Skip navigation

Monthly Archives: July 2017

The Ukiah Valley Sanitation District board of directors says they want to move beyond the legal situation with the city and open lines of communication. The Daily Journal reports director Kenneth Marshall said he thinks they can have a new start. But the two sides still have some issues to work thru including capital improvements and upgrades to the Wastewater Treatment Plant. The city’s director of water and sewer utilities says he was emailing the board about expenditures and going to meetings to get approval for nearly $3 million in work. The city manager had also been discussing the problems with the district with the city council in open meetings. The newspaper reports the city manager was becoming more concerned and frustrated with the lack of communication with the district.

Two people from Ukiah have been killed in a crash on Highway 20 near Redwood Valley. The California Highway Patrol reports the accident last Friday morning after a 70-year-old woman in a red, 2015 Nissan Altima going south merged onto Hwy. 20 into the path of a white Nissan pickup headed east. Officers say the pickup driver, a man from Lakeport, tried to avoid the crash, but he hit the Altima and the Altima lost control and got hit by a semi-truck with a trailer. It was hit again then went down an embankment and the passenger, an elderly man from Ukiah died. The driver of the Altima had to be removed by multiple firefighters with the Jaws of Life. She was airlifted to a hospital but died. The pickup driver had moderate injuries.

The Board of Supervisors take up algae blooms at their next meeting. There’s an update tomorrow morning at the regular meeting on this year’s cyanobacteria blooms in Lake County waters. The item says the board will get a multi agency perspective on blooms. The board is also honoring a couple of local Firefighters, who recently retired as the Lake and Mendocino County director and advisor for forests and wildland ecology for the local University of California Cooperative Extension. The board is also considering an agreement with the Yolo County Flood Control and Water Conservation District for a power purchase agreement.

A special meeting’s set by the Lakeport City Council to talk about a traffic mitigation plan and upgrades for the Carnegie Library. The Traffic Mitigation Plan is for 20th St. which will include re-striping part of the street. The city also wants to upgrade the Carnegie Library so it can be reopened to the public. Plus the council is also having a closed door session regarding the labor negotiations with the Lakeport Employee Association and the Unrepresented Employee Group. The meeting this afternoon to also approve spending $500 a month for an executive manager who will have the Assistant City Manager title. The meeting starts at 5:15 at City Hall.

It’s not a presidential election, but there will be more than a dozen seats for boards of directors for more than a dozen local fire, water and community districts to be on the ballot in November. The Lake County Registrar of Voters Office reports the general district election will be Nov. 7th for several offices of director seats which will all be vacant the first Friday in December or until they find a successor who’s elected and qualifies for office. The filing period ends is over Friday, Aug. 11th at 5 p.m.

A firefight over the weekend near Upper Lake for two fires. State, local and federal fire fighters on the two small fires named the Bear and the Lake fires Saturday. The Bear Fire started in the morning and the Lake, in the afternoon. The Bear Fire was near Bear Creek Road north of Upper Lake in the Mendocino National Forest. The fire burned about 3 acres. The Lake Fire was in the 6800 block of W. Highway 20, but so far there’s no public report by Cal Fire on the size of that fire but it didn’t burn for that long.

Fire victims looking for something to do with the kids… Middletown Community United Methodist Church has their “Camp Noah” coming up for 1st through sixth graders. Camp is from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. from July 31 to Aug. 4th, and it’s free. The church is partnering with Lutheran Social Services of Minnesota and various local agencies for kids who survived the Clayton and Valley fires. The camp is to help kids who may have been traumatized by the life changing events. They will help children process disaster and/or trauma related experiences and teach them to build resiliency skills. There will be breakfast, lunch, and snacks, and there’s transportation available for those who need it. For more info, visit www.campnoah.org.

