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Friday Update on December 4, 2015

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Friday Update on December 4, 2015

All,

A couple items as we roll into the holidays.

  • The Putah Creek Car Bridge will re-open to one way traffic on Monday. They will have one of those traffic lights to control traffic to allow both north and south traffic. The intersection of Russell Street and Railroad is now open.
  • Salmon are back in Putah Creek and it is absolutely magical. The many restoration projects are beginning to show results and the estimates are that we have in excess of 400 at last count spawning west of the trestle bridge. Click HERE for a view of the salmon from above the water and click HERE for a video below the water. Both are my amateur attempts at cinematography so forgive the quality.
  • Saturday is the Downtown Christmas Tree Lighting and this year has a lighted Tractor Parade. The Parade begins at 5:30 and the tree lighting will follow. Kudo’s to the Chamber for their efforts and to Councilmember Wade Cowan and Kathy Cowan (and crew) for putting the lights on the tree and the candy canes throughout the town. Things look GREAT!!
  • With the upcoming retirement of our Police Chief Sergio Gutierrez, I will be assuming the City’s seat on the Yolo Emergency Communications Agency (YECA). They are the agency which provides 911 service to our community.
  • Saturday, the 2015 Downtown Piano will host its last concert behind the Community Center beginning at 3:00. Music and fun for the entire family. Following the concert, the piano will be dropped off the Trestle Bridge on to a pile of rocks to make way for the 2016 piano. Click HERE for a video of last years’ final piano concert and drop.
  • The Winters Fire Department’s Toys for Tots is going strong. They are seeking donations of new, unwrapped toys from the community. Drop off locations are around town and always at the Fire Station.

On a sobering and sad note this week is the terrorism which occurred in San Bernardino. Before coming to Winters, I lived and worked less than 5 minutes away from where this occurred. An absolutely senseless act which will affect hundreds of lives forever.

The San Bernardino first responders are no different than the staff we have working for the City of Winters in our public safety. Winters Police, Winters Fire, Yolo 911 and AMR Ambulance personnel are trained and operate no differently than those who responded in San Bernardino. They faced an unthinkable scenario on Wednesday and saved lives and potentially more bloodshed by acts of pure heroism. As a City Manager, the thoughts of these things happening on both large and small scales are what keep me awake nights. The task of keeping people safe and dealing with violence is a dangerous job and enough cannot be said for those who dedicate their lives to keeping all of us with a sense peace in our community.

Over the past 18 months, our Police personnel have been training in “active shooter” scenario’s and response. I can only pray that we will never have to use those skills for what is a horrific situation.

I feel privileged to know and work with the men and women who serve our public safety. We really count on them and they deserve our gratitude as they serve our communities.

Words are rather hollow, but the senseless acts of terrorists against innocent people throughout the world in numbing. Every reason why it is essential that we need to squeeze and love our families and friends a little more often, show kindness and appreciate the fact that we live in the greatest country in the world. Light a candle for the families and souls of those affected throughout the world by these senseless acts of violence and give thanks for those who have taken the challenge of protecting us. Most importantly, show more love and peace!

John