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Santa Clarita Gazette and Free Classifieds is a locally owned weekly publication. Each week you will find news, opinion, sports and more plus over 200 classified ads online and in print! Each week’s issue is printed and distributed on Thursdays and Fridays, the full edition is also here on the web site on Thursdays as a page flip. All of the articles and classified ads are online and display ads are printed and appear on various pages of the web site to correspond with the print ad.

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Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | January 16, 2015

There was a range of theft in the SCV in the last week, one involving a three-year-old. A 37-year-old construction worker from Saugus was arrested for kidnapping a toddler from Newhall. An unemployed 22-year-old Newhall man was arrested for burglary. A 31-year-old computer tech from Los Angeles and a 28-year-old construction worker from Castaic were charged with robbery. A 43-year-old Santa Clarita transient was picked up for receiving known stolen property valued at more than $400. Two unemployed Los Angeles men, ages 22 and 24, were picked up for theft of personal property.

A 20-year-old valet from Valencia and two Stevenson Ranch men – a 22-year-old construction foreman and a 20-year-old student – were cited for entering/occupying a property without consent. And a 56-year-old Santa Clarita transient was picked up for unauthorized entry into a non-commercial dwelling.

An 18-year-old unemployed Inglewood woman was charged with taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent, as was an unemployed 18-year-old Fresno man. A 30-year-old TV director from Glendale was cited for reckless driving.

DUIs with prior arrests included:
20-year-old Costa Mesa nanny
24-year-old painter from Castaic
45-year-old horse trainer from Canyon Country
29-year-old electrician from Newbury Park

Two Bakersfield men – a 19-year-old handyman and a 41-year-old waiter – were picked up for transporting/selling, etc. a controlled substance.

A 45-year-old sculptor from Saugus and a 44-year-old roofer from Canyon Country were picked up for possession of a controlled substance for sale. And a 32-year-old bartender from Sherman Oaks was charged with possession of a controlled substance.

A 38-year-old glass polisher from Van Nuys was charged with failure to appear after a written promise.

A couple – a transient 27-year-old and a 27-year-old mechanic from Newhall – were cited for building fires on posted property.

A 39-year-old Santa Clarita man who works as an oil changer was picked up for making criminal threats.

A 37-year-old pastor from Canyon Country was arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant earlier in the week. Last weekend, a 44-year-old Valencia doctor and a 35-year-old computer programmer from Castaic were brought in for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant.

My Comments about Public Comment

| City Council, Opinion | January 15, 2015

by Steve Petzold

Steve head shotI went to the City Council meeting on Tuesday evening planning to make a statement regarding the lack of a meaningful response to the voter’s rejection of Measure S on November 4, 2014. Unfortunately for me, a large number of individuals had already signed speaker cards and I would be required to wait until the end of the meeting to make comment.

For those of you unfamiliar with council procedure, let me provide a quick background. Following an invocation and time for awards and recognition, the council allows public comment from a maximum number of ten individuals for up to three minutes. This time is typically reserved for issues from the public that do not relate to items on the published agenda. If the number of public commentators exceeds 10, they must wait until after the council has finished the normal business, and public comment is allowed to commence again. In general, the members of the city council are not allowed to publicly comment on items not on the agenda.

For items on the agenda, speakers are allowed three minutes for comment before consideration of the issue.

In my opinion this system works fairly well, although the public speaker is at a disadvantage, because they do not have the ability to respond to, or rebut statements made during council consideration of the item.

What I learned during the time that I sat through public comment is what I would like to share with you today.  There are several issues that we should keep our eyes on over the next few months.

Santa Clarita, as most of us know, has several mobile home communities, concentrated in the Canyon Country area. These mobile homes are usually owned by residents, but sit on spaces that are leased from the landowner. There is a rent control ordinance that covers these parks and the City Council is considering an ordinance that allows for an update on allowable rent increase. The number that I hear is a maximum three percent increase.

A large number of the speakers at the beginning of last night’s meeting are residents of the mobile home parks who object to this increase, because they are on fixed incomes and the increases on their Social Security are less than those on the proposed lease increases.

If I learned one thing during the billboard battle over Measure S, it was to have a degree of empathy for the concerns of others, even if I did not find a great deal of value in the issue itself. I recognized one of the speakers as a dear man who I often see at the Senior Center. He and his “wife” sat through the meeting to hear a response to the plea for rent increase relief. It really touched my heart to see the sincere concern on their faces.

