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LAKE TRANSIT WORKERS VOTE TO STRIKE JH 07/29/13

LAKE TRANSIT WORKERS VOTED SUNDAY TO STRIKE UNTIL THEY SETTLE THEIR NEW CONTRACT.

PARATRANSIT SERVICES, THE WASHINGTON BASED NON-PROFIT THAT OPERATES LAKE TRANSIT, HAS BEEN IN ONGOING NEGOTIATIONS FOR A NEW THREE YEAR CONTRACT WITH MEMBERS OF THE TEAMSTERS LOCAL 665, WHICH REPRESENTS 35 LAKE TRANSIT WORKERS. PARATRANSIT HAS OFFERED WORKERS A 2.2 PERCENT WAGE INCREASE, BUT UNION MEMBERS OVERWHELMINGLY REJECTED THE PROPOSAL. DURING YESTERDAYS MEETING, UNION MEMBERS VOTED TO STRIKE INDEFINITELY, WITH THE STRIKE BEGINNING AT MIDNIGHT SUNDAY. AT LEAST THREE DRIVERS DISAGREED WITH THE UNION, AND SUBMIT THEIR MEMBERSHIP RESIGNATION AND ARE EXPECTED TO BE DRIVING DURING THE STRIKE. THE STRIKE WILL LIMIT TRANSIT SERVICES THROUGHOUT LAKE COUNTY, HOWEVER, ACCORDING TO PARATRANSIT, THE COMPANY WILL WORK TO KEEP AS MANY ROUTS RUNNING AS POSSIBLE. SERVICE UPDATES WILL BE POSTED ON THE COMPANIES WEB SITE AT WWW.LAKETRANSIT.ORG.

LAKEPORT MAN CHARGED WITH SEX ACTS ON A CHILD JH 07/29/13

A LAKEPORT MAN WAS ARRESTED AFTER ALLEGATIONS THAT HE SEXUALLY ABUSED A NINE YEAR OLD GIRL.

THE CHILDS FOSTER MOTHER ACCUSED 42-YEAR-OLD ALFONSO AVALOS-CHAVEZ OF THE ABUSE WHILE HE DATED THE GIRLS BIOLOGICAL MOTHER OVER A TWO YEAR PERIOD. AFTER AUTHORITIES INTERVIEWED THE CHILD, OFFICERS BELIEVED THERE WAS SUFFICIENT PROBABLE CAUSE TO ARREST AVALOS-CHAVEZ. HE WAS ARRESTED WITHOUT INCIDENT ON FRIDAY, AND CHARGED WITH 15 COUNTS OF LEWD AND LASCIVIOUS ACTS WITH A CHILD UNDER 14 YEARS OF AGE, AS WELL AS 10 COUNTS OF ORAL COPULATION. THE INVESTIGATION IS ONGOING AND ANYONE WITH INFORMATION IS ASKED TO CONTACT OFFICER GARY BASOR AT THE LAKEPORT POLICE DEPARTMENT AT 263-5491.

UKIAH CITY COUNCIL TO DISCUSS TAX SHARING AGREEMENT JH 07/29/13

THE UKIAH CITY COUNCIL WILL DISCUSS A DRAFT TAX-SHARING AGREEMENT WITH MENDOCINO COUNTY AT A SPECIAL MEETING SCHEDULED FOR THIS EVENING.

THE CITY AND COUNTY HAVE BEEN TRYING TO AGREE ON A FORMULA FOR SHARING SALES TAX REVENUE FOR YEARS, AND APPEARED TO BE VERY CLOSE TO THAT GOAL AT THE END OF LAST YEAR AS AD-HOC COMMITTEES FROM EACH AGENCY REACHED AN AGREEMENT ON 90 PERCENT OF A LIST OF PRINCIPLES. ACCORDING TO A REPORT FOR THE MEETING, THE DRAFT MASTER TAX SHARING AGREEMENT COVERED: LAND USE AND PLANNING WITHIN THE CITY OF UKIAHS SPHERE OF INFLUENCE, SHARING SALES TAX ON TAXABLE SALES WITHIN THE COUNTYS UKIAH VALLEY AREA PLAN AND EXISTING CITY LIMITS, SHARING PROPERTY TAX WITHIN AN AREA ANNEXED BY THE CITY, AND TRANSIENT OCCUPANCY TAX SHARING. THE MEETING IS SCHEDULED FOR 5:30 PM TODAY IN THE COUNCIL CHAMBERS ON SEMINARY AVENUE.

ROAD WORK TODAY JH 07/29/13

ROAD WORK WILL CAUSE MINOR TRAFFIC DELAYS.

