FaithPrep California is a program of the Rock Academy in partnership with Faith Academics, a Tampa-based education company, and Stride, Inc., the leading provider of digital learning products and services across the country. The full-time program will offer California families a unique school experience that is online, faith-based, and life-focused.
The FaithPrep education model offers a world-class online learning platform that utilizes award-winning curriculum taught by licensed Christian teachers. Students are provided the tools, resources, and support needed for success in a virtual school environment. The program also integrates the Servant Learner™ program that focuses on Christian character development, social, emotional and leadership formation, and life preparation.
One of the distinctive features of FaithPrep California is the options for students to take online dual enrollment courses and earn college credits through the Faith Collegiate program as well as career readiness courses and earn industry certification through the Faith Pathways program.
Students will also be able to attend learning hubs or “Faith Centers” in certain locations around the state. These hubs will promote socialization with other students, offer faith-enrichment activities and provide general program support. The initial Faith Centers in California will be at several of the Rock Church campuses in San Diego. An Information Session will be held at 6:30 pm on August 17th at the main Rock Church campus at 2277 Rosecrans Street in San Diego.
Enrollment is open to all California residents in grades K-12. Tuition is $6,250 for grades K-5, $6,750 for grades 6-8, and $7,250 for grades 9-12. There is a $200 annual enrollment fee. Fees for Faith Centers and Faith Collegiate courses are additional. Families affiliated with the Rock Church get a discount on tuition. FaithPrep California opens August 15 and students begin classes on August 29th.
FaithPrep California is part of a global network of online Christian schools and programs that includes FaithPrep Academy, FaithPrep Academy of Indiana, FaithPrep Florida and FaithPrep Asia. More information about the program and the upcoming Information Session at the Rock Church can be found at www.faithprepcalifornia.com.
Faith Academics is a faith-based learning company that supports and helps operate a network of private online Christian schools and homeschool programs for students in grades K-12 across the globe. More information can be found at www.faithprep.com.Read More
Outlines actions needed now to invest in new sources, transform water management
Without action, state officials believe California’s water supply could diminish by up to 10% by 2040
Introduces former L.A. Mayor Villaraigosa as state’s new infrastructure czar
ANTIOCH – Hotter and drier weather conditions could reduce California’s water supply by up to 10% by the year 2040. To replace and replenish what we will lose to thirstier soils, vegetation, and the atmosphere, Governor Gavin Newsom on Thursday announced in California’s latest actions to increase water supply and adapt to more extreme weather patterns caused by climate change. Click here to read California’s Water Supply Strategy.
Thursday’s announcement at Antioch’s $110 million Brackish Water Desalination project follows $8 billion in state investments over the last two years to help store, recycle, de-salt and conserve the water it will need, generating enough water in the future for more than 8.4 million households by 2040.
The actions, outlined in a strategy document published by the Administration called “California’s Water Supply Strategy, Adapting to a Hotter, Drier Future” calls for investing in new sources of water supply, accelerating projects and modernizing how the state manages water through new technology.
This approach to California’s water supply management recognizes the latest science that indicates the American West is experiencing extreme, sustained drought conditions caused by hotter, drier weather. The warming climate means that a greater share of the rain and snowfall California receives will be absorbed by dry soils, consumed by thirsty plants, and evaporated into the air. This leaves less water to meet the state’s needs.
“The best science tells us that we need to act now to adapt to California’s water future. Extreme weather is a permanent fixture here in the American West and California will adapt to this new reality,” Newsom said. “California is launching an aggressive plan to rebuild the way we source, store and deliver water so our kids and grandkids can continue to call California home in this hotter, drier climate.”
To help make up for the water supplies California could lose over the next two decades, the strategy prioritizes actions to capture, recycle, de-salt and conserve more water. These actions include:
- Creating storage space for up to 4 million acre-feet of water, which will allow us to capitalize on big storms when they do occur and store water for dry periods
- Recycling and reusing at least 800,000 acre-feet of water per year by 2030, enabling better and safer use of wastewater currently discharged to the ocean.
- Freeing up 500,000 acre-feet of water through more efficient water use and conservation, helping make up for water lost due to climate change.
- Making new water available for use by capturing stormwater and desalinating ocean water and salty water in groundwater basins, diversifying supplies and making the most of high flows during storm events.
