SPCA Comes to the Rescue

By Sarah Varanini, SPCA  |  2018-10-31

The shelter transport arrived back at the Sacramento SPCA Friday evening. Photo courtesy SPCA

Welcomes displaced dogs affected by Hurricane Michael


SACRAMENTO Region, CA (MPG) – Hurricane Michael recently displaced more than just families. It also displaced many pets in need of immediate care. On Friday, October 19, the Sacramento SPCA received fifteen dogs transferred from shelters in Florida impacted by Hurricane Michael.

Employees from the Sacramento SPCA drove their new animal transfer vehicle, which was purchased through a grant from PetSmart Charities, to Kettleman City on Friday morning to meet staff from San Diego Humane Society.  In collaboration with the Humane Society of the United States, the San Diego Humane Society arranged for a transfer of 93 dogs from three shelters located in Florida to create space for animals displaced by Hurricane Michael.

The shelter transport arrived back at the Sacramento SPCA Friday evening.  “After the dog’s arrival, our priority was getting them comfortable and settled into their new housing,” said Sacramento SPCA Animal Services Practice Manager, Karalyn Aronow.  “Medical assessments and close observation of the animals will continue over the next week to determine when they will be available for adoption”.

The dogs are medium to large-sized mixed breeds, primarily consisting of lab, pit bull, and hound mixes under five years of age.  Ten of the fifteen dogs are Heartworm positive and will undergo Heartworm treatment.

The incoming pets are not direct victims of Hurricane Michael. They are adoptable dogs who have been in animal shelters in the Florida Panhandle area. They were transported out of the area to create room for pets who have been lost, strayed or abandoned due to the hurricane.

“The category 4 storm that recently devastated the Florida Panhandle and the record-setting wildfire season in California are harsh reminders of how important disaster preparedness is for us and our pets,” said Sacramento SPCA CEO, Kenn Altine.  “I witnessed, first-hand, the devastation and displacement of families and pets impacted by natural disasters while helping with Hurricane Katrina relief efforts in 2005, and even closer to home this August, while assisting Haven Humane Society with relief efforts during the Carr Fire”

These reminders come just as the California Department of Water Resources encourages communities to participate in Flood Preparedness Week.  Local preparedness events and exercises are being held throughout the state to educate communities on what to do during extreme weather events.

A Flood Preparedness Funfair will be held in Sacramento at the Miller Regional Park on Saturday, October 27 from 10:00 am - 2:00 pm.  In partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), California Department of Water Resources (DWR), and Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD), event attendees will learn how keep their family and pets safe during an emergency, fill sandbags, find evacuation routes, sign up for emergency alerts, and watch rescuers in action as they perform water rescues.


Founded in 1894, the Sacramento SPCA has been providing homeless animals with individual comfort, shelter, and love for more than 124 years.  They provide compassionate medical care to tens of thousands of animals annually and offer a variety of programs and services designed to keep people and pets together for life.

More Information: www.sspca.org

Sac Choral Society

MATHER, CA (MPG) - The Capital SouthEast Connector Joint Powers Authority has announced $20 million in grant funding previously secured through the California Transportation Commission’s (CTC) Local Partnership Program (LPP) available through Senate Bill 1 (SB 1), the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017, is secure following the failure of Proposition 6. This statewide proposition would have repealed SB 1, a 2017 law that generates $5.2 billion annually in new transportation funding that is permanently designated for road repairs and public transportation.

“The voters of California have spoken and, based on the outcome of Proposition 6, understand the importance of prioritizing funding sources to maintain our state’s transportation infrastructure,” said Derek Minnema, executive director of the Capital SouthEast Connector JPA. “The $20 million in funds previously secured through SB 1 will be invested judiciously to continue the advancement of the Connector, which will provide instant regional congestion relief to downtown Sacramento and close a critical rural-to-suburban connectivity gap here in our region.”

The Connector received the third largest statewide funding award of close to 90 grant applications for projects throughout California.

Earlier this year, the Sacramento Transportation Authority ranked the Connector as it’s No. 1 regional transportation project pursuing funding through the CTC’s LPP grant program.

The Connector closes a rural-to-suburban connectivity gap by transforming 34 miles of two-lane rural roads into a state-of-the-art, four-lane expressway connecting the communities of the City of Elk Grove, Sacramento County, City of Rancho Cordova, City of Folsom and El Dorado County. The new expressway will provide instant regional congestion relief to downtown Sacramento, provide parallel capacity to Highway 50, and an evacuation route for the southeastern part of Sacramento County. Project benefits also extend beyond the region as the Connector has been identified as a key project within California’s Central Valley Major International Trade Region, and will connect three U.S. Department of Transportation’s Primary Freight Network Routes that are the backbone of goods movement within the Central Valley.

