Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger

Source: Willie Henderson, Carmichael post office food drive coordinator, Nalc branch 4494  |  2016-05-02
  |

Participating in this year’s Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is simple: just leave a non-perishable food donation in a bag by your mail box on Saturday, May 14th and your Letter Carrier will do the rest. Photo courtesy United States Postal Service

Saturday, May 14th marks the 24th anniversary of one of America’s great days of giving: the National Association of Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive.

Letter carriers walk through the community every day, often coming face to face with a sad reality for too many, hunger. So each year on the second Saturday in May, Letter Carriers across the country collect non-perishable food donations from our customers. These donations go directly to local food pantries to provide food to people in Sacramento who need their help.

Last year they collected over 71 million pounds of food nationally, feeding an estimated 30 million people. Over the course of its 23-year history, the drive has collected well over one billion pounds of food, thanks to a postal service universal delivery network that spans the entire nation, including Puerto Rico, Guam and U.S. Virgin Islands.

The need for food donations is great; currently 49 million Americans (one in six) are unsure where their next meal is coming from. Sixteen million are children who feel hunger's impact on their overall health and ability to perform in school. And over 5 million seniors over age 60 are food insecure, with many who live on fixed incomes are often too embarrassed to ask for help.

This food drive’s timing is crucial. Food banks and pantries often receive the majority of their donations during the Thanksgiving and winter holiday seasons. By springtime, many pantries are depleted, entering the summer low on supplies at a time when many school breakfast and lunch programs are not available to children in need.

Participating in this year’s Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is simple. Just leave a non-perishable food donation in a bag by your mail box on Saturday, May 14th and your Letter Carrier will do the rest. You are invited to join in America’s great day of giving and help fight to end hunger.

Sac Choral Society

Community Update

By County Supervisor Susan Peters  |  2016-05-03

Through the generosity of The American River Messenger this column serves to provide an update about matters affecting the unincorporated community of Fair Oaks.

Emergency Services Chief to Speak

At my next Community Coffee Meeting on Wednesday morning, May 18th, Sacramento County Emergency Services Director Steve Cantelme will be the guest speaker. He will present an overview of the County’s Office of Emergency Services which serves to coordinate the overall Sacramento Countywide response to large scale incidents and disasters. I hope you can join me for what should be a most informative session.

These informal morning gatherings are held four times throughout the year and include guest speakers on topical issues.  The May meeting will begin at 7:30 am in the Fair Oaks Water District’s conference room, 10326 Fair Oaks Blvd. near Winding Way. Coffee, of course, will be provided.

For a list of dates for the remaining Community Coffee Meetings for 2016, please list my webpage at bos.saccounty.net.

California’s Presidential Primary Next Month

California’s June Presidential Primary Election will be next month with Election Day on Tuesday, June 7th. The polls will be open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Contests include balloting to nominate candidates for President, U.S. House of Representatives, Assembly, and Board of Supervisors. Voters in the City of Sacramento will be choosing a new mayor.

All area voters can go online to confirm that they are registered by visiting the Sacramento County Elections Office’s web site at elections.saccounty.net.  The web site also allows you to find your polling place.  In addition you can call 875-6451 for more information.

Registered voters also may apply for a vote-by-mail ballot for the upcoming election to avoid having to physically travel to your polling place. 

Family Fun at the County Fair

The 2016 Sacramento County Fair will be held May 26th to 30th at Cal Expo. Activities include a carnival, food, barn animals, music, and shopping.

General Admission is only $5. Children age 12 and under are admitted free.

Separate special entertainment includes a Monster Truck Tour on Thursday and Friday nights, May 26th and 27) plus the Stars and Stripes Invitational Bull Riding Event on Saturday night, May 28th.

For more information about hours, general admission entertainment schedules, tickets to the demolition derby and bull riding competition, etc., please visit sacfair.com.

Honoring Those Who Served

Memorial Day is a special occasion we as a nation remember those who served in the Armed Forces and made the ultimate sacrifice for our country – and the Fair Oaks Cemetery District will be holding its annual Memorial Day and Avenue of Flags Ceremony at the cemetery on Saturday, May 28th.

