City Open for Comprehensive Transit Plan Bids

By Shelly Lembke  |  2017-01-13
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Citrus Heights is ready to revisit its Comprehensive Transit Plan and will now be taking bids from interested companies. According to the city’s Transit Plan, qualified firms can register with the city online or through the General Services Department.

Per the city of Citrus Heights, “This project is federally funded and is subject to the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Policy.” At this juncture, the city is searching for professional consulting services to “develop a Comprehensive Transit Plan and recommendations for the City.”

The General Services Department selection process begins with Requests for Proposals (RFP) and then evaluates the proposals and creates consultant teams to determine which companies to interview.

Part of the city’s requirements is ongoing collaboration with city staff and “significant outreach with Citrus Heights residents and community stakeholders” via surveys, open houses, focus groups and personal as well as group interviews.

According to the city, “Engagement shall be designed to obtain feedback on current services, and assess demand, preferences and community priorities for public transportations services.” The chosen consultant must, according to Citrus Heights, “ensure all public outreach events are publicly noticed to promote maximum attendance.” This will include website, media releases, public notices and surveys and more. Media and translation for Spanish-speaking residents is also required.

The ability work well with other local transit entities is also a stated necessity. According to the City’s current documentation, “The Project includes ongoing and regular coordination with RT (Regional Transit) as one of the Project partners. In addition, the Consultant shall coordinate as appropriate with other local agencies… potentially impacting Citrus Heights transit users, including Roseville Transit, Placer County Transit Authority, Folsom Transit services and the City of Rancho Cordova’s Transit Division.”

The selected consulting firm must show Scope of Work, Project Management, Personnel and Staffing, Qualifications, Experience and References, Federal/State Funded Project Experience and Quality and Responsiveness of the Proposal. Interested parties can contact the city at GSD-Mailbox@citrusheights.net or 916 727 4770. Proposals are due by 2 pm January 20, 2017.


Major League Lacrosse All-Star Game Coming to Bonney Field in 2017

Source: Cal Expo  |  2017-01-13

Along with the All-Star Game, MLL has more exciting activities planned for Friday, July 7 and Saturday, July 8. Before the All-Star Game there will be a FanFest at Bonney Field where fans can meet MLL players, enjoy live music and interactive exhibits.

The world's best lacrosse players are coming to Sacramento, CA. Major League Lacrosse has chosen Bonney Field at Cal Expo as the site for the 16th All-Star Game in 2017. The MLL All-Star Game will take place on Saturday, July 8 at 6 p.m. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at www.ticketmaster.com.

Along with the All-Star Game, MLL has more exciting activities planned for Friday, July 7 and Saturday, July 8. Before the All-Star Game there will be a FanFest at Bonney Field where fans can meet MLL players, enjoy live music and interactive exhibits. The All-Star Shootout Tournament presented by ADVNC Lacrosse and the All-Star Skills Competition will take place at Cherry Island Sports Complex in Rio Linda, CA. More information about those events can be found at www.advnclacrosse.com.

MLL chose to host the 2017 All-Star Game in northern California because it is the epicenter of lacrosse in the state of California and arguably, the Pacific Coast. According to US Lacrosse, there are more youth lacrosse players registered with US Lacrosse in the Northern California region than in greater Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego combined. Also, the region played host to the San Francisco Dragons, an MLL franchise that played from 2006-08.

This top-caliber event is just the latest addition to hit the pitch of Bonney Field, which is also home to the Sacramento Republic FC and PRO Rugby Sacramento. For more information about the MLL All-Star Game excitement see news.majorleaguelacrosse.com.

Cal Expo is home to the California State Fair and plays host to hundreds of other signature events each year. The Cal Expo property is home to Bonney Field, a premier sports and entertainment venue with seating of 11,000.


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North Tahoe In Storm Recovery Mode; Bracing for Holiday Weekend Challenges

Source: Chris Gray-Garcia, County of Placer  |  2017-01-13

There is light at the end of the snow tunnel in eastern Placer County including Donner Summit and the Tahoe area, with snow expected to taper off Thursday night.  The forecast shows several dry days ahead for residents and visitors over the holiday weekend. However, as businesses and residents continue to dig out from nearly 12 feet of snow over the last 10 days, the challenges are far from over.

Placer County officials say they welcome visitors to Lake Tahoe for what is surely going to be a beautiful holiday weekend, but that guests should come with plenty of patience and an expectation that challenges remain. Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Jennifer Montgomery, whose 5th District includes eastern Placer County, is encouraging people to come up and play, but only if they come prepared. “With some remaining power outages and deep snow,” she said, “visitors should come with an expectation that in some cases it might be like camping out in your own home.”

