Review Category : City News

News from around the world: March 12, 2014

Violence in Ukraine The capital of Ukraine is experiencing the most violence since the former Soviet Union became independent 23 years ago.The turmoil the Ukranian government has been experiencing during the past few weeks is the product of persistent social tension and political unrest. The explicit protests and demonstrations are due to the actions of President Viktor Yanukovych rejecting a geopolitical trade deal with Europe, which sealed a $15 billion bailout from Russia. Thousands of citizens flocked to the street to demonstrate against the obvious corruption and police brutality. College Board restructures SAT The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) that high school students must take to get into college will be overhauled and changed drastically. Criticism from parents, colleges and students saying that the exam does not focus on core academic skills urged the College Board to fundamentally restructure the test.The College Board is ending the old penalty for guessing wrongly, making the essay optional and scrapping vague and obscure vocabulary words in the reading section of the exam. David Coleman,... ...

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AB 2160 seeks to simplify financial aid process for incoming college students

On Feb. 25, California State Representative Phil Ting announced AB 2160, a bill that would require all high schools in California to electronically submit GPA verification of all graduating high school seniors to the California Student Aid Commission. “We want to do everything possible to streamline that process so students who are graduating from high school and entering into a higher education institution can get access to the funding they deserve,” Ting said. While some high schools in California automatically submit GPA verification electronically, those that don’t require students to request GPA submissions themselves. Statewide in 2012, there was a FAFSA completion rate of 54 percent among graduating high school seniors, and a Cal Grant completion rate of 50 percent, according to Orville Jackson, senior research analyst at Education Trust. In 2013, those numbers went up to 61 percent for FAFSA, and 58 percent for Cal Grants. This increase can be attributed in part to the California Student Aid Commission’s program, WebGrants, which allows students to submit their GPA verification... ...

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California authorities support relaxed ban on marijuana

Administration for California is backing Senate Bill (SB) 1262, which would license medical marijuana dispensaries and cultivators while ensuring that healthcare providers are regulated in their medicinal marijuana recommendations. This is the first marijuana bill to be supported by police and state legislation. SB 1262 was introduced by State Senator Lou Correa on Feb. 21, and supported by the California Police Chiefs Association in a joint effort with the League of California Cities. Additionally, nine law enforcement associations and over 5,000 churches in California are amenable to passing this piece of legislation. “This bill is an example of California coming late to the game trying to marry a currently illegal marijuana industry to a changing public attitude,” said Allen St. Pierre, executive director for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). “It would be presumed that California would have allowed a regulatory scheme for medical marijuana 10 years ago”. Currently, the standing laws in California regarding marijuana and medical marijuana usage are outlined in the Health and... ...

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Davis Food Co-op General Manager resigns for unknown reasons

General manager of the Davis Food Co-op, Eric Stromberg, was asked to resign by the board of directors and will take a permanent leave starting March 22. This will end Stromberg’s 14 years of employment at the Davis Food Co-op. “[The Board of Directors for the Davis Food Co-Op] decided to exercise an option under the General Manager contract for separation without cause,” said a memo issued to the Davis Food Co-op members and shoppers by Stacie Frerichs, board president and the entire Davis Food Co-op Board of Directors. The board made this decision following closed meetings. “[This was a] very deliberate process and [we] thoroughly considered all information available to [them] before making a decision. We feel our decision was made in the best interest of … the Co-op members … However, for legal reasons, we cannot discuss personnel matters publicly,” Frerichs said. The management team at the Davis Food Co-op is expecting a smooth transition according to Julie Cross, marketing and education director for the Davis Food Co-op.... ...

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Gov. Brown signs emergency drought legislation

Gov. Jerry Brown signed emergency drought legislation on March 1. The bill allocated $687.4 million to aid workers with food and housing that have been directly impacted by the drought and technologies that will assist communities in using less water. Additionally, it will fund security emergency drinking water supplies for drought-impacted communities, according to a press release from Gov. Brown’s office. Many of the proposals included in the package were proposed earlier this year in Gov. Brown’s budget proposal; however, they are now being expedited due to the dire need of California’s water situation. “These targeted responses will have tangible results, but the solution requires more than legislation and investment. Every Californian needs to be a part of the solution, and we strongly urge every person in our state to take action to conserve water,” California State Assembly Speaker John A. Perez said. One piece of the bill that California State Representative John Garamendi highlighted as particularly important was the funding for farmers in the Sacramento region to update their... ...

