By The Bakersfield Californian
Q: What's being built at the corner of Truxtun Avenue and Mohawk Street (the old Wood'ys)?
-- Jeri Kiggens
A: The old Wood'ys restaurant is being converted into an office building, said Bakersfield Planning Director Jim Eggert.
Q: I graduated from East Bakersfield High In 1957 and I pass by the school about once a week. Recently the school has been repainted and it looks great. But I passed by the other day and they have installed really tall fencing that appears to be 8 or 10 feet tall. Is the school experiencing break-ins?
-- Russell L. Rink
A: Kern High School District spokesman John Teves answered:
Installation of the wrought iron fencing was completed in June 2011. It replaced a chain link fence installed during a comprehensive modernization of East Bakersfield High that began in 2008.
The modernization was hampered by vandalism, in the form of "tagging." Repeated tagging of newly painted buildings forced repeated repainting, which increased project costs by about $70,000. The installation of the chain link fence resulted in a significant reduction of tagging.
The chain link fence remained in place until last summer when the wrought iron version was installed.
Q: Please find out why Lake Webb has been allowed to drop to less than 4 feet of water.
All of us who like to wakeboard are finding our boats bottoming out. Last week, we saw some young men put a $75,000 Malibu in the water with a three-bladed prop and pull the same boat out with a one blade prop. If officials are going to keep the lake level this low, they should at least post warning signs that the lake is not navigable. If we can't afford to operate a safe lake, keep the boats off before there is a serious incident.
-- Roger L. Miller
A: Bob Lerude, director of the Kern County Parks and Recreation Department, responded:
Yes, the water level has dropped. We (the county) are pumping (six pumps) basically 24 hours a day. Throughout the year, water comes in from various sources and is sent out of the lake for agricultural uses. During the summer, usually in August, the water level drops due to the water going out and the hot weather (evaporation losses) and we receive complaints as more water goes out than comes into the lake.
We expect to see the lake come back up as the weather cools from the extreme heat we have had in the last month. We have signage at the front gate that we put up each year as the water level drops indicating the low water level and to use caution.
Editor's note: A few weeks ago we answered a reader who asked why Hong Kong and China competed separately in the Olympics. The International Olympic Committee pointed us to news articles explaining a deal was made to keep them separate when China took over governance of Hong Kong from Great Britain.
At the same time we posed the question to the IOC, we posed it to Hong Kong's Olympics committee. We didn't expect the Chinese would get back to us but they recently did. We're sharing the response not because it's all that different from what we reported (it isn't), but because we found it interesting that one actually came (albeit a little late):
"You may wish to note that the Amateur Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, the National Olympic Committee of Hong Kong joined the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 1951. Hong Kong NOC would retain its separate entity when joining international competitions after its sovereignty return to China.
"Hong Kong should send delegations by using the name "Hong Kong, China" with the playing of the National Anthem of People's Republic of China, and the flying of the HKSAR Flag. An official agreement between the IOC and the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China (the Federation) was signed in 1997 to record this arrangement.
"Please see our website at www.hkolympic.org, which will give you a full perspective of our NOC.
"Thank you for your kind attention.
"Yours sincerely, Secretariat, Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China."