Rancho Cordova Signature Building Changes Hands

By Shelly Lembke  |  2017-01-13

Photo shows one aspect of the unique architecture and design for One Capital Center. The distinctive building was recently acquired by Ethan Conrad Properties Inc. --Photo courtesy of Ethan Conrad Inc.

One of Rancho Cordova’s most distinctive office buildings, One Capital Center, was recently acquired by area business heavyweight Ethan Conrad Properties, Inc. The company announced the purchase completion in December.

“As far as why I purchased the property…this is one of the nicest Class A office buildings on the Highway 50 Corridor,” said CEO and company founder, Ethan Conrad. “In addition, it is also located in one of the best areas in the Highway 50 Corridor.

The 6-story building, situated at 3100 Zinfandel Drive was built when Rancho Cordova began to develop the business and residential areas south of Highway 50. The approximately 30,000 square foot space is slated to undergo minor renovations that Conrad anticipates will boost the local economy. He is already seeing a promising uptick leasing numbers, with the building already at 85% of capacity.

“It simply needs a little remodeling work performed to it in order for it to be the nicest office property on the Highway 50 Corridor. Once this work is performed, it will make the fair market value rent for the property increase accordingly,” said Conrad.

Ethan Conrad Properties owns and manages hundreds of industrial, office and retail commercial properties and buildings throughout Northern California and continues to grow. The company, founded in 1995, employs over 100 people in-house to manage, maintain and remodel its properties, according to corporate Vice President Grant Keeney.

“The combination of good looking, well maintained properties and competitive pricing has been pivotal in achieving occupancy rates that are consistently over 90%. By using our core competencies, we are able to transform these problems into opportunities for success,” states the company website.

Rancho Cordova's History

City Open for Comprehensive Transit Plan Bids

By Shelly Lembke  |  2017-01-13

Citrus Heights is ready to revisit its Comprehensive Transit Plan and will now be taking bids from interested companies. According to the city’s Transit Plan, qualified firms can register with the city online or through the General Services Department.

Per the city of Citrus Heights, “This project is federally funded and is subject to the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Policy.” At this juncture, the city is searching for professional consulting services to “develop a Comprehensive Transit Plan and recommendations for the City.”

The General Services Department selection process begins with Requests for Proposals (RFP) and then evaluates the proposals and creates consultant teams to determine which companies to interview.

Part of the city’s requirements is ongoing collaboration with city staff and “significant outreach with Citrus Heights residents and community stakeholders” via surveys, open houses, focus groups and personal as well as group interviews.

According to the city, “Engagement shall be designed to obtain feedback on current services, and assess demand, preferences and community priorities for public transportations services.” The chosen consultant must, according to Citrus Heights, “ensure all public outreach events are publicly noticed to promote maximum attendance.” This will include website, media releases, public notices and surveys and more. Media and translation for Spanish-speaking residents is also required.

The ability work well with other local transit entities is also a stated necessity. According to the City’s current documentation, “The Project includes ongoing and regular coordination with RT (Regional Transit) as one of the Project partners. In addition, the Consultant shall coordinate as appropriate with other local agencies… potentially impacting Citrus Heights transit users, including Roseville Transit, Placer County Transit Authority, Folsom Transit services and the City of Rancho Cordova’s Transit Division.”

The selected consulting firm must show Scope of Work, Project Management, Personnel and Staffing, Qualifications, Experience and References, Federal/State Funded Project Experience and Quality and Responsiveness of the Proposal. Interested parties can contact the city at GSD-Mailbox@citrusheights.net or 916 727 4770. Proposals are due by 2 pm January 20, 2017.

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Major League Lacrosse All-Star Game Coming to Bonney Field in 2017

Source: Cal Expo  |  2017-01-13

Along with the All-Star Game, MLL has more exciting activities planned for Friday, July 7 and Saturday, July 8. Before the All-Star Game there will be a FanFest at Bonney Field where fans can meet MLL players, enjoy live music and interactive exhibits.

