New Sister City for Elk Grove? Please, Proceed Cautiously

July 27, 2015 | At last Wednesday night's regular meeting, Elk Grove City Councilmen Steve Detrick and Steve Ly spoke of a recen...

July 27, 2015 |

At last Wednesday night's regular meeting, Elk Grove City Councilmen Steve Detrick and Steve Ly spoke of a recent meeting with Pakistan's new Los Angeles-based Consular General, Hamid Asghar Khan.

The meeting took place at Elk Grove City Hall on July 10 and included the councilmen, city staff members, the Consulate General of Pakistan, and members of the Pakistani American Sports & Cultural Organization.

Aside from exchanging pleasantries, the only thing of substance from the meeting was reported by Detrick at Wednesday night's meeting. Detrick mentioned that he introduced members of the Pakistani community to Major Ty Sorci, the point-person on city's Sister City Committee (SCC).

Areas in the red are consider Taliban controlled
regions in Pakistan.
Sorci's name may be familiar to readers as one of the individuals enmeshed in the February, 2014 controversy in Elk Grove's last attempt to form a sister city relationship. In that case, the city approved a $14,000 taxpayer-funded expenditure to host the Emir of Katsina, Nigeria.

After approving the expenditure, the city quickly withdrew from the agreement following public outcry.   

While no specific city in Pakistan was mentioned as a possible sister city, undoubtedly our city leaders will proceed with caution. To avoid what happened with the Katsina debacle, the city formalized the process.   

Nonetheless, Elk Grove needs to proceed cautiously on several fronts. 

If the city pursues a sister city relationship, let's hope they thoroughly vet whoever they select. Many regions within Pakistan are controlled by the Taliban, and in other areas women and other groups are targets of persecution.

Undoubtedly there are cities in Pakistan worthy of establishing a sister city relationship with. Nonetheless, the city council and Sorci need to do their homework.

One final note and that involves the Consular General Khan. An EGN reader pointed out that a few days before his meeting with Detrick and Ly, reports surfaced alleging Khan of a host of transgressions as Consular General.

While every person in our judicial system is presumed innocent, as with a possible new sister city relationship in Pakistan, we hope the city proceeds cautiously with Khan.  


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Anonymous said...

The city is 26% Asian.

Why not sister city arrangements with
South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, PRC?


Next thing you know they will be looking for sister city arrangements with Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Somalia.....

Anonymous said...

I saw a picture on Facebook where Consular General Khan was given a framed City of Elk Grove certificate by Mr. Ly, but no mention of this was made at the City Council meeting. What was this certificate related to?

Yes....proceed with caution. Very disturbing "reports surfaced" for sure.

Anonymous said...

Looking for Pakistani votes, "public/private" soccer field investment, and local real estate purchases?

Anonymous said...

Photo album can be seen here. At the right top of the photo is an arrow that will open photo viewer. Hopefully this works......

Anonymous said...

Anon. 22:53 Most likely...we need all the help we can get before our city leaders bankrupt us. However I'm thinkin' it may be the reverse....what can EG do for me. As our past will tell you that seems to be our motto. BTW, what was in that gift...THE GROW?

Anonymous said...

I am of the opinion all the sister city photo ops are just for publicity. If these councilmen really did their homework, as we have seen in the past, they wouldn’t be so eager.

And really, shouldn’t these two Steves be concerned about getting their own city in order before taking on other cities? Both appear to be all about ego and pomp!

Anonymous said...

I agreed Anon. 9:47...EG Food Bank has to move & has had a hugh increase in traffic, plus the Center for our Youth is also short on funds. Charity starts at home....

Anonymous said...

In looking at this picture, "Can anyone say Napoleon Complex?"

Anonymous said...

Just read the linked article. If the allegations are true, and it appears other politicians have run for the hills, these two councilmen have embarrassed our city, and themselves, once again!

Hey Detrick and Ly: Ever heard of Google?

Anonymous said...

Ever heard of Google? So funny! Had our city heard of Google we wouldn't be having this lawsuit against P3 International...they're slow learners!

SteveB6509 said...

