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Caltrans Schedules Major Night Time Closure on Hwy. 99 in Elk Grove

Written By EGN on Tuesday, August 23, 2016 | 16:25



August 23, 2016 |

Caltrans announced today a major overnight closure of Southbound Highway 99 through Elk Grove.

Nighttime maintenance bridge work is scheduled and will require a complete shutdown of the highway. 

SCHEDULE:
Southbound Highway 99 Complete Closure at Elk Grove Boulevard Thursday, 8/25 from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. 

DETOUR: 
Southbound Highway 99 motorists will be detoured to Westbound Elk Grove Boulevard (Exit 286), then onto Southbound I-5. From there they will need to take Eastbound Twin Cities Road (Exit 498), to get back onto Southbound Highway 99. See map above, click to enlarge. (Oversize Loads are not permitted.) 

Crews will be working at various locations to remove k-rail and install new guard rail. Motorists are urged to choose an alternate route to avoid these delays, and to expect extended travel time. Weather or unexpected events may delay or prolong the work.

Caltrans advises motorists to “Be Work Zone Alert.” The department will issue construction updates on Twitter @CaltransDist3 and on Facebook at CaltransDistrict3. For real-time traffic, click on Caltrans QuickMap at: http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov/







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Child Placed In Protective Custody, Mother Issued Citations Following Elk Grove Panhandling



August 23, 2016 |

A child was placed in protective custody yesterday after police officers identified a possible injury.

Yesterday afternoon Elk Grove Police officers were dispatched to the 8400 block of Elk Grove Boulevard regarding panhandling activities. Officers contacted 31-year old Cara Pula of Rancho Cordova who was with her child. 

Upon contact, officers observed that her one-year old child had an injury on her wrist and that it appeared to be infected. The Cosumnes Community Services District paramedics responded to the scene to examine the child.

Pula refused treatment for her child and provided false information about her identity. Based on the child's injury, the officers placed the child in protective custody. 

The suspect was arrested, issued misdemeanor citations for child endangerment and providing false identity information and was released.    
.  







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Region Business Hosts Over 800 Business, Civic Leaders at Annual BBQ in the Vineyards


August 23, 2016 |

What started eight years ago as a small backyard BBQ meeting of liked-minded business owners has developed into one of the region's largest gatherings of elected officials and business leaders was held last Friday night in Clarksburg.

That meeting, the eight annual BBQ in the Vineyards took place at Clarksburg's Old Sugar Mill and was organized by Region Business. This year's event attracted a record audience of 800-plus Sacramento-area business and civic leaders. 

Region Business, formerly known as Region Builders, holds the function as one of its major fundraising efforts. The business advocacy group has evolved in the last eight years to become a major business advocacy group and was instrumental in keeping the NBA Kings in Sacramento.
Among the 800-plus guest at the event were Rancho Cordova
Vice Mayor Donald Terry, Tony Cincotta, General Manager at
Republic Services, and Sacramento County Supervisor Patrick
Kennedy.

In recent years, the group has, among other things, pursued a permit simplicity program to streamline building projects. Following the City of Elk Grove's 2015 initiation of the program, five cities and counties have followed their lead and have adopted the process.

Among the numerous Elk Grove elected officials on hand were City Councilmen Steve Detrick, Pat Hume, and Darren Suen. Elk Grove Planning Commissioner and Mayoral candidate Kevin Spease also attended the festivities.

Other elected officials enjoying the networking and BBQ included SMUD Director Nancy Bui-Thompson, Sacramento County Board of Supervisors Roberta MacGlasham and Patrick Kennedy, and Rancho Cordova Vice Mayor Donald Terry.

Also attending the event was Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones. As the county's top law enforcement official who is half way through his second four-year term, Jones is challenging incumbent Dr. Ami Bera (D - Elk Grove) for California's Seventh Congressional District in what is expected to be one of the tightest and most expensive races this election cycle in the country.  

"BBQ in the Vineyards is Region Builders signature event to gather over 800 local design and construction industry leaders with elected officials to celebrate the policy successes of our region," Joshua Woods, Executive Director of Region Builders said.   

Photos courtesy Tia Gemmel, all rights reserved, phototia.com/

  





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Elk Grove Police Arrests Suspects in Separate Vehicle Thefts Incidents


August 23, 2016 |

On Sunday morning Elk Grove Police arrested suspects in two separate incidents for vehicle theft.