These actions are identified broadly in the Newsom Administration’s Water Resilience Portfolio – the state’s master plan for water released in 2020 – but they will be expedited given the urgency of climate-driven changes. To advance the infrastructure and policies needed to adapt, the strategy enlists the help of the Legislature to streamline processes so projects can be planned, permitted and built more quickly, while protecting the environment.
Over the last three years, at the urging of the governor, state leaders have earmarked more than $8 billion to modernize water infrastructure and management. The historic three-year, $5.2 billion investment in California water systems enacted in 2021-22 has enabled emergency drought response, improved water conservation to stretch water supplies, and enabled scores of local drought resilience projects. The 2022-23 budget includes an additional $2.8 billion for drought relief to hard-hit communities, water conservation, environmental protection for fish and wildlife and long-term drought resilience projects.
Newsom also introduced former Los Angeles Mayor and Speaker of the Assembly Antonio Villaraigosa as the state’s new infrastructure czar.
“With this influx of federal dollars, we have an incredible opportunity to rebuild California while creating quality jobs, modernizing crucial infrastructure and accelerating our clean transportation progress, benefiting communities up and down the state,” Newsom said. “Antonio has the extensive experience and relationships to deliver on this promise and bring together the many partners who will be key to our success. I look forward to his collaboration with the administration as we build up communities across California.”
Construction on Antioch’s desalination plant is expected to be completed next year, city Public Works Director John Samuelson shared following the governor’s press conference.Read More
NIU Honolulu offers mopeds, kick scooters, motor scooters and e-bikes
2004 Antioch High grad Nathan Bingham inspiring others to “Make Life Electric”
Honolulu, HI — NIU (pronounced “NEW”) Technologies, the world’s leading provider of smart and eco-friendly two-wheelers, officially opened its first flagship store in Kaimuki in Honolulu on the island of Oʻahu in Hawai’i. With gas prices soaring at an average of $5.40 per gallon in the Hawaiʻi islands, Nathan Bingham, owner of Hawaiian Style Rentals & Sales (see related article), proudly partners with NIU Technologies to bring Hawaiʻi a more cost-effective, alternative mode of transportation. Featuring all-new electric mopeds, kick scooters, motor scooters, and e-bikes, NIU provides riders a stylish, more convenient, and economical way to travel in Hawaiʻi.
Initially founded in 2014, NIU currently has retail stores in over 38 countries. With their goal to create a modern mode of transportation that is environmentally friendly, NIU built two-wheeler vehicles designed to perform, backed with an innovative electric system. Bingham partnered with NIU in 2021, as he was fully aware of the need for a dependable, affordable, and eco-friendly alternative to Hawaiʻi’s traditional, gas-operated transportation.
He opened the NIU Honolulu store in February, this year.
“Providing Hawaiʻi customers a modern mode of transportation is our goal. NIU provides a safe, comfortable, efficient, and fun way to get around town,” Bingham said. “The all-electric mopeds, kick scooters, motor scooters, and e-bikes aren’t just beautiful in design, but are very easy to maneuver. They are better for the environment in so many ways, including a significant reduction in noise pollution as NIU products make no sound.”
“We think NIU may inspire many to ‘make life electric,’ leave their cars in the garage, and give the electric lifestyle a go,” he added.
About his Hawaiian Style Rentals business Bingham said, “we expanded into a second location right before the pandemic, but we had to shut it down two months later. Then we reopened in Dec. 2020. Then from the middle of March to the middle of August, because of a rental car shortage, business was unimaginable. We had lines out the door. We then opened our third location in May 2022. We’ve staffed up from nine employees before the pandemic to 25, today.”
“Our rental shops are all in Waikiki for tourism,” he explained. “The NIU store is a few miles away in Honolulu to serve the locals. It’s the flagship store for all the Hawiai’ian islands and the third in the U.S.”
Bingham graduated from Antioch High in 2004. His mom went to Pittsburg High, his wife, Martina (maiden name Cacciaroni) is also from Antioch. Her mother graduated from Antioch High, and her father graduated from Pittsburg High and owned Cacci’s Deli in Pittsburg. Nathan’s grandfather ran the train station in Pittsburg, he shared. They’ve been in East County and Northern California this past weekend and this week with their one-year-old baby boy celebrating his birthday with family.
Nathan’s love for mopeds started at age 18, when he and his family experienced scooter rides around O’ahu while on vacation.
