Friday, October 31, 2008


September – October 2008

Table of Contents
- Real Estate Roundup (August-September 2008)
- Featured Property – Building 599 Mare Island, Vallejo
- Solano Economic Summit 4
- Did you know?

Real Estate Roundup
(August – September 2008)


CBRE (http://www.cbre.com/)
- 537 Stone Road, Benicia – 30,976 sf leased to Pacific Insulation Company
- 767 Eubanks Drive, Suite C&D, Vacaville – 65,000 sf lease to CSK Auto, Inc.
- Quarters N, Mare Island, Vallejo – 8,450 sf leased to BHM Construction

Colliers International (http://www.colliersparrish.com/)
- 537 Stone Road, #C-D, Benicia – 30,976 sf leased to Pacific Insulation Co
- 3919 Oregon Street, Benicia - 27,200 sf leased to Westcal Enterprises, Inc
- 6400 Goodyear Road, Benicia – 18,406 sf lease renewal to NHT Audio
- 6610 Goodyear Road, Benicia - 11,614 sf leased to Airco Commercial Serv
- 536-H Stone Road, Benicia - 2,338 sf leased to ThyssenKrupp Safway, Inc
- 240 West "E" Street, Dixon - 2,761 sf leased to Accomplished Recovery
- 505 Lopes Road, Fairfield – 13,500 sf leased to Munters Corp
- 1891 Woolner Avenue, Suite A, Fairfield - 25,000 sf leased to Pacific Wine Distributors
- 1891 Woolner Avenue, Suite C, Fairfield - 10,804 sf leased to Party Rentals
- 3333 Vaca Valley Parkway, Suite 800, Vacaville - 9,827 sf leased to Barrier Systems, Inc.

Cushman & Wakefield (http://www.cushmanwakefield.com/)
- 2445 S. Watney Way, Fairfield – 91,000 sf leased to ABCO Laboratories
- 4885 Fulton Drive, Fairfield – 5,200 sf leased to BCI Communications Inc.

Grubb & Ellis (http://www.grubb-ellis.com/)
- 3333 Vaca Valley Parkway, Suite 800, Vacaville - 9,827 sf leased to Barrier Systems, Inc.

Premier Commercial (http://www.pcres.net/)
- 141 Elmira Road, Vacaville – 4,100 sf leased to Pipa Enterprises, LLC
- 151 Peabody Rd, Vacaville – 2,260 Bay Valley Foods

The Wiseman Company (http://www.wisemanco.com/)
- 5030 Business Center Dr, Fairfield – 2,000 sf leased to Skye Technical Services Inc.
__________________________________________________________

Featured Property of the Month – Mare Island Building 599, Vallejo

Mare Island (the former U.S. Naval Base) was established in 1854. The island encompasses over 5,000+ acres and includes a wide variety of land uses, including park lands, residential communities, retail, industrial and office uses.

A joint venture, Lennar Mare Island acquired a ±650 acre portion of the island for the construction and redevelopment of residential, industrial, office and commercial properties.

The island now has approximately 2,000 employees, entitlements for over 7 million square feet of industrial/office product (with workable inventory of approximately 5.5 million sq. ft. available for lease or sale), and 1,400 homes. Touro University has over 900 full time students at its campus on the island.

Building 599 (Railroad Ave & Pintado Street)

Building 599 is a well maintained, highly visible and easily accessible freestanding building well suited for mixed use occupancy.
• Size: ±112, 327 square feet (±503’ x ±223’)
• Office: Office to Suit
• Occupancy: Available
• Clear Height: Center Bay ±38’
• Zoned: Mixed Use
• Cranes: One (1) Ten (10) ton and Two (2) Five (5) ton bridge cranes (not currently certified)
• Power: ±400 Amps, 277/480 volt, 3 phase electrical service
• Loading: Six (6) 20’x20’ grade level doors
• Wide open bays, center bay is ±60’ wide, side bays are ±80’ wide

For additional information contact
Greg Smyth, First VP
(925) 296-7717
greg.smyth@cbre.com
www.discovermareisland.com/
____________________________________________________________________
Solano Economic Summit 4

___________________________________________________________________

Did you know?

Of the estimated 282,690 Solano County residents that are eligible to vote, 176,043 or 62.3% are actually registered to vote in this Tuesday’s election. Don’t forget to vote!

The Solano Economic Development Corporation’s mission is to enhance the economic vitality
and quality of life in Solano County communities through the attraction,
growth and retention of business and industry.


Solano EDC Team

Mike Ammann, President (mike@solanoedc.org)
Sandy Person, Vice-President (sandy@solanoedc.org)
Pat Uhrich, Office Manager (pat@solanoedc.org)
Andy Turba, Special Projects (andy@solanoedc.org)

Solano Economic Development Corporation
360 Campus Lane, Suite 102, Fairfield, CA 94534
Phone: (707) 864-1855 Fax: (707) 864-6621
Website: http://www.solanoedc.org/

Solano County agriculture could gain about 2,300 acres with approval of Measure T

Measure T would save farm land
County environmentalists, farmers support measure
By SARAH ROHRS/Times-Herald staff writer
Article Launched: 10/31/2008 08:17:18 AM PDT

Suisun Valley's wineries are probably some of Solano County's best-kept secrets, but these and other agricultural treasures will become better known through Measure T on Tuesday's ballot, proponents say.

Measure T enjoys a wide margin of support from county farmers and environmentalists, they say.

"It will help preserve agriculture in Solano County," said Winters farmer Joe Martinez, president of the Solano County Farm Bureau.
Measure T could result in more agriculture-related tourism, and also allow farmers and vintners to add to their operations for such things as weddings and bed-and-breakfasts, Martinez said.

One key argument used in support of Measure T is that it would focus development around cities, not add to sprawl in agricultural fields.
In particular, the measure would ease red tape by allowing farmers more flexibility, Martinez said. They would be able expand sewage capacity and install grape crushers, and similar activities, without having to get use permits or zoning variances, Martinez said.

The Solano Board of Supervisors placed the measure on the ballot through a 4-1 vote following the board's August passage of the new county general plan.
Vallejo Supervisor Barbara Kondylis voted against the ballot measure saying it would result in the loss of 3,000 acres of agriculture.

"That's too big of a price to pay," Kondylis said.
Measure T calls for 5,557 acres of residential, commercial and other lands to be converted to agriculture.

However, 3,162 acres of agricultural lands would be turned over for housing or commercial uses, particularly around Vacaville.
But, in the end, agriculture could gain about 2,300 acres, said county planning manager Mike Yankovich. "The net result is an increase of ag lands in the county," he said.

Measure T supporter Duane Kromm, a former county supervisor, said the measure extends a growth initiative which has been good for Solano.
Measure T would extend the 1994 Orderly Growth Initiative for another 20 years and amend the initiative to reflect agriculture and open space policies and land-use designations found in the new general plan.

Solano farmers are so enamored with the new general plan that they drove their tractors through downtown Fairfield over the summer to show support.
Farmers helped shape the plan, and want assurances their lands will be protected in the future, Kromm said.

Measure T takes up seven pages of the Solano County sample ballot booklet, including the full text of the measure and several colored maps showing current and proposed zoning changes. The new general plan and Measure T are also the subject of a four-page county newsletter sent to all voters this month.

In Vallejo and Benicia, Measure T calls for those cities' "sphere of influence" lands to remain the same. These are lands within the county, but which can be annexed into the cities.

In Benicia, land outside the city limits on the north side of Lake Herman Road would remain agricultural, said county planner Jim Louie. Development could occur, but not more than one dwelling for every 20 acres.

Louie said Measure T has widespread support from farmers, the Solano County Greenbelt Alliance, the Vacaville Chamber of Commerce and others. Vallejo Mayor Osby Davis signed the ballot measure in favor of it.

No one submitted a ballot argument against Measure T.

In Vacaville, officials expressed concerns about Measure T, and held numerous meetings with county officials to try to hammer out a new agreement, officials said. The City Council took a neutral position, said public information officer Mark Mazzaferro.

Measure T, according to Vacaville staff reports, does not recognize the city's own urban growth line which calls for lands immediately outside the city limits to remain undeveloped.

Instead, the measure would allow some of these agricultural properties to be converted to commercial and industrial uses, planners said.
How these new businesses would be served with water and other municipal services has not been determined. Louie said that if voters pass Measure T the county would continue working with the city.

Some residents in Vallejo's Homeacres, a neighborhood within
the county limits, are worried Measure T would allow the city of Vallejo to annex their properties and forever change the area's rural character.

However, Louie said the ballot measure would not do that. He said the county has no plans to have county land annexed into the city of Vallejo. He added an annexation request would need to be initiated by either Homeacre residents or the city.
"The new general plan does not encourage or force annexations," he said.

• E-mail Sarah Rohrs at srohrs@thnewsnet.com or call 553-6832.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Comprehensive Psychiatric Services, Inc. has chosen the Green Valley Executive Center building in the City of Fairfield

October 28, 2008


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Patti Magee, Executive Assistant
pmagee@WisemanCo.com
707.427.1212


The Wiseman Company is pleased to announce that Comprehensive Psychiatric Services, Inc. has chosen the Green Valley Executive Center building at 5030 Business Center Drive in Fairfield for their Solano county offices. Kirk Hull of The Wiseman Company represented both parties in the transaction.