In the first incident officers responded to I-5 and Laguna Boulevard shortly after midnight after receiving call regarding a reckless driver. The reporting person indicated that the vehicle was stopped in the parking lot of a gas station. 

Officers arrived and located the described vehicle which was occupied by 32-year old Larry Fountain of Sacramento. Officers contacted Fountain and conducted a records check of the vehicle.

The records check revealed that the vehicle had been reported stolen by Stockton Police Department. Fountain was detained and a search of the vehicle led to the discovery of stolen property. Fountain was arrested, booked into the county jail and released on bail. 

In the second incident, also early Sunday morning, patrol officers observed a reported stolen vehicle being driven by 18-year old Keyshawn Strickland of Sacramento near Elk Grove Boulevard and Elk Grove-Florin Road. After stopping Strickland, a records check verified the vehicle was reported stolen out of Chico, Calif. 

Strickland was arrested, booked into the county jail and released yesterday on bail. 





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Elk Grove Police Arrest Suspect Who Allegedly Robbed Juvenile Victim at Gunpoint

Written By EGN on Monday, August 22, 2016 | 12:30


August 22, 2016 |

A Sacramento man is being held at the Sacramento County Jail on a bail of $75,000 after he allegedly stole marijuana at gunpoint from a juvenile victim.

Early Friday evening the 13-year old male juvenile victim was walking near Lewis Stein Road and West Stockton Boulevard when he was approached by 24-year old John Gomez. The suspect pulled out a handgun from his waist band, pointed, and demanded the victim give him a bag of marijuana. 

While the victim complied, an unknown citizen intervened and Gomez fled the area on foot. As Gomez was fleeing the location, the victim saw him throw the weapon into a nearby field. 

Responding officers located Gomez a short distance away and he initially provided false information about his identity. Gomez was positively identified by the victim and he was arrested. 

With the assistance of a K-9 unit, the weapon was located. Gomez is being held on four felony charges and will be arraigned Tuesday afternoon. 




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Emails From Elk Grove's Economic Developer Director Indicate City's Support For Casino



August 22, 2016 |

Elk Grove Mayor Davis sought meeting with Boyd Gaming during official visit to Las Vegas

Although The City of Elk Grove and its City Council members have officially stated they are neutral on the Wilton Rancheria's proposed casino for the city, emails from a member of the City's executive staff indicate otherwise.

In emails obtained from a public records request that were shared with EGN, Elk Grove Economic Development Director Darrell Doan indicated the City is "supportive" of the Wilton Rancheria's proposal for a $400-million casino resort facility. 

In a May 4, 2016 email from Doan (see above, click to enlarge) to Wilton Rancheria Chairman Raymond "Chuckie" Hitchcock, Doan sought Hitchcock's assistance in arranging a meeting with Boyd Gaming. The Las Vegas-based Boyd Gaming has been named as the operator and financier should the casino resort open in Elk Grove.

In his email Doan wrote: "Hi Chuckie. I am going to be in [Las] Vegas for a conference next month. Can you connect me with Boyd? I'd like to take a quick meeting with them on behalf of the city. Make sure they know we are supportive."

As a member of the City's executive staff, Doan reports directly to City Manager Laura Gill who receives her direction from on all major policy issues directly from the Mayor and City Council. 

In a series of emails following Doan's request, Mayor Gary Davis also had email correspondences with Hitchcock regarding meetings he sought with Boyd Gaming while in Las Vegas. While not saying whether or not he was supportive of the casino, it was evident that like Doan, he sought out meetings with Boyd Gaming.

Davis said in a May 20, 2016 email to Hitchcock (see below, click to enlarge) and copied to four Boyd Gaming employees that he will be in Las Vegas and it "would be great if we could set some set aside some time to talk." 

While the City has officially stated on its website to Elk Grove citizens that it is neutral on the proposed casino, Doan's email indicate a desire to help development of the casino on the troubled site of the unfinished Outlet Collection at Elk Grove shopping center. Resurrection construction of that shopping center, where work came to an abrupt halt over eight years ago, has become a source of embarrassment for Elk Grove and is a primary focus of Doan's job duties as well as his predecessor, Randy Starbuck. 

Davis said in an email that he did not meet with Boyd during his trip to Las Vegas. Doan has not responded to an email request seeking comment. 

Additionally, City Council members have been largely silent on the proposed facility. During a July public meeting on the casino conducted by the Wilton Rancheria, Davis said that he supported the tribe, but was not yet ready to support the casino.

