Now that the dust has begun to settle in the wake of Peter Burke's departure from the Press-Banner, I felt that it was time to properly introduce myself to you, our readership.

“Hi! This is Joe Shreve calling from the Press-Banner newspaper...”

In the four years I've been writing about Scotts Valley and the San Lorenzo Valley, I have said that phrase countless times, to countless numbers of you — and I could not be more excited to continue doing so as this publication's Interim Editor.

Since so many of you already know who I am, I will try and keep my biography as short, and as ramble-free as possible.

I have spent most of my 30 years as a part of this community: I grew up in Felton, where my family still lives today; I attended preschool in Mount Hermon; My first job was in Brookdale; I graduated from San Lorenzo Valley High School; and I spent nearly a decade of summers teaching swim lessons in Scotts Valley.

When I was first hired as a part-time reporter at the Press-Banner in 2010, I was fairly certain — in equal parts naivete and arrogance — that I had very little left to learn about this region I call home.

As I'm sure you can guess, I was freed of that foolish notion in short order.

Every single week, I learn something new about these communities, some new way that every person and every place fits together in the overall picture.

That is what I love about what I do, and that is what I will strive to bring to the Press-Banner's readers every week.

Let's learn something new together.

Now, down to business here.

The Press-Banner is officially endorsing two local measures up for a vote at the upcoming Tuesday, June 3 election — Measure A in Scotts Valley, and the countywide Measure F.

Measure A: The Scotts Valley Middle School campus is crumbling, and it will have to be replaced sooner or later.

Yes, a $35 million bond measure is a large price tag, but the longer this issue is not resolved, the more expensive the project will become. Why wait for the situation to become an emergency?

We believe that Measure A represents a strong investment by the Scotts Valley community in its future by providing its children with safe, modern middle school campus that reflects the quality of the programs and people within.

We applaud the Scotts Valley Unified School District's efforts to include the community into the decision-making during the formation of this bond measure.

Measure F: This ballot measure calls for replacing a $6.58 annual charge to county homeowners with an annual charge of $8.50 — an increase of $1.92 per improved structure. All in the name of improving and maintaining the Santa Cruz County Parks.

We believe that these parks — and the programs and facilities within them — are used by so many of Santa Cruz County's residents, that an extra $1.92 seems a very reasonable price to ask for in the name of keeping them open, clean, active, and safe.

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