Construction work and road repairs have begun across Calif. The California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA) and the Department of Transportation is moving the projects thru quickly after the legislature passed the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017 which Governor Brown signed. So this means construction starts this summer on more than a dozen pavement projects across Calif and there will be expedited design work for 50 more projects that start construction this fiscal year. Caltrans is working fast on more than $285 million worth of road repairs across the state to include repairing and resurfacing hundreds of miles of highways and improve lane-line visibility. There will be new striping they say is highly reflective with durable beads. In Mendocino County, there will be $3 million spent to resurface four miles of State Route 162 near Covelo.

A nod of approval for Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed $16 billion water tunnels by the Department of Water Resources. Brown trying to overhaul California’s water system with two 35-mile tunnels, each about four-stories tall. They will move to the Sacramento River and will supplement aging pumps to the south. Those who support the project say there would be a more reliable water supply for cities and farms along the San Francisco Bay as well as Central and Southern California. Those against including conservationists and some Northern California water agencies say it would wreck the West Coast’s largest estuary and native species, already struggling, who need that water.

A kitten with a silly name gets lucky. The 2 month old somehow gets onto a delivery truck that travels the Burlingame area. The kitty got onto the Peninsula Humane Society animal shelter’s delivery truck. They say while unloading deliveries they saw the tiny, light colored kitty darting back and forth amongst pallets. They say it took about 20 minutes to finally capture the kitten. The driver says they had no idea how the kitten climbed aboard. They say it was probably only there one day. The staff at the Humane Society named it Pallet because it was stuck behind one when they finally nabbed him. He was adopted right away and his new owner changed it to Buttons.

A woman in Philadelphia in trouble with the law after police say she stole a taxi and picked up a fare. Cops say the 65 year old caught a cab last Thursday night and asked to go to a casino, but on the way asked to stop at a gas station, where she hopped in the driver’s seat and took off. Police say they stopped the woman about a half hour later where they found her with another woman and an infant in the backseat. The mother says she hailed a cab, not knowing it was stolen.

Advertisements

An Elk Grove man missing for two weeks has been found dead in his car in Mendocino County. The Sheriff’s Office says his body was found Tuesday along Hwy 128 in Boonville by a passerby from Fort Bragg who thought the car looked odd where it was. A Sheriff’s Office spokesman tells the Press Democrat an autopsy did not determine the cause of death so they are awaiting toxicology results but says so far it’s not considered suspicious. He says there were no visible injuries or signs of violence and no drugs or alcohol in the car.

Business licensing for the City of Ukiah could be coming back under the City’s wing. In 2013, the then-City Council voted unanimously to hire the company Muniservices to administer business licenses, which moved the process completely online and out of the county, with no one to talk to locally if there were problems. The Ukiah Daily Journal reports at the Council Meeting this week, City staff said they’d been researching options for bringing it back in-house and identified a software program that would still have it all done online but more user-friendly and with some local oversight. The City would need to give Muniservices 90-days notice before ending their contract, but staff says they think they could make the move within a few months.

A harmful algal bloom has been found in Copsey Creek in Lower Lake. The Lake County Water Resources Department and Environmental Health Department say water testing of a sample from Copsey Creek near Quarterhorse Lane has detected levels of a cyanotoxin considered unsafe for recreation. Cyanotoxins are naturally occurring but when they multiply excessively they are unsafe to swallow so people are urged to avoid contact with the water there until after the bloom subsides and don’t let your pets into it either. A sample taken from downstream water where Copsey Creek enters Cache Creek did not detect the toxin. For more information on how the blooms come and go, you can check out the California Harmful Algal Blooms Portal: http://www.mywaterquality.ca.gov/habs/

A Kelseyville man shot in a home invasion robbery Wednesday was killed right in front of his kids. Lake County Major Crimes Detectives are continuing the investigation into the Wednesday morning homicide on State Street in Kelseyville. David Shalett was shot and killed during an apparent robbery in which one of the suspects shot Shalett and stole a small amount of marijuana. The Sheriff says Shalett’s two young children witnessed it. Investigators are asking anyone who has surveillance video covering the Gaddy Lane or State Street areas to contact Sergeant John Gregore at the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.

