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Elk Grove Police Arrests Suspects Allegedly Using Drugs in Front of Children

Written By EGN on Monday, July 25, 2016 | 16:20

July 25, 2016 |

Two suspects are in custody at the Sacramento County Jail after they were allegedly observed using illegal narcotics in the presence of four children.

Stephanie Dorothy Lopez.
On Saturday night Elk Grove Police responded to the 8200 block of Sheldon Road regarding two adults who were allegedly using narcotics inside a vehicle while four children were playing outside of the vehicle. Officers arrived and contacted 25-year old Stephanie Dorothy Lopez and 28-year old Bobby Lee Lee (pictured above), both of Sacramento, who were inside the described vehicle. 

Four children under the age of 9 were also contacted at the location. A search of the suspects and the vehicle led to the discovery of a controlled substance and narcotics. 

Both suspects were arrested then booked into the county jail where they are being held on narcotics and child endangerment charges. The four children were transported to EGPD then turned over to child protective services. 

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Elk Grove City Council To Consider Raising Taxes, Giving Themselves Pay Raises

July 25, 2016 |

In a meeting that could be a significant issue for this fall's local elections, the Elk Grove City Council will consider raising local sales taxes by up to one-percent as well as giving themselves a substantial pay raise.

The five councilmen will consider whether or not to raise sales taxes by either one-half cent or a full percent. According to the staff report for the matter, the city says it needs the money to plug several self-inflicted financial holes facing the city including an $8 million annual road maintenance deficit.

The road maintenance issue was first revealed to the public by former Elk Grove Public Works Director Richard Shepard almost three years ago. At a December 2013 meeting Shepard told the City Council the City is facing $8 million in deferred maintenance that left unaddressed, would lead to serious structural problems.

At the time the Council consciously decided to continue neglecting road maintenance in the hope of a countywide sales tax increase measure by the Sacramento Transportation Authority (STA) to fund this activity. Although the STA did not pursue the matter in 2014, it will be placing a countywide one-half cent 30-year sales tax increase on this November's ballot that will require a super majority 66-percent approval to pass.  

Although the staff report said the tax increase could be utilized for neglected road maintenance, because it is a general sales tax increase, it could be used for any purpose as determined by the City Council. Also, as proposed, the sales tax increase will only need 50-percent majority for approval. 

In addition to considering a sales tax increase measure, the City Council will also consider asking taxpayers for a substantial pay increase. The idea was presented by Mayor Gary Davis at their July 13 meeting.

Davis, who will be leaving office in December, initially requested examining the possibility of making the Mayor a full-time position. During their discussion on the matter, Councilman Steve Detrick suggested expanding the examination to include city council member.

When he made the request, Davis suggested the pay for a full-time mayor be in line with that of an Elk Grove Police Department Lieutenant or high school principal. According to the staff report prepared by City Attorney Jonathan Hobbs and City Manager Laura Gill, the pay rate for the two positions are up to $145,359 and $139,247 respectively.

In their analysis, Gill and Hobbs pointed to similarly sized California general law cities such as Fremont. With a population greater than Elk Grove, and a directly elected Mayor, Fremont mayoral annual salary is $26,532 and council members $16,884.

Currently, the Mayor and four Council Members are paid $9,600 annually.

During the July 13 meeting, Davis implied the mayoral position would be a full-time job with regular business hours while Detrick was not as specific regarding business hours for council members. The Gill-Hobbs report addressed comparable pay rates and procedures to approve higher wages but did not address business hours or new expectations should the Mayor and Council Members be paid a higher salary.

If the Council decides to pursue the matter, it will have to call a special meeting by August 12 to make the November election. Additionally, the City Council could bypass voters and approve higher pay rates for themselves by ordinance.

Wednesday meeting starts at 6 p.m.

13:45 | 4 comments | Read More

Two People Mugged on Same Elk Grove Street by Suspects With Matching M.O., Descriptions

July 25, 2016 |

Elk Grove Police are investigating two separate assault and robberies committed at the same location Saturday morning as possibly being perpetrated by the same trio of suspects.