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Policebriefs: March 12, 2014

Wednesday 3/5 Firebolt A car was driving down Faro Drive dropping fireworks out the window into the middle of the roadway. Friday 3/7 Trash-talking On Anderson Road, several people were hitting the garbage cans in front of the pool yelling “F you” over and over again. Throwing a party Several loud subjects on the balcony of the apartments above the Olive Drive Market were dropping things on people as they walked by. Saturday 3/8 Know-it-all On Sycamore Lane, someone received a phone call and text saying,“I know where you are.” Sunday 3/9 Cut to the chase Someone on L Street was approached by a guy who accused the reporter of stealing a bike, then stated he wanted to cut the reporter up and pulled out a knife. Monday 3/10 Ball was in their court Someone reported two juniors at the tennis court on J Street for horsing around and making too much noise for the reporter to tolerate. Police briefs are compiled from the City of Davis daily crime bulletins.... ...

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Downtown desserts, delicacies hope to draw customers

Downtown Davis recently added Sweet & Shavery, Bambu Drinks and Desserts and Tako Korean BBQ to the restaurant scene. Sweet & Shavery, located at 210 E St., had its grand opening on March 8 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. The small store specializes in sweets, its menu consisting of Italian shaved ice, frozen custard and crepes. Co-owners and UC Davis graduates Lindsay Phan and Brian Nuss, now a graduate student at UC Davis, believed the sweet treat that is more popular on the East Coast would do well in Davis. “I think it is a little different since we cater to vegans and vegetarians because we have shaved ice … my favorite flavor is the cactus cooler parfait and the fruitier [desserts],” Phan said. At the grand opening they offered free samples of the shaved-ice-parfait dessert and 50 percent off crepes to draw in new customers. Due to the unanticipated high demand, they had to close early on March 9 at 6 p.m. rather than the usual 10 p.m.... ...

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UC Davis to compete in 2015 Solar Decathlon

In February 2014, UC Davis was chosen by the Department of Energy to build a solar-powered home to compete in a Solar Decathlon in UC Irvine during October 2015. UC Davis was chosen as one of the 20 universities to compete in the competition. The competition is also featuring other top research universities such as Stanford, Yale and nearby rival school, Sacramento State. “We don’t know exactly how the Department of Energy made its final selections. They have a very rigorous proposal process,” said Frank Loge, principal investigator for the team and a professor in the Department of Environmental and Civil Engineering. “We … pulled in a remarkable team of interested students and faculty from across many disciplines at UC Davis to prepare a proposal … and we told an interesting story while we did it.” Although the team was confident, they were as surprised as anyone when they heard the news. Loge even admitted that the team got started late in the proposal process. The team was able to... ...

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News in Brief: Delayed Fifth Street construction to be completed early May

City of Davis officials said that the Fifth Street construction will be completed as soon as early May 2014. The project was initially projected to be completed January 2014, but has experienced a few setbacks. Vanguard Construction Services of Livermore began working in early October 2013 with the intention to make biking and pedestrian activity along Fifth Street safer. They will be adding bike lanes between A and L streets. They will also be adding a dual left-turn lane and turn pockets, upgrading and adding access ramps in compliance with the Americans Disabilities Act and adding new traffic lights and pedestrian activated traffic lights at the C and J street intersections. To date, they have completed much of the work, said Roxanne Namazi, City of Davis senior civil engineer in the Public Works Department.  “The majority of the concrete flatwork including upgrading the access ramps and sidewalks — adjacent to the ramps — is completed.  Foundations for the signal poles, pedestrian signals and street lights have been poured. The conduits... ...

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Yolo County conducts public health assessments

Over the past few months, Healthy Yolo, a program started by the Yolo County Health Department to get the community more involved in addressing public health concerns, conducted four community assessments. The assessments were done in efforts to understand the greatest public health needs of Yolo County. They include the Community Themes and Strengths Assessment, the Community Health Status Assessment, the Local Public Health Assessment, and most recently, the Forces of Change Assessment. Mark Harlan, coordinator of the Yolo County Health Program, set up and facilitated the two community meetings where the four assessments were conducted. The project kickoff was July 14, 2013. “It’s a community-driven project to improve the health and well-being of Yolo County residents. Forces of Change identifies those issues that may affect the project … we wanted to be aware of things to come so that we wouldn’t be blindsided, so that we could avoid pitfalls,” Harlan said. The assessments were conducted through work sessions, surveys and different community outreach. According to Harlan, the most recent... ...