No more target shooting on local BLM lands for the time being due to the fire danger. The Bureau of Land Management has initiated emergency target shooting restrictions on public lands managed by the Ukiah Field Office in Mendocino, Sonoma, Napa, Yolo, Colusa, Glenn and Solano counties until fire danger subsides. The announcement follows Cal Fire’s report that the 20-acre Range fire on Cow Mountain this week was caused by target shooting at a rifle range. BLM says you can still shoot while hunting. Earlier this month BLM issued other seasonal fire restrictions regarding campfires, cooking and smoking.

Fort Bragg residents can learn more about the cleanup of the Georgia Pacific millpond at an open house and meeting next week. It’s two events on one day hosted by the California Department of Toxic Substances Control at Town Hall on Tuesday, July 25. Staff will run the open house from 2pm to 5pm and then at 630pm present a feasibility study for cleaning up the millpond. The DTSC is responsible for overseeing Georgia Pacific’s cleanup of the 415-acre mill site. If you want to review documents related to the cleanup before the meeting, you can see them at the Fort Bragg Library and the Fort Bragg City Hall Planning Counter.

There’s another spot up for re-election on the Konocti County Water District Board of Directors. The Lake County Registrar of Voters says at their June 30th meeting the Konocti District Board accepted the resignation of a member whose term does not expire until December 2019 creating a vacant 2-year unexpired term that will have to be voted on November 7. There was already a position open so that means two positions now open for candidates. If you’d like to file you can get an Official Declaration of Candidacy form at the Lake County Registrar of Voters office. The deadline to file is August 11th.

A massive wild fire near Yosemite National Park is still only 10 percent contained. Cal Fire says nearly 100 structures have been destroyed including 50 homes and as firefighters try to protect Mariposa County’s historic small mining towns. The fire has burned more than 70,000 acres and forced around 4,000 residents to evacuate. So far no one has been hurt.

Lake County Sheriff Major Crimes Detectives are continuing the investigation into a Wednesday morning homicide at a home on State Street in Kelseyville. David Shalett was shot and killed during an apparent home invasion robbery in which one of the suspects shot Shalett and stole a small amount of marijuana. The Sheriff says Shalett’s two young children were there and witnessed their father being shot. Investigators are asking anyone who has surveillance video covering the Gaddy Lane or State Street areas to contact Sergeant John Gregore at the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. 707-262-4238 or john.gregore.

A man wanted for a sexual assault in Clearlake has turned himself in. Police allege Michael Lamar found the victim sleeping in her car on Lakeshore Drive on April 19th and assaulted her, then forced her into the trunk of her car and drove to a remote area where he assaulted her again and took her car, leaving her on the side of the road. A passerby took her to a hospital. The Press Democrat reports used DNA to link the case to Lamar, a registered sex offender.

A Clearlake man has been convicted in a September 2013 shooting that killed one man and injured two other people. Joshua Beavers was found guilty Wednesday of second-degree murder for the death of David Ferrell and attempted murder for shooting Paul Cressy and Rachel Patterson. Lake County News reports the jury found the shootings premeditated which could translate into a life sentence. Beavers is scheduled to be sentenced in September.

Only minor injuries are reported from a Tuesday accident involving a Lake Transit bus on Highway 29 in Kelseyville. The CHP says the bus driver could not stop in time behind a car making a left turn. He served to avoid rear-ending that car, going into the opposite lane in front of another car, and ended up hitting both. Two bus passengers and one car driver were hurt.

Firefighters expect full containment on the Grade Fire northwest of Redwood Valley by Saturday. The fire that burned 900 acres was started Sunday by a vehicle fire that touched of a grass fire. It is now 95 percent contained with about 100 personnel still on scene.

A Clearlake man has been convicted in a September 2013 shooting that killed one man and injured two other people. Joshua Beavers was found guilty Wednesday of second-degree murder for the death of David Ferrell and attempted murder for shooting Paul Cressy and Rachel Patterson. Lake County News reports the jury found the shootings premeditated which could translate into a life sentence. Beavers is scheduled to be sentenced in September.

