Don Ashton, the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) from El Dorado County provided us with an update on the accomplishments, challenges and economic developments in the county.  Don and his wife live in Cool and have raised foster children. Some of the challenges in running the county are budgetary.  The county gets most of its funding from the state, but most of that money has to be spent according to state laws or guidelines.  Recent accomplishments of the County include: making upgrades to properties so that the county is no longer under an ADA Consent Decree; renovating county buildings for earthquake and other safety issues; building a very large new public safety facility for the Sheriff's Department; building a new juvenile hall; put a 3-year IT Strategic Plan in place; secured $2M in grants to help the homeless; and by mid-2017 having all department head positions filled.  Economic developments included reducing the vacancy rate in the El Dorado Hills Business Park from 26% to 13% and some hotels and IT companies are moving to the county soon.  What's New items included: having to deal with legal recreational cannabis sales; vegetation management to prevent wildfires, state housing requirements, a new voting HW/SW system, and the use of Voting Centers instead of polling places.  One big issue on the horizon is $350 million in unfunded pension liabilities.
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