City Express

Signs go up to help navigate arena construction

Sign at 4th and K Street.

Above is a sign at 4th and K Street.

Don’t let the arena construction stand in the way of shopping and dining downtown and in Old Sacramento. Just follow the signs.

We want to make getting around on foot as easy as possible through fall of 2016 when the arena is completed. New signs are up at four locations to guide pedestrians around the construction site. The arena webpage also includes a map that can be read on a cell phone after dark.

Public invited to learn more about City budget and participate in this fiscal year’s process

The following is the tentative schedule for budget-related workshops and council meetings, culminating in the adoption of the fiscal year 2015/16 operating and capital improvement project budgets on June 9. Most meetings will take place in the City Hall Council Chambers,  915 I Street.


Saturday, Feb. 21, 10a.m., Mayor’s Community Workshop (Neighborhood Association Presidents) on Budget Priorities

Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2 p.m., City Council Workshop (1) Expenditure, (2) Labor Cost Model, (3) Fleet, (4) Risk, (5) Debt, (6) Other Post-Employment Benefits (OPEB), (7) Capital Improvement Program

Tuesday, March 3, 1:30 – 2:30 p.m., Budget and Audit Committee City Auditor Report

Tuesday, March 3, 2:30 – 4:30 p.m., City Council Workshop (1) Operational Review, (2) City programs/services by department, (3) Enterprise Funds, (4) Measure U, (5) Other funds (4th R, START, etc.)

Friday, March 6, 6p.m., Mayor Presents Budget Priorities to Council in Friday Memo

Tuesday, March 10, 6p.m., City Council Mayor and Council Discuss and Develop City Budget Priorities

Tuesday, March 17, 6 p.m., City Council Mayor and Council Approve Budget Priorities and Present to City Manager

Tuesday, April 7, 2 p.m., Budget and Audit Committee (1) Master Fee Schedule, (2) Citywide Policies, (3) Other Post-Employment Benefits (OPEB), (4) Pensions, (5) Risk

Friday, April 24, FY2015/16 Proposed Budget Released

Tuesday, May, 5, 2 p.m., Budget and Audit Committee (1) FY2015/16 Budget Overview

Tuesday, May 12, 6 p.m., City Council (1) Budget Introduction: Forecast & Assumptions, (2) FY2015/16 Proposed Budget for: Mayor and City Council, Charter Offices, Community Development, Convention and Cultural Services, Economic Development, Finance, General Services, Human Resources, Information Technology, Public Works, Utilities, Citywide and Community Support, (3) Citywide Fees and Charges Update

Tuesday, May 19, 2 p.m., City Council (1)2015-2020 Capital Improvement Program (CIP),  (2) FY2014/15 Measure U Update:  Parks and Recreation

                   6 p.m. City Council  FY2014/15 Measure U Update: Fire, Police

Tuesday, June 2, 2 p.m., Budget and Audit Committee Budget and Audit Committee Recommendation on Proposed Budget

Tuesday, June 9, 6 p.m., City Council Adoption of the FY2015/16 Operating and CIP

Note: Budget & Audit Committee Meetings are scheduled for one hour; Council Workshops are scheduled for two hours. Meetings times are subject to change.

Front Street Animal Shelter awarded $132,500 Lifesaving Grant


The City of Sacramento’s Front Street Animal Shelter was recently awarded a Lifesaving Grant from the Petco Foundation to support continued community outreach and adoption events in the Sacramento area.

Each year, the Petco Foundation invests millions in nonprofit animal welfare organizations across the country that work to make the most significant lifesaving impact possible for animals in their communities.  The City of Sacramento’s Front Street Animal Shelter receives approximately 10,000 stray, lost and unwanted animals annually. With only 25% of the animals being reclaimed by their rightful owners, finding new, suitable homes is a top priority.

Over the past three years the Front Street Shelter has become increasingly successful in decreasing the euthanasia rate.  A large portion of this success can be credited to high levels of community involvement and offsite adoption events. By showcasing animals in places other than the shelter, Front Street reached a larger number of adopters. In 2014, Front Street animals participated in more than 120 community events, ranging from traditional pet stores, wineries, festivals, parades and even the Sacramento Ballet.

The generous Petco Foundation grant will provide funding for transportation, staff, supplies and associated costs of preparing more than 500 animals for adoption, inclusive of surgeries, microchips, vaccinations and ID tags.

The Petco Foundation, an independent nonprofit organization, has raised more than $125 million since it was created in 1999 to help promote and improve the welfare of companion animals. In conjunction with the Foundation, Petco works with and supports thousands of local animal welfare groups across the country and, through in-store adoption events, help find homes for more than 350,000 animals every year.

Business First Spotlight: Son of a Bean Coffee & Art


Located at 1029 Del Paso Blvd., Son of a Bean Coffee & Art has been providing specialty coffee drinks including lattes, espressos, frappes and even scones, for over 13 months.