Recently Councilman Darren Suen was asked about the proposal at a meeting of the Elk Grove South County Democratic Club meeting. That specific question and Suen's response can be viewed on this video

At the May 25, 2016 Elk Grove City Council meeting Davis discussed his trip to Las Vegas with Doan, but did not mention any meeting with Boyd Gaming for himself or Doan. 









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Opinion - Who Are You Candidates For Mayor and Elk Grove City Council; What Makes You Qualified?

Written By EGN on Sunday, August 21, 2016 | 16:00



August 21, 2016 |

The presidential campaign is in full swing with less than 80 calendar days left before voters go to the polls to cast their ballots and decide who will be the 45th president of the United States and leader of the free world. There are three scheduled presidential debates. The first is on September 26, 2016 in Hempstead, New York at Hofstra University. The last one is on October 19, 2016 at UNLV in Las Vegas, Nevada, less than three weeks before election day.

Elk Grove voters deserve no less than to hear their mayoral and City Council candidates also engage in a healthy political discourse. After all, what do we really know about our candidates and what they stand for? We can’t learn much from someone based on glossy mailers, flyers, Facebook pages, and prepared media statements.

Voters who are undecided or on the fence will find these forums hopefully valuable for providing additional insight into the candidates and their ideas and plans to move the City forward. Cross your fingers the answers to questions will be short on rhetoric and long on substance. Much can be gleaned from a candidate when they are put on the spot and have to think on their feet. We need leaders who can demonstrate good, sound judgement, have good moral character, and have critical thinking skills to solve issues the City faces now and for future generations. 

We need leaders who have a vision for the City and who can articulate that vision, not just regurgitate a jobs and housing plan. Elk Grove desperately needs a leader that can inspire others and bring together divergent perspectives to find common ground and common sense.

John Quincy Adams, one of America’s Founding Fathers, said,If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”

Who are you Kevin Spease, Tracie Stafford, and Garrett Smith? Who are you Steve Ly, Michael Monasky, and Joel Broussard? I don’t know you Jrmar Jefferson. Who are you? For the rest of the council candidates, who are you? What makes you qualified to be a leader of a fast growing city of 160,000 plus residents?

Atticus Finch





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Filings Reveal Elk Grove Vice Mayor Steve Ly's Fondness For Free Golf, Drinks, Meals, Event Tickets

August 21, 2016 |

A recent filing by Elk Grove Vice Mayor and Mayoral candidate Steve Ly reveals his fondness for free rounds of golf, meals, tickets to unspecified events, and in one instance four tickets to a Christmas light display.
Among the several individualized gifts Elk Grove Vice 
Mayor Steve Ly has accepted in the last 12 months has been
four tickets from Global Winter Wonderland. It is not
known who used the tickets to the Christmas-themed 
attraction in Sacramento. 

The information was listed on a California Fair Political Practices Commission Form 700, Statement of economic interests. Although elected officials and certain government employees have to file the report annually, which among other things includes gifts, Ly's mayoral candidacy has triggered another filing.

For most Elk Grove City Council members, the most common items listed historically have included dinners on the annual Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce's annual Cap to Cap lobbying trip to Washington DC and attendance at charitable functions or group dinners where they are attending in an official capacity. 

Two other councilmen whose reelection bids also triggered filings are Steve Detrick and Darren Suen. Detrick filing lists meals received during the Cap to Cap trip while Suen had those same dinners and attendance at charitable or group-type meetings.

Like his colleagues, Ly lists Cap to Cap functions and group type meetings. Beyond those, Ly also lists several other gifts that are more individually focused.

Those individualized gifts include the following: 

Republic Services -
  • 9/28/15, charity golf $179
  • 10/15/15, charity golf, $150
Carpenters of  Northern California -
  • 12/24/15, breakfast, $6
  • 1/16/16, two tickets (unspecified) $100, 
  • 3/7/16, lunch, $20 
  • 5/9/16 - dinner, $23
  • 6/13/16 - lunch, $20
  • 6/14/16 - lunch, $16.75
  • 6/14/16, two tickets (unspecified) $100
  • 6/14/16, room, $99
  • 6/14/16, dinner, $40  
Global Winter Wonderland -
  • 11/14/15 - four tickets, $72
Pappas Investments -
  • 10/5/15 - charity golf, $175
River City Communications -
  • 10/9/15 - two tickets for dinner $189
For the purposes of the the FPPC, acceptance of gifts by elected officials is generally allowed by law.

