Do you have a talent, and want to show it off? Enter your arts and crafts, best apple pie, photography, painting, cut flower, or largest home grown tomato. Imagine the thrill of winning a blue ribbon at the Fair for your special talent.
Be sure to enter the Contra Costa County Fair’s competitive exhibits – and join the thousands of Contra Costa County residents who enter exhibits each year in the Fair. There are hundreds of categories and specialty contests for adults and children.
The Contra Costa County Fair’s Exhibit Handbook, which includes all the information you need to enter exhibits, is now available on the Fair’s website at www.ContraCostaFair.com. Online entries are currently being accepted until April 14th.
Simply log-on to the Fair’s website at www.ContraCostaFair.com to complete the entry process.
Contra Costa County Fair
“Honoring the Past…Celebrating the Future”
May 18th – May 21st
If you’re interested in receiving a copy of the Fair’s free electronic newsletter, visit the Fair’s website to sign up.Read More
Washington, DC — Today, Friday, April 7, 2017 Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (D, CA-11) made the following statement on the U.S. Airstrikes in Syria.
“The atrocities carried out by the Russian-backed regime of President Bashar Al-Assad in Syria on its own innocent men, women, and children are uncivilized and unconscionable. Over the past six years, nearly ten million Syrian civilians have been displaced and driven from their homes, and almost four hundred thousand Syrians have lost their lives. The latest use of chemical weapons on its citizens by the Assad regime demands action by the international community.
The ability of the United States Administration to respond to these attacks is hindered by the relationship between President Trump and the Russian government, which has compromised his moral authority. These rash airstrikes alone are not sufficient to combat the war crimes perpetrated by the Assad regime. President Trump must provide a clear and rational strategy that will not only aid Syrian citizens, but also keep safe the men and women serving in the United States Armed Forces. This strategy must include consulting with Congress and seeking an Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), as required by the Constitution.”
Questions were sent to DeSaulnier asking what other actions he would suggest President Trump take in response to Al-Assad’s attacks on his own people and if they should include more U.S. ground troops in Syria. Please check back for his response.Read More
Sacramento, CA – Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D – Discovery Bay) led his colleagues today, Friday, April 7, 2017 in passing Senate Bill 1 and Assembly Constitutional Amendment 5 with the required two-thirds vote in both the Assembly and Senate. SB 1 now heads to the Governor for his approval and ACA 5 will head to the voters for their approval.
“Our roads are terrible, costing each person at least $760 in repairs, and the state was really just putting a Band-aid on a broken bone,” he said. “After two years of discussions and negotiations, passing SB 1 today is a testament to efforts to build a remarkable and diverse coalition to improve our transportation system that truly benefits everyone.”
SB 1 will resolve the long-term shortfall in transportation funding by provide new funding to make necessary road safety improvements and repair local streets, freeways, bridges, and overpasses. New revenues will generate on average $5 billion per year to improve efficiencies and effectiveness of transportation maintenance throughout the state. Roughly $3 billion annually will be allocated to fix roads, half of which will be directly allocated for local needs. The remaining $2 billion is split among other transportation-related programs.
Revenue sources for SB 1 include a 12 cent per gallon gas excise tax, ending the annual Board of Equalization adjustment, a 20 cent diesel excise tax, a 4% diesel sales tax increase, a per vehicle transportation improvement fee of no more than $50 for 87% of vehicles, a $100 fee on zero emissions vehicles, and $100 million gained in Caltrans efficiencies.
To ensure that these new revenues are allocated as intended, Frazier authored Assembly Constitutional Amendment 5. ACA 5 locks up transportation-related revenues from vehicle fees for use only for transportation maintenance and improvements, and prohibits use toward paying principal and interest on state transportation general obligation bonds.