Son of a Bean is a great place to go for those that love art and culture. From painters to photographers, the location is ideal as part of the Art District on Del Paso Blvd.  Relax and enjoy a cup of coffee while viewing great local art work. Artists are encouraged to bring in their works to display!

Son of a Bean also hosts numerous events from private catered dinners to live music and special guest speakers.

Mention Business First Spotlight, you will receive a free 12 oz regular coffee, or 20% off one specialty drink.  Offer expires February 24, 2015 so grab it now!



Ever thought about telling the story behind your business? Let us know what’s unique and why you love doing business in Sacramento! Now is the chance to share! Contact Tim Padden, Economic Development Department at (916) 808-8506 or send an email. Please limit any submissions to 500 words or less.

“Business First Spotlight” is a unique part of the Sacramento Business First program that features small business in Sacramento. Find out more info here.


Front Street Animal Shelter launches ‘License for Love’ campaign and ‘Free Ride Home Program’


An estimated 10,000 animals enter the Front Street Animal Shelter every year; many of these animals are lacking a license, microchip or ID tag. Without proper identification, dogs that would have otherwise been reunited with their owners end up at the shelter. The goal of the License for Love campaign is to reduce the number of pets coming to the shelter by ensuring that all pets are afforded a license.

In addition to increasing a pet’s odds of being found if they are lost, licensing provides much needed funds to the shelter’s low cost or free spray and neuter program. Licensing also provides funding to other areas of the shelter.

The shelter is also committed to returning all licensed pets home. With that commitment, the shelter is introducing the Free Ride Home Program. Pets wearing a license or a registered microchip that is traceable will be returned home by an animal control officer (this is provided that there are no serious law violations such as a bite, and that an adult owner is home to receive the pet).

For more information visit the City’s Animal-Care page. 

The Sacramento Valley Station parking lot improvements ahead of schedule


The fourth Street pedestrian walkways and vehicle exits are now open at the Sacramento Valley Station. A two-lane exit at 4th street will give vehicles access to westbound I Street and Interstate 5 northbound. Work on the west end of the front parking lot is nearing completion with pedestrian detours in effect. See the printable map and current site circulation.

Visit Sacramento Valley Station for more information.

Surveys are helping to build a stronger Sacramento

The City’s General Plan Annual Report Survey gauges the appropriateness of the City’s policy when it comes to living, working and playing in Sacramento. We look at long term trends. Based on the previous community surveys, it appears that the livability and quality of life for Sacramento residents and employees is improving and increasing, thus affirming that the General Plan policies are moving in the right direction.

Past survey results indicate that the City has enjoyed some level of improvements between 2011 and 2013. Sacramentans said that the city has a more effective public transport system (5 percent increase), a stronger job market (21 percent increase), a variety of shopping options (3 percent increase), a vibrant downtown (3 percent increase). An area where we could improve is steady affordability in the housing market (4 percent decrease). Have community sentiments changed in 2015?

Let the City of Sacramento know what you think! Take this quick five minute survey about living, working and doing business within the City. Tweet via @TheCityofSac

The survey helps us gather long-term information that will be used to help shape public policy, establish future priorities, and create and implement specific projects and programs. Your help is greatly appreciated! If you have any questions, please let us know. For more information, please see a previous blog post on the survey.

Sacramento City Manager recognized for outstanding career

Sacramento City Manager John Shirey is presented with the  Wes McClure Award of Distinction

Sacramento City Manager John Shirey is presented with the Wes McClure Award of Distinction

Sacramento City Manager John F. Shirey was presented with the Wes McClure Award of Distinction at the League of California Cities City Managers’ Department Meeting on Jan. 29 in San Francisco. The award honors a leader making a difference for the profession. The League’s city manager members consider giving the award annually to one city manager who has demonstrated outstanding career service, leadership, ethics, expertise and innovation in city management.

Pat Martel, the city manager of Daly City and an at-large representative of the League’s City Managers’ Department congratulated her colleague John Shirey on his dedication to the profession. “It can be challenging to strike the right balance between the myriad of priorities needed to lead a city, especially one the size of Sacramento. If anyone exemplifies the leadership it takes to manage finances while improving economic development, it’s John. He has an inherent ability to form partnerships, transform development areas into flourishing economic districts, and has invested in the professional development of others, making him a great leader. The City Managers’ Department is honored to present John with this distinguished award.”

The award is in memory of Wes McClure, a former city manager of San Leandro. McClure was greatly admired for his ability to work with city councils and contribute to the profession, as well as to the League and the state.

Through national and international roles, including Cal-ICMA, John Shirey has been instrumental in advocating and initiating programs to change ways in which local governments operate so that they better serve citizens. His decades of accomplishments in city management earned him the 2014 National Public Service award for his outstanding and lasting contributions to public service. The American Society for Public Administration and the National Academy of Public Administration presented Shirey the award.

