October 12, 2012 § Leave a comment
Located in Modesto, California, the Alley Cat Guardians is a nonprofit group that was formed to provide a solution to the booming feral cat population. The organization offers low-cost spaying and neutering for homeless cats and companion cats, provided owners can demonstrate financial need. The facility hours are Monday through Thursday, from 11 to 4, during which hours spaying and neutering services are available for cats and dogs. The organization offers additional services at the time of surgery, including rabies vaccines, microchipping, and deworming.
The Alley Cat Guardians prefer that clients make appointments in advance so they can ensure adequate staffing. However, the facility does offer a walk-in vaccine clinic every Tuesday and Thursday, and one Saturday a month, between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. For more information about hours of operation and services offered, visit www.alleycatguardians.com.
About the author: A resident of Modesto, Andrew Katakis is the President of California Equity Management Group, Inc., and of Granite Realty. He is a supporter of the Alley Cat Guardians.
October 5, 2012 § Leave a comment
In an unexpected benefit to the housing slump affecting the real estate market, Stanislaus County now ranks among the nation’s top-20 metropolitan areas in terms of housing affordability.
According to a recent report in the Modesto Bee, median home prices stood at $129,000 at the beginning of 2012. As a result, more than 90 percent of the homes sold in the region qualify as “affordable” for middle-income families.
The real estate market continues to move through a correction. However, several promising signs present hope for improvement. These include slower rates of foreclosure and an unemployment rate that appears to have stabilized. In addition, figures reported by DataQuick show an increase in sales during the first six months of 2012 as compared to the previous year.
Lower mortgage payments represent another promising sign for future sales. At $893 a month, the typical payment stands at its lowest point since 1988, when adjusted for inflation.
About Andrew Katakis: A native of Turlock, California, Andrew Katakis brings more than 20 years of real estate expertise to his service on behalf of the communities of Stanislaus County and beyond.
September 10, 2012 § Leave a comment
The premier resource for information, education, advocacy, and networking on behalf of unclaimed property professionals, the Unclaimed Property Professional Organization (UPPO) strives to be the industry leader in compliance and reform. The organization was founded in 1992 with a group of 40 individuals who represented 34 corporations. These members helped shape and develop UPPO’s mission and goals and, in 1993, elected the first governing body for the organization.
The current strategic plan for the UPPO consists of five divisions: marketing and membership, professional development, advocacy, leadership development and governance, and financial stability. Through this plan, the organization hopes to demonstrate its commitment to its members and the unclaimed property industry. UPPO also serves as a forum for advocacy, discussion, and education, enabling members to network and learn more about best practices. Furthermore, the organization encourages a strict code of ethics and the return of property to the rightful owners if possible.
About Andrew Katakis: The President of California Asset Recovery, Andrew Katakis supplements his career with membership to UPPO.
August 15, 2012 § Leave a comment
Trap, Neuter, Return or Trap, Neuter, Release (TNR) is a humane way of curtailing the stray cat population without causing harm to the cats. In fact, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) endorsed the process as the only humane and most effective way to manage the feral cat population.
So, how does the process work? The ASPCA, other nonprofit organizations, and generous veterinarians offer TNR clinics or services where stray cats can be neutered or spayed and released back into their habitat. Neighborhood residents can trap the cats, bring them to these clinics, and then bring them home. There are many advantages to TNR: most obviously, fewer litters of kittens entering the world and fewer cats entering animal shelters. Additionally, fewer cats are euthanized, and there is a higher rate of adoption from shelters. Overall, the program is a great way to tackle the cat population without resorting to euthanasia.
About Andrew Katakis: The President of California Asset Recovery, Andrew Katakis is also a supporter of Alley Cat Guardians, a TNR organization in California.
July 31, 2012 § Leave a comment
A member of the Modesto business community for more than two decades, Andrew Katakis supports a number of nonprofit groups, including Alley Cat Guardians and Community Hospice. The latter organization was established in 1980, six years after the hospice concept of providing dignified care for the terminally ill was introduced into the United States from Great Britain.
Community Hospice is supported by a network of committed volunteers throughout South San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties. The organization emphasizes a philosophy of comfort care, with holistic services provided in private homes, senior living communities, and skilled nursing facilities. Community Hospice also maintains an inpatient facility, the Alexander Cohen Hospice House in Hughson.
One of Community Hospice’s most vital services involves coordinating care between an interdisciplinary team of nurses, dieticians, medical directors, social workers, and home aides. The group strives to provide integrated symptom and pain management services, offering patients access to medications and medical equipment. Volunteers also strive to meet patient and family needs, providing companionship, emotional support, and errand running. Andrew Katakis takes pride in maintaining a strong local presence through involvement with Community Hospice and other Modesto organizations.