Citrus Heights, CA (MPG) – Indicative, perhaps, of the early fruits of redevelopment momentum already in play along the Auburn Road corridor, is the pending arrival of a new quick-service restaurant, Checkers, slated to possibly occupy the vacant side of the corner lot at Grand Oaks Boulevard.
Roseville resident Ben Aibuedefe said he doesn’t have a construction start date yet but, barring any unforeseen setbacks, will bring the first Checkers burger restaurant to Citrus Heights, marking the first foray into the Sacramento region for the Florida-based Checkers and Ralley’s burger chain, which currently has roughly 800 locations nationwide.
“I believe the closest Checkers is in Fresno,” said Aibuedefe, a Nigerian native who came to the country roughly 14 years ago and, for much of the last 12 years owned and operated a Union 76 gas station franchise in the Bay Area.
Aibuedefe said all told, he will have invested roughly $1.4 million in the first of what he hopes to expand to a multi-location ownership of Checker’s stores across Sacramento County.
“I have had the idea in my head to get into a quick service franchise for a long time,” Aibuedefe said. “I envision this being my first store and then expanding out from there, but staying in the Sacramento area.”
Aibuedefe said the restaurant will be roughly 1,000 square feet in size and, in keeping with the Checkers and Ralley’s model, will offer double drive-thru and walk-up service for burgers fries and shakes, with limited outside seating.
Aibuedefe said he has initiated the assessment phase of the project with the city’s engineers to ascertain what, if any improvements to the lot space must be made before permits for construction can be obtained. Once those requirements are met, however, the build out won’t take long, as the restaurant will be erected using the company’s modular construction format, involving prefabbed “cubes” ready to drop in, a process Aibuedefe says can save roughly $100,000 in construction fees and have the eatery up-and-running in as little as 4-6 weeks.
“It’s a very fast process, once you have the modules delivered,” he said.
Aibuedefe conducted a vast search across Sacramento County for a location before settling on Citrus Heights. The location is well-suited, he says, for a burger chain, as it would share the large, corner lot with Fireside Lanes bowling alley. But the other draw, he said, was the ongoing redevelopment and expected revitalization of the retail sector along the Auburn Boulevard corridor.
“Citrus Heights has been involved in a lot of redevelopment plans in the area, and that is very important for me,” said Aibuedefe. “Also, with the bowling alley nearby, this is an excellent location. There is plenty of visibility and I see my restaurant as being part of the revitalization of the area and giving locals more options.”
Aibuedefe said he’d been hoping to buy into a quick-service food franchise for several years, and certainly considered others, including some of the bigger players, such as Panera. But lower startup and construction costs, coupled with attractive franchise fees, and the company’s rating as one of the top 50 franchises in the nation, he said, cinched the deal for him.
“I looked at all the bigger franchises out there and they wanted between $45,000 and $75,000 in franchise fees, but this one, the fees are closer to $30,000,” Aibuedefe said. “Also, they take smaller sales percentage of sales, something between 2.5 and 4 percent, compared to others who ask for between 3 and 7 percent.”
Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, Inc. was formed in 1999 with the merger between Rally’s Hamburgers, Inc., out of Louisville, Kentucky, and Checkers out of Mobile, Alabama. The chain offers a 1950s, pit-stop feel, complete with checkered flag facades, red and chrome accents, and double-drive-thru access.
Never mind the aesthetics, says Aibuedefe. The menu, which includes burgers, fries, frozen drinks, shakes, wings and even fish sandwiches, and prices are hard to beat.
“From the minute I walked into meet the company representatives, I knew this was the right franchise for me,” says Aibuedefe. “But, in addition to that, this food is really good and so are the prices. I think locals are going to be very happy with us.”
Photo credit: Jacqueline Fox
Renderings: Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, Inc.
Sacramento County, CA (MPG) - With the approval of the recommended budget for Fiscal Year 2017-18 on June 14, the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors highlighted the County’s commitment to addressing homeless initiatives with an additional $6.2 million directed toward those efforts.
The enhanced funding comes on top of the already more than $40 million Sacramento County spends annually on homeless services.
“While the County addressed a number of service and program issues with enhanced funding for Fiscal Year 2017-18, our biggest additional investment overall was directed towards efforts to reduce homelessness,” said Board Chairman Don Nottoli, Supervisor, District 5.
As the major funder of homeless services—including shelters and transitional housing, re-housing assistance—as well as the largest provider of social services, Sacramento County has committed to working in partnership with government partners and community stakeholders to continue to develop and deliver the most impactful solutions to homelessness.