The City plans to make a decision in the late winter or early spring. It certainly appears to me that the City Manager, staff, and Council members are attempting to find a good balance, although I expect that the residents will be unhappy with the result.

The other issue for us to watch is the proposed expansion of the Chiquita Landfill in Val Verde. On this issue, the City has no meaningful control and the decision is in the hands of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.
Next to the mobile home residents, the next largest number of public comments came from citizens concerned with this issue.

But, Santa Clarita City Council will not make this decision; City staff does evaluate the public documents and makes recommendations and comments for the City Council to review. There are many serious concerns that the public has about this expansion, but powerful interests are in favor of it and there does not seem to be a reasonable alternative plan for future solid waste disposal requirements.

It was rather nice to sit back and see the important issues that affect our city and the Santa Clarita Valley discussed by citizens like you and me.
It is important for our representative democracy and the future of the SCV that citizens utilize the City Council public comment period. My advice is to take advantage of this process … and get your speaker card in early.

Santa Colorita 5K Run Supports Jack’s Angels

| News | January 15, 2015

The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce is registering runners and volunteers for the second annual “Santa Colorita Run.” Held February 14, 2015, the event is described as a “festival of community, color, fitness, fun and families” at Castaic Lake Recreation Area.

The event is held all over the world fostering a celebration of health, happiness, individuality, and a spirit of giving back to one’s community. This event is for runners and participants of all ages, but there is an important rule: runners must wear white. Some participants wear goggles, because at the end of the race they all get doused with non-toxic powder in many colors.

santa colorita2A portion of the race called “Skip for Jack” will take place just before the first wave of Santa Colorita. It is dedicated to the charity Jack’s Angels Foundation, named for Jack Demeter, who was diagnosed at age three with Diffused Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) and died nine months later. Participants will skip around the booths, raising awareness for the disease. They will each be given a handmade gift and can participate in a balloon release. Those who register with more than 10 people will qualify as a “team” and get to choose a team name.

Registration for any event at the Santa Colorita Run is available online until February 9. After that date, call the Santa Clarita Chamber of Commerce at (661) 702-6977.

The price for “Skip for Jack” is $10. Registration for the 5K race is $65 before February 9. Runners may use discount code: “72514” to save $15. Groups of 10 people registered together as a team receive a $5 discount per person.

Children 12 and under and seniors (65+) are $22.50 and strollers are free. There are no discounts for these pricing groups.

The Castaic Lake Recreation Area is located at 32132 Castaic Lake Drive in Castaic.

Visit www.santacolorita.com

Female Athlete of the Week – Alexa Porchia

| SC Living | January 15, 2015

Female AthleteThis Canyon High School senior is a point guard and a shooting guard on the Girls Basketball team. The top defensive player, Alexa leads the team in steals. She showed her offensive skills recently, scoring 29 points in her team’s 58-38 win over Garfield in the Fairfax Tournament. The Canyon girls improved to 12-4, thanks to players like Alexa.

“I’ve coached her for three years, and I believe she’s our best athlete,” said Paul Broneer, CHS Girls Basketball team assistant coach. “This year, she’s beating two to three people to the basket and often gets fouled. Alexa’s having to take on a bigger role and she’s handled it well. She’s really a competitor.”

Male Athlete of the Week – Joshua Garnica

| SC Living | January 15, 2015

male athlete1

male athlete2A junior at William S. Hart High School, Joshua Garnica is making a strong showing for the Boys Soccer team. He scored a goal in his team’s 2-0 shutout over La Canada last week. The Hart Boys team has a seven-game winning streak and are 12-1-2.

“We have scored 37 goals and have only been scored on three times in 15 games. It’s the best defense I’ve had in my last three years, said Coach Adonay Jovel. “Joshua Garnica is very dangerous around the box and has strong technical abilities. He is a team player who plays where you need him and is always willing to learn.”

Nearly 50 Local Authors at Library Celebration

| News | January 15, 2015

The Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library, with support from the Santa Clarita Public Library, will once again present the Celebration of Local Authors event from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 17, 2015 at the Old Town Newhall branch, located at 24500 Main Street.

This exciting free event will feature 48 local authors, and provide them with the opportunity to share their work with the public. Authors will participate in moderated panel discussions which will be followed by a question and answer time from the public. Attendees will also be able to purchase the authors’ books throughout the event and obtain autographs.

The Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library is an active group of Santa Clarita residents who volunteer, advocate and fundraise to meet the needs of the local library system. All of the proceeds from the fundraising efforts and programs sponsored by the Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library go towards providing new materials and programming. To receive information about Friends events or to join as a general member, email friends@santaclaritalibrary.com.