The Connector JPA was formed in December 2006 and includes Sacramento County, El Dorado County and the cities of Elk Grove, Folsom and Rancho Cordova. It is responsible for the Connector’s planning, environmental review, engineering design, development and construction.

For more information, visit www.connectorjpa.net

 

Source: Randle Communications

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Here Come “The Sunshine Boys”

By Vanessa Voetsch  |  2018-11-18

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) – Check out this fun Citrus Heights production performed by local actors.

Al and Willie as "Lewis and Clark" were top-billed vaudevillians for over forty years. Now they aren't even speaking. When CBS requests them for a "History of Comedy" retrospective, a grudging reunion brings the two back together, along with a flood of memories, miseries and laughs. 

The play is written by Neil Simon and directed by Dan Cohen. The local show is featuring: Mark Cornfield, Stephen Kauffman, Shane Burrows, Erica Magee, and Torie Stoicich.

Some of the reviews: "It's ham on wry...Simon's sure footed craftsmanship and his one liners are as exquisitely apt as ever." - New York Post; "Delicious and oddly affecting." - The New York Times ; "Another hit for Simon in a shrewdly balanced, splendid and rather touching slice of the show biz life." - New York Daily News. 

Performance dates are Fridays and Saturdays at 8p.m. and Sundays at 4p.m. through November 25. All tickets are $15 for all ages (no infants please)

For more information or to make a reservation please call the theater at (916) 509-3445. Also see their website at www.theatreintheheights.com for more information and directions to the theater.

Theatre In The Heights is located at 8215 auburn Blvd., Suite G Citrus Heights, CA 95610.

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CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) - The Capitol Pops Concert Band continues its 22nd season with a free, open to the public holiday concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018, at the Rusch Park Gym, 7801 Auburn Blvd., in Citrus Heights.

Under the baton of Director Judith Steinle, CPCB will once again play traditional holiday favorites, seasonal musical hits and carols.

This performance, sponsored by the Sunrise Recreation and Park District and the City of Citrus Heights, is family friendly and a great way to usher in the holiday season. The two-hour concert includes a 20-minute intermission.

Various prizes will be on display for the raffle ticket drawings. In addition, there will be a silent auction on special, one-of-a kind items. The public also will have the opportunity to purchase a variety of colorful poinsettias after the concert concludes.  Longtime CPCB supporter Eisley Nursery of Auburn has donated a large poinsettia plant as a grand prize in support of the band's student scholarship fund.

Started in 1997, the CPCB has performed a diverse portfolio of high-quality, well-prepared music heard by thousands of concert-goers throughout Northern California.  Based in Citrus Heights, the self-supporting, nonprofit community band of about 50 musicians represents a wide cross-section of the Sacramento area. For more information on the Capitol Pops, visit www.capitolpops.org or its Facebook page. For more information, call (916) 725-5214.

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SACRAMENTO COUNTY, CA (MPG) - On November 17, 2018, at approximately 5:20 P.M., the California Highway Patrol (CHP) received reports of a traffic collision on Winding Way at Rampart Drive. CHP and Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Department personnel arrived on scene and discovered a bicyclist had been struck and killed by a motor vehicle. Preliminary investigation revealed a 50 year old man from Carmichael was driving his red Lexus RX 400 eastbound on Winding Way and had entered the intersection at Rampart Drive. At the same time, a 75 year old man from Sacramento had been riding his bicycle southbound on Winding Way from a shopping center when he entered the intersection directly in front of the Lexus. Subsequently, a collision occurred and the impact caused the bicyclist to be ejected from his bicycle onto the roadway surface.

The bicyclist was not utilizing a light while riding during hours of darkness and he was not wearing a helmet. The sobriety of the driver of the Lexus was evaluated and it was determined that drugs and or alcohol were not a factor in this collision.

The cause of this collision is under investigation. Any persons who can provide additional information regarding this collision are requested to contact the North Sacramento Area CHP office.

Any additional information about this news release should be directed to Officer Mike Zerfas who will be available at the CHP North Sacramento Area business phone number: (916) 348-2337, Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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Annual Wildlife Photo Contest Takes Flight

By Rick Reed  |  2018-11-18

 2015 Fall Photo Contest Winner from Sac County. Photo courtesy Rick Reed.

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - One picture. That’s all it takes to be a winner. Take your mobile or camera outside and give us your best shot of a bird or birds in your backyard, local park or other wild location! It’s easy.

Submit your picture on the Wildlife Care Association Facebook page as a message with photo attachment. Contest is open through December 31, 2018. Entries can be made in two categories- Under 12 years old you can enter FREE! Those over 12 are asked to include a minimum $5.00 donation to WCA on the Facebook donate link for each entry. (Under 18 years old? Ask your parents to help!)

Each photo may be entered once, but individuals may submit more than one. Enter often and donate to help the WCA heroes of nature save thousands of injured, orphaned and displaced wildlife every year. The non-profit wildlife rehabilitation volunteers depend on the community for their support giving wildlife a second chance to live.