After high school, Bingham went to BYU in Utah for a semester, then transferred to BYU Hawai’i on the North Shore. With the help of his brothers while visiting him during Spring Break, he rented scooters and decided to go into the business and didn’t return to school. Bingham ran the business out of the back of his truck for a few years, delivering and picking up scooters.
“It took me a while to get the business going,” Bingham shared.
About the NIU product line he said, “because it’s such a new product, the electric mopeds, there’s a lot of legislation being pushed. It’s just the way things are going. China went fully electric a few years ago. NIU is selling about a million units a year, internationally. They have a big presence in Asia and Europe.”
NIU products have state-of-the-art features that put them at the forefront of the electric mobility industry. The NIU Energy Lithium Battery is light and dependable, built with an aluminum casing to prevent overheating and a handle to carry on the go. Because they are removable, they make an intelligent security feature. All NIU vehicles are linked to the “NIU Cloud” app, allowing customers to be connected to their electric vehicle 24/7 through their smartphone devices. Customers can check their battery status, view riding history, locate their vehicle, and be alerted of any unauthorized movement of their scooter. Every NIU vehicle has movement sensors that alert the rider if there are unauthorized vibrations detected. This feature is proven to prevent theft, and the GPS tracking system can pinpoint where each vehicle is according to your location. There are “easy” settings on ECO mode for beginning riders, limiting the speed and automatically adjusting the brakes’ sensitivity. For quick journeys, sport mode can be activated while keeping the ride smooth and seamless. According to the user’s preferences, these two modes can be interchanged. All motorbikes, scooters, and mopeds also come with a digital LED display, with lights that output greater luminosity while reducing energy, and an intuitive dashboard.
With the 100% electric design, users of NIU products will be saving money on transportation. For less than two cents per mile, NIU riders pay as low as 47 cents per charge, giving them ranges from 28 miles up to 87 miles depending on the vehicle and battery size. Also, with any electric two-wheel rides, regular maintenance usually performed on gas-powered models is not needed, such as oil changes, air filters, or fuel filters.
Asked about future plans, in what he referred to as ‘the micro-mobility market’, Bingham said, “what’s great about NIU is they’re always coming out with new products, including an electric motorcycle. So, we will continue to build the brand. The goal is to get a presence in all the islands.”
So, the next time you’re in Honolulu, stop by the NIU Honolulu store or one of Bingham’s Hawaiian Style Rentals and say “hello” and be sure to rent one of their electric, two-wheel vehicles.
About NIU Honolulu
NIU (pronounced “NEW”) Technologies, the world’s leading provider of smart and eco-friendly two-wheelers, officially opened its first flagship store in Kaimuki, Oʻahu. Begun in 2021 by owner, Nathan Bingham, NIU Honolulu is Hawaiʻi’s first store that sells electric mopeds, kick scooters, motor scooters, and e-bikes. The modern two-wheeler vehicles are 100% electric and have the option to remove the battery as needed, keeping the NIU scooters safe from theft. Interested guests can book a test ride at the shop, and servicing for all two-wheeled vehicles is completed within the store.
Allen D. Payton contributed to this report.Read More
The senior connected to the program as a delegate of The Congress of Future Medical Leaders
By Allen D. Payton
Brentwood resident Presley Miller, a senior at Freedom High School in Oakley, California recently returned from a two-week summer honors program in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania with FutureDocs Abroad for high school and undergraduate students who aspire to a career in the medical field.
She was selected for the opportunity through her participation as a delegate to The Congress of Future Medical Leaders, a nationally recognized high school honors program of the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists. Students must have a minimum 3.5 GPA to qualify. Miller’s GPA is 4.0. She attended the Congress which was held via Zoom in June 2021.
A separate group of students went to Vietnam during the same weeks. Miller chose Tanzania to apply for “because it was in Africa where I’ve never been.”
FutureDocs Abroad is an honors-only program, of the National Leadership Academies, that allows qualified high school students a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain real-life experience and access what only third and fourth-year medical students can in the United States. The purpose of this internship is to honor, inspire, motivate, and direct the top students in the country, to stay true to their dream and, after the program, to provide a path, plan, and resources to help them reach their goal.
It puts passionate and qualified students into an intense medical environment overseas, where every single day it allows them an opportunity to experience, now what they’ve only been able to imagine.
FutureDocs Abroad was founded on the belief that strong emotional intelligence is the cornerstone of student success and is committed to supporting students in their development. The National Leadership Academies also recognizes that prospective talent must be identified at the earliest possible age and help must be given to these students to acquire the necessary experience and skills to take them to the doorstep of vital careers as leaders and in the fields of medicine and the sciences.
