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More than 13,000 marijuana plants found and one person arrested connected to the service of a search warrant in the case. The Lake County Sheriff’s Narcotics Unit did a routine overflight in April and found a major pot garden on the South Fork of Scotts Creek, a remote area west of Lakeport. They served a search warrant this past Monday morning with BLM Rangers and found a man there wearing camouflage. He was arrested and the grow site mowed down. There were also two tents with food inside, marijuana being irrigated using a gravity feed drip irrigation system, diverting water from a spring. 13,060 marijuana plants in four separate plots found and pulled. Jose Armando Gutierrez – Mardueno of Brentwood arrested for the cultivation of marijuana, possession of marijuana for sale and resisting arrest.

A man from Santa Rosa ID’d as the victim of a fatal motorcycle crash Wednesday afternoon in Ukiah. The man, whose name has not been released, was driving the bike west on Highway 20 with a woman on the back when he crossed the double yellow lines on a curve and collided with a tractor trailer coming the other way. The motorcycle driver tried to avoid a crash by swerving to the right and hitting the brakes but the bike still hit the truck. Both the driver and passenger were taken to hospitals where the driver later died and passenger has major injuries. The truck driver wasn’t hurt.

A record high for Lake County crop values with the county’s wine grape and pear crops reportedly hitting more than $101 million in 2015. Reporter Claire Beverly…

Lake County Ag Commissioner Steve Hajik tells the Press Democrat it’s the first time ever going over $100 million for the county, with the gross value of the grape crop at $63 million, a 7 percent increase over 2014, and the pears at $26 million, a 21 percent increase. And he says for the first time in many years, there are enough pears that most pear growers have contracts with canneries. On the flip side, walnuts did not do as well. Their gross value was down 25 percent to $5.4 million and the price per ton down 19 percent.

Hoberg’s Resort has gotten approval for a deferred payment plan to clean up their property, which was destroyed in the Valley Fire. Reporter CB with the story…

On Thursday the Lake County Board of Supervisors voted yes on a request from Hoberg’s for the payment plan for dump fees, although it will not be an interest-free deferment. Lake County News reports the disposal cost is estimated at around $250,000 and the resort wants a six-month grace period before they start to pay then four years to get it paid. Part of the delay was that Hoberg’s had a post-fire sawmill plan for the property that was squashed by the county after too many logs were stored there, and more recently they’ve had to test several samples of the debris there to make sure it is safe to put in the Eastlake Landfill or whether it had to be taken to another landfill.

CAL FIRE’s suspending burn permits in 14 counties including Lake and Mendocino. They say despite the winter and spring rains, drought conditions are increasing fire danger in the area so they’re suspending burn permits starting Monday, June 27th. It bans all outdoor burning except for campfires within organized campgrounds or on private property with landowner permission. Campfires may be permitted if they’re maintained so as to prevent spreading to the wildland. You can get a campfire permit at a CAL FIRE station or online at

The President Barack Obama coming to Calif. and the North Coast where he’s meeting Facebook’s billionaire CEO Mark Zuckerberg and is raising money for campaigns of Democratic candidates. Obama speaking today at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, a conference for aspiring entrepreneurs at Stanford. According to the Obama administration there will be entrepreneurs from more than 140 countries there. The Deputy National Security Advisor says promoting entrepreneurship helps support collaboration around the world and says the more our country helps emerging economies, the more they become markets for American goods. Obama’s panel with Zuckerberg airs on Facebook Live.

An outbreak of toxic blue-green algae in the Russian River last summer’s got officials checking the river consistently for the goo. The Press Democrat reports multiple local agencies putting together a coordinated effort to monitor conditions in the river and follow specific guidelines about how to respond if there’s an algae outbreak. The Sonoma County Health Officer Karen Milman says this year they’re being proactive. That means the continuous tracking of water temperature, oxygen levels, pH, river flows and other information being watched so scientists will know if conditions are favorable to blue-green algae blooms. Then they’d start serious testing of water at public beaches and utilize other measures too to detect trouble.

The recently approved Lakeport budget includes bucks for the police department, but it means street improvement projects have to be put on hold. The Record Bee reports the budget was unanimously passed by the city council Tuesday. It sets aside more than $2 million to the police department so a 12th officer can be paid for along with a school resource officer. The money the Finance director says should also help with recruitment and retention. There’s been flat growth in the city so almost a 1/2 million dollars will be cut from roads. Money just for emergencies, critical road repair and supporting utility infrastructure in the city’s right of ways.

A Lake County Deputy District Attorney asked and got more time in a murder case but the suspect’s lawyer opposed. The Record Bee reports the Deputy DA Sharon Lerman asked for the delay as Billy Ray Mount’s lawyer Anakalia Sullivan said her client should get a speedy trial. Mount accused in the murder of Steven Galvin in July of last year. His lawyer previously informed there would be a 3 week continuance but said since it was the second filing of the case it should move along quicker. But the DDA said they had to find new witnesses and there’s DNA evidence that’s not been available for discovery. The judge said yes to the continuance and said it was within the defendant’s rights to a speedy trial. The trial is supposed to begin next Wednesday. Mount’s in jail on $1.5 million bail.

Congressman Mike Thompson’s Small Business Healthcare Relief Act has passed the House. The bill, Thompson says will help small business owners, workers and their families. It passed out of the House Committee on Ways and Means first, last week. It would allow small employers to continue offering Health Reimbursement Arrangements, or HRAs, to employees so they can get affordable health insurance. Right now Treasury Department guidance with Obamacare gives limited HRA’s to small businesses.

A small fire reported in front of a shopping center in Ukiah. A man waiting for a bus by the Orchard Plaza Center says he heard a popping sound and saw a bush on fire near him. As firefighters headed that way, an employee of the Redwood Credit Union ran there with a fire extinguisher then Ukiah Police got to the scene to direct traffic out of the area and Cal Fire and the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority went to work on the small fire. They had the fire out fast but stayed and checked for hot spots. The cause, so far, “undetermined.”

A new interim school superintendent’s been appointed in the Fort Bragg Unified School District. Last week the Board of Trustees appointed Rebecca Walker, the former principal at the high school, as interim chief after the resignation of Superintendent Chuck Bush earlier this month. The board will start a full search for the position next year with Walker’s contract not expiring until June 30th, 2017.

The Fort Bragg City Council’s read a revised version of the Environmental Impact Report for the proposed Central Coast transfer station on Highway 20. The facility, if approved will replace the county’s Caspar transfer station and the Pudding Creek Road transfer station. It also means there would have to be a land swap to add 12.5 acres of forest from Russian Gulch State Park to forest land in exchange for 17 acres near Highway 20. Some of the public comment on the deal is that forest land could be logged and the land near the Highway includes pygmy forest that would be cleared. There’s also concern the new station is near and upstream of the City of Fort Bragg’s new reservoir now under construction.

A couple recently married in Fort Collins, CO had a harrowing experience during picture taking… the groom bit by a rattlesnake. Johnny and Laura Benson went thru their ceremony but before the reception, the couple went to a local reservoir for a photo shoot and between shots, the rattlesnake bite. The groom looked down at his ankle and sure enough, bite marks. The couple took off to the hospital after a park ranger saw them and helped. They made it back to their party in an hour and some ingenious guest found time to buy fake snakes which every danced with and the bride tossed one, instead of a garter.

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