Comprehensive Psychiatric Services, a medical group, was incorporated in 1979 to provide behavioral medicine services for individuals, couples, children and families with a wide variety of problems. They currently have offices in Walnut Creek and Fremont and look forward to serving the needs of Solano County.

Also founded in 1979, The Wiseman Company has become Solano County's leading full-service commercial real estate firm. Recognizing the demand for superior, quality, professional offices, Wiseman developed the first Class A office building in 1989. Today, the firm and its affiliates own, manage and lease the preferred, multi-tenant office buildings in Solano, Yolo and Napa Counties. The business and professional tenants range from NYSE companies to local entrepreneurs.

Doyle Wiseman, founder, noted that: “their one common requirement is a professionally managed, clean, efficient office which provides the optimum environment for employees and clients. By choosing a building operated by The Wiseman Company, Comprehensive Psychiatric Services will join these successful businesses at Solano's most desirable addresses and will enjoy the quality of service and accommodations that their practice deserves.”

For more information on The Wiseman Company, contact Kirk Hull at 707.427.1212 or khull@WisemanCo.com.

State Compensation Insurance Fund Opens Green Campus in Vacaville, Calif.

State Compensation Insurance Fund Opens Green Campus in Vacaville, Calif.
Facility May Earn Silver LEED Certification
Last update: 12:19 p.m. EDT Oct. 28, 2008

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct 28, 2008 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- They say one man's trash is another man's treasure.

For State Compensation Insurance Fund, garbage once destined for landfills now comprises more than 20 percent of the building materials used in its new green campus in Vacaville, Calif.

In a demonstration of its ongoing commitment to ensuring the health of California's communities and environment, State Fund opened the doors of its new facility to 750 employees in early October and celebrated today with a ceremony to showcase the sustainable resources and innovative technology that are expected to earn the campus a prestigious Silver LEED certification in early 2009.

"The decision to construct a new facility from the ground up presented us with a unique opportunity to invest in the welfare of our local community and the prosperity of California's business owners," said State Fund President Jan Frank. "The construction of a green facility is one step in State Fund's larger effort to implement cost effective technologies to help us reduce energy consumption, shrink our carbon footprint, and introduce more environmentally friendly practices into the workplace."

In addition to reducing waste by using recycled building materials, State Fund diverted 75 percent of construction waste away from landfills. The building's water consumption was reduced by more than 40 percent through the use of low flow toilets and other technologies. The building's energy performance is more than an 18 percent improvement over Title 24, California's energy efficiency standards for residential and non-residential buildings.

Other highlights of the Vacaville campus include use of:

-- 300kW renewable photovoltaic panels that will reduce carbon dioxide emissions;

-- Low-emitting materials, such as adhesives, sealants, paints, carpet and wood;

-- Energy efficient light fixtures and lamps throughout 80 percent of the campus, as well as energy efficient HVAC and electrical equipment;

-- And server virtualization technology in the data center that reduces the number of servers.

"I am proud that State Fund is taking steps to minimize its environmental impact, and we will continue to identify areas where we can enhance our environmental awareness," Frank said. "I want to thank the State Fund employees, business partners and community resources whose enthusiasm and support contributed to the successful completion of our new green facility."

In America, It's Grown Only In Rio Vista

In America, It's Grown Only In Rio Vista
Vegetable Has Become Unusual Holiday Favorite
October 29, 2008

RIO VISTA, Calif. -- What vegetable is grown -- in the dark no less -- in Rio Vista and nowhere else in the U.S.?

It's endive lettuce, and it is grown inside complete darkness at California Vegetable Specialties, the only endive facility in the country.

The Rio Vista facility will send out 3,000 boxes of endive on busy days.

But don't call California Vegetable Specialties a processing plant, endive farmer Rich Collins said.

"We're a farm. We're farming here," Collins said. "We just happen to farm inside in the dark."

The lettuce, which comes from the chicory root, is packed with nutrition, Collins said.

"We grow a chicory root in the field, and we take that root from the field, harvest it about 6-inches in length with a bud on top," Collins said. "Then we grow that plant again in a dark growing room called the forcing room."

The roots then sprout white or red leaves in about four weeks.

The lettuce, which has become an unusual holiday favorite, is then rushed to restaurants and markets where it can be used for a myriad of food dishes.

"It can be used as hors d'oeuvres, each leaf as a carrier or boat," Collins said. "It's a wonderful salad and it can also be cooked."

UC Davis received a record $586,181,880 in research funds for the

University of California, Davis
October 30, 2008

RESEARCH FUNDS TOP HALF-BILLION DOLLARS FOR FOURTH YEAR


UC Davis received a record $586,181,880 in research funds for the
2007-8 fiscal year that ended June 30, the fourth consecutive year that research funding exceeded the half-billion-dollar mark. This figure represents an increase of $54 million, or 10 percent over the previous year's figure.

Some examples of grants awarded in the past fiscal year include up to
$3.1 million over five years from the National Science Foundation to train graduate students in biofuels and biotechnology, $768,000 over three years from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop promising technology for solar panels, and $600,000 from the National Institutes of Health to study the links between vitamin D deficiency and disease in vulnerable populations.

"At UC Davis, we are experiencing tremendous momentum. It is through the excellence of our community of scholars that research funding has reached a new high, even during a period of tightening research funding nationwide," said Barry Klein, vice chancellor for research at UC Davis.

"Our campus has transformed itself over the past 100 years and has served as an engine for innovation and for ideas that have improved the quality of life for people everywhere. As we enter our second century, we will continue our dedication to discover what matters to society," Klein said.

The total includes funding from grants and contracts awarded to the university to support research, but not philanthropic gifts, which are counted separately.

Awards include both direct costs -- dollars directed to specific research projects to pay, for example, for researchers' salaries and laboratory supplies; and "indirect" costs that are awarded by agencies to fund research infrastructure, such as upkeep and utility costs for research laboratories.

Nearly half of the total research funds, over $287 million, came from the federal government, an increase of more than 11 percent over the previous year. Of that total, the Department of Health and Human Services provided $175 million, primarily through the National Institutes of Health. The National Science Foundation provided $42 million.

Other federal departments and agencies that sponsored research programs included the U.S. departments of Agriculture ($26.3 million), Energy ($12.3 million), Interior ($6.8 million), Defense
($4.6 million), Education ($3.8 million), and State ($3.1 million).

UC Davis also received research funding from other sponsors, including the state of California, $108 million; private business, $50 million; other institutes of higher education, $30 million; and foundations, $30 million.

The following amounts are award totals listed by administering college and school. Over 29 percent of the funds awarded to UC Davis,
$172 million, went to the School of Medicine. The College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences received $94 million; the College of Engineering, $78 million; the School of Veterinary Medicine, $78 million; and the College of Biological Sciences, $49 million. Within the College of Letters and Science, the Division of Mathematical and Physical Sciences received $27 million; the Division of Social Sciences, $9 million; and the Division of Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies, $6 million. Organized research units reporting to the Office of Research received $45 million.

Research funding totals were calculated on the basis of dollars transferred to the university during the 2007-8 fiscal year. Some agencies commit to funding multiyear projects but only actually fund one year at a time. In those cases, the grant would be counted in annual increments, in which case funds are counted in the year received. In other cases, the funding agency provides all the funds up front, and all the funds are counted in the first year of funding but not in subsequent years.

Using a slightly different measure, UC Davis ranked 10th among public universities and 16th overall among U.S. universities in research and development expenditures in fiscal year 2006-7, according to statistics compiled by the National Science Foundation.

Additional information:
* Office of Research <http://research.ucdavis.edu/>


Media contact(s):
* Andy Fell, UC Davis News Service, (530) 752-4533, ahfell@ucdavis.edu


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Copart is tops

Copart is tops
Article Launched: 10/30/2008

Copart is once again listed as a leader among small companies, making Forbes Top 200 Small Companies list for the ninth consecutive year.

The firm, with a facility in Fairfield, was No. 79 on the list - moving up the list from its 140th position last year.

To qualify for the list, companies must have sales between $5 million and $750 million and a stock price of $5 as of Sept. 29. The ranking is based on return on equity, sales growth and profit growth during the past 12 months.

"We are very proud of making Forbes ... list again," said Copart President Jay Adair.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

IMAX screen to open Oct. 31 at Fairfield theater

IMAX screen to open Oct. 31 at Fairfield theater
By Ben Antonius | Daily Republic | October 23, 2008

FAIRFIELD - Less than a month after it was announced, IMAX and Regal Entertainment Group will debut their new theater in Fairfield on Halloween.

An IMAX screen, the first in Solano County, will open at Edwards Theaters Oct. 31, debuting with a screening of 'Eagle Eye: The IMAX Experience.' Edwards Theaters is a 16-screen complex located in Westfield Solano mall in Fairfield.

Regal announced plans on Oct. 3 to convert one screen each at Edwards and 11 other theaters to the IMAX format. It involves a much larger screen, an amped-up sound system and a digital projector, marketing manager Robbie Arrington said.

'It is bigger, louder, more in-your-face and its more of an experience,' Arrington said via telephone from Regal's headquarters in Tennessee.

The project is part of a joint venture between Regal and IMAX, which will increase Regal's total number of IMAX theaters to 52 nationwide by the end of 2010. The project also involves converting screens at theaters in Stockton and in El Dorado Hills outside Sacramento.