“It was exciting to be able to personally experience international medicine and learn the culture of Tanzania, while creating lifelong friendships and memories!” said Miller. “It was an experience of a lifetime.”
During the program, she joined students from across the U.S. and spent time observing surgeries taking place in the operating room, with the surgeon explaining the procedure as it was being performed. Miller also spent time in the gross anatomy lab with a professor, learning about the anatomy and proper dissection of human cadavers and practicing dissection techniques on animal parts. In addition, she shadowed physicians in the emergency room, clinics, and wards in over a dozen areas of specialty, including pediatrics, oncology, surgery, orthopedics, OB/GYN, and more.
“I got to observe a C-section, cesarean, and watch a baby take his first breath,” Miller shared as her favorite part of the trip. That gave her the desire to focus on “neurosurgery and work in pediatrics.”
One of about 50 students on the trip, she was the only one from Freedom High and encourages other students to participate, as well.
“If you have the opportunity to be a part of The Congress and be able to sign up and be selected to go on this trip, other students should do it. I would do it again, personally,” Miller stated. “If other kids in our area are able to experience this it will be amazing.”
“It took about 30 hours of travel each way,” she shared. “We had to first fly to New York to meet up with the group and fly together from there.”
They landed in Dubai after a 12 or 13-hour flight, followed by a five-hour flight to Tanzania, Miller explained.
“But coming home it was longer due to layovers,” she added.
Asked how she learned about the program she explained, “I got a certificate in the mail from a doctor, Stephen Mitchell, the dean of Georgetown Medical School in May 2021.”
“I was like, ‘what is this?’” Miller said. “It was a selection for the Award of Excellence from the Congress of Future Medical Leaders and an invitation to attend it.”
There’s a fee to participate in the program. “But part of it was covered by a sponsor who paid for everyone,” she shared.
As part of the Congress, Miller did extra course work to earn one college credit. She has also been taking high school courses, more than required, for a degree in medicine.
“I took anatomy and physiology this last year and taking AP biology and chemistry, this year,” Miller shared.
Asked about her college plans, she said, “my goal is to go to UCLA, but I’m open to anything, anywhere for undergraduate school that would be a good connection to medical school, whatever God has planned for me.”
Miller is also a varsity cheerleader at Freedom High and the daughter of Antioch chiropractor, Dr. Lance and Treasure Miller.
Asked if she was inspired by her father being a chiropractor, Miller said, “Yes. Growing up around it and always being in that environment of the medical field.”
She works with her dad and mom in the office during the summer. Miller’s older sister Haley is starting chiropractic college in the fall.
“As a parent, we’re proud of our daughter’s dreams and inspired by her desire to enter the medical field in neurosurgery,” dad, Lance stated. “When she was younger, Presley wanted to find a cure for Alzheimer’s because my Aunt Pam died of it at an early age.”
“We were a little nervous about her going over there in another country for two weeks, but excited at the same time,” he shared. “Thank God for technology because we were able to speak with her every day on WhatsApp and Facetime.”
Presley’s mom, Treasure spoke about the trip and her interest in medicine from early childhood.
“I took her to New York, and we met with the program at JFK airport, then they took her from there to Tanzania. We had to participate in Zoom meetings before she went,” she shared. Presley said they got to New York City two days before and went shopping in Manhattan.
“I’m not sure how they got her information, but I’m sure it was during COVID when the students went online and she was showing her interests in college and they got her information,” Treasure explained.
“She’s always known since she was five that she wanted to be a neurosurgery,” her mom, continued. “I asked, ‘why neurosurgery?’”
“She said ‘you, know, Mom, everyone needs a brain and I’ll never be out of a job,’” Treasure stated.
“I’m extremely proud of her and I know God has a plan for her in her life and has definitely set her up for this,” Presley’s mom, said. “It was very hard for me to let her go to a third world country at 17-years-old. So, I had to really give it to God and pray about it and let her go and trust she would be fine.”
“She was 13 hours ahead,” Treasure stated. “So, when her day was ending my day was starting,” and vice versa,
“I’ve always known since she was very little that God gave her this gift to heal people, kind of like her dad, to heal people with his hands,” she continued. “But she’s going down a different road. They work together. You can’t live without your brain or your spine. She’s a different child, a very old soul, very mature for her age and always has been.”