Along with Ly, the only other Mayoral candidate required to file the statement is Elk Grove Planning Commissioner Kevin Spease. In his filing, Spease listed only his income sources and no gifts accepted in the last 12 months as a Planning Commissioner.  



   






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Spease Earns Endorsement of Elk Grove School Board President in Mayoral Bid

Written By EGN on Friday, August 19, 2016 | 15:00


August 19, 2016 |

Elk Grove Mayoral candidate Kevin Spease announced today he received the endorsement of the President of the Elk Grove Unified School District Board of Trustees. 

“I’m standing with Kevin Spease. He gives to the community, and supports school literacy programs,” Bobbie Singh-Allen, President of the EGUSD Trustees said. “He is the right choice for Elk Grove Mayor.”

Singh-Allen has served on the EGUSD Board of Trustees since her 2012 appointment and was unopposed in her 2014 election to a four year term. Singh-Allen served on the board with Elk Grove Vice Mayor and Mayoral candidate Steve Ly for two years. 

Ly left the EGUSD in 2014 when he was elected to the Elk Grove City Council. Singh-Allen has been elected by her fellow board colleagues twice in the last four years to serve as President of the Board 

“I am honored by the support from Bobbie and so many of our education leaders,” Spease said. “I want to work with them to find new ways the City can help support education and make our schools better and safer.”

Spease, a current Elk Grove Planning Commissioner, is one of seven candidates seeking to become the city's next directly elected mayor. 







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Shoplifting Suspect Attempts to Stab Store Employee, Gets Arrested by Elk Grove Police

Alina Christine Johnson shoplifting suspect

August 19, 2016 |

A Sacramento woman is being held at the Sacramento County Jail on assault with a deadly weapon charge following an alleged shoplifting incident in Elk Grove.

Late yesterday afternoon 35-year old Alina Christine Johnson (pictured above) was observed shoplifting at the Kohls department store on Bruceville Road in Elk Grove. After Johnson had left the store without paying for the merchandise, a loss prevention employee approached her and attempted to detain her.

Johnson allegedly pulled out a folding pocket knife, opened it, and swung it at the employee. Johnson fled and was seen driving away from the store.

The employee provided responding Elk Grove Police officers with a license number and attempted to contact the suspect at the address on the 5100 of Dipper Way. Officers detained Johnson after she was found hiding on the front porch of a residence. 

A records check revealed that Johnson also had an active warrant out for her arrest. Johnson is scheduled for arraignment on Monday and is being held on a bail totaling $80,500 for a 2015 misdemeanor charge of spousal abuse and two felony charges for robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.








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iPhones Stolen at Gunpoint in Late Night Elk Grove Robbery



August 19, 2016 |

A late night meeting of what was thought to be the sale of two iPhones in Elk Grove turned into an armed robbery.

Shortly after 10 p.m. on Wednesday the seller agreed to meet someone near Portofino Drive and Sardinia Court to sell two of the devices. When the suspect arrived, the victim walked to his vehicle and handed over the two iPhones for inspection. 

The suspect handed the phones to a passenger in the vehicle. After receiving the phones, the suspect pulled out a handgun from his waistband and pointed it at the seller, threatened him and drove away in a white vehicle. 

The victim feared for his safety and did not pursue the suspect who was described as a Black male adult, 6’0”, 150 lbs., with dreadlocks and was wearing a hooded sweatshirt. 









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Blade Flashed, Gun Brandished in Elk Grove Weed Deal Gone Bad

Written By EGN on Thursday, August 18, 2016 | 20:45



August 18, 2016 |

An early morning Elk Grove weed deal ended with a handgun brandished, knife wounds and a vehicle chase that finished with a collision into a tree and fire hydrant.

Shortly after midnight on Wednesday morning a party of three were in the process of buying marijuana from two suspects on the 8800 block of Aquarius Avenue in central Elk Grove. During the transaction, one of the suspects described as a Hispanic male adult flashed a knife while the other suspect described as a white male adult brandished a handgun and tried grabbing money from one of the victims. 

During the ensuing altercation between the parties, one of the victims' victim attempted to disarm the knife-wielding suspect which resulted in cuts to his hand. When the victims drove away from the location, the suspects pursued them in their vehicle. 

During the chase, the vehicle that the victim was in struck a fire hydrant and a tree. The suspects fled the location in their vehicle. 