Following several public workshops in 2016 and 2017, the Board of Supervisors endorsed the following initiatives for FY 2017-18:
County Initiative #1: Improve Family Crisis Response and Shelters
County Initiative #2: Preserve Mather Community Campus
County Initiative #3: Full Service Re-housing Shelter
County Initiative 4: Flexible Supportive Re-Housing program
Public Housing Authority Resources
In addition to these initiatives, the Board of Supervisors (acting as the Housing Authority of the County of Sacramento) directed SHRA to initiate the process to increase Public Housing resources for homelessness, including:
Sacramento County’s Director of Homelessness Initiatives Cindy Cavanaugh said, “Over the past year, the County has worked with our partners and stakeholders to build on what’s working and to create new solutions and pathways out of homelessness. This year, the Board of Supervisors made a significant investment to not only improve existing programs but to create new County programs that provide concrete support to families and individuals in their transition to permanent homes, employment, and restored lives.
For more information, visit the County’s Homeless Initiatives webpage.
Source: Sacramento County Media
Aerojet Goes Three for Three in Testing for NASA’s Space Launch System
Stennis Space Center, MS (MPG) - Aerojet Rocketdyne, a subsidiary of Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AJRD), successfully tested its third RS-25 engine flight controller today at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The RS-25 engine will propel America’s next-generation heavy lift rocket, the Space Launch System (SLS), into space. The flight controller tested today is slated to fly on the inaugural mission of the SLS which will propel the Orion capsule around the Moon and safely return it back to Earth.
“The Space Launch System is the rocket that will take humans beyond the Moon, and ultimately to Mars,” said Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and President Eileen Drake. “Evaluating the engine’s flight controller under multiple conditions is one way we are ensuring that we are providing a safe, reliable engine to the nation for its deep space exploration efforts.”
The flight controller translates the vehicle’s commands into action while monitoring the health of the engine by making real-time adjustments to the speed of the turbopumps, combustion pressures, as well as the engine’s thrust and propellant mixture ratios. Today’s test focused on the engine thrust and mixture ratio precision operation.
“Achieving the optimum thrust and mixture ratio is crucial for creating an extremely efficient rocket engine,” added Dan Adamski, RS-25 program director at Aerojet Rocketdyne. “The RS-25 is the most efficient booster engine in the world, which is why it is the right engine for human exploration of deep space.”
Four RS-25 engines power the core stage of the SLS for 8½ minutes to help the SLS during its climb to space; combined, the engines provide the rocket with more than two million pounds of thrust. The SLS rocket provides an unmatched capability to launch the heaviest and largest payloads faster to any destination when compared with other existing or proposed launch vehicles in development, making it the ideal rocket to explore deep space.
Aerojet Rocketdyne is an innovative company delivering solutions that create value for its customers in the aerospace and defense markets. The company is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader that provides propulsion and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, tactical systems and armaments areas, in support of domestic and international markets. Additional information about Aerojet Rocketdyne can be obtained by visiting our websites at www.Rocket.com and www.AerojetRocketdyne.com.
Source Aerojet release from July 25, 2017
Sacramento County Farm Bureau Organization Honored for Service to Local Communities
Sacramento Region, CA (MPG) - The Sacramento County Farm Bureau is celebrating 100-years of service to local communities after receiving special recognition at the 2017 California Agricultural Heritage Club Ceremony held at the California State Fairgrounds in Sacramento. Membership in the Agricultural Heritage Club is a prestigious award, which is only given to farms, ranches, organizations and agribusinesses that have maintained a fiscal responsibility in the state for at least one full century. The California State Fair is the sanctioned body that holds these records and facilitates the recognition process.
"Only a handful of county farm bureaus have been honored with this kind of designation and Sacramento County is now a part of that exclusive club," said Sacramento County Farm Bureau Executive Director Bill Bird. "It's a special recognition of what several generations of farming families have built in Sacramento County. Farm Bureau members do more than just grow the food that all families rely upon, they also work to educate others about the important work that the agricultural community does.
The award was accepted by three lifetime Sacramento County Farm Bureau members, who also operate ranches and farms in the local community. They include Ken Oneto, who grows cherries, walnuts, grapes, tomatoes and wheat on KLM Ranches in Elk Grove, Tim Neuharth, who grows certified organic pears and cherries on Steamboat Acres in the Delta and Jim Vietheer, who raises angus seed stock and cattle on the Have Angus Ranch in Wilton.
The Sacramento County Farm Bureau works to protect and promote agricultural interests throughout Sacramento County and to find solutions to the problems of the farm, the farm home, and the rural community. The membership-driven organization strives to protect and improve the ability of farmers and ranchers engaged in production agriculture to provide a reliable supply of food and fiber through responsible stewardship of California's resources.
