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A big affordable housing project has been approved by the Fort Bragg Planning Commission. The commission unanimously approved permits for the project last week that will feature nearly 70 apartments on vacant land south of the Mendocino Coast District Hospital. The developer had been looking to put in 44 units then revised the application for 68 units instead. Plus they’re looking to put them up within two years. Twenty of the units are cottages of about 600 to 800 square feet. There will also be a big main building, a full-sized basketball court and a manager’s unit. Then about 25 units will be single-story affordable senior residential cottages, with another main building and the rest to be two-story workforce/family duplexes and a small basketball court and parking.

A vacant gas station in Fort Bragg that’s non conforming may be able to go back into business. The gas station and car repair shop on Main St. closed in 2017 and had been legal non-conforming use since about 2001. That zoning until the development code changed. But now the Planning Commission is deciding if the gas station can hold on to its non-conforming status and reopen or take the whole thing down for possible future development. There’s apparently interest in the space already, but for biofuels and alternative fuels. No word if there’s interest from the city.

After the Lake County Sheriff said there was a rise in crime and he needed to beef up his department, a town hall was called where county officials considered ways to pay for it, including possible tax measures for law enforcement. It’s after several burglaries and thefts in the Northshore region. Lake County Sheriff Brian Martin says the crime has leveled off for the time being. Possible tax measures could be voted on to help pay for more staffers in the agency. Sheriff Martin says he thinks an earmarked tax would get a good response instead of something like a general tax which has failed in the past.

There are more homeless people in Humboldt County. The Point in Time Survey found more than 1,470 people unsheltered in the County in their Jan. 23rd count of those experiencing homelessness. The survey showed the most were in Eureka, then Arcata-Manila, and the Garberville-Redway-Benbow area and McKinleyville. Several volunteers fanned out to help with the count that happens all across the country in January to meet the requirements of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The numbers help the state set aside money for counties to address homelessness and housing.

The Konocti Unified School Board has met to talk more about what they want to see in a new superintendent. The trustees got together Wednesday and jotted down the kinds of traits they want to see in the new superintendent as they start recruitment after Superintendent Donna Becnel announced her retirement. The five-member board had a meeting with the consultants helping with recruitment before the workshop. The consultants will have meetings with district staff and community members to aide in the search. They’re also setting deadlines for advertising the job announcement with interviews starting as soon as April. Becnel is leaving at the end of this school year in June.

One person is dead after a crash east of Clearlake Oaks. The crash yesterday morning on Highway 20, west of Walker Ridge Road. The California Highway Patrol reports a white van in a ditch, they’re investigating to see if there was another car involved. One man alone in the white van died, his name has not been released.

The man accused of setting the Clayton fire and several others is finally getting a hearing. Damin Pashilk is charged with more than 20 crimes including arson for the 2016 fire and others over a year’s time between July of 2015 and August of 2016. Some Cal Fire employees took the stand yesterday. They testified they had been surveilling Pashilk and while watching him one fire started near Middletown. He’s accused of setting multiple fires all over the county, they collected evidence and turned it over to investigators. Testimony in the case continues today.

Lake County’s getting ahead of mosquito season, with aerial spraying. Lake County Vector Control District treating marshlands across from the lake between Clear Lake State Park and Lakeport, parts of Anderson Marsh State Park, a small area east of the Keys, and a small area near Bridge Arbor South in North Lakeport. They’ll conduct spraying in daytime hours starting next Wednesday, continuing thru Friday, depending on lake level and the weather. They say they’re doing it now because their winter mosquito surveillance program found a lot of mosquito larvae in the marshlands after flooding and the lake rising due to heavy rain.

The name of another person who died in the Camp Fire has been released. The Butte County Sheriff’s Office says 93 year old Dorothy Lee-Herrera of Paradise was positively id’d. There are still 85 people who died, the number didn’t change. 74 of them have been positively identified so far. There are still two people unaccounted for.

State lawmakers are deciding if they should put video cameras in school buses and child care cars or vans. It’s to cut down on bullying on school buses and to keep tabs on drivers who don’t stop for school buses. The bill would require all school buses, school pupil activity buses, youth buses, and child care cars to have internal video systems. Assemblyman Mike Gipson’s bill after similar laws in several states to get a handle on bullying and vandalism. The bill introduced yesterday also requires school buses to get stop signal arms with an external video systems too to record drivers who don’t stop when a school bus is stopped.

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