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The Ukiah City Council is still angling to get a high end hotel into the downtown core. The council voted unanimously to bring in some proposals from staff after getting a presentation from a consulting firm out of the Bay Area. The consultant says research shows folks would come stay in an upscale hotel in the city, if it were offered. The research further showed a hotel with about 75 rooms with one large meeting room and a restaurant would be ideal. The consultant also evaluated potential sites, that are currently city-owned parking lots. The $25,000 study is viable for another few months so staffers will also let the city council know how much such a study would cost to be done more frequently.

A man accused of killing another man in Ukiah which he said was self defense will stand trial for the crime. Steven Ryan in court last week for the murder of De’Shaun Davis in November of last year. Ryan’s been charged with murder and a special allegation enhancement for using a firearm for the murder in the 200 block of Vichy Springs Road. Several people including the accused shooter called in the shots fired. Davis was found dead by police and Ryan arrested. His trial starts next summer.

Another massive storm hits Northern Calif. bringing another round of heavy rain, and this time, high winds too. The high wind warning is in effect thru tomorrow which means winds of up to 40 miles an hour with some gusts of 50 to 65 miles an hour are possible. There could be even faster moving winds on higher ridges. The storm is moving in today with up to a half inch of rain and the possibility of thunderstorms tomorrow. Things should start clearing up again by mid-week, but another blast headed our way over the weekend.

Clear Lake sitting at flood stage of 9 feet Rumsey and above over the weekend, even hitting 10 feet early this morning then receding back to 9.87 feet Rumsey. The USGS reports the Cache Creek Dam was also releasing at high volumes of about 4,300 feet per second. Some roads in Lake County closed down from the flooding and other roadwork, so leave extra time for your morning commute. There were some road closures in the region yesterday too, but traffic control was lifted on Highway 20 to Williams and on Highway 16.

The Calif. Coastal Commission is going to hear from a Mendocino Supervisor regarding the Town Plan. The Daily Journal reports 4th District Supervisor Dan Gjerde and county planning staff will speak to the commission regarding one employee’s obstructionist tactics. The amendment has been a topic of discussion for a couple of years after 2nd District Supervisor John McCowen said it was taking too long to resolve disagreements on minor changes of the plan. Gjerde says it’s one staffer who they’ve been having issues with whose been forcing the county and commission to keep working on small issues. Gjerde says it’s up to the board to confront the commission about the employee’s conduct. He also says the employee told him obstructing was part of her job. A presentation is set at the end of March.

The City of Ukiah and its Sanitation District finally have a mediation session set regarding a lawsuit. The first session is May 11th in Santa Rosa. The city attorney says he, the city manager and two members of the city council will attend. He also says the session will be confidential even though they requested it not be. He says if they decide to settle, that will have to go before the public before its agreed to. The city manager also says he has received no response so far from the Sanitation District for a request for a joint meeting regarding the Wastewater Treatment Plant budget or to talk about the purple pipe water project. The two entities share ownership of the Treatment Plant.

A health advisory has been issued in Lake County because of the flooding and another storm with heavy rain. The county warning the public to be aware of how close they are to Clear Lake and flood conditions in their immediate area. They’ve continued to warn not to drive or walk thru running or standing water as it could be contaminated from overflowing sewage systems. Officials saying public sewer districts are overseeing discharges and overflows using with pump trucks and other responses. They warn that flood waters can carry unhealthy substances so you should reduce flow into your drains with strict water conservation measures, wash your hands often, disinfect or trash items that have been in flood water and use a professional service for septic system repair and maintenance.

A cannabis workshop the Lake County Board of Supervisors was hosting this week is being postponed due to weather. The meeting tomorrow was to go over the draft cannabis ordinance but since there’s been extensive local flooding and a new warning, the workshop’s now set for March 7th.

Repairs are continuing at Lake Oroville Dam after the erosion at the emergency spillway and evacuation of area residents. The California Department of Water Resources says as the next round of winter storms hit the area, the outflow from the dam was increased. State officials have upped the outflow from 55,000 cubic feet per second to 60,000 cubic feet. The agency says it was a proactive move which is typical for normal flood control operations ahead of heavy storms. Construction crews are still putting cement, rock and other materials around and into the eroded area of the emergency spillway. Workers there 24/7.

A flood watch is in effect from this afternoon through Tuesday afternoon with a high wind watch from this afternoon into late tonight. The flood watch also warns thunderstorms are possible with a risk of mud and rock slides for mountain roadways. The watches for parts of northwest California including Del Norte, Mendocino, Humboldt and Trinity counties. Some areas could get up to 4 inches of rain between today and tomorrow with higher amounts possible especially in the mountainous regions. The following highways could be impacted by flooding and high winds, the 101, 3, and 162.

Some massive rate hikes in Lake County by P,G&E. The increases for natural gas and electricity but residents getting hammered with higher electric rates. There are complaints about that and in other areas of Northern Calif. for gas hikes. On social media, people posting their frustration with the increases with Lake County users posting on Facebook about 200 times. Some folks stating their PG& E electric bills were doubled around November. Rates could even go up more because of the recent decision against the utility regarding the San Bruno neighborhood explosion. Some got a notice in the mail about a March high usage surcharge coming.

Recent flooding in Hidden Valley Lake has uncovered some living illegally in the area. The Record Bee reports the GM of the Hidden Valley Lake Community Services District says some homes that had been built in the flood basin with two levels had residents on the upper floor with storage or garage space on the lower floor. He says they’re not allowed to live on the first floor, run open electricity near it or close it off like a basement, to stop water flow. He says some that had done that had some damage. He says that means they probably won’t be covered under most insurance plans. About 20 homes had to be evacuated during heavy rains in January and at that time a building inspector found some homes were not to code.

A couple of Calif. lawmakers coming up with their own idea of how to replace the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare. It would be a single-payer health care system only for Californians, including illegal immigrants. They’re calling the universal health care plan, the Healthy California Act. Sens. Ricardo Lara of Bell Gardens and Toni Atkins of San Diego, both Democrats, have not revealed how it would work. Those against the idea say it will be major tax increases, but supporters say that’s not true, taxes would replace insurance premiums altogether and there would be savings because there would no longer be massive administrative costs from insurance companies.

A Calif. Assemblyman has introduced a bill to increase penalties for political candidates who lie on their election ballot statements. Assemblymember Jim Frazier’s bill to bring hefty penalties for those misrepresenting facts in their candidate statements. Some of the penalties include forfeiture of office and reimbursement of costs if there needs to be a special election. Frazier says he introduced the bill to make sure candidates who lie about their backgrounds and mislead the public are punished.

A flood warning’s been issued by the California Department of Water Resources for the Navarro River at Navarro affecting Mendocino County. The agency says another atmospheric river could cause water levels on the Navarro to rise above flood stage. The National Weather Service in Eureka issued the warning until tomorrow afternoon or until they cancel it. The river was at 12.2 feet around 3:15 this morning with minor flooding forecast. Flood stage is 23.0 feet.


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