An after-hours question was sent to his staff asking if Frazier had first considered reprioritizing existing state spending before pursuing tax increases. Please check back later for his response.Read More
Cites failure to ensure reliable transit & ineffective use of funds
Senator Steve Glazer (D-Orinda) who represents most of Contra Costa County in the California State Senate, issued the following statement today, regarding his vote against SB-1, the transportation funding bill which included a 12 cents per gallon gas tax increase, as well as increases to the Vehicle License Fee. He was the only Democrat in the Senate and only one of two in the entire legislature to vote no.
“I want to thank Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León, Sen. Jim Beall and Gov. Jerry Brown for their hard work in addressing the problem of crumbling roads and aging transportation systems.
My constituents are particularly dependent on good roads and highways and reliable transit systems, so I agree we need additional transportation investments.
But this transportation package did not have the support of my district, for good reasons. Even after a multi-million dollar lobbying effort supporting the $52 billion bill, sentiment in my district ran two-to-one opposing these new gas taxes and car registration fees.
My constituents have told me loud and clear that they want any new taxes to be spent more wisely and effectively. For instance, it doesn’t make sense to spend billions of dollars on an unpopular High Speed Rail system that backers claim might be completed by 2029 when it could go for transportation improvements today.
Beyond the issues of setting better spending priorities and taxes, I also believed this bill could have been improved. We need to be more forward thinking, where we recognize the role technology can play in allowing us to use our roads and highways more efficiently.
And we need a plan that provides commuters with the confidence and assurance that reliable transit will be there for them every day of the year.
This bill also failed to ensure that any new transportation funding given to local transportation agencies be used only for the purposes intended and not diverted to other uses.
I was also concerned about last-minute amendments to this bill that the environmental community and air quality regulators say will unwisely limit our ability to control diesel pollution from trucks. These changes have never been fully vetted and deserve more scrutiny.
I look forward to continued discussions with the governor in which we take into account the need to modernize our approach to transportation in an efficient and reliable manner.”
The bill passed both the State Senate and Assembly and awaits the signature of Governor Brown. To learn more about the bill, click here.Read More
The local taxpayers have been lied to, again, by big business, special interests and corrupt politicians. Save the ecology was the cry. Stop the over pollution of landfills with non-biodegradable materials they shouted. Help to save the earth was their mantra. All very noble causes, indeed.
However, when one uses these tactics just to reap a much larger profit, there is something that gnaws at the back of my mind, eats away at my common sense, irritates me to no end. They got their way by tugging at the heart strings of decent people and shaming the rest into falling in line. All done in the name of greed cleverly disguised as a god send to the ecology minded.
I am talking about plastic shopping bags and the fact that they were not banned as promised when pushing this law down our throats (like so many others).
They actually banned the retail outlets from providing these bags “free of charge”. One can get as many of these “demon bags” as one desires for a fee. Let me get this straight. I don’t get them free but I still get them, they end up in the same location and the only difference is that the consumer pays for them directly. Prices have not reflected the retailer’s gain but the profit margin certainly has. As I said, lied to again.
Thanks for listening.
By Daniel Borsuk
Contra Costa supervisors plan to revisit a personnel proposal that could boost aircraft rescue and firefighting readiness conditions at the county’s two airports when supervisors reconvene on April 18.
“This item needs more work,” County Administrator David Twa informed supervisors Tuesday upon recommending delaying action on the safety item concerning the county’s two airports: Buchanan Field in Concord and Byron Airport.
But according to Airports Director Keith Freitas, the proposal to create four Airport Safety Officer classifications to replace three 1980’s drafted classifications of Airport Operations Technician, Airport Operations Specialist, and Lead Airport Operations Specialist will bring the airports into compliance with current significantly increased regulatory standards and changes in aircraft rescue and firefighting training, certifications, and protocols.
The proposal will cost the county about $168,809 in extra annual salary and pension expenses because it calls for the creation of four Teamster classified positions, not three classifications as the county currently pays.
Freitas pointed out the four new classifications, may also turn around the county’s “dismal” retention rate among fire rescue personnel.
“Contra Costa County has a retention rate of 60 percent over the last four years,” he told the Contra Costa Herald. “Many candidates simply decline to interview or, if hired, consistently resign their positions after a few years for much higher paying opportunities at other local airports.”