Many areas are still without power and there are downed power lines and trees scattered throughout the region. As snow continues to fall, county Public Works crews are continuously plowing the 150 miles of streets that fall within their area of responsibility. Caltrans is responsible for plowing the highways.

A considerable avalanche danger remains in effect in many parts of the Sierra, and those considering traveling into the backcountry are strongly advised to check the Sierra Avalanche Center daily report (http://www.sierraavalanchecenter.org) before traveling into uncontrolled areas.

“As of Thursday, there are still significant safety issues remaining in Tahoe,” said Jennifer Merchant, Placer County’s deputy county executive officer for Lake Tahoe. “But it’s also access challenges that people should be aware of. Many residential streets have limited access. With 10 feet of snow plowed up on either side, many roads are down to one lane. It will be a beautiful holiday weekend, but it may take us a few days to truly dig ourselves out of this storm and get back to normal.”

Area businesses – retail, restaurants and even resorts – may be challenged to be fully operational as their employees may still be struggling to get to work.

Merchant recommends that anyone planning to stay in vacation rentals in the residential neighborhoods should check with their host or rental company in advance to ensure the home has power and is accessible. She also advises checking resort websites prior to driving there to learn whether they are open and fully operational, in order to minimize unnecessary travel.

To be prepared for whatever might await you, officials recommend driving a four-wheel drive vehicle and carrying chains (cables are not recommended), and have water, food, blankets and extra clothing in your car. Additionally, to ensure the power is on in the community where you are planning to stay, please check Liberty Utilities website (www.libertyutilities.com) before you travel.

“Undoubtedly, for those who are able to come up and enjoy the weekend here, it will be great skiing, snowboarding or whatever your favorite snow-play activity might be,” said Merchant. “But please understand that we’ve basically been sheltering in place for three days, and we’ve got a lot of catch-up to do before the next storm comes in next week.”


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Local Sailor Participates in Pacific Partnership

Source: Navy Office of Community Outreach  |  2017-01-12

Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 2nd Class Thomas Williams (shown above), from Sacramento, California, assigned to the Blackjacks of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 21 U.S. 
--Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Trevor Kohl-rus/Released

Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 2nd Class Thomas Williams, from Sacramento, California, assigned to the Blackjacks of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 21, prepares to jump into the water during a rehearsal for a Pacific Partnership 2016 search and rescue drill.

During the drill, aviation rescue swimmers hoisted simulated casualties from the water into an MH-60S helicopter for medical evacuation to hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19). The Pacific Partnership search and rescue field training exercise spanned across three locations in Padang and included a water rescue, a field hospital for patient triage and transport, and a mass casualty at a local soccer field.

The day's events were facilitated by Tentara Nasional Indonesia, local first responders and the Pacific Partnership humanitarian assistance and disaster relief team. This is the fifth time Pacific Partnership has visited Indonesia. Partner nations are working side-by-side with local organizations during disaster response training, civil engineering projects, Women, Peace, and Security seminars, medical subject matter expert exchanges and a live field training exercise aimed at improving the capacity of local government, civilian agencies and partner militaries to collectively respond in crisis.


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Girl Scout Cookies: 100 years, 9 Cookies, 5 Skills, One Purpose!

Source: Girl Scouts Heart of Central California  |  2017-01-12

The five skills that participating in Girl Scouts build in future Girl Leaders are; goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics. 
--Photo courtesy of Girls Scouts of America

Building Girl Leaders One Package at a Time

This year marks the 100th year since Girl Scouts first started selling cookies. The cookie sale teaches valuable life skills and the proceeds, which all stay local, support their adventures and community service projects all year long!

Girl Scouts nationwide are celebrating this 100th cookie-versary with a brand new S’mores Cookie and you’re among the first in the country to try it! The cookies are available to order starting January 13. Look for Girl Scouts with order forms! For the third year running, the cost of Girl Scout Cookies is $5 per package.

The cookies arrive in Sacramento on February 18 at the Girl Scout Cookie MegaDrop at Raley Field. They are expecting to distribute more than 100,000 cases of cookies to Girl Scout troops throughout Northern and Central California. Cookies will be available through booth sales starting February 24.

The five skills that participating in Girl Scouts build in future Girl Leaders are; goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics.

Girl Scouts is the world’s most successful organization dedicated to creating girl leaders, with 3.2 million active members and more than 59 million alumnae. Since its founding in 1912, women have explored new fields of knowledge, learned valuable skills and developed strong core values through Girl Scouting. The Girl Scout organization has shaped the lives of the majority of female senior executives and business owners, two-thirds of women in Congress, and virtually every female astronaut.