The decision to bring IMAX equipment to Fairfield stemmed from the success of Edwards Theaters and the location between Sacramento and San Francisco, which are the next-nearest places with IMAX screens, company officials said previously.

See the complete story at the Daily Republic online.

Suisun City opens first phase of McCoy Creek trail

Suisun City opens first phase of McCoy Creek trail
By Ian Thompson | DAILY REPUBLIC | October 23, 2008



Allan and Jennifer Deal, of Benicia, walk on the new McCoy Creek trail in Suisun City after an opening ceremony Thursday morning for the 1/2 mile stretch of trail between Pintail Drive and Highway 12. Allan Deal is a member of the Solano Transportation Authority's pedestrian advisory committee. Photo by Brad Zweerink

SUISUN CITY - It may not rank with Davis as far as being pedestrian and bicyclist friendly, but Suisun City is pushing hard to make itself one of the more bike and pedestrian-friendly cities in Solano County.

City officials opened the first half-mile of the McCoy Creek bicycle and pedestrian trail between Highway 12 and Pintail Drive Thursday. The city's still-growing network of bike paths, which are nearly 3 miles long, will help make Suisun City a healthier city, Mayor Pete Sanchez said.

'The more people that bike and walk, the more healthier they will be,' Sanchez said during a small ribbon-cutting ceremony largely attended by city and Solano Transportation Authority officials.

While Vacaville has nearly nine miles of bike and pedestrian paths, the much smaller Suisun City, with its two miles of bike paths, has most bike paths per street mile.

STA Executive Director Daryl Halls said Suisun City has long been the most dogged in its efforts to create bike paths that will allow residents to cross the city without using their cars.

The cost of the 10-foot-wide trail is $300,000, with the money coming from grants administered by the STA and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission.

The trail will eventually extend another mile to follow McCoy Creek and Laurel Creek to Blossom Road. There are also longer-range plans to eventually extend it to Railroad Avenue.

Just when the other portion of the bike path, which is divided into three more phases, gets completed entirely depends on when Suisun City gets more grants.

'We are already moving to get funds for phase II,' said Councilman Mike Segala, who is also a member of bicycle advisory committee member.

Councilman Mike Hudson called the latest addition 'a project for the neighborhoods' that will provide more opportunity for exercise and mobility for residents.

This is not the last of the city's bicycle and pedestrian path projects. Crews are laying the foundations for a half-mile bike path and pedestrian bridge that will allow residents to ride from Marina Boulevard to the north end of Main Street.

'We hope to finish it by January,' Public Works Management Analyst Alysa Majer said.

See the complete story at the Daily Republic online.

Italian deli, yogurt shop to open in downtown

Italian deli, yogurt shop to open in downtown
By Ben Antonius | Daily Republic | October 25, 2008



Construction worker Matthew Johnston, left, works on building the Canepa Delicatesson on Texas Street in downtown Fairfield Friday morning. The restaurant is expected to open in early December. Photo by Brad Zweerink

FAIRFIELD - John Costanzo has big plans for downtown Fairfield.

The developer is surging forward with his second Texas Street project, this time reviving a long-empty county office near the intersection with Jefferson Street. Stonefield Place, as Costanzo calls it, is envisioned as a counterpart to MacInnis Corner, his Starbucks-anchored building across the street.

'I am really bucking the trend because most buildings are losing tenants right now,' Costanzo said. 'My wife and I have been really aggressive in trying to draw tenants and create an overall nice atmosphere.'

The building will be anchored by Canepa Delicatessen, an old world-style Italian deli run by Gigi and Raymond Canepa, the owners of Vintage Caffe.

The delicatessen is expected to open by late November, Canepa said. She said the vision is a place that will sell sandwiches and pastas, artisan salami and cheese, and prepackaged meals.

'There's nothing like it (in the area),' Canepa said. '(It will be) more health conscious, more natural products, but I still want to make sure we stay with the old world atmosphere.'

Stonefield Place will also house a frozen yogurt shop called Main Street Yogurt and a few non-retail tenants in the seven-tenant building, Costanzo said. Across the street, Costanzo is awaiting the grand opening of Big Italian Pizzeria.

The new businesses, particularly Canepa, will be 'something different' than what already exists downtown, Costanzo insisted.

See the complete story at the Daily Republic online.

Suisun searches for ways to promote its identity

Suisun searches for ways to promote its identity
By Ian Thompson | DAILY REPUBLIC | October 24, 2008 19:43



The Suisun City Historic Waterfront Business Improvement District recently had 65-foot-high sign painted on the side of a water tank north of Highway 12 to promote the city's downtown. Photo by Chris Jordan

SUISUN CITY - Suisun City's waterfront district wants Highway 12's passing population of commuters to pay more attention to it.

And, by paying more attention, stop and spend some money there eating or shopping.

It's why both the city and its merchants' association is undertaking a series of projects to draw more attention to the heart of that town.

A week ago, the Suisun City Historic Waterfront Business Improvement District painted a 65-foot-high blue sign on the water tank just north of Highway 12 extolling waterfront Suisun City's attractions.

Suisun City Hall is within two months of getting new, more noticeable highway signs from Caltrans that specifically announce to drivers they are approaching the entrances to the downtown.

Plans for two 14-foot-high monuments featuring a ship's captain at the steering wheel of a stylized vessel are in the works to be built at both entryways to the city.

These are all part of the plans to make Suisun City and its downtown waterfront more than just a passing blur to an estimated 2.8 million cars that use Highway 12 every year.

'A lot of people who commute who don't know what they are commuting through,' said Garry Rowe, president of the Historic Waterfront BID. 'That is the challenge of letting them know we have a waterfront with dining and shopping.'

Efforts to get Suisun City more visibility is 'the number one priority,' Suisun City Mayor Pete Sanchez said.

City Councilman Mike Segala wryly said a previous Caltrans sign that stated what services the downtown offered had a nasty habit of getting knocked down by drunk drivers.

Caltrans' replacement signs did little more than simply announce the city.

New Caltrans signs that the city successfully lobbied for will show dining, picnicking and boating services are available. They are expected to be up before the end of the year.

'We needed to get our own identity back on Highway 12,' Segala said, adding the numbered designation to the off ramp exit sign 'puts us on a lot of maps.'

Rowe expects to get about five years of use out of the eye-catching water tank sign before the tank's owner, the Solano Irrigation District, may tear it down.

'It looks great,' said Sanchez who had suggested the BID's sign be even bigger than it is and be more colorful to attract attention. 'We have something that tells people where we are.'

Getting passing drivers to notice the water is difficult because there aren't a lot of advertising opportunities along Highway 12, Rowe said.

These latest efforts and plans for the monument sculptures will help.

Walking neighborhoods during his election campaign, City Councilman Mike Hudson said he realized some Suisun City residents were so used to driving to Fairfield that they didn't even realize the city had a downtown.

'It's part of our commitment to the businesses there to get them visibility,' Hudson said.

'We want people to know there is a downtown area,' City Councilman Sam Derting said. 'Too many people have come along Highway 12 and wondered how to get to downtown.'

The BID's biggest goal is getting all the development done and giving people reasons to come, Rowe said.

The waterfront, with successful restaurants such as La Cabana, Joy of Eating and Athenian Grill, has already attracted more people.

See the complete story at the Daily Republic online.

State Fund opens $77M ‘green’ office in Vacaville

State Fund opens $77M ‘green’ office in Vacaville
Sacramento Business Journal
October 28, 2008

State Compensation Insurance Fund, a quasi-public workers’ compensation insurer based in San Francisco, celebrated the opening Tuesday of a new $77 million “green” campus in Vacaville.

It consists of three 85,000-square-foot buildings that house 750 employees who previously worked in leased space in Fairfield, officials said.

Two additional 85,000-square-foot buildings are also part of the long-term plan for the 32-acre site in the Vaca Valley Business Park, according to State Fund’s real estate manager, Denise Burian. But plans to build the additional buildings by 2011 might be delayed, she said.

HOK was the architect for the project; Milpitas-based Devon Construction handled construction. Burian said construction costs were “slightly under $300 per square foot” for the approximately 255,000-square-foot project.

State Fund’s leased Fairfield office is being closed and replaced by the new Vacaville location, said State Fund spokeswoman Jennifer Vargen. Some of the workers in the new facility are information technology staffers, but the majority are customer service/call center employees from Fairfield and back-office workers who handle claims processing, Burian said.

State Fund broke ground on the project in December 2006. At that time, officials described a two-phase, five-building campus that would ultimately house 1,200 workers in 434,375 square feet of space. The first phase of the project was to include two buildings housing about 750 workers, State Fund said at the time. Instead, the first phase was boosted to three buildings, and the second phase may be delayed.

The site is located south of Genentech’s Vacaville facility, and east of Interstate 505.

State Fund said materials once destined for landfills made up more than 20 percent of the building materials used in its construction, including concrete and cork and rubber flooring. Officials expect the site to win Silver LEED certification early next year, according to an Oct. 28 statement.

Among other “green” elements, the new structure features solar panels, low-emitting materials such as adhesives, paints and carpets; energy-efficient light fixtures, lamps, heating and cooling systems and other electrical equipment; and “server virtualization” technology that reduces the number of servers needed to support the facility.