Sacramento County is the 25th largest agriculture producing county in California with total agricultural production approaching $500 million. The top five county crops include wine grapes, poultry, grain corn, milk and Bartlett pears.
Sacramento County farmers put food on your fork. Our agricultural operations and products are as diverse as the lands we carefully manage. We are proud to provide healthy, fresh food for your family and ours. We invite you to join our efforts to protect Sacramento County's agriculture, rural character, and our ability to produce local, high-quality food for your table.
Sacramento, CA (MPG) - The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced July 20th, 2017, a large increase in the number of reported Valley Fever cases in California with illness onset in 2016.
From January through December 2016, 5,372 new cases of Valley Fever were reported to CDPH corresponding to an incidence rate of 13.7 cases per 100,000 people. This is very similar to the most recent peak in 2011 (5,213 cases), which was the highest number of cases since individual cases were made reportable in 1995.
“People who live in or travel to areas where Valley Fever is common should take steps to avoid breathing in dusty air,” said CDPH Director and State Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith. “If they develop flu-like symptoms, such as cough, fever, or difficulty breathing, lasting two weeks or more, they should ask their doctor about Valley Fever.”
Many counties in the Central Valley and Central Coast regions, where Valley Fever is most common, reported an increase in cases in 2016 compared with 2015. The largest number of cases and highest incidence rate in 2016 were in Kern County where more than 2,200 cases, or more than 250 cases per 100,000 people, were reported.
Valley Fever, also known as coccidioidomycosis, or cocci, is caused by the spore of a fungus that grows in certain types of soil. In California, Valley Fever is most commonly reported in the Southern Central Valley and Central Coast. People get infected by breathing in spores present in dust that gets into the air when it is windy or when soil is disturbed, such as through digging in dirt during construction. The incidence of Valley Fever depends on a variety of environmental factors and types of human activity in areas where the fungus is present. Valley Fever symptoms can be similar to other illnesses and it is not always recognized: changes in testing, diagnosis and reporting patterns can also impact reported disease levels. It is unknown why there has been such a large increase in reported Valley Fever cases in California in 2016.
While anyone can get Valley Fever, those most at-risk for severe disease include people 60 years or older, African-Americans, Filipinos, pregnant women, and people with diabetes or conditions that weaken their immune system. People who live, work, or travel in Valley Fever areas are also at a higher risk of getting infected, especially if they work outdoors or participate in activities where soil is disturbed.
A person can reduce the risk of illness by avoiding breathing in dirt or dust in areas where Valley Fever is common. In these areas, when it is windy outside and the air is dusty, stay inside and keep windows and doors closed. While driving, keep car windows closed and use recirculating air conditioning, if available. If you must be outdoors, consider wearing a properly fitted mask (such as an N95 respirator mask which is widely available in retail stores), and refrain from disturbing the soil whenever possible. Employers should train their workers about Valley Fever symptoms and take steps to limit workers’ exposure to dust.
Most infected people will not show signs of illness. Those who do become ill with Valley Fever may have flu-like symptoms that can last for two weeks or more. While most people recover fully, some may develop more severe complications of Valley Fever which may include pneumonia, or infection of the brain, joints, bone, skin or other organs. If you think you have Valley Fever, you should contact your physician.
For additional information on Valley Fever, please visit the CDPH website.
Sacramento, CA (MPG) - A July 13 preliminary hearing for the man accused of causing the death of CHP Officer Lucas Chellew February 22 in South Sacramento, has been rescheduled in order to give CHP investigators more time to complete their investigation of the accident.
Defense attorney Alice Michele requested an extension for the hearing for her client, Alberto Quiroz, 26 at the time of arrest, who faces one misdemeanor and three felony counts of vehicle theft, possession of a stolen vehicle and resisting arrest.
Motorcycle patrolman Chellew was pursuing Quiroz, also on a motorcycle, on Fruitridge Road, when he was suddenly cut off by a passing car, lost control of his motorcycle and hit a pole. He was taken to UC Davis Medical Center where he later died from his injuries. Quiroz was arrested shortly after the pursuit.
Deputy District Attorney Aaron Miller confirmed that the hearing, which was stalled for several months for settlement conferences before being calendared, was delayed so that CHP officials conducting a detailed investigation into the crash that killed Chellew could have more time to prepare.
“They need more time to put together their report before we can move forward,” Miller said, adding that the original charges have not changed in the case against Quiroz, but declining to say that they could.