The national organization is Girl Scouts of the USA; the local council is Girl Scouts Heart of Central California (GSHCC). GSHCC is devoted to building Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers and Leaders (G.I.R.L.s) in Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, Colusa, El Dorado, Glenn, Mariposa, Merced, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Solano, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tuolumne, Yolo and Yuba counties.


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Tax Filing Season Begins January 23

Source: Internal Revenue Service  |  2017-01-12

The Internal Revenue Service has announced that the nation’s tax season will begin Monday, Jan. 23, 2017 and reminded taxpayers claiming certain tax credits to expect a longer wait for refunds.

The IRS will begin accepting electronic tax returns that day, with more than 153 million individual tax returns expected to be filed in 2017. The IRS again expects more than four out of five tax returns will be prepared electronically using tax return preparation software.

Many software companies and tax professionals will be accepting tax returns before Jan. 23 and then will submit the returns when IRS systems open. The IRS will begin processing paper tax returns at the same time. There is no advantage to filing tax returns on paper in early January instead of waiting for the IRS to begin accepting e-filed returns.

The IRS reminds taxpayers that a new law requires the IRS to hold refunds claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) until Feb. 15. In addition, the IRS wants taxpayers to be aware it will take several days for these refunds to be released and processed through financial institutions. Factoring in weekends and the President’s Day holiday, the IRS cautions that many affected taxpayers may not have actual access to their refunds until the week of Feb. 27.

“For this tax season, it’s more important than ever for taxpayers to plan ahead,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said. “People should make sure they have their year-end tax statements in hand, and we encourage people to file as they normally would, including those claiming the credits affected by the refund delay. Even with these significant changes, IRS employees and the entire tax community will be working hard to make this a smooth filing season for taxpayers.”

The IRS also reminds taxpayers that they should keep copies of their prior-year tax returns for at least three years. Taxpayers who are changing tax software products this filing season will need their adjusted gross income from their 2015 tax return in order to file electronically. The Electronic Filing Pin is no longer an option. Taxpayers can visit IRS.Gov/GetReady for more tips on preparing to file their 2016 tax return.

The filing deadline to submit 2016 tax returns is Tuesday, April 18, 2017, rather than the traditional April 15 date. In 2017, April 15 falls on a Saturday, and this would usually move the filing deadline to the following Monday – April 17. However, Emancipation Day – a legal holiday in the District of Columbia – will be observed on that Monday, which pushes the nation’s filing deadline to Tuesday, April 18, 2017. Under the tax law, legal holidays in the District of Columbia affect the filing deadline across the nation.


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William Jessup Baseball Opening Day January 21

Source: Amy Looney, Placer Valley Tourism  |  2017-01-12

McBean Park Stadium Renovations Bring Baseball Back to Lincoln

On Saturday, January 21 the McBean Park Stadium will officially become home to the William Jessup University (WJU) Warriors Baseball team as they kick-off their season with an opening day pre-game celebration as well as a double header. With phase one of the renovations on the historic McBean Park Stadium complete it is time to play some ball!

The City of Lincoln, WJU and Placer Valley Tourism (PVT) joined forces in 2015 and have been instrumental in the revitalization of the stadium with their significant financial contributions to the project.

Improvements that have been completed include irrigation and renovation of the natural grass outfield, synthetic turf infield, fencing of the entire perimeter of the field, extension of dugouts, electrical scoreboards and removal of the chain link backstop that was replaced with nylon netting to enhance the view for spectators.

The tailgate-style opening day celebration will begin at 9 a.m. with a fun kids zone, BBQ and more. Gates open at 10 a.m. with the Warriors first game of the double header starting at 11:05 a.m. against Corban University from Salem, Oregon.

Heather Hilton, PVT's Board Chair and Senior Director of Sales for the Larkspur Landing in Roseville, will be throwing out the first pitch to get the crowd going and the competition started.

"We couldn't be more thrilled to see that first pitch at McBean Park," said Lance Von Vogt, WJU Athletic Director.  "The excitement on campus and in the community is palpable; I mean you can really feel it."

Von Vogt also commented on the preparation the WJU baseball team and Coach Hankins have been putting in to build that strong foundation that will undoubtedly lead them to becoming a nationally recognized collegiate baseball program.

"Baseball has a long history in Lincoln," stated Matt Brower, City Manager for the City of Lincoln.  "January 21, 2017 will mark the return of this great tradition to Downtown Lincoln."

About Placer Valley Tourism
Placer Valley Tourism (PVT) is made up for the 23 hotels in Roseville, Rocklin and Lincoln, California. PVT recruits and supports hundreds of annual events with grants, marketing, volunteers and other services as needed. To learn more about how PVT can help bring your event here, visit www.playplacer.com or call 916-773-5400.


