending who voiced opinions that it was not council’s business to be directing how people should eat. The revised resolution, along with public comments received, will be presented at the April 10 town council meeting. Town Manager Rick Angelocci said in the revised resolution items were removed that dealt with land use, zoning and planning issues. “We made it more to do with existing town documents, like the Trails and Bikeway Master Plan,” Angelocci said. The revised resolution “supporting healthy eating and active living” includes completing the three remaining features at Blue Anchor Park, and completing the related trail and bikeway from King Road to Sierra College Boulevard by partnering with other community groups; ensuring residents can “easily and safely walk, roll and/or bike” around the area; and improving street striping “from Shed to Shed.” Additionally, it calls for prioritizing, in the June budget, projects for trails and bikeways listed in Trails and Bikeway plan; expanding community access to facilities with joint use agreements and supporting new facilities, such as the new Del Oro Aquatic Complex. It also states, “support local community gardens and farmers markets;” and calls for working with the chamber of commerce to identify how to promote local restaurants that offer “healthy alternatives and local food.” The resolution also requests that the Park, Recreation and Open Space Committee’s new Recreation Task Force focus on these issues with staff and the community. No indications were included with the resolution as to what the cost of implementing the resolution would be. Public comments received by the town were mixed, although Kimberly Borum, said via email, “I find nothing wrong, defensive or dictatorial about this resolution. It’s a step in the right direction for the town and future generations.” Former mayor Russ Kelley made many revision suggestions to the resolution and in an email to town staff said, “While it is good for the town to support active living, it’s a step too far for local government to decide what people eat. Food is a matter of choice and that is not for government to make." Sonja Cupler, in an email to “The Loomis News,” said, “Businesses are leaving town, families are losing their homes and people are losing their jobs, yet the majority of our Town Council is decidedly focused on the luxuries of parks, trails and bikeways under the guise of being concerned about our nutrition and exercise.” Mike Bilek said, in an email, without knowing the costs, “it’s very hard to judge whether this is a good resolution or not for our town.” Town Council meets at 7:30 p.m., next Tuesday, April 10, at the Loomis Train Depot. For more information, call 652-1840.