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Davis Farmers Market celebrates 23rd annual National Pig Day

Every year, Randii MacNear dresses as Ms. Piggy (not the copyrighted ‘Miss Piggy’) on Pig Day at the Davis Farmers Market to “get her pig on.” MacNear is the Davis Farmers Market manager and executive director of Pig Day, an annual Davis tradition. The City of Davis celebrated its 23rd annual Pig Day on March 1. “This year, it’s very special that we will be able to have Pig Day on the actual National Pig Day (March 1),” MacNear said. “We are the only farmer’s market in the state of California that does something like this, maybe the only one in the world.” National Pig Day was started in 1972 by two sisters from the midwest — Ellen Stanley and Mary Lynne Rave. According to Rave, the holiday was founded “to accord the pig its rightful, though generally unrecognized, place as one of man’s most intellectual and domesticated animals.” According to Professor Donald Broom of the Cambridge University Veterinary School, pigs have the cognitive ability to be quite sophisticated. Even... ...

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Public forum discusses downtown drunkenness

On Feb. 26, the Downtown Davis Business Association held a public forum to discuss downtown nightlife and some of its issues, most of which are alcohol-related. Community members, ASUCD representatives, business owners and the Davis Police Department attended the meeting. The meeting was initiated by Judith MacBrine, a facilitator of the neighborhood court. “The focus of neighborhood court is restorative as opposed to punitive,” MacBrine said during her presentation. The issue at hand, as outlined by MacBrine, is downtown alcohol abuse and misuse, which takes the form of public drunkenness, public urination, battery and possession of an open container of alcohol. Some of the concerns listed by the participants of the forum included the distribution of alcohol, the increase of signage for restrooms, college parties in residential areas, deeper mental health issues and property damage. “What’s really nice about Davis is that all of the bar scene is really contained within a few blocks, so if any rowdiness is occurring it would be within small parameters,” said Allison Kopas, a... ...

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Police Briefs: March 6, 2014

Thursday 2/27 A turn of the screw Someone on Bombadil Lane tried to cancel movers for showing up over 50 minutes late. The mover demanded a cancellation fee, and when the reporter refused to pay, he dismantled her doorbell and put a screwdriver through the door. Power play On Ninth Street, a woman was walking around saying she was with PG&E, asking to look at people’s bills and social security information. Friday 2/28 Dare you to move On Miller Drive, an unknown female was dancing on someone’s front lawn. Let it go A naked guy was shouting obscenities on Anderson Road. Saturday 3/1 Driven out of his mind On M Street, a known male was trying to run someone over. Felt cooped up Three chickens wandered into someone’s front yard on Oak Street. Police briefs are compiled from the City of Davis daily crime bulletins. Contact EINAT GILBOA at city@theaggie.org. ...

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News in Brief: Daniel Marsh’s confession ruled admissible

On Feb. 28, Yolo County Superior Court Judge David Reed deemed Daniel Marsh’s confessions admissible to be used during his April 14 trial. Marsh, 16, stabbed Oliver “Chip” Northup, 87, and his wife Claudia Maupin, 76, in their condominium on Cowell Boulevard on April 14, 2013. On June 17, 2013, Marsh spoke with officers after being arrested, waiving his right to remain silent. Marsh’s defendants made various claims of why Marsh’s June 17 confession should be kept out of court, which included the interview tactics that were used by officers, Marsh’s history of mental health problems, his age and the circumstances surrounding his arrest. On the day of Marsh’s arrest, Officer Eddie Ellsworth of the Davis Police, who had encountered Marsh before, told Marsh that he needed to make plans for a youth diversion program related to Marsh’s May arrest for possessing a knife on the campus of Davis High. Ellsworth testified that Marsh willingly went to the police station with him, even though he was told that he didn’t... ...

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Police Briefs: Feb. 27, 2014

Wednesday 2/19 Tough (fortune) cookie Someone on Arthur Street called 911 to say, “There will be violence.” Wishy-washy An unknown subject is continually putting up someone’s windshield wipers during the day on Wintun Place. Saturday 2/22 Press charges On Vassar Drive, someone’s roommate invited three people into the residence who claimed to be selling magazines, but kept asking questions about how many people lived in the residence and how much things cost. Tricks are for kids A group of kids kept prank-calling a business on L Street, making threats to come and kill everyone. Up to scratch Someone was trying to park on Third Street and accidentally scratched someone’s car. When he went to get a pen and paper to leave a note the vehicle was gone, so he wanted to leave his information. Monday 2/24 Face the consequences On Denison Drive, a known subject has been hacking the reporter’s Facebook account, posting and altering things without the reporter’s permission. ...

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