The assaults happened Saturday at 6:14 a.m. and 10:24 a.m on the 8200 block of Dandelion Drive near Roy Herburger Elementary School on the city's north side. In both cases the three unknown male suspects approached lone individuals on the street from behind and pushed them to the ground.

In the 6:14 incident, once the victim was on the ground, the suspects surrounded the victim, stole their personal property and fled of foot. Following the same modus operandi in the 10:24 incident, the suspects fled on foot after they were unsuccessful in robbing the victim. 

The suspects in both incidents were described as Black males between 17 and 20 years of age. Both victims sustained minor injuries as a result of the attacks.  

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Eighth Anniversary of Construction Stop on Elk Grove Promenade, Outlet Collection at Elk Grove

July 25, 2016 |

On or about July 25, 2008 construction on the shopping center now known as the Outlet Collection at Elk Grove came to an abrupt halt. 

In a video produced to commemorate the eighth year of inactivity at the mall formerly known as the Elk Grove Promenade and the Lent Ranch Mall, we look at some of our archival video recordings along with some of the numerous local TV news reports on what has become known as Elk Grove's Ghost Mall. 

Not only will you see some rare footage of actual construction activity from over eight years ago, you can watch interviews with three different Elk Grove Mayors, local TV news reports, one of the city's former economic development directors, a recent progress report from the dais, the newest plan hatched for the shopping center, and a hilarious suggestion by an Elk Grove citizen for an alternate use of the forlorn mall.

So take about 18 minutes out of your day and take a stroll through the years as we mark the eight anniversary of, to paraphrase Seinfeld, nothing.    

06:00 | 2 comments | Read More

Video Week 2 - Work Progresses on Elk Grove's Sheldon-Waterman Roundabout

Written By EGN on Sunday, July 24, 2016 | 14:10

July 24, 2016 |

On July 5, 2016, construction commenced on the long-awaited roundabout for the Sheldon and Waterman roads intersection.

Even though the roundabout is in the city's rural area, Sheldon Road has become a major east-west commuter artery for Elk Grove residents who ply the road on their way to jobs in employment centers like the cities of Folsom and Rancho Cordova. While Elk Grove has unsuccessfully attempted to become an employment center, its most recent economic development focus has been to transform the city into an international tourist destination.

The intersection, which has been closed to accommodate construction, is expected to reopen by August 5, 2016. The video below was recorded on Sunday morning, July 24, 2016. 

14:10 | 1 comments | Read More

Sales Tax Hikes Could Give Elk Grove Highest, Most Burdensome Rates in Sacramento County

Written By EGN on Saturday, July 23, 2016 | 11:00

July 23, 2016 | 

On Wednesday night the Elk Grove Grove City Council will discuss the possibility of asking voters for more money by placing either a full one cent or one-half cent sales tax increase on the November ballot.

The staff report on the matter analyzes not only data from several polls gauging voter support of the proposal commissioned by the City since November 2015, it examines the possibility of voter approval in conjunction with the Sacramento Transpiration Authority's (STA) Measure B. That measure seeks a 30-year countywide one-half cent sales increase to fund specified repair and new transportation projects in Sacramento County.

Additionally, the report noted that STA's Measure B will require a super majority 66-percent for approval and that surveys have revealed the chances of approval of a sales taxes for specified uses, which also requires a 66-percent approval, in Elk Grove would be slim. Noting the City's numerous funding problems, the report recommends the sales tax increase be for unspecified uses at the discretion of the Elk Grove City Council and thus would only need a simple majority for approval.

While the surveys measured the City's possible tax increase in association with STA's initiative, it does not appear to have examined what affect the Elk Grove Unified School District bond measure might have. If approved the school district's measure would add $38 in taxes per $100,000 in assessed real property value.  

If the Elk Grove one-half cent sales tax measure is placed on that ballot and wins voters approval, it is expected to generate $9.5 million annually. If passed with the STA measure, Elk Grove taxpayers will be paying a full one percent more in sales taxes on non-food items purchased in city limits.

