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PG&E may cost Manteca hundreds of thousands of dollars
Sikhs of Manteca serving free breakfast Saturday for all ages at center

PG&E’s inability to keep up with growth-related projects could end up costing Manteca taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Manteca Public Works Director Mark Houghton said PG&E has been working for months on engineering plans to relocate two power poles that need to be moved to allow the Union Road diverging diamond interchange work to proceed.

If it doesn’t happen in the next month or so, the California Environmental Quality Act clearance for the interchange expires. That would force the city to go through that process again. That in turn would make it impossible to go out to bid as planned before the end of the year. That would delay the project’s start for at least six months or more.

While Houghton declined to speculate how much it could cost Manteca taxpayers, environmental impact reports for projects on the scale of the interchange are in the six figures. Add escalating construction costs tied into a delay and those two power poles could easily mean Manteca takes a $250,000 or so hit.

In PG&E’s partial defense, they have clean-up from wildfires to address. The Union Road work request though has been submitted for a while.

This also isn’t PG&E’s first rodeo when  it comes to what might politely be called foot-dragging based on their lack of well to adequately staff frontline workers such as construction crews to keep up with growth demands. Ten years ago Manteca ran into a similar problem when Union Road south of the 120 Bypass was widened as part of The Promenade Shops at Orchard Valley project.

The city had made the request for PG&E to relocate several power poles months in advance of the project going to bid. To avoid delaying work, the city went ahead and widened the road and placed temporary K-rail barriers by the poles. It took PG&E more than six months after the road was widened to finally relocate the power poles.

In all fairness, PG&E treats the city the same way they do the private sector.

It took Manteca businessman Leo DeGroot the better part of a year to get power to the commercial center he built on North Main Street where Oak Valley Community Bank is located. His experiences was just one of many that South San Joaquin Irrigation District has collected overthe years in making their pitch they would be more responsive to such local concerns because unlike the corporate PG&E board that authorized reorganizing POG&E’s construction crews to save money and fatten the bottom line, SSJID directors would be easily accessible at the grocery store or at local meetings to pressure to address local concerns.


Sikhs of Manteca serving

free breakfast Saturday

for all ages at center

The Sikhs of Manteca are hosting a free breakfast for people of all ages on Saturday, Sept. 22, at 9 a.m. at the Manteca Senior Center, 295 Cherry Lane.

The menu includes Potatoes Paratha (potato-filled tortillas), plain yogurt, sausage, eggs/cheese, Kheer (sweet rice pudding), Gulab Jamun (sweet dumpling), Indian tea, coffee, and orange juice.

There will also be an entertainment surprise.

Get your tickets in advance at the senior center. While the event is free there is limited capacity and no tickets will be available at the door.

If you have questions call 456-8650.



Ground breaking

ceremony for Great

Wolf for VIPS only


Great Wolf Resort is planning its official ground breaking for Oct. 16 but don’t bother marking it on your calendar.

That’s because only 50 VIPs will be invited. Their ribbon cutting when it occurs in mid-2020 will also be a non-public affair.

City Manager Tim Ogden told the City Council Tuesday that Great Wolf has never had ground breaking ceremonies or ribbon cuttings open to the public. Odgen said he was unsuccessful in his efforts to persuade Great Wolf to change their mind. Ogden said the big concern for Great Wolf was that construction will be well underway by then and they didn’t want to create safety issues.

Grading has already started on the 30 acre site west of Costco for the 500-room hotel and indoor waterpark.


To contact Dennis Wyatt, email