Located at 7780 Olive Street in Fair Oaks, the cemetery will be decorated with hundreds of flags lining its roadways and the program will include military honors as well as the laying of the wreath at the memorial in honor of the more than 1,700 veterans at the cemetery.

The formal ceremony starts at 10 am. For more information, please visit fairoakscemetery.com

Susan Peters represents the Third District on the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors. She can be reached at susanpeters@saccounty.net.


...Read More!  
  |  

Public Library to Shake Taboo on Death

Source: Sacramento Public Library  |  2016-04-29

In her memoir, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes, Doughty helps to demystify death by sharing her experience working in a Bay Area crematorium. Photo courtesy The Order of the Good Death

Sacramento Public Library will shake the taboo off of death during the second session of its new community discussion series called “Let’s Talk About.”

The discussion will focus on why our society doesn’t openly talk about death. Facilitating the discussion will be author Caitlin Doughty and local law enforcement Chaplain Jenny Ebinger.

In her memoir, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes, Doughty helps to demystify death by sharing her experience working in a Bay Area crematorium. Today, as a modern mortician, she has founded the death acceptance collective, The Order of the Good Death, and reaches nearly 75,000 people with her “Ask a Mortician” YouTube series.

Chaplain Jenny Ebinger helps local families to acknowledge and cope with death. As an active law enforcement chaplain volunteer, she supports local officials, families and victims as they deal with death.

The discussion takes place on Sunday, May 15th from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at the Tsakopoulos Library Galleria located at 828 I Street in Sacramento. Seating is limited. Register for the event at www.letstalksacramento.org.

Sacramento Public Library’s new discussion series called, “Let’s Talk About” is designed to engage the local community in the lost art of conversation. It’s a meetup for your mind.

The series addresses topics society doesn’t often discuss and provides resources for people to educate themselves on those topics.

Sacramento Public Library will provide a respectful environment for the discussions to take place. The community is invited to join the discussion as an observer or a thoughtful contributor.

For more information, visit www.letstalksacramento.org.


...Read More!  
  |  

Superheroes Walk for Life

Source: Sacramento Life Center  |  2016-04-29

Local residents are invited to dress up as their favorite superheroes and join Sacramento Life Center’s Heroes Walk for Life on May 14th at Maidu Park in Roseville from 8:30 to 12:30 p.m. The 2K and 5K walk and fun run will raise funds for free pregnancy services at the Sacramento Life Center, benefiting low-income pregnant women and teens. The family-friendly event will include a rally, toddler dash, costume contest, bounce houses, a carnival and more. Registration is $25, but free for kids ages 12 and under. For more information, to sign up or to make a donation, visit www.saclife.org or www.walkingheroes.org.

“This is a great opportunity for families, individuals and teams to be heroes for mothers and babies in need of care," said Marie Leatherby, executive director, Sacramento Life Center. “This will be a fun day celebrating the amazing work being done in our community to ensure low-income pregnant women and teens are well cared for.”

The Sacramento Life Center’s mission is to offer compassion, support, resources and free medical care to women and couples facing an unplanned or unsupported pregnancy. The Sacramento Life Center’s licensed Sac Valley Pregnancy Clinic includes a primary clinic and two Mobile Medical Clinics that provide all services for free, including pregnancy testing, STI testing, ultrasounds, advocacy for men and women, education and resource referrals. The nonprofit also offers a school-based teen education program, a 24-hour hotline and a program for women seeking support after having an abortion. For more information about the Sacramento Life Center’s Sac Valley Pregnancy Clinic, visit www.svpclinic.com. For more information about the Sacramento Life Center or to make a donation, visit www.saclife.org.


...Read More!  
  |  

Boating Scheduled to Resume at Pyramid Lake on May 2

Source: DWR Public Affairs Office  |  2016-04-28

Water Level Was Lowered to Allow Maintenance at Nearby Castaic Powerplant

Pyramid Lake’s water level will have risen enough following a planned drawdown over the past week that boating on the lake will resume on May 2, the Department of Water Resources announced today.