Another possibility explored in the report would be to seek a one-percent sales tax in Elk Grove. If that increase is placed on the ballot and wins approval along with STA's Measure B, Elk Grove will have the highest sales tax rate in Sacramento County at 9.25-percent compared to three municipalities at 8.75-percent and three at 8.25-percent. (See table below).

Wednesday night's meeting starts at 6 p.m.

Click to enlarge table.

Elk Grove sales tax increase

11:00 | 1 comments | Read More

Chew's Reviews - Star Trek: Beyond

Written By EGN on Friday, July 22, 2016 | 20:00

By Gary Chew | July 22, 2016 |

Now Playing

I remember when Star Trek came to NBC-TV's prime time: the fall of 1968. Wow. I was totally hooked. I love science-fiction, but I'm more the Philip K. Dick kind of sci-fi freak. And Star Trek, this Gene Roddenberry's creation, sort of circled around the loopy/heavier side of sci-fi, but did keep “it's” act together. It was after all ... American commercial network television. We don't want to stir folks up too much.

Three years! Boom! Canceled. I was not feeling very “beamed up.” The series had drifted since the initial season made a good hit for NBC, but maybe not quite the numbers the Peacock honchos really wanted. And there was Star Trek's interracial kissie face that probably startled a few of those larger TV antennae south of the Mason-Dixon Line.

CBS took to Lost in Space, demurring any Trekkie stuff coming out Tiffany TV. Dick disciple that I was and still am, I was Lost In Disinterest. Philip K's overboard material was right in the pocket of a vector most appropriate, Captain.

I've never much watched subsequent Treks that came back to television and on the big screen. I seen some, but could never get even near to warp speed with the product after the first two seasons of this enduring franchise.

Perhaps I'm not the one who ought to write a brief comment on this new Beyond continuance. It's not my place to suggest that you shouldn't bother with this 2-hour, 3-D, IMAX blast. You might miss beingreally entertained. That it does.

The latter day cast is good. Zachary Quinto is Leonard Nimoy, er I mean Mr. Spock. Chris Pine surely must be making today's William Shatner quiver. And the USS Enterprise never looked better in this new release, although there are some scenes that indicate the Enterprise can take a lickin' and still keep tickin', as John Cameron Swayze once barked about Timex watches.

The story hardly surfaces above the awesome, and so totally magnificent computer generated stuff that flies every which way, including yours … when you seen Star Trek: Beyond. The comic relief lines, which come more often than needed, express a quiet lameness that I don't feel good about mentioning.

If I had been younger when the franchise snagged more popularity after the first three seasons, I'd likely be singing this movie's praises. And, to tell you the truth, I don't sing much such kudos for other stringing franchise blockbusters that overpopulate screens big and small with enervating regularity.

But I'd take my offspring to see this movie … in a nanosecond. Then I'd head for another viewing of “2001: A Space Odyssey.” I never get enough of that wonderful stuff. In fact, I recently saw this iconic Kubrick classic, thanks to Turner Classic Movies. Yea, Ted. Thanks for all you did.

The film's closing credits read, “In memory of Leonard Nimoy.” then say, “For Anton.”

Copyright © 2016 by Gary Chew. All rights reserved.

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Daytime Maintenance Work Scheduled For Tomorrow on Hwy 99 in Elk Grove

July 22, 2016 | 

Caltrans announced today that north and southbound Highway 99 in Elk Grove will be reduced to one lane Saturday morning and early afternoon due to maintenance repair work.

Saturday, July 23

  • Crews are scheduled for guardrail repair work on southbound Highway 99 from Elk Grove Boulevard to Grantline Road, 6 a.m. - 9 a.m..
  • Crews are scheduled for guardrail repair work on northbound Highway 99 south of Arno Road to north of Mingo Road, 9:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Motorists are urged to use alternative routes or allow additional travel time for possible delays.
Weather or unexpected events may delay or prolong the closures. 

The department will issue traffic updates on Twitter @CaltransDist3 and on Facebook at CaltransDistrict3. For real-time traffic, click on Caltrans QuickMap at: http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov/.