The world's best lacrosse players are coming to Sacramento, CA. Major League Lacrosse has chosen Bonney Field at Cal Expo as the site for the 16th All-Star Game in 2017. The MLL All-Star Game will take place on Saturday, July 8 at 6 p.m. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at www.ticketmaster.com.

Along with the All-Star Game, MLL has more exciting activities planned for Friday, July 7 and Saturday, July 8. Before the All-Star Game there will be a FanFest at Bonney Field where fans can meet MLL players, enjoy live music and interactive exhibits. The All-Star Shootout Tournament presented by ADVNC Lacrosse and the All-Star Skills Competition will take place at Cherry Island Sports Complex in Rio Linda, CA. More information about those events can be found at www.advnclacrosse.com.

MLL chose to host the 2017 All-Star Game in northern California because it is the epicenter of lacrosse in the state of California and arguably, the Pacific Coast. According to US Lacrosse, there are more youth lacrosse players registered with US Lacrosse in the Northern California region than in greater Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego combined. Also, the region played host to the San Francisco Dragons, an MLL franchise that played from 2006-08.

This top-caliber event is just the latest addition to hit the pitch of Bonney Field, which is also home to the Sacramento Republic FC and PRO Rugby Sacramento. For more information about the MLL All-Star Game excitement see news.majorleaguelacrosse.com.

Cal Expo is home to the California State Fair and plays host to hundreds of other signature events each year. The Cal Expo property is home to Bonney Field, a premier sports and entertainment venue with seating of 11,000.

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Cordova High Students Experience SAFE Financial Reality

By Shelly Lembke  |  2017-01-13

Students from Cordova High School attended a Financial Reality Fair sponsored by SAFE Credit Union. 
--Photos courtesy of Folsom Cordova Unified School District

Cordova High students recently had the opportunity to participate in a financial “Reality Fair” sponsored by SAFE Credit Union. The Fair provides students a taste of real life financial responsibilities such as learning to manage a household budget in a fun, interactive, and no-risk atmosphere, according Daniel Thigpen, Director of Communication and Community Engagement for the Folsom Cordova Unified School District.

“It was a success and educational" said math teacher Cameron Parker. “Students learned that it is expensive out there.”

The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) promotes such programs through credit unions across the country, referring to them as Interactive Teen Financial Literacy Tools. Participating students get a realistic look at the costs and decisions they will face out in the real world.

“It’s like a giant version of the board game ‘Life,’” said Thigpen. “Students are given an imaginary occupation, salary, and family profile and then tasked to rent or buy a home, buy a car, pay for groceries and deal with unexpected circumstances, such as a flat tire, or a job lay-off, or a surprise bonus. What they learn is more than just balancing a budget. It gets them thinking about the kind of job or career they might want to pursue.”

Once students choose a career, they find out about starting salaries, they create budgets which mandate living within their means. The balanced budgets must account for life’s differing wants and needs such as housing, food, clothing, utilities, transportation, travel and entertainment.

Throughout the fair, there are many temptations for additional spending, and students must learn to balance their wants and needs to live on their own. After the students have visited the various booths covering components of independent living, students balance their budget, and then sit down with a financial counselor for review, according to the NCUF website.

“We are grateful for the generosity of our business partners like SAFE Credit Union for providing enriching, real-world lessons that will last a lifetime. It’s important for our youth to gain the life skills necessary to succeed independently in today’s world, and SAFE has created a fun, engaging – and realistic – way to make an impact on students before they enter the workforce,” said Thigpen.

According to the NCUF, currently 26 states are offering Reality Fair Programs and in 2015, an estimated 67,465 high school students participated in a Reality Fair.

SAFE Credit Union began in 1940 to provide services for the Sacramento Air Depot employees, eventually becoming the Sacramento Air Force Employees Federal Union (SAFE). It merged with McClellan Federal Credit Union in 1996, and then later with Capital Power Credit Union and American River HealthPro Credit Union. SAFE opened its 21st branch in Rancho Cordova over five years ago.