“She does work hard at it. But she’s very dedicated,” Treasure added.
About The Congress of Future Medical Leaders
High-achieving and deserving high School students are selected to become Delegates of the Congress of Future Medical Leaders by parents, teachers, and other educational avenues. Student Delegates are screened through an application process that includes GPA verification. Academically superior high school students are honored for their dedication, talent, and leadership potential in medicine.
During the Congress, Delegates hear from the world’s leading medical pioneers, groundbreaking researchers, young prodigies who are carving the way for the future of medicine and medical technology, and from patients who have had their lives changed (or saved) by medicine.
The stage is graced by the greatest living minds from different areas of medicine, medical technology and engineering, research, and science—some that Delegates may not know exist! They share insights into who they are, what they do, their successes, failures, and practical advice for Delegates.
For more information, visit www.TheNationalLeadershipAcademies.com or call (888) 986-6563.
District includes Oakley, Discovery Bay, Bethel Island, Knightsen and Byron
Jenny Leilani Callison, a California State AssemblyDistrict 11 (AD11) candidate, is hosting Virtual Town Halls and Meet and Greets to give voters the opportunity to learn about her experience with State Budgets, Policy, and Leadership. Registered as an independent, she is running to unseat incumbent Lori Wilson who was elected, earlier this year to fill the unexpired term of former Assemblyman Jim Frazier who retired last December.
In Contra Costa County AD11 includes Oakley, Discovery Bay, Bethel Island, Knightsen and Byron.
As an Army veteran, and a legislative staffer of the Assembly Military and Veterans Affairs Committee for over a decade, and a Master’s graduate in Public Policy and Administration, Jenny knows she is the best person for the role of California State Assembly in District 11.
A huge concern is that the current politicians and policies in California are not working. Homelessness rates are up, violent crime rates are up, and mental health is a growing concern with too few providers to take on the task. Callison wants to go to Sacramento and solve the issues, not worry about re-election and place the concerns of special interests over the voters and residents of District 11.
“Californians deserve better from their leadership and they deserve to see their tax dollars in action. They don’t need politicians making promises they can’t keep, or even intend to keep, to climb the political ladder. I intend to be a person of action, attacking some of our most immediate vulnerable issues, such as: Veterans Support, Housing, Public Safety, Government Accountability, the Aging Community, and many more.”
Jenny is hosting a Virtual Townhall on Monday, August 8, 2022 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm. Register: https://bit.ly/Townhall_JennyCallison
Contact the campaign at email@example.com with questions, or if you would like to set up a meet and greet. Contributions can be made on the website at www.callison2022.com. Thank you for your support.
Allen D. Payton contributed to this report.Read More
Bonchon is bringing even more crunch to California
Popular U.S.-based brand opens first delivery and carryout-only concept
First 50 guests eat free, plus lion dancers
The wildly popular restaurant, known for crispy, hand-brushed Korean fried chicken, is opening its 27th California location in Brentwood, situated at 5611 Lone Tree Way (near FedEx Office and Home Depot) with hours of operations from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The restaurant will be spearheaded by local entrepreneur Thomas Nyugen.
This Brentwood location also marks the very first one for Bonchon dedicated to delivery and carryout operations. With the new model, it will allow for seamless customer interaction and ease the ordering process for individuals looking to get their favorite Bonchon meal through delivery or on-site pickup.
“Not only am I able to grow with such a globally-loved brand but being able to offer the first delivery and carryout-only location is such an accomplishment,” said Nyugen. “I am eager to serve the Brentwood community Bonchon’s flavorful chicken with our specialty sauce offerings, I am certain that we will quickly become a regular spot for those looking to get a great meal for family, friends or themselves.”
To give residents an opportunity to try Bonchon’s delicious, crunch-worthy wings, a grand opening celebration will take place on Thursday, August 11. The first 50 guests in line will receive five of the brand’s double-fried chicken wings, hand-brushed with their choice of the soy garlic or spicy signature sauce, for free. To add to the grand opening excitement, the Brentwood location will also host lion dancers at 6:00 p.m. on August 11 for all guests to enjoy.