A few thought here:

1. If these allegations are true, they are disgusting. However, I would also note that the reference in the article is one of only two web sites that discuss this. It does sound more like political protesting to me,

2. I looked through the pictures and see no formed Elk Grove certificate was given,

3. Yes, we have issues to deal with but it does not mean you ignore other business.

Anonymous said...

There was more than one album published on Facebook. This group is at the dinner given and when the certificate was presented by Ly. Starts at picture #72.

I believe it was stated above, "alleging", which may indicate many things.

Most of us would never have even known about this had Ly & Detrick not made such an issue about the meeting at the council meeting and mentioning the feasibility of Pakistan becoming a Sister City. Of course they forgot to mention anything about the city giving him some kind of certificate. The Nigeria fiasco is still on our minds, so please move carefully.

Peppermint Patty said...

Anon 7:57 - thank you for posting that link to the dinner attended by council members Ly and Detrick.

Was it just me, or was Mrs. Detrick the only woman in attendance at the dinner?

Anonymous said...

Yes 8:34, I too saw that. Most likely because a Pakistan womans quality of life is abysmally sub-standard and would not be attending a dinner such as this. Something I believe our two councilmembers missed and another reason we should tread very carefully in supporting a country such as this as a Sister City. Perhaps another GOOGLE problem.......

The light's out and no one's home said...

Mr. Ly and Mr. Detrick continue to show a serious and severe lack of intelligence in my opinion. A 5-year-old child knows how to research and Google online for information regarding any topic.

Pakistan is a nation that at the very least harbors terrorists. Bin Laden???? What about the young girl who was shoot because she sought out an education? There is much information available from reliable sources online regarding the situation in Pakistan. And these things do not exist in a vacuum so Ly and Detrick cannot say they are isolated incidents or only occurred in a small portion of the country.

As the child of a member of the United States military, I would hope Mr. Hume would speak out against what Detrick and Ly have brought to the city's doorstep. In my opinion, Detrick and Ly have spit in the face of every solider, past and present, that has given their very being to protect and serve the United States of America. That includes Mr. Hume's father and, unfortunately, Detrick's father who apparently was a US Marine. I would implore Mr. Hume to put a stop to the stupidity of this offensive idea immediately.

Also, why do we have to look outside of the US for a sister city? How about forming a sister city relationship with a city within the US. Something that could potentially be economically and culturally beneficial to both.

Connie said...

What I don’t understand is that we already have a Sister City in Concepción de Ataco. Oscar o’con gave an update at a Council meeting in the last few months. He stated that city is still in need of aid.

Ataco still hasn’t fully recovered from the devastating hurricane and floods, not to mention the citywide poverty. When was the last time we sent any aid to Ataco? Why aren’t we doing more for that city instead of exploring a city in Pakistan especially given the comments here?

Norm DeYoung also approached the Council several times with another city he wanted the Council to consider. What happened there? Nothing to date.

It appears to me that all the city, or some of our elected leaders, want to do is build a resume of Sister Cities, get the initial hoopla la, and do nothing more.

Anonymous said...

How funny Ms. Connie. I think we should solicit a sister city that can send us aid! We're going to be bankrupt pretty soon what with all the "world class" projects in the pipeline.

Anonymous said...

I'd prefer this city council focus on city issues. I'm not opposed to international relations but these gents seem to forget that international diplomacy isn't a hobby. I suppose it's more fun than taking a selfie with a pothole or a plastic elk. Seriously, stop with the international diplomacy!

Anonymous said...

Japan, South Korea, Taiwan are progressive first world countries.

El Salvador, Kenya, Pakistan are third world countries.

Is Elk Grove sinking to the level of mediocrity in its outlook?

I nominate the Kingdom of Zamunda as a city to explore sister city relationship with.

Anonymous said...

Here are more pictures:

Anonymous said...

What just a measly plaque?

He probably wanted the key to the city.

Anonymous said...

Whatcha wanna bet Detrick has Pakistani money on his next campaign financial forms?

Anonymous said...

There is a whole, huge, unbelievable amount of ignorance in these comments about the Sister Cities International program.

Sister cities cover a very large range from third world countries to more industrialized.

Get a little bit informed, and stop the prejudice about countries, including Pakistan!

There are many educated Pakistanis, not all a bunch of terrorists.

