Council begins search for new city manager
A divided City Council agreed in closed session Tuesday to accept the resignation of City Manager Steve Duran, effective Jan. 6, and set about trying to find his replacement.
On Monday, Antioch announced it had hired Duran as city manager to replace the retiring Jim Jakel.
In a letter of resignation to the Hercules council, Duran asked that Jan. 6 be his final working day in Hercules.
The council accepted the resignation on a 3-2 vote, with Myrna de Vera and Sherry McCoy voting no.
The council instructed City Attorney Patrick Tang to begin the recruitment process for a new manager. The matter of finding an interim manager was continued to the closed session of the Dec. 10 council meeting, Tang said.
-- Tom Lochner, Staff
Suspicious device leads to evacuation
The discovery of a suspicious device that looked like a pipe bomb led to the evacuation of a downtown apartment complex Wednesday afternoon, police said.
While conducting an inspection of an 8-unit apartment complex in the 200 block of West Third Street around 10:45 a.m., code enforcement officers found the object inside a utility closet, according to Antioch police Lt. Tammany Brooks.
All residents were evacuated, and the Walnut Creek Bomb Squad was contacted, Brooks said. Police described the object as a homemade explosive device.
The bomb squad rendered the device safe.
The device is being investigated by Contra Costa Fire's arson unit, Brooks said.
-- Paul Burgarino, Staff
Suspect sought in BofA branch robbery
Police are trying to locate a man who robbed a Bank of America branch Tuesday morning.
About 11:45 a.m., police said a man entered the bank at 4250 Dublin Blvd. and handed a teller a note demanding all the money in the till. The man left with an undisclosed amount of cash and was last seen heading east away from the branch, police said.
No one was injured. The man did not show a gun, police said.
The suspect is described as a black man, between 6 feet, 2 inches and 6 feet, 4 inches tall, with a thin build. He is in his late 40s to early 50s with a grayish scruffy beard and dark hair. He was wearing a black jacket, black gloves, blue jeans, glasses, and a purple cap with the Toronto Raptors basketball team logo on it.
-- Kristin J. Bender, Staff
Trio charged with drug possession and sales
An 18-year-old Livermore man and two teens have been charged with drug possession, along with intent to sell and transport narcotics, police said Wednesday.
The Alameda County District Attorney's Office filed the charges Tuesday against 18-year-old Jonathan Urdahl and two other boys, ages 16 and 17, according to Livermore police spokesman Officer Steve Goard. The three, who police said shared a residence at 2347 Seventh St., were arrested Nov. 27 after the 16-year-old allegedly sold heroin to two people inside a parked car, Goard said.
A special operations unit was preparing to serve a search warrant on the day of the arrests, Goard said, when the 16-year-old suspect was seen making the sale.
Urdahl and the other two were charged with possession, transportation and sale of a narcotic, as well as possession of marijuana with the intent to sell, authorities said.
Urdahl was taken to Santa Rita Jail, where he has since been released on bail. The other two were taken to Alameda County Juvenile Hall.
-- Rick Hurd, Staff
Boy, 10, injured crossing busy street
A 10-year-old boy was conscious and alert after he was struck by a car Wednesday afternoon while running across a busy city thoroughfare, police said.
Around 2 p.m., a red sedan driven by a 75-year-old Pittsburg resident traveling southbound on A Street near 15th Street struck the child.
The driver remained at the scene, and based on witness accounts, the preliminary investigation determined that the juvenile was at fault, according to Antioch police Lt. Tammany Brooks.
The boy was flown to Children's Hospital Oakland as a precaution, Brooks said.
-- Paul Burgarino, Staff
Many parents unaware of school funding law
A survey of 1,003 California parents shows more than half know nothing about a new funding formula being implemented in schools that provides more money for disadvantaged students.
However, the poll, conducted for EdSource, found that 76 percent of parents supported the goals of the funding plan when given an explanation of it over the phone, and about 72 percent would be willing to spend more time helping to guide school funding decisions.
Funded by the California Endowment, the survey was conducted Nov. 5-12 by polling firm Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates. The results released Thursday come as the state Board of Education is considering guidelines for spending the money and a template for district plans, which are required to include parent input.
Complete survey results are available by visiting http://edsource.org/today/parent-engagement.
-- Theresa Harrington, Staff
Oil, grease recycling event is Saturday
Residents are encouraged to drop off their used holiday cooking oil and grease at a recycling event hosted by the Ironhouse Sanitary District on Saturday.
The drop-off site at 450 Walnut Meadows Drive will be open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Residents are asked to bring their grease in sealed containers. The grease will be recycled into biodiesel fuel.
Discarding fats, oils, and grease (known as FOG) down sink drains is the most common cause of sewage blockages and damaged pipes in homes, the sanitary district said.
For more information, visit the district's pollution prevention website at www.ISDP2.org.
-- Judith Prieve, Staff
'Feed the Hungry' dinner is Saturday
The 21st annual Feed the Hungry Holiday Dinner will take place noon to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Eagles Hall, 2100 Rivers St.
The event, timed to fill the gap between Thanksgiving and Christmas by providing a hot meal of turkey and ham to any and all, was started 21 years ago by Annette Wills, a member of the Eagles Auxiliary from Montalvin Manor who died in March. The tradition is now being carried on by her daughter, Melissa Biggs.
Along with a hearty meal, the event provides attendees with donated basic personal care items and warm clothing. Volunteers are sought to donate turkeys, prepare meals, and donate coats or cash to the effort.
Checks made payable to San Pablo Eagles Auxiliary 3028 can be sent to the lodge.
To volunteer or for more details, call Biggs at 510-223-0689.
-- Chris Treadway, Staff