Their menu also has Starters which include pot stickers, shrimp shumai, Takoyaki (ball-shaped calamari), chicken sliders, pork buns, Korean tacos, popcorn shrimp and edamame; Main Dishes which include bulgogi (thinly sliced marinated ribeye, sautéed with mushrooms, scallions, sesame seeds, and onions), japchae (marinated ribeye stir-fry), chicken katsu over rice, tteokbokki (rice cakes with fish cakes), bull dak (spicy chicken and rice cakes), wraps, bibimbap and fried rice dishes, plus udon noodle soups and sesame ginger salads. Their sides include fries, onion rings, kimchi, cole slaw, pickled radish, kimchi coleslaw and, of course, rice; plus they offer a rice cake dessert called mochi. Bonchon | Menu
“Our team could not be more eager to open this new California location with Thomas. His passion for Bonchon and dedication to catering to communities’ needs are just two of the reasons he is a great operator within our franchise system,” said Greg Buchanan, chief administrative officer at Bonchon. “Customer convenience is a top priority for us, so developing our first delivery and carryout location is a huge step for the brand. We know that residents will love having an easy way to get their Bonchon fix!”
Since its inception in Busan, South Korea in 2002, Bonchon’s mission to share Korean comfort food around the world has been more than a success. With 385-plus locations worldwide and more than 115 locations in the U.S., the Korean chicken brand is a global sensation. On top of the cult-favorite fried chicken wings, drumsticks and strips, the brand also provides a variety of flavorful offerings and Pan Asian favorites including japchae, kimchi, Korean tacos and potstickers.
As strategic expansion continues and Bonchon locations sustain consistent sales growth, multi-unit operators have placed a high priority on adding the concept into their portfolios.
About BonchonBonchon is a global restaurant brand known for distinctive Korean double-fried chicken, Asian fusion cuisine, and Korean specialties. Born in Busan, South Korea in 2002, the concept was established in the United States in 2006. Bonchon sets out to have its fans “Crunch Out Loud” by sharing the joy of hand-battered, double-fried, crazy crispy Korean fried chicken with the world.
Bonchon currently currently has more than 386 restaurants across eight countries including Thailand, Philippines, Singapore, Cambodia, Myanmar, Australia, Vietnam and the United States. In the U.S. the chain has more than 114 restaurants with franchise outposts in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Washington D.C., Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.
The brand has earned several accolades – it was recognized by Business Insider as “the gold standard for fried chicken” as well as included in Nation’s Restaurant News 2021 “Top 500 Restaurants”, Fast Casual Magazine’s 2022 “Top 100 Movers & Shakers” and Entrepreneur’s 2022 “Franchise 500”, “Fastest Growing Franchises”, “Top Food Franchise” and “Top Global Franchise” lists.
Allen D. Payton contributed to this report.Read More
Co-hosted by the new East County Republican Assembly
Candidate for Congress Rudy Recile, U.S. Army Major Retired is having a joint monthly meet and greet for constituents of Congressional District 8, Assembly Districts 11 and 15 covering the cities of Concord, Clayton, Pittsburg, Antioch, Oakley and Brentwood with the new East County Republican Assembly. The event will take place the first Thursday of each month between 6:30 and 8:00 p.m.
The inaugural event is Thursday, August 4, 2022, at Harry’s Wine Depot and Tavern, 561 1st Street in Brentwood. Present will be Recile, Brentwood City Council District 4 candidate Holley Bishop-Lopez and other local candidates.
Admission is free!
Rudy says, “Come and have a conversation, a drink and camaraderie with all kinds of people.”
For more information about Recile’s campaign visit www.rudyforuscongress.com.
For San Francisco Metro Area Hospitals and Top 17 in California in U.S. News & World Report’s annual America’s Best Hospitals list
By Ben Drew, Communications Chief, John Muir Health
John Muir Health’s Concord and Walnut Creek Medical Centers earned the designation of Best Regional Hospitals by U.S. News & World Report in its annual list of America’s Best Hospitals. To earn this distinction, each medical center had to earn at least one national ranking in a specialty or at least seven ratings of “high performing” across the procedures and conditions evaluated by U.S. News & World Report.
For the 2022-23 rankings and ratings, U.S. News evaluated more than 4,500 medical centers nationwide in 15 specialties and 20 procedures and conditions. In the 15 specialty areas, 164 hospitals were ranked in at least one specialty. In rankings by state and metro area, U.S. News recognized hospitals as high performing across multiple areas of care.
The Walnut Creek Medical Center is ranked second and the Concord Medical Center third out of 49 hospitals in the San Francisco Metro Area, which includes hospitals in San Francisco, San Mateo, Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin counties. The two medical centers are also ranked among the top 17 in the state out of more than 400 hospitals.