For more information about the Second Annual Celebration of Local Authors, visit SantaClaritaFol.com or contact Santa Clarita Public Library Marketing, PR and Special Projects Coordinator Robin Hoklotubbe at (661) 799-6135 or email at friends@santaclaritalibrary.com.

Sheriffs: Ride ATVs Only in Designated Areas

| News | January 15, 2015

After a year of numerous deaths and injuries from off-roading, the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station is reminding residents in the community, including the SCV, to be aware of rules and regulations when they ride. Now is often considered the best time of year to ride an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and enjoy the thrill, but remember to only ride in areas designated for these types of vehicles.

Every year the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station receives hundreds of calls for service regarding illegal riders, mainly in the Acton/Agua Dulce area. Many of these riders are individuals who live in these communities. It is a very upsetting situation for residents of Acton/Agua Dulce area, because ATV riding in these two communities is prohibited. The land is either privately owned or owned by utility companies; therefore, riding in these areas is illegal.

The Palmdale Sheriff’s Station has an off-road team which is funded by a grant through the State and County Department of Parks and Recreation. These deputies are assigned to patrol these areas and look for illegal riders. Generally the team dedicates over 48 hours a month to the Acton/Agua Dulce area and contacts between 10-20 people during each shift. If you are on an ATV and stopped, you will be cited for riding in a non-designated area, pursuant to 15.68.020 of the Los Angeles County Code (LACC) – Off Road Vehicle Trespassing.

Sheriffs are asking the public to refrain from riding in non-designated riding areas. If you would like information on areas that have been designated in Southern California visit the website.

If you have any other questions or concerns contact Jodi Wolfe at 661-272-2520 or email jewolfe@lasd.org.

*Courtesy of www.hometownstation.com

Santa Clarita Family Provides the Gift of Open Space to Public Trust

| News | January 15, 2015

There are many residents of Santa Clarita who are open space advocates and enjoy outdoor sports and recreation. There are few, however, who have the means and generosity to expand its accessibility.

Bob and Wendy Stevenson proved that they are dedicated to the preservation of land last month when they donated two 4.91-acre lots to the City of Santa Clarita creating additional open space. This gift of approximately 10 acres of property is adjacent to the City’s existing Golden Valley Ranch open space.

Rather than building on this property, which is located in Sand Canyon, the Stevensons decided that they wanted to give current and future residents the opportunity to experience the pristine mountains viewable from the two donated lots.
This is the second property donation made by the Stevenson family. In 2007, the couple donated 16.3 acres of land to the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy (SMMC).

The property will add to the City’s continued efforts to preserve open space and provide additional recreational opportunities for residents in the future. Currently the City of Santa Clarita, with the help from funding partners and the passing of the Open Space Preservation District, has preserved thousands of acres of open space for the public to enjoy in perpetuity.

For additional information on the Stevenson’s property donation to the City of Santa Clarita, contact Bob Stevenson at 805-490-2300.

Athletes of the Week – Male – Michael Valencia, Female – Nickey Davis

| SC Living | January 10, 2015

As goalkeeper for the Hart Indians Varsity Girls Soccer team, Nickey Davis played a key role in taking the championship at the Hart Soccer Showcase last week. She made two crucial saves in the penalty kick portion of the championship game of the tournament. The Hart girls won, 5-4 on penalty kicks, against Quartz Hill. The two teams played to a 1-1 draw in regulation. Hart won its own soccer tournament for the third time in the past four years, thanks to Nickey’s winning save.

Thanks to Hart High School sophomore Michael Valencia, the Varsity Boys Soccer team brought in its third championship in four years at the Hart Soccer Showcase last week. Michael scored two goals in Hart’s 3-1 win over Valencia in the championship game of the tournament. Hart improved to 10-1-2 and are unbeaten in 10 straight games against Valencia. With team members like Michael Valencia, Hart stands ready to see more of the same.



Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | January 9, 2015

There was a rare charge of kidnapping in the last week. A 29-year-old gardener from Canyon Country was arrested for the crime.

There were several different types of theft in the last week. A 35-year-old contractor from Stevenson Ranch was picked up for taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent. An unemployed 35-year-old Newhall woman was brought in for forgery/counterfeit of a public/corporate seal. A 50-year-old engineering assistant was charged with theft of personal property. And a 47-year-old unemployed Lancaster man was arrested for burglary.

A 22-year-old Palmdale man was charged with defacing/damaging property valued at less than $400, and an unemployed 25-year-old Santa Clarita man was picked up for defacing property.