The opportunity to build a new office building from the ground up gave State Fund a chance to go green, president Jan Frank said in the statement. Frank called the project “one step” in the company’s larger efforts to reduce energy consumption, shrink its carbon footprint “and introduce more environmentally friendly practices into the workplace.”

In addition to reducing waste by using recycled building materials, the company said, State Fund diverted 75 percent of construction waste away from landfills to recycling vendors. It also reduced the building’s water consumption requirements by more than 40 percent, by incorporating low-flow toilets, waterless urinals, and an irrigation system using non-potable water.

As a result, officials said, the building’s energy performance is 18 percent better than required by California’s Title 24 energy efficiency standards for residential and non-residential buildings.

State Fund is one of the state’s largest workers’ compensation insurers, generating nearly $2.3 billion in 2007 premium volume.

FedEx to ship Benicia operation to Fairfield

FedEx to ship Benicia operation to Fairfield
By Ben Antonius | Daily Republic | October 27, 2008



FedEx plans to open a hub in this 330,000-square-foot warehouse on Fermi Drive in Fairfield. Photo by Brad Zweerink

FAIRFIELD - Shipping giant FedEx plans to open a hub in Fairfield, city officials announced.

The move means Fairfield once again has a tenant for what has been one of Solano County's largest vacant industrial properties, a 330,000-square-foot warehouse in the Cordelia area.

'It is good to see we have got a good user in there with good, quality jobs,' said Curt Johnston, assistant director of Fairfield's department of Economic Development.

The move will involve FedEx Ground Package Systems relocating its current warehouse in Benicia to an existing facility on Fermi Drive in Fairfield. The Fermi Drive building is about triple the size of the Benicia facility, and the move comes as FedEx Ground conducts a nationwide expansion in anticipation of growth in its daily shipping volume.

The massive, high-ceiling warehouse is on the east side of Pascal Court and almost directly north of the Rodriguez High School football field. The property has been vacant since glass container producer Saint-Gobain moved to an even larger property on the east side of Fairfield, Johnston said.

Officials with FedEx and real estate broker Cushman & Wakefield could not be reached for comment Monday.

It is not yet clear precisely how many people the operation will employ, nor whether it will involve any new hires beyond those who already work at the Benicia facility, Johnston said.

FedEx Ground has a 10-year lease for the property and plans to open its facility in spring 2009. Before it occupies the site, FedEx intends to build additional office space on the site and to increase the number of loading doors, city officials said.

See the complete story at the Daily Republic online.

State Fund opens new campus in Vacaville

State Fund opens new campus in Vacaville
By Melissa Murphy
Article Launched: 10/29/2008



Vehicles park under the shade of 1,050 solar panels in the parking lot at a newly completed building in Vacaville. (Rick Roach/The Reporter)

Don't be fooled by the new beige building east of Interstate 505 near I-80, it's actually "green."

From the building materials and furniture at the new State Compensation Insurance Fund facility to the plates and eating utensils used in its cafeteria, it was all chosen with one thing in mind -- the environment.

Although about 750 employees moved to the new location earlier this month, Tuesday morning was the official grand opening of the State Fund building.

State Fund is a self-supporting, nonprofit enterprise that provides workers' compensation insurance to California employers at cost with no financial obligation to the public. The new facility will house employees who work on claims and policy processing and information



HOK Project architect Zorana Bosnick (right) speaks at Tuesday's grand opening of the State Compensation Insurance Fund, Vacaville campus. (Rick Roach/The Reporter) technology.

"The construction of a green facility is one step in State Fund's larger effort to implement cost-effective technologies to help us reduce energy consumption, shrink our carbon footprint and introduce more environmentally friendly practices into the workplace," sad Jan Frank, president of State Fund.

Garbage once destined for landfills now comprises more than 20 percent of the building materials used in the new campus, Frank said.

On top of that, State Fund diverted 75 percent of construction waste away from landfills.

Mayor Len Augustine said he was thrilled that such a business like State Fund was able to locate in Vacaville.

"It's a tremendous win for our city," he said. "This represents a real success story. We were in the midst of real competition. It's great to have such an outstanding company in our city."

State Fund Board Member Vincent Mudd said Vacaville was one of seven cities considered.

Although the company is based in San Francisco, Mudd explained that there was definitely a need to build in a location where the majority of its employees live.

"It's a tremendously friendly and helpful city," he said. "Vacaville was clearly at the top."

Even after construction, the new building continues to save, for instance, recycling non-potable water in landscaping in order to reduce water waste and reducing water consumption by installing smart flow sinks, toilets and urinals.

"People need to realize that when we save, we save it forever," Mudd said. "We're part of history."

State Fund is actually receiving slightly more than $1 million in incentives from Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

The facility alone has 300 kilowatt renewable photovoltaic panels, which convert sunlight to electricity, and that reduces carbon dioxide emissions.

Officials are hoping that the facility will earn a Silver Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification early next year.

The State Fund campus also includes amenities that encourage employees to save, such as, showers and bicycle racks to encourage alternate ways of getting to work.

Other amenities include two bus lines and preferred parking for alternative vehicles and charging stations for electric and hybrid vehicles.

Fairfield, California's Strategic Location Continues to Attract Businesses

Fairfield, California's Strategic Location Continues to Attract Businesses

FAIRFIELD, Calif., Oct. 20 -- Fairfield, California's strategic location and available space for large facilities continue to be a draw for businesses. The Bay Area city, located halfway between San Francisco and Sacramento, will soon welcome three national companies -- FedEx Ground Package Systems, Inc., Kiewit Corporation, and a Texas Roadhouse restaurant.

"Despite today's tough economic times, Fairfield continues to be successful," says Eve Somjen, Fairfield's director of community development. "Businesses choose to locate in Fairfield because of our excellent location. Companies of all sizes are able to find appropriate space to meet their requirements at competitive prices, and we also have affordably priced housing."

FedEx Ground Package Systems, Inc. recently signed a 10-year lease at 5191 Fermi Drive in Fairfield for 330,750 square feet of high-ceiling warehouse space. The site is one of Solano County's largest industrial properties, and is triple the size of the company's current space in neighboring Benicia, CA. FedEx intends to build additional office space on the site and to increase the number of loading doors. Spring 2009 is the planned target move-in date.

Another recently announced transaction is the development of a new 30,000-square foot office and administrative center on a 3.37-acre parcel at 4700 Business Center Drive for Kiewit Corporation, an Omaha-based provider of construction, engineering and mining services to clients nationwide. The company is developing plans and designs for the new structure, but has not yet announced a timetable for construction or occupancy.

Texas Roadhouse, Inc., a Louisville, Kentucky-based casual-dining chain restaurant specializing in steaks and promoting a western theme, is scheduled to open in Spring 2009. It will occupy 7,100 square feet at 3333 North Texas Street across from the Raley's shopping center at the site of the former Lou's Junction restaurant. Texas Roadhouse is a rapidly growing chain with over 300 locations in 44 states. Fairfield will be the restaurant's fourth California location. It currently has restaurants in Elk Grove, Tracy and Union City.

"The city of Fairfield has done a great job of providing a business-friendly environment in which we will be able to succeed," says Travis Doster, spokesperson for Texas Roadhouse.

About Fairfield
Fairfield (pop. 106,000) is a growing community with a multitude of commercial and residential development opportunities. Located mid-way between San Francisco and Sacramento, Fairfield is just 20 miles north of Concord, 38 miles northeast of Oakland, 14 miles southeast of the Napa Valley, 45 miles southwest of Sacramento and 42 miles northeast of San Francisco.

Fairfield Offers Important Business Benefits

Fairfield continues to appeal to retail and commercial entities seeking to grow their businesses for many reasons: an accessible Bay Area location, abundant space, value-priced real estate, a diverse workforce, and a unique set of regional amenities. For additional information on the city of Fairfield, visit http://www.Fairfield4Business.com

SOURCE City of Fairfield, CA

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Vallejo's CA Maritime academy to utilize sun's rays


Maritime academy to utilize sun's rays
By TONY BURCHYNS/Times-Herald staff writer
Article Launched: 10/28/2008 09:13:56 AM PDT


PLANNER Roger Jaeckel, left, and California Maritime University President William B. Eisenhardt talk on a hillside looking over the roof of the Upper Residence Hall on the CMA campus where new solar generation panels will be installed. Courtesy photo A California green-energy project that promises to remove the equivalent of the pollution created by 49,000 cars by 2015 will include the deployment of solar arrays atop California Maritime Academy's largest dormitory.
Early planning has begun for the installations, which will be part of an ongoing state initiative to cut by 20 percent the grid-based energy purchases for state-owned buildings by 2015.

"A significant number of our buildings date back to the 1940s when this campus was first established at Vallejo," noted Mark Nickerson, Cal Maritime vice president for administration and finance. "In recent years, we have been systematically upgrading boilers, replacing inefficient windows, and moving to the use of more energy-efficient lighting. It's not glamorous work, but the payoffs in today's climate of soaring energy costs are significant."

The panels will be placed atop the school's largest dorm, the Upper Residence Hall, said Facilities Planner Roger Jaeckel, who is heading up the project working with solar experts.

Under a state competitive bidding process, Maryland-based SunEddison will finance, build and operate solar arrays for the 23-campus California State University system, officials said.