“Our physicians, nurses, clinical and support staff, and volunteers continue to deliver outstanding care and service at a time of great need in our community,” said Jane Willemsen, Executive Vice President and President, Hospital Operations at John Muir Health. “I’m grateful for the resiliency and efforts of our teams as we manage the COVID-19 pandemic and treat and care for patients with a range of injuries and illnesses.”
For the 16th consecutive year, the Walnut Creek Medical Center had at least one service nationally ranked — one of less than 4% of medical centers across the country that achieved a national ranking. The Walnut Creek Medical Center was nationally ranked in Diabetes & Endocrinology (#42), Obstetrics & Gynecology (#36), Orthopedics (#35) and Pulmonology & Lung Surgery (#36). The medical center also ranked as high-performing in Gastroenterology & GI Surgery, Geriatrics, Neurology & Neurosurgery, and Urology. In addition, Walnut Creek was rated as high performing in 14 adult procedures and conditions, including Back Surgery (Spinal Fusion), Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD), Colon Cancer Surgery, Diabetes, Heart Attack, Heart Failure, Hip Fracture, Hip Replacement, Kidney Failure, Knee Replacement, Lung Cancer Surgery, Ovarian Cancer Surgery, Pneumonia, and Stroke.
The Concord Medical Center was ranked as high-performing in five specialties, including Gastroenterology & GI Surgery, Geriatrics, Orthopedics, Pulmonology & Lung Surgery, and Urology. In addition, the Concord Medical Center was rated as high performing in 13 adult procedures and conditions, including Aortic Valve Surgery, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD), Colon Cancer Surgery, Heart Attack, Heart Bypass Surgery, Heart Failure, Hip Replacement, Kidney Failure, Lung Cancer Surgery, Pneumonia, Prostate Cancer Surgery, Stroke, and Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR).
“We never take recognitions like the ones from U.S. News & World Report for granted and are incredibly proud of our teams and the care they provide,” said Russell Rodriguez, M.D, interim Chief Medical Officer at John Muir Health. “These ratings are a direct reflection of and a credit to the talent, skills, empathy and teamwork of our clinicians and staff.”
“For patients considering their options for where to get care, the Best Hospitals rankings are designed to help them and their medical professionals identify hospitals that excel in the kind of care they may need,” said Ben Harder, chief of health analysis and managing editor at U.S. News. “The new cancer ratings provide patients facing surgery for prostate cancer or gynecological cancer with previously unavailable information to assist them in making a critical health care decision.”
Between the two medical centers, John Muir Health has 798 licensed beds. The Walnut Creek Medical Center also serves as the designated trauma center for Contra Costa County. In addition, the health system offers a network of more than 1,000 primary care and specialty physicians to care for patients.
The complete rankings and methodology are available at Best Hospitals.
To learn more about John Muir Health’s award-winning programs and services, visit: www.johnmuirhealth.com.Read More
Sacramento – On Wednesday, July 27, 2022, the California State Board of Equalization (BOE) held the first of at least three public Property Tax Abatement Workgroup meetings. The Board received presentations from policy experts and stakeholders on the development of new housing, focusing on how to best address the need to build 2.5 million new housing units to address California’s housing gap, including how to provide new housing opportunities for the “missing middle.” The workgroup consists of Board Chair Malia M. Cohen, who represents District 2 and District 3 Board Member Antonio Vazquez.
“As Chair of the Board of Equalization, which administers California’s $85 billion property tax system, I am deeply encouraged by today’s discussion with housing policy experts,” said Chair Malia M. Cohen. “The presentations of these experts both highlighted the reality of our housing crisis, associated equity issues, and the opportunity to address the development of new housing through creative and innovative solutions.”
“Today’s meeting focused on property tax abatements as a tool to incentivize new housing construction and increase the inventory of affordable housing. Property tax abatements have been used before, particularly in New York City, to build tens of thousands of new housing units to address the housing needs of the ‘missing middle’. It makes sense to consider whether similar property tax abatement strategies could work in California,” Cohen concluded.
In upcoming meetings of the Property Tax Abatement Workgroup, the BOE will examine strategies to ensure that revenue for schools and local governments are protected under any property tax abatement programs. The BOE will also explore how local government, labor, businesses, and developers can work collaboratively to build new housing under such abatement programs.
