Skip navigation

Monthly Archives: February 2017

A state of emergency put in place by the Lake County Sheriff who’s also the Acting Director of Emergency Services. Sheriff Brian Martin put the declaration in place yesterday because of flooding and storm damage. The Sheriff’s office says they’ve received reports in the last couple days of landslides, downed utility lines, fallen trees, and more. The local emergency declaration helps the county be able to get special services and supplies for disaster relief. It comes after Clear Lake went well above flood stage at 10.55 on the Rumsey. 9 feet Rumsey is considered flood level. 11 feet is severe flooding. The National Weather Service says we’ll get a break from the rain so the lake may recede some but more storms are lining up, with heavy rain expected again on Saturday.

Lakeport is looking for folks who want to be on the Measure Z Advisory Committee. The city needs five volunteers who will be on the committee for serve terms of up to four years. You have to be a citizen of Lakeport to be on the panel. The committee works closely with the city council and recommends projects they feel should be considered for Measure Z. The Measure uses money from a one percent sales and use tax for city improvements. They can also comment or recommend moves for the 2017-2018 budget which will then be given to the council for consideration. Those interested in serving on the committee have until March 16th to apply.

Pump trucks still working to get water out of over-taxed water systems in Lake County. The Lake County Special District reports most of the sewer systems in the county have way more water than usual which they’re having a hard time processing. There have been some sewer leaks reported in Northern Lakeport and Clearlake. The district warns to steer clear of flooded areas and leakage spots. They do say however that the lake water has somewhat diluted the sewage. They also say some of the manholes around low-lying areas of the county are completely under water and have been leaking lake water into sewer systems.

Flooded roads, sink holes, erosion and broken off asphalt across Northern Calif. In Mendocino County, Orr Springs Road has a huge chunk of road missing, something the County Transportation Director says they’re working on to get back together as soon as possible. He says the street is part of the Federal Highway System so the county can try to get federal money to help fix it. The cost could be in the $1.5 million range. The director says they may just pop a temporary bridge up until they can get the road properly patched up. He also says they’re working as fast as they can, but they’ve got to make sure the solution they come up with is safe and they have a lot of paperwork to process to get federal money.

The Economic Development and Financing Corporation in Mendocino County is considering ways to help fund the legal Cannabis industry. The Daily Journal reports the executive director of the EDFC John Kuhry says it’ll be like a state regulated crowd fund to help the legal industry startup. He says it could help the industry compete with the big dogs across the state when marijuana is available in retail stores. Those who open businesses will need startup funds so they can compete with others in the Central Valley and Central Coast. But they cannot use traditional lending sources, so Kuhry says it could be an outlet for them. He says the board discussed the topic last week and will continue to consider the investment model moving forward.

14,000 people had to leave their flooded homes in San Jose. The 101 was also closed in both directions near the town due to rising floodwaters yesterday. Police had to go door to door to get people out of their homes because creeks and reservoirs were over their banks. There was heavy rain pouring down on the region, which had chest deep water in some neighborhoods. The Fire Captain says they took more than 200 people to dry land and had them rinse off with soap and water so they don’t get sick as the water could also contain fuel, garbage and sewage.

No detectable mercury in water in Guerneville. Cal Water tested the town’s water after reports there were elevated levels of mercury from the old Jackson Mercury Mine flowing into the Russian River. The Press Democrat reports state water quality regulators worried heavy rain could have moved tailings from mining waste at the old mine into a creek that flows to the river off Sweetwater Springs Road. Cal Water tests for mercury every few years as part of state requirements, but for this last test, they took more samples because residents had voiced concern. Water quality testing for mercury has been normal since they started testing in the area in the year 2000.