Shirey, who began as Sacramento City Manager in the fall of 2011, took swift action to stabilize the City’s finances from double-digit deficits and layoffs to a $2 million surplus in this year’s budget. He took the City’s first step toward funding retiree medical coverage and negotiated with all labor unions to pay the employee share of retirement. Also in his three years, he has expanded economic opportunities, and has improved public safety to bring about the lowest crime rate across the board, resulting in some 5,000 fewer instances of crime over a two-year period.  He has strongly advocated increased use of technology and encouraged innovation among City employees, all in an effort to become the “best managed City in California.”

Shirey is now guiding the development of a new $448 million Entertainment and Sports Center in the heart of downtown. The center has enabled the city to retain a coveted NBA franchise, salvage a flagging downtown shopping center, and spur investment in nearby properties and deteriorating and vacant buildings.

With 40-plus years of public service first inspired by watching President John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Speech, John has an extensive portfolio of accomplishments. As City Manager in Cincinnati in the 1990s, he organized and led a joint city-county planning effort to develop a central riverfront master plan to include a MLB stadium and NFL stadium, a museum, and a riverfront park among other amenities. In the 1970s, his efforts helped begin years of reinvestment in downtown Long Beach and its waterfront, which stands today as one of the best examples of successful redevelopment in the nation.

City of Sacramento has best water conservation savings in 100 years!

Water Usage at an All-Time Low Since 1914 – Community saves 7 billion gallons of water saved in 2014


Not only are City residents and businesses cutting back water use by the state-mandated 20 percent, in 2014 City water customers successfully cut water use to the lowest level per person per day in a century. The City reported a consumption rate of 179 gallons per person per day (GPCD) for 2014 compared to an average rate of 248 gallons per person per day, 100 years ago. GPCD measures the average rate of residential and commercial water based on Sacramento’s population.

1980 showed the highest water usage of 307 gallons per person per day. In 1980, the population of the City was approximately 275,000 compared to the current population of about 475,000. Even with over 200,000 more residents in the City today, City customers have never been so efficient with their water usage.

“This significant drop in water usage demonstrates the City and customers’ awareness of water conservation during this historic drought. We are proud of the continued water conservation efforts of our customers,” said Bill Busath, Interim Director of the City of Sacramento, Department of Utilities.

“We remind our customers that the Winter Water Conservation schedule allows for watering only one day per week on weekends, that the drought is not over and that we must continue to work together to conserve this most valuable resource.”

Increased drought awareness has brought attention to the City’s water conservation efforts and has driven up calls for investigation of water misuse. In 2014, the City received nearly 19,000 calls for water conservation investigations and issued nearly 5,700 first notices of violation. This is compared to 1,840 calls for investigation last year over the same time period.

More information about ways to save water can be found at or follow us on Facebook at


Household junk pickup program returns in February

The City’s Household Junk Pickup program is now accepting appointments for 2015. Residential customers can make two  appointments per year, from February through October, for the free pickup of acceptable bulky items, including yard waste. The same equipment and personnel used for Leaf Season in November, December and January operate the Household Junk Pickup program from February through October.

New this year is the expansion of the Appliance and e-waste pickup program. Now residents may schedule two appointments per year for appliance and e-waste collection, in addition to the two appointments for household junk pickup. Appliance and e-waste collection service is available year-round.

To request a Household Junk or Appliance & E-waste appointment:

  • Call 311
  • Make an online request at
  • Use the Sac 311 App for iPhone or Android

Household Junk Pickup Program – Two Appointments from February through October
The City will collect up to five (5) cubic yards of material (4’x4’x9’) per appointment, which is approximately the amount that will fit into the bed of a pickup truck. Extra charges may apply if the junk pile exceeds five cubic yards. Piles placed in the street for collection more than 24 hours before a scheduled appointment, or placed in the street without an appointment, will be considered illegal dumping and may be subject to fines.

Accepted household junk items include yard waste, furniture, mattresses, carpet, toys, and up to four unmounted tires. A full list of acceptable items and guidelines for the Household Junk Pickup Program can be found at

Appliance & E-waste Collection – Two Appointments Year-Round
Starting in 2015, residents may now also schedule two (2) appointments per year for the collection of appliances and electronic waste. Accepted items include washers, dryers and refrigerators, and up to four (4) e-waste items like TV’s, computers, monitors and printers. There is a minimum weight of at least 10 lbs. per pickup. A list of acceptable items for Appliance & E-waste Collection

Leaf Season Ends
The last day that residents may place yard waste and Christmas trees in the street for collection is January 31, 2015. Customers can find out when the next on-street collection is estimated for their address by checking the Leaf Season schedule at or calling 311.


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