Members of Woodland City Council and city officials discussed a number of community topics including education, youth outreach and job training during his State of the City address .
“We tend to think of ourselves as a small town, but we really are not,” Mayor Tom Stallard said at the Zoom meeting on Wednesday. “We rank 157 out of 478, which puts us in the top third of California cities in terms of population. “
Stallard highlighted how well the city has fared during the pandemic and pointed to the fact that sales tax revenues in 2020 exceeded those in 2019, even though the pandemic has significantly affected businesses.
Each council member in attendance discussed a key topic or area of concern that the city has addressed over the past year and how the programs or initiatives have helped the community.
City Councilor Victoria Fernandez discussed education and the city’s commitment to ensuring that every high school student has the opportunity to attend at least two years of college.
“While the state provides the courses for free, the City of Woodland will cover the incidental costs of students at Woodland Community College totaling approximately $ 1,500 per year for each of the two years,” Fernandez said.
An additional $ 1,000 scholarship will also be available to all students who are committed to serving the community during their first year of college, according to Fernandez.
City Councilor Tania Garcia-Cadena focused on youth policing programs that aim to increase interest in police work and minimize negative gang influences.
“The Woodland Police Department has a long history of engaging our youth in positive programs and activities,” Garcia-Cadena said.
One such program is the Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) program, which is offered to fourth and fifth graders.
“This is an opportunity for our young people to interact with our agents in a positive and familiar environment. “
Garcia-Cadena also highlighted other policing programs such as the Police Activities League, the Community Police Academy for Youth, the Explorers program and the Advanced Peace program which all attempt to increase police involvement with the police. youth and community.
Mayor Pro-Tempore Mayra Vega spoke about vocational training in Woodland and how the city is trying to create more opportunities to teach young people and other members of the community valuable skills for the jobs sought by businesses and organizations in non-profit.
“We are interested in partnering with businesses and non-profit organizations to provide mentoring opportunities to as many young people as possible,” said Vega.
Aquafil – a carpet recycling company in Woodland – is ready to organize professional training programs for maintenance engineers to take care of its equipment inventory, according to Vega.
“They are open to partnering with assets within the community, like Woodland Community College and the County Office of Education, to provide a certificate or personalized training.”
Vega also mentioned that the city has created Summer at City Hall, a mentoring program aimed at more involving the youth of Woodland.
City Councilor Rich Lansburgh explained what the community can expect for the 150th anniversary celebration in October.
“On October 16, Woodland will do everything in its power to celebrate 150 years of excellence,” he said. “It will be a full day to show our pride in entrusting our citizens, service clubs and other organizations to a common celebration of what we have become.
Lansburgh said the event will be held downtown with vendors, shows, children’s activities, artwork and food available to all attendees. The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is sponsored by Nugget Market.
There will also be a fireworks display at Woodland High School on Sunday evening, October 17th.
“To top off the weekend, the city will be celebrating a fireworks display on Sunday, October 17th.”
City Manager Ken Hiatt discussed the importance of The Lab @ AgStart – a Woodland-based nonprofit that helps food and agriculture startups – and what it means for the community.
“The Sac region, including Woodland, has failed to take full advantage of the power of [UC Davis] that spews out more intellectual capital and marketable technology than almost any other university in California, ”said Hiatt.
He explained that the facility provides access to affordable and well-equipped laboratory spaces that many innovative companies need to start their businesses.
“We have seen tremendous interest from companies in this region, across the country and abroad who are now focusing on Woodland as a place of food and agriculture innovation. “
Hiatt said he believes Woodland is the perfect place for businesses and businesses like these to set up shop and hopes the lab will create jobs for the youth of Woodland or even bring back young people who have had to relocate. for similar opportunities.