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Pastor Roger Leach of Valley West Christian Center would like to see “In God We Trust” displayed at City Hall as the city’s motto.

“We are at a time in our country when we need a little extra help,” said Leach, who will be honored Aug. 18 by the Madera Chamber of Commerce as one of five of the city’s Lifetime Achievement Award winners.

“The motto appears on our money,” he said at Wednesday night’s City Council meeting.

Leach also said July 30 would be the 60th anniversary of the law making “In God We Trust” the nation’s motto. That law, he said, passed the House of Representatives on a vote of 396 to 9. When I got home from the meeting that night, I borrowed a dollar from the cat, looked at it, and sure enough, there was the motto, right over the word “One” and between the two halves of the Great Seal.

Taxpayer money would not be sought to create the plaque bearing the motto, Leach said. Rather, public subscriptions would be sought.

The council members took no vote on this matter, but did indicate by nods of their heads that they would like to see it go forward.

Madera would be among more than 125 counties and cities in California that have adopted the motto.


You have probably noticed that the city is being taken over by new and improved bus shelters. Forty were installed in 2013, and another 21 will be installed in 2017.

The new bus shelters are sturdier than the old ones, and cuter, too. They have little tiled roofs that provide a modicum of shelter from sun and rain.

An improved route service will be started Aug. 22, according to Jose Avila of the city’s transit department.

I was talking to someone not long ago who quipped that it might be good if the bus fleet went to work for Uber, the cellphone-powered ride-sharing service.

“The city might be able to pick up some extra money by doing that,” said my source, who said he often is irked when he sees empty buses driving up to bus stops where nobody is waiting.

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