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A Lake County deputy is on life support after he and his 11-year-old son were swept out to sea by a rogue wave near Mendocino Point. The Deputy was face down in the water Monday and had been in for more than 10 minutes when Mendocino volunteer firefighters pulled him out. He was resuscitated and then flown to a hospital in Butte County. His son was said to be alert and physically in good condition when he was pulled from the ocean. There is no exact word yet on how they ended up in the water in the rocky area where there is no walkable beach and it’s also not clear whether the they were both swept out by the wave or the father went in after the son. Lake County News reports witnesses saying at one point they were about 100 feet from the shore.

The name’s been released of a man from Middletown who died following a car crash in Lower Lake last week. The CHP says Jerry Verlin Cheesman was driving north on Highway 29 north of Diener Drive Thursday night when he lost control and the car went off the road and hit a tree. The CHP says Cheesman was found outside of the car and it wasn’t clear if he had gotten out on his own or had been thrown from the car during the crash. He was flown to Santa Rosa Memorial where he later died. The CHP says drugs or alcohol are not suspected but have not yet been ruled out until test results come back. They are also awaiting autopsy results to rule out a medical condition.

The Mendocino County Office of Education is hosting a job fair this Saturday, April 23, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Ukiah. They are encouraging not only educators and administrators, but also those with experience in clerical or accounting, building and grounds maintenance, bus driving and maintenance, food service, nursing and physical therapy. The Office of Education says Mendocino County schools have about 80 current job vacancies which will be showcased at the Education Jobs Fair. Northern California colleges and university programs will be on hand to talk with applicants about requirements for teaching credentials and opportunities to acquire additional job skills. For more information go to the website edjoin.org. The job fair is at the Mendocino County Office of Education building at 2240 Old River Road in Ukiah.

A controlled burn is planned in Hopland by Calfire. The University of California Hopland Research and Extension Center (HREC) working with Cal Fire is conducting the burn at the extension center east of Hopland tomorrow morning at 9:00 AM. Fire officials say it should last until 6:00 PM with smoke visible throughout the Ukiah and Hopland areas. They say it’s to help with ongoing research in vegetation management in California chaparral. They will have it all under extremely tight restrictions and say if there’s any indication the research Vegetation Management Program cannot be conducted in a safe manner, due to high winds or local fire activity, the control burn will be cancelled.

A date for the opening of the new Willits bypass has been updated. The Caltrans bypass Construction Manager went in front of the Willits City Council last week saying they intend to have the bypass complete in November. He told the council there’s an opening celebration tentatively set for Sept. 16th but contracts allow the contractors to complete as late as Nov. 8th. He says they’re working closely with the contractors to get the bypass open as soon as possible, but he also says he’ can’t definitively say what the actual opening day will be. Full time construction is supposed to start the first week of next month, weather permitting.

The Little Lake Fire District has canned the parcel tax it was going for so the dept. could pay for a new firehouse. An ad hoc committee met a couple Friday’s ago and decided not to go after the tax initiative for various reasons, like the ballot already being quite complex this November, with other local tax and initiatives. The committee saying they didn’t want the parcel tax to get lost on the ballot so they’ll research other methods of raising money, that might just take longer. The firehouse would be built where it stands today. There are already architectural renderings and a scale mockup that can be shown to the public for public approval of the funding. A fundraiser in June for Frontier Days is still planned.

A group of baby geese got separated from their mom on Highway 101 near River Road. The babies were rescued and relocated by a CHP officer who went to the gaggle after being alerted by concerned drivers. The CHP reports some drivers called Saturday night to get help rescuing the birds who they say were on the edge of Highway 101 at River Road. An officer patrolling the area found the mother goose and reunited her 5 goslings with her saying it looked like they were prepared to walk right into traffic to be with her.

The grass crop is thicker and drying out so the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority is encouraging property owners to mow their lawns. Fire officials say the grass is still pretty green, but it will be a short time before it’s dry, increasing the fire danger. Yearly inspections for tall grass and weeds are beginning soon too so the dept. will let property owners know how to maintain a fire safe property. They also remind homeowners that leaves and other debris can build up in gutters or on parts of the roof over the winter months which, after it dries out, can also create a significant fire hazard.

A man from Petaluma has been arrested on suspicion of DUI after walking into a CHP office to report a crash he was in over the weekend. Donald Gendron went to cops yesterday, waited in the lobby of the Marin County CHP office and when several officers noted a strong smell of alcohol coming from the front office, they started interviewing him. Gendron talked to one officer and the officer said Gendron smelled like alcohol, had red and watery eyes and showed other signs of intoxication. He told the officer he drove himself to the office. He then failed a sobriety test and was booked into Marin County Jail.

Many Californians believe the state’s still in extreme drought conditions, even after all the rain this winter, so they say they’ll keep on conserving water. That according to a new poll released last Thursday by the Field Research Corporation. They sampled 800 registered voters across Calif., the fifth time since April of 2014. The intent to track Californians’ changing attitudes about the historic 4 year long drought. The Field Poll found 76 percent of those who responded called the water shortage serious last year, now it’s at 62 percent. The Sierra snowpack is at 66 percent right now, a major improvement over last year at this time when it was just 5 percent.

A local economic expert says Mendocino County should attract tourism by positioning the area for its “wine, food and weed.” The economics professor at Sonoma State University and director of the Center for Regional Economic Analysis told a group together for this year’s Agriculture Business Coalition Economic Outlook to hop on board before someone else does it. Robert Eyler says people are looking for not only a place to eat five-star food and drink five-star wine, but also to smoke five-star weed. He says Mendocino County could be at the forefront of the movement but says Lake County could also attract the same sort of tourism dollars. Some in attendance at the conference said the challenges could be a lack of housing and inadequate broadband infrastructure.

New structural firefighting turnouts are coming to the Potter Valley Fire Dept. for most of its 25 volunteers. The Fire Chief says they generally only buy one or two sets of new turnouts that cost anywhere from $1,000 to $2,000 per set. He says the bigger buy was possible after several donations from the public. There have been 2 fundraisers ea. Year, both are upcoming, the annual Poker Tournament, which lands on Saturday, April 23rd this year and the yearly Firemen’s Chicken BBQ, which will be on May 28th as part of the Potter Valley Memorial Day Celebration.

A man accused of the murder of a another man in Fort Bragg last year is being arraigned. Fort Bragg Police say they arrested Caleb Dain Silver in connection to the death of Dennis Boardman last December. Silver’s been in jail in Santa Clara County since the murder, but under another name. He’s back in Mendocino County as of last weekend where he’s held on suspicion of murder, personal use of a deadly weapon, vehicle theft, receiving stolen property and a misdemeanor charge of tampering with evidence. He is being held without bail. His arraignment set for today.

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