Tag Archives: yolo

Not working or underemployed due to the drought? Help available

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — JUNE 4, 2014 —

Yolo Food Bank has launched a program to help those in the county left unemployed or underemployed because of the state-wide drought. Many agricultural jobs, for example, have suffered during this year’s water shortage.

Through the “Drought Food Assistance Program,” the food bank will distribute prepacked food boxes during the month of June.  The program may continue after June, provided state funding is still available

The Yolo Food Bank promises a nutritionally balanced box of food -- enough to feed a family of four for five days (courtesy of Yolo Food Bank)

The Yolo Food Bank promises a nutritionally balanced box of food — enough to feed a family of four for five days (courtesy of Yolo Food Bank)

To qualify for drought food assistance participants must certify that they live in Yolo County and have either less work or no work because of the drought.  Participants affected by the drought will receive a 25-pound box of nutritionally balanced, non-perishable food, designed to provide food for a household of four people for five days.  The box will include such foods as apple sauce, canned vegetables, tomato sauce, vegetable and chicken noodle soup, peanut butter, dried pinto beans, rice, spaghetti, and oatmeal.

“We are glad to have the resources to help local families affected by California’s severe drought,” said Kevin Sanchez, Executive Director of Yolo Food Bank, an a press release.

To reach all areas of Yolo County, Yolo Food Bank will be working with six partner agencies to distribute meals at twelve sites.
West Sacramentans and Clarksburg residents may contact their local partner, Yolo County Children’s Alliance, at (530) 757-5558 or www.yolokids.org.

In addition to the 11 distributions facilitated by the Food Bank’s six partner agencies.  Yolo Food Bank will pass out drought food on Friday mornings from its warehouse in Woodland (1244 Fortna Avenue, Woodland CA 95776).  This distribution will occur from 7-8 a.m.

Contact Yolo Food Bank at (530) 668-0690 or visit  www.yolofoodbank.org.

 

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Fake employment offers: scam artists send you a bad check, ask you to wire them their fee

NEWS-LEDGER — MAY 28, 2014 —

From the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office —

District Attorney Jeff Reisig is warning citizens to be alert for offers of employment that turn out to be scams.  In one recent case, a Winters’ man was victimized and lost $3,500 after using Craigslist to find a driving job.  The victim never actually met with the employer and only communicated using text messaging.  The victim’s new “employer” sent him two paychecks as an advance and told the victim to deposit the checks, keep a portion for himself, and wire the remainder across the county.  By the time the victim learned that the checks were fraudulent, the wire transfer had already gone through, leaving the victim responsible for the loss.

A second report involved a citizen receiving a United States Postal Service Priority Mail package containing an offer to be a “Mystery Shopper.”  Included in the package were job duties and instructions to deposit the enclosed cashiers check, take out wages and then wire the remaining funds to the person posing as the employer.  This victim also was left responsible for the loss after he realized the checks were fake.

Scam artists use clever schemes to defraud vulnerable victims.  In these examples, many of the victims are desperately seeking employment. The scammers use telephones, mail, the internet and wire services to cross geographic boundaries and trick unsuspecting victims.  You can protect yourself by learning to recognize “red flags” of fraudulent activity like being paid up front for work that you have not completed or being asked to wire money to someone you have never met.

The District Attorney’s Office reminds those seeking employment that they should be very cautious when asked to cash checks or wire money for any reason.   We suggest you thoroughly check out any company offering you employment and get everything in writing. For more information on how to keep safe and avoid being scammed, please contact Enforcement Officer Derek Sorriano at the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office, (530) 406-4503.

 

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Villegas keeps seat; Johannessen falls short in bid for Assembly

City Council Member Mark Johannessen will not be in the November runoff election for State Assembly (News-Ledger photo)

City Council Member Mark Johannessen will not be in the November runoff election for State Assembly
(News-Ledger photo)

NEWS-LEDGER ONLINE — JUNE 4, 2014 —

Election results are still unofficial, but there have been no major changes in local results since the first votes were counted last night. Oscar Villegas successfully fended off a challenge from fellow Democrat Norma Alcala and will keep his seat on the Yolo County Board of Supervisors.

