Author Archives: Editor

West Sacramento Riverfront Renaissance Projects Showcased

By Jan Dalske for the News Ledger
Anyone who was interested in finding out what is happening along the Downtown Riverfront was invited to attend the event that was recently held at the City of West Sacramento’s Corporation Yard. The details of all the projects that are currently in the planning stages were displayed. CWS staff members were on hand to answer any questions. In an effort to obtain “Community Feedback”, a card which asked for any thoughts, comments or questions about the various projects was handed out to all attendees.
The Southern Riverfront area includes the Pioneer Bluff and Stone Lock reuse Master Plan. The CWS has been working on ways to what they refer to as “re-envision” the historic waterfront from industrial uses to a vibrant and active mixed-use community.
Plans for the Bridge District were first introduced in late 2010. It is also a mixed-use development. Located from the Tower Bridge to the Interstate 80 overpass, it is directly on the Sacramento Riverfront in West Sacramento. The expected build-out will include 9.6 million square feet of residential and commercial development.
The Sacramento Docks Area Specific Plan is a future mixed-use development project which is in close proximity to historic Sacramento, Raley Field Stadium and the Crocker Art Museum. This plan began in 2009 with the adoption of a Specific Plan. The adoption of this SP represented the final stage in a planning process which included the Sacramento Riverfront Master Plan (2003) and the Docks Area Concept Plan (2005).
Miller Park Redevelopment Area was included in the 2003 Riverfront Master Plan. This area is proposed as a residential neighborhood clustered around Miller Park and the marina. It would be a mixed-use development which would include restaurants and retail while promoting connections to the riverfront.
Broadway Complete Street includes the Broadway Corridor, which is home to a variety of businesses, residents, government facilities, industrial centers, and cultural hot spots in the CWS. The goal is to identify the changes that will be necessary to make this historic corridor a more inviting and safe place for all travelers, including pedestrians, cyclists, transit users and motorists. The preliminary plan was developed in April of 2016.
Other Sacramento River crossings include the I Street Bridge Replacement Project, the I Street Bridge Deck Conversion and the R Street to Garden Street Pedestrian Bridge. These projects will be coordinated with the city of Sacramento. The ISBRP will include a new bridge crossing upstream of the existing ISB between the Sacramento Railyards and West Sacramento’s Washington planned developments.
West Sacramento will be partnering with the city of Sacramento to study the feasibility of converting the upper deck of the historic I Street Bridge to a bicycle and pedestrian crossing, following the construction of the C Street/ Railyards Bridge. The study will begin in the Summer of 2017.
The 2003 Riverfront Master Plan identified a proposed new pedestrian bridge which would connect R Street on the Sacramento side across the Sacramento River to Garden Street in West Sacramento. The new bridge would provide an additional pedestrian and bicycle connection and access to destinations in both cities. The crossing will be a movable bridge and a new signature landmark for the area.
All of these projects will take time, but, for both the cities of Sacramento and West Sacramento, they will be worth waiting for.

How West Sacramentans celebrated the Fourth of July

By Michele Townsend

To 8-year-old (“About to turn 9!”), Ella Godina, the Fourth of July is about “Staying up all night, with lots of fun and fireworks!” To 15-year-old Laura Garcia, “Independence Day is a day to spend with family, having fun. And it’s a day that the whole neighborhood watches fireworks together… when everyone is outside having fun.” The fact is, these girls are absolutely right! We all know that 241 years ago, on July 4, 1776, the Thirteen Colonies claimed their independence from England by signing the Declaration of Independence which led to the formation of the United States. But, did you know that at that same time, the way in which we celebrate Independence Day was also declared!? John Adams envisioned how the celebration should take place. He stated about July 4th celebrations “It will be celebrated… With pomp (ceremony and splendid display) and parade…bonfires and illuminations (fireworks) from one end of the continent to the other.” This was declared before the Declaration was even signed!

The first Independence Day was actually held on July 8, 1776 at the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence in Independence Square, Philadelphia. There was music being played by bands, and the ringing of bells. This is where the term “let freedom ring” came from. One year later, on July Fourth (and forever to be on July Fourth) 1777, Independence Day was celebrated by “Adjourning Congress and celebrating with bonfires, bells and fireworks” This day was forever to be known as the day of celebrating freedom. The freedom of being our own country, and the freedoms that brought us.