The high turnover has become a financial drain on the Airport Enterprise Fund because training costs exceed $100,000 per employee during their first year of employment.
“The most significant responsibilities of this job were heightened with the recent start of scheduled service by Jet Suite X to Burbank and Las Vegas,” Freitas added. “The new service has upgraded Buchanan Field to an active status commercial service airport.”
Storm Damage Tops $9.5 Million
In other action, supervisors voting 4-0 with supervisor John Gioia absent declared costs associated with damage from the January and February storms will exceed $9.5 million, an initial estimate.
The action was necessary to maintain the county’s eligibility for disaster relief funds to cover emergency storm-related repairs to Alhambra Valley Road, Marsh Creek Road, and Morgan Territory Road.Read More
On Saturday morning, March 25, at around 4:40am, Contra Costa CHP was advised of a hit and run traffic collision on northbound I-680 south of Monument Blvd. Upon CHP and emergency personnel arrival it was determined a pedestrian (19-year-old male from Antioch) was struck by three vehicles. The first vehicle to strike the pedestrian left the scene.
The first vehicle to strike the pedestrian was described as possibly being a white Acura Integra. The pedestrian was pronounced deceased at the scene of the collision. On Monday, the victim was identified by the Contra Costa County Coroner as Dyshon Douglas.
In the initial investigation, it appears that the pedestrian was standing in the lanes of northbound I-680 just south of Monument Blvd. It appears as though a white colored sedan collided with the pedestrian and continued northbound on I-680. Immediately after the initial collision the pedestrian was struck by an Audi SUV (driven by a 29-year-old male from Oakley) and a Toyota Corolla (driven by a 22-year-old female from Concord). The drivers of the Audi and Toyota stopped on scene and provided statements to officers.
At this time alcohol or drugs do not appear to be a factor in this collision. This collision is still under investigation and if anyone witnessed this collision or the events leading up to it, please contact Officer Mitchell at Contra Costa CHP (925) 646-4980.Read More
“40 exceptional individuals who have made an impact in the political industry and their communities early in their careers.”
Contra Costa County resident and Republican political consultant Matt Shupe, age 31, was selected by the American Association of Political Consultants for the 2017 class of 40 under 40.
Over 200 political consultants under the age of 40 from throughout the United States were nominated, the most in the history of the AAPC. Shupe is one of 18 Republicans selected for this honor.
“We are delighted to welcome our class of 2017—40 exceptional individuals who have made an impact in the political industry and their communities early in their careers,” said AAPC President Mark Mellman. “We are excited to honor this class at a special event sponsored by Facebook, a fitting partner who exemplifies the same spirit of innovation as our distinguished Award winners.”
“The Pollie Awards & Conference is a key opportunity to connect members of the political community that use Facebook and we are honored to continue our ongoing partnership with the AAPC in sponsoring this ceremony,” said Crystal Patterson, Government & Politics Outreach Manager, Facebook. “We salute the Class of 2017 and look forward to their continued contributions to the industry.”
“It’s an honor and humbling to see my hard work be recognized nationally among my peers,” Shupe said. “I am especially grateful to my clients, mentors, and opponents who have pushed me everyday to do the best I can.”
Shupe owns the San Francisco Bay Area-based Praetorian Public Relations and has served as staff or chief strategist on campaigns in California, Oregon, and Washington State that range from municipal races to President of the United States. Shupe currently serves as the executive director of the California Young Republican Federation, a delegate to the California Republican Party, and as the communications director for Assemblyman Devon Mathis (R-Visalia). In 2016, Shupe worked for the Republican National Committee as a “professional volunteer” and managed the $1 million Facebook advertising budget for the Cleveland convention.
The award was presented to Shupe at this week’s AAPC’s 2017 Annual Pollie Awards & Conference, an event which has been called “the Oscars of political advertising” by Esquire magazine, in Huntington Beach, California.Read More