Areas of the Mendocino National Forest have been closed down due to rain and fast moving winds. The Red Bluff Recreation Area and OHV trails are closed on the Upper Lake and Grindstone ranger districts. Forest staff says the public should be careful as there are unstable roads because of saturated soil, blocked roads from downed trees, plugged culverts, deep ruts and running water. The Acting Mendocino National Forest Supervisor says there could be hazards they haven’t found yet because some areas are unsafe for employees to enter. They say if you’re planning to visit the forest to call ahead. You can also visit the forest website for more info. (

A public meeting’s being held by the Lake County Water Resources Department regarding the urgency ordinances about boating on Clear Lake during the flood emergency. The meeting Sunday at 2p. The Water Resources department will talk about the status of the Lake, it’s level, dam discharges, and effects of the latest forecast. The meeting in the Board Chambers of the Lake County Courthouse, at 255 N. Forbes Street in Lakeport. There will also be a live stream on Facebook if you can’t make it, visit the Lake County Office of Emergency Services page for more.

The man who destroyed President Trump’s Hollywood Walk of Fame star has to pay to fix it, plus he got probation for vandalism. James Otis pleaded no contest and agreed to fork over more than $4,000 for the damage and lawyer fees. He will also do 20 days of community labor. Police say the man took a sledgehammer and pickax to the star a week before the presidential election in November. He said at the time he wanted to steal the star and sell it, then turn the proceeds over to 11 women who claim the president groped them.

A 10-year-old girl in Ohio gets her wish after messaging police on Facebook for help with math. Molly Draper says her daughter Lena sent the message to police in Marion because she was stuck on her equations and needed some help. An officer responded and apparently walked the girl thru some problem solving. Mom says he got one problem right, but made a mistake on another. Mom shared the whole story on Facebook saying it shows her daughter’s trust in police officers and good community relationship-building on their part.

Sheriff Brian Martin, Lake County’s Director of Emergency Services, has issued a declaration of a local emergency for this week’s storms which began February 18th. The purpose of declaring the local emergency is to make is easer to bring in help and supplies for disaster relief. It also paves the way for issuance of a State or Presidential declaration of emergency. And in announcing the declaration, Sheriff Martin also urges you to get ready for more heavy rain forecast to hit on Saturday.

Lakeport’s sewer collection system is nearing capacity and the City is asking you to conserve water usage. The City says the elevated level of Clear Lake is having a major impact as the high water levels have drastically increased intrusion into the system through clean-outs, manholes and cracked pipes. The inundation of lake water on top of the normal winter flows is making it difficult for the city’s lift station pumps to keep up. The City asks that you conserve as if it were a severe drought so less water goes into the collection system. That means shorter showers, less laundry, dishwashing and toilet flushing, and anything else that sends water down a drain.

A portion of Lakeshore Boulevard may be structurally unsafe. Police issued an alert this afternoon saying Lakeshore Blvd across from Jones Street appears to be undermined and are telling you to avoid the area. The City has closed Lakeshore Boulevard to all traffic from Giselman Street to the north City limit boundary.

With nearly 50,000 residents under either a mandatory or advisory evacuation order, the mayor of San Jose has acknowledged that residents were not properly notified to evacuate. Mayor Sam Liccardo held a news conference this afternoon. (SOT) Officials said they did not anticipate this level of flooding because their stream flow model showed the channel could handle the water without spilling over but that model turned out inaccurate for Coyote Creek when the water rose early this morning. Coyote Creek has reached a 100-year high this week.

A man from Ukiah goes to jail for a domestic violence incident. The Mendocino County sheriff’s office reports getting a call and find Raul Arriola Bojorques who they start talking to as a woman comes out of the bathroom beaten up. Police say the woman was his wife. She had a swollen lip and blood on her shirt, but told cops everything was fine. They asked her if her husband hit her, then arrested the guy on suspicion of domestic violence. He was held on $25,000 bond.

A woman from Albion hauled to jail for a domestic incident. Police say they got a call to Ukiah Street in Mendocino from the man of the house who said his ex-girlfriend, Justine Battersby, wouldn’t leave. He says she came over, they argued, then she kicked him and threatened him by text message on Facebook Messenger. The woman was arrested on suspicion of making criminal threats and misdemeanor domestic violence battery. She was held on $20,000 bond.