The CHP report is expected to play a critical role in the case against Quiroz. Should it reveal willful recklessness on the defendant’s part, charges against him could change to include at least one count of vehicular manslaughter.
Chellew’s widow was present in the courtroom for the hearing. She sat flanked by CHP patrolmen, presumably colleagues of her late husband, as Judge Kevin J. McCormick asked Quiroz, clad in an orange jumpsuit inside a detaining cell, if he agreed to waive his right to have his case heard sooner. He did.
West Sacramento, CA (MPG) - Better Business Bureau (BBB) Board Chair Archie Milligan announced on July 19th, that Lynn Conner accepted the position of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of BBB serving Northeast California. Conner also served as the interim CEO after former CEO, Gary Almond, chose to step down in late March.
“We are very fortunate to have someone with Lynn’s impressive resume leading the BBB. Even more important for us, though, is Lynn’s character and her commitment to our mission and values, demonstrated during her many years of service on our Board,” said Milligan. “I personally appreciate the most recent example of Lynn’s commitment – her positive response to my request to serve as our interim CEO, and I certainly appreciate the extraordinary efforts of the staff to convince her to take on the position permanently,” he added.
“I’m honored and excited to be taking on the challenge as CEO of BBB serving Northeast California. Marketplace trust is as vital as ever, and I look forward to continuing to develop and promote programs that advocate trust and bring attention to those who have chosen to become BBB Accredited Businesses,” said Conner.
Conner served on the BBB Board of Directors for six years, and was the chair of that board in 2015 and 2016, helping guide the organization during a period of significant financial growth. For the last two years she was also given the distinct honor of serving on the national board of the Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB), and is currently a member of the Finance Committee.
Conner brings thirty-five years of managerial and business related experience to this endeavor. Her background is both varied and extensive. She worked for Parasec, a $15 million public records research company, for 30 years, 22 years as President until she was succeeded by Matt Marzucco in 2009.
In addition, while working with Parasec, Lynn assisted a partner CPA firm for nine years, Flemmer Associates, as their Business Development Manager.
In 2010, Conner and her husband started their own company, Hialeah Terrace, a six-bed residential care facility for the elderly. She is the Licensee and Administrator for that company.
Having served for more than 12 years on the board of the Sacramento Employment and Training Agency (SETA), Lynn’s skills led to her election as Chair of the Board. In that role she continues to demonstrate her commitment to SETA’s mission to develop a viable, vibrant workforce in Sacramento and the surrounding areas.
Lynn holds her Certification as a Residential Care Facility Administrator.
Lynn earned a Bachelor of Science in Botany from UC Davis, as well as a Master’s of Business Administration from California State University, Sacramento.
Source: BBB Media
District Attorney's Office Updates Public on Arrests
Sacramento, CA (MPG) - “On June 26, 2016, members of the Traditional Worker’s Party (TWP) held a rally on the west steps of the state capitol after securing legal permits from the California Highway Patrol. The rally began at 11:00 A.M. Numerous counter-protesters also arrived at the capitol to block the rally, none of whom were lawfully permitted to conduct their demonstration. In the hours that followed, violent clashes occurred between the two groups resulting in a number of assaults and several stabbings.
The California Highway Patrol Protective Services Division investigated the incident. After several months of reviewing video footage, interviewing witnesses, and attempting to identify participants, the investigators submitted arrest warrant requests to the District Attorney for review. In all, arrest warrants for 101 individuals were submitted for consideration. Many of the charges submitted did not meet the District Attorney’s filing guidelines including: 85 counts of Unlawful Assembly, 55 counts of Conspiracy to Unlawfully Assemble and 32 counts related to the possession of illegal signs and banners. In several other cases, there was clear evidence of felonious conduct but the identity of the perpetrators could not be established. Unfortunately, included in this category were all of the stabbings and the attack on a local television reporter. After reviewing all of the evidence submitted, the District Attorney’s Office sought and received arrest warrants for individuals whose conduct represented the most egregious offenses that can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
We cannot disclose the names of all of the individuals for whom warrants have been issued until after arrests have been made. We can confirm at this time that William Planer and Porfirio Paz have been arrested on charges of Assault with a Deadly Weapon or by Means of force Likely to Inflict Great Bodily Injury and Participating in a Riot. Planer was arrested in Colorado and is pending extradition to California. Paz was arrested in Southern California and is scheduled to be arraigned on July 24, 2017 in Department 63 at 8:30 AM.” - Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Grippi
District Attorney's UPDATE (July 19, 2017):
Yvonne Felarca was arrested last night in Southern California on charges of Assault by Means of Force Likely to Inflict Great Bodily Injury, Participating in a Riot, and inciting a riot. We have no further information as to Felarca’s court date at this time.