The search continues for an intruder who shot and killed a Kelseyville man at his home Wednesday morning. It happened around 3:30am in the 5000 block of State Street. The suspect is described as a man about 5’6 to 5’7, wearing a dark hooded sweat shirt. Detectives were able to grab some surveillance photos of two possible persons of interest, which you can see on the Lake County Sheriff Facebook page. But they are also asking anyone who has surveillance video near Gaddy Lane and State Street to call Detective Shamus Stafford.

Only minor injuries are reported from a Tuesday accident involving a Lake Transit bus on Highway 29 in Kelseyville. The CHP says the bus driver, who is from Clearlake Oaks, could not stop in time as he got into stopped traffic caused by a car making a left turn; he served to avoid rear-ending the turning car, going onto the opposite lane in front of another car, and ended up hitting both. Two bus passengers and one of the car drivers were taken to Sutter Lakeside Hospital for minor injuries.

Clearlake Police are asking your help in finding a rape suspect. 25-year-old Michael Lamar is a convicted sex offender and has been named the suspect in a sexual assault that happened at the Best Western El Grande Inn back in April. Lamar has no known address. He is described as black, 5 feet 7 inches tall and 160 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. Clearlake Police say they will release a photo of him later today.

Firefighters expect full containment on the Grade Fire northwest of Redwood Valley by Saturday. The fire has burned 900 acres and is 95 percent contained. It was started Sunday by a vehicle fire that touched of a grass fire. Cal Fire still has about 100 personnel on the fire.

The Range Fire on Cow Mountain in Ukiah should be fully contained by today (Thursday). Firefighters have kept the fire, which started Tuesday afternoon, to 20 acres. Cal Fire says it was touched off by target shooting at the rifle range there. They remind you that given all the tall grasses and new growth from the rainy winter and spring there is a lot of fuel around for fires. They ask shooters to place targets on dirt or gravel and use paper or clay targets since steel and rock can throw sparks. They say steel core and copper bullets are more likely to start fires so they recommend lead core. They ask that you avoid shooting on hot, windy days, and that you always bring along a shovel and fire extinguisher.

The Detwiler Fire west of Yosemite National Park has consumed more than 70,000 acres and is still only 10% contained. About 5000 people have been evacuated including the entire town of Mariposa. So far at least 29 structures have been destroyed and about 1500 are threatened.

Police have captured a Covelo man wanted for allegedly shooting at two men at his mother’s home earlier this month. The Daily Journal reports Weston Riley booked into the county jail Sunday. The victims say Riley came to the house around 2am July 11 while his mother was out of town and demanded a car he said was his. A woman watching the house refused but called two male friends for backup. When those men arrived Riley allegedly shot at them with a small handgun then got a rifle from a nearby shed and fired that at them and then ran. No one was hurt. Riley was arrested by Mendocino County Deputies Sunday and booked on suspicion of assault with a firearm and revoked probation. He was being held with no bond.

An intruder has murdered a Kelseyville man at his home and police are on the hunt for the suspect. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office says around 3:30am this morning deputies were called to a home in the 5000 block of State Street for a report that an intruder had shot someone. Deputies found one man dead. The suspect is described as a man about 5’6 to 5’7, wearing a dark hooded sweat shirt. He was last seen running south away from the home. Detectives were able to grab some surveillance photos of two possible persons of interest, which you can see on the Lake County Sheriff Facebook page. But they are also asking anyone who has surveillance video in the area of Gaddy Lane and State Street to contact Detective Shamus Stafford.

Firefighters expect full containment on two local fires within the next couple of days. Cal Fire in Mendocino County reports the Grade Fire northwest of Redwood Valley has held steady at 900-acres and is about 90 percent contained with full containment expected Saturday. The Range Fire in the Cow Mountain area east of Ukiah has burned about 20 acres and is also nearly 90% contained with full containment projected for tomorrow.