Residents in Healdsburg came up in big numbers to support undocumented immigrants. The Press Democrat reports standing room only at the City Council meeting where residents urged members to help protect immigrant workers. Neighbors reminding the council how central immigrants are to the wine, restaurant and hotel industry. There were about 20 speakers who were all favoring supporting workers the federal government’s been going after the last several weeks, putting fear into Healdsburg’s Latino community. The council unanimously supported a resolution to acknowledge and embrace the diversity and show the commitment to non-discrimination. The council also says they’ll work with nonprofits to help immigrants learn their rights and help them get legal representation if necessary.

Several Northern Calif. schools and municipalities are taking a position to support undocumented students and workers. The Press Democrat reports last week the Santa Rosa Junior College board declared the campus a “safe haven” and says it will protect personal records of students against federal immigration agents. The Sonoma City Council will affirm their commitment to diversity and the civil rights, safety and dignity of all residents. The Sonoma Board of Supervisors has also voted unanimously to support proposed California legislation so local officials don’t follow federal immigration enforcement. Staffers will also review county programs to make sure there are no obstacles for residents getting services. Plus there’s now a centralized information hub and there will be community workshops.

Caltrans says it has no idea when it will reopen Highway 37 in northern Marin County due to flooding. The highway is a major thoroughfare for folks in 4 counties in the North Bay. It’s been closed both ways between the 101 and Atherton Avenue since Feb. 9th. Caltrans says they’ve accomplished a lot but the rain has been so unpredictable, it’s hard to say when it will all be done. The highway was also closed for almost two weeks last month. Apparently it’s one of the lowest lying highways in the state, built across marshland. Caltrans says there’s been so much flooding that the water level couldn’t recede because storm drains were full and regurgitated water back out onto the highway. The work could cost upwards of 10 million dollars.

Abandoned vehicles are starting to be removed in Clearlake as the City Council approves a fee structure to pay for the work. The City Manager Greg Folsom will start to use fees from the Abandoned Vehicle Abatement program to take out the blight from the city. Right now they have about $5,000 set aside from the general fund for the work. The money comes from a one dollar car registration add on. Apparently it’s pretty expensive to remove one vehicle. But the county’s been holding on to some money for abatement too, and has about $300,000.

A new Assembly bill is aimed at helping businesses stay open when they get unexpected tax bills. Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry of Winters says new businesses can be overwhelmed and have unintended mistakes because the tax code can be confusing. She says many small businesses don’t have accountants so they have to figure things out on their own… so the Offer in Compromise Program helps entrepreneurs with their taxes. The Board of Equalization decides on cases where a business owner is unable to pay unexpected taxes in full. A bill already in place to support these cases ends next January, so the new bill would make the Offer in Compromise Program permanent.

Four neighborhoods in Lakeport are still evacuated because of flooding so the city council has ratified its emergency declaration. The city ordered the mandatory evacuations for three mobile home parks – Willopoint, Aqua Village and Lucky Four – and homes nearby on Esplanade Street. The Lakeport Police Chief Brad Rasmussen says the evacuations were for about 125 people in the four neighborhoods…

The chief says anyone caught in evacuated areas will be arrested. He says they want residents to be able to go home, but they have to consider safety first before they lift the evacuation orders. Library Park in Lakeport had major damage because of the failure of a seawall. The crank up docks on Third St. were also damaged and the clubhouse is surrounded by sandbags. Police are thinking of closing part of Lakeshore Boulevard after this morning’s school busses pass by.

A proposal for another Dollar General Store in Lake County being discussed. The Lake County Planning Commission is looking at a proposal for Clear Lake Riviera. They’re meeting tomorrow morning to consider the plan from a development company in Texas to add on to the area. They already have stores in Clearlake Oaks and Nice and are trying for Middletown and Lucerne. They were trying in Kelseyville, but the commission said no to that one. An appeal by the developer’s been upheld by the Board of Supervisors and the developer has a new location in mind.

More areas in Lake County have been evacuated because of rising flood waters. Residents in Clearlake Oaks, the Clear Lake Keys and surrounding areas ordered by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office to evacuate. The urgent update released yesterday for the residents just after the Big Valley Rancheria, Lands’ End, Corinthian Bay and Soda Bay were also evacuated. This because Clearlake is above flood stage and was expected to rise last night. The Sheriff’s office reminding residents to secure their belongings – including medications and important papers and pets and to leave early because some routes out are blocked by flood waters. There’s an emergency shelter at the Seventh-day Adventist Church, located at 1111 Park Way in Lakeport.

