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Citrus Heights News Briefs: RT, homeless vets, Frost update, Pet-a-Palooza

Pet-a-palooza, rusch park
Pet-a-Palooza 2017 drew thousands to Rusch Park in Citrus Heights. // CH Sentinel

Updated April 24, 9:08 a.m.–
Latest news briefs include thousands of pets and people coming to Rusch Park on Saturday for Pet-a-Palooza 2017, an event held to help homeless veterans at Holy Family Church, marijuana and sanctuary state legislation addressed at a local community meeting, and a new survey being released by Regional Transit.

Pet-a-Palooza draws thousands to Rusch Park
Pets and people flooded into Rusch Park for the annual Pet-a-Palooza event on April 22, enjoying food trucks, pet activities, and more. Unlike prior years, the event was contained to the west side of the park, closest to the Rusch Home, due to grasses being too wet to allow vendor vehicles to set up in other areas of the park. Singer “Ruth B” performed on stage during the event, and kids had their pick of inflatable slides and activities to choose from.

A police spokesman said the Citrus Heights Police Department performed two K-9 demonstrations and called the event a successful family friendly day, with no issues. Organizers estimate the annual free event draws 7-10,000 people each year. It is sponsored by CBS Radio and the Sunrise Recreation and Parks District.

Frost addresses homelessness, marijuana, sanctuary state at Citrus Heights meeting
About two-dozen residents came out to a community meeting Friday morning held by former Citrus Heights councilwoman and current Supervisor Sue Frost at Denny’s on the corner of Greenback Lane and Sunrise Boulevard. During the one-hour meeting, Frost gave residents an update on homelessness, marijuana, and current legislation at the state level that seeks to make California a “sanctuary state.”

Frost presented statistics on homelessness that drew a shocked reaction from some in attendance, stating the county spends over $40 million each year on homelessness. She said the most recent homeless count in 2015 found about 2,650 homeless are located in the county, up from 2,350 in 2011. The supervisor also expressed opposition to pending sanctuary state legislation, stating that Sacramento County receives an estimated $629 million from the federal government each year and could potentially lose significant funding if sanctuary legislation is passed. Addressing marijuana and Prop 64, Frost said “we already have issues that we did not expect,” citing a new county policy that now requires code enforcement personnel to wear bullet proof vests. Her next community meeting in Citrus Heights is scheduled for Aug. 25 at 7:30 a.m. and will be held at the same location.

Veterans, homeless served at 2nd annual Stand Down event in Citrus Heights
The Citrus Heights Homeless Assistance Resource Team hosted its second annual “Stand Down” event for veterans on April 18 at Holy Family Church on Old Auburn Road. HART Spokeswoman Kathilynn Carpenter said the event resulted in nearly 100 homeless and at-risk veterans being assisted with accessing benefits and services, including mental health, medical, legal, employment and housing counseling, and more. She said clothing, meals, haircuts and showers were also provided at the event.

HART’s mission is to “provide resources that will enable at risk people and people experiencing homelessness in Citrus Heights and adjacent areas to become independent, self-sustaining and participating members of the community.” Learn more about the group at: www.citrusheightshart.org.

RT launches new survey in effort to enhance service
A new survey was announced this week by the Sacramento Regional Transit District, as part of an effort to “enhance service, improve agency operations and bring greater value to the region,” according to an April 20 news release. The survey asks county residents what they think about RT’s existing bus and light rail system and why they ride public transit. The survey can be taken online here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DGD32JT.

Other happenings over the past week included a gun owners crab feed fundraiser at the community center on Friday night, Relay for Life at San Juan High School on Saturday, and a strategic planning session held by city leaders on Tuesday to set objectives for the next six months. See full story on the strategic plan in next week’s edition.

*Correction: An initial version of this story stated Frost said Sacramento County “could stand to lose about $600 million in federal funding” if sanctuary legislation were to pass. The story has been updated to state that Frost said the county receives and estimated $629 million in federal funds annually and “could potentially lose significant funding” if the proposed sanctuary legislation were to pass. The story also incorrectly said Frost’s next meeting will be on August 21. It will be on August 25. The Sentinel’s policy is to strive for accuracy in all reporting, but to quickly acknowledge and correct any errors.

Also in the news last week:

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