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Roosevelt Kennedy Dinner, Local Issues Articles, and the Placer Victory Fund.
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March 2015 Newsletter
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Local Fire Agencies Need Additional Funding
By Greg Harnage, Associate Member of PCDCC

When it comes to public safety, Placer County is one of the best in my opinion. The Sheriff and local Police Departments help protect and keep our neighborhoods and natural treasures safe. Our local fire departments serve and protect to do the same exact thing. But why is it that many of our fire agencies within Placer County are struggling? It all has to do with how the various agencies are funded. As development, population, operational costs and the demand of service grows within the fire agencies, so should the money. In some jurisdictions that is the case the Roseville Fire Department is a good example of this in my experience. As the city developed westward, the city needed to increase the fire department funding to cover the costs of new stations, improved equipment etc. This unfortunately is not the case for many of our rural smaller fire agencies along the I-80 corridor.
 
Communities like Penryn, Newcastle, Loomis and Foresthill are served by fire agencies focusing on those specific communities whereas communities like Granite Bay, Meadow Vista and Weimar are served by larger fire districts (South Placer and Placer Hills, respectively). These agencies are much smaller than the larger city districts like Rocklin, Roseville and Lincoln where the cities are able to generate enough revenue to fund their fire agencies. The smaller districts rely more heavily on county tax dollars to provide the necessary funding. This is where Proposition 172 comes into play. Prop 172 has been around since 1993 and uses a half-cent from sales tax to fund public safety needs within a county (fire, police, sheriff, etc.). In Placer County, the vast majority of the funding received from Prop 172 goes to the Sheriff’s Department leaving minimal amounts left to fund other critical services like the fire departments.
 
According to a recent Loomis News article, Chris Reams who is the President of the Foresthill Fire Protection District Board of Directors stated, “Three million would sustain all of us. Our survival is dependent on this money. Otherwise we aren’t going to be here very long.” The three million dollar figures comes from estimates by Chief Ian Gow of the Placer Hills Fire District and Mr. Reams. That figure would need to be an annual increase in funding between the six departments (Penryn, Newcastle, Loomis, South Placer, Foresthill, and Placer Hills) struggling to meet their financial requirements. We must encourage our Board of Supervisors to come up with a viable plan to ensure these fire agencies do not suffer any more than they have.
 
For further information and the entire Loomis News article, please visit the following link: http://www.theloomisnews.com/article/2/05/15/area-fire-districts-funding-outlook-bleak

**The views expressed by the interviewer or the interviewee does not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Placer County Democratic Party.**
Is There a Costco in Auburn???
By Parry Lustgarten, Sun City Roseville Democrats

On February 11, 2015 The Auburn Journal published an article that Costco has terminated its option to develop a store on a 16-acre North Auburn parcel owned by Placer County.  For almost two years, Costco has been working with the county on land for a 148,000 square foot warehouse store on First Street in the Placer County Government Center. The letter of termination from Costco did not comment on the reasons for terminating its option, but DeDe Cordell, County Director of Communications for Placer County stated “…because it didn’t say otherwise, we’re optimistic they’re pursuing construction of a store in Placer County but we don’t know what that entails.”  Ms. Cordell added that the letter also leaves open the question of why Costco terminated the option.
 
The Costco debate has raged for almost two years, with supporters welcoming a store expected to increase shopping options and warehouse–store prices, approximately 170 new jobs, and potential new revenues to the County of over $85 million over 10 years.  Opponents of the proposed project, including Auburn’s City Council and The Highway 49 Corridor Association, which filed suit against the county, and have taken the position that the process was at fault for the termination and not the project itself.   They have also concluded their legal action played a key role in Costco’s termination of negotiations because the Washington State based company didn’t want to become embroiled in a county-city dialogue that could have prolonged negotiations, pushed construction start dates for building, and increased legal fees while the suit worked its way through the process. Opponents also cited increased traffic to Highway 49, an already congested roadway, yet-to-be scheduled environmental and traffic studies, demolition of historically important buildings, changes to Auburn’s “small, historical foothills town” atmosphere, and severe negative impact on local small businesses.
 
In Costco’s termination letter sent to county Facility Services Director Mary Dietrich, they stated that not only were they terminating their option, the county is now required as part of the agreement to pay Costco $530,000 within 30 days.  This is the amount held from Costco for an Auburn Multipurpose Senior Center from the proposed site.  The senior center was to be paid the $530,000 by Costco if the store moved ahead.  Placer County would now have to pay it, to help defray the center’s moving expenditures.  Several tenants – including the senior center – were to be out of the Costco site by June 30.  That would have allowed demolition of several World War II era buildings so Costco could have started construction by March 1, 2016.
 
Placer County Democratic Central Committee (PCDCC) has been considering proposing a Resolution on this matter. Subsequently, Costco’s termination letter has put the proposal of a PCDCC Resolution on “hold” until such time as the negotiations between Costco, Placer County, and the City of Auburn resume. For the entire Auburn Journal article please visit the following link: http://www.auburnjournal.com/article/2/10/15/costco-terminates-option-north-auburn-store-site

**The views expressed by the interviewer or the interviewee does not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the Placer County Democratic Party.**
Placer Victory Fund!!!



Thank you for your interest in supporting the Placer County Democratic Party “Placer Victory Fund”. You may be asking what the Placer Victory Fund (PVF) is and what the money will be used for. The PVF will be utilized to advance Democratic values in Placer County, purchase materials for distribution, assist future candidates, secure a headquarters for the 2016 election, and so much more. Every dollar that is received will be spent on focusing on the future for Placer County.

There are four levels of contributions in our “True Blue” system. The Placer Victory Fund will only be successful if individuals like you are able to make monthly donations at the values indicated below. We understand that you may not be able to make monthly contributions, but any contribution is better than no contribution.

True Blue Donor: $5.00

True Blue Friend: $10.00

True Blue Supporter: $20.00

True Blue Advocate: $50.00

To contribute please click on the following link: https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/placervictory

If you would like to pay by check please mail the check, made out to Placer County Democratic Party to:

Placer County Democratic Party
Attn.: Placer Victory Fund
P.O. Box 423
Roseville, CA 95678


FPPC #: 1244471
FEC #: C00433318

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