The campuses will buy the energy generated at prices equal to or less than current retail rates.

Len Pettis, chief of plant, energy and utilities for the CSU Chancellor's Office, said the agreements will generate zero greenhouse gases - an offset of almost 9,500
metric tons of carbon dioxide and equivalent to removing nearly 49,000 cars from the road.

"There are numerous opportunities for this campus to save energy," spokesman Doug Webster said. "Especially when you recognize that many of our buildings date back to World War II and the years thereafter."

Other recent retooling efforts include new lights and ballasts, new boilers and a gas-fired, pier-side boiler to heat the school's training ship and water supply.

The school is also conserving water with toilets that use 1.6 gallons per flush instead of 3.6.

Said Webster: "Thus we save not only water, but the energy required to bring (the water) to campus."

• E-mail Tony Burchyns at

Friday, October 24, 2008

Skye Technical Services, Inc. has chosen the Green Valley Executive Center building at 5030 Business Center Drive in Fairfield to be their headquarter

October 22, 2008


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Patti Magee, Executive Assistant
pmagee@WisemanCo.com
707.427.1212


The Wiseman Company is pleased to announce that Skye Technical Services, Inc. has chosen the Green Valley Executive Center building at 5030 Business Center Drive in Fairfield to be their headquarters. Kirk Hull of The Wiseman Company represented both the Lessor and the Lessee in the transaction.

Skye Technical Services is a division of Integrated Project Services, Inc. which was organized in 1989 and provides a full range of professional design, validation, construction and consulting services for modern manufacturing and sophisticated support facilities for entities primarily in the pharmaceutical, bio-tech and related life sciences industries.

The Wiseman Company is a full-service commercial real estate firm offering brokerage, development, investment and management services to Solano, Napa and Yolo counties. For more information on The Wiseman Company, contact Kirk Hull at 707.427.1212 or khull@WisemanCo.com.

IMAX screen to open Oct. 31 at Fairfield, CA Edwards Theater

IMAX screen to open Oct. 31 at Fairfield theater
By Ben Antonius | Daily Republic | October 23, 2008 17:43
FAIRFIELD - Less than a month after it was announced, IMAX and Regal Entertainment Group will debut their new theater in Fairfield on Halloween.

An IMAX screen, the first in Solano County, will open at Edwards Theaters Oct. 31, debuting with a screening of 'Eagle Eye: The IMAX Experience.' Edwards Theaters is a 16-screen complex located in Westfield Solano mall in Fairfield.

Regal announced plans on Oct. 3 to convert one screen each at Edwards and 11 other theaters to the IMAX format. It involves a much larger screen, an amped-up sound system and a digital projector, marketing manager Robbie Arrington said.

'It is bigger, louder, more in-your-face and its more of an experience,' Arrington said via telephone from Regal's headquarters in Tennessee.

The project is part of a joint venture between Regal and IMAX, which will increase Regal's total number of IMAX theaters to 52 nationwide by the end of 2010. The project also involves converting screens at theaters in Stockton and in El Dorado Hills outside Sacramento.

The decision to bring IMAX equipment to Fairfield stemmed from the success of Edwards Theaters and the location between Sacramento and San Francisco, which are the next-nearest places with IMAX screens, company officials said previously.

Arrington declined to discuss specific attendance figures for IMAX screens versus traditional ones that use 35 millimeter film, but he said they are typically popular with moviegoers.

'It is a significant increase in attendance for our IMAX locations than our 35 millimeters,' he said. 'They like it, they wish every film was on it.'

Reach Ben Antonius at 427-6977 or bantonius@dailyrepublic.net.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Suisun City Water Tank Tagged ...... sort of

Suisun City Water Tank Tagged ...... sort of



A crew tagged the Suisun-Solano Water Agency water tank on Wednesday with bold blue lettering.

Hired by the Suisun City Historic Waterfront Business Improvement District, the crew from Clear Image Sign Co., located in Suisun City, is installing one of the largest signs to ever grace a major Suisun City entrance.

"This is something our members have been asking us to do for some time now," said Garry Rowe, president of the Suisun City BID. "Waterfront District merchants said they needed more visibility from Highway 12, and this was one way we could start to accomplish that goal."

The sign will be clearly visible to the tens of thousands of daily Highway 12, and should end the age old complaint that people drove clear through Suisun City without realizing they'd even been in the city. The massive paint job should be completed by Friday.

The emblem on the water tank will be that of the Waterfront District, a new identity for the Old Town/Downtown area that the Suisun City BID and the City are working hard to promote as a regional destination for high-quality dining across a number of cuisine choices.

The Waterfront District also is a fantastic place to locate your business, whether you need retail or office space.

Comcast consolidates offices into new operations center

Comcast consolidates offices into new operations center
By Ben Antonius | Daily Republic | October 16, 2008

FAIRFIELD - Cable giant Comcast will unveil a new facility in Fairfield that could bring in hundreds of jobs from surrounding cities.

The company is planning a private grand opening and ribbon-cutting event Saturday to celebrate the debut of its Fairfield operations center. The facility will consolidate locations previously operated by Comcast in Fairfield, Napa, San Rafael and Vallejo.

Read more in the Daily Republic or at www.dailyrepublic.com.

County offers phone service for immediate assistance

County offers phone service for immediate assistance
Daily Republic Staff | October 16, 2008

FAIRFIELD - Answers to questions about Solano County government services and programs are just a phone call away any day of the week.

The county launched its Solano311 Customer Service Center on Sept. 2 and thus far has received more 21,500 calls, according to a county press release. Customer service representatives are available from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

The bulk of those calls have been received from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, but county officials urge residents to take advantage of the service before and after work and on weekends.

'That means if you have questions about the recent property tax statement or where your polling place is this election, you can call after dinner when it is convenient for you,' said Ira Rosenthal, director of the county's Department of Information Technology.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

First 5 Solano wins CSAC Challenge Award

First 5 Solano wins CSAC Challenge Award
Preventive, intervention approach earns award for innovation in government


Focusing on programs that provide preventive and early intervention services has earned a Solano County agency an award for innovation in county government.

First 5 Solano, along with its community partners that implement the programs it funds, will accept the California State Association of Counties 2008 Challenge Award at the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 7. Only 10 such awards were made this year out of 255 entries from all over the state.

“First 5 Solano targets services that make a fundamental difference in the lives of children and their families and, thus, the entire community,” said Supervisor Barbara Kondylis. “By investing in front-end services, we are avoiding unnecessary human hardship that would cost millions of dollars down the road if not addressed now.”

The Challenge Award recognizes how First 5 Solano targets its funding on such programs as the Integrated Family Support Initiative, BabyFirst Solano and School Readiness. First 5 Solano calculates this strategy of focusing on front-end, prevention and early intervention services may have saved as much as $3.7 million in long-term foster care and pregnancy-related health care costs.

The Integrated Family Support Initiative (IFSI) targets high-risk families and provides home-visiting services orchestrated by a multi-disciplinary team that includes a Child Protective Services social worker, a Public Health nurse, Substance Abuse staff and a Family Resource Center specialist. In FY 2006/07, 98 percent of the 133 children served by IFSI remained out of foster care placement and in their homes and communities.

“IFSI helps families with a much higher risk of ending up in the foster care system to stay together,” said Christina Arrostuto, executive director of First 5 Solano Children and Families Commission. Besides the direct costs of foster care, there are court, medical and developmental/education-related costs, which Arrostuto points out far exceed the $924,000 annual cost of the IFSI program.

The BabyFirst Solano program targets pregnant and parenting women with documented health disparities in birth outcomes (premature birth, low birth weight and infant mortality). The target groups include teens, African-Americans and women using or at risk of substance abuse during pregnancy.

In FY 2006/07, 22 babies were born substance-free to the high-risk mothers served by BabyFirst Solano, representing savings of $1.7 million based on the average Neonatal Intensive Care Unit costs of $78,000 per infant. The savings exceeds the entire $1.4 million cost of the BabyFirst Solano program.

In addition, the preterm birth rate for BabyFirst teens last year was 5 percent, lower than the California rate of 12 percent and the Healthy People 2010 target of 8 percent.

First 5 Solano also funds school readiness programs that are producing increased numbers of at-risk children who have mastered cognitive and behavioral competencies by the time they start Kindergarten, which avoids special education costs. Program sites are in Dixon, Fairfield-Suisun, Vacaville and Vallejo school districts.

“The First 5 Commission could not have achieved the program results that earned this award without our community partners,” Arrostuto said. She noted that the County Health and Social Services Department, local school districts, the Children’s Network of Solano County and the Family Resource Centers in every city in Solano “are First 5’s ‘early warning system’ for young children’s safety, healthy-development and family security. She added, “This award is focused on saving taxpayer dollars, which is a fine achievement, but the savings in human costs are priceless.”

In 2007, First 5 received a CSAC Merit Award for its strategy of leveraged funding that nearly doubled the funds received by grantees.

Released: Oct. 3, 2008

Supes OK valley area subdivision

Supes OK valley area subdivision
By Danny Bernardini/ DBernardini@TheReporter.com
Article Launched: 10/15/2008

After decades of discussions and several identities, the Rockville Trails Estates was approved Tuesday by county supervisors.