Little Lake Grange the scene of a community gathering to raise awareness for Standing Rock and the Oil pipeline. An event last Saturday called, Water is Life, A Benefit for Standing Rock, was a fundraiser in support of the Standing Rock Sioux who have been protesting the pipeline because it’s near religious relics and they say the oil pipeline could taint their drinking water if there’s a failure. The event organizers say the money they raised will go to help cleanup the camp in North Dakota and help sponsor local activism. The money to be distributed by “Mendo Stands with Standing Rock” and the Cloud Forest institute.

A solar energy company in Hopland is helping donate equipment to power a school in North Dakota for Pipeline protestors. Real Goods partnering with an activist from the Earth Island Institute to donate and install equipment for a solar and wind turbine generator for the camp near the town of Cannon Ball in the Standing Rock Reservation. The project could be put on indefinite hold though as protestors have been ordered to leave the camp.

A woman in Northern Calif. has died after driving on to a flooded rural road with signs not to enter, she drowned. The Undersheriff of the Glenn County Sheriff’s Office says witnesses saw the woman go on to the road near Orland and her car was completely submerged. Helicopters were above trying to scout out where the woman went, but divers found her body inside the car later. The woman has been identified as Nicole Dufour of Orland.

Goats are going to be busy in Southern Calif. as there’s high demand after the rains end to get the animals chomping on weeds. A couple of companies in Chino say they’ve been getting a ton of requests for work for their goats. One company, “Goat ‘Er Done” grazing service also has dogs that protect the goats as they chomp away. The goats eat weeds and help to prevent wildfires. One company says they’re getting five or six calls a week, as opposed to last year, when he got, maybe one call a week. The company says they’ll buy 100 more goats this winter.

The Lt. Governor of New Jersey says she got a letter of resignation — from her husband, an appeals court judge. Kim Guadagno’s hubby had to notify his wife, so he could get his pension. She’s also the secretary of state. Her husband will hit the mandatory retirement age of 70 this month. Michael Guadagno writes his term will end next January and that means his income will be “substantially reduced” which may mean it’s time for his wife to consider a career change to a more lucrative position, but that they could discuss it “over dinner”. Kim is running to succeed Republican Gov. Chris Christie.

Cal Trans says Highway 101 is closed about 6 miles North of Laytonville due to a slide. Cal Trans is working to clear the slide and the CHP has intermittently been allowing one-way traffic control to ease congestion.

The flood warning continues for the Navarro River At Navarro, which crested this morning at more than 24 feet. It fell below flood stage at around Noon when it was measured at 22.5 feet. The Mendocino County Roads Department has been monitoring several roads that are having either flooding, integrity or slide issue.

Highway 1 closed at the Garcia River for flooding. 

Highway 128 closed at Navarro
Highway for flooding. 

175 closed at Hopland for flooding.

Orr Springs Rd is closed 5 miles west of Ukiah where the road is crumbling.

Mountain View Road between Boonville and Point Arena has only one lane open at a slide at MP 18.50

The flood warning for Clear Lake will stay in effect through Thursday with the rain continuing through tomorrow keeping Clear Lake around the 11 feet Rumsey mark, well over it’s 9 foot official flood stage. Four areas along the lakeshore in Lakeport remain under a mandatory evacuation order.

An Albion woman’s been arrested for allegedly making criminal threats against her ex boyfriend. On Saturday the man called for help saying Justine Battersby was refusing to leave his home. When deputies got there he told them Battersby had been sending him threats through Facebook Messenger and text messages with one allegedly saying she was going to drive her car into his bedroom and another saying she would have someone come over and assault him.

An arrest has been made in a February 4th stabbing death in Clearlake. Police say James Laurence Mongi was taken into custody Monday in connection with the death of Richard Garner Jr. Police say Mongi stabbed Garner in the neck after a fight. He is charged with homicide and assault with a deadly weapon and has had bail set at just over a $1 million. He is set to be arraigned Friday.