Elk Grove Police officers arrived at the scene and contacted the victims. The victim with the knife wound was taken to a local area hospital for medical treatment, and the suspects were not located. 









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Suspect Arrested on Manslaughter, DUI Charges in Fatal Vehicle Accident in Elk Grove


August 18, 2016 |

A suspect is in custody at the Sacramento County Jail charged with gross vehicular manslaughter and drunk driving for a vehicle accident last month in Elk Grove that resulted in one fatality.

The suspect, 39-year old Nath Rajnel (pictured above), was arrested by the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department after an investigation by Elk Grove Police and booked into the jail on Tuesday afternoon. Rajnel is facing one misdemeanor and three felony charges for the July 8 rush hour accident that led to three injuries and the death of 63-year old Elk Grove resident, Jeffrey Fields.

The accident occurred on Laguna Boulevard at Laugna Crest Drive and involved seven vehicles. At the time of the accident, witnesses said the vehicle being driven by Fields was reportedly rear-ended in stop and go traffic by an SUV being driven at a high rate of speed by Rajnel.

Rajnel is being held on a $450,000 bail and is scheduled for arraignment this afternoon.      




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Jogger Attacked by Unknown Bat-wielding Assailant at Elk Grove Regional Park


August 18, 2016 |

An early morning jogger was able to avoid significant injury after being attacked yesterday morning by a bat-wielding assailant.

The male victim was jogging at the Elk Grove Regional Park yesterday morning when he was approached by an unknown suspect. The suspect struck the victim on the hand with a baseball bat then ran away in an unknown direction. 

The victim sustained a minor injury to the hand that did not require medical treatment. The suspect was described as a Black male juvenile, 6`2", 280 lbs., unkempt afro style hair, unkempt beard, wearing a black t-shirt, blue jeans with a blue back pack. 







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Powerful San Francisco Landlord With Significant Interests in Elk Grove Squeezing Small Business Owners

August 18, 2016 |

Anyone familiar with business knows how tough it is to launch and successfully run a restaurant. The failure rate of restaurants is, by some accounts, 59-percent in the first three years. 

In spite of these long odds, some restaurants break that barrier and manage to stay open and thrive in that hyper-competitive marketplace. One such restaurant is Sacramento's Tokyo Fros.

Started in 1999 by restaurateur and small business owner Jeff Davis, his Tokyo Fros has survived two recessions, including the Great Recession of 2008 that shuttered many restaurants. Additionally, Davis has survived an onslaught of discount sushi restaurants, national chains, the advent of circumspect Yelp reviewers and has not only survived, but has developed a large cadre of regular customers.

Having come out of the Great Recession on both feet, Davis said starting in 2012, business regained steam, and they were having some of their best years since opening, that is until 2014 when they hit a wall of sorts.
The slipshod remodeling being done on the University Village
shopping center in Sacramento give customers the idea that
businesses located there are not open.

“We were having a great year, we were trending in a direction that was unlike I have seen in five, six years,” Davis said.

Was the wall a new nearby sushi bar, or perhaps a well-funded national chain siphoning customers away?

It was neither, but it was something a bit more insidious - a new landlord.

In 2014 Davis' then landlord Howe & University, LLC, sold the University Village shopping center located on the southeast corner of Howe Avenue and Fair Oaks Boulevard to a San Francisco-based real estate concern, Merlone Geier, also known as M&H Realty.

It was not long after Merlone Geier took possession of the shopping center that Davis and other tenants saw the difference in how their new landlords managed the property and tenant relations.

Earlier this year Merlone Geier initiated a $10 million renovation of facility in hopes of attracting national retail clientele. The existing tenants were offered the chance to rip-up their current lease and leave or accept a significantly low buyout offer. Davis, who signed a 10-year lease with his previous landlord in 2012, was similarly offered a bargain basement buyout that was significantly less than the goodwill and value that the restaurant has accumulated in its 17-years at its current location.

Since that time, Davis alleges Merlone Geier has forced out other independent businesses in the University Village Shopping Center. Davis said his current landlords are squeezing out small, locally-owned businesses like his for national chains which can pay substantially higher rents.

“”Why would I leave, I have six-and-a-half years left here, I’ve been here 17- years, and I have a huge following,’” Davis told the Merlone Geier representative.