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Placer County Opens Emergency Overnight Shelter at Tahoe City Public Utility District Office

Source: Scott Sandow, County of Placer  |  2017-01-12

Placer County will open an emergency shelter for tonight at the Tahoe City Public Utility District office.

The TCPUD office is currently open as a place to warm up and charge phones and will remain open to overnight guests. Parking is available at TCPUD. Service animals will be the only pets the shelter can accommodate.

The shelter will be available from 5 p.m. until Friday morning. If there are no shelter guests after 8 p.m., the shelter is likely to close. The site is expected to return to a warming and charging center in the morning.

The Tahoe City Public Utility District office is located at 221 Fairway Drive in Tahoe City. Shelter coordinators can be reached at 530-412-0323.


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Placer Zoning Change Offers More Options for Permanent Homeless Shelters

Source: Chris Gray-Garcia, County of Placer  |  2017-01-11

Placer County will have more options now when seeking locations for homeless shelters for temporary, emergency stays after the county board of supervisors voted today to change its zoning ordinance to allow more flexibility.

The change was approved by a 4-1 vote, with District 3 Supervisor Jim Holmes voting against.

The action is a next step in Placer’s ongoing effort to identify several locations for permanent shelters to better serve the homeless throughout the county. All of the board members have expressed support for moving the county’s current temporary shelter at the Placer County Government Center campus to a more suitable location as soon as possible.

Under the zoning text amendment, shelters will be allowed in industrial, industrial park and heavy commercial areas. Shelters were already allowed in several types of commercial and multi-family residential areas. The change also adds new development standards for shelters, as well as concrete plans for neighborhood relations and security. It emphasizes the need to site shelters as close as possible to social services such as case management, job service programs and grocery stores or close to transportation between the facility and services.

The current shelter sits in a heavy commercial zone. Without the zoning changes, the shelter would be forced to move out of its existing temporary location at the end of March.

Voting in support of the change, District 2 Supervisor Robert Weygandt spoke about the importance of a carefully-managed transfer of services to a different shelter location in greater Auburn for the well-being of shelter guests as well as the community. “As we move forward, to me, the optimum path will be one where we transition from this site to one that is ready to go. We’ve developed some really good partners in the North Auburn area, and I’m not interested in turning back the clock and wasting the investment we’ve made.”

District 4 Supervisor Kirk Uhler also said he wants to see the current shelter move as quickly as possible, adding, “the best way to do that is by keeping the most parcels and the most options on the table as we look toward a future permanent home for a shelter in the greater Auburn area.”

Placer County planning staff recommended adding the approved zoning types because they are generally separated from residential areas by light commercial, storage or retail areas, reflecting concerns expressed by the community about the proximity of a shelter to homes and schools.

Conditions of the changes approved today include assuring neighboring residents and businesses that emergency shelters are operated with adequate staff and that neighbors have an avenue to express concern about operations and safety. A shelter will be required to meet minimum staffing levels to ensure adequately trained staff and management or supervising staff are on site or available. In addition, a required neighborhood relations plan will detail how a shelter operates, including times of intake and discharge, daily operations, how and when outdoor space will be used, and rules of conduct for the clients arriving and leaving the facility.

A security plan will also be a required part of a shelter operation. This will addresses operating the shelter safely for its clients, employees and the surrounding community and would typically include details for outdoor lighting, security cameras and transparent procedures for managing clients and their activities while at the facility.

Leading up to the board’s meeting today, staff made presentations to nine municipal advisory councils, four of which have heavy commercial zoning designations within their boundaries. The item was also heard by the Airport Land Use Commission and the Placer County Planning Commission, and county staff reached out to the cities of Auburn, Rocklin, Roseville and Lincoln.


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Voluntary Evacuation Advised in Olympic Valley Due to Extreme Avalanche Danger

Source: Scott Sandow, County of Placer  |  2017-01-11

With an extreme danger of avalanche this morning, the Placer County Office of Emergency Services has issued an emergency alert encouraging a voluntary evacuation for residents of Olympic Valley.

The advisory is in effect for residents of the north side of the valley, between Squaw Valley Road and Sandy Way. A large avalanche closed Alpine Meadows Road yesterday and damaged more than 10 homes, highlighting the risk.

If residents choose not to evacuate, they are urged to closely monitor conditions and be prepared to evacuate quickly if they deteriorate. For updates on avalanche conditions, visit http://www.sierraavalanchecenter.org/.

Placer County encourages all residents to sign up for the Placer Alert emergency alert system to receive the fastest possible notification of dangers near the places they care about - by text, email or phone. Sign up at www.placer-alert.org.


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