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City Desk

Government Editor
Simon Wong
(510) 494-1999 ext. 108
Prizes for transit-related New Year’s resolutions

OAKLAND, Calif. -- As the New Year approaches, it’s not unusual for people to start thinking about their New Year’s resolutions. This year, AC Transit wants to encourage resolutions that relate to transit and the environment.

AC Transit is holding a contest through its Facebook page called “My Transit Resolution.” Participants who share their 2013 Transit Resolution will be eligible to win great prizes, including a gift certificate to Faz Restaurant in Oakland, tickets to the Martin Luther King tribute concert at the Paramount, movie passes, $25 to spend at Oaklandish gift shop in downtown Oakland, and an AC Transit 31-Day bus pass. The contest ends on January 11, 2013. ...
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Silva Pediatric Clinic transfers to Tiburcio Vasquez Health Center

HAYWARD, Calif. -- Tiburcio Vasquez Health Center, Inc. (TVHC) is pleased to announce the acquisition of the Silva Pediatric Clinic, formerly under the auspices of St. Rose Hospital, Hayward, which recently entered into agreement to be acquired by a new management company to improve its operations and its fiscal position. To prepare for this transition, the hospital Board decided to cease providing services at the Silva Clinic. Final approval for the hospital is now pending with the State Attorney General’s Office.

TVHC and St. ...
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Gilbert’s toy drive and car show
Hayward business helps local kids

HAYWARD, Calif. -- Every December, Gilbert D. Robledo, owner of Gilbert's Body & Paint at 2964 Arf Avenue, Hayward, closes his business for one day to host a toy drive party though he collects toys from Thanksgiving until Christmas Eve. He and his wife, Dolores, organize food, BBQ, a DJ and live music to entertain guests and supporters. There are fundraising auctions throughout the day and collection boxes on tables. Bay Bombs Car Club members show off their prized vehicles at this event which is also an opportunity for friends to catch up with each other. Most, including Robledo, grew up together in Union City’s Decoto neighborhood. ...
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Roast and Toast
Installation of WCR Tri-Cities Chapter officers for 2013

TRI-CITIES, Calif. -- The Women’s Council of REALTORS (WCR) Tri-Cities Chapter, formed in 1993, thanked its outgoing board members and line officers Anna May (president), Greg Jones (president-elect), Viola Scott (VP membership), George Duarte (secretary) and Preiyaa Anand (treasurer) and welcomed incoming line officers for 2013, Greg Jones (president), Preiyaa Anand (president-elect), Eliane Selwan (secretary) and Melody Macabugao (treasurer) who was unable to attend the December 19, 2012 luncheon at the Newark Hilton. Sherri Souza, 2011 California State Chapter President, was the installation officer. ...
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Statewide sales and use tax rate increases on January 1, 2013
New sales and use tax rate, effective for four years

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The statewide sales and use tax rate will increase by a quarter of one percent (0.25 percent) from 7.25 percent to 7.50 percent on January 1, 2013. California voters approved this rate when they voted for Proposition 30 on November 6, 2012. The increase take effect from January 1, 2013 and expire on December 31, 2016.

Across California, the sales and use tax rate will range from 7.50 percent to 10.00 percent because in some cities and counties, voter-approved district taxes are added to the statewide base rate.

California sales tax generally applies to retail sales of goods and merchandise except those sales specifically exempted by law. ...
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Thank you to all for your support
Letter to the Editor from Myron Freedman

HAYWARD, Calif. -- As 2012 draws to a close, the Hayward Area Historical Society (HAHS) wishes to thank everyone for supporting local history and the HAHS.

The New Year promises to be exciting for HAHS members as we anticipate opening our new facility on Foothill Boulevard. The HAHS Center for History and Culture will be a resource for local history, education and fun. It will be a place to find stories about the diverse people who make the area what it is today and a gathering place for a wide range of activities that contribute to the cultural life of all who live here.

The new Center will be a home for everyone's history. ...
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Seeking Retirement Board members
Three vacancies on the AC Transit District Retirement Board

OAKLAND. Calif. -- AC Transit is accepting applications from individuals interested in volunteering to serve on the AC Transit District Retirement Board. There are three vacancies: two representing members of the public and one non-ATU employee, whose terms will expire on March 31, 2013. Applications must be submitted by noon, Friday, February 1, 2013. The District’s Board of Directors will make the appointment.