Once surrounding business were vacated and torn down, University Village has undergone massive reconstruction leaving Tokyo Fros in the center of loud and disruptive construction. Merlone Geier tore down a portion of the former Eastern Empire Chinese Restaurant, who was forced out, and has not resumed construction for several months, which gives customers the impression that the shopping center, most notably Toyko Fros, is either closed for business or not an ideal location to enjoy a meal considering the numerous other restaurant options in the area.

Consequently, Davis says business has significantly decreased hurting his bottom line.

Prolonged demolition and remodeling has not only caused
visual blight for diners at Tokyo Fros, it has affected the day-
to-day operations of the restaurant. 
“Customers do not want to sit and enjoy their lunch or dinner next to the sights and sounds of buildings being torn down and constant construction,” Davis noted. “I was told construction would be ongoing for seven months, I do not know if my business will be able to survive.”

After refusing to accept Merlone Geier’s unreasonably low offer, Davis quickly found himself in the midst of a pattern of escalating tensions with management. Merlone Geier completely removed his outdoor patio and furniture without his consent, erected fencing blocking off his only rear access door where deliveries are made and employees remove trash.

Employees were forced to carry deliveries and unsightly trash through the restaurant in view of customers. Only after repeated demands, management permitted limited access to the rear door by erecting an unsightly makeshift tunnel that still does not allow him to make weekly deliveries. The tunnel serves no purpose and is adjacent to his windows where customers sit and blacks out lighting coming into the restaurant rendering parts of Tokyo Fros’ seating areas unusable.

Since current management took over in 2014, Davis noticed an increase in crime and vehicle break-ins in at University Village due to inadequate security. His repeatedly requests for additional security for his customers and employees leaving the restaurant late at night were largely ignored until earlier this year when Merlone Geier began construction and needed security on the premises to protect their own construction assets that were being left overnight. Davis reports that Merlone Geier’s security has ticketed his vehicle for no reason, harassed him in the parking lot, and followed Davis into his own restaurant before bumping into him with his body.

“It’s intimidation,” he asserted. “They are trying to force me to capitulate and leave through pressure tactics while destroying my goodwill. I do not want to leave. This is my passion. I don’t know what I would do if I were forced to leave.”

Davis added that Merlone Geier already told him that he would not have the option to renew the lease at the end of its current term. “They told me ‘We are not going to renew you, we are going to raise your triple-netDavis said.

Also Merlone Geier is now charging Davis for sewer and water fees which were not part of his last lease. Adding insult to injury, Merlone Geier is charging utility fees for his Tokyo Fros’ patio space that management removed and he is unable to enjoy. And to up the pressure, Davis was recently issued a three day quit notice regarding a water and sewer bill two weeks before its due date. 

“It’s maddening” Davis said. “Instead of having a cooperative business partner interested in helping me succeed, I’m constantly concerned about how to deal with them and their attorneys next threat. This is no way to do business.”

Davis has fought back. Last week Tokyo Fros filed a lawsuit in Sacramento County Superior Court against the San Francisco real estate group alleging they violated his rights under the lease.

“Landlords like Merlone Geier have a responsibility to their tenants as business partners,” Tokyo Fros’ attorney Scott Radcliffe of the Sacramento based law firm Alves Jacobson Radcliffe said. “When they blatantly disregard that responsibility and cause their tenants damage, it should be no surprise that they are faced with a lawsuit.”

Merlone Geier, also known as M & H Realty, is a familiar name to Elk Grove political observers. Aside from being generous financial contributors to Elk Grove City Council Members, as M & H, they pursued litigation, which was settled out of court, against the City of Elk Grove and the Howard Hughes Corporation over development rights near the unfinished Outlet Collection at Elk Grove.

Davis said it is outrageous that Merlone Geier has chosen to use aggressive tactics and economic coercion against him and former fellow tenants, noting many of them were “mom and pop” operations.

“They are putting the squeeze on small business owners in favor of the national chains,” Davis said. “If Elk Grove ever wants to get in on the farm-to-fork and craft brewing movement in a serious way, I hope that city isn’t overrun with landlords like Merlone Geier.” 

     







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Field for Mayoral, Elk Grove City Council Seats Set

Written By EGN on Wednesday, August 17, 2016 | 20:30



August 2016 |

As of this afternoon, the field for three races on the Elk Grove City Council have been qualified, with one exception, by The Sacramento County Voters Registration and Elections Office.

This year, four year terms for District 1 and 3 City Council seats, as well as the two year-term for Mayor will appear on the November ballot.