A wildfire west of Yosemite National Park has consumed more than 44,000 acres and is threatening more than 1500 homes and other buildings, forcing about 4000 people to evacuate. Cal Fire says the Detwiler Fire that started Sunday doubled in size last night from about 40 square miles to more than 70. Cal Fire says the rainy and snowy winter and spring have provided dense vegetation for the fire to feed on, and in steep, hard-to-access terrain.

So far, so good for two Kelseyville High School wrestlers competing at the Women’s Freestyle Cadet Nationals at the U.S. Marine Corps Junior and Cadet Nationals in Fargo, North Dakota. Jasmin Clarke and Alex Garcia are in Fargo with Kelseyville High School wrestling Coach Orlando Zarate to compete at Nationals. On Tuesday Clarke won the tournament in her weight class. Garcia was competing in her weight class today.

An intruder has murdered a Kelseyville man at his home and police are looking for the suspect. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office says around 3:30am this morning deputies were called to a home in the 5000 block of State Street in Kelseyville for a report that an intruder had shot someone who lives there. Deputies found one man dead. Major Crime detectives have been on seen throughout the day. The suspect is described as a man about 5’6 to 5’7, wearing a dark hooded sweat shirt. He was last seen running south away from the home. Detectives were able to gather two photos of possible persons of interest, which you can see on the Lake County Sheriff Facebook Page, which is posted from their Nixle Alert. If you have any information that will help you are asked to contact them.

Decent weather is helping firefighters gain containment on several local fires. Cal Fire in Mendocino County reports the Grade Fire northwest of Redwood Valley has held steady at 900-acres and about 90 percent containment with full containment expected by Saturday. The nearby Range Fire in the Cow Mountain area east of Ukiah has burned about 20 acres and is also nearly 90% contained with full containment projected for tomorrow.

Two fires very near each other in the hills between Ukiah and Willits look to be under control. Cal Fire in Mendocino County reports the Grade Fire has held steady at 900-acres. The fire burning northwest of Redwood Valley has stopped forward movement at about 85 percent containment with full containment expected by the end of the week. There had been evacuations over last weekend, and advisories, but they’ve all been lifted. The fire started by a vehicle and spread to brush Sunday along Highway 101 on the Ridgewood Grade. The nearby, Range Fire, started Monday in the Cow Mountain area east of Ukiah has burned about 20 acres and is nearly 85% contained. Cal Fire has reported to the board of supervisors there was no forward movement on that fire either. There were no fire related injuries or damage from either fire. Cal Fire reported good weather conditions helping them with the fires. One firefighter on the Grade Fire had to go to the hospital for a medical condition but was quickly back on full duty.

And the Murphy Fire in Lake County is 90% contained and burned 40 acres 3 miles south of Lower Lake.

A bill for telecom companies to get full use of public property had some opponents from Northern Calif. The First District Humboldt County Supervisor went to the state Capitol to fight Senate Bill 649 which would allow tiny wireless antennas to go up all over the state. This bill would take away any red tape and telecom companies would get a major break on fees to cities and counties. The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors — and 15 other counties — all signed on to a letter against the bill and the Calif. League of Cities reports almost 150 cities have also voiced opposition. But the bill passed the Assembly Communications and Conveyance Committee which includes North Coast Assemblyman Jim Wood. The bill moves on to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

A measure to pay for a mental health facility in Mendocino County makes it onto the November ballot. A group including county social service employees and the Mendocino County Sheriff are going at it again. This time they’re adding a citizen oversight committee who would be charged with reviewing the annual audit of the tax fund to pay for it. Sherriff Tom Allman says if they don’t do it right, it won’t get done. If the measure passes, 75% of what’s brought in from tax revenue would go into a Mental Health Treatment Fund which can pay for facilities, and the other 25 percent would be earmarked for services and treatment. Then after five years, the money would all go to services and treatment.