A 22-year-old Santa Clarita transient was picked up for trespassing on lands under cultivation.

Those who received a charge of driving under the influence included:
53-year-old Bakersfield man
37-year-old landscaper from Garden Grove
21-year-old food server from Canyon Country
23-year-old salesman from Pacoima
58-year-old unemployed Carson man
25-year-old unemployed Palmdale woman
29-year-old construction worker from Newhall
24-year-old service worker from North Hollywood
21-year-old unemployed Agua Dulce man
46-year-old studio driver from Santa Clarita
34-year-old loading tech from Fillmore
28-year-old unemployed Castaic man
39-year-old maintenance worker from Panorama City
21-year-old waitress from Sylmar

A 34-year-old Castaic man who works at a car wash was cited for carrying a switchblade knife. And an 18-year-old Canyon Country man was charged with manufacturing/selling/giving/lending/possessing metal knuckles. A 32-year-old electrician from Saugus was arrested for illegal possession of ammunition.

An unemployed 37-year-old Lemon Grove man was brought in for assault with a deadly weapon, with great bodily injury, and a 28-year-old Saugus woman was charged with assault with a deadly weapon used on a police officer/fireman, without a firearm, causing great bodily injury.

Charges of corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant were brought against:
20-year-old custodian from Newhall
50-year-old unemployed Valencia man
18-year-old construction worker from Valencia
31-year-old loader from Newhall
30-year-old unemployed Van Nuys man

A 27-year-old gardener from Newhall was charged with battery against a former spouse, and a 45-year-old unemployed Santa Clarita man was charged with battery on a non-cohabitating former spouse. A 48-year-old Valencia construction worker was charged with disobeying a domestic relations court order.

Residents Meet Fitness Goals with Community Center Classes

| News | January 9, 2015

Fitness is at the forefront of people’s minds this time of year, and the City of Santa Clarita is one step ahead of the crowd. Two local community centers have a number of classes slated for this year, open to residents with plans for some healthy workouts .

Community Members of all ages can mix up their fitness routines at affordable prices with the following programs available at the City’s Community Centers:

Canyon Country Community Center (18792 Flying Tiger Drive)
For more information, or to register for the following programs, visit Santa-Clarita.com/CCCC or call 661-284-1480.
CCCC Striders (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays beginning January 5, 2015 – Staff will lead a moderate to fast-paced walk on differing routes.
Dance It Out! (Adults) – From 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Wednesdays beginning on January 14, 2015 – This beginner-friendly, follow-the-leader cardio dance class blends a variety of dance styles from Broadway to Bollywood to hip hop and funk.
POUND Rockout Workout (Adults) – From 5:45 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. on Mondays and/or Thursdays beginning on January 12, 2015 – Participants can experience a full body cardio jam session, combining light resistance with constant simulated drumming.
SMART ProTrainer Circuit (Adults) – From 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Tuesdays beginning on January 6, 2015 – This class combines strength training, explosive plyometric, and speed training, while using the SMART ProTrainer interactive wall. Each exercise option will have modifications for various fitness levels.

Newhall Community Center Fitness (22421 Market Street)
For more information, or to register for the following programs, visit Santa-Clarita.com/NCC or call 661-286-4006
Boxing Fitness (Adults) – From 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning January 13, 2015 – This class teaches fundamental boxing techniques to improve overall fitness while burning calories.
Boxing Introduction – For adults from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and for youth from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning January 13, 2015 – Learn the basics of boxing mechanics, including skill and technique development, circuit training and drills. Participants must provide their own equipment.
Dance Workout – For adults from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and for youth from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Thursdays beginning January 15, 2015 – This class is all about having fun while dancing and burning calories to some great tunes!
Pilates (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays beginning on January 13, 2015 – Learn Pilates, which emphasizes the balanced development of the body through core strength, flexibility and awareness.
Yoga with Jackie (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Thursdays beginning on January 15, 2015 – Jackie teaches basic yoga poses and flows to stretch and strengthen the major muscles of the body, while increasing flexibility.
Zumba Gold Winter 2015 (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Thursdays beginning January 15, 2015 – Older adults can enjoy a modified Zumba ® class with the original moves at a lower-intensity.  Zumba Sculpt & Stretch (Adults) – From 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays, beginning on January 12, 2015 – This class incorporates cardio, strength and flexibility taught by a bilingual Spanish-speaking instructor.

