Ezra Herzog, Affordable Care Act

Don Farquharson Editor:  Gary Buffon
Week of September 12, 2013

President Jim welcomed everyone to the friendly El Cerrito Rotary Club, the flag salute was led by Allen and the thought for the day was provided by Gary B.

Upcoming Club speakers and Board meetings schedule:

  • Rotary Club Board Meeting Sept 17 – please RSVP to President Jim regarding your attendance and agenda items
  • Sept 19 – Linda Yuan and Josh Ko EC Interact members will tell us about their Camp Royal experience
  • Sept 26 – Fellowship day
  •  Oct 3 – Gary Buffon – Growing Up in the High Desert

Special Presentation:  Don was asked to come forward and President Jim presented him with a special award recognizing him for providing excellent work as the club controller for the past six years.  Don was given a standing ovation by his fellow Rotarians.


  • Karen gave us a status update on the posters MDA provided for our PR efforts for the wine tasting.  She held one of the great posters provided for us to see. The last day to sign up as an event sponsor is Sept. 19th, next week.
  • Gary B announced that Interact club will be hosting the Interact District Conference in Nov either the 9th or 10th or 17th at El Cerrito High School.  More info in a week or so
  • Nancy announced the Mechanics Bank in El Cerrito will be holding a mixer on Oct 24th

Happy Dollars:

Karen NierlichLee is happy for the America’s Cup races being shown on a theater screen in Alameda and entry is free.  Sal is happy about the Solano Stroll and thanked Allen for the great venue.  Sal gave us a brief review of what the Rotary booths were doing.  Marty is happy that his shop was painted by Gateview Painting.  Nobuko is happy that Lee responded to her phone call for help by making a house call when her cat got ill.

Jack is happy that when he visited all of the BARSHEEP club that everyone had praise for the ECHS Interact Club we sponsor.  John is happy he was taken to Cal Bears football game by his kids and had a good time.  Michael is happy his house remodel is underway and it is being done by Collins Construction which is owned by Larry Sanchez. Tracy is happy about the praise that Mark and Cindi Scott receive from the RotoCare folks for the great dinner they were provided.

Sgt at Arms Steve:

Being short of time today Steve simply brought two SF Chronicle articles that had Rotarian’s names in them.  We knew who the Rotarians were – Allen Cain and Jon Vicars but we did not know how many times their names were mentioned in the article so that cost us all $5.

Today’s Program:

President Jim introduced Ezra Herzog to speak to us about the Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare.  Ezra provided us a summary of the impact that the new law will have on both individual health coverage as well as business coverage. Some of the major changes are that the actuarial table will nolonger be used  and people who are uninsurable now will be able to buy coverage. Another difference is that all are required to buy coverage, so after the enrollment period, those without coverage will face penalties. However there are new subsidies and support for those with lower incomes to either cover them or pay part of their coverage. As today, those in companies with 50 or more employees are covered by their employers. He gave us info on the California Exchange, called Covered California and how it may work. Thanks Ezra for speaking to us today.

Today’s Lottery Winners:

Don had his ticket drawn and won the bottle of wine.  Jack had his ticket pulled for the marble drawing and selected the golden marble willing the $75 pot.  Next week the pot will be $50.

Thought for the Week:

The penalty of success is to be bored by the attentions of people who formerly snubbed you.
-M. W. Little

Charles Burress, Editor – Albany/Berkeley Patch & David Mills, Editor – El Cerrito Patch

Editor:  Gary Buffon
Week of August 22, 2013

President Jim welcomed everyone to the friendly El Cerrito Rotary Club, the flag salute was led by Lee and the thought for the day was provided by John.

Secretary John – Introduction of Visiting Rotarians and Guests:  John introduced Dick Morrish and then had Allen introduce his wife Isma Kahn and a friend Wendy Cohen who is a sponsor of the Solano Stroll.


  • Pres Jim discussed with Joe, Larry and Mark Figone the idea of a remembrance for Marvin Collins and the choice is to make a memorial scholarship as everyone felt Marv would like that a great deal.
  • Pres Jim announced the Rotary Christmas Party will be Dec 21st at Trader Vics in Emeryville
  • Jane gave us updates on the wine tasting fund raiser.  Raffle prizes are being solicited and the tickets for Rotarians to sell were passed out to those who did not get them last Thursday.
  • Tracy reported that Rotarian Pat Toddhunter is almost totally rehabbed and is planning on attending Rotary next week.  Tracy had a card for everyone to sign to give her.
  • John announced that we are partnering with Lamorinda Rotary on a fund raiser where we will sell tickets at the Solano Stroll.  Next week we will have Ron Brown from the Lamorinda club will give us the details.
  • Lee is going to be the “Fun Guy” this year so we can all look forward to the fellowship activities.  Lee ask for suggestions and then said to email him with those ideas that were presented.

Happy Dollars: 

Kathleen is happy that Lee has been keeping her cat as healthy as possible.  Also Kathleen’s son is now attending USF and all is well.  Allen had $20 in honor of his wife being at Rotary and also that Wendy was able to come today.  Alan L. was happy that the referral Tracy made of a person for a dental intervention has now become a patient.  Past Pres Frank is happy his daughter’s health is improving.  Jim Shepherd is happy he was able to spend a couple of days with his Mother to help her get settled in an apartment.

Sgt at Arms Steve: 

Today all of use were asked to determine who had not worn their Rotary pin.  Those who did not were recognized for $5.

Today’s Program:

Karen introduced our guest speakers:  Charles Burress who is Editor of Albany/Berkeley Patch and David Mills who has taken over El Cerrito Patch to tell us about the state of local media and some of the key things that they are doing in their role in their media niche.   Charles began by providing a historical perspective of what is happening to Journalism nationally and locally.  The statistics of the print media are pretty grim.  From 2007 to 2012 some 42000 positions has vanished.  Newspapers have had to respond to technology in order to survive.  Most advertising has moved to the internet which has essentially starved the print industry.  For example in 2005 newspapers had $50 billion in ad revenue and 2012 the number was $22.3 billion.   This is one reason that a lot internet news sources are what is driving the industry.  Charles pointed out how important it is to have local news because what is important to the people is having info on what is going on in your own area.

Charles then turned the microphone over to David to give us his perspective.  David worked in newspaper and TV News for many years.  He reinforced what Charles told us and added his perspective from his experience at the SF Chronicle and Channel Five news.   David gave us suggestions on how we can use Patch as a way to distribute new regarding Rotary and some ways to publicize what we are doing.  There was an excellent Q & A session after David spoke.  This was an excellent presentation.  Thanks Karen for having Charles and David speak to us.



Today’s Lottery Winners:    Marty had his ticket drawn and won the bottle of wine.  Rod had his ticket pulled for the marble drawing and selected a catseye.  Next week the pot will be $65.


Thought for the Week: 

Failures to heroic minds are the stepping stones to success.
Thomas Chandler Haliburton