Thursday, April 5, 2012
POPULAR GUY… Lonely Squid was prowling Facebook the other day – then recoiled all eight tentacles at once. That’s because Squid came across the virtual forum for that thing everyone in Salinas is whispering about: allegations that a former Salinas High School drug counselor, Gilbert Olivares, hid a video camera in his office and shot sex tapes starring unsuspecting high school students. Leave it to high schoolers to come to his rescue.
Supporters on March 14 launched a Facebook page, “Free gilbert olivares,” calling on Salinas High students to “speak up about how gilberts allegations are false.” But most of the posts are critical.
“… I never got weird vibes from him, but facts are facts,” wrote one student. From another: “You need to realize that when he touched you it wasn’t out of love it was because he’s a sick fucker.” Meanwhile another page, this one with the user name “Gilbert Olivares” and his mugshot, appears to have been taken offline. In the “about” section: “I used to work at Salinas High. I even had an office there.” Oh, the wacky humor of it all.
As Olivares preps for a preliminary hearing, here’s hoping the students will head back to government class (where maybe the teacher will also correct their grammar). That whole innocent-until-proven-guilty part is pretty important.
SPEAKING OF THINGS NOBODY WANTS TO TALK ABOUT… Squid hates to say the word “bug” around fruit-company folks, but one has been planted in Squid’s ear. Cal Am, according to the rumor, is negotiating the future of the Peninsula’s would-be desal plant with Dole.
David Hart, chair of the Monterey County Water Resources Agency board of directors, was instructed by his higher-ups not to vote on anything relating to Cal Am to avoid a conflict of interest because his employer, Dole, is in negotiations with Cal Am. (At least they learned their lesson. Former board chair Steve Collins goes to court April 17.)
When Squid asked Hart if he knows what they’re negotiating, he said, “Not exactly.” What Squid does know: There’s a piece of Dole property near Armstrong Ranch north of Marina, and Cal Am sees dollar signs there. “Cal Am did approach Dole. They came to Dole. I know they’ve had one meeting discussing that piece of property,” Hart says. “What for and exactly what it is, I’m not sure.”
Well, Squid’s got a hunch: a desal plant!
Squid couldn’t get anyone from Dole on the phone to confirm. But Cal Am spokeswoman Catherine Bowie says Cal Am is in hush-hush talks "with several property owners in the North Marina area." Squid can predict the take-home lesson from those backroom dealings: When the public process fails, circumvent the public.