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From The Signal Archives: Cityhood and affirmative action

Posted: June 18, 2009 9:09 p.m.
Updated: June 19, 2009 4:30 a.m.

Editor’s note: As The Signal celebrates 90 years of service to the Santa Clarita Valley, we offer this peek into the SCV of days past. Following is from June 1984 in The Newhall Signal and Saugus Enterprise.

Wondering why we formed a city?
“The Santa Clarita Valley is fit for continued heavy development,” says a story, citing a report released by the county Department of Regional Planning.

“County planners, after considering a number of factors ... found that no reason exists to curtail growth in this area,” the story says.

“The study recognized potential restraints on future development — traffic congestion, for instance — but it concluded that no ‘insurmountable barriers,’ including finances, exist to thwart the growth needed to accommodate a projected increase in population.

“The target population for the SCV in the year 2000 is 165,000, compared to today’s 93,100,” the story says.

Affirmative action takes hold at COC
“Given the ‘unique’ nature of the Santa Clarita Valley, affirmative action seems to be progressing at an acceptable pace at College of the Canyons, according to a yearly report on the topic,” another story reads.

The school’s president, Ramon LaGrandeur, said the school was progressing well, “but can still be more aggressive.”

The article noted the school staff’s minority representation (8 percent of full-time staffers) is still below the 9.6 percent represented in the overall minority population of the Santa Clarita Valley.”

Who was that school board clerk again?
“Upset over recent test scores, parents of Canyon students are demanding a ‘complete review’ of the school’s program. Immediately,” reads another story.

The California Assessment Program test results released at the time showed Canyon High School far behind the other two high schools — Hart and Saugus — in the William S. Hart Union High School District.

“The results of this year’s California Assessment Program (CAP) testing for Canyon High School are ‘unacceptable to this community,’ states a petition circulated among local parents.

“However board clerk Howard McKeon said the parents are ‘distorting’ the test findings.

“McKeon said now is not the time for parents to ‘push the panic button.’

“‘Or throw the baby out with the bath water.’”

Mouse chases driver
“Some people just do not like mice. One woman dislikes them so much that when she discovered one in her car she pulled over and got out and refused to get back in as long as the mouse was still inside.”

After a highway patrol officer came to the scene, the unwilling driver asked the officer to call her husband to have him bring their other car for her to drive — and he could drive the mouse home.
Is someone missing a catapult?
“Two men were arrested Friday morning in connection with the theft of about $16,000 worth of video tape and medieval military hardware,” the story reads.

“One of the men, James E. Baker, 28, of Chatsworth, has admitted he stole the equipment, which reads like a list of accouterments for one of King Arthur’s knights.

“The assortment of swords, armor, javelins, shields and saddles was taken June 8.”

Bubonic Plague strikes SoCal
“The plague did not die out with the Middle Ages and the coming of the Renaissance,” according to a headline that week.

“Two persons in Los Angeles County have contracted the plague so far this year, but neither of them died; in fact, they are both in good condition.”

The article noted the area had a potential to be a “hot spot” because of its proximity to nature. The last outbreak was in 1979.

— Perry Smith



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