Mayor's seat - seven candidates

District 1 - two candidates
  • John Phair
  • Darren Suen
District 3 - three candidates

*Not yet verified







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Elk Grove Nail Salon, Patrons Robbed at Gunpoint


August 17, 2016 |

An Elk Grove nail salon and its patrons were robbed by an unknown gunman yesterday. 

Late yesterday morning an unknown male suspect entered The Best Nail Salon on the 9600 block of Elk Grove-Florin Road and confronted two employees and two customers. The suspect, described as a Black male adult in his 20's, brandished a handgun and demanded the victims give up their personal property and money from the cash register.

After the victims complied with the demands, the armed robber fled the location and may have gotten into the passenger seat of a dark colored sedan. The suspect was wearing a black sweatshirt, black pants and black athletic shoes.









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Elk Grove Domestic Violence Victim, Baby Escape After Being Held Captive

Alexander Moreno Elk Grove


August 17, 2016 |

An Elk Grove domestic violence victim and a one year old baby were able to escape after being held against their will yesterday.

The alleged domestic violence incident started on Monday when the victim was allegedly beaten by 22-year old Alexander Anthony Moreno (pictured above). When the victim attempted to leave the apartment, Moreno dragged the victim by the shoulders down a hallway back into the apartment.

While the victim was attempting to escape, Moreno left infant child unattended on a second story balcony. On Tuesday morning, the victim was about to exit the apartment and sought the help of a stranger who contacted Elk Grove Police.

Responding officers arrested Moreno who is being held at the county jail on a $1 million dollar bail and faces felony child endangerment, kidnapping, domestic violence and violation of probation charges. Arraignment is scheduled for Thursday afternoon. 

The victim suffered visible injuries as a result of the beating and was granted an emergency protection order. 












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Elk Grove Police SWAT Team Re-Arrests Suspects on Drug, Firearm Charges

Stratis Elmore

Derayne Isaac Duncan

 | August 17, 2016 |

With the use of their SWAT team officers, Elk Grove Police arrested four suspects yesterday morning, two of whom were arrested last week on suspicion of possessing stolen firearms, on firearm and drug charges. 

Yesterday morning, a follow up investigation to an armed robbery that happened on Tuesday, August 9 was conducted by Elk Grove Police Department officers on the 10100 block of Atkins Drive in the East Franklin neighborhood. During their investigation, officers obtained arrest and search warrants for Elk Grove residents 18-year old Derayne Isaac Duncan (above right), 18-year old Stratis Elmore (above left), and two male juveniles. 

Duncan and Stratis, along with a 17-year old juvenile male, were arrested last week in connection with a suspected armed robbery. After their arrest, both adult suspects were released on bail. 

The SWAT team initiated the warrant service and attempted to make contact with the occupants but they did not initially answer the door even after numerous announcements. After ten minutes, a 17-year old male juvenile suspect and his mother exited the residence, along with Duncan, Elmore, and a 16-year old male suspect. 

A search of the residence led to the discovery of processed marijuana and several handguns that had been disassembled. The disassembled parts had been hidden at different locations inside the residence and a records check revealed that one of the handguns had been reported stolen. 

The two juveniles, neither of which were involved in last weeks suspected armed robbery, were taken into custody and booked into juvenile hall. Duncan and Elmore were booked into the county jail where they face a variety of felony drug, firearm and enhanced charges for secondary offense while on bail. Arraignment is scheduled for Thursday afternoon. 





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Jones Proposes Campaign Finance Reforms in Lead-up to Sentencing of Bera's Father

Written By EGN on Tuesday, August 16, 2016 | 19:00



August 16, 2016 |

With less than two days before the sentencing of Congressman Dr. Ami Bera's father for Federal campaign finance violations, rival candidate Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones has proposed campaign finance reforms that squarely put the elder Bera's crimes into focus.

Jones, the Republican candidate challenging Democratic Bera for California's Seventh Congressional seat, has made the May 2016 guilty plea of Babulal Bera, father of the Congressman, one of his main attack points on the second-term incumbent. The elder Bera plead guilty to Federal charges that he reimbursed donors who made contributions to his son's campaign thereby bypassing individual contribution limits.

In his proposal Jones has suggested three reforms - Implement FEC reporting to disclose family members of federal candidates and elected officials; more frequent reporting of contributions; and impose proactive steps to prevent "straw donors.” 

