Tag Archives: West Sacramento

Bird Watchers Flock To West Sacramento To Catch A Glimpse Of Rare Bird

WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A small bird is drawing big crowds in West Sacramento.

Somehow this rare duck ended up on the wrong continent, and now people are coming from hundreds of miles away to get a glimpse of the garganey.

The garganey was first spotted in this pond last Friday.

And since then, bird watching enthusiasts have been flocking to the Southport neighborhood.

“I stood here for about two hours waited waited, played the waiting game and then finally he came out,” says bird watcher Rob Lowry.

Garganey normally fly from the arctic towards Eurasia and Africa.

“I guess it took a wrong turn at the North Pole and came down here,” says bird watcher Bart Wickel.

And this is no ugly duckling, the garganey is known for its brightly colored plumage

Bill Frey came from Carson City, Nevada when he heard this duck was taking cover here.

“I’d never seen one anywhere before, so in birding terms this is a life bird for me,” says Frey.

Bird enthusiasts say all the rain we’ve had this winter is creating a perfect habitat for these type of migratory waterfowl.

West Sac Neighbors Get Windows Smashed By Rock Vandals

WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A family was rattled and left to pick up the pieces of shattered glass and they’re not alone after someone hurled a rock through their window.

“This is the window that was broken and this was the rock that was used to break it,” Josh Harwell said as he stood in his home.

The massive rock came flying through the kitchen Monday night while his family was out to dinner. Something he’s now calling a blessing.

“If this would’ve come in and hit her in the head it would’ve been game over,” he showed the rock next to his 5-year-old daughter.

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A neighbor called 911 saying they overheard someone yell, “How many windows did you hit?”

“It had just shattered the tile, but completely took the window out,” he said. “There’s glass that came up into the hall of the house.”

While searching for more victims of vandals, we came across a business that was busted through.

“They picked up one of our rocks and just threw it right through the window,” said Tiraz Warren.

The owner of the River City Dance studio says this smash happened Sunday night.

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“We taped it up so it didn’t scare anybody,” she showed on the large front window.

The act was caught on surveillance video, but it’s hard to tell who the vandals are.

“It’s very upsetting because we are just trying to run a simple little dance studio here and for somebody to walk by randomly and just try to destroy it is disappointing,” she said. “Just for this one window, it’s going to be between $600 to $800.”

Police say there have been multiple reports and it has neighbors in the state streets of West Sacramento on edge wondering whose window will be next.

“This is just a violation of privacy and you know it’s obstruction,” Harwell said. “We’re definitely left with a lot of questions, why did it happen and will it happen again?”

The West Sacramento Police Department is hosting a meeting on February 27th at the VFW on Drever Street from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. for those in the community to come to voice their concerns.

UK Artist Brings Bright Idea To Sacramento Waterfront

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — One of Sacramento’s most popular tourist attractions is about to get a little more colorful. New public artwork will soon be making a splash along the riverfront.

UK-based artist Joshua Sofaer has a vision for the Sacramento and West Sacramento waterfront.

“There’s this river that sits between those two cities but it also joins them and this project is really about trying to get the two cities celebrating the people that live there,” Sofaer said.

The artist, who has had exhibits in London, Stockholm, and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, has been chosen to create new public art that ties the two river towns together.

His pitch is to put up giant light boxes along the docks on both sides of the river with colorful maritime signal flags.

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“And each of those graphic representations is a letter of the alphabet,” Sofaer said.

Those letters would spell out someone’s name — but whose?

“Members of the public will be invited to nominate someone that they care for, or someone that they respect, someone that they love, it could be their mom, brother or sister, or friend,” Sofaer said. “I hope that they’ll be attracted by the idea that these public spaces are named after ordinary people just like them.”

Some people think it’s a bright idea.

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An idea for new art in Old Sacramento — one that could make the riverfront a little more lively.

“The hope of this project is that people will want to come down here more and use it as a promenade,” Sofaer said.

Sofaer is now trying to work out all of the technical details. Funding for the project comes from a $125,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

The cities are hoping to launch the public name nomination process in May.

Getting Answers: How Do These New Scooters Work?

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — The new Uber-owned  Jump scooters hit the streets of Sacramento and West Sacramento today. That’s got some folks asking how they work. Here are five common questions about these new urban transportation tools.

How Many Scooters Are There?

Jump Scooter launch in Sacramento’s Oak Park.

In this initial launch, Jump is only deploying 100 scooters. More will be phased in over the remainder of the year.

How Do I Find A Scooter?

Screen capture of Uber app.

You can find them in the same place you find Jump Bikes. The scooters are also owned and operated by Uber. Simply open the Uber app and toggle from Ride to Bike & Scooter at the top of the screen to see where available scooters are located.