Nonstop rain over the last couple of days had people evacuating, homes flooded, land and mudslides, a woman swept into the ocean and a vacation home sliding into the Russian River. A 19-year-old woman hit by a wave while on a rock at Schoolhouse Beach near Bodega Bay went to a hospital with serious injuries yesterday. Up to 5,000 Pacific Gas & Electric customers were without power west of Highway 101 with the most in the dark around the Forestville area. Roads were closed across several counties including Lake and Mendocino. Lakeport Police called for mandatory evacuations in four areas because of flooding and reports of a sinkhole in the Russian River takes a vacation home. The home listed on Air BnB as a pyramid shaped architectural delight.

A 4.2-earthquake near The Geysers reported by the USGS. The US Geological Survey reported the shaker near the geothermal steamfield yesterday afternoon. The epicenter about 2 miles northeast of The Geysers. The USGS reported getting 48 reports from 20 zip codes, including several in Lake County and in Sonoma and Napa counties and all the way out passed the Oregon border.

Hundreds of homes had to be evacuated in Northern Calif as the latest Atmospheric River hits. The ground already swollen from the wettest winter in years. Creeks and rivers were flooding over their banks as the storm started to weaken yesterday. The National Weather Service reported nearly 2 inches of rain in San Francisco, around 2 inches in the Central Valley and more than 7 inches above Big Sur. Scattered showers were still expected today. Flash flood warnings in areas where fires blackened the earth the last couple of summers. More than 100 homes in three mobile home parks in Lake County and nearby had to be evacuated as Clear Lake hit a foot above flood stage. Sheriff Brian Martin says as many as 2,000 people in Spring Valley were blocked in after mudslides blocked or washed out the two entrance roads. A temporary bridge should be put into place soon to reopen the area. Water flowed into the spillway at Lake Berryessa for the first time in a decade. The water level is falling though at the Oroville Dam where the emergency spillway eroded with a crater forming. 188,000 people were evacuated there a couple weekends ago.

The National Weather Service has an updated flood warning through Thursday in Lake County with that high wind warning ending this morning. Rain was still expected today and tomorrow with a potential break Thursday, but more rain on the way this weekend. Clear Lake was way over flood stage nearing 11 feet Rumsey. Early this morning the lake hit 10.24 feet Rumsey which is reported to be the highest the lake’s been in 19 years. Clear Lake hit 11.44 feet Rumsey in February 1998, that was the highest it was since February 1909, when it got to 13.38 feet Rumsey.

– The city of Lakeport has designated 707-263-5614 as a line for community members with questions.
– Red Cross’ temporary shelter for evacuees at the Seventh-day Adventist Church, located at 1111 Park Way in Lakeport, can be reached at 707-263-6002. Pets will be allowed at the shelter.
– Lake County Animal Care and Control has set up an information line for residents needing help and information related to animals and the evacuation at 707-245-5276.

A man in Clearlake’s been arrested for the stabbing death of another man. The Clearlake Police Dept. reports arresting James Mongi for stabbing Richard Garner Jr. to death February 4th. They say the two had a confrontation at a home where they found Garner stabbed in the neck. He was taken to a hospital and died there. It took police a few weeks to arrest Garner who they say became a person of interest after interviewing witnesses. Mongi’s booked into jail on homicide and assault with a deadly weapon charges with bail at $1,025,000.

Calif. topping the list of children living in poverty. That from the State Sen. Mike McGuire’s office who says they’re working to enroll more kids in school lunch programs for free or reduced prices. His office says they’ve enrolled more than 326,000 students for free lunches, a 30-percent increase from the year before and the most kids enrolled in Calif. in decades. Now McGuire’s moving a bill called the "Feed the Kids Act" to tackle childhood hunger by getting rid of some red tape. McGuire says it’s hard for kids to learn if they go to school hungry. He says SB 138 will improve the certification process to make sure all state school districts use Medi-Cal data so they can automatically enroll income-eligible students in free and reduced-price school meals. He says most districts currently don’t use the info.