Boating was suspended on Friday April 22 as the water level was lowered to facilitate maintenance work at the nearby Castaic Powerplant. The drawdown lowered Pyramid Lake’s level from 2,571 feet to 2,563 feet and made the boat ramp unusable.

Boating was suspended to ensure boaters would not be left without an ability to remove their boats from the lake once the boat ramp became inoperable. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department cleared the lake of boats on April 22, and the ramp was barricaded and the boating concession closed.

Inflows from the State Water Project to Pyramid Lake have slowly increased the lake’s storage in the past week, and the boat ramp will be available for use once again on Monday morning.

Scheduled water deliveries to Southern California customers continued without interruption during the Castaic Powerplant work.


California has been dealing with the effects of drought for five years. To learn about all the actions the state has taken to manage our water system and cope with the impacts of the drought, visit Drought.CA.Gov. Every Californian should take steps to conserve water. Find out how at SaveOurWater.com.


...Read More!  
  |  

Each year, the IRS mails millions of notices and letters to taxpayers for a variety of reasons. If you receive correspondence from them:

Don’t panic. You can usually deal with a notice simply by responding to it.

Most IRS notices are about federal tax returns or tax accounts. Each notice has specific instructions, so read your notice carefully because it will tell you what you need to do.

Your notice will likely be about changes to your account, taxes you owe or a payment request. However, your notice may ask you for more information about a specific issue.

If your notice says that the IRS changed or corrected your tax return, review the information and compare it with your original return.

If you agree with the notice, you usually don’t need to reply unless it gives you other instructions or you need to make a payment.

If you don’t agree with the notice, you need to respond. Write a letter that explains why you disagree, and include information and documents you want the IRS to consider. Mail your response with the contact stub at the bottom of the notice to the address on the contact stub. Allow at least 30 days for a response.

For most notices, you won’t need to call or visit a walk-in center. If you have questions, call the phone number in the upper right-hand corner of the notice. Be sure to have a copy of your tax return and the notice with you when you call.

Always keep copies of any notices you receive with your tax records.

Be alert for tax scams. The IRS sends letters and notices by mail. They don’t contact people by email or social media to ask for personal or financial information. If you owe tax, you have several payment options. The IRS won’t demand that you pay a certain way, such as prepaid debit or credit card.

For more on this topic, visit www.IRS.gov. Click on the link ‘Responding to a Notice’ at the bottom center of the home page. Also, see Publication 594, The IRS Collection Process. You can get it on www.IRS.gov/forms at any time.

If you need to make a payment visit www.IRS.gov/payments or use the IRS2Go app to make payment with Direct Pay for free, or by debit or credit card through an approved payment processor for a fee.

Each and every taxpayer has a set of fundamental rights they should be aware of when dealing with the IRS. These are your Taxpayer Bill of Rights. Explore your rights and our obligations to protect them on www.IRS.gov.


...Read More!  
  |  

The American Lung Association State of the Air 2016 released recently found that the Sacramento region continues to make significant gains in reducing pollution, reporting fewer particle pollution days and the lowest ever unhealthy ozone days.

“The State of the Air 2016 report shows us that our clean air laws are working but we must increase our efforts to cut pollution that puts lives in our community at risk,” said Olivia J. (Gertz) Diaz-Lapham, President and CEO of the American Lung Association in California. “Pollution from petroleum fuels and other sources is harming our residents, contributing to the incidence of asthma and other chronic lung conditions. Air pollution costs our communities in health care spending, lost productivity, reduced quality and length of life.”

Covering air pollution data collected in 2012 to 2014, the report measures the two most widespread pollutants, ozone and particle pollution, which are dangerous to public health and can be deadly. Unhealthy ozone days have fallen by 53 percent, and unhealthy spikes in particle pollution have fallen by 76 percent over the course of the State of the Air.