The AC Transit Retirement Board oversees a non-contributory defined benefit plan with assets of approximately $450M. There are approximately 1,700 retirees or beneficiaries receiving benefits from the Plan. ...
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VTA receives state funding to expand BART facilities
Improved BART Hayward Maintenance complex will accommodate expanded fleet

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The California Transportation Commission (CTC) voted unanimously at their December 6, 2012 meeting to allocate $50M in State funding to the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA). The State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) grant will help expand and improve the Bay Area Rapid Transit’s (BART) Hayward Maintenance Complex to accommodate the additional fleet and other system and operational needs when the future BART Silicon Valley Berryessa Extension comes online. ...
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Tri-City winter charity event
More than 330 families served

UNION CITY, Calif. -- The Tri-City Winter Charity Event marked a decade of service on Sunday, December 16, 2012 at the Purple Lotus School on Ninth Street, Union City. The number of families helped by the school, in partnership with Centro de Servicios, is a barometer of the times. In 2009, there was a year-on year increase of 30-40 percent to 174 families. In 2012, more than 330 families visited during the event which lasted from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m.

Students, alumni, parents and volunteers distributed dry and canned foods, clothing, toys and small household items to visitors. Union City Police Explorers arrived with a truck of wrapped Christmas gifts. ...
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EveryOne Counts 2013
Volunteer with Alameda County's Homeless Count

ALAMEDA COUNTY, Calif. -- Every two years EveryOne Home conducts Alameda County's Homeless Count to measure our community's progress towards ending homelessness and to maintain crucial funding for homeless services. We need your help. On Wednesday, January 30, 2013, the Homeless Count will be conducted throughout Alameda County. This requires 250 volunteers.

What is the commitment of volunteering? 1) Attend one Volunteer Training Session during January 2013; several dates, times and locations are offered. 2) Volunteer during the Homeless Count on January 30, 2013; volunteers will serve as interviewers. In this role, you will meet with homeless service users and ask them survey questions. ...
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Presidential Inauguration tickets
Attend Barack Obama's inauguration

Congressional District 17, Calif. -- On January 21, 2013, Americans from across the country will gather in Washington, DC, to celebrate the second Inauguration of President Barack Obama. A limited number of tickets are available. Apply for them on Facebook at

To keep America competitive in the global economy, share your suggestions on how to return people to work in quality jobs or to ensure every child has access to a high quality, equitable education.

Please write a paragraph of at least five sentences, submit a video or draw a picture suggesting an innovative idea to achieve either of the previously mentioned goals. Entries should be posted online at http://on.fb. ...
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Local heroes and organizations recognized
Free tickets to this event

FREMONT, Calif. -- Assemblyman Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) will recognize some outstanding local organizations and heroes on Thursday, December 13 during the 7th Annual State of the 20th Assembly District Address and Awards Ceremony in Fremont.

The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held at Boehringer Ingelheim, Inc., 6701 Kaiser Drive, Fremont. Registration begins at 5:30 p.m. and the program starts at 6 p.m. The public is encouraged to bring a children’s toy and to call Wieckowski’s District Office at (510) 440-9030 to reserve a free ticket. Space is limited. ...
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Citizen’s Advisory Committee vacancy

HAYWARD, Calif. -- The Hayward Area Recreation and Park District (HARD) invites applications from interested residents of Hayward, Castro Valley, San Lorenzo and unincorporated Alameda County for one committee position on the District’s Citizen’s Advisory Committee (CAC). This committee meets four times per year and provides recommendations to the District Board of Directors, reviews District programs and park design projects and works on specific Board-directed projects.

To obtain a CAC application call (510) 881-6704 or visit to download an application. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. ...
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Upcoming community workshops for General Plan Update
Give your input on December 10 or December 12

HAYWARD, Calif. -- The General Plan is a city’s basic planning document that provides a blueprint for development, guides growth and sets land use policy city-wide. The purpose of a General Plan is to: identify land use, transportation, environmental, economic and social goals and policies as they relate to new development; provide a basis for the City’s decision-making; provide citizens with an opportunity to participate in the planning and decision-making process; and inform citizens, developers, decision-makers and others of the ground rules that guide development within the city. ...
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Bring your own bags
Alameda County’s Reusable Bag Ordinance takes effect January 1, 2013

ALAMEDA COUNTY, Calif. -- When the Alameda County Waste Management Authority’s Reusable Bag Ordinance goes into effect January 1, 2013, grocery stores and many other retailers selling packaged foods and/or alcohol will stop distribution of single-use bags at checkout. Recycled-content paper or reusable bags may be provided, if the retailer charges a minimum price of 10 cents per bag. To avoid the bag charge, customers should take their own shopping bags.