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Mills Middle School Garners Prestigious Anti-Bullying Award

By Shelly Lembke  |  2017-01-13

Mills Middle School in Rancho Cordova recently received brand new award for its Anti-Bullying Program. Selected from among a large pool of California schools, Mills was one of two schools to be granted the coveted “Premier” award and a $1500 donation from the Lozano Smith Foundation.

“We were very excited for Mills. They truly have a year round program,” said Derek Morrison, the Director of Client Services for the Lozano Smith Foundation (LSF). The Anti-Bullying Award is a new innovation for LSF, which stays in touch with hundreds of schools across California. “We see the good work they do every day,” Morrison continued. The monies awarded are intended to encourage schools to keep up the good work by expanding programs and reaching more students.

The Folsom Cordova Unified School District (FCUSD) couldn’t be more pleased at the accolade. “Folsom Cordova is immensely proud of Mills Middle School for earning this recognition: Only six districts in the state received this honor, and Mills was the top recipient,” according to Daniel Thigpen, Director of Communication and Community Engagement for FCUSD.

“What Mills – and so many of our other schools recognize – is that it takes year-round, ongoing effort and multiple approaches to make a real impact on school climate and culture. That means engaging all stakeholders – students, families, staff members, community partners, and mental health professionals – and using evidence-based practices. While there is always more work to do, we are thrilled that Mills has been highlighted for its progress,” said Thigpen.

The FCUSD tally shows that the Mills Anti-Bullying Program is generating some impressive results, such as promoting a safe learning environment, drastically cut the number of bullying incidents and reducing suspensions by half.

The Mills Program consists in part by the “creation of a Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) team, which consists of teachers, administrators, parents, and a student leader. This group is tasked with leading evidence-based strategies to create a positive school climate and take a proactive approach to discipline and bullying prevention,” according to the FCUSD.

Among the school’s other initiatives:

  • Point Break workshops encourage students to develop character, confidence, and responsibility. Point Break addresses core relational issues and challenges young people face daily.
  • Mills Bills: students can use these “dollars” - earned by positive behavior - at the student store.
  • Boys to Men: This program works with boys who may have a challenging home environment by providing support, mentoring, field trips, and positive role models. Students learn skills to be successful in all areas, develop character and reach goals.
  • All staff members have been trained to identify symptoms of mental health problems and strategies to support students. Students facing mental health challenges are more likely to be targets of bullying.
  • Young Women of Mills: staff meets weekly with girls who have reached out with feelings of depression or thoughts of suicide.

The Mills Program is only two years old, but impressive for “truly inspiring work that your school leaders and students have clearly shown,” commented the Lozano Smith Foundation to the school.

The LSF focuses its resources on its core mission points by supporting California community education partners: Student Achievement, Leadership & Mentoring, Professional Development and Community Engagement.

According to Morrison, “The Foundation is committed to providing financial support to education-based associations and K-14 school districts, assisting educators with greater access to training programs, helping close the education achievement gap among various student populations and creating partnerships in communities throughout California.”

The Lozano Smith Foundation, states on their website that it “believes that all children should have the opportunity to reach their full potential and that diverse and engaged societies together with effective leaders enhance the quality of life and well-being of all people in their communities.

We are committed to supporting the visionary leaders and organizations that share these same goals. We believe that the best way to achieve these goals is to empower education and public sector leaders, and those they represent, to overcome the complex hurdles that prevent them from accomplishing the goals we – as a community – rely on them to achieve.”

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Local Sailor Participates in Pacific Partnership

Source: Navy Office of Community Outreach  |  2017-01-12

Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 2nd Class Thomas Williams (shown above), from Sacramento, California, assigned to the Blackjacks of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 21 U.S. 
--Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Trevor Kohl-rus/Released

Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 2nd Class Thomas Williams, from Sacramento, California, assigned to the Blackjacks of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 21, prepares to jump into the water during a rehearsal for a Pacific Partnership 2016 search and rescue drill.