Moreover, annual particle pollution levels have dropped by 23 percent. These improvements were driven by passenger vehicle and diesel emission controls, along with strong local wood burning restrictions. The Sacramento metropolitan region includes El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba counties.

Despite these improvements, more still needs to be done as all counties in the region except Yolo County received a failing grade for ozone pollution, and both Placer and Sacramento failed for daily particle pollution. Drought weather conditions, combined with ongoing traffic, diesel and wood smoke pollution contribute to high levels of pollution in the region.

Climate change is a growing threat to air quality in California. Drought weather conditions and wildfires related to climate change are contributing to elevated levels of particle pollution in the San Joaquin Valley and other areas of the state. Key sources of soot include wood burning devices, transportation sources such as diesel engines in trucks, buses and freight, and smoke from wildfires. These soot particles are so small that they can lodge deep in the lungs and trigger asthma attacks, heart attacks and strokes, and can even be lethal. In the Sacramento region, more than 200,000 residents have asthma, including 52,000 children.

“Sacramento continues to have air quality challenges but we are making progress in cleaning up the air. We know that climate change factors are contributing to increased levels of ozone and particle pollution, and will make it harder to meet federal health-based standards,” said David Tom Cooke, MD, Head of the UC Davis Section of General Thoracic Surgery and member of the Lung Association’s volunteer governing board. “Our most vulnerable loved ones, including children and seniors and those battling lung diseases such as lung cancer, asthma, chronic bronchitis, or emphysema, suffer the greatest. We must redouble our efforts to transition off of fossil fuels for transportation and energy generation by investing in zero emissions solutions.”

To address the challenge of air pollution and climate change, the American Lung Association in California and major health and medical organizations urge the public and policy leaders to strongly support the federal Clean Air Act and the federal Clean Power Plan as well as California’s strong clean energy and clean air policies.  This year the lung association is also calling for support of Senate Bill 1383 (Lara) to set clear targets for reducing “super pollutants” like black carbon from diesel exhaust and wood burning that threaten public health locally and are accelerating climate change. 

For more information on the State of the Air 2016 report, the public should visit: www.stateoftheair.org/california2016.

Now in its second century, the American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease. With your generous support, the American Lung Association is “Fighting For Air” through research, education, and advocacy. For more information about the American Lung Association or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872) or visit www.lung.org/california.


...Read More!  
  |  

SCSO Caps 20th Season with European Masterworks and New CD Release

Source: SCSO  |  2016-04-21

The Sacramento Community Center Theater will cap their 20th season with a performance featuring three contrasting choral orchestral works by Haydn, Vaughan Williams, and Dvoràk. Photo courtesy SCSO

Conductor Donald Kendrick and the SCSO plan to cap their landmark 20th season on May 14th at 8 p.m. at the Sacramento Community Center Theater with a performance featuring three contrasting choral orchestral works by Haydn, Vaughan Williams, and Dvoràk. But the celebration doesn’t end there! The evening will also serve as a huge CD release party as the SCSO plans to unveil its 9th professionally mastered CD — Carmina Burana II — at this year-end performance.

Haydn’s Harmonimesse will serve as the evening’s main musical fare, complemented by Vaughan Williams’ An Oxford Elegy, and Dvoràk’s Psalm 149 on the first half of the concert.

“The Harmoniemesse will bring back so many warm memories as this was the amazing work that we featured during our first self-funded European tour to Munich, Prague, Vienna, and Budapest in 2004,” said Conductor Donald Kendrick. Four outstanding soloists and narrator Phillip Rider will join the SCSO Team on stage for this performance.

“A post concert reception, projected supertitle translations, and Don Kendrick’s electric and educational pre-concert talk at 7 p.m. will enhance the evening’s enjoyment for our concert attendees,” added SCSO Board Member Charlene Black.

According to SCSO President James McCormick, “Our new CD is a live recording of our very well-received Carmina Burana performance on March 5th, 2016 at the Community Center Theater. We’re thrilled that the CD will also showcase the American première of English composer Jonathan Dove’s Psalms for Leo. The amazing 12-page color CD insert promises to add great value to the CD itself.”