18:00 | 0 comments | Read More

'Pokémon GO' Players Robbed at Gunpoint in Elk Grove

July 22, 2016 |

Two Pokemon Go players were robbed at gunpoint early Thursday morning near an Elk Grove Park.

The two victims were sitting inside a parked vehicle at Karamanos Park playing Pokémon GO when they were confronted by two unknown men. One of the suspects, who was armed with a gun, brandished the weapon at the victims and demanded their property.

The victims complied with the demands and gave the suspects their personal property. The suspects fled the location on foot in an unknown direction.

The first suspect was described as a Hispanic male adult, 6’0”, 140 lbs., wearing a gray/tan jacket and jeans and the other one was described as a Hispanic male adult 5’10”, 170 lbs., wearing a red shirt and black shorts.

Responding officers were unable to locate the suspects and victims were not injured.

08:40 | 0 comments | Read More

Chew's Reviews - Captain Fantastic

Written By EGN on Thursday, July 21, 2016 | 19:40

By Gary Chew | July 21, 2016 |

Opens Friday

It's not unreasonable to say a quick three-word description for Captain Fantastic could make muster as Little Miss Sunshine. But Captain Fantastic is so much different than that awesomely neat movie of 2006 which was a big favorite of mine; no traveling in an old VW bus this time. Heck no. Now, it's a great big old funky genuine bus with Ben Cash (Viggo Mortensen) as the Daddy driver with all his kids along for the ride.

Ben has six children … three boys and three girls. I think it's three boys, as one of the smallest children usually wears an old gas mask, so it was difficult for me to truly determine that little one's gender.

Living off the grid” with his offspring would be putting it mildly. Ben keep his kids on full time basic training, isolated in the woods of the Pacific Northwest. Ben's intellectual education of his kids is as rigorous as the physical regimen. Furthermore, to say the Cash family is only into organic foods would be an understatement. They slaughter their food ... with knifes. The Cash clan has no guns ... and no soda.

Wife and mother, Leslie (Trin Miller) is seen only in Ben's dreams. She's hospitalized, suffering from mental illness in a New Mexico hospital near her parents, Jack and Abigail (Frank Langella and Anne Dowd). It's early in the film when Ben learns by phone that Leslie has committed suicide.

Then, Captain Fantastic settles ... if you can use that word ... further into the lifestyle of Ben and the kids, as well as issues that ensue when grieving and handling the anger of a parent's self-inflicted demise. That includes the light years cultural distance between Ben and Jack. Frank Langella, by the way, never comes up short in a movie. What I like about Jack's character is that it's written with a steady hand by Matt Ross, who also directed the picture. Jack's perspective could be easily burlesqued into a cheap laugh or two. Ultimately, Jack is seen as dedicated to being a good husband and father as Ben.

On the other hand, there are some positive laughs when Ben celebrates Noam Chomsky's birthday with his kids. It's a good party. The Cash kids can recite quotes of many famous or infamous philosophers … however you might see it … like Karl Marx, etc. The tough and smart Cash children are also sweet, lovely and naïve. You'll love them as much as Ben does.

All young actors here are impressive. As the eldest, George MacKay is particularly fine. It was neat for me, personally, to learn that one of the teenage daughters, Kielyr (a principal character), is played by Samantha Isler who hails from my former place of residence called Tulsa.

Act 3 gets a bit bumpy, and on toward melodrama. There are a couple of questions that remain in my mind about a sudden occurrence that presents in a bus ride scene with Ben weeping at the wheel as he slips away from all he loves … and a seemingly overlooked reaction that logically ought be taken by Jack as Ben departs. Just saying.

But I'm also saying that Captain Fantastic is near being a fantastic family film, if you don't mind an occasional blue word … and a nanosecond of full frontal male nudity … which stuck me as pretty funny.
Copyright © 2016 by Gary Chew. All rights reserved.

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Should I? (or shouldn't I?)

By Michael Monasky | July 21, 2016 |

I'm frightened by the choices we'll have this November for mayor of Elk Grove. Not one of the declared candidates has an actual platform other than habitual obeisance to developer interests that fund their campaigns. I have criticized the council members, the mayor, the city manager, the police chief, the director of finance...let's stop the litany here.