During the drill, aviation rescue swimmers hoisted simulated casualties from the water into an MH-60S helicopter for medical evacuation to hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19). The Pacific Partnership search and rescue field training exercise spanned across three locations in Padang and included a water rescue, a field hospital for patient triage and transport, and a mass casualty at a local soccer field.

The day's events were facilitated by Tentara Nasional Indonesia, local first responders and the Pacific Partnership humanitarian assistance and disaster relief team. This is the fifth time Pacific Partnership has visited Indonesia. Partner nations are working side-by-side with local organizations during disaster response training, civil engineering projects, Women, Peace, and Security seminars, medical subject matter expert exchanges and a live field training exercise aimed at improving the capacity of local government, civilian agencies and partner militaries to collectively respond in crisis.

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Girl Scout Cookies: 100 years, 9 Cookies, 5 Skills, One Purpose!

Source: Girl Scouts Heart of Central California  |  2017-01-12

The five skills that participating in Girl Scouts build in future Girl Leaders are; goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics. 
--Photo courtesy of Girls Scouts of America

Building Girl Leaders One Package at a Time

This year marks the 100th year since Girl Scouts first started selling cookies. The cookie sale teaches valuable life skills and the proceeds, which all stay local, support their adventures and community service projects all year long!

Girl Scouts nationwide are celebrating this 100th cookie-versary with a brand new S’mores Cookie and you’re among the first in the country to try it! The cookies are available to order starting January 13. Look for Girl Scouts with order forms! For the third year running, the cost of Girl Scout Cookies is $5 per package.

The cookies arrive in Sacramento on February 18 at the Girl Scout Cookie MegaDrop at Raley Field. They are expecting to distribute more than 100,000 cases of cookies to Girl Scout troops throughout Northern and Central California. Cookies will be available through booth sales starting February 24.

The five skills that participating in Girl Scouts build in future Girl Leaders are; goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics.

Girl Scouts is the world’s most successful organization dedicated to creating girl leaders, with 3.2 million active members and more than 59 million alumnae. Since its founding in 1912, women have explored new fields of knowledge, learned valuable skills and developed strong core values through Girl Scouting. The Girl Scout organization has shaped the lives of the majority of female senior executives and business owners, two-thirds of women in Congress, and virtually every female astronaut.

The national organization is Girl Scouts of the USA; the local council is Girl Scouts Heart of Central California (GSHCC). GSHCC is devoted to building Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers and Leaders (G.I.R.L.s) in Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, Colusa, El Dorado, Glenn, Mariposa, Merced, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Solano, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tuolumne, Yolo and Yuba counties.

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Four Families Displaced by Fire in Multiple Units of Four-plex

Source: Michelle Eidam, Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District  |  2017-01-12

Metro Fire crews were dispatched to the 9000 block of Folsom Boulevard for multiple callers reporting a house fire.

Just after 7:00 am on January 7th, Metro Fire crews were dispatched to the 9000 block of Folsom Boulevard for multiple callers reporting a house fire. First arriving crews found heavy fire coming from a four-plex and immediately initiated fire attack. While firefighting operations were occurring in the unit of origin, additional firefighters initiated fire attack in a second involved unit and began searching for trapped residents.

A common attic throughout the four-plex allowed the fire to spread quickly. With a coordinated fire attack, the thirty-five firefighters on scene extinguished the fire, containing it to the attic and two units. Two units sustained major fire damage. The other two had fire damage in the attic, but only smoke damage inside; firefighters were able to salvage all of the personal belongings from these units. Residents from all four units were displaced; Red Cross was requested to assist the ten adults and four children with temporary housing. The cause of the fire is undetermined. Damage is estimated at $250,000; no injuries to civilians or firefighters were reported.

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Tax Filing Season Begins January 23

Source: Internal Revenue Service  |  2017-01-12

The Internal Revenue Service has announced that the nation’s tax season will begin Monday, Jan. 23, 2017 and reminded taxpayers claiming certain tax credits to expect a longer wait for refunds.