The BOE will hold additional meetings of the Property Tax Abatement Workgroup at the Board’s upcoming August 31st and September 28th board meetings. At the conclusion of the BOE’s Property Tax Abatement Workgroup, the Board will issue a report.
The agenda of the July 27, 2022 meeting of the Property Tax Abatement Workgroup can be found at this link: https://www.boe.ca.gov/meetings/pdf/2022/072622-PAN-Jul.pdf
As the BOE Board Member for District 2 Cohen represents nearly 10 million constituents residing in 23 counties in Northern and Central California, extending from Del Norte County in the north to Santa Barbara County in the south, including Contra Costa County. She is the youngest Constitutional Officer serving in California and is the first African American woman to be elected as chair of the Board of Equalization in its 141-year history.
The Board of Equalization is California’s statewide elected tax board. Its five members include four members elected in districts, and the State Controller. Under its constitutional mandate, the BOE oversees the assessment practices of the state’s 58 county assessors, who are charged with establishing values for approximately 13.6 million assessments each year. In addition, the BOE assesses the property of regulated railroads and specific public utilities and is responsible for the alcoholic beverage tax and tax on insurers.
Note: This news release may discuss complex tax laws and concepts. It may not address every situation and is not considered written advice. Changes in law or regulations may have occurred since the time this news release was written. If there is a conflict between the text of this news release and the law, decisions will be based upon the law and not this news release.Read More
Deeply discounted; by leaving the car at home, Oakland A’s and San Francisco Giant’s fans can relax, save cash and enjoy the game!
By David Lipari, San Joaquin Joint Powers Authority
Contra Costa residents will be able to take a deeply discounted special event train to the “Battle of the Bay” baseball game between the Oakland Athletics and San Francisco Giants on Sunday, August 7th.
Amtrak San Joaquins tickets to the Oakland Coliseum (OAC) will include an automatically applied 50% discount. Travelers can also apply additional discounts, including the Disabled Rider Discount, Veteran & Active Military Discounts, Student Discount, and others available on the Amtrak San Joaquins promotions page.
Amtrak San Joaquins has modified its route and schedule for the Sunday, August 7th Battle of the Bay game between the Oakland Athletics and the San Francisco Giants, scheduled to begin at 1:07 pm. Train 711 has been modified to travel all the way to the Oakland Coliseum, past its usual stop at Jack London Square and is scheduled to arrive at 10:39 am. After the game, Amtrak Train 718 will depart directly from the Oakland Coliseum at 5:25 pm.
“Amtrak San Joaquins riders utilize our service for a variety of transportation purposes. One of these purposes is to travel to fun, family-oriented events such as the Battle of the Bay,” said David Lipari, San Joaquin Joint Powers Authority marketing manager. “With the price of gas so high, people are looking for opportunities to travel, save cash, and still have a fun and memorable experience. We are happy to be able to provide that with our Battle of the Bay special train.”
For an additional fee of only $10, travelers aboard the 711 train can purchase the Battle of the Bay food bundle, which includes a hotdog and 12oz. beer of any choice, available for pickup in the Café Car.
Special Event Train will serve the following counties:
Contra Costa, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Merced, Madera, Fresno, Kings and Kern
Date: Sunday, August 7, 2022
For passengers interested in monitoring capacity levels for trains and buses, travelers can utilize Amtrak’s capacity indicator system. This online tool allows customers to see in real-time the percentage of seats sold for each trip option. This gives customers the opportunity to book a train that is less crowded if they choose or cancel the reservation if needed.
All discounts can be accessed at amtraksanjoaquins.com/promotions/. Passengers are encouraged to purchase tickets prior to boarding at stations, online at AmtrakSanJoaquins.com, on the Amtrak app, or at a station kiosk.
About the San Joaquin Joint Powers Authority (SJJPA) Since July 2015, SJJPA has been responsible for the management and administration of Amtrak San Joaquins. SJJPA is governed by Board Members representing each of the ten (10) Member Agencies along the 365-mile San Joaquins Corridor. For more information on SJJPA see www.sjjpa.com.
Amtrak San Joaquins is Amtrak’s 6th busiest route with 18 train stations throughout the Central Valley and Bay Area, providing a safe, comfortable and reliable way to travel throughout California. Amtrak San Joaquins is currently running six daily round-trips. In addition to the train service, Amtrak San Joaquins Thruway buses provide connecting service to 135 destinations in California and Nevada including Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, San Diego, Napa Valley, Las Vegas and Reno.Read More