The WCA Photo Contest winner will be awarded a special prize including a guided tour of the Dome at McClellan Park, their photo featured in the newsletter, posted at the rescue facility and on Facebook/Instagram as a hero of nature!

Submissions should include your email, the location photo was taken, and your best guess what type of bird this might be.  Enter @wildlifecareassociation on Facebook.

One picture will be chosen from submissions to determine a winner. WCA staff reserves the right to select a winner from content and other factors including artistic merit. All photos submitted become the property of WCA for its use in outreach, education and fundraising.

Snap some shots, submit them and let’s see if they fly! For more information call 916-965-WILD

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Salute to Our Heroes

Story and Picture by Susan Maxwell Skinner  |  2018-11-18

Military veterans and supporters joined a salute during November 11 observances in Carmichael. The Vietnam monument names students of La Sierra high School who died in the Vietnam War.

CARMICHAEL, CA (MPG) - Carmichael's Vietnam Memorial was central to this week’s Veterans Day commemorations. Flags, music and remembrances were shared by nearly 200 visitors.

The first-known California monument to the Vietnam War is in Earl J. Koobs Nature Area, beside the old La Sierra High School on Engle Road. First dedicated in 1973, the lofty steel edifice honors La Sierra graduates who died during Vietnam years. The nature preserve is named for La Sierra science teacher Earl J. Koobs, who fostered its establishment. Before his 2015 death, WW II veteran Koobs presided over many ceremonies honoring fallen La Sierra students.

Under the aegis of Carmichael Kiwanis, the nature area is now a center for community service. Many Boy Scout Eagle Scout projects have been completed in its five acres. Carmichael Organic Gardening Club maintains a butterfly garden and recently erected a Blue Star Marker honoring US those serving the US military.

Heroes named on the nature area’s monument are: Robert D. Anderson, Mark W. Burchard, Robert S. Bynes, Jerry Cowsert, Kenneth R. Escott, Gary R. Field, Herbert Frenzell, Frank Thornburg, Ralph Guarienti, Larry H. Morford, Thomas C. Pigg, Randall B. Rainville, Kim Richins, Jeffry Tharaldson, Robert A. Willis.

Earl J. Koobs Nature Area is open to visitors on the second Saturday of each month, from March to October. For information, go to www.carmichaelkiwanis.org  or visit the Koobs Nature Area site on Facebook.

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FAIR OAKS, CA (MPG) - Fair Oaks residents recently voted on Measure J, a $26.9 million general obligation bond, which would give the Fair Oaks Recreation and Park District (FORPD) the funds necessary to upgrade and renovate existing parks and acquire and develop land for new parks in the District. The language in the measure ensures that the funds can only be spent within the District on physical improvements to the parks. None of the money will go to increase District salaries.

Ralph Carhart is the current vice-chair of the FORPD board of directors. His term ends this year, and he ran for re-election on the November ballot. Carhart has thus far received the majority of votes, so a December vote by the FORPD board will likely result in Carhart’s appointment as board president, a term that will begin in January 2019.

According to Sacramento County’s office of Voter Registration and Elections, ballots for the November 6, 2018 General Election are still being processed and results are not final. Certified results will be reported by December 6, 2018. Of the ballots that have already been counted at the time of this writing, 67% are in favor of Measure J, so it is likely that the measure will pass.

Carhart said the District is “on pins and needles” waiting for the final results: “We are really hoping Measure J gets the necessary majority because otherwise it would take us 30 years to make the capital improvements in our Master Plan.” Because it is a bond measure, Measure J requires a two-thirds majority vote instead of a simple majority. Carhart explained that they wanted to put the proposal to the voters in this way to ensure the measure would only pass with solid local support.

Carhart said the District will use Measure J funds to begin some of their priority projects, such as repairing or replacing outdated restrooms, increasing safety in the parks by improving the lighting, and ensuring the parks are meeting all requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Other major projects will include installing new softball fields at Phoenix Park and implementing the first phase of replacing McMillan Center in Fair Oaks Park. Carhart’s plan is to create additional recreation space at McMillan Center by building an initial replacement structure that can be expanded and added to in the coming years.

Carhart is also excited about a new four-acre park in Gum Ranch, north of Bella Vista High School, which should be ready by this time next year. Carhart explained that Elliott Homes is building the park as part of their construction of a new community in the area. To mitigate for the construction’s environmental impact, Elliott Homes will be planting an oak mitigation bank of approximately one acre adjacent to Arcade Creek. The District is in negotiations with Sacramento County to acquire the mitigation land along with approximately four acres of flood plain in the area. Carhart hopes to use Measure J funds to develop the land into an extensive nature and recreation area.

