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Elk Grove is a city in Sacramento County, California, located just south of the state capital of Sacramento. It is part of the Sacramento–Arden-Arcade–Roseville Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of 2019, the population of the city was estimated at 174,775. Elk Grove was the fastest-growing city in the U.S. between July 1, 2004, and July 1, 2005 and is presently the second-largest city in Sacramento County.

The City of Elk Grove incorporated on July 1, 2000. It is a general law city with a council/manager form of government. One of Elk Grove's most significant aspects is the Elk Grove Unified School District, which is the city's second largest employer.

Spanish explorer Gabriel Moraga entered the region in 1808, naming the valley "Sacramento Valley" in honor of Sacramento, the Holy Sacrament in Spanish, giving the northerly city of Sacramento its name. A writer on Moraga's expedition wrote of the region:

"Canopies of oaks and cottonwoods, many festooned with grapevines, overhung both sides of the blue current. Birds chattered in the trees and big fish darted through the pellucid depths. The air was like champagne, and (the Spaniards) drank deep of it, drank in the beauty around them."

Elk Grove was founded in 1850 as a stage stop for travelers coming from Sacramento and the San Francisco Bay Area, when the Elk Grove Hotel and Stage Stop was opened by James Hall and the town was named after it. In 1868 the Western Division of the Central Pacific Railroad came through about a mile east of Elk Grove. At this new location another hotel was built to accommodate travelers and was named the Elk Grove Hotel.

In the following decades, Elk Grove remained a small farming community with little urban development. In the late 1980s, suburban development projects began to spring up around the community, specifically in the north near Sacramento. These were meant to serve Sacramento's population, as well as San Francisco commuters seeking a commuting community relatively near the San Francisco Bay Area where they could reside. Such changes triggered a period of rapid growth. On July 1, 2000, Elk Grove incorporated as a city. The growth peaked in 2004 and 2005, when Elk Grove was declared the fastest growing city in the US.

Apple Inc. manufactured its iMac line in Elk Grove as late as 2002. After many of those tasks were offshored, the facility was converted into an AppleCare call center.

In 2008, Elk Grove suffered heavily from the subprime mortgage crisis due to its suburban nature.

Demographics
Historical population
Census Pop. %±
1960 2,205 —
1970 3,721 68.8%
1980 10,959 194.5%
1990 17,483 59.5%
2000 59,984 243.1%
2010 153,015 155.1%
Est. 2019 174,775 14.2%
U.S. Decennial Census
Racial composition 2018
White 45.9%
—Non-Hispanic 38.1%
Asian American 28.4%
Hispanic or Latino (of any race) 18.0%
Black or African American 11.1%
Two or More Races 8.4%
Education
The Elk Grove Unified School District is the fifth largest school district in California and one of the fastest growing school districts in the nation. Located in southern Sacramento County, the district covers 320 square miles (830 km2), one-third of the county. For the 2002–03 school year, the district served more than 52,500 students, and grew to 62,767 students in the 2016–2017 school year. Those students attend 40 elementary schools, 9 middle schools, 9 high schools and 7 alternative high schools.

There are also several private schools in town. A local community college, Cosumnes River College, offers both career training and a transfer program to four-year universities. Located nearby are California State University, Sacramento and the University of California, Davis. Elk Grove is also the home of the private six-year Universalist college Quest Seminary. In 2013, California Northstate University College of Pharmacy, which offers a Doctor of Pharmacy degree program, relocated to Elk Grove (near Interstate 5).

Public libraries
The new Elk Grove Public Library is located at 8900 Elk Grove Boulevard in a modern two-story building. It moved to this location in 2008 from its old building one block east. The library is part of the broader Sacramento Public Library system. The Elk Grove Library also serves neighboring communities such as Vineyard, Wilton, Sloughhouse, and Rancho Murieta. Additional local libraries supplement neighborhoods, such as the public Franklin High Library.

Government
Beginning in 2012, voters elect the mayor for a two-year term. Prior to 2012, the mayor's position was a one-year term and was chosen by the city council. The remaining four positions on the city council are elected by districts to four-year terms.

On November 8, 2016, Steve Ly became the second directly elected mayor following Gary Davis. He is the first ethnic Hmong mayor in the United States, having come here at the age of four with his family as refugees from Laos after the end of the Vietnam War. The remaining councilmembers are Darren Suen (District 1), Pat Hume (District 2), Steve Detrick (District 3) and Stephanie Nguyen (District 4).

Elk Grove is in California's 7th congressional district, represented by Democrat Ami Bera.

The Elk Grove Police Department provides policing services for the city while the Cosumnes Community Services District runs the fire department and parks department.

Economy
Employers
Top employers in Elk Grove in 2019
# Employer # of Employees
1 Apple Inc. 5,000
2 Elk Grove Unified School District 4,055
3 CA Correctional Health Care Services 1,124
4 Cosumnes Community Services District 779
5 Walmart 515
6 Kaiser Permanente 443
7 Raley's/Bel Air Markets 398
8 City of Elk Grove 347
9 Alldata LLC 376
10 Nissan of Elk Grove 301
Other companies based in Elk Grove include Citizens Telecommunications Company of California and Frontier Communications of the Southwest.

Infrastructure
Buses
Elk Grove is serviced by a fared bus system called e-Tran that traverses many of the city's main routes.

Rail
Amtrak California San Joaquin intercity rail and Altamont Corridor Express commuter rail are expected to be brought directly to Elk Grove in 2021.

Sister cities
Elk Grove is a sister city of Concepci?n de Ataco in El Salvador.

Notable people
Main category: People from Elk Grove, California
Arik Armstead (born 1993), linebacker for NFL's San Francisco 49ers
Armond Armstead (born 1990), defensive tackle for CFL's Toronto Argonauts
Ami Bera (born 1965), physician; U.S. Representative, 7th district, California
Scott Boras (born 1952), baseball sports agent who was named "Most Powerful Sports Agent" in 2013 by Forbes
Lance Briggs (born 1980), linebacker for NFL's Chicago Bears
Dylan Carlson (baseball) (born 1998), outfielder for the St. Louis Cardinals
Bill Cartwright (born 1957), player and coach for NBA's Chicago Bulls
Earl Gage Jr. (ca. 1927-2017), firefighter
Kyle Larson (born 1992), Racecar driver
Jeremy Reeves, Grammy winning producer
Kenny Wiggins, lineman for NFL's Detroit Lions
Scott Smith (born 1979), mixed martial artist
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