I have not declared my own candidacy for a number of reasons. At first, I just wanted to run against the developers' man in my district; but his seat isn't up for election. So the at-large mayor's seat is available, but requires about 20,000 votes to get into office.

An acquaintance has told me that I'd need $40,000 to seriously run for the office of mayor. I asked him if I should simply take it in 20,000 two-dollar bills for distribution. Obviously, vote-buying is unethical, but somehow not illegal, and I wouldn't do it anyway. I just need 20,000 votes, not $40,000.

Running for public office isn't for the faint of heart. And it isn't cheap. A 200-word statement in the ballot announcement costs $1,150, and could be more should the county registrar of voters decide so after the election.

In my mind, I believe that our community, Elk Grove, should have a vision that the best government is one which involves as many residents as possible; and a mission to engage our residents in participatory democracy.

If I were an alien visiting from another planet, this is what I'd suggest: Stop expansion of the city limits. Live within our means. Abolish our ineffective and costly Economic Development Department. Phase in District Planning Assemblies, focusing on neighborhoods. Pursue council elections by council districts. Ensure adequate police funding and explore diversion of some funding to enhance community mental health and public social services.

There's more: Pay as we go for road maintenance. Make trail building a priority. Explore re-joining Regional Transit, maintaining our commuter routes. Initiate bus rapid transit between us and other cities. Explore free public transit use by all residents. Stop burning green waste; process it into compost. Work cooperatively with regional entities, like the Habitat Conservation Plan. Strengthen the Climate Action Plan. Require health impact assessments in environmental reports.

Still more: Evaluate abandoned and threatened properties as affordable housing for qualified workers. Champion inclusive projects for affordable and workforce housing. Develop strategies to promote mixed-use commercial with residential. Propose a $15/hour minimum wage with full employment. Re-examine pay and benefits of city management personnel, aligned with regional cities. Replace city contractors with civil servants loyal to the people of Elk Grove. Require that the city finance director provide clear and intelligible reports.

Maybe you don't believe in any of this, some of it, or agree whole-heartedly. It remains that our days are numbered unless our leaders stand up and do battle with status quo developers; verily, we are in the Zero Decade for global warming, while this administration has enacted the weakest Climate Action Plan possible; and the opportunity to run for office, which began this week, closes Friday, August 12, 2016.

So, I'm putting it out there. Who will step forward to run against the political machines of Ly, Detrick, and Suen? Who will contribute to pay for the fees to get the candidate's statement on the ballot? Who will help set up a community website to manage a movement to take back our city, create planning assemblies, engage in participatory democracy, and hold regular discussions in our community about what we need, what we want, and what we hold dear, and to effect change upon our city government?

In plain terms, a candidate for mayor or council needs some webhosting, domain name, and website help; contributions to offset the cost of the website ($100), Candidate's Statement ($1,150 for now), and 100 yard signs (under $500.) It requires quick action, a lot of footwork, and as many folks who could walk districts from mid-August, September, to mid-October.

Who is up to the challenge against Ly? And who's running against Detrick and Suen?

Anyone interested can reach me directly at 916-832-5750. I carry my phone with me most of the time...and that time's-a-wastin'...

14:30 | 3 comments | Read More

Cosumnes CSD Strips EGYSA of Authority, Brings Elk Grove Athletic Field Allocation In-House,

July 21, 2016 |

At their regular meeting last night, the Cosumnes Community Services District (CCSD) decided to change the procedure of how athletic fields are allocated to various youth athletic leagues in Elk Grove. By a 4-0 vote the CCSC Board of Directors (Director Gil Albiani was absent) voted to bring the procedure in-house by hiring two additional staff members.

Before this change, which will start implementation this September, the task of how the district's 97 fields were allocated, were performed by the Elk Grove Youth Sports Association. Although the EGYSA has had board members from the various youth athletic leagues, several area leagues complained that preferential treatment was given to the Elk Grove Soccer, particularity in premium field assignments.

