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Satisfied swim student donates $1,500
Manteca Parks and Recreation supervisor Brandy Kendricks, far left, makes remarks about lifeguards and swimming instructors, from left, Nick Hafer, Lois Lipanovich, and Karah Thode as Assistant City Manager Karen McLaughlin, and Mayor Willie Weatherford look on during Tuesday’s City Council meeting. - photo by DENNIS WYATT
Just how impressive are the Manteca Parks and Recreation swimming instructors?

Impressive enough that one Manteca gentleman donated $1,500 to the city’s aquatics program due to how happy he was with results of his private swim lessons and the attitude and competency of the swimming instructors.

This was the first year the city has offered private swimming lessons. The gentleman – who wanted his donation to remain anonymous – signed up for 20 lessons. His goal was simple. He didn’t know how to swim and he wanted to feel comfortable and competent enough to go kayaking with his buddies.

He ended up bringing his kayak to the final lesson at the Manteca High pool where he maneuvered it without a hitch.

Originally he wanted to pay the three instructors who helped him over the 20 lessons $500 apiece. City rules, though, preclude that from happening.

Instead, he donated $1,500 in their honor to the city’s aquatics program.

The three lifeguards were Nick Hafer, Karah Thode, and Lois Lipanovich.

The city this summer added several new things to it repertoire of aquatics programs including exercise swim time in the early morning as well as Saturday group lessons in addition to the private lessons.

Not a penny for Ripon is coming
Ripon city leaders took a financial blow on Friday.

They were one of 14 cities and one county in California to be informed by the state Board of Equalization they would not receive a penny in sales tax this month from Sacramento.

Most of the 337 cities, counties, and transportation agencies in California simply got letters that said they would be receiving less than projected and were provided with the new numbers.

It’s not that Ripon didn’t have taxable sales during April, May, and June. It is just previous payments made by the state were too high based on the sharp downturn in the economy.

The state had projected a 14.4 percent drop in sales tax statewide during the second quarter. Instead, the actual numbers reflected an 18.75 percent drop. The payment for the second quarter is scheduled to arrive this month.
Instead, there will be nothing for Ripon.

It can be a staggering hit for some cities. In Petaluma – which was among the 14 cities getting nothing – it means they won’t have the $375,000 check they were expecting this month.

900 jobs coming to general area
Congressman Jerry McNerney was in the valley side of his district Thursday attending   a reception where he shared information about San Joaquin County’s new medical facility and nursing home for veterans will be located in the general Stockton/French Camp area.  The Veteran’s Home for this area will also include a multi-specialty outpatient clinic.  The construction and staffing is estimated to bring 900 jobs to the area.   

Later in the evening, Congressman McNerney chatted about the state of affairs in local schools with teachers and administrative staff from Manteca Unified, including Manteca Teachers Association President Ken Johnson and Vice President Ericka Meadows.