How Much Do They Cost?

The scooters cost $.15 per minute.

The scooters cost $.15 per minute. That works out to $9 per hour. But the scooters are not meant for trips that long. They are built to go short distances.

How Fast Do They Go?

Jump Scooters have a top speed of 15 miles per hour.

The Jump Scooters have a top speed of 15 miles per hour. For perspective, that’s about five times faster than the average person walks.

Where Do They Get Parked?

Jump Scooters

Riders are supposed to park the scooters at bike racks and not leave them out on the sidewalks.

What Happens If They Are Left Out?

One big question is, how will Sacramento riders respond?

City officials have been working on this issue for months. They have numerous plans in place, including fining Uber $27 for every scooter left out.

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Police Investigating Road Rage Incident In West Sacramento

WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Police are investigating a road rage incident at the Chevron on Harbor Boulevard and Evergreen Avenue.

Police say the incident happened just before 6 p.m. between two drivers. After the drivers pulled over, a physical altercation happened.

The victim is saying the suspect brandished a gun, hower police investigations do not indicate there was a firearm. The suspect reportedly drove away in his vehicle.

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The suspect reportedly had a passenger in their vehicle, but that person ran away on foot when the fighting began.

Police are investigating the area and said the victim’s vehicle has a slashed tire, but it is unclear if the suspect slashed it.


West Sacramento Launches Its Own Flat-Rate Rideshare Program

WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – West Sacramento is testing its own rideshare program for people travelling in the city.

$3.50 will get you a ride anywhere within the West Sacramento city limits. The price drops to $1.75 a ride for those 65 and older who meet ADA requirements. The prices may change during the one-year pilot program.

Drivers in a marked Mercedes Benz van will pick up a maximum 6 passengers within a block of their starting point. Wait times are estimated around 5-10 minutes based on driver availability. Passengers must be 18 to ride alone. Those ages 13-18 can ride alone with a parent or guardian’s permission; those under 13 must be accompanied by an adult.

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The on-demand program is operated through New York-based Via, which also owns the 10 vans.

Passengers can book the flat-rate ride using the Via app or by calling 916-318-5101. Currently, rides are available on weekdays from 7 am-7 pm and Saturdays from 9 am-7 pm.


According to West Sacramento, the rideshare program may expand to surrounding cities and towns based on demand from customers.

Via drivers must undergo a criminal background check and have the required insurance.

Trucker Shortage Means Companies, Consumers Paying More To Ship

WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A trucker shortage across the state, and the country, is bringing some unwanted changes to consumers.

According to the American Trucking Association, there’s a shortage of 50,000 truck drivers nationally. It’s increasing shipping costs not just to businesses, but to consumers, too.

Jesica Robinson is hauling her way into a new career, and a change of scenery. Robinson says her aspiration to become a truck driver came easy.

“I’m always traveling,” she said.

She’s been training at the Western Truck School in West Sacramento for the past eight weeks, along with a few other truck drivers in the making.

“It’s a good switch, it’s relaxing sometimes too, it also holds a lot of responsibility,” said Andrew Machado, another aspiring truck driver.

And truck driving is in high demand. Truck schools, even large-scale businesses say they’re hurting for drivers.

“The market doesn’t have enough new drivers coming in to replace the drivers that are retiring or moving on out of the industry,” said Mike Nord, president of Western Truck School.

He says he started noticing a decline in the number of students about a year and a half ago.

“Our student class size would go from as high as 25 students per month and now it could be six or eight per month,” Nord added.

Nord says younger people are choosing different career paths, and the ones who do enter the trucking industry are in their mid-30s. Nord says the average age used to be 21.

The shortage is driving up shipping costs across the nation. Amazon’s chief financial officer says that’s one reason the company increased its Prime membership by $20 earlier this month.

Trucking experts say the shortage will only get worse for businesses and consumers. The California Trucking Association says it’s getting ready to roll out a new task force to entice more people to get behind the wheel.

“We are gonna start looking at job fairs throughout the state,” said Eric Sauer, senior vice president of the association.

The CTA estimates in the next decade, California will have a shortage of 70,000 truck drivers, and 1 million nationwide.

Body Of Missing Fisherman Found Near Port Of West Sacramento

WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — West Sacramento Police say it was around 10:20 Sunday morning when a fire department recovery team found a man’s body in the Sacramento River just south of the Port of West Sacramento.  Police say the body had surfaced to the point where it could be seen and recovered, however, the victim was not wearing a life jacket.