The Flood Warning is still on for the Navarro River At Navarro in Mendocino County. The National Weather Service said showers and isolated thunderstorms were still possible today, but the precipitation will be light compared to yesterday. They warn though that rivers can still rise thru the afternoon so the flood warning is extended until 3:20 pm today. The river’s flood stage is 23.0, and the river hit 23.5 feet earlier this morning. It’s forecast to get near 26 FT this morning then fall below flood stage mid morning and recede all the way back down to 10 feet by Friday morning. Highway 128 is flooded from mile marker 0 – 11. And Hwy 175 in Hopland from mile marker 0 to .75 is also closed. They warn of course, not to drive your car over flooded roads as only 2 feet can float most vehicles.

Ukiah police say they had to call in a mental health care worker after a knife fight near Safeway. Police say they got a call to the grocery store on Valentine’s Day to the fight between two men in front of the store, one of them, holding a knife. Cops say they found one of the men was dealing with “mental health issues” so he was taken to a hospital where a mental health worker was called and the hospital took custody of the suspect.

A man from Ukiah has been arrested after police say he smashed a car window. The man, Hector Solis was found with a cut on his arm near Round Table Pizza on South State Street Feb. 9th. Officers detained Solis after finding out some items were also stolen from the car. He’s charged with suspicion of burglary, vandalism, being drunk in public and violating probation for another vandalism incident.

Medical Marijuana dispensaries are going to be allowed in Ukiah even though a local doctor tried to stop the move. The Ukiah City Council has taken the final yes vote for medical marijuana dispensaries to operate in city limits. The new rule starts March 20th. The Mayor asked for public comment earlier this month and local Dr. Robert Werra showed the council a petition he started to totally ban medical marijuana dispensaries in the city. He says he got 40 other docs to sign the petition, saying most of them practiced in Ukiah. He says he doesn’t think the medical pot shops are needed in the city, because there are plenty outside the city and people needing the medicine have managed to still get it the last 20 years. One other resident said they were also concerned about the idea. But still, the council voted unanimously to adopt the ordinance.

Water levels at the Lake Oroville dam meet the goal set by the California Department of Water Resources. The agency saying they wanted to lower water levels to about 850 feet by the next storm, which hit already and the engineers say they hit they’re target. The department’s Acting Director says they had taken the levels down to 50 feet under capacity yesterday, with the inflow at the dam about 53,000 cubic feet per second and the water moving over the damaged emergency spillway was at 60,000 cubic feet per second. The levels were expected to rise again with this storm, but the agency says it should only be about five feet more. So there’s still about 45 feet of space left to go before capacity.

Officials are watching the Navarro River at Navarro again with the National Weather Service issuing a flood watch from late tonight through Tuesday afternoon. At 2:15 pm today the Navarro was just shy of 15 feet but they say it could reach it’s 23 foot flood stage by early Tuesday morning and possibly crest near 24 feet before falling later Tuesday.

Clear Lake has stayed well over its 9 feet Rumsey flood stage over the weekend and through today. It was at 10 feet this morning and forecast to rise to 10.5 late Tuesday and fluctuate there through Wednesday. The USGS reports the Cache Creek Dam was also releasing at high volumes of about 4,300 feet per second.

New Long Valley Road in Spring Valley is closed for a couple of days while the Lake County Public Works Dept. builds a temporary bridge. The road has become increasingly unstable. Currently New Long Valley Road is the only way in and out of Spring Valley since other roads also have erosion and weather issues so residents were encouraged to evacuate or be prepared to stay put until Wednesday. Some Deputies and Northshore Firefighters have stayed there.

A Covelo woman’s been charged with Harboring a Wanted Fugitive after Mendocino Deputies learned a man they were looking for was staying at her house. Leonard Whipple, also known as Ed Davis, was found last Wednesday at the Ledger Lane home of Chayni Frazier. Whipple had a warrant out for violating his Post Release Community Supervision. The Sheriff’s Office got a tip he was at Frazier’s home and Deputies were able to surround it and arrest him without incident. The Sherriff’s Office says Round Valley Tribal Police had told Frazier earlier in the day of Whipple’s warrant and warned her she could be arrested for harboring but she still allowed him to stay. She’s been booked on $15,000 bail. Whipple was booked with no bail.

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.