*A $5 surcharge may be applied to classes for non-residents of the City of Santa Clarita.

Tilted Kilt Turns Family-Friendly with New Name

| News | January 9, 2015

tilted kiltTilted Kilt Pub & Eatery employees and officials from the corporate office have confirmed the Valencia restaurant is closed, officials said Monday. The restaurant will be re-branded and open as Varsity Draft House.

A Westfield Valencia Town Center official said the location was leased through CBRE.

One employee posted to Facebook, “Yesterday was my last day as a kilt girl… That’s right TILTED KILT IS CLOSING after tonight! I’ve gained so much experience from that place and I’m thankful but I’m also happy I’ll never wear that outfit or those hideous shoes again!! It will be renovated into a new BETTER restaurant bar where I’ll still be bartending so make sure you come check it out in about a week or so.”

Varsity Draft House management took little time to announce its plan to open.

Varsity-Draft-House-To-Replace-Tilted-Kilt-In-Santa-Clarita-620x330“I noticed so many rumors going around and knew we had to make a statement. (Monday) was a very hectic day,” said Varsity Draft House General Manager Richard Moore. “I heard a lot of things, like our rent increased, we were out of business. We had not gone under like a lot of people have been saying — we’re rebranding the pub to separate ourselves from Tilted Kilt.”

The new pub will be more “family-friendly” and the servers will no longer be wearing the “breastaurant-style” garb, Moore said. The new uniforms will be more “casual” with employees wearing jeans, a T-shirt and sneakers.

Management of the bar held a meeting Monday with all of the employees, in which management announced the change and offered employees the option to stay with the new restaurant or have a letter of recommendation to stay at Tilted Kilt.

“We were alerted (Monday) of the unexpected closing at the Valencia pub,” said Kelly McNamara, spokeswoman of Fisherman PR for Tilted Kilt’s corporate office. “We have been well received in the Valencia market since opening in February 2012.”

Management is planning to reopen the pub Jan. 9 at 5 p.m.
“Everyone is very, very excited,” Moore said. “The owners love Valencia. We felt we can better serve the employees and community by rebranding our pub. We’re extremely excited and we hope that the new concept is well received by the Santa Clarita Valley.”

Management plans to have a menu with “lots of burgers and a very big representation of some seafood,” he said, adding that “the selection is going to be very vast.”

“We tried to build a menu that we thought gives something for every taste for whoever to walks through the door,” Moore said. “We’re sports oriented. We have over 50 televisions, 10 satellites. We wanted to make this a place for families.”

“We’re looking at long-term strategy,” he added. “We’re going to be here for the long haul.”

Business of the Week – Securitas

| SC Living | January 9, 2015


Offering customized security services to a broad range of business clients, Securitas is able to tailor its service to each company. The Los Angeles management team serves clients in approximately 300 locations, placing security officers in small, medium and large businesses, assisting executives in providing safety with operational efficiency.

Securitas provides security in high rise commercial real estate properties, residential communities, retail stores, and offers both permanent and temporary services. The trusted company contracts with many Santa Clarita locations, hiring only experienced, trained personnel. To contact Securitas, call 213-580-8825 or visit www.Securitas.com.

The Canyon Country Advisory Committee and the year 2015

| Community | January 8, 2015

by Alan Ferdman

With 2015 already upon us, the Canyon Country Advisory Committee will be celebrating its 18th anniversary providing Santa Clarita Valley communities with information and services unlike any other organization in our area. Meetings are held on the third Wednesday of each month, except December, from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Mint Canyon Moose Banquet Room, 1800 Sierra Highway in Canyon Country. There is no charge for attendance. Presentations provided are video recorded and then loaded on YouTube for those unable to attend.

Last year provided many opportunities for the Canyon Country Advisory Committee to expand services at a level greater than ever before. The first opportunity spotlighted the group’s unique “Meet and Greet” format. This process allows for election candidates to provide short presentations about their qualifications and then follows up with a question and answer session. Questions are directly asked by audience members and answers provided by the candidates themselves.  All 13 of the 2014 Santa Clarita City Council candidates participated in meetings held January through March. Congressional Assembly candidates Steve Knight and Tony Strickland were highlighted at the September meeting, and finally Los Angeles County Sheriff candidates Jim McDonnell and Paul Tanaka took center stage during the October meeting. In addition, information was provided throughout the year on major issues such as CEMEX, Billboards, Measure S, and Chloride, plus much more.
With the majority of future local elections over a year away, 2015 provides the Canyon Country Advisory Committee time to refocus on areas the City of Santa Clarita is doing very well and issues where improvement is essential if we are to maintain our Santa Clarita family-friendly lifestyle.

