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Merced County Connection Archive

Posted on: February 28, 2019

Merced County Connection - February 2019 Newsletter

Newsletter - Merced County Connection


Printable Formatted PDF Newsletter (With Photos)

County Aids in Foster Farms Expansion

Poultry-producer announces multi-million dollar expansion of Livingston plant bringing jobs, revenue to Merced County

In February, Foster Farms announced a multi-million dollar capital investment project that will support an expansion and upgrade of the company's poultry processing facility in Livingston.

The multi-million dollar investment will expand the facility's product lines, which currently provide 2,032 jobs in Merced County. Additional jobs will be added as part of the expansion.

Construction for the Foster Farms expansion project has already begun, with completion scheduled for September 2019. The expansion has been made possible by a $6.5 million economic incentive package, developed by state and local government leaders working in concert with Foster Farms executive staff.

The package includes resources from California Competes, the California Energy Commission Food Production Investment Program, the Merced County Expanded Subsidized Employment Program, the Merced County On-the-Job Training Program, as well as incentives from the City of Livingston.

The following organizations played major roles in developing the incentive package.

  • Office of Assemblyman Adam Gray
  • Governor's Office of Economic Development
  • Merced County Board of Supervisors
  • Merced County Department of Community and Economic Development
  • Worknet Merced County
  • Merced County Human Services Agency
  • City of Livingston

Chairman Lloyd Pareira of the Merced County Board of Supervisors described the deal as a big success for the region.

"This is a perfect example of government working with local business to help keep jobs in the Valley and grow our economic base," Pareira said. "Not only do we tell people that we're business friendly — we show it."

Vice-Chairman Rodrigo Espinoza, who represents Livingston as the District 1 Supervisor for Merced County, said Foster Farms is critical for employment opportunities in the community.

"The expansion of a local company that employs more than 2,000 people is of particular importance in a community where every job and source of revenue counts," Espinoza said. "I would like to personally thank the Merced County Community and Economic Development team for spearheading this multi-agency effort and working so hard to create a competitive incentive package."

While several agencies had a hand in it, the incentive package that prompted the expansion was organized by the Merced County Department of Community and Economic Development and its Director, Mark Hendrickson.

"This investment by Foster Farms is a major win for the entire Merced County community," said Mark Hendrickson, Director of Community and Economic Development for Merced County. "I'm quite proud of the facilitative role my organization played and wish to congratulate each of our partners who worked at the speed of business to support their effort."

Foster Farms executives said they expect the expansion to allow for future growth and diversification of its customer mix on the West Coast.

It first opened its Livingston plant in 1959.

Campus Parkway Continues to Progress, Remains on Schedule

Segment II of the Campus Parkway project is more than 60 percent complete and remains on track to be finished in the first quarter of 2020. Current work involves widening Highway 140 and constructing the foundation for a bridge over Highway 140.

The overall Campus Parkway project includes the construction of a four-lane expressway from Highway 99, connecting to Highway 140, and extending to Yosemite Avenue. Segment I from Highway 99 to Childs Avenue is complete. Segment II will extend the expressway to Highway 140, and Segment III will extend it to Yosemite Avenue.

Once finished, Campus Parkway will complete the south-eastern portion of the “Merced Loop System,” which will circle the City of Merced and connect surrounding communities, including the City of Atwater.

There's an App for That...

County mobile app aims to improve service delivery

This month, Merced County launched a new mobile application for iPhone and Android devices.

The mobile app will afford County residents easier access to services when they’re on the go, including:

  • Pothole reporting
  • Hazard reporting
  • Meeting agendas
  • Bill payment
  • Facility rentals
  • County directory
  • Calendar
  • News, notifications and alerts

To get the app on an Android/Google Play, search "Merced County" and download. For iPhones, download the "Civic Plus" app, open it and search "Merced County."

There is no charge to use the County’s mobile app. Carrier data charges may apply when downloading or accessing an app.

Town Halls!