Power lines are down on Lakeshore Blvd, just north of Park Way. Firefighters and utility crews are there but don’t know how it could take to fix.The Lake County Sheriff’s Office says it could be closed to traffic until at least midnight tonight.There is also reported flooding on Lakeshore Blvd in several different areas both within the city limits and in the county, north of Lakeport and Giselman Street is now closed at Lakeshore Blvd. Police say Library Park is taking on 3 to 4 foot waves, and there is absolutely no admittance into the park area.

A Lower Lake man has died after being hit by a car while he was walking along Highway 20 near Robinson Rancheria early this morning. The CHP has not released the victim’s name but said he was 35-years old. The driver, Matthew Hochleutner of Upper Lake told investigators he was heading eastbound on Highway 20 just after midnight and didn’t see the man walking in the eastbound lane until just before he hit him. The CHP says Hochleutner was evaluated at the scene and was not under the influence. It is not yet known if the pedestrian was.

A former Ukiah man’s pleaded guilty to his part in a 2015 murder just before he was set to go to on trial. The Mendocino County DA says Thursday Isidro Bernal withdrew his not guilty pleas and denials and pleaded guilty to murder in the death of a marijuana grower during a botched rip-off attempt outside Yorkville. As part of the deal Bernal was sentenced to 25 years to life.

The interim Ukiah Valley Fire Authority Chief is getting the thumbs up from the Ukiah City Council. The Daily Journal reports the city council heard from the city manager about the chief’s abilities and how he’ll be helpful in the potential merger of Ukiah Valley’s two distinct fire departments. The City Manager has appointed Kirk Thomsen who used to be the Division Chief for the City of Ukiah Fire Department and district. The new chief in place after the last one suddenly resigned last year. The new chief will not oversee the Hopland Fire Dept. as the last chief did. The mayor telling the city council he’s feeling more positive about the merger than he has before. The city council also approved managing the fire district’s finances and dismissing an administrative assistant in the district.

A group who wants to count how many steelhead and salmon there are in Mendocino County’s piece of the Russian River watershed are trying to get permission for access from some property owners. The Sonoma County Water Agency says a lot of the watershed’s on private property, so where they count will depend on where they get access. They’re hoping to do a random sampling. An environmentalist working with the agency says they hope property owners will want to be part of the effort. They’ve been looking south of Healdsburg, but have not moved north into Mendocino County yet, where they say they know there are definitely steelhead, but they’re unsure about Coho.

A state of the hospital presentation hosted by the League of Women Voters of the Mendocino Coast regarding Mendocino Coast District Hospital. The Hospital’s CEO and the Board President for the Mendocino Coast Healthcare District Board gave a presentation Tuesday at the Caspar Community Center regarding challenges the hospital’s been facing and how they can prop up crucial departments that are losing money such as the Emergency Room and Obstetrics. They also touched on finishing capital projects that were on hold because of the hospital’s recent bankruptcy and how to follow state requirements which mean they’ll have to replace much of the hospital by 2030.

A car crash on Highway 20 kills a pedestrian in front of the Robinson Rancheria Resort and Casino. Northshore Fire Protection District firefighters, the California Highway Patrol and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office were on the scene early this morning finding the pedestrian lying on the east side of the highway. Lake Co News reports at first emergency responders said a Toyota Tundra may have hit the victim. But details were sketchy.

The water in Clearlake is finally starting to come back down. Last week the lake was way over flood stage but as of last night, the United States Geological Survey’s gauge near Lakeport measured it at 9.55 feet Rumsey. Flood stage is 9 feet. The lake has been closed to motorized boats temporarily because of the level and possible boat wakes that could flood properties near the shore. More rain is on the way though, with the National Weather Service calling for rain all weekend long, possibly into Wednesday, but just totally about an inch altogether. Heavier rain is expected Sunday into Monday.

Library Park is still closed to the public due to flooding in Lakeport. City representatives say it’s closed for public safety and there’s no more damage. The city says some have been ignoring signs to stay out and have gone into flooded areas of the park, causing damage. They’ve got city workers at the park protecting the infrastructure, but are still encouraging the public to stay away. There’s now barrier-tape around the park between the signs. They’re also going to have police officers patrolling nearby and anyone found inside the park could be ticketed.