THE REPLACEMENT OF CRASH CUSHIONS WILL BE DONE ON HIGHWAY 101 FROM THE SOUTH UKIAH OVERHEAD TO THE ORR CREEK BRIDGE TODAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY FROM 6 AM TO 4 PM. SOUTHBOUND TRAFFIC WILL BE RESTRICTED TO ONE LANE. MOTORISTS MAY EXPERIENCE MINOR SLOWDOWNS.

A WELL WILL BE REMOVED ON HIGHWAY 1 NEAR ABALONE STREET TODAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY FROM 8 AM TO 5 PM. ONE WAY TRAFFIC CONTROL WILL BE IN EFFECT WITH 5 MINUTE DELAYS ANTICIPATED.

COSTCO TO BE DISCUSSED AT TUESDAYS SUPERVISORS MEETING

JH 07/29/13

THE MENDOCINO COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS WILL DISCUSS A LETTER TO REQUEST MEETING WITH COSTCO ABOUT PUTTING A STORE ON THE DEVELOPERS DIVERSIFIED REALTY LAND NORTH OF UKIAH.

THOUGH VOTERS SHOT DOWN A PROPOSAL IN 2009 TO TURN THE FORMER MASONITE SITE INTO A LARGE SHOPPING CENTER FEATURING A COSTCO, THE COUNTY STILL BELIEVES THIS IS THE BEST LOCATION FOR SUCH A STORE. THE COUNTY BELIEVES THE AIRPORT PARK BOULEVARD LOCATION THAT THE CITY HAS BEEN TRYING TO GET COSTCO TO BUILD AT HAS TOO MANY ACCESS ISSUES. A DRAFT LETTER TO NORTHWEST ATLANTIC, COSTCOS REAL ESTATE BROKER, REQUESTS A MEETING TO DISCUSS REVISITING THE USE OF THE DDR PROPERTY. ACCORDING TO THE REPORT, THE COUNTY IS NOW READY TO TAKE ACTION ON ANY IMPEDIMENT TO INFILL DEVELOPMENT ON THIS SITE AND IS SUPPORTIVE OF REZONING THE DDR PROPERTY FOR COSTCO OR ANY OTHER RETAIL OUTLETS OR HOUSING DEVELOPMENTS THAT COULD BE LOCATED AT THIS SITE. THE BOARD WILL CONSIDER FINALIZING AND SENDING THE LETTER DURING TUESDAY MORNINGS MEETING.

COURT RULES IN FAVOR OF MASONITE JH 07/29/13

THE CALIFORNIA COURT OF APPEALS RULED IN FAVOR OF THE MASONITE CORPORATION AND ITS EFFORTS TO REVERSE MENDOCINO COUNTYS APPROVAL OF A PROPOSED MINE NORTH OF UKIAH.

MASONITE, THE DOOR MANUFACTURER THAT STILL OWNS LAND NORTH OF UKIAH, LAST YEAR APPEALED A LOCAL RULING DENYING THE CORPORATIONS PETITION TO SET ASIDE THE COUNTYS APPROVAL OF A 65 ACRE TERRACE MINING OPERATION GRANITE CONSTRUCTION COMPANY PROPOSED TO BUILT ON KUNZLER RANCH ROAD LAND THAT IS ADJACENT TO MASONITES PROPERTY. THURSDAYS RULING REVERSES THAT JUDGMENT AND DIRECTS THE COUNTY TO SET ASIDE CERTIFICATION OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT FOR THE PROJECT AND PREPARE AND CIRCULATE A SUPPLEMENTAL EIR THAT ADDRESSES IDENTIFIED ERRORS. MASONITE CLAIMED IN ITS LAWSUIT THAT THE COUNTY SHOULD HAVE RECIRCULATED THE EIR BECAUSE THE APPROVED MINE PROJECT HAD SIGNIFICANTLY GREATER IMPACTS THAN THE ONE ORIGINALLY PROPOSED.

WITTER SPRINGS FIRE JH 07/29/13

A BRUSH FIRE NEAR A VINEYARD IN THE WITTER SPRINGS AREA WAS PUT OUT QUICKLY THANKS TO FAST ACTING FIREFIGHTERS.

THE FIRE REPORTEDLY STARTED AROUND 1 PM FRIDAY AND WAS CONTAINED BY ABOUT 1:15 EVEN THOUGH FIREFIGHTERS HAD LIMITED ACCESS TO THE FIRE LOCATION. ACCORDING TO OFFICIALS, THE FIRE IS BELIEVED TO HAVE STARTED AFTER A HAWK FLEW INTO SOME POWER LINES.

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