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Monthly Archives: June 2019

Cannabis growing could be allowed in the city limits of Fort Bragg after the City Council seemed to lean in on the idea. After a presentation from the owners of an approved manufacturing facility talked to the council of an even bigger cannabis growing and manufacturing complex. The Advocate reports the council voted unanimously for the city’s Planning Commission to draft language to include in a cannabis retail ordinance they are supposed to consider July 10th at a Town Hall. The move after the owners of the manufacturing complex, in its first phase, talk about their proposed complex on Airport Blvd to include growing, testing and packaging facilities as well as 10 units of worker housing.

The takeover of the Potter Valley Project looks to be moving forward after several agencies partnered to takeover the hydroelectric dam. A partnership of California Trout (CalTrout), Mendocino Inland Water and Power Commission, Sonoma County Water Agency (SonomaWater) and the County of Humboldt are filing a joint Notice of Intent saying they will be applying for a permit to take over operations from PG&E. Local groups started talks to take over the dam after the giant utility company said it would sell the facility, but then later said it was not, but without a plan for the dam.

Several projects in the works throughout Mendocino County for pedestrians. The Mendocino County Pedestrian Feasibility study released showing what projects are being considered for walking improvements in the county. The report reviewing current conditions, planning from the past and recommendations for the future from multiple County agencies. The Daily Journal reports the plan covered possible projects all over Mendocino County, like Point Arena, Fort Bragg, Ukiah, Willits, Covelo, Manchester and other towns that include priority projects in Ukiah.

Another form of elder abuse now illegal in Calif, the abandoning of elders in an emergency. The Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the bill into law Wednesday to increase civil penalties for caregivers who leave older Californians behind during an emergency. The Press Democrat reports the legislation was inspired after residents were left behind at two Fountaingrove senior care homes during the October 2017 fire storm. Senator Bill Dodd penned the bill which adds “abandonment” to a list of offenses under state law that prohibit elder abuse. Fines of up to $250,000 in civil damages, plus legal fees could be leveled at offenders.

Three dams are going up on the Russian River as we head into the summer recreational season. The first one at Healdsburg Veterans Memorial Beach to reduce the flow rate so the other two dams can be installed at Johnson’s Beach and Vacation Beach in Guerneville. The Johnson Beach dam should be done tomorrow and the one at Vacation Beach in about a week. The Healdsburg Veterans Memorial Beach dam is raising the water level 7 feet during the summer for those recreating at the beach.

A fire in Monterey County this week is blamed on a downed Pacific Gas & Electric power line. Cal Fire reports the fire east of King City was power line related. It’s burned more than 2,450 acres. PG&E has confirmed one of their power lines went down in the area, and they’re investigating why it fell to begin with. The fire has been contained and no injuries or building damage has been reported. The fire after PG&E was blamed for several fires in October 2017 and the Camp Fire last year. Together the fires killed more than 130 people. The company has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as it faced billions in liability from the fires.

Gov. Gavin Newsom along with legislative leaders coming up with a plan to reward local governments who put up housing quickly and punish others who don’t. The legislature has to vote on the proposed law which would mean pro housing areas get more money from the state for housing and transportation and those that don’t could face fines of more than a half million a month. And going even further, a court could take on a local government’s authority to issue housing permits.

The Public Utilities Commission is considering fines against Pacific Gas & Electric for the October 2017 wildfires in the North Bay and wine country. State regulators commenting saying the violations from PG&E during the time the fires broke out were, “extensive and disturbing.” The commission has ordered PG&E to create a mobile app for the public to report problems like downed power poles to help protect against future disasters after the utility’s equipment was blamed for some of the most destructive and deadliest fires in state history. The company has said it will fully cooperate with the PUC investigation and will work to reduce wildfire risk and help fire-destroyed and damaged communities recover.

The latest Calif. budget has been signed into law by the Governor. The nearly $215 billion dollar operating budget now law with Gov. Newsom signing it just hours before the midnight deadline yesterday after the Gov. and legislative leaders agreed on spending for housing and homelessness. There’s still a surplus of $21.5 billion with the budget expanding health care for people living in the country illegally and a fine for people who don’t buy insurance, just like in Obamacare when it first became law.

Still talking about a pool in Lakeport schools. A packed meeting for the School District board where the subject of building a new community pool was discussed. Most spoke positively about it, with some saying they were concerned about safety. The board also discussed other projects that could be considered listed in a report from the new Bond Projects Prioritization Committee. The board president said he thought the pool was a good idea and that it could cause more students to enroll. The board also discussed the declining enrollment and the Interim Superintendent announced it was his last board meeting as a new Superintendent starts soon. He got a standing ovation from the board.

A marketing firm’s been hired to help with branding in Lake County. Visit Lake County Calif, the nonprofit that runs the county’s Tourism Improvement District has hired Cubic Creative out of Tulsa, OK for the work. They’ll do some market research and come up with a branding idea for the County. The Record Bee reports it will probably include wine tourism, agricultural tourism and recreation. There will be a new logo and written statements to support the branding idea. The first pass should be in by the end of July.

Public access is being reopened at the top of the Oroville Dam. It’s the first time since the emergency spillway failed in February of 2017 causing nearly 200,000 people to evacuate the immediate area. The opening Saturday for pedestrians, bicyclists and those with disabilities. You cannot drive across the top of the dam, but there’s parking at the upper overlook. There’s still construction at the Dam and construction vehicles will be using part of the access on Dam Crest Road over the weekend.

A town hall at a church in Paradise after high levels of contaminants are found in water samples. Paradise Irrigation District found high levels of Benzene in the water, above the allowable limit. Camp Fire survivors at several workshops last night with a bunch of scientists from Purdue University, Butte College, Chico State and Cal Berkeley. There’s apparently differing opinions about how to handle the issue between scientists and the state and that’s put some of the recovery process on hold. Benzene is believed to be released out of melted plastic pipes with chronic exposure increasing cancer risks for humans.

