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SALINAS TEAMS UP WITH BFI 06-29-10 22:15 a.v.

In an effort to save services while cutting budget costs, Salinas residents will now have to pay more for their garbage service.   Salinas city council members will now join forces with BFI through a package program which is expected to allow the city to continue certain services which will be funded through and managed by BFI.  The one dollar a week, $4 a month rate increase, will reportedly go towards paying for graffiti abatement, street sweeping, code enforcement and saving a number of jobs in the city.

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A Salinas non-profit, that provides fresh produce donations to area food banks, has received 2 grants totaling $21,000.  The Monterey Peninsula Foundation awarded Ag Against Hunger a 20-thousand-5-hundred dollar grant and a $500 grant was issued from the B.G. Mayer Fund of the Community Foundation for Monterey County.   The grants are expected to be used to cover the nonprofit’s operating expenses.


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No one was injured when a female pizza deliverer was robbed at knife-point Monday night  on the Eastside of Santa Cruz.   Police say the woman stopped her car at the intersection of Pilkington Avenue and Murray Street at around 7:20 p.m., when a man riding a B-M-X bike toward her, stopped at the driver’s side door of her car, brandished a knife, and demanded money.  The robber fled after the delivery woman handed him a dollar bill.  The woman returned to work at a downtown pizza place prior to calling 9-1-1.

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SEIU AGREEMENT REACHED IN S.C. 06-29-10 21:25 a.v.

A new agreement was reached this week with the city of Santa Cruz and the Service Employees International Union.    The agreement, which includes a 1.3 million dollars in savings, is awaiting final approval to close a projected 2 million dollar deficit.   Service employees were asked by city officials to forgo a scheduled 5% cost-of-living increase next year and take a 2nd year of 10% pay cuts through furloughs.  The union, whose contract is up in November, was hoping for at least part of it’s scheduled pay hike, but had already agreed to the furloughs.  A final vote is slated for July 13th.

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A Central Coast burglar was re-arrested Monday after he was inadvertently released from Monterey County Jail last month.  34-year old Morgan Hicks, who was arrested in fall of 2007, was mistakenly released from jail through a clerical error over a reported bail amount. Hicks, also known as the “shovel burglar”, allegedly used a 5-foot shove to break into 20 homes in Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito counties between June and September 2007.   Hicks was arrested after failing to appear in court to increase his bail.  Detectives say he is suspected for burglarizing at least one home in Santa Cruz County on Friday, and plan to add charges to his current case.  He is set to appear back in court on July 29th, he faces over 30 years in state prison.

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