Michael Williams was arrested today in Yolo County on charges of Assault with a Deadly Weapon and Participating in a Riot. Williams is set for arraignment on July 21, 2017 at 1:30 in Department 63 of the Sacramento Superior Court.
There are no further outstanding warrants related to this incident.
Sacramento, CA (MPG) - Chairman Ken Cooley (D-Rancho Cordova) of the Joint Committee on Rules convened the second of several hearings to examine the condition of the State Capitol Building Annex and the Legislature's options for dealing with California’s aging seat of government on July17th, 2017.
“The functionality of our State Capitol Annex is key to our ability to govern,” said Chairman Cooley. “Today’s hearing made clear that the current status of our building does not match our basic needs as a co-equal branch of government. Our partners in the Executive branch stand ready to help move us forward to build a ‘People’s House’ we can all be proud of for the next century.”
Testimony at the committee began with strong statements of commitment from Marybel Batjer, Secretary, Government Operations Agency and Daniel C. Kim, Director, Department of General Services (DGS) for the Legislature’s endeavor. Jason Kenney, Chief, Project Management and Development Branch, DGS then gave a presentation regarding the current conditions and status of the building and what next steps can be taken.
Mr. Kenney remarked on the fact that the Capitol’s East Annex was finished in 1952 and was designed for a part-time Legislature and before modern technology. Today, the Annex’s wear and tear has significantly increased beyond its original intended usage. There have not been any significant renovations to the major systems in need of repair. Many “band-aids” have been used, but most upgrades cannot be done while the building is occupied. According to Mr. Kenney, this project offers the Legislature an incredible opportunity to make significant upgrades to security, technology, and the free movement of people. He also spoke about the planning process to identify space for lawmakers and staff during construction and potential Capitol Park impacts.
Diane Boyer-Vine, Legislative Counsel, next spoke on the law and legal precedent for Capitol projects. She remarked that the Legislature is the law-making branch and that this is reflected in the law governing the Capitol, with the exception of the first floor that houses the Governor and Lieutenant Governor and is overseen by DGS. She also described the funding that was set up by SB 836 of 2016, which also outlines legislative control over the building and its zoning.
One of Chairman Cooley’s primary considerations has been to engage security partners from the beginning so that safety components are integrated into the initial design as opposed to attempting to fit these needs as an afterthought into an already re-constructed building. To conclude the Joint Rules hearing, a presentation on public building design considerations by Senate Chief Sergeant-at-Arms Debbie Manning, Assembly Chief Sergeant-at-Arms Bryon Gustafson, and California Highway Patrol Chief Chris Main reinforced the need to make security discussions a priority. Many security considerations in the Capitol have been a reaction to incidents at the Capitol or elsewhere and are outside of the basic architectural design. A more in-depth look at the particular security needs will be delivered to the Joint Committee on Rules during a closed meeting on August 22, 2017.
The Assembly maintains a website for the Architectural Program for California’s Capitol at http://annex.assembly.ca.gov/. The full video of the hearing is posted on the website.
Source: Office of Ken Cooley
Shared with Sacramento Republic FC Player Adam Moffat
Sacramento, CA (MPG) - It’s All Aboard for Story Time! with Sacramento Republic FC midfielder Adam Moffat as a celebrity guest reader on Monday, July 31, 2017, at 11 a.m. at the California State Railroad Museum. To the delight of young children and soccer fans alike, Moffat will read the children’s book Thomas and the Big, Big Bridge (Thomas & Friends). Originally from Scotland, Moffat joined Sacramento Republic FC this season bringing with him MLS experience to the wildly popular local professional soccer team.
All Aboard for Story Time! is offered every Monday morning year-round. Through this interactive and fun program, parents are encouraged to let trains and railroading introduce and foster the love of reading with their imaginative young children ages two to five. The Story Time! program showcases different railroad-related books each month. Afterward, children and parents are encouraged to explore the Museum. Whether it’s toy trains or big locomotives, there is always something to discover in the California State Railroad Museum – North America’s most popular railroad museum – that will thrill children (and adults) of all ages.
The All Aboard for Story Time! program is included with Museum admission: $12 for adults; $6 for youths ages 6-17; free for children ages 5 and under. For more information about the reading program or the California State Railroad Museum in general, please call 916-323-9280 or visit https://www.californiarailroad.museum/.
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California State Parks Mission is to provide for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources, and creating opportunities for high quality outdoor recreation.
Source: T-Rock Communications