www.thepress.net Your Hometown Website
ward Winning News al A pa
YOUR HOMETOWN WEEKLY NEWSPAPER
Vol. 13, No. 26
July 1, 2011
Interchange gets green light by Justin Lafferty Staff Writer
Though Highway 4 Bypass officials were hoping for $33 million from the state to build an interchange at Sand Creek Road, they’re pleased with the $25 million in Corridor Mobility Improvement Account money they were able to take home for the project. As members of the Highway 4 Bypass Authority and other local officials headed down to a California Department of Transportation meeting in Long Beach recently, they were optimistic that they could secure $33 million to turn the intersection at Sand Creek Road in Brentwood into a gridlockeliminating interchange similar to those at Laurel Road and Lone Tree Way. The intersection of the Bypass and Sand Creek Road is currently managed by
Kernels of wisdom Press file photo
The Highway 4 Bypass has received a $25 boost in state funding, enough to turn the Sand Creek Road intersection, above, into an interchange. traffic signals. The project was at the top of the list of many Northern California highway improvements under consideration for state
funds at that meeting. However, according to Oakley Mayor Jim Frazier, CalTrans decided to spread the wealth more evenly. Despite the lower sum, of-
ficials are excited to begin work and soon clear up a major bottleneck in East County. They see Bypass page 22A
We’re looking for recipes incorporating corn that’ll amaze the judges and amass the prizes. Page 3A
Strikefest wows crowds
Grand Jury lauds city’s performance by Rick Lemyre Staff Writer
A Contra Costa County Grand Jury has praised the City of Brentwood for its fiscal management during the recession, suggesting other cities in the county consider the city’s approach. In a report entitled “Brentwood – a city addressing reality,” issued last week, the grand jury looked the financial difficulties facing all 19 of the county’s cities. All had taken steps to deal with the crisis, the report said, but it singled out four programs in Brentwood as worthy of emulation. Fiscal management and planning Brentwood’s use of a 10year fiscal planning model al-
“ Praise from grand juries is rare, so that makes this report extremely gratifying.
” City Manager Donna Landeros
lows officials to plug in various “what if ” scenarios that help forecast the impact down the road of decisions made now. The city has also maintained 30 percent of its annual budget in reserve, the report said, as well as Emergency Preparedness and Budget Stabilization funds to help weather the storm. Addressing revenue and expense imbalance Once the state’s fourth-fastest-growing city, Brentwood in 2005 implemented a plan to reduce its reliance on developer
www.thepress.net Your Hometown Website
fees over the next decade. As the recession worsened, the plan was accelerated to three years, one result being the 84-percent reduction in the number of employees involved in its capital improvement program – from 17 to three. A fee deferral program to encourage continued residential and commercial development, staff reductions in all departments except Code Enforcement and the police department, and continuing cost-effective maintenance on vehicles, equipment
Touch of class
go to news/WebExtras! Meet Liberty High School’s best and brightest this spring.
and computers were also noted in the report. Performance measurement The enacment in 2008 of Brentwood’s Police Benchmark Reporting system, which charts the PD’s performance in key areas such as response times and workload, has helped the force address areas of possible concern proactively, the report said. The system last year helped improve performance to levels above the national average in four areas: arson, burglary, theft and auto theft, partly through directed-enforcement efforts and community-awareness campaigns. Personnel costs/pension reform Costs associated with pensions, retiree medical coverage
The din of plummeting pins filled Harvest Park as a PBA Senior tourney came to a spectacular climax. Page 17A Business ............................... 5B Calendar ............................ 19B Classifieds ......................... 13B East County Life ................ 1B Entertainment ................... 9B Food .................................... 10B Health & Beauty ................ 6B Milestones .......................... 8B Opinion ..............................14A Sports .................................17A ravemotionpictures Brentwood 14 +
see Grand Jury page 22A
Big Break buildout go to news/press releases
Construction will soon begin on an interpretive center at Big Break in Oakley.
FOR MOVIE TIMES SEE PAGE 5A
Vets venerated go to multimedia/videos
Veterans’ service and sacrifices were honored at an event in Cortona Park.
JULY 1, 2011
BRENTWOOD CHAMBER OF COMMERCE PRESENTS
Follow us on
BRENTWOOD BLVD./ SAND CREEK RD. PRE-SAL
AVAEYILâ€™SASBTOLREES NOW OD CAL RAL
@ LO HE BRENTWO AND T BER OFFICE CHAM
FRIDAY NIGHT FIREWORKS
LIVE MUSIC â€¢ CARNIVAL Enjoy Kids Fun Zone, Corn Activities, Car Show, Arts & Crafts, And The Largest Ferris Wheel On The West Coast! Plus: Great Food, Local Wines, Microbrews, And Plenty Of Locally Grown Corn!
21,000 SQ.FT. OF SHADE & PLENTY OF ONSITE PARKING! SPECIAL MUSICAL GUESTS: AC/DSHE, GREAT WHITE, PUBLIC EYE & CREAM OF CLAPTON &RI PM TO PM s 3AT AM TO PM s 3UN AM TO PM 'ENERAL !DMISSION s 9OUTH 3ENIORS s +IDS AND UNDER &2%% s /NSITE 0ARKING