Compiled by Nick Sestanovich
75 years ago
Clyne and Simon Go To Washington, D.C. To Ask For Action (Aug. 27, 1942)
Mayor Charles Clyne and City Attorney Harold Simon left Wednesday for Washington D.C. on a mission authorized at a special meeting of the City Council held Tuesday night.
They will try to hasten government action on Benicia schools, housing, fire equipment, sewers and water and to clear up misunderstandings that have arisen with federal agencies over sewer trunk lines and water needs of the city.
Also expected to join Clyne and Simon at Washington is Burton Rickey, who has spent much time in Benicia recently as a representative of the Jefferson Finance Company, of Los Angeles, which wants to erect 1,000 homes here. It will be Rickey’s third trip to Washington since the Benicia project was planned, and he too, will seek to cut government red tape on priorities for the proposed housing construction.
Benicia’s mayor and city attorney are expected to confer with Senator Downey immediately upon their arrival in Washington and enlist his help in reaching the appropriate department heads.
During the mayor’s absence, Paul Wetmore is Benicia’s acting mayor.
50 years ago
Benicia Park Opens, First Fish Caught (Aug. 24, 1967)
California’s newest recreation area– the Benicia State Park– opened with a gusto last Saturday morning and Ranger-in-Charge Lorin Forsyth reported attendance for the first five days exceeded expectations.
The honor of catching the first fish at newly-reopened Dillon Point went to W.J. Jefferson of Oakland. He caught a 12-pound striped bass.
The park opens at 6 a.m. daily during the summer month with an attendant on duty at the turnstile-gate. The fee per day is $1 per car regardless of the number of accupants. (Current editor’s note: occupants?)
Any vehicle with a trailer cannot get through the gate without assistance of the attendant.
The opening marked the completion of the 367 acre park’s Phase 1 construction which includes 75 picnic tables strategically placed to provide scenic views of the Straits, Southampton Bay and the nearby hills. Charcoal braziers also will be available.
There is initial space for 230 cars in six lots.
Two paths lead the way to Dillon Point, known to be one of the best fishing spots in the county. Anglers can look forward to stripers, sturgeon and flounder, according to Forsyth.
In 1962, Gov. Edmund G. Brown assented to a request by Senator Luther E. Gibson and $500,000 was placed in the state budget for initial development in the park.
25 years ago
BUSD finds it’s in pretty good shape (Aug. 23, 1992)
By David Hagerty
The mood was oddly calm Thursday night among Benicia school board trustees as they approved a tentative budget for the 1992-92 school year.
Unlike the battle being waged in Sacramento between legislators and Gov. Wilson, few questions were raised and even less emotion shown in the Benicia Unified School District board room.
“After considering the surrounding districts, this budget looks remarkably good,” trustee Laurel Fronek said.
Unlike schools in Vallejo and Contra Costa County, Benicia is not anticipating any employee layoffs, increases in average class size, or academic program cuts.
In fact, the budget passed unanimously after less than an hour of discussion by board members and without any comment from residents.
That was a pleasant contrast to last year’s budget forum, when parents protested the school board’s decision to charge students $1 a day for busing to and from school.
Fee increases for the 1992-93 school year are still being considered, both for transportation and for driver’s education. But no one is sure whether they’ll be necessary.
The full articles of these and other stories are available on microfilm at the Benicia Public Library.