CCSD Superintendent of Recreation Patrick Larkin explained during his presentation that when the new procedure is brought in-house, allocations will be determined by several factors including the number of participants each league has and the order of selecting fields for use will be done on a serpentine draft basis. Emphasis will also be to recreational players over competitive players in the process.

To bring the procedure in-house, the District will hire two full-time employees at salaries of approximately $87,000 and $77,000. Along with allocating the fields, the new staff members will be responsible for enforcement compliance and resolving disputes.

During public comment, three members of Elk Grove Soccer spoke in opposition to the new procedure. Elk Grove Soccer President Debra Carlton said the change was unnecessary and expensive.

"Your current proposal will hurt thousands of families that you have served," she said.

Also speaking was William Newsom. A 2nd Vice President with the club, Newsom suggested the fields be allocated based on what group can pay the highest bid price.

"The best offer wins," he said.

Absent from public comments was Elk Grove Soccer's CEO Andrew Donnery. As one of the few full-time professional staff members of Elk Grove-based youth athletic leagues, Donnery made electoral threats during the September 23, 2015 Elk Grove City Council meeting.

Donnery told the City Council member that if the $100-million soccer stadium and field are not built to his satisfaction, they would feel the wrath of voters. (See video below; Donnery's comments start at 1:46 mark).

During their deliberations, Director Rod Brewer said he supports bringing the process back to the district saying it would be more equitable.

"This process, I believe creates a more fair process," Brewer said. "We are going to do it in a very fair way."

CCSD President Michelle Orrock added that the process would likely be modified as it progresses, and asked for patience.

"We know there will be tweaks over the next 18 months to two years," she said. "Please be patient with us."

After the meeting, Kyle Crist President of IR Academy Soccer said he was pleased with the changes.

"I am very happy - control of the community CCSD fields is finally out of the hands of a private group, now to be allocated using a fair and equitable process," Crist said.


11:50 | 0 comments | Read More

A Visit to Elk Way - Will Elk Grove's Next Mayor Actually 'Build Strong Neighborhoods'

Written By EGN on Wednesday, July 20, 2016 | 22:00

By Dan Gougherty | July 20, 2016 |

On my way home from the Cosumnes Community Services District meeting this evening, I decided to take a drive along Elk Way in Central Elk Grove.

I was prompted to explore the older neighborhood after hearing complaints from two residents at last night's meeting held by the City of Elk Grove at the Grange Hall regarding the General Plan update. The complaints came from an elderly mother and daughter who, as the original owner of their house, said they have lived on that street for over 55 years.

The mother and daughter, dressed in matching turquoise blouses with their identical four-wheel walker seat aid attended the meeting to discuss what can be characterized as negligence by the City. Their complaints focused on two items - police response and street lighting, and they were, by their accounts, intertwined.

First, they spoke about vandalism on the recent Fourth of July. They claimed in their neighborhood on the night of the Fourth, 17 cars had windows smashed out by either clubs or M-80 fireworks. 

Furthermore, they claimed that when they called 911, they were told units would not be able to immediately respond. Given the antidotal accounts of vandalism on the evening of the Fourth, dispatchers obviously had to triage calls. 

What was more astounding was the claim they both said they have heard on the night of the Fourth and for several years when making service calls. They claimed to have been told that because their particular area has no street lights, only patrol units with two officers can respond to their neighborhood.   

The claims about the requirement that only two-officer patrol units need verification. However, a visit to the neighborhood at dusk tonight confirmed that along Elk Way for about three-tenths of a mile to just before Lujan Drive, there are no street lights.

When asked if they wanted street lights, the mother-daughter duo said absolutely. They said they were told that they are not allowed to have street lights because the neighborhood is considered a rural area from the time it was built under Sacramento County jurisdiction. Again this needs verification.  

Interestingly, several homeowners received $30 refunds from The City after an observant Elk Grove resident had discovered they were assessed for street lighting that does not exist. 

To the credit of residents along Elk Way and side streets, several homes have installed bright security lights to secure their properties. 

