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Nearly 100 Confederate statues were removed in 2020, but hundreds remain, new SPLC data shows Five board members of Texas grid operator ERCOT resign

(Bloomberg) -- GameStop Corp., the beleaguered video-game retailer whose shares soared and then collapsed in a trading frenzy this year, said Chief Financial Officer Jim Bell is resigning, effective next month.

© Bloomberg A pedestrian wearing a protective mask walks past a a GameStop Corp. store in the Herald Square area of New York, U.S., on Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. With sparse crowds and none of the stampedes of holidays past, some retail watchers started to refer to Black Friday as Blase Friday instead -- and that was even before the virus hit.

The board and management pushed Bell out to make way for a new finance chief who shares their vision of transforming GameStop from a brick-and-mortar retailer into an e-commerce company, according to a person with knowledge of the situation who asked not to be identified. Bell didn’t respond to a request for comment.

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An executive search firm has been engaged to find a finance chief with “the capabilities and qualifications to help accelerate GameStop’s transformation,” the company said Tuesday.

The Grapevine, Texas-based retailer is undertaking a strategic review, largely the result of pressure from board member Ryan Cohen, who bought about 13% of the shares and became the company’s largest individual investor. The former head of pet-supply provider Chewy has pushed GameStop to become a more direct competitor to Amazon.com Inc. He won three seats on the company’s board earlier this year.

Diana Jajeh, GameStop’s chief accounting officer, will step in if the CFO post isn’t filled by Bell’s March 26 exit, the retailer said. Bell held the position since June 2019.

“Mr. Bell’s resignation was not because of any disagreement with the company on any matter relating to the company’s operations, policies or practices, including accounting principles and practices,” the company said in a filing. The company declined to comment.

Read more: Robinhood, Citadel CEOs at GameStop hearing

Shares of GameStop tumbled as much as 4.8% to $42.80 in extended trading following the announcement. Shares of the company soared as high as $483 in January during a so-called short squeeze.

GameStop wasn’t able to capitalize on the run-up, though the company said in December that it might try to raise as much as $100 million through a stock sale.

The frenzied stock action was driven by traders on the social network Reddit. Congress is currently holding a series of hearings to determine if the surge and subsequent collapse in GameStop shares exposed any holes in the financial system.

(Updates reason for resignation in second paragraph.)

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Letters: No rate hikes | Premature outrage | HSR crucial | Continued caution | Voting rules | Letting Biden off

Submit your letter to the editor via this form. Read more Letters to the Editor.

More conservation
shouldn’t raise rates

Re. “Snow levels indicate Californians should conserve water now,” Page A6, March 4 :

During the last drought, from 2012-16, I converted my front lawn to drought-resistant and even received a rebate for over $700 from the water district. After the drought ended, I didn’t start taking long showers or watering my driveway cement. Many of us are still in water conservation mode.

Cut back more? Yes, I can, and will, do that. But the water districts should not be allowed to raise the rates like they did last time. And I’m not talking about penalties either. Their excuse was that since people weren’t using as much, they weren’t getting as much money — punishing us for doing the right thing. It’s bad enough PG&E is allowed to charge us more for their screw-ups.

Jennifer Cardenas
Livermore

Too soon for editorial’s
outrage about drought

There we go. I was waiting for your newspaper to cry wolf again (“Snow levels indicate Californians should conserve water now,” Page A6, March 4).

If it rains in the plains you say there wasn’t enough snow in the hills. If it snows in the hills you say there was not enough rain in the plains.

If you did your research you would have found out that more than 80% of the water in the state is used for farming. Asking urban dwellers to cut their water use and beating them if they don’t only riles people like me into writing to the paper.

The water authorities themselves haven’t declared a drought yet. This editorial should be published in a farmers gazette instead. Please save us this outrage.

Madras Venkatesh
Danville

High-speed rail
crucial to clean air

Re. “Californians shrug off their high-speed rail boondoggle,” Page A7, March 3:

I think article author Charles Reed from San Diego has a lot of gall and doesn’t care about clean air.

San Diego is, perhaps, the major urban area in California that would benefit least from high-speed rail. San Diego has long supported rail projects benefiting their area: frequent state-sponsored Amtrak service and their expanding light-rail system. San Diego apparently supports rail projects which benefit them directly.

High-speed rail helps to clean our air by diverting long-distance motorists and intra-state air travelers to a viable, efficient alternative.

For a cleaner, healthier California environment, supporting high-speed rail is a major contributor toward that goal.

Douglas P. Sibley
Martinez

Keep up COVID guard
despite improvements

It appears Contra Costa is moving closer to the red tier. A third vaccine is now approved for emergency use. So, what changes after you have had your two doses? Not much.

Here is why this is so important: A year into this and we have all had it with restrictions. Enough already. But it is imperative that we don’t make the same mistake every time we seem to get some control of the pandemic. For the sake of our families, friends and the businesses that have struggled since they were first shut down, continue to wear your mask and don’t attend mass gatherings. It is unknown whether vaccinated people can still carry and transmit the virus to others.

We all want our “normal” back. Understand that even with vaccines and a path to “herd immunity,” we have a lot more work to do. Let’s do it together.

Jay Lifson

Lafayette

Voting rules are states’
purview, not Congress’

One can but wonder whether the 220 of 221 Democrat Representatives who voted for HR1, including Speaker Pelosi, have read, or understood, the U.S. Constitution. HR1 offers a “counterweight to the voting rights restrictions in (states) across the country.”

These representatives fail to understand that when the fiercely-independent 13 colonies agreed to confederation as a “United States,” it was only if they could maintain their individual state’s rights, while also limiting the national (federal) government power. Thus, Article 2 of the U.S. Constitution states that only the legislatures — but not the supreme courts or governors — of each state are empowered to define the specifics of how election ballots are cast and counted.

Changes to the U.S. Constitution can only be made by constitutional amendments, approved by three-fourths of the states. Congressional legislation — such as HR1 — has no legal standing to change any component of the Constitution.

Fred Korr
Oakland

Letter writers let
Biden off hook

As a long-term subscriber, it is fascinating to still see the large number of anti-Trump letters to the editor. It’s almost as if they haven’t acknowledged that Joe Biden is the new president.

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Yet, at the same time, the published letters seem to ignore the plethora of executive orders that have not been well thought through (situation at the borders), absence of an actual press conference where the questions have not been pre-screened, the continued overwhelming presence of the National Guard at the barbed wire, restricted access to the Capitol, and the most unusual lack of a State of the Union speech to the people and members of Congress, where the president has traditionally outlined the status of the country and his plans for the future.

Seemingly, it’s unlikely that I’m the only one who has noticed this absence from the new commander in chief.

Chris Kniel
Orinda

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