EGN's Year in Review - Part II

Elk Grove residents saw another year of unique events that will shape the future of their City. Aside from having two new city council membe...




Elk Grove residents saw another year of unique events that will shape the future of their City. Aside from having two new city council members, there is now a California Assembly member and Sacramento County Supervisor from Elk Grove.

While the 2022 elections were significant, other events happened in 2022 worth reviewing.  


July 

Robles formally declares District 4 candidacy

After initially declaring his candidacy for Elk Grove City Council District 2, Elk Grove Planning Commissioner Sergio Robles switched gears and formally announced his candidacy for District 4. 

It appeared that Robles would not be challenged for the next several weeks, but that changed. 

Developers get their money grab qualified for the Sacramento County ballot



After successfully gathering the required signatures, business advocacy groups with real estate developers' financial backing qualified a massive tax increase proposal for the November countywide ballot.

The proposal was designated Measure A and sought to raise over $8 billion by increased sales taxes. With a pile of cash for their campaign and only a simple majority needed for passage, supporters were already counting their chickens! 

Instead of seeking solutions, Elk Grove City Council bowed to unsubstantiated fears of homeless

The proposed Oak Rose apartment complex in Elk Grove, Calif., would have provided supportive services for individuals trying to escape homelessness. 

In a display of political cowardice unlike any in the City's history, the Elk Grove City Council bowed to unsubstantiated fears of District 2 residents and denied a project to assist individuals out of homelessness. The project was the Oak Rose supportive housing proposed on Elk Grove Boulevard in the City's Old Town district.

Even though there were District 2 residents who supported the project, most speakers at the Elk Grove City Council meeting painted unflattering and unsubstantiated pictures of individuals who could have been assisted by the project and the services it sought to offer. 

Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen and her city council members fell all over themselves claiming they support projects to assist the homeless, but they also parroted the talking points repeated by District 2 residents that it was the wrong project in the wrong location. So much for Elk Grove being a city of compassion. 


Elk Grove launches cash grab

At the same meeting where they pandered to the lowest common denominator among its residents, the Elk Grove City Council also decided to launch a money grab.

The city council decided to seek a one percent local sales tax by placing it on the November ballot. Designated as Measure E, the tax increase was forecast to initially generate over $23 million in new revenues for the City.

The City of Elk Grove and the Cosumnes Community Services District promised that it would improve response times for public safety, among other benefits, if approved.   

Union Pacific Rail crossing malfunction...Again





August

Houston developer selected for Elk Grove's Project elevate

One of the City of Elk Grove's civic center projects in the coming years is the so-called Project Elevate. To help develop plans for what is being billed as a 20-acre mixed-use development on Elk Grove Boulevard, the City Council directed city manager Jason Berhmann to negotiate with Houston-based developer Hines Interests.   

Since then, little has been reported on Project Elevate. But, given the hype of how the project could be a game-changer for the City and that it is located on one of Elk Grove's most congested traffic corridors, perhaps Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen should add a sixth point to her five-point plan to resolve Elk Grove's fast-growing traffic.  

Robles gets last-minute challenger; another candidate entered District 2 race

Just when it looked like Sergio Robles would be unchallenged for the Elk Grove District 4 seat, at the last minute, a challenger appeared. That challenger was Giezi Bermudez.

Also, as the August filing deadline approached, a third candidate entered the Elk Grove City Council District 2 contest. The entry of Michelle Kile, the only Republican in the three-candidate race, almost guaranteed whoever won the race would take office with a plurality, not majority, of votes.


Surprise! Sky River opens early!

With a scheduled opening date of September, it was with some surprise that the Sky River casino in Elk Grove opened in mid-August. While elected officials fell all over themselves, praising the Wilton Rancheria gambling facility during their private viewing of the facility, others were not as kind in their commentary.

Along with creating traffic problems, nearby residential neighborhoods were inundated with casino customers who were unable to find parking at the casino. The traffic problems persisted for several weeks, but the intense interest in the casino has leveled off. 

Read what others said about the casino
Robles appears as developers' favorite for District 4

If there is one constant in Elk Grove politics, it is that developers dictate who they want on the Elk Grove City Council. Based on the contributions he received, Mr. Robles was the choice of developers.