The coroner’s office has yet to officially confirm the man’s identity, but police say they are “fairly certain” the body is that of 54-year-old fisherman, Paul Beverly of Oakland.  Police say the boat Beverly was on capsized last Wednesday and they’ve been searching for his body ever since. Two others on the boat at the time made it out safely.

The deep water channel near the port is a busy area for boating and fishing and enthusiasts say there are hazards that you must watch out for.  “Debris, you know, stuff in the water” said boater Patrick Mullen. “There’s a lot of sticks and you try not to run over anyone’s line who’s fishing from the bank” he said.

Mullen says a person can get into trouble quickly if they go overboard.  “Especially when you’re in a deep water channel like this. 40 feet doesn’t seem that deep until you’re flailing around trying to get back into your boat” Mullen said.

Police have notified Beverly’s family, including his fiancée.

California Budget Includes $100 Million For Indian Culture Center

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Native American tribes in California received a big boost to the future of the Indian Heritage Center plans last week.

Inside Gov. Jerry Brown’s revised budget is $100 million for a new cultural center to be built. It’s a project that was discussed more than a decade ago.

“It’s as good a use for the riverfront as we could ask for,” said Chris Ledesma, West Sacramento Mayor Pro Tem.

“We’ll have to go back and dust off the old plans and see OK where were we and pick back up and go,” said Ledesma with a smile.

He recalls discussions years ago about a new Indian Heritage Center.

“There will be a welcoming center,” pointed Ledesma while showing CBS13 around the proposed West Sacramento site. “It’s mostly going to be trails and walkways that people can explore.”

The project was put on hold after the economic downturn in 2008. The money wasn’t available, until now.

“It’s historic,” said Lisa Mangat, the director of California State Parks.

The governor’s budget sets aside $100 million for a new Indian Culture Center. Another $100 million would need to be raised through donations and state and tribal fundraising efforts.

Mangat says the planning and development of the public center will be a partnership with the tribal communities.

“It’s going to be a place to gather and celebrate the cultures,” said Mangat.

A roughly 4,500-square-foot building on the grounds of Sutter’s Fort is the state’s recognition of Native American History.

“We haven’t as a state always celebrated the rich contributions of these peoples,” said Mangat.

The entire state museum consists of a handful of exhibits in a building near Sutter’s Fort.

“We need to do a better job of recognizing and celebrating the contributions of these communities and to really go big and go bold,” said Mangat.

But the large money amount raises some concerns.

“It was unclear exactly how the dollar amount was determined and if that was the right amount that we should be thinking of,” said Ashley Ames with the Legislative Analyst’s Office.

She says they were provided few details on the project.

“We really don’t know exactly how much we would end up spending on them,” said Ames.

The legislative budget hearing happens on Wednesday. Elected leaders will decide how to proceed with the governor’s recommendation of $100 million for the new center.

West Sacramento Launching Controversial Program Watching Public’s Social Media Posts

WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — West Sacramento is the first city to launch a controversial new program that watches what people post about it online.

The pilot project gives city leaders a look at what’s trending in the city, whether it’s good or bad. It’s also creating privacy concerns around how the data is being used.

When a wave of mailbox thefts hit the city last year, people complained on social media, and West Sacramento was watching. City leaders were alerted to the community concerns by a new system.

“We saw the thing that most people were talking about were mailbox thefts,” said Mayor Christopher Cabaldon. “That’s something that we might not have noticed just by waiting for people to come to city hall or filing a complaint.”

The city is using Zencity, a system that crawls through publicly available social media posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. It taks all of that data and sorts through to find what people are talking about and whether it’s positive or negative.

“The purpose of Zencity is to see the big picture,” he said.

In January, concerns came from the closure of a Safeway store and the brutal murder of two sisters at the hands of their father. In March, a shooting threat at River City High School generated negative posts over the lack of updates from police and school staff.

“It’s not that Zencity replaces our other forms of civic engagement, its just a way to listen more,” he said.

But in the wake of the Facebook Cambridge Analytica scandal and concerns over data collection in general, some are worried about where that data goes and who sees it.

“There are ways this could go wrong,” said Peter Eckersley with the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “Once you get into policing there are many more potential concerns around the use of artificial intelligence.”

The ACLU worries about the potential misuse of the technology. Facebook started as a social engagement tool, then turned into a behemoth that exposed user data, even in unplanned ways.

“There’s no privacy issues because we’re not opening up anything that hasn’t already been published publicly for the purpose of being public,” Cabaldon said.

Instead, he hopes it will give all residents an equal say in civic matters.

“It allows us to hear the whole community and not just the loudest voices that come to our chambers for a public hearing,” he said.

The city is spending $12,000 from the Measure E sales-tax increase to license the software for one year. It gets a 66 percent discount as an early user.