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Bank of America has donated its building to Lakeport and the City Council has voted to accept it. The Lakeport branch was closed at the end of 2017 with only its ATM operational. The City Manager presented the donation to the council, saying she was excited about the donation which has been talked about for about a year. The building’s valued at nearly a half million dollars. And the city has to allow the ATM to stay. The bank’s lawyers reportedly have the documents for the donation and after they’re signed the building will be in escrow and close within a month or so.

A major storm is headed our way with an atmospheric river, so a ton of rain and snow, along with fast moving wind. There’s a high wind watch this afternoon into early tomorrow morning in Lake and Mendocino Counties as well as a Flood Watch for both as well. At the Lakeport City Council meeting last night the Public Works Director told councilmembers he sent an email to members and staff about severe weather concerns because there could be 7 inches of rain in 24 hours along with the fast winds. That of course to lead to downed trees and no power. There are reports we could see some thunderstorms this afternoon and evening over burn scars which could mean debris flows and heavy mountain snow above the 5,000 foot level.

Reports of debris in Clear Lake lead the Lake County Water Resources Department to announce a warning after stormwater runoff from recent rains. Trees and other floating debris plus now another storm’s coming. They warn there could be logs on the surface, and others submerged. So if you venture out, stay at a safe speed and keep a clear line of vision ahead, especially during dusk and dawn. They’ll patrol the lake and remove hazardous floating debris too.

A veteran school administrator’s been chosen as the interim school superintendent for Lakeport. After the ousting of April Leiferman last week, the board chose Patrick Iaccino, who used to be the superintendent of the Upper Lake Unified School District. He retired about a year and a half ago. The board meeting Monday went almost four hours including some closed sessions on the matter. Iaccino and another former county superintendent Judy Luchsinger were interviewed in open session. One board member quit after Leiferman was terminated. Lake Co News reports there was concern others might be expelled in the district, but the board said they had no intention of letting anyone else go and anything to the contrary was rumor.

Butte County is suing PG&E. The announcement only a couple days after the utility announced they were filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. 86 people died in the Camp fire and more than 14,000 homes were destroyed, including practically the entire town of Paradise. The lawsuit blaming the utility company for the fire November 8th which is being called the deadliest and most destructive in state history. Others are also suing PG&E for the Camp Fire, plus, the fires of October 2017 where 44 people died and thousands more homes were lost. Some of the fires have been linked to PG&E equipment.

A woman who was killed along with her 8 year old son by her boyfriend reportedly went thru years of abuse. Krissy Lynn Orbon’s family speaking out after her death, saying she dealt with years of verbal and physical abuse but she was too afraid to get help or leave him. The Press Democrat reports Michael Wilkins of Willits was suspected of murdering Orbon and their 8-year-old son, Damian before taking his own life. Police say Wilkins used a stolen rifle for the shootings, but there had never been any reports of domestic abuse before. The couple broke up about a month before their deaths. But Obon’s grandma says Wilkins assaulted her, even when she was pregnant, and threatened to kill her more than once.

State Sens. Bill Dodd and Mike McGuire working with the Governor and other lawmakers after the bankruptcy announcement by PG&E to protect fire survivors and ratepayers. A measure passed in the last session to help PG&E stay afloat and let the utility use ratepayers as a way to pay damages for the October 2017 fires, but that won’t apply to the Camp Fire or others in 2018. The utility did the same in 2001, due to $9 billion in debt and rising wholesale power costs. McGuire says he wants to see the utility come up with a plan to get out of the mess. He adds that lawmakers and Governor Newsome are working overtime to come up with some safeguards to ensure survivors who lost everything in the North Bay and Camp fires are protected. The governor announced Monday he is consulting with experts on bankruptcy and finance but also said they need to be patient.

An extension for those seeking new health insurance thru the state. Covered California says those interested in enrolling have three more days to finish up. The deadline was yesterday, but there was a surge of applications on Monday. So for those applying before midnight tonight, they have some breathing room. The Executive Director of Covered California says thousands waiting until the final day, and they’re there to help quote, "get across the finish line.” You can use an insurance agent, the Covered California website or call for help. If completed, care coverage would begin February 1st.

A warning about possible flooding ahead of the atmospheric river storm incoming today. Forecasters warn of soaking rain and a potential for flooding, with high winds and a blanket of snow in the Sierra Nevada of up to 4 feet. The National Weather Service warning of heavy rain and possible flooding this afternoon into tomorrow morning and gusty winds of up to 60 mph. We could see a half foot of rain in some areas and could be the strongest storm of the winter so far. From the Oregon border to San Diego, it’ll be wet. Forecasters say heavy rain could cause flooding on streets tonight and that small streams and creeks could run high and flood with rainfall rates at an 1 inch an hour. There are also blizzard conditions possible tomorrow in the Sierra Nevada at elevations of 7,000 feet and higher and 8 to 18 inches of snow expected below 7,000 feet with a possibility of as much as 30 inches.

The Ukiah City Council considers declaring a homeless shelter crisis. The declaration tonight at their meeting so the city can qualify for grants from the state for two projects. The Homeless Emergency Aid Program or HEAP grants from the state and Mendocino County is supposed to be getting as much as $5 million from it. The city council discussed the declaration at their meeting before Xmas vacation. It was announced then that Continuums of Care are eligible to apply for grants to use for homeless services, rental help and capital improvements. But there has to be a crisis declaration first. The two projects to use the funds would be finishing up the Redwood Community Services shelter and building another bathroom at the Project Sanctuary shelter.

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