Beginning in March, Merced County will host 10 separate town hall meetings to provide updates on County business and engage in discussions with constituents. Here’s the schedule:

District 1

  • Wednesday, May 15 @ 6 p.m.
    Planada Community Center
    9167 E. Stanford Ave., Planada

District 2

  • Tuesday, May 7 @ 6 p.m.
    County Administration Building
    2222 M St., Merced

District 3

  • Wednesday, March 27 @ 6 p.m.
    Stone Ridge Christian H.S.
    2738 Dan Ward Road, Merced
  • Thursday, March 28 @ 6 p.m.
    McSwain School Gymnasium
    926 Scott Road, Merced
  • Tuesday, April 2 @ 6 p.m.
    Atwater VFW
    1390 Broadway Ave., Atwater

District 4

  • Monday, March 4 @ 6 p.m.
    Hilmar Community Center
    20079 W. Falke St., Hilmar
  • Tuesday, March 26 @ 6 p.m.
    Delhi High School Gymnasium
    16881 Schendel Ave., Delhi
  • Wednesday, April 3 @ 6 p.m.
    Winton Community Hall/VFW
    7091 W. Walnut Ave., Winton
  • Monday, April 29 @ 6 p.m.
    Gustine City Hall
    352 Fifth St., Gustine

District 5

  • Thursday, March 14 @ 6 p.m.
    Romero Elementary School
    13500 Luis Ave., Santa Nella

Board Meeting at Historic Courthouse Ushers in New Era for Merced County

The Board of Supervisors held its final meeting of 2018 at the historical Merced County Courthouse Museum—a fitting venue to both wrap up the year and see off former District 5 Supervisor Jerry O'Banion, who retired after 28 years of service on the Board.

The meeting was moved to the Courthouse Museum due to renovations that were taking place in the usual Board Chambers at the County Administration Building. The work, which is now complete, allowed for both ADA improvements and security upgrades.

More than 100 people turned out for the Board meeting at the Courthouse Museum. This was the first time the Board of Supervisors met at the "old courthouse" in nearly 70 years.

The Board of Supervisors' Offices were previously housed in the old courthouse at the corner of 21st and N streets from 1875 to 1950. In 1950, the court and various County services were moved to the courthouse that now stands at the corner of 21st and M streets. The current County Administration Building at 2222 M St. in Merced was constructed in 1975.

The Dec. 18 meeting at the Courthouse Museum brought an appropriate end to the career of District 5 Supervisor Jerry O'Banion, who served for seven terms on the Board of Supervisors.

The 2019 Board of Supervisors, which includes O'Banion's successor for District 5—Scott Silveira—has big plans for 2019 and beyond. For a recap of 2018 and a preview of what's to come, be sure to watch the "Merced County Board of Supervisors Year-in-Review" video on the County's Facebook page, Twitter page, or YouTube channel.

Year in Review Video:

Upcoming Meetings

Board of SupervisorsPlanning Commission
  • February 26, 2019
  • March 12, 2019
  • March 26, 2019
  • April 9, 2019
  • April 16, 2019
  • May 7, 2019

Regular Board of Supervisors meetings are held on scheduled Tuesdays at 10 a.m., unless otherwise specified. Meetings are held in the Board Chambers located in the County Administration Building at 2222 M Street, Third Floor, Merced, CA 95340.
  • February 27, 2019
  • March 13, 2019
  • March 27, 2019
  • April 10, 2019
  • April 24, 2019
  • May 8, 2019

Regular Planning Commission meetings are held on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month (with the exception of December) at 9:00 a.m. in the Board Chambers located in the County Administration Building at 2222 M Street, Third Floor, Merced, CA 95340.

Municipal Advisory Councils
  • Delhi MAC meetings:
    7 p.m. second Thursday of the month,
    16091 Locust St., Delhi
  • Franklin-Beachwood MAC meetings:
    6 p.m. fourth Wednesday of the month,
    Franklin Elementary on Franklin Road
  • Hilmar MAC meetings:
    6 p.m. fourth Monday of the month.
    20077 Falke St., Hilmar
  • Le Grand MAC meetings:
    7 p.m. first Monday of the month,
    13038 E. Jefferson St., Le Grand
  • McSwain MAC meetings:
    7 p.m. fourth Thursday of the month,
    926 N. Scott Road, Merced
  • Planada MAC meetings:
    6 p.m. first Wednesday of the month,
    9167 Stanford Ave., Planada
  • Snelling MAC meetings:
    6:30 p.m. second Wednesday of the month,
    Old Snelling Courthouse, SR 59, Snelling
  • Winton MAC meetings:
    7 p.m. third Tuesday of the month,
    7091 W. Walnut Ave., Winton

Printable Formatted PDF Newsletter (With Photos)

Printable Version (With Photos)
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