The Solano County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 to amend the general plan to allow several elements of the subdivision in the hills between Green Valley and Suisun Valley. Supervisors Barbara Kondylis and Jim Spering voted against the project.

Supervisors voted 3-2 a week ago to approve the environmental documents surrounding the project. Tuesday's vote signaled final approval for the subdivision that has been floated since the late 1970s -- under several different names -- and had been before the board and Solano County Planning Commission several times in the last two years.

Concerns about water supply have been stressed by both the planning commissioners and supervisors each time it has gone before them.

The project includes nearly 1,600 acres, including 370 homes along with 800 acres of open space and a 7-acre neighborhood park. The developers also plan to include an on-site water supply system, a wastewater treatment plant and a fire station.

Similar to the meeting a week ago, the chamber was filled with Green Valley residents who spoke for more than an hour about concerns involving water and other environmental issues.

Many in the crowd urged the board to delay a decision until after November's election. Linda Seifert, former president of the Green Valley Landowners Association, will be on the board and Supervisor Mike Reagan is up for re-election.

Seifert, who had remained quiet on the issue leading up to Tuesday's meeting, broke her silence and addressed the board.

"I've decided I have a few things to say," she said. "We seem to be getting bogged down in several details. The real issue is water, water, water. Overall, this is all about water. It's about a bad project, in a bad location, at a bad time."

Supervisors agreed there is some issue with water supply and added a provision regarding the topic before voting. The provision states that prior to approval of the final map, the applicant must provide $500,000 to help the Solano Irrigation District and Vallejo Lakes Water System create a back-up water delivery system in case of an emergency.

Spering, who declined to comment on why he voted against the environmental impact reports a week ago, spoke publicly about his concerns over water supply. He said he couldn't vote for the project without the creation of an off-site back-up water supply.

He also had some words for those in the crowd. He said many of the reasons folks gave for protesting the development were disingenuous.

"I don't agree with a lot of the testimony given here today," Spering said. "It almost comes across that 'I've got mine and I don't want anyone else to get theirs.' "

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Capitol Corridor Posts highest-ever ridership September ( Fairfield-Suisiun City has a stop on the Capitol Corridor)

Hi, I am Tim Johnson and welcome to the California Business Minute.

Amtrak ridership in the federal fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 increased to 28,716,407,
marking the sixth straight year of gains and setting a record for the most passengers using
Amtrak since it started in 1971. Ridership on Amtrak’s California routes continued to climb
in September, the last month of the federal fiscal year.

The San Jose-San Francisco/Oakland-Sacramento-Auburn Capitol Corridor posted its
highest-ever September ridership, carrying 144,747 passengers, up 24.7 percent compared
with September 2007. The corridor also posted record on-time performance of 93.8 percent.
Ridership for the full fiscal year rose 16.6 percent to 1.7 million.
Ridership on the San Diego-Los Angeles-San Luis Obispo Pacific Surfliner rose 1.7 percent
to 215,497 passengers. FY2008 ridership totaled 2.9 million, up 7.1 percent vs. FY2007.

The San Francisco/Oakland-Sacramento-Bakersfield San Joaquins boosted year-over-year
ridership 15.2 percent in September, carrying 75,844 passengers. For the full fiscal year, ridership
rose 18 percent to 929,611.

California comprises nearly 20 percent of the customers that ride Amtrak nationally.


I am Tim Johnson and this has been the California Business Minute.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Copart moves up in ranking of best small companies

Copart moves up in ranking of best small companies
Daily Republic staff | | October 10, 2008

FAIRFIELD - Forbes magazine has again ranked Copart among the top 200 small companies in the country, marking the ninth consecutive year that the Fairfield-based company has earned such recognition.

Copart ranked 79th on Forbes' list, which was released Wednesday, after being No. 140 in 2007.

'Copart continues to stay on top because we continue to be change-centric in order to meet the demands of a changing world and improve our products and services,' company President Jay Adair stated in a press release.

The ranking is based on a company's sales and profit growth over the past 12 months and also over five years, as well as its return on equity.

First 5 Solano awarded for excellence

First 5 Solano awarded for excellence
Article Launched: 10/13/2008

Focusing on programs that provide preventive and early intervention services has earned a Solano County agency an award for innovation in county government.

First 5 Solano, along with its community partners that implement the programs it funds, accepted the California State Association of Counties 2008 Challenge Award at the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 7. Only 10 such awards were made this year out of 255 entries from all over the state.

"First 5 Solano targets services that make a fundamental difference in the lives of children and their families and, thus the entire community," Supervisor Barbara Kondylis said.

"By investing in front-end services, we are avoiding unnecessary human hardship that would cost millions of dollars down the road if not addressed now."

The Challenge Award recognizes how First 5 Solano targets its funding on such programs as the Integrated Family Support Initiative, BabyFirst Solano and school readiness. First 5 Solano calculates this strategy of focusing on prevention and early intervention services may have saved as much as $3.7 million in long-term foster care and pregnancy-related health care costs.

The Integrated Family Support Initiative (IFSI) targets high-risk families and provides home-visiting services orchestrated by a multi-disciplinary team that includes a Child Protective Services social worker, a Public Health nurse, substance abuse staff and a Family Resource Center specialist.

"IFSI helps families with a much higher risk of ending up in the foster care system to stay together," said Christina Arrostuto, executive director of First 5 Solano Children and Families Commission.

Besides the direct costs of foster care, there are court, medical and developmental/education-related costs, which Arrostuto said far exceed the $924,000 annual cost of the IFSI program.

The BabyFirst Solano program targets pregnant women and women with documented health disparities in birth outcomes (premature birth, low birth weight and infant mortality). The target groups include teens, African-Americans and women using or at risk of substance abuse during pregnancy.

First 5 Solano also funds school readiness programs that are producing increased numbers of at-risk children who have mastered cognitive and behavioral competencies by the time they start kindergarten, which avoids special education costs. Program sites are in Dixon, Fairfield-Suisun, Vacaville and Vallejo school districts.

"The First 5 Commission could not have achieved the program results that earned this award without our community partners," Arrostuto said.

In 2007, First 5 received a CSAC Merit Award for its strategy of leveraged funding that nearly doubled the funds received by grantees.

She noted that the County Health and Social Services Department, local school districts, the Children's Network of Solano County and the Family Resource Centers in every city in Solano "are First 5's 'early warning system' for young children's safety, healthy-development and family security. She added, "This award is focused on saving taxpayer dollars, which is a fine achievement, but the savings in human costs are priceless."

Yolo County’s draft general plan aims for major development by 2030

Friday, October 10, 2008

Yolo County plans its unincorporated future

County’s draft general plan aims for major development by 2030

Sacramento Business Journal - by Celia Lamb Staff writer

Yolo County has unveiled a draft general plan that would allow 13,400 new residential units and 1,900 acres of new commercial and industrial development in the unincorporated county by 2030.

For at least four years, county officials and developers have discussed a radical expansion of Dunnigan in the north county. The plan, covering 2,312 acres, bears that out. The truck-stop town, population 952, would add 22,000 people. That’s three times more than the current population of Winters, the county’s fourth-largest city.
The general plan’s land-use maps identify the growth areas in gray. There’s no breakdown showing whether it would have single-family homes, apartments, shopping centers, offices or industrial buildings.

“With a community of this size, it’s all of the above,” said Seth Merewitz, an attorney with McDonough, Holland & Allen PC who represents Elliott Homes Inc. and two other large landowners in that area. “We’re working on a specific plan.”
The general plan envisions slightly less growth in Madison, west of Woodland. The town of 384 people would receive 1,388 new residential units and 120 acres of commercial and industrial development.

The Madison specific plan area covers 411 acres.
Kaufman Properties Inc. owns the land on the east side of County Road 89 that would be developed for commercial and industrial use, co-owner Dan Kaufman said. Landowners on the west side of the road would build housing, and the development on the east side would create jobs for those residents, Kaufman said.

There is one potential obstacle to that plan. On Sept. 12, a creditor filed a default notice for a loan on 214 acres owned by Dunmore Homes Inc. just west of Madison. The creditor claims Dunmore is $15.7 million behind on payments.
One of the biggest commercial developments in the general plan would be built on 320 acres along Interstate 5, just west of the Sacramento River. The Ramos family wants to build a commercial and industrial complex on 100 acres it owns there, including a hotel to serve visitors who arrive at Sacramento International Airport.

County planners handed the draft general plan to the Board of Supervisors on Sept. 16.
A public comment period opened Tuesday and closes Nov. 20.

clamb@bizjournals.com | 916-558-7866

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Clorox cleaners take big share of green market (Note Clorox has a production plant in Fairfield, CA)

SFGate
Clorox cleaners take big share of green market

Ilana DeBare, Chronicle Staff Writer

Sunday, October 12, 2008
Matt Kohler is a former brand manager for the Green Works... Aram Garabedian, a Clorox scientist on the team that deve... Clorox senior scientist Steve Kong helped develop the com...

(10-11) 16:02 PDT -- Last winter, the Clorox Co. gambled that its famous name would translate well from the world of bleach into the world of environmentally friendly cleaning products.

So far, that bet is looking like a winner.

Just eight months after its introduction, Clorox's Green Works line is on track to generate first-year sales of well over $40 million. It's already outselling all other brands in the green cleaning products niche.

