Our View: A look behind the scenes at Rocklin Citizens Academy

By: Krissi KhoKhobashvili
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As of Tuesday’s City Council meeting, I can now proudly call myself a graduate of the Rocklin Citizens Academy.

Every Thursday for five weeks, I’ve spent time with fellow residents at different city departments, learning what makes Rocklin run. We also got the chance to question department heads, who, I learned, never miss a curveball.

Did you know you need a building permit to install a new water heater? Did you know our firefighters work out every shift to stay in top form? Or that the police station is home to a solar array that saves us money?

It has been an eye-opening experience, from learning about the constant work required to maintain the parks we love to the roads we use every day and the emergency response vehicles so important to our safety. I learned what it feels like in the backseat of a police car (not so great) and the driver’s seat of a fire engine (awesome, even though I wasn’t allowed to drive it.)

I also got to know the people who help run our city, and I’d encourage any resident to do the same. I now know that Public Services Director Rick Forstall barbecues the best tri-tip I’ve ever had, and that Police Chief Ron Lawrence has a soft spot for his dogs.

I also know how hard city leaders work, every day, to make this city the place I’m blessed to call home. And here’s the kicker – they’re all doing it with less money and fewer people than ever before.

It’s great to know how approachable, knowledgeable and nice our city officials are, and I urge Rocklin residents to enroll in the Citizens Academy next time it comes around.

Maybe next time I’ll get to take that fire engine for a spin.