Once these developers appear before the city council, Robles will fall in line and praise his contributors. Did you expect anything different? 
 
Elk Grove supports Southeast Connector road roundabouts




One of the trickiest aspects of the Southeast Connector road between Elk Grove and El Dorado Hills has been how should Elk Grove's rural Sheldon neighborhood be addressed. Ideally, the Connector road would make a straight line along Grant Line Road more akin to a freeway.

That idea has long met resistance in Elk Grove's rural Sheldon neighborhood. 

To address the Sheldon concerns about the effects the connecter road would have on their community, it was decided that roundabouts would be the preferred configuration of the road, As we shall see, however, those plans could be in jeopardy.  
 
Elk Grove Assistant City Attorney Alves calls developers' attorney a liar 


EGN's second most viewed post of the year shows Pat Hume doing his best Elvis Immitation




The second most widely viewed post on Elk Grove News this year, which had over 14,000 views, can be attributed to Sacramento County Supervisor-elect Pat Hume. 

Was Hume discussing some important policy or pillaring his opponent to generate such interest? No, he was doing his imitation of The King, Elvis Presley.

As we have seen, Hume has a particular flair for acting on the dais, so we can only hope he takes his act to the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors. And hey, if things don't work out Downtown for Hume, given his popularity, he might want to take his act to YouTube or TikTok! 

Watch Hume's performance here. 

Elk Grove School District drops a bomb on special needs students, families

With no notice, the Elk Grove Unified School District discontinued a program for special needs students at the beginning of the school year. The Inclusive Education program provided needed services for many district students.

The district justified the discontinuation because of staffing shortages, which caught parents off guard, with at least one calling it one of the darkest days for their family. Nonetheless, the district's change has not gone unchallenged.   



September

With all her campaign cash, Mayor Singh-Allen needs to hire a proofreader!  




Bobbie Singh-Allen kicked off her reelection campaign with an error-riddled mailer. Given all the money her patrons have lavished on her, a more professional piece could have been produced. 

Criticism mounts for Elk Grove Unified

Following the fiasco of the discontinuation of the Inclusive Education program, the Elk Grove Unified School District started the school year with more criticism.
 



Owner of German Shephard 'Zeus"and supporters plea with Elk Grove City Hall 

An ongoing controversy for the City of Elk Grove has been the euthanization of a dog named Zeus. The controversy started last May and continued through the summer when the canine was seized by Elk Grove Animal Control officers.

In September, the dog's owner and several others appeared before the Elk Grove City Council, appealing the order to euthanize Zeus. 




Hume dodges reproductive rights question during a candidate forum

As he did throughout his campaign for Sacramento County Board of Supervisors, Pat Hume dodged all sorts of questions. During the League of Women Voters of Sacramento County forum, Hume dodged a question on reproductive rights. 




October


Measure E 'informational' mailers sent to Elk Grove voters




It was once said of the late Sen. Bob Dole that he never met a new tax he didn't like. As time marches on, between new and creative Mello Roos fees and now regressive taxes, the City of Elk Grove has never met a tax hike they didn't want to plant a big, wet, French Kiss on.   

As part of their quest for more taxpayers' money, the City sent so-called informational mailers to voters on Measure E, the $23 million annual tax grab.  Anything for money! 

Opposition surfaces against Measure A


Even though proponents of Measure A had a well-funded, multi-faceted media campaign to convince voters to give $8.3 billion to billionaire developers, opposition to the scheme started to coalesce in October. The opposition came from an assortment of conservative anti-tax crusaders to environmentalists.

Even though they had different reasons to oppose the scheme, they all agreed it was a money grab meant to benefit billionaires. Would these groups be able to effectively convey their message? 

State of California rebukes Elk Grove for denial of Oak Rose project

In what might be an embarrassment for another city is just another day at city hall when Elk Grove officials learned the State of California rebuked the denial of the Oak Rose supportive housing project. It seems the City, once again, is getting more bum legal guidance from Elk Grove City Attorney Jonathan Hobbs.

