Georgia Perry

Staff Writer

Doing A 180 On Homelessness

Carol and Rebel, two homeless people living in Santa Cruz. Photo by Chip Scheuer.

Permanent Supportive Housing is a model for solving the problem of homelessness, and it is the backbone of a national grassroots effort called the 100,000 Homes Campaign. With this model, homeless individuals are put into housing—literally, “Here’s an apartment, here’s a key,” no questions asked—and wrapped in any and all supportive services they may need for the rest of their lives until they die, hopefully with dignity and indoors. Santa Cruz has just joined the campaign with its own Project 180/180.

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Musician Balks at City’s Admissions Tax

On Sunday, June 10, Bay Area singer songwriter Melody Walker held a free show at the Backstage Lounge in Santa Cruz. The catch? She hadn’t intended the show to be free. After what she calls a strange “shakedown” voicemail from the city asking for a pre-show deposit on the estimated total admission sales, Walker investigated. She didn’t like what she found out and opted to play for free rather than give a cut to the gov.

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Local Businesses Use Square

Firefly customer Kassondra Sheppard uses Square. By Georgia Perry

“I’m sorry.”
“I shouldn’t be doing this.”
“It’s all I have.”

The all-too-familiar refrains of the regular credit card user may soon be put to rest thanks to an entirely different plastic invention, a little white square about the size of a thumbnail. 

In general, smaller establishments prefer cash transactions because they cost the businesses nothing, while each credit card swipe costs businesses a certain percentage on top of the monthly fee they pay just to have the ability to read cards with what is called a merchant account. The thinking is that if you’re really supporting small business, you’re not paying with a card. Problem is—who carries cash these days?

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Marine Biologist Explores ‘Blue Mind’

J. Nichols will host the second annual Blue Mind conference this weekend. (Photo by Georgia Perry)

Marine biologist J. Nichols suspects water puts us into a mildly meditative state. He has dubbed this sensation “blue mind”—as opposed to “red mind,” the edgy high that modern society puts us in, and “gray mind,” the numbed indifference that comes from looking at TV or the computer screen in an attempt to relax. “Surfing the web is not truly relaxing,” Nichols says. He believes if people can experience and appreciate the “blue mind” state the ocean grants us, it will result in big gains for conservations efforts.

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