And perhaps most significantly, Green Works seems to be luring customers away from traditional cleaning products rather than from green rivals - expanding the overall market for green cleaners.

The Oakland company has faced some bumps in the road, including controversy over the Sierra Club's backing for Green Works and a dispute over some of Clorox's advertising claims about the product line.

But overall, observers say, Green Works' rollout has been a model for how a big consumer products corporation can successfully enter the green market.

"They did their homework, saw an opportunity with the sea change in green, and got a good product name," said Nik Modi, a stock analyst with UBS who follows Clorox.

"They've actually grown the natural cleaner category. People who weren't buying (green cleaning products) are buying them now."
Name-brand products

Clorox had historically built its $5.3 billion business on household products that were effective and affordable but not particularly green - things like bleach, Glad plastic wrap, and cleaning products sold under the brands of Formula 409, Liquid-Plumr, Pine-Sol and Tilex, as well as Clorox.

But since the arrival of CEO Donald Knauss in 2006, the company has moved into the market for natural products in a big way. In November, Clorox spent $913 million to acquire Burt's Bees, which makes beeswax-based body care products. It has also been promoting its line of Brita water filters as a greener alternative to bottled water.

And with Green Works, Clorox became the first major consumer products company to offer a line of green cleaning products - turf that had previously been limited to small firms such as Seventh Generation and San Francisco's Method Products.

Clorox made several key decisions in entering the market. First, it put considerable effort into formulating products made from 99 percent natural, non-petrochemical ingredients, rather than just slapping a green-looking label on a conventional product.

It also decided to keep the Clorox name on the new line to defuse consumer fears that green products would be less effective at cleaning.

"The lesson is not to be shy about using your brand name," said Ali Debadj, an analyst with Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. "It can bear fruit in the natural category."

Clorox benefited from the support of some large retailers like Wal-Mart, which gave Green Works some of its most visible shelf space. "They got the retailers on board and put a lot of advertising out there," said Debadj.

As a result of all this, Green Works' sales quickly shot past Clorox's longer-standing green competitors.

For instance, Green Works sold $3.4 million worth of glass cleaner in just eight months, compared with $1.1 million sold by Seventh Generation and $947,000 by Method over a full 12 months, according to Information Resources Inc., a Chicago market research firm. (Those figures don't include sales at Wal-Mart.)
Green market growing

But Method and Seventh Generation didn't see their sales drop. In fact, their share of the overall cleaning market continued to grow - a sign that Green Works was attracting people who hadn't previously bought green cleaners.

"You're never terribly excited when Goliath is entering your space, and you're David," said Eric Ryan, co-founder of Method. "But the great thing is they're bringing more attention and significant working capital to educating Americans that you can be green and effective. That's only going to grow the category."

One area where Clorox did hit some rough road was in its partnership with the Sierra Club.

The club's national leadership had agreed to let Clorox use its logo on Green Works labels in exchange for an undisclosed share of the profit.

But the move caused an uproar among members around the country who were unhappy with Clorox's overall environmental record and the Sierra Club's refusal to disclose financial details of the deal.

The controversy may ultimately have hurt the Sierra Club more than it hurt Clorox. Most of Green Works' target customers - average consumers with a mild or "light green" environmental interest - were totally unaware of the debate within the club.
Cautionary tale

"There is a cautionary tale here about building alliances," said Jeffrey Hollender, CEO of Seventh Generation. "While light green consumers may have a limited set of criteria to be met, as you move into the deeper green community, people look at the company and not just the products."

Another stumbling block for Clorox came with a complaint filed by a rival cleaning products company, S.C. Johnson.

It asked the national advertising division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus to rule on whether Clorox could legitimately claim that Green Works works "as well as conventional cleaners."

The group said in July that it was fine for Clorox to claim that Green Works got rid of most dirt as well as other cleaning products. But it told Clorox to modify its ads to avoid implying that Green Works kills germs and handles grease as well as other cleaners.

Clorox officials downplayed the impact of the ruling.

"Our formula is really strong, we are still really proud of our formula, and we are still able to communicate our message," said brand manager Emmy Berlind.

Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether Green Works will be able maintain its strong out-of-the-gate sales.

"It takes nine to 12 months to get a good feel for 'repeat' - will customers keep buying it time and time again?" said Modi.

But company officials, who have raised their sales projections six times since January, are confident. They have already added liquid dish soap to the line, and may add more products.

"We're the leader in natural home care eight months after our launch," said Berlind. "We're very, very happy."
Green and conventional cleaning product sales


E-mail Ilana DeBare at business@sfchronicle.com.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Two New Solano County Ombudsmen to Assist Agriculture

Two New County Ombudsmen to Assist Agriculture

Solano County has two new ombudsmen on board working with local farmers and ranchers to help improve the local agricultural industry.

“Solano County recognizes that agriculture is important to the overall economic, social, and environmental health of the county, and these two positions are designed to create a climate where agriculture can remain viable,” said Jim Allan, Solano County Agricultural Commissioner.

The ombudsmen are Adam Cline, Farm Assistance Revitalization and Marketing (FARM) Coordinator in the Agricultural Department, and Jim Louie, an Agricultural Principle Planner in the Resource Management Department.

Both positions were created by the Board of Supervisors after a series of recent agriculture studies and extensive outreach by the County of Solano revealed that local farmers and ranchers could benefit from increased agricultural expertise in county government.

In his role as a FARM Coordinator, Cline will serve as liaison between the County and local farmers and ranchers. At the same time, he will be working to promote and to increase marketing opportunities for Solano County agriculture.

“The more avenues farmers and ranchers have for selling their products, the more likely they can remain profitable, thus removing an incentive for farmers to sell land for development,” Cline said.

Prior to coming to the County, Cline was a local manager for a statewide cattle, beef, and hay growing operation.

As the Agricultural Principal Planner, Louie will be working to simplify and streamline the County permitting processes so farmers and ranchers who want to expand into the development of agricultural-tourism, product processing and direct marketing can do so with sensible guidelines in place.

“The permitting processes I will be working on will be tailored to the distinct agricultural regions within the county, of which 10 have been identified. The County understands that one size does not fit all when it comes to agricultural activities,” Louie said.

Louie recently worked on the Solano County General Plan Update and has been working as a public and private planner for 40 years, many of those in Dixon.

To contact the ombudsmen, call Cline at 707-784-1310 or email afcline@solanocounty.com or Louie at 707-784-3173 or jalouie@solanocounty.com.

ROBERT MONDAVI INSTITUTE FOR WINE AND FOOD SCIENCE OPENS @ UC DAVIS

University of California, Davis
October 10, 2008

ROBERT MONDAVI INSTITUTE FOR WINE AND FOOD SCIENCE OPENS

Fittingly surrounded by olive trees and an edible garden, hundreds of dignitaries, visitors and members of the university community gathered today to celebrate the grand opening of the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science at the University of California, Davis.

The new 129,600-square-foot complex of three academic buildings, visible from Interstate 80, houses UC Davis' departments of Viticulture and Enology, and Food Science and Technology, as well as the administrative offices for the institute.

"How truly great it is that we are able to celebrate the Robert Mondavi Institute's grand opening as part of UC Davis' centennial celebration," said UC Davis Chancellor Larry Vanderhoef. "It is especially fitting because, with the grand opening of this institute, we are also celebrating two of UC Davis' historical strengths."

Vanderhoef noted that the University of California played an important role in founding and fueling California's $45 billion a year wine industry and has made significant contributions to the production and processing of California's foods.

The grand opening ceremony was held in the institute's expansive courtyard, landscaped as a demonstration garden that includes olive and citrus trees, vegetables, and herbs. The courtyard faces west toward a 12-acre teaching vineyard, which will be planted with grapevines this winter.

Special guest for the grand opening was Margrit Biever Mondavi, wife of the late Robert Mondavi. In 2001, Mondavi, a legendary California winemaker, gave $25 million to establish the wine and food science institute within UC Davis' College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. The Mondavis also gave an additional $10 million to help launch the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, which opened in 2002 and is now a regional performing arts landmark.

Robert Mondavi died May 16 at his Napa Valley home at the age of 94.

"It was really Margrit and Bob who, going back 20 years, first talked about the continuum of wine, food and the arts and the importance of understanding the connections in that continuum," Vanderhoef said.
"We're sad that Bob Mondavi isn't here with us today to share in this moment, but honored by the presence of Margrit and other members of the Mondavi family whose longstanding friendship is treasured by UC Davis."

Also participating in the grand opening were Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Napa Valley; University of California Interim Provost Robert Grey; Neal Van Alfen, dean of UC Davis' College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences; and Robert Mondavi's children, Tim Mondavi and Marcia Mondavi Borger. Emcee for the event was Clare M. Hasler, executive director of the Robert Mondavi Institute.

During the ceremony, Rep. Thompson, whose 1st Congressional District encompasses both UC Davis and the Napa Valley, presented Margrit Mondavi with a congressional resolution honoring Robert Mondavi.

Ceremonial groundbreaking

After ribbons were cut, signifying the official grand opening of the new complex, the audience turned its attention to the arrival of the Budweiser Clydesdales. The 8-horse hitch, pulling a beer wagon, signaled the beginning of a groundbreaking ceremony for the institute's second building phase, which will include design and construction of two connected, one-story buildings totaling 32,000 square feet.