The IRS will begin accepting electronic tax returns that day, with more than 153 million individual tax returns expected to be filed in 2017. The IRS again expects more than four out of five tax returns will be prepared electronically using tax return preparation software.

Many software companies and tax professionals will be accepting tax returns before Jan. 23 and then will submit the returns when IRS systems open. The IRS will begin processing paper tax returns at the same time. There is no advantage to filing tax returns on paper in early January instead of waiting for the IRS to begin accepting e-filed returns.

The IRS reminds taxpayers that a new law requires the IRS to hold refunds claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) until Feb. 15. In addition, the IRS wants taxpayers to be aware it will take several days for these refunds to be released and processed through financial institutions. Factoring in weekends and the President’s Day holiday, the IRS cautions that many affected taxpayers may not have actual access to their refunds until the week of Feb. 27.

“For this tax season, it’s more important than ever for taxpayers to plan ahead,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said. “People should make sure they have their year-end tax statements in hand, and we encourage people to file as they normally would, including those claiming the credits affected by the refund delay. Even with these significant changes, IRS employees and the entire tax community will be working hard to make this a smooth filing season for taxpayers.”

The IRS also reminds taxpayers that they should keep copies of their prior-year tax returns for at least three years. Taxpayers who are changing tax software products this filing season will need their adjusted gross income from their 2015 tax return in order to file electronically. The Electronic Filing Pin is no longer an option. Taxpayers can visit IRS.Gov/GetReady for more tips on preparing to file their 2016 tax return.

The filing deadline to submit 2016 tax returns is Tuesday, April 18, 2017, rather than the traditional April 15 date. In 2017, April 15 falls on a Saturday, and this would usually move the filing deadline to the following Monday – April 17. However, Emancipation Day – a legal holiday in the District of Columbia – will be observed on that Monday, which pushes the nation’s filing deadline to Tuesday, April 18, 2017. Under the tax law, legal holidays in the District of Columbia affect the filing deadline across the nation.

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Annual Business Outlook & Economic Forecast Seminar Coming to Rancho Cordova

By Shelly Lembke  |  2017-01-12

With the old year behind and the new one getting into full swing, Rancho Cordova will be the site for the Annual Business Outlook & Economic Forecast event on January 27th at the Rancho Cordova Marriot.

Hosted by the Rancho Cordova Chamber of Commerce and local sponsors, the event will feature noted presentations by national, regional and local speakers who will address the signs and signals in the business economy.

“The Chamber is proud to present our annual Business Outlook & Economic Forecast on behalf of our members and the local business community,” said Rancho Cordova Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Diann H. Rogers.

Well-researched market analysis is at the heart of the venue. “Part of business prosperity is awareness of trends, policies and the plans that will shape this year and the next. This year’s program will be excellent,” said Rogers. “Our business community has gone through a lot over the past decade and we are looking forward – forward to 2017, forward to growth and prosperity, and forward to what the future will offer.”

Mark Vinter, Managing Director & Senior Economist Wells Fargo Securities, LLC and Wells Fargo & Company; Barry Broome, President & CEO Greater Sacramento Area Economic Council and the City of Rancho Cordova Economic Development Department will all be speaking on differing aspects of economic movement.

The Rancho Cordova Chamber of Commerce will present the findings of two local studies: the 2017 Rancho Cordova Economic Index and the Rancho Cordova Business Confidence Survey.

“We urge you to sponsor a table and host clients, colleagues or vendors. This event is the perfect way to kick off 2017,” Rogers stated.

The doors open at 7:30 a.m. and the program begins promptly at 8:00 a.m. The Marriot is located at 11211 Point East Drive in Rancho Cordova.  The $35 per person ticket price includes a full breakfast, program and materials. Contact Diann Rogers for questions or reservations via email (DHRogers@RanchoCordova.org), phone (916 273 5700) or online (www.RanchoCordova.org).

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