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Week In Review: Mosquitoes, Redevelopment and Bread

Some of the top stories from the past week in Walnut Creek

On Friday, Contra Costa Mosquito & Vector Control District officials announced their inspectors had detected West Nile virus in a dead American crow found in Walnut Creek.

The discovery marks Contra Costa County's first confirmed incident of the virus this year, a district spokeswoman said.

A bird near South Main Street and Newell Avenue also was infected with West Nile virus.

The crow was found on Wednesday near the Countrywood Shopping Center at Bancroft Road and Treat Boulevard.

Also on Friday, Walnut Creek and other cities lost their redevelopment agencies.

The change doesn't affect Walnut Creek as much as it does other cities, but the agency has helped build parking garages and low-income housing in the past.

Without the agency, future housing projects and home loan programs could be eliminated.

The state budget agreement signed Thursday dissolves city and county redevelopment agencies throughout California as of July 1.

On Thursday, the Bay Area News Group announced top-level newsroom management changes Thursday that put San Jose-based editors in charge of operations for the Contra Costa Times and Oakland Tribune for the first time.

Bay Area News Group-East Bay's two top Walnut Creek-based editors – Executive Editor Kevin Keane and Managing Editor Pete Wevurski – are out.

Bert Robinson, Mercury News managing editor, is now in charge of all news gathering for the organizations, according to an internal memo.

On Wednesday, the latest Horizon Leadership Series Q&A was held with Rep. John Garamendi as the guest speaker.

The session opened with the Democratic congressman's “roast” on Comedy Central’s Colbert Report earlier this month.

Garamendi said he agreed to do the interview with Colbert because his staff told him it would be “cool” if he did it. He said the interview was actually fun and his wife thought it was hilarious.

Garamendi moved to more serious topics after the Colbert question and spent a lot of time discussing the national debt.

He also discussed the Afghanistan war and health care reform.

On Monday, Panera Bread opened its doors in the former Hollywood Video store in the Countrywood shopping center.

The building at the corner of Bancroft Road and Treat Boulevard had been vacant for more than a year after Hollywood Video closed up shop.

Rob Lew, the Panera Bread store's manager, said the business had a busy first day.

The new store employs 50 people. It has indoor and outdoor seating as well as a drive-through window.

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