West Sacramento City Councilman Mark Johannessen did not make the runoff in the race for the District 7 seat in the California Assembly.

The election did not feature any West Sacramento city council or school board races.

Some key local results:

NORMA ALCALA believed the Yolo Board of Supervisors needed the perspective of a woman and Latina, but fell short on yesterday's ballot  (News-Ledger photo)

NORMA ALCALA believed the Yolo Board of Supervisors needed the perspective of a woman and Latina, but fell short on yesterday’s ballot
(News-Ledger photo)

YOLO COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS, DISTRICT 1 (Clarksburg and most of West Sacramento):

Villegas defeated Alcala 61.5 percent to 38.5 percent. Villegas earned 2,670 votes and Alcala had 1,668. Turnout in the district is listed as 23.1 percent.

In District 2, including Winters and part of Davis, Don Saylor ran unopposed. Matt Rexroad ran unopposed in District 3 (Woodland).

JUDGE OF THE YOLO COUNTY SUPERIOR COURT, DEPT. 3:

Janene Beronio defeated three competitors, earning 12,380 votes (or 53.5%). Beronio is currently a commissioner for the court. Second place in the race was John P. Brennan, with 17.1 percent of the vote, followed by Larenda Delaini of West Sacramento with 15.1 percent and Fredrick Cohen with 14.3 percent.

YOLO COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS

Jesse Ortiz edged out Sam Neustadt 51.6 percent to 48.4 percent (11,548 votes to 10,833).

COUNTY CLERK/RECORDER/ASSESSOR

Incumbent clerk/recorder Freddie Oakley, who oversees the elections department as part of her duties, defeated challenger David Schwenger 67.1 percent to 32.9 percent (15,381 to 7,540).

OTHER YOLO COUNTY RACES:

District Attorney Jeff Reisig, Public Guardian/Administrator Cass Sylvia and Sheriff Ed Prieto all ran unopposed.

CALIFORNIA ASSEMBLY, DISTRICT 7:

West Sacramento’s Mark Johannessen (currently on the local city council) came in fourth among a field of five. Democrats Kevin McCarty and Steve Cohn finished on top and will proceed to a November 4 runoff.

McCarty placed first with 34.6 percent of the vote (11,804 votes), followed by Cohn at 28.4 percent, Republican Ralph Merletti at 15.2 percent, Democrat Johannessen at 12.9 percent and Republican Oliver Ponce with 8.8 percent.

U.S. House of Representatives, District 6:

 

Democrat Doris Matsui, the incumbent, came in ahead of Republican challenger Joseph McCray, Sr., with 73.4% of the votes (38,349 votes) in this primary. McCray earned 13,914 votes for 26.6 percent. Both will move on to the general election in November.

GOVERNOR’S RACE

Democratic Governor  Edmond G. “Jerry” Brown earned 54.5 percent of the vote in the open primary, and will face second-place finisher Republican Neel Kashkari (19.0 percent) in the November primary. If Brown is reelected, he will be the first California governor to earn four terms.

 

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Villegas believes he’s right for the Yolo board of supervisors

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MAY 28, 2014 —

  Last week, the News-Ledger brought you an interview with Norma Alcala, who is running for the Yolo County Board of Supervisors. This week, we offer this chat with Oscar Villegas, who hopes to keep that seat.
  This race is part of the June 3 ballot.

By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

“This job is not one you can just sort of stumble into,” Oscar Villegas told the News-Ledger on Saturday. “You really need to understand the issues, the personalities, the different government components and the complexity of the issues. My ability to ‘not complicate the simple issues’ and to ‘not simplify the complex issues’ is important.”

OSCAR VILLEGAS (News-Ledger photo)

OSCAR VILLEGAS
(News-Ledger photo)

Villegas, took a seat on the Yolo County Board of Supervisors this year to represent Clarksburg and most of West Sacramento in “District 1.” It was a governor’s appointment, made to fill a vacancy made when Michael McGowan moved on to other things.

Villegas feels he’s made a good start on the board, and deserves to be re-elected on Tuesday’s ballot.
Challenger Normal Alcala, a fellow Democrat, has criticized Villegas for “double dipping” as both a paid full-time county supervisor and full-time employee of the state. But Villegas told the News-Ledger he is no longer a full-time state worker.