Suspicious fires in the Ukiah Valley fire officials were investigating have stopped or slowed way down. This according to the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority Chief. They’ve been tracking multiple fires officials say were intentionally set since May, but the chief says they’ve slowed way down or maybe it’s over. The chief told the city council earlier this month they were actively working with police to try to find a possible arsonist on the railroad tracks. They’re not done investigating though. There were more than 2 dozen fires since the first of May, some close to the 101, but the majority of them were near the railroad tracks between Brush and Gobbi Street.

Governor Brown’s set to sign a package of bills to extend the state’s cap-and-trade program through 2030. The cap-and-trade system encourages industry to clean up its act by putting a price on carbon emissions. But environmental groups say Big Oil got too many concessions. Amy Vanderwarker with the California Environmental Justice Alliance says the governor should have started with a bolder vision to move away from oil and gas – and then negotiate, rather than meeting behind closed doors with big companies from the start.

Cut 28345 :15 "There has to be a transition off of fossil fuels, and there has to be a transition to regenerative economies that actually put people and the planet first, instead of profits for our largest corporations in the world – who are the very drivers of the issue we are trying to solve."

Tag: Vanderwarker says Assembly Bill 398 will prevent local air-quality management districts from further regulating carbon emissions from stationary sources, like heavy industry and power plants. Governor Brown is defending the package, saying it’s the best he could do and still achieve the main goal of extending the program, which had to pass by a two-thirds margin and have bipartisan support.

Second Cut: Alvaro Sanchez from the Greenlining Institute says the devil will be in the details, He urges regulators to prioritize the needs of low-income communities that stand to bear the brunt of climate impacts first – and worst.

Cut 29345 :09 "We need to make sure that the revenues generated by cap-and-trade are directed at much higher levels to the communities that are burdened the most, so that they can benefit the greatest."

Tag: A companion bill from the Republican caucus also passed. It places a measure on the June 2018 ballot asking voters to make any major expenditures from the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund subject to a two-thirds vote of the Legislature, starting in 2024.

The Ukiah City Council once again considering granny units. The council looking at possible changes to the ordinance for Accessory Dwelling Units the Ukiah Planning Commission has recommended. The Planning Manager tells the planning commission there are new state laws regulating design and construction which also include parking requirements and footage away from primary residences, known as setbacks. Some of the recommended changes so far are changing all references to the granny units as “second units” to instead call them “Accessory Dwelling Units”, no parking requirements in certain situations, reduction of the setback requirements, also in certain situations, getting rid of sprinkler requirements in certain situations and a new look at Water and Sewer Utility Connection Fees. The meeting tonight at 6 at City Hall.

Free dental exams for Veterans in Lake County. The Clearlake VA Clinic working with Access Smiles June 29th and 30th since veterans aren’t covered with their basic medical package for dental care. The Clearlake VA tells Lake Co News oral health is associated with physical, mental and emotional health too.
Access Smiles had the Access Dental van in the area from Sacramento. Inside there are two full service dental chairs. One dentist along with staff were there caring for vets and they each got goodie bags, including a new toothbrush, toothpaste, floss and mouthwash, plus oral health educational materials.
They’re at it again for veterans compliments of Lake and Mendocino Stand Down at the Lake County Fairgrounds Sept. 27th to 28th.

Lake County at it again… about to reconsider the General Plan. The Board of Supervisors considering areas that can be revised. Lake Co News reports the county’s Community Development Director brought some potential revisions to the board for the new General Plan. He tells the council there are more than 60 goals they’re trying to get done and more than 500 policies and more than 200 implementation strategies. The plan in place now developed by 23 county agencies. The Community Development Director says he went to all of the agencies to see if they use the current General Plan for guidelines but only got two responses.