Santa Clarita Valley communities continue to grow.  We no longer live in a little town and our “One Valley One Vision” General Plan provides for the future population to almost double. Traffic congestion, water availability and other infrastructure issues are already being felt around the city. Today, as the third largest city in Los Angeles County, working to establish a culture which establishes continuous improvement for all aspects of city processes and services must be a top priority. It is our responsibility to stay informed, keep our eye on the ball and hold our elected officials accountable for the decisions they make. Only then can we be assured Santa Clarita will remain a community where our children and grandchildren will want to live.

To help you stay informed, I invite you to join us at the first Canyon Country Advisory Committee meeting of 2015 on Wednesday, January 21, remembering always “Together We Can Make A Difference.”

Congressman Steve Knight Sworn in to U.S. House of Representatives

| News | January 8, 2015

This marks Knight’s inaugural term as a U.S. Congressman, after formerly serving in the California State Assembly and State Senate. Rep. Knight is the first person in history from the Antelope Valley to be elected to Congress, and will serve on the prestigious House Committee on Armed Services and House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, according to a news release from Knight.
“I am thrilled to start in my new role as a member of the House of Representatives and to begin serving the people of the 25th Congressional District,” said Knight.
As far as his priorities are concerned, Knight says they will begin working on “CEMEX issues” right away.
“I am excited to work with Representative Knight this legislative session,” said fellow California Representative and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy. “His knowledge and passion for Defense and Aerospace will make him a valuable asset to the committees he has been assigned to.”
Congressman Knight communicated his anticipation in joining the ranks of the newly elected.
The Senate’s website details the actions for a new Congress. After new Senators show their credentials, both newly elected and reelected senators are sworn in by the vice president. One-third of the Senate is elected or reelected every two years.
The Senate is divided into three classes for election purposes, and every two years one-third of the Senate is elected or reelected. It is followed by election of the president pro tempore and other officers.
As January continues, the Senate turns to legislative business. With each new Congress, all pending legislation of the previous Congress expires (with the exception of treaties), so many bills and resolutions are reintroduced.
During the first weeks of the new Congress, most freshman senators mark an important milestone in their Senate careers by delivering their maiden speeches.

Castaic Home Invasion

| News | January 8, 2015

By Perry Smith
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station detectives are investigating a Castaic home invasion robbery on the 28400 block of Sloan Canyon Road, officials said Monday.

A man reportedly muscled his way into the Castaic home around 10:30 p.m. Sunday, January 7, according to Sheriff’s Department arrest records.

Salvador Medrano, 21, of Elkhart, Indiana, was arrested on a robbery charge, according to Josh Dubin of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station.

Medrano reportedly knocked on the door late Sunday night, and when the homeowner answered, he was assaulted, according to the report.

The homeowner, Jeff Preach, said his doorbell rang around 10:30 p.m., and when he answered his door the suspect, Medrano, asked for $100 million, he said.

“I just laughed and said, ‘Buddy, you got the wrong house,’” Preach said Monday afternoon.
Then things got hectic, he said.

Medrano allegedly became belligerent and threw at least four punches at Preach’s face, after pushing his way into the home. He landed several blows, but failed to hurt Preach too badly, he said.

Preach, who described himself as a “big guy,” wrestled with the suspect and eventually managed to pin the man after summoning his “high school linebacker” strength, he said.

“I jammed him and I pinned him until we were forehead to forehead in between the sofa and the drywall,” Preach said.

After pinning Medrano, Preach, who had back surgery several weeks ago, yelled for his wife to call the Sheriff’s Station and get Preach’s shotgun. He was concerned the suspect might be able to grab a weapon with his free hand, he said.

After a struggle, the homeowner was able to detain the suspect at gunpoint with a shotgun, with help from his wife and his cousin, who was recovering from an even more recent back surgery, Preach said.

Medrano allegedly remained combative after deputies arrived on scene, he said. Deputies arrested Medrano for robbery and resisting arrest.

Medrano is being held in lieu of $100,000 bail. He’s due in court Tuesday, according to Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station officials.

Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | January 1, 2015

The holidays are often a time with a great deal of theft, and this year was no different. A 52-year-old therapist from Santa Clarita and a 26-year-old unemployed Saugus woman were picked up for theft of personal property, as was a 33-year-old unemployed Lancaster man and an 18-year-old Canyon Country man who works as a host.