We the People, now a Nation, were free to speak how we saw fit. We were free to worship whatever religion we chose. And because we had the freedom to speak, religion has always been controversial. Everyone has their own view of right and wrong. Not only in religion, but in everything! We have terms like “In God We Trust” on our money, and “One Nation under God” in our Pledge of Allegiance. But because of the freedoms that we are celebrating, it doesn’t say… or restrict… us to which God. It could be my God, it could be yours. But, in this country, we are free to choose. Perhaps the Forefathers had the insight when they wrote about the Freedom of Religion, that the U.S. would welcome the blessing and guidance of all Gods. Regardless, we became an independent country that is based on the importance of freedom, That freedom still stands true today. Pat Bobo, age 32, said, “It’s about Patriotism, but I’m not really proud of our government right now, so I pretty much just party and shoot off fireworks. It’s not much deeper than that.” Again, love or hate what people say, but the freedom of speech is a wonderful thing!

To some people however, the Fourth of July celebration means much more! It may still include fireworks, patriotic music, red white and blue clothes, barbecue, beer and apple pie… but it is a day for many to pay special tribute and send extra prayers to the men and women of the military. A thank you for our for those who guard and protect those very freedoms against anyone or anything that threatens them… a day to sit back and realize how good we’ve got it, and why that is. Stacy Evans, who is “rockin 46” said very enthusiastically “It’s about Independence, Freedom and red, white and blue all the way!” Yet Donna Reber, age 71, says that to her “4th of July means that a bunch of people are going out to spend a bunch of money on getting drunk and fireworks and make her dogs go crazy while she sits there trying to calm them down.”

Let’s all just be happy that in this country, because of those people, on that day, in 1776…. We were able to celebrate life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Girls softball team eligible to play at the California State Games, looking for donations

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Congratulations to the West Sacramento Girls Softball (WSGS) 10U-All Star Team in attaining a berth to play at the California State Games on July 13 -16, 2017, in San Diego. The WSGS 10U-All Star team played hard on June 24-25, at the USA Softball Association Championship tournament, to win their way to the Championship game. The team is asking for help from the community and businesses for donations and sponsors to provide our girls the opportunity to play in San Diego. If you would like to donate or sponsor the WSGS 10U All Star Team, or need additional information, please contact Rebecca Valencia via email rebec_v@yahoo.com or phone 916-718-5831. The team would appreciate any and all help it can get.

AB 1250 Would Significantly Erode Ability to Provide Services for Most Vulnerable

The County of Yolo sent a letter to the California State Legislature signaling its strong opposition to Assembly Bill 1250 (Jones-Sawyer). At its core, AB 1250 seeks to stop counties from contracting with community-based organizations (CBOs), nonprofits, local businesses and other private providers of quality services on which counties and their residents rely. Counties contract with organizations and businesses that have the expertise, capacity or the ability to deliver services more efficiently.

AB 1250 has passed the Assembly and will be heard in the Senate Governance and Finance Committee on July 5, 2017.

“We routinely contract for health and mental health care, social services and emergency medical services,” said Yolo County Administrator Patrick Blacklock. “The constraints contained within AB 1250 will jeopardize our ability to provide these vital services to our county’s most vulnerable residents.

Proponents of the bill claim it will not limit contracting with non-government groups, but the clear intent of AB 1250 is to prohibit these private contracts. The bill imposes significant new restrictions and layers of bureaucracy designed to stop counties from contracting for local services. For instance, the bill requires CBOs, nonprofits and local businesses to disclose personal information about its employees and officers, including salary and other private information. This not only raises significant privacy concerns, but it will chill private sector’s willingness to enter into contracts with counties to provide services. It also requires contractors to disclose extensive information on a monthly basis. These auditing and review requirements could create unnecessary gaps and delays in service delivery that can pose detrimental outcomes for the people benefiting from these programs.

By restricting counties’ abilities to provide services in the most cost-effective manner, AB 1250 will also increase costs for taxpayers and reduce funding available for other local services. For many fundamental programs, it will not be a matter of who will provide the service but if they can even be offered at all.

“The role of local government is to determine the most effective way to deliver critical services in our communities,” said Yolo County Board of Supervisors Chair Duane Chamberlain. “We do not need another mandate that dictates how we govern our county or that impedes our ability to deliver high-quality and cost-effective services to local residents.”