One of the buildings will house the small-scale Teaching and Research Winery, and the other will be home to the Anheuser-Busch Brewing and Food Science Laboratory, which will include a brewery and pilot food-processing plant. Construction of the buildings, estimated to cost $16.5 million, is slated to begin in June 2009 with completion anticipated in July 2010.

"We are deeply grateful to the more than 150 individuals, alumni, corporate friends and foundations who have contributed to the $16.5 million goal for this phase of construction," said Dean Neal Van Alfen. He noted that the buildings have been designed to meet or exceed environmental specifications necessary for the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED-NC Gold Certification.

Ceremonially turning the soil with a giant-sized fork, corkscrew and bottle opener during the groundbreaking were Doug Muhleman, group vice president of brewing operations and technology at Anheuser-Busch Inc. and a UC Davis alumnus; Charles Bamforth, chair of the Department of Food Science and Technology and the Anheuser-Busch Endowed Professor of Malting and Brewing Sciences; Tim Mondavi and Marcia Mondavi Borger; Andrew Waterhouse, chair of the Department of Viticulture and Enology and the John E. Kinsella Endowed Chair in Food, Nutrition and Health; Adrianna Gozza, a third-generation winemaker and graduate student in the Department of Viticulture and Enology; and Natasha Stephens, an undergraduate student in the Department of Food Science and Technology.

Following the groundbreaking, all of the ceremony attendees were invited to tour the new facilities; participate in beer, wine and olive oil tastings; and attend presentations by UC Davis alumnus, chef and television personality Martin Yan, as well as by UC Davis faculty members Ann Noble and Charles Bamforth.

Building background

Design and construction of the two phases of the Robert Mondavi Institute complex are estimated to cost a total of $93.5 million.
This includes $73 million for the first phase, $16.5 million for design and construction of the second phase, and $4 million for utilities for the second phase.

Funding for both phases includes $36.2 million from the state of California; $20.8 million from UC Davis; and $36.5 million in philanthropic support from private companies, foundations and individuals. Among the top private donors were Robert Mondavi and the Anheuser-Busch Foundation.

The design and construction team for phase one of the institute included the architectural firm of Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership
(ZGF) of Portland. Collaborating on the landscape design for the new complex were design partner Robert Frasca, Laurie Olin of the Olin Partnership and Walker/Macy Associates of Portland. The construction team included Flintco Construction Services of Tulsa, Okla.; Frank Riley; Brian Stevenson; and Craig Smart.

Selected to design, build and landscape the phase-two buildings are BNB NorCal of San Mateo and Flad Architects of San Francisco; along with Gayner Engineers, Therma, Red Top Electric, KPW Structural Engineers, Creegan+D'Angelo Civil Engineers and HLA Landscape Architects.

About UC Davis

For 100 years, UC Davis has engaged in teaching, research and public service that matter to California and transform the world. Located close to the state capital, UC Davis has 31,000 students, an annual research budget that exceeds $500 million, a comprehensive health system and 13 specialized research centers. The university offers interdisciplinary graduate study and more than 100 undergraduate majors in four colleges -- Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Biological Sciences, Engineering, and Letters and Science -- and advanced degrees from five professional schools: Education, Law, Management, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine. The UC Davis School of Medicine and UC Davis Medical Center are located on the Sacramento campus near downtown.

Media contact(s):
* Clare M. Hasler, Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science, (530) 754-6349, cmhasler@ucdavis.edu
* Pat Bailey, UC Davis News Service, (530) 752-9843, pjbailey@ucdavis.edu


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Sutter garners top award for second year

Sutter garners top award for second year
October 06, 2008 22:53

FAIRFIELD - Sutter Regional Medical Foundation has received the Top Overall Performance Award from the Integrated Healthcare Association, according to a Sutter press release.

The award, which Sutter received for the second consecutive year, was presented at the IHA's annual Pay for Performance (P4P) Stakeholders meeting.

The award was based on 2007 P4P results such as clinical quality, patient satisfaction and use of health information technology.

'This recognition truly demonstrates that we're focused on providing the highest quality care and the best patient service possible,' stated Dr. Samuel Santoro, president of Sutter's Solano Regional Medical Group, in the press release.

Rio Vista hooks visitors with bass derby, festival

Rio Vista hooks visitors with bass derby, festival
By Barry Eberling | Daily Republic | October 09, 2008



Roy Taylor, an emplyee for California Carnival, hoses down a ride in the carnival portion on the Rio Vista Bass Festival. The festival, which runs Friday through Sunday, includes a fishing derby, games, rides, a soap box derby, vendors and a parade. Photo by Chris Jordan

RIO VISTA - Striped bass will be star of the show in Rio Vista this weekend.

The city is hosting its Striped Bass Derby and Festival. Anglers will start competing today to catch the fish that will net the $2,000 prize.

But non-anglers will also find plenty to do. The festival features such events as a carnival, parade, boat parade, entertainment, fireworks and a classic car show.

It's a big bash for this eastern Solano County city of about 7,500 residents along the Sacramento River. The festival returns this year after being canceled in 2007.

'It's a local tradition here and the town really missed it,' said Mary Ellen Lamothe, president of the Rio Vista Chamber of Commerce. 'They're really looking forward to it. The carnival coming to town is a big deal in a little town like this.'

The festival can also introduce visitors to a city unlike any other in Solano County, one that gets much of its identity from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Lamothe said she has talked to Solano County residents who were not aware that Rio Vista is in the county.

The event also can be a boost for businesses. Lamothe owns Foster's Bighorn, an old-time Rio Vista bar and restaurant with about 200 taxidermied animals on display.

Hope and Brent Cohn are co-chairing the volunteer effort for the festival. Seventy-five to 100 volunteers will be working the three days, Hope Cohn said.

The Cohns moved to Rio Vista two years ago and volunteered to help with the festival in October 2007, right after the festival should have held but was scratched.

Hope Cohn sees some changes with the festival's return. There will be no big commercial food wagons, she said, and most food booths will be run by local nonprofits.

See the complete story at the Daily Republic online.

Planners OK improvements for CreekWalk

Planners OK improvements for CreekWalk
By Melissa Murphy/ MMurphy@TheReporter.com
Article Launched: 10/10/2008

Vacaville's CreekWalk is getting an extension, a unanimous decision made Tuesday evening by the Planning Commission.

The extension from the existing CreekWalk along Ulatis Creek will continue east along School Street to McClellan Street.

As part of Phase II, a 6- to 10-foot wide paved pedestrian walkway will be added, as well as two additional creek overlook platforms, new landscape, relocation of street lights, entry signs and security video equipment.

Other aesthetics that will be added, such as lights and benches, are intended to match the elements already existing along the CreekWalk, according to Fred Buderi, Vacaville's planning project manager.

Planning Commissioner Ella Marie Kallios said she was pleased with the project.

"I think the project looks great," she said. "I spend a lot of time downtown and I think a lot of the citizens get a lot of enjoyment out of it (the CreekWalk)."

Buderi confirmed that studies were done that show that the project causes less than a significant impact on the environment.

He also said that any improvements would not impede or obstruct the flow of the water in the creek.

Vacaville has received $822,000 in grant funding for design and construction of this project, according to a staff report.

The grant from the Transportation for Livable Cities program consists of federal funds that make up a component of the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality funds.

A match of $132,000 is required for the grant and that money will come from Vacaville's Redevelopment fund.

The City Council will have a chance to approve the allocation of funds and give a thumbs up to continue construction during a future meeting.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Livermore Lab reports $9.4 million in royalties for year

San Francisco Business Times - October 8, 2008

Wednesday, October 8, 2008 - 4:24 PM PDT
Livermore Lab reports $9.4 million in royalties for year
San Francisco Business Times - by Steven E.F. Brown

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory brought in $9.4 million in royalties in the just-ended fiscal year.

This is, by more than 50 percent, the best year for royalties ever at the lab, which was started in 1952 as a Cold War atomic research facility.

Technology developed at the Department of Energy laboratory that bring in the most royalties are:


A cancer and disease test licensed to Abbott Laboratories (NYSE: ABT).
A laser used to strengthen fan blades in jet engine, licensed to Metal Improvement Co. of Paramus, N.J.
A rapid polymerase chain reaction microchip device that heats and cools DNA, licensed to Cepheid (NASDAQ: CPHD) in Sunnyvale.
Radar technology used for fluid-level sensing and other uses, licensed to 12 businesses.

The lab’s industrial partnerships office, led by Erik Stenehjem, inked 19 licenses during the fiscal year.

In fiscal 2007 the lab brought in $6.3 million in royalties; in fiscal 2006 $6.1 million; and $5.6 million in 2005.

The lab is run by a management group made up of the University of California; San Francisco companies Bechtel and URS Corp. (NYSE: URS); Lynchburg, Va.-based BWX Technologies; and Columbus, Ohio-based Battelle.

The lab was set up in 1952 to improve atomic weapons technology. Its first noted breakthrough was the design of an atomic warhead that fit on a missile launched from a submarine. Later, the lab did work on so-called MIRV warheads, which packed several independently steered warheads onto the tip of a single missile.

In time, the lab added many non-weapon programs, like biomedicine, laser and fusion energy research.

As supercomputers improved, the lab used them more and more to simulate nuclear explosions, which had been banned by treaties.




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