District says fees fair
Increased facility fees previously approved for the San Mateo Union High School District to cover costs are reasonable and within legal parameters, according to an accounting firm analysis released the week of Dec. 27, 2008.
The increases were aimed to cover all costs associated with using a facility — lights, custodial services, security and equipment. Cities posed a number of questions after the approval, specifically if the fines are fair under California law which prohibits a school district from making a profit off the facilities. In addition, local sports groups feared the costs would be too great for many players to carry. Perry-Smith Accountants were secured by the district’s attorney Sean Absher to review the fees compared to the cost for services in a report finished Friday.
The report looked at the allowable charges under the Civic Center Act in the California Education Code and concluded charges were aligned with costs. In some instances, the allowable hourly rate was higher than being charged, according to the report.
An independent report was sought to put to rest questions, said Deputy Superintendent of Business Elizabeth McManus who added the district, now with validation, will move forward with the implementation of the fees.
‘Psychic’ may see more charges
A San Mateo psychic shop owner accused of taking more than $80,000 from an elderly client for “special prayers” to prevent the death of both their husbands saw herself at a preliminary hearing in February after resetting the date at a court appearance the week of Dec. 27, 2008.
Janet Adams, who previously served prison time for defrauding a San Mateo County woman, was charged with one count of theft from an elderly person with an enhancement of excessive taking more than $65,000. She pleaded not guilty.
Adams owned the Psychic and Crystal Vision shop in San Mateo’s Laurelwood Shopping Center. She was arrested after an 85-year-old woman told authorities she visited Adams’ shop in for a tarot card reading and continued visits in which the “psychic” would request money in return for prayers to keep her husband from succumbing to a heart attack. On another visit, Adams reportedly said her own husband was hospitalized and would die without $9,000 for treatment. The woman reported a total take of $80,330 from January through December when her husband noticed the substantial bank withdrawals and learned about her payments to Adams.
Escaped inmate surrenders in S.F.
The San Mateo County inmate who escaped from a Maple Street transitional facility the previous week surrendered to detectives in San Francisco the the week of Dec. 27, 2008.
Charlie Clay Johnson, 59, turned himself in at the San Francisco Police Department at approximately 1:15 p.m. Dec. 26,2008, and was taken back to the Maguire Correctional Facility in Redwood City.
Johnson, who was serving a one-year sentence for drug possession at the time he fled, was discovered missing just before 11 p.m. Dec. 20 by officers conducting a routine security check of the minimum security re-entry facility at 1580 Maple St. in Redwood City.
Johnson had served time in San Mateo County on and off for more than a dozen years, said then-Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.
From the archives highlights stories originally printed five years ago this week. It appears in the Friday edition of the Daily Journal.