During the recession, this older neighborhood was hit hard by foreclosures. A drive along Elk Way revealed all the homes occupied, but there were some in disrepair. Conversely, there were several houses that looked to have been remodeled in the last few years where pride of ownership was evident.

With Elk Grove preparing to elect a new mayor this November, the candidates may want to consider looking at some of our older, less visible neighborhoods and talk to the residents. They do not have the deep pockets of Christo Bardis or Louis Pappas, but they are the ones elected officials are supposed to be serving. Who knows, maybe installing some street lights they could help strengthen this neighborhood.

Moreover, there is one last observation I would like to relate. While driving slowly on the 8700 block of Elk Way, I heard a dog fight.

One person was walking two dogs, one of which was a pit bull, along a sidewalk. A dog from a house ran toward the pit bull, who immediately clamped their jaw around the other dog. As the owners of the dogs tried to separate them, they were only broken up when another person wisely sprayed them with a garden hose. 

Not to cast aspersions on the neighborhood, but among various populations, pit bulls are a popular security device for homeowners who are trying to protect their property. We doubt if any of the five city council members have pit bulls in their neighborhoods.  

Thankfully it was not a child who was attacked by the pit bull. 

22:00 | 6 comments | Read More

Elk Grove Police Seek Help Locating At-Risk Senior

July 20, 2016 |

UPDATE: Mr. Mannisto has been located and safely returned home. 

From Elk Grove Police |

The Elk Grove Police Department is asking for the community’s help in locating an at risk missing person, 78-year-old John Mannisto (photo above) who is suffering from memory loss.

Mr. Mannisto was last seen driving away from his residence, located in the 8700 block of Halverson Drive, this morning around 11 a.m. in a gold colored 2002 GMC Sonoma license plate number 6W09168. Mr. Mannisto is described as a Caucasian male, 5'8",190 lbs., with brown hair, a gray beard and hazel eyes. He was last seen wearing an aqua colored baseball cap, brown metal framed glasses, a white polo shirt with tan shorts and brown loafers. 

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of John Mannisto is asked to contact the Elk Grove Police Department Dispatch Center at (916) 691-5246.

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Public Information Requests Show Elk Grove Mayor, City Council Not Forthright in The General Plan Update

July 20, 2016 |

Last week many Elk Grove residents received their bi-monthly garbage bill from the City. Inside garbage customer's bills was an informational insert regarding the City's General Plan Update.

The insert provided some basic information about the general plan update and on the cover, asked three questions. Those questions are; How big should Elk Grove be; where should growth happen; and should the City expand?

Along with posing those questions, the garbage bill insert directed customers to more information about how comments can be conveyed regarding their thoughts on how the City should grow. The insert also showed included a map showing possible area of expansion.

Click to enlarge
As it relates to the maps, though, how thorough was the insert in conveying the entire story?

While the garbage insert map shows four areas that The City said could be expansion areas, as we learned in one of the recent joint meetings of the City Council and Planning Commission, in which Mayor Gary Davis was absent, that is not the case. During the joint May 26 meeting it was revealed to the public, for the first time that we can verify, there have been three private applications submitted to the Sacramento Local Agency Formation Commission, LAFCo, the entity that approves expansion plans, for portions that are within the proposed areas, and one that extends beyond the City's proposed area.

One such area is the so-called Bilby SOIA, which is part of Area 3 in the map posted above. The SOI application - sphere of influence - came from an independent, non-governmental entity seeking to expand the city's boundaries by 479-acres.

That application, which was submitted on April 12, 2016, came from Mather, Calif.-based KBLH Investments and is headed by local residential real estate developer heavyweight, Katherine Bardis. Along with her family including father Christo Bardis, they have been generous financial contributors to all of the current and several of past city council members.

As revealed from a public document request, the City of Elk Grove and Mayor Gary Davis in particular, knew of the private application as early as April 4, 2016, and at least a month earlier for city staff. On April 4 Davis received an email from Attorney John Hodgson of the Sacramento-based Hodgson Company, who represents Mather Calif.-based KBLH Investments, requesting a meeting.