The outflow of water from Oroville Dam’s being reduced during the repairs of the emergency spillway which led to the evacuation of nearly 200,000 residents. The California Department of Water Resources says construction crews are on the dam working at the same time the water flow is being reduced. The reduction is helping crews so they can take out debris from the diversion pool under the spillway. They say that work will help them move toward re-starting the power plant. The level of the reservoir was down 36 feet so there would be more room for water from incoming storms. A couple of trails and launch ramps at the lake are closed to the public due to the damaged spillway.

Police in Lakeport looking to the public for help figuring out who broke into the Senior Center’s Meals on Wheels Thrift Shop storage warehouse. Cops say it happened overnight between Wednesday and early Thursday. Burglars got into the warehouse and stole a generator, air compressor, chop saw and a sump pump. They valued the stolen equipment at more than $1,000. Police asking anyone who may know anything about the crime to call the Lakeport police dept., send them a private Facebook message or send an text by using TIP LAKEPORT to 888777.

A group representing pot growers in Sonoma County is against the cannabis business tax to be voted on next month. Last week the Sonoma County Growers Alliance Board said they were neutral on the tax, but changed their position Monday to oppose it. There will be a special election March 7th on the tax, Measure A. The measure would mean a tax up to 10 percent of gross receipts for cannabis businesses that are not inside the county’s nine cities. The tax would be imposed on cultivators and manufacturers could bring in as much as $6.3 million a year. But if Measure A fails, the county say it will just table the business permit applications.

A man from Clearlake Oaks who didn’t re-register as a sex offender, has pleaded not guilty in court. Lawrence Jelks made bail and is currently not in jail. He was arrested after multiple tips from the public after a warrant was put out for his arrest for failing to register. He’s due back in court March 14th.

A man from Clearlake arrested on weapons charges after an accident gets a delay in court proceedings after his public defender says there’s a conflict of interest. Jesse Banda’s lawyer said there was a conflict and he couldn’t defend Banda and requested someone else take over for him who was not a public defender. Banda’s been charged with several crimes including Assault with Firearm, Robbery and being a Convict or a Person Prohibited to be in Possession of Ammunition. He pleaded not guilty to all charges. He’s arrested after a traffic accident where a pickup was found in Lower Lake and a man there with a gunshot wound. Cops found Banda crawling out of a truck that had rolled down an embankment with a gun nearby. They say they also found 19 pounds of processed marijuana in the truck. The court proceedings postponed so a new lawyer could be lined up for Banda.

An accolade for Lake County Department of Child Support Services. The state honored the local department for its efforts supporting families, getting the Director’s Excellence Silver award. The award goes to those who increase distributed child support payment collections, the percentages of current support due which gets paid, and for the percentage of cases paid in full each month. The Lake County division got their Silver recognition by having about a 3.65 percent increase across the award criteria.

If you plan to take some visitors to Lombard Street in San Francisco, be prepared, pretty soon, you may have to fork over some toll money. A proposal being floated by a city supervisor to bring in millions by asking the millions of yearly visitors to pay a toll to go down the famously crooked and winding street. Supervisor Mark Farrell brought up the idea after a report by the transportation authority which recommended the possible toll because of all of the cars that drive down the 600-foot street. Farrell lives in the district where he says people climb on roofs so they can get selfies, walk down the middle of the street and stand at the bottom and shoot selfies with the road behind them. Another plan would be to have travelers reserve their trip down the curvy road first and pay more if they don’t.

A rodent foils a burglary in Idaho. Joey the pet squirrel scratched the teenage suspect who police say tried breaking into a gun safe in Meridian. The teen told police the squirrel scared him, as he wasn’t expecting a squirrel to fly at him out of nowhere. But police say the kid still stole stuff, after the scratch attack, then took off. The squirrel’s owner says his pal Joey’s been living there about six months after being found in a flower pot when he was only about a week old. He says he’s like a cat and even uses a litter box. He also likes treats, chocolate Whoppers, which he got as a reward for his watchful eye.