School board moves ahead with $114 million bond
Stockton voters will have to decide in November whether to pass a $114 million school bond to pay for building new schools and expanding existing ones in north Stockton within the next 10 years.
At a special meeting Tuesday, the Lodi Unified School District board of trustees discussed the district's needs for the next five years, estimated at $214.9 million. Those plans include construction of two new elementary schools, a K-8 school, a middle school, and an academy high school; and the expansion of Middle College High School at Delta College.
State grants of $61.3 million, developer fees of $38.7 million, and interest of $900,000 is expected to make up the balance.
After the initial five years, the district must assess how well the plan serves the increasing student population, said Superintendent Bill Huyett.
Fifty-five percent of voters are needed to approve the bond in November, which does not include plans for upgrades and construction of Lodi schools.
"The reality in California right now is you have to have matching funds from local constituents, developer fees and state grants," Huyett said. "If the bond fails we'll have to try again to find funding."
An updated facilities master plan says that new schools and upgrades in north Stockton and Lodi from 2006 to 2016 will cost about $685 million.
The board is scheduled to decide on its approval of the bond amount at their next meeting, Tuesday, June 20 at 7 p.m. at the James Areida Educational Support Center, 1305 E. Vine St., Lodi.
Man charged with rape
A Lodi man faces a July 13 court date after being charged with rape of a woman with a mental disability, according to San Joaquin County Superior Court records.
Joel Montgomery, 56, allegedly had sex with a 27-year-old woman who is mentally incapable of giving consent, said sheriff's spokesman Les Garcia. The woman has a mental capacity of a 14-year-old, her mother told sheriff's investigators. The alleged incident on June 3 in a residence on Highway 12 in Lockeford, Garcia said.
Montgomery, who has been released on $125,000 bail, is also charged with oral copulation with someone under 14, court records show.
Montgomery pleaded not guilty to the charges and faces a July 13 court date, when a pre-preliminary hearing is scheduled in Lodi court.
Complaint filed against reclamation district
An organization called Public Interest Watch has filed a series of complaints against Thornton's reclamation district to the Internal Revenue Service, Franchise Tax Board and the California Employment Development Department.
The organization alleges that Reclamation District 348, which performs levee maintenance and flood control work in the Thornton area, maintains an employer-employee relationship with individuals that violates state regulations.
Public Interest Watch also accuses reclamation district officials of poor recordkeeping.
The group was established in 2002 to investigate alleged misuse of charitable funds by nonprofit organizations and governmental organizations, according to its Web site.
Union pushes for more county employees
STOCKTON - Several political candidates met with members of the San Joaquin County employee labor union and the public Wednesday evening in Stockton for a town hall meeting to discuss hiring more county employees to match its growth.
Sheriff's candidates Dennis Lobenberg and Steve Moore, supervisor candidate Richard Dean and Supervisor Steve Gutierrez were expected to attend the discussion, according to a news release from Service Employees International Union 790.
The union has been pushing the county to hire more employees, including more sheriff's deputies and human services specialists like counselors.
According to the news release, the case loads of Human Services Agency employees have doubled since 2001, while 100 jobs have been cut in that time.
First published: Thursday, June 15, 2006