The Alameda County Waste Management Authority adopted the Reusable Bag Ordinance in January of 2012 to further the agency’s long-term waste-reduction goals by helping to decrease the number of bags entering landfill. ...
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Holiday of Wishes
Food drive

FREMONT, Calif. -- The Holidays are when many of us look forward to gatherings, holiday meals, decorations and exchanges of gifts. It is easy to forget there are people in our community going through tough times and struggling to put food on their tables. A holiday celebration and an exchange of gifts are not even an option.

Holiday of Wishes is an organization consisting of local businesses and community members helping needy families enjoy this holiday season. This year, we are inviting children and families that are documented at poverty level or below from six of the elementary schools in our community. ...
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Measure B1 just shy of success
Alameda CTC calls off recount. Despite receiving 66.53% of the vote, Measure B1 did not meet threshold for passage.

The Alameda County Transportation Commission (CTC) informed the Alameda County Registrar of Voters on December 4, 2012 that it accepts the certified election outcome. Measure B1, which would have brought almost $8 billion in transportation investments into the County, did not meet the threshold necessary to pass, despite receiving 66.53 percent of the vote. The required threshold to pass is 66.67 percent and Measure B1 was just 0.14 percent below this.

Due to the high voter support for Measure B1 and almost reaching the two-thirds requirement to pass, Alameda CTC launched a recount. The recount began the morning of Tuesday, December 4, 2012. ...
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Christmas fundraiser
Christmas fundraiser for Bay Area Black Pilots Association's youth programs

HAYWARD, Calif. -- The Bay Area Black Pilots Association (BABPA) will hold its annual Christmas Fundraiser Banquet on Saturday, December 8, 2012 at the Doubletree Hotel by Hilton, Berkeley.

This year, the well-attended event, which will last from 6 p.m. until 11 p.m., will feature Tuskegee Airmen from the William “Bill” Campbell Chapter, a guest speaker and raffle door prizes. Brother Jaye Studios will be the official photographer and Take About Productions will provide the entertainment. There will be a no-host bar from 6 p.m. until 7 p.m. Dinner will be served at 7 p.m.

Tickets, at $70 per person, must be purchased in advance. None will be available on the door. ...
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Roast and toast

TRI-CITIES, Calif. -- Join the Women’s Council of REALTORS (WCR) Tri-Cities Chapter for their monthly luncheon at the Hilton Hotel, Newark, on December 19, 2012. Networking at 11:30 a.m.; program and lunch from noon until 1:30 p.m.

WCR will thank outgoing board members and line officers Anna May (president), Greg Jones (president-elect), Viola Scott (VP membership), George Duarte (secretary) and Preiyaa Anand (treasurer) and welcome incoming line officers Greg Jones, Preiyaa Anand, Eliane Selwan and Melody Macabugao. ...
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Paddy’s coffee house
Dec. 15 - all-day, pot luck party plus donations for Tree of Hope

UNION CITY, Calif. -- Contrary to rumor, Paddy’s Coffee House is not to close. Rather this famed institution, Union City’s only independent coffee shop, is relocating because its lease is about to expire. According to owner, Paddy Iyer, it is time for operational changes and structural alterations which are easier to implement at a new site than at 3900 Smith Street where the business has been for a decade.

Iyer always wanted to open a coffee house and, after a corporate career in IT, decided it was time for a change. So, when the opportunity arose, “Paddy’s” was born. ...
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Upcoming community workshops for General Plan Update
Online survey available for those who cannot attend a workshop

HAYWARD, Calif. -- The General Plan is a city’s basic planning document that provides a blueprint for development, guides growth and sets land use policy city-wide. The purpose of a General Plan is to: identify land use, transportation, environmental, economic and social goals and policies as they relate to new development; provide a basis for the City’s decision-making; provide citizens with an opportunity to participate in the planning and decision-making process; and inform citizens, developers, decision-makers and others of the ground rules that guide development within the city. ...
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