Tag Archives: use

EDITORIAL: West Sacramento’s water meters should be running

NEWS-LEDGER EDITORIAL — AUG 27, 2014 —

In this time of drought, most West Sacramento residents have water meters that are going unused.

It’s like this:

Homes built since 1992 have come with water meters attached. Older homes didn’t. The City of West Sacramento is chipping away at this deficit by installing water meters neighborhood by neighborhood, until some point several years from now when every home has a water meter.

It’s too expensive, officials believe, to finish this retrofit job all at once.

So as it stands (and you can see recent issues of the News-Ledger for more information) about two-thirds of West Sacramento’s homes now have water meters. In theory, these 8,400 residential customers could be billed according to how much water they use. Instead of paying a flat rate, no matter how much they use their taps, they could be billed “volumetrically.”

But even though 8,400 West Sacramento’s homes have meters, meters are only being used to bill about 11 percent of those homes. The rest are still paying a flat rate.  This is because metered billing is still voluntary in this city. Even if you have a meter installed, you will keep paying a flat water rate unless you opt into metered billing. You have to call and ask the city to switch.

If you don’t make that call, you’ll pay the same flat rate for your water service regardless of whether you are a water hero or a water hog.

With metered billing, the city can set a base rate for modest users of water and charge them a little less. It could then charge heavy water users extra, encouraging them to scale back. Billing by meters, quite simply, will result in water conservation. When people have to pay for what they use, they use less.

Why don’t West Sacramento officials work harder to transition everyone with a water meter into the metered billing system?

Because they want to keep things simple. They don’t want some water customers billed on a flat rate because they don’t have meters yet, while others are forced into a metered rate. So the city plan is to wait several years until everyone has a water meter, and then switch everybody at once.

West Sacramento has made a choice between a simple plan and a plan that maximizing water savings. Water saving took second place. Since there’s no guarantee when this drought will come to an end, that’s not a very wise or very progressive local policy.

A better option would be to keep installing meters, and to give every metered home a grace period before it’s switched to metered billing. That would be in keeping with the spirit of State Water Code Section 527.

  Send your local opinion to steve@news-ledger.com. Please use your real name. Please also include your address and phone number (address and phone are not for publication.)

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Copyright News-Ledger 2014

West Sac fireworks season starts noon today

BYRON PAIGE (second from left) and other volunteers in a fireworks booth at the corner of Lake Washington Boulevard and Jefferson Boulevard in 2012. This booth was staffed by partners from Our Lady of Grace church and school and the Knights of Columbus. (News-Ledger file photo)
BYRON PAIGE (second from left) and other volunteers in a fireworks booth at the corner of Lake Washington Boulevard and Jefferson Boulevard in 2012. This booth was staffed by partners from Our Lady of Grace church and school and the Knights of Columbus. (News-Ledger file photo)

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — JUNE 25, 2014 (UPDATED) —

Love it or hate it, the Fourth of July fireworks season in West Sacramento begins this weekend.

Fireworks judged “safe and sane” can be sold at approved booths  in the City of West Sacramento from Saturday, July 28, to Friday, July 4. Permitted hours are noon to 10 p.m. on the first day (Sat., July 28) and 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. on other days.  The hours at individual booths may vary.

The same fireworks are legal for you to use from noon on Saturday, June 28 through noon on Sunday, July 6.

City officials allow fireworks to be sold by nonprofit and religious groups at a limited number of booths in the city, mostly in shopping centers.  Booth permits are awarded by a lottery after each group submits an application.

This year’s fireworks booth vendors, and the locations of their booths:

— Boosters for International Gymnastics: Arteaga’s parking lot, 940 Sacramento Avenue.

— Lighthouse Christian Ministries: Lowe’s parking lot, 2250 Lake Washington Boulevard.

— Our Lady of Grace School: Papa Murphy’s parking lot, 2455 Jefferson Blvd. (at Lake Washington).

— River City Christian Academy: Wal-Mart parking lot, 755 Riverpoint Court.

—  Sikh Temple Sacramento: across from the temple at 850 Walnut Ave. (at Evergreen).

— West Sacramento Education Foundation: Nugget parking lot, 2050 Town Center Plaza.

— West Sacramento Little League: Raley’s parking lot, 1601 West Capitol Ave.

— Youth for Christ Ministries: Safeway parking lot, 1298 West Capitol Ave.

Public fireworks displays require a city permit.

Raley Field will include a fireworks show the night of July 4 as part of  “Fourth on the Field,” with local food trucks lined up on the baseball field’s warning track, live music from Nunchuck Taylor, interactive games, a children’s area and then a fireworks show. $5 for kids under 12, $10 for those 12 and up, and $15 for “Solon Club” tickets for those 21 and up. Visit the box office or Ticketmaster.

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Copyright News-Ledger 2014

What do you do with an old courthouse?

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — NOV 6, 2013 —

News-Ledger Staff

What would you do with this landmark courthouse building erected in 1917? Would you convert it to office space? A museum? A school? Some sort of public market?

Now that Yolo County is constructing a replacement court, the old structure in Woodland will lose its original purpose. So county officials are looking to “consider alternative and innovative approaches to the reuse of the facility,” reports spokesperson Beth Gabor.

Yolo County Courthouse, finished in 1917 and seen here in 2011 (public domain photo/Wikipedia Commons)

Yolo County Courthouse, finished in 1917 and seen here in 2011 (public domain photo/Wikipedia Commons)

So, just what will you have to work with?

You get a building on the National Registry of Historic Places that was designed with Greek and Roman influences, encompasses 50,000 square feet and sits on 2.75 acres along Court Street, a block away from Woodland’s main drag.

“Yolo County’s objective is to consider this property in its suburban context as a fully utilized and valued asset that invites innovative design,” said Gabor. “Potential use could involve a lease of the property from the county. Any future use would need to take into account historic preservation restrictions and environmental conditions.”

Gabor quotes Mindi Nunez, deputy county administrator:

“We intend to use the ideas received from citizens, developers and others for planning purposes to make strategic decisions regarding future use of this property.”

Interested parties can arrange a tour by calling (530) 666-8426.

Ideas may be submitted by email (mindi.nunes@yolocounty.org) or mail (Office of the Yolo County Administrator, Attn: Mindi Nunes, 625 Court St., Suite 202, Woodland CA 95695).

For more information on submitting ideas, visit www.yolocounty.org.

Ideas are due by November 25.

Copyright News-Ledger 2013

Public jogging hours at RCHS track

[adrotate group=”10″] FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER —

The rubber track at River City High School is now open for public use during certain hours, for those who have an account with the city recreation department.

Char Ghio, the school’s athletic director, told the News-Ledger that the policy is new.

“It’s open Monday and Wednesday nights from 7:30-8:30 a.m., and Saturday mornings from 8:30-10:30,” said Ghio. “The schedule is going to change with my sports program schedule.”

The track measures a quarter mile around, she said.

How do you sign up to use it?

A representative at the city recreation department said you can do so by opening an account at the Recreation Center facility next to RCHS on Raider Lane. Getting a “rec card” costs $5, she said.

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