Lake County working to collect funds for debris removal after the Valley Fire. Some survivors of the 2015 late summer fire had authorized the County or its designee to take out structural and tree debris that was considered a health and safety hazard. Cal Recycle cleaned most of the 1,700 properties, but the property owners had promised they would pay whatever they got from their insurance companies. The county had a meeting Monday to follow up with Valley Fire Survivors in the Middletown, Anderson Springs, and Cobb areas and gave out information. Those who couldn’t be there will get their packet in the mail. There’s another info session, a week from Monday, July 31st at Cobb Elementary at 6 pm.

Fremont tops the list of the least stressed cities in the country. It’s 150 on a list of 150 by WalletHub. No other regional cities made the list except Santa Rosa which was way down there too, at 134 and San Jose at 138. Analysts on the personal-finance website took the 150 largest cities across 30 key metrics, which include weekly work hours and debt load to divorce and suicide rates. Divorce in Fremont, super low, only 11.8 percent, Cleveland was the highest with a divorce rate of 41.5 percent. Fremont was also the highest for credit scores and had the second-lowest poverty rate.

A woman in North Carolina is arrested after police say she made her kid steal more than $1,400 worth of clothing at the Rock Hill Galleria mall. Police say Kimberly Lynch helped her daughter take items from stores including Belk, JCPenney and Walmart before being busted last Friday, July 14th, exactly 4 years to the day when she was busted for shoplifting before. Police say they got a call to one of the stores for two shoplifters in custody. A store staffer says the two had stuffed a backpack full of clothing worth as much as $500 from Belk, but they also had nearly $1,000 worth of items from Walmart and JCPenney in their car. They also had a 3-month-old baby with them.

Some good progress today on several area fires, including a new one that started this afternoon. The largest one, the Grade Fire, which stared Sunday near Redwood Valley, is 65% contained. All evacuations have been lifted the fire’s been holding at 900 acres burned and no structures damaged. There are still more than 400 firefighters on it. Cal Fire’s Investigative Office has officially deemed the cause a vehicle fire that spread into the vegetation but the cause of the vehicle fire is still under investigation. The Range Fire, which started Monday afternoon on Cow Mountain, has burned 28 acres and is 45% contained. The Murphy Fire near Lower Lake has burned 40 acres and is 75% contained with no forward movement today. And the Comminsky Fire, which popped up today near Hopland, is already contained. Hopland Fire and Cloverdale Fire responded with an initial report of 1.5 acres of grass on fire with slow rate of spread.

A series of suspicious fires around Ukiah seems to have stopped, at least for the time being. Ukiah Valley Fire Authority Chief Kirk Thomsen told the Daily Journal while the UVFA and Ukiah Police are still investigating about 15 fires believed intentionally set along or near railroad tracks and Hwy 101 in May and June, whoever was setting them has slowed down or maybe even stopped. The chief says they were hoping to catch up with the person, or people, before it gets really dry and hot.

Balancing the need for housing versus crowding-up neighborhoods could be at the center of the Ukiah City Council meeting Wednesday as they consider changes to the city’s Accessory Dwelling Units ordinance. The Ukiah Planning Commission has made some recommendations on the ordinance after three new state laws were adopted that make it easier to build a second unit but also affect how the city regulates them. The Daily Journal reports one potential change includes the city not requiring off-street parking if the second unit is within half a mile of a bus stop. It also changes the setback distance which some residents reportedly fear would add to neighborhood noise and light. The meeting is Wednesday at 6 p.m. in the Ukiah City Council chambers.

The Grade Fire near Redwood Valley is now 65% contained. All evacuations have been lifted for the fire, which started Sunday and is now holding steady at 900 acres burned but no structures damaged. There was one reported injury yesterday – Cal Fire says a firefighter had a medical condition during the incident and taken to a hospital and evaluated but was released immediately and was back on full duty.

The Range Fire, which started around this time Monday on Cow Mountain, is holding at 28 acres burned with 45% containment. Cal Fire says they now have a line around the entire fire.

The Murphy Fire reported near Lower Lake has charred 40 acres and is 75% contained. Cal Fire says there are no evacuations and as of this morning there was no forward movement.