A 22-year-old cashier from Rosemead was arrested for grand theft of money/property greater than $400. Also, a 46-year-old caretaker from Lancaster was arrested for grand theft auto/horse, etc. A 24-year-old unemployed Saugus man was picked up for possession of burglary tools.

A 31-year-old unemployed Canyon Country woman was charged with taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent.

DUIs with prior arrests:
51-year-old construction worker from Pearblossom
22-year-old server from Newhall
39-year-old electrician from Castaic
36-year-old stuntman from Canyon Country
36-year-old cook from Newhall
35-year-old framer from Canyon Country
28-year-old disability examiner from Winnetka
36-year-old unemployed Los Angeles man
42-year-old builder from Canyon Country
44-year-old grip from Littlerock, Calif.
50-year-old teacher from Saugus
29-year-old disabled Newhall woman

A 45-year-old account manager from Valencia and a 37-year-old Canyon Country man who refused to provide an occupation were arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant, etc. A 58-year-old computer engineer from Saugus was arrested for battery against a former spouse.

Also, a 43-year-old preschool teacher from Saugus, a 36-year-old cement finisher from Canyon Country and a 36-year-old Canyon Country man were arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant.

A 50-year-old Newhall woman was brought in for battery against a former spouse.

A 28-year-old Canyon Country man who works at Taco Bell was picked up for carrying a concealed dirk or dagger on his person.

A 19-year-old Santa Clarita man who works in customer service was arrested for sexual battery/touching an intimate part of another.

Drink of the Week

| SC Living | December 28, 2014

photoRosemary lemon drop martini.
Fresh lemon juice, citrus vodka and rosemary infused simple syrup.



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Volunteer of the Week – Jim Gray

| SC Living | December 26, 2014

Every organization has THAT volunteer – the person you can always count on, day or night. Over the past several years, Jim Gray has been that volunteer to New Leash On Life. As a nonprofit, the organization relies on volunteers and donations to help keep the organization afloat. With a 13-acre property to look after, which includes a three-story house, there are bound to be projects here and there that will pop up at a moment’s notice, just as with any home and property. The best thing about Jim is that he can fix just about anything that is thrown his way! Leaky faucets, busted air conditioning, vehicle maintenance, or even construction projects, are just a few of the tasks that Jim has taken on.

NLOLHeroThere’s no task too big for Jim and he’s happy to volunteer his time and resources. But, even better, Jim is also a baking enthusiast! Our staff and volunteers are constantly provided with home-baked goodies, including cakes, cookies, brownies, and lots of other treats, sometimes at staff requests. Jim is a one-in-a-million guy who truly cares about New Leash On Life and its mission to save homeless pets. Every non-profit organization should be lucky enough to have its very own Jim. The NLOL staff is so grateful to have him helping them be the best rescue facility possible. For New Leash On Life, Jim is the hero who has saved the day countless times and they are forever grateful!

Agua Dulce Winery – Wine of the Month

| SC Living | December 24, 2014

Wine of the Month
Agua Dulce Winery 2009 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

Holiday Time with family and friends deserves the Best of the Best. Enjoy!

Agua Dulce Winery
9640 sierra Hightway
10am to 5:30 pm daily

Police Blotter

| Police Blotter | December 23, 2014

In the last week, an unemployed 41-year-old Newhall man was charged with contempt of court/disobeying a court order.

An unemployed 19-year-old Lancaster woman and an 18-year-old Lancaster woman who works in tax filing were charged with conspiracy to commit any crime.

A 20-year-old server from Valencia and a 27-year-old retail manager from Sylmar were charged with theft of personal property. And an unemployed 42-year-old Valencia woman was picked up for petty theft.

An unemployed 20-year-old Van Nuys man was picked up for defacing/damaging property valued at less than $400.

A 31-year-old bartender from San Fernando was picked up for using an expired/forged/revoked access card valuing more than $400.

A 23-year-old Canyon Country cashier, a 35-year-old IT worker from Canyon Country and a 25-year-old chef from Covina were arrested for burglary.

A 22-year-old personal stylist from Canyon Country and an unemployed 20-year-old Saugus woman were charged with taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent.

Charges of Driving under the influence (DUI) included:
29-year-old notary public from Pasadena
43-year-old server from Ventura
22-year-old cook from Van Nuys
37-year-old driver from Northridge
28-year-old make-up artist from Valencia
A 56-year-old veterinary technician from Canyon Country was charged with a DUI combined drug and alcohol influence.