SCSO European Masterworks tickets are $30 to $45 with a 50 percent discount for students. For tickets, call the Sacramento Community Center Box Office at (916) 808-5181 or visit sacramentochoral.com for both tickets and information.

For more information about this press release, please contact Jeannie Brown, Director of Marketing at (916) 496-0175 or President, James McCormick at (916) 536-9065.


...Read More!  
  |  

Senator Gaines’ Classic Car Collector Bill Passes

Source: Office of Senator Gaines  |  2016-04-20

Senator Ted Gaines (R-El Dorado) recently announced that his Senate Bill 1239, which would exempt collector vehicles manufactured prior to the 1981 model year from biennial smog-check inspections, passed out of the Senate Committee on Transportation and Housing with bipartisan support and is now on its way to the Senate Committee on Appropriations.

“Collector cars and trucks are a unique and important part of California history and need to be preserved,” said Senator Gaines. “Extending the exemption to 1981 is a common-sense way to encourage that these vehicles remain on display for all to see, drive and enjoy.”

Current law allows smog-check exemptions for classic or collector cars for vehicles model year 1975 or older. However, there are many vehicles that were built after 1975 that are currently owned and operated as collector cars, such as late seventies and early eighties Corvettes, Mustangs and Mopars. Many of these vehicles are featured in classic car shows and community parades and events throughout California that help support the economy.

In order to qualify for the exemption, owners of classic and collector vehicles must insure their cars with collector car insurance. Collector car insurance places specific mileage restrictions on the vehicles, as dictated by the insurance company. Vehicles are often limited to a usage cap of around 5,000 miles in a year. This ensures the integrity of the vehicle stays intact, as well as minimizes the environmental impact that the smog check regulates.

According to the Association of California Car Clubs, there are approximately 162,000 vehicles with model years covered by this bill. Compared to the approximately 27 million motor vehicles in California, this bill will provide an exemption to just over one half of one percent of vehicles on the road today.

Senator Ted Gaines represents the 1st Senate District, which includes all or parts of Alpine, El Dorado, Lassen, Modoc, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, Shasta, Sierra and Siskiyou counties.


...Read More!  
  |  

Sacramento Life Center Receives $12.5k From American River Bank to Care for Low-Income Pregnant Women

Source: Kristin Thébaud Communications  |  2016-04-20

Marie Leatherby of Sacramento Life Center accepts a check from American River Bank to help low-income pregnant women. Photo courtesy Kristin Thébaud Communications

American River Bank has awarded a $12,500 grant to Sacramento Life Center for the nonprofit’s Mobile Medical Clinics that provide free medical services to low-income pregnant women, including pregnancy tests, STD tests, ultrasounds, peer counseling, education and resource referrals.

“This grant from American River Bank will almost fully cover the costs of having one of our Mobile Medical Clinics on the road one day a week for a year,” said Marie Leatherby, executive director, Sacramento Life Center. “We are grateful to American River Bank for supporting low-income pregnant women in our community and understanding the importance of women receiving care in their own neighborhood so transportation isn’t a barrier.”

For a schedule for the Mobile Medical Clinics, visit www.svpclinic.com.

“The Sacramento Life Center does amazing work coming alongside and supporting young women in need,” said David Taber, president and CEO, American River Bank. “This organization is truly a lifesaver.”

The Sacramento Life Center's mission is to offer compassion, support, resources and free medical care to women and couples facing an unplanned or unsupported pregnancy. The Sacramento Life Center’s licensed Sac Valley Pregnancy Clinic includes a primary clinic and two Mobile Medical Clinics that provide all services for free, including pregnancy tests, STD tests, ultrasounds, peer counseling for men and women, education and resource referrals. The nonprofit also offers a school-based teen education program, a 24-hour hotline and a program for women seeking support after having an abortion. For more information about the Sacramento Life Center’s Sac Valley Pregnancy Clinic, visit www.svpclinic.com. For more information about the Sacramento Life Center or to make a donation, visit www.saclife.org.


...Read More!  
  |