In his initial email (see below), Hodgson tells Davis that Katherine Bardis is interested in filing an independent SOI application to initiate the process to annex 475-acres into Elk Grove city limits to build "higher end residences." Hodgson also tells Davis that "we've" met with city staff as well as Peter Brundage and Don Lockhart of the Sacramento LAFCo in March.

The series of emails culminates with a scheduled meeting between Davis and Hodgson on Friday, April 22 at the Corner Bakery on Laguna Boulevard in Elk Grove. By making the land part of Elk Grove before the City does, it will be easier, and more importantly, quicker, for KBLH to initiate construction of residential units.

Below are maps of the Bilby SOI application.

Katherine Bardis Elk Grove SOI Sacramento LAFCo

By comparing the map the city sent to garbage customers to the Bilby application maps, it is clear that a portion of that area is already under consideration for expansion, albeit from a private party and not the City. While the City may not be legally bound to disclose this information in its communications with the public, it likewise is not being forthright to the populace. Not telling the whole story is often correctly equated to lying.

Why did the City Council or Mayor not convey this information much earlier during one of the City Council meetings? Why the need to conceal this information - are they working for real estate developers or the people? 

So while the garbage insert may pose three questions about the city's future, one of those queries - should the City expand? - has already been affirmatively answered by Mayor Davis. Will his successor follow the same path?


14:30 | 1 comments | Read More

Knife Attacker Suspect Arrested, Allegedly Spat at Elk Grove Police Officers

July 20, 2016 |

A woman suspected of assault with a deadly weapon and attempting to spit on police officers is in custody today at the Sacramento County Jail.

Last night Elk Grove Police officers were dispatched to the 9000 block of Campbell Road in response to an altercation. During the altercation, 30-year old Khadijan Spencer (pictured above) allegedly cut her victim on the neck with a knife resulting in a visible injury.  

Responding officers detained  Khadijan and discovered she had an active warrant out for her arrest and is on probation. After Khadijan was arrested, she allegedly resisted officers when they attempted to place her in the back seat of a police vehicle, did not comply with instructions and spat at officers. 

Khadijan was placed in an immobilization restraint system and booked in the county jail. The suspect faces four misdemeanor and two felony charges, is being held on $85,000 bail, and will be arraigned on Thursday, July 28. 

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Unknown Suspects Jump Counter, Steal Pharmaceuticals From Elk Grove Drug Store

July 20, 2016 |

An Elk Grove drugstore was robbed of pharmaceuticals yesterday afternoon.

At noon, two unknown male suspects entered the Walgreens on the 9100 block of Franklin Boulevard and walked into the pharmacy area of the store. The suspects jumped over the counter and confronted employees who were working in the pharmacy. 

The suspects proceeded to grab a variety of pharmaceuticals before fleeing the retailer on foot. The suspects, who were wearing dark clothing and described as Black male adults, exited the store and fled northbound on foot. 

Responding officers were unable to locate the suspects. Surveillance video or pictures have not been released.

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Elk Grove Police Chief Robert Lehner Finalist For Spokane's Top Cop Job

Written By EGN on Tuesday, July 19, 2016 | 22:40

July 19, 2016 |

Elk Grove Police Chief Robert Lehner is one of three finalist being interviewed for the Chief of Police in Spokane, Wash.

According to the KREM in Spokane, Lehner is competing with James Dermody of Seattle, and Dominic Rizzi, Jr. of Yakima, Wash. KREM reports that Lehner and the other two finalist will be in Spokane for interviews tomorrow. 

Lehner and the two other candidates are vying to replace for Frank Straub who was separated from the city. According to KHQ.com, Straub, who is now the Director of Strategic Studies for the Washington D.C.-based Police Foundation and unsuccessfully sued the city was separated for what the city cited as poor leadership and harassment

Previously, Lehner, who joined Elk Grove Police as Chief in 2008, was a finalist for top jobs in Seattle and Corpus Christi, Texas in 2014 and 2015 respectively. The decision of who will be selected is expected to be made in the next few days and confirmed by the Spokane City Council in August.  

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