A new park on Swallow way is also in the plans for Measure J funds. The parcel has already been deeded to the District by Sacramento County, and Carhart said that neighbors in the area are anxious for development to get underway.

A local independent citizens’ oversight committee will be established to oversee the expenditure of Measure J funds and ensure transparency and accountability. Carhart explained that this committee is vital to ensuring that the District does not act unilaterally, but instead is spending the money on what the community wants to see for the future of Fair Oaks parks.  

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SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - With the election just weeks away, the Yes on Prop 6 Gas Tax Repeal Campaign has released government documents and records showing numerous examples of “epic levels” of waste, fraud and abuse of gas tax funds and other taxpayer resources at Caltrans and local transportation agencies throughout California.

The records and documents were obtained through the California Public Records Act (CPRA) process and cover only materials received back from the CA Dept. of Transportation (Caltrans), local transportation agencies in San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange County, the Bay Area, and Sacramento. Other local government agencies also receive and spend gas tax funds - raising the question of how many more examples of waste of gas tax funds exist.

“These examples of outrageous waste of the gas tax and other taxpayer resources provide the best reason to vote YES on Prop 6 the Gas Tax Repeal Initiative,” said Carl DeMaio, chairman of the campaign. “Our existing gas tax funds are being wasted and we demand that these revelations of outrageous expenditures be immediately reformed before we give these people any more of our taxpayer dollars,” noted DeMaio.

“These outrageous examples of waste of our gas tax funds is proof that voters cannot trust California government agencies with even a penny more of their money until efficiency and accountability reforms can clean up these excessive expenditures,” said Carl DeMaio, Chairman of Yes on Prop 6 Gas Tax Repeal Campaign. “Voters can send a strong message by voting YES on Prop 6 to repeal the costly and unfair gas and car tax hikes,” DeMaio concluded.

Facts about this massive hike:

–Voting Yes on Prop 6 will repeal the car and gas tax, and ensures that any future car and gas taxes must be approved by the voters
–On Nov 1, 2017, Californians became subject to an additional tax of 12.5 cents more per gallon (20 cents more for diesel)
–Estimates suggest it will cost an average family of four $779 or more per family, per year
–The tax also hits business owners who rely on transporting goods, raising the cost of everything from apples to bread, and everything in between
–Vehicle license fees (car tax) will increase as much as $175 a year - striking the wallets of hard-working families across the state
–The tax revenue goes into the state’s General Fund, meaning there’s zero guarantee the money will be used to actually fund the transportation “fixes”  they claim will happen
–Nearly 1 million signatures were collected to qualify the measure on the November ballot; just over 550,000 were required

For more information go to GasTaxRepeal.org

 

 

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Job demand and hiring trends for the 4th Quarter

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Sacramento employers have slowed hiring with shortages of skills and applicants. However, they continue to seek expansion of workforces in the final Quarter of 2018. Down from sixty-six percent (66%) hiring in the previous three months, Pacific Staffing discovered in direct contacts with top regional employer’s fifty-seven percent (57%) will hire in October, November and December. Twenty percent (20%) of all companies report a lack of applicants as a major challenge.

While top regional employers, contacted by phone between August 23rd and September 21, will cut overall marketplace demand, those seeking workers are still motivated by expansion or growth needs in the workforce. Forty-one percent (41%) will hire for growth in the next three months with replacements within existing workforces accounting for thirty-two percent (32%) of employer demand in the Quarter ahead. Six percent (6%) of Sacramento companies also report some increased hiring for seasonal needs thru the next three months. Only one company polled reports plans to reduce workers with layoffs in Fourth Quarter (Q4) due to market slowdowns.

Seasonal shopping is going to be a gamble as Sacramento retailers polled were split 50/50 on hiring or not in October, November and December. Twenty percent of employers surveyed say simply finding applicants is a major challenge in meeting demands in the Sacramento market. Retention is another challenge. Signing bonuses and incentives like additional vacation or Flex time are being offered in the efforts to keep current skilled, experienced workers at the job and attract talent from outside the area.

One trend in employment and management appears to have lost some of the luster enjoyed in the past decade. When asked in the current booming economy with shortages of skills and applicants if ‘outsourcing’ work overseas is IN or OUT, fifty-eight percent (58%) of all Sacramento companies reported no interest in using it. While some regional employers have ‘outsourced’ and others have not, some are unable to and some forbidden to, outsourcing issues cited included ‘challenges’ in cost, management and additional paperwork in compliance with government rules.

Twenty-four (24%) of Sacramento companies report finding some specific success in utilizing out of market and international resources for printing, design, office or management functions and customer service needs. Skills in top demand for Q4 include drivers, sales, tech, warehouse, shipping and manufacturing. Employers also cite needs for specialized skills including escrow/mortgage, accounting/finance and construction trade workers.

For more information, employment blogs and market surveys go to www.pacificstaffing.com.

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