Possession of a controlled substance charges went to:
60-year-old mechanic from Saugus
57-year-old unemployed Valencia woman
37-year-old unemployed Canyon Country man
30-year-old waitress from Newhall

A 20-year-old chef from Canyon Country was picked up for possession of marijuana for sale. Also, a 35-year-old Agua Dulce painter and a 27-year-old telemarketer from Canyon Country were charged with possession of a controlled substance for sale.

A 22-year-old Valencia cashier was charged with transporting/selling a controlled substance, as was a Long Beach couple – she is an unemployed 26-year-old and he is a 22-year-old painter.

A 20-year-old unemployed Los Angeles man was charged with transporting/selling/furnishing marijuana.

An unemployed 43-year-old Santa Clarita man was charged with possession of narcotics/drugs/alcohol/drug paraphernalia in jail.

A 34-year-old coach from Agua Dulce was arrested for making criminal threats.

A 37-year-old Valencia man who works in an automotive department was picked up for assault with a deadly weapon with great bodily injury, and an unemployed 22-year-old Canyon Country man was picked up for assault with a deadly weapon, not a firearm with great bodily injury.

A 54-year-old manager from Saugus and an unemployed 57-year-old Valencia man were arrested for corporal injury on a spouse/cohabitant.

Sheriffs Called Twice to Same House

| News | December 23, 2014

In one week’s time, the Santa Clarita Sheriff’s Department received two emergency calls to the same Canyon Country home for different incidents. Last week a resident held a gun to his head, threatening to kill himself. The armed standoff ended and more than one resident was detained for narcotics violations.

This week Sheriff’s Deputies were once again called by a neighbor, this time reporting that a man was standing on the roof of the same house, located on the 29400 block of Abelia Road. Other residents in the neighborhood report numerous visits by law enforcement to the home in the past.

“We got a call at 8:12 a.m. that an 18-year-old man wearing camouflage was sitting on the roof with a gun/pellet gun. Deputies believe it was a pellet gun,” said Deputy Josh Dubin of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station to KHTS AM 1220 news staff. “When we arrived, we determined a crime had not been committed.”

Arctic Chill Polar Bear Swim

| News | December 20, 2014

Every year, a certain number of local residents choose to start the year in the coldest fashion possible. The City of Santa Clarita invites community members to welcome the New Year at the Arctic Chill Polar Bear Swim at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 1, 2015. The free event will be held at the Santa Clarita Aquatic Center Waterslide Pool located at 20850 Centre Pointe Parkway.

The Arctic Chill Polar Bear Swim allows residents to ride down the chilly Aquatic Center waterslide and splash through the unheated pool. Coffee and hot chocolate will be provided to warm up swimmers after they take the plunge. All participants will receive commemorative gift and photo opportunities with the life-size Polar Bear Swim mascot.  Spectators are welcome.

“The Arctic Chill Polar Bear Swim is an exciting and popular tradition in Santa Clarita and a great way to start the New Year off with a splash!” said Mayor Marsha McLean.

Aquatic Center doors will open at 8:45 a.m. The Aquatic Center Waterslide Pool will not be open for recreational swimming on January 1 and will close immediately following the Polar Bear Swim.

For more information on the Arctic Chill Polar Bear Swim, call Santa Clarita Aquatics Program Specialist Taryn Flatt at (661) 250-3763 or visit santa-clarita.com.

Non-profit of the week – Senior Center SCV

| SC Living | December 19, 2014

A longstanding non-profit group in the SCV, the Santa Clarita Senior Center offers older residents the chance to congregate for support and entertainment all year long. Located in Newhall, the Center attracts crowds to many of its regular programs, such as health and wellness seminars, yoga classes, square dances and line dancing, bridge and chess clubs, and much more.

Its operations are run by the Santa Clarita Committee on Aging (COA). The tagline is “Independence/Dignity/Quality of Life,” which stands behind the foundation’s mission to keep seniors in their own homes for as long as possible. One of the main support programs of the non-profit organization involves a fleet of trucks taking home delivered meals to homebound seniors. It also provides assistance with day care and handyman work needed at the homes of individuals.

Annual fundraisers are attended by hundreds of local residents and have become newsworthy events. The Celebrity Waiter Dinner is a favorite, sporting a different theme each year, always involving costumes. In the past, guests participated in such unusual event themes as “Beyond the Sea” and “Journey Through Television.”

The SCV Senior Center is located at 22900 Market Street in Newhall. The foundation is always in need of more resources. To contact the non-profit group regarding donations or activities, visit www.scv-seniorcenter.org.

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