Learn about our world.

Start with Wiki, at the very least.

Sister cities is an 'international' program, and many sizable US cities have up to several sister cities.

Too many provincial thinkers in Elk Grove. Grrrrrr......

Anonymous said...

Thank you for responding Anon. 19:57. I believe we are all well aware of the Sister City Intl. Program and what that entails. JMO, but what I believe we were all responding to was a councilmember mentioning a country, Pakistan, without the full support of the council, as being feasible as a Sister City. Now as far as know we do not make countries Sister Cities. There is also a process the city needs to follow and that entails and involves two-way communication and should mutually benefit partnering communities. Mr. Detrick was out of line to speak of this before it was fully vetted by all council members and perhaps brought before a committee as to exactly what city they were speaking of. Perhaps some of us are still hung up on our last Sister City suggestion that was not well vetted.

I also believe we need to concentrate on taking care of our present Sister City in Concepción de Ataco before we take on another. We're not a wealthy community.

With my tax dollars you get me input said...

Really??? Wikipedia??? There are more concrete and reliable resources of information than the dubious Wikipedia. Even my 5th grader knows not to click on Wikipedia or any citing of same.

The commentators here are not xenophobic, but rather councilphobic. Too many harebrained schemes coming from that group and each and every one seems to be destined to cost us more and more. How about a community meeting to discuss various sister city candidates? Let the community participate and have a stake in what city from what countries we would like to partner with.

As was noted in an earlier comment, why is the aid all one direction? Why can't it be mutually beneficial?

As for person-to-person outreach and communication, take a read of the young Mr. Espinoza. A life-changing experience that will shape all of his future interactions with peoples of varying cultures and backgrounds.

Lynn said...

How about if we focus on our own city issues, concentrate on our one sister city?
We need to work on making our community sustainable by providing excellent public transportation, better than minimum wage jobs, building the stronger neighborhoods we all want and helping our young people who live within foster care etc....

Stronger neighborhoods, correcting the job housing imbalance....and our council just are not able to stay focused. Has any of this happened??

I am tired of all their excuses for how come we cannot have a better bike path trail come our older roads are neglected.
Fluff and sound bites...empty promises.

Time for a change.

My opinion remains unchanged; I do not have proof.
However, Corrupt as Bell, Bankrupt as Vallejo

Anonymous said...

"FOCUS"...that's the problem with our city council, they have a major problem staying FOCUSED. We start many projects, but never see them through until another new one is mentioned or started. That is when a community loses trust in our electeds. It's not about you and trying to make yourself shine in the political arena at a hugh cost to the taxpayer. We are an overwhelmed community with so many studies, projects and ideas coming from the dias it makes your head swim. It's time..actually past time, for our city to just focus on one project and follow it through. At the present rate they're going we'll be bankrupt before we even finish one.

Anonymous said...

Instead of as bankrupt as Vallejo;

How about as bankrupt as Stockton?

At least Stockton has a nice waterfront, a symphony, really good local restaurants, a regional shopping mall, a high quality private university, the Miracle Mile

What does Elk Grove have?

A freeway sign with a plastic elk

Fast food joints and strip malls

Lynn said...

I use Vallejo because that is how long ago I began to believe that our city leaders were going to lead the residents of Elk Grove down that same path. I was laughed at by everyone I shared that with....however some who have been paying attention to the spending habits of our city leaders are no longer laughing. Yep always easy to spend others monies on consultants and feasibility studies that lead to nothing. Our great reserve bank of money is dropping. No monies for road repairs in the future....

Remember; taxpayers of Vallejo had to help bail out their city with tax increases so they could have basic services such as police.

Anonymous said...

Actions such as this and many before this doesn't mean our city will always gets off scott free. As we have seen many times before, there's always the great fall that's maybe lurking just around the corner. It's time for our city to put that "smart cap" on and start operating within our means. There's always someone else out there looking for an easy buck and if I should be that person, think I maybe would have found it in EG. Easy pickins!

Anonymous said...

Great idea! The two Steves should lead a trip to Pakistan to check out this potential sister city. :))

Anonymous said...

"political protesting"....perhaps. Are we so desperate that we need to enter that arena? An earlier article...

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