Notwithstanding Hobbs' bum guidance, the State of California Housing and Community Development Department issued a scathing 11-page report on the denial. It seems Hobbs gives Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen and her city council legal opinions they want to hear rather than what they should hear. 

Elk Grove approves five-year project labor agreement

After a multi-year effort, in October, the Elk Grove City Council approved a project labor agreement. 

The five-year agreement with the Sacramento-Sierra Building and Construction Trades Council (SSBCTC), the AFL-CIO Council, and its member unions dictate any capital project by the City of Elk Grove over $1 million can only be bid by companies with union workforces. The agreement does not apply to maintenance work, and according to a staff report, it promotes the "efficiency of construction operations" by prohibiting strikes and work stoppages. 

Zeus is euthanized by Elk Grove

Even though there were state and federal lawsuits filed to stop the euthanization of the German Shepard Zeus, in what was viewed as the equivalent of a late-night document dump, the City of Elk Grove announced the action on the late Friday afternoon of October 28.  

Aren't there rules against destroying evidence? 

November

As the remains of Zeus returned, family told 'have a great day!'



Days after the dog named Zeus was euthanized by the City of Elk Grove, the owners sought the remains.

When they obtained the remains, the body of the dog was unceremoniously wrapped in cardboard and duct tape. Worse, according to the family, they were told by one of the animal shelter employees to 'have a great day!

Measure A killed, but Measure E passes

Even though not all the ballots had been processed, by mid-November, it was apparent Sacramento County Measure A was headed to defeat. This was a stunning turn of events as proponents of A were well-organized and well-funded.

Sacramento County voters saw through the numerous false claims of Measure A proponents and smelled the rot. Unfortuately, Elk Grove voters didn't pick up on the stench of Measure E and approved it by a comfortable margin.

All we can say is the City should invest that $23 million annually in underpasses along the Union Pacific Railroad tracks in the Old Elk Grove part of town. After all, what better way of improving public safety responses than eliminating the all too frequent blockages of roadways by stopped Union Pacific trains!  

Union Pacific trains strike or make that stops...Again! 

Speaking of Union Pacific blocking roadways in Old Elk Grove and negatively affecting public response times, on the evening before Thanksgiving, they struck again.

Memo to Mayor Singh-Allen - time to expand your six-point traffic congestion plan to seven! 




California Supreme Court reinstates lawsuit against Explore Elk Grove

A pre COVID-19 sexual harassment lawsuit against the former executive director of Explore Elk Grove was reinstated by the California Supreme Court after it was found lower courts had errored in their rulings. The lawsuit was brought by a former female contractor who asserts the former executive director, who was subsequently fired, made unwanted romantic advances that, when declined, were held against her.  

December 

Elk Grove Mayor travels to Washinton DC party on the taxpayers' dime


Life for Elk Grove Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen is sweet! Not only did she easily win a second term by a comfortable margin, but she also got to celebrate in Washington DC thanks to taxpayers! 

According to her social media feeds, Madame Mayor partied the night away at the Whitehouse. On top of that, according to the City's check register, taxpayers footed the bill.

Being mayor has advantages for Singh-Allen, especially when she can put it to taxpayers. And now that the City has an additional $23 million from Measure E, Her Honor can enjoy more extravagant travel. 

Anything for Bobbie!! 

Singh-Allen to Hume - don't let the screen door hit you on your way out! 

During his last meeting as an Elk Grove City Council member, Pat Hume was "honored" with words by Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen. During her commentary, Sigh-Allen essentially called her supposed longtime friend a creep. 




Hume critic commends his service to the City

As if to refute Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen's portrayal of Pat Hume as a creep, a frequent critic offered comments at the same meeting complimenting Hume, who is Elk Grove's longest-serving city council member.



How was your year? 


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4 comments

Renegade said...

All true and cumulatively, quite embarrassing. Can't we demand better from our leaders and city employees?

Atticus Finch said...

@Renegade. We certainly can but if history is any guide, we will be left bitterly disappointed. I prefer to demand better of our VOTERS.

Eye on Elk Grove said...

Well at least, we don't have a George Santos on the Elk Grove City Council, or do we?

Renegade said...

You're killin' me, Eye!

I guess that's a good point. It could be worse.

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