PITTSBURG

College debate group takes third at Arizona competition

The Los Medanos College national debate team scored another honor this year when it placed third in the community college division of the National Parliamentary Debate Association Championship Tournament.

The competition took place March 20-24 at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Ariz.

Winning team members included Miguel Mauricio and Kevin Orozco of Pittsburg; Jose Alvarez, Brianna Klipp, Kathryn Lucido and Collin Brown of Antioch; Evan Mullicane of Oakley; and Dennis Tekell of San Ramon.

The team competed against several four-year universities which included University of the Pacific, University of Nevada-Reno, and San Diego State University, among others.

The team's third-place honors followed a regional competition held in February that saw Tekell and Dylan Melowitz win in the novice division after joining the team just three weeks earlier.

The debate team has had a stellar year, ranking 12th nationwide among community colleges and 52nd nationwide among community colleges and four-year colleges and universities.

-- Eve Mitchell, Staff

Antioch

City looks for volunteers to help police department

This city is looking for a few good men and women looking to assist the police department.

Applications are available for the Volunteers in Police Service, or VIPS, program until April 21.

The VIPS program started in 2001, with volunteers dedicating thousands of hours of service to the police department.

In 2013, the group worked 10,809.92 hours, a value of about $252,000 to the city.

VIPS duties include parking enforcement, illegal sign abatement, traffic control, vacation house checks and abatement of abandoned automobiles. Their work frees up officers and staff to handle higher priority duties, acting Lt. Don LaDue said in a news release.

They act as additional " eyes and ears" for the police department, LaDue said.

Applications are available on the city website, www.ci.antioch.ca.us.

-- Paul Burgarino, Staff

BRENTWOOD

New library foundation board looks for members

Book lovers are invited to apply for a seat on a foundation that's being formed to help finance the construction of Brentwood's new library.

Applications for a seat on the board are available at the library at 104 Oak St., as well as via a link to Friends of the Brentwood Library's website at http://ccclib.org/friends/bre.html.

The applications are due May 16.

Brentwood City Council in October agreed to demolish the existing library and build a new, significantly larger one on the same site.

Although the city's financing most of the project, a foundation is needed to apply for larger grants to supplement the cost, according to Diane Alexander, president of Friends of the Brentwood Library.

Applications will be reviewed May 21 and a decision made shortly after that.

For more information, email Diane Alexander at dapa@comcast.net.

-- Rowena Coetsee, Staff

PITTSBURG

Earth-friendly gardening talk is April 21

Those interested in learning how to garden in an earth-friendly way are invited to get the lowdown from a horticultural consultant.

Shawna Anderson will give a talk at 6 p.m. April 21 in the Family Life Center at Faith Worship Center Ministries, 2170 Harbor St., Pittsburg.

Cost is $10, which goes to the church's building fund.

Anderson will explain how people can grow their own vegetables organically, make compost, water efficiently, and use plants that attract beneficial insects.

In addition to light refreshments there will be a raffle for organic vegetable starts and tools.

To reserve a seat, call 925-457-5422 or email Shawnasgarden@aol.com.

-- Rowena Coetsee, Staff