“More has to be done to root corruption out of politics and expose conflicts," Jones said. "As Congressman - just as I’ve done as Sheriff - I will be proactive in ensuring transparency and accountability in government. That’s why I'm proposing three simple rules that will help increase transparency in our election process."

The Bera campaign did not respond to an email request seeking comment on Jones' campaign finance reform proposals. 

Should Jones' be elected, the chances of getting legislation passed, much less introduced are minuscule given the reluctance of either party to tackle campaign finance reform. Nonetheless, they are a tool Jones can bludgeon his opponent with while not directly attacking the elder Bera.

Sentencing for the Bera is scheduled for this Thursday in Federal Court in Sacramento. While prosecutors are seeking a 30-month incarceration of Bera, a pre-sentencing court report recommended Bera, who at 83 years of age suffers from several ailments, be given probation.

"Campaign finance rules are stricter than ever, but most of the rules are based on reporting processes that are out of date," Jones said.

     











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Three Suspects With Outstanding Arrests Warrants Apprehended by Elk Grove Police

Brenda Sai Thao

August 16, 2016 |

Elk Grove Police arrested three adult suspects yesterday for outstanding warrants.

The three arrested were 35-year old Andres Roman Campos of Rancho Cordova, 24-year old Brenda Sai Thao (pictured above) of Sacramento, and 53-year old Glen Williams of Sacramento.

Campos is being held and is ineligible for bail on misdemeanor drug charges. Thao is being held on a three felony vehicle theft charges and is not eligible for bail. The third suspect, Glen Williams, was released from custody yesterday.

Additionally, police took a 12-year old male into custody on suspicion for making threats that would cause bodily injury. 





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'Protect Elk Grove' Holds Meeting, Seeks Grassroots Opposition Against Proposed Elk Grove Casino

August 16, 2016 |

UPDATED 4 p.m.

The anti-casino group known as Protect Elk Grove held a meeting last week in hopes of organizing grassroots opposition to the proposed casino in Elk Grove.

The group, which operates a website under the same name, made its presence known shortly after the recent announcement by the Wilton Rancheria of their intentions to develop a $400-million casino-resort on a portion of the parcel currently occupied by the unfinished Outlet Collection at Elk Grove. In addition to the website, the group also sent out a full-color glossy mailer urging Elk Grove residents to voice the opposition to the project at a recent Elk Grove City Council meeting.

The meeting, which was held last Thursday night at the Round Table Pizza on Elk Grove Boulevard in Elk Grove, was intended to help organize local activities to oppose the proposed casino. Among the suggested activities were letters to elected officials and the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs, gathering signatures for advisory petitions, and request meetings with representatives.

Conducting the lightly attended meeting was Joe Teixeira, who said he was opposed to the casino for a variety of societal and economic reasons.

"We are opposed for the reasons you can expect," Teixeira said. “It is quality of life issues."

When asked who was funding Protect Elk Grove, Teixeira said he did not know. Teixeira added that he believed the backers had Democratic Party leanings and said he was contacted by Orange County, Calif.-based public relations specialist George Urch.

Reached by phone, Urch said Teixeira was in charge of local efforts to oppose the casino. Urch declined to identify who was financially backing the opposition group.

"It's people in the [Sacramento] business community," Urch said.

Among those attending the Thursday meeting were Joshua Woods of the advocacy group Region Business and Raymond Hitchcock, Chairman of the Wilton Rancheria. Region Business has come out in support of the proposed project noting that the casino would create about 2,000 jobs while Hitchcock said he attended the meeting to provide further information about the proposed resort.

"The most trans-formative economic growth project in the region is being opposed by a secretly funded Southern California consultant armed with misinformation," Woods said. "His efforts to organize local opposition to the Casino and Resort project failed as they had more pizzas than people at their meeting...since they only had three people."

“I’ve been spending a lot of time reaching out to the community and wanted to show up to answer questions, educate them on misconceptions, explain the project and, hopefully, convince them to see the benefits we’re going to bring to Elk Grove,” Hitchcock said.

Coincidental to the establishment of the anti-casino group Protect Elk Grove, a Twitter account (registration required) using the same name was recently created on that social media platform. That account, which has come out in opposition to Elk Grove City Councilman Steve Detrick's reelection bid has also taken aim at the casino through Detrick.

Below is a tweet posted last week regarding the proposed casino and suggesting Detrick supports the project. Public relations specialist Urch said he was not aware of any affiliation between the website-movement Protect Elk Grove and the Twitter account of the same name. 











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