Sightings & Happenings Around Town

(Shutterstock)

Missing Moms

Can an employer require employees to return after maternity leave?

I run a small business. Twice in the past two years, I’ve had employees quit directly after taking maternity leave. Prior to their departures, it was understood that they would return to work. This has caused understandable upheaval in the office. What questions, if any, can I ask employees taking maternity or paternity leave? Can I require them to come back to work in order to take the leave? Are there any options for me to avoid this happening in the future?

Dec 8, 2014 Coral Henning

Shaken or Stirred?

Cocktails with local flair

Bartenders around the region have provided us with their best bets for holiday cocktails featuring gin, rye and bourbon — spirits that are now being produced locally by craft distillers.

Dec 5, 2014 Shannon Haslinger
(Shutterstock)

Drop by Drop

After 81 years, microdistillers are gaining ground against Prohibition-era laws

In a makeshift distillery tucked  into a Rancho Cordova business park, Greg Baughman mashes and ferments batches of his Wheel House American Dry Gin using a still he designed and built himself, a gleaming vision of stainless steel and copper. But actually sell you a bottle? For that he needs to hire a middleman due to regulatory hurdles dating back to Prohibition.

Dec 5, 2014 Michelle Locke
(Shutterstock)

Election Aftermath

Post election, what does El Dorado County’s future for growth look like?

Election day saw the defeat of measures M, N and O in El Dorado County. These highly charged measures were opposed by a broad coalition of farmers, business owners and civic leaders who believed these initiatives would diminish local control and restrict development decisions to bureaucrats outside El Dorado County. Although the measures were soundly defeated, the question remains, what happens now?

Dec 3, 2014 Michelle Smira Brattmiller
A new comprehensive program at UC Davis Medical Center will soon provide surgical services for unborn children.

Opportunity of a Lifetime

Fetal surgeons at UC Davis are repairing birth defects in babies — before their patients are even born

Too many pregnant mothers know the feeling of horror: The ultrasound reveals something wrong. Perhaps it’s nothing. But maybe it’s life-threatening, a disease or a disability. Maybe it’s the unthinkable. For hundreds of thousands of years, the unthinkable — babies doomed to die or develop impairments before drawing their first breath — meant only tragedy and heartache. Now there is hope.

Dec 2, 2014 Jeff Wilser
(Shutterstock)

Welcome to the Future

Medical breakthroughs are close to home

Dramatic medical and technological advancements always grab my attention. They cause me to pause and contemplate how incredible the human mind can be. We create such remarkable things. But our achievements and creativity don’t have to be as groundbreaking as fetal surgery in order to influence society.

Dec 1, 2014 Christine Calvin
Design by Lily Therens (elements courtesy of Shutterstock)

Content Marketing Starter Kit

3 basics that will make an impact

Sometimes the best way to stand out is to stick to the basics and nail them. Before cooking up an elaborate six-part blog post series complete with diagrams, infographics, and a really neat flowchart on how to choose the best frozen turkey for your teen driver, take a step back and resolve to start small. The following ideas will help get you started:

Nov 26, 2014 Melissa Sorcic
(shutterstock)

How Much for the Right to Pollute?

Traveling this holiday? Consider your fuel...

California’s Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (AB32) requires the state’s major industry sectors to return California’s emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. To pay for AB32’s associated Cap-and-Trade Program, the cost of gasoline and diesel fuels will increase approximately 12 cents per gallon beginning Jan. 1, 2015.

Nov 26, 2014 Zuza Hicks
Powerhouse 16, opening soon in midtown, includes 50 market-rate apartment units.

(photo: Chase Hearn)

Opening Doors — Lots of Them

Multifamily construction plays catch-up with surging demand.

From the unmarred concrete sidewalk along Riverine Way, above Richards Boulevard in the city’s River District, you can take a slow 360-turn and view the past, present and future of housing development in Sacramento. You’ll likely be standing alone, since the street is only one bone of an incomplete skeleton that will eventually support the mixed-use urban infill taking shape around it.

Nov 25, 2014 Kevin McKenna
(shutterstock)

Speed Isn’t Everything

Snail of Approval Awards celebrate local business and the slow food movement

Sacramento is America’s Farm-to Fork capital for many reasons: fresh, seasonal food available year-round, almost 8,000 acres of boutique farms, and the largest Certified Farmers’ Market in California. Last month, Slow Food Sacramento recognized seven local businesses for their commitment to providing products and services that use regionally grown seasonal produce, honoring them with the Snail of Approval award and decal.

Nov 19, 2014 Shannon Haslinger
Illustrated by Zuza Hicks with elements from Shutterstock

On the Cover: Web of Thieves

Big-name cyberattacks make headlines, but smaller businesses have more to lose.

In cyberattacks against multimillion-dollar companies, computer criminals break in and steal personal information from millions of customers. Though there will be big losses and maybe a high-profile resignation, the reality is, these retail giants will live to sell another day. But the stories that won’t make the front pages involve the most frequent targets, whose survival isn’t guaranteed: small businesses.

Nov 18, 2014 Russell Nichols
(shutterstock)

Stop, Drop, Open Up Shop

The region’s new Small Business Development Center sends a clear message: We want YOU for the Capital Region

Existing business expansion is the single biggest source of job creation in the United States, accounting for nearly two-thirds of new jobs nationally, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s why the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce is bolstering small businesses by kicking off a one-stop shop for regional employers looking to grow and expand.

Nov 17, 2014 John Blomster
Seriously Jim? It's April.  

(shutterstock)

Come On, Confess!

We want your holiday party horror story

Tis the season for sharing! In the spirit of the holiday season, tell us your office holiday party horror story (anonymously, of course). Next month we’ll share the most cringe-worthy as well as advice on damage control — in case anything goes awry this year. 

Don’t be a Scrooge … You know you’ve got one.  

Nov 17, 2014 Allison Joy

Growing the Anti-Growth City

Acuity with Matt Yancey

Matt Yancey has been selected as the new CEO of the Davis Chamber of Commerce after serving more than seven years as the director of business and economic development at the Sacramento Metro Chamber. So how do you grow a city that’s been historically anti-growth?

Nov 17, 2014 Christine Calvin