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Buzz Off Against GE

Clearly not all family farmers are "united against Measure M," as the ads proclaim. The Sonoma County Beekeepers Association has voted unanimously to endorse Measure M on the November ballot, which would enact a 10-year moratorium on growing genetically engineered crops in Sonoma County. "European studies have shown that up to two-thirds of a hive can die after being exposed to genetically engineered crops," said Spring Maxfield, president of the Beekeepers Association. "We don't want to see that happen to already fragile bee populations here." Maxfield said about 70 of the group's beekeepers are small family farmers who are also independently members of the Farm Bureau. Disputing the bureau's claim that its members are united against Measure M, Maxfield said the bureau has never polled its members. Founded more than half a century ago, the Sonoma County Beekeepers Association has almost 200 members.

Another Toll Hike

North Bay residents may soon have to fork over another dollar to cross the Richmond Bridge. The Bay Area Toll Authority took public comment this week on the proposal to raise the toll on many Bay Area bridges from $3 to $4. The increase, likely to take effect in January, would raise funds to complete the retrofitting of the Oakland Bay Bridge. Thus, even drivers who don't use the Bay Bridge will have to help foot its retrofit bill. Among the other bridges whose toll would increase to $4 are the Antioch, Carquinez, San Mateo and Dumbarton. The increase wouldn't affect the Golden Gate Bridge.

--Briefs by Michael Shapiro

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From the October 12-18, 2005 issue of the North Bay Bohemian.

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