“What I’m doing right now is working part-time for the state, and full-time for the county,” he commented. “I don’t see myself increasing my time with the state.”

“I also have two full-time staff in my (board of supervisors) office.”

Villegas has always lived in West Sacramento. He grew up in the Bryte neighborhood in the city’s northwest, attending local schools and then Christian Brothers High School. He earned a degree in criminal justice from Sacramento State.

He said he has volunteered his time coaching Little League and soccer, working with Meals on Wheels and being civically involved. Twenty-two years ago, he married Katie Villegas, who is now a member of the local school board and the executive of the Yolo County Children’s Alliance. They have two kids and live in Southport, “a mile south of the Pheasant Club.”

“I have always been active,” said Oscar Villegas. “My first date with Katie was actually walking precincts for (Yolo Sheriff) Bob Martinez. I said, ‘What are you doing Saturday,’ and she said, ‘nothing.’ I said, ‘Great, I’m walking precincts – why don’t you join me?’”

During college in the 1980s, Villegas said he was doing school projects on the issue of whether what was then “East Yolo” should become a city. He looked at the government studies and reports, concluding it should.
It did, actually. The neighborhoods of “East Yolo” became West Sacramento in 1987.

Villegas eventually served on the city’s planning commission (he was appointed first by Wes Beers and then by current mayor Christopher Cabaldon), and then served as a city councilman for 13 years.

“We’ve worked very well together,” he said of Cabaldon. Villegas has not, though, endorsed council colleague Mark Johannessen in Johannessen’s current run for state assembly.

Villegas now works as a field representative for the state board of state and community corrections, working with local governments helping to train corrections personnel.

That job meshes a bit with one of Yolo County’s big current issues, called “realignment.” That’s a move by the State of California to move some state prisoners into local jails, and let some prisoners out of jail under supervised programs. It’s meant to combat state prison overcrowding. Villegas said Yolo County is doing an effective job so far trying to manage this process and prevent some of these released prisoners from re-offending.

“Our communities cannot afford to find out that the policies the county has instituted have not worked, and we have this perpetual recidivism, and it’s unsafe,” he commented.

To that end, Yolo needs to study which classes of prisoners need to be targeted for services and support to prevent them from committing new crimes.

“Now, you have the sheriff, the D.A., the public defender, the probation department and the cities all working together to figure out how you are going to manage this population if more people are going to be let out into our communities rather than in jail. . . What are the best chances to provide those programs so they don’t recidivate and cause new crimes?”

Villegas said he is opposed to the governor’s “tunnel” proposal for the water system. But does he have a favored alternative?

“Storage is a big (alternative), and there is no question there is a need statewide for water, and for a better way to manage our water,” he answered. “I don’t know if there is any one option right now that is going to serve everyone’s needs.”

Yolo County’s government is now recovering from drastic budget cuts during the recession. That trimmed county services.  He’s cautiously optimistic things are now on the mend.

“One of the things it’s easy to forget is that one of the county’s core responsibilities is being that safety net for when people are struggling for whatever reason,” said Villegas. “Whether you’re in need of mental health services, or substance abuse help or job search services – there’s a range of things that happen in the course of your life.”

“I know, because my family had to use it when my father was laid off from the railroad,” he said. “It was a struggle for my parents. I remember specifically having to use food stamps to purchase our meals at the end of the day. I want to make sure that. . . people know we’re here and (help) as easy to access as possible.”

Villegas said he supports the county’s policy goals of preserving agricultural land and trying to avoid development on the acres that separate Yolo’s individual cities.

“That’s the culture and philosophy of the board, but it’s tough,” he said. “It’s not easy to do that. But I agree, that’s certainly the right policy and I certainly subscribe to that.”

So far in his shortened first term, Villegas feels he has brought a “pragmatic” approach to the Yolo board of supervisors and that he’s “been embraced” by his new colleagues. He feels that it has helped that he already had a rapport with various leaders in the region.

  “To be able to pick up the phone and talk to a supervisor in Sacramento or a supervisor in Solano County, or the mayor of a city here in the region is how you get things done,” said Villegas. “I feel very confident I can pick up the phone and have that conversation.”

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Copyright News-Ledger 2014