A cop in Northern California accused of shooting and killing a man who they say was threatening them with a large stick. The police chief in Red Bluff says they ran into the man on the street who repeatedly refused to follow their orders of dropping the stick and to walk away from them last weekend during a confrontation. Cops say the first used a stun gun on the man, then a bean bag shot but he would not listen. They also say he lurched at them with the stick so one officer fired his gun and hit the man in the upper torso. They then tried CPR on the man who was taken to a hospital and died. The cop who shot him, a 15-year veteran is now on administrative leave.

One man’s arrested another on the run still after a drive by death in Clearlake. Police have arrested Miguel Becerra in connection to the shooting death of Steven Stone. The chief of police in Clearlake says they’re searching for the man’s younger brother, 26 year old Christian Becerra. Both men have ties to Clearlake and Southern Calif. Police say the men were involved in Stone’s death June 17th at Trombetta’s RV Resort. Police say they got a tip about the Becerra brothers and that Christian was involved in an altercation before the murder, and that someone with him there was also present when Stone was shot. A woman present when Miguel was arrested apparently charged at cops, so she got into some trouble. The FBI is also working to try to find Christian, who’s considered armed and dangerous.

A man from Potter Valley who shot his neighbor’s dogs while they were inside their doghouses inside a fenced pen has been placed on supervised felony probation. 67 year old Dr. Benjamin Meyer, a local Ukiah physician found guilty in April on two counts of felony animal abuse and he admitted to the personal use of a firearm in the commission of the felonies. He has to serve 6 months in jail and has to surrender August 29th. He also can no longer have firearms and ammunition.

 

 

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Hard to find housing since the Redwood Complex fire. 400 homes lost in the October 2017 fire in Mendocino County. But there’s money available for low-income homeowners or renters through CalHome. They’re offering zero percent interest loans and the first payment doesn’t even have to come for 30 years with up to $100,000 to rebuild. The program part of the California-Department of Housing and Community Development after a one million dollar grant for the loans. North Coast Opportunities is administering the loans after doing so first in Lake County. The expansion into Mendocino County last month with one family qualifying for a loan for a manufactured home so far.

To apply for a CalHome Loan or to see if you are eligible, contact Shauna Dyer at (707) 234-7020.

A woman in Ukiah’s been arrested for the death of her newborn. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s office reports 24 year old Yareli Diaz was arrested after they got a call to a hospital for the suspicious death of one day old Mia Diaz. Yareli told police she had no idea she was pregnant and delivered the baby at home. They say the woman delivered the baby but didn’t care for it and tried hiding it from her parents. She put the baby in her car all day, then that evening her friend talked her into bringing the baby to the hospital. The child was already dead and the hospital says it should have been a healthy baby but died because her mouth and nose were covered by towels and the placenta. She has one other child and deputies say she indeed knew she was pregnant again. She’s being held in jail for murder on $500,000.

It’s mosquito season and the state Department of Public Health is reminding you to protect yourself from West Nile virus. They say activity is increasing in Calif. so it’s important to take every measure to not be bitten. The virus spreads to humans and animals from the bite of an infected mosquito. There’s standing water around too because of late-spring rains. And hot temperatures don’t help bringing more of the pests out. Right now West Nile virus activity is about what’s expected, increasing when it gets hotter and lowering in the fall. Remember to use bugspray or lemon eucalyptus oil and beware especially at dawn and dusk, make sure you get rid of any standing water, and have tight-fitting screens to keep mosquitoes out of your house.

The 24 hour mental health crisis center has moved from East Gobbi Street. Redwood Community Services moved instead to South Dora Street, near Yokayo Elementary School. The Daily Journal reports the center’s CFO says they moved to save money. They were apparently paying a mortgage on the other building and the crisis center needed its own space. Apparently, administrators at the elementary school had been notified before the move. The old crisis center location across from another spot for the gravely mentally ill.

Proposals and bids being accepted for an expansion and other improvements to the Mendocino County jail telephone system. The county asking for a Request for Proposal for inmate services with telephones and tablets for inmates at the main jail and juvenile hall in Ukiah. Those interested have until Aug. 12th to submit their bid with presentations and selections sometime in August. Work to begin in November. The phone system upgrade at the same time as a jail expansion project. The Daily Journal reports there are currently about 300 inmates at the county jail.

The Fort Bragg City Council says it’ll help the Skunk Train owners who are expanding on the old Georgia Pacific site. The city agreeing to apply for a $17 million federal grant for the rail and tie replacement, plus to go towards repairing a collapsed tunnel and the 134-year old roundhouse. The Daily Journal reports the grant is needed to help renovate the railroad’s facility, add freight service, and build a retail, hotel and residential development on the 77 acres they purchased at the mill site. The Skunk Train management says they’re also planning to park water tanker rail cars along the tracks between Willits and Fort Bragg to help for protection from wildfires along the rail line.

State Senator Bill Dodd’s legislation signed into law by the Gov. to suspend horse racing licenses if necessary, to protect the health and safety of horses and riders. Lake Co News reports a veterinarian has also been named to the California Horse Racing Board. It all comes after the Gov. instructed the Horse Racing Board to put new safety measures in place at Santa Anita Park and have examinations to see if any individual horse might have a higher risk of injury before racing. 38 horses have been scratched or denied entry at Santa Anita since the new review process started earlier this month after several horses died at the racetrack for unknown reasons.

Butte, Glenn and Tehama Counties are suspending all burn permits. Cal Fire prohibiting all residential outdoor burning of branches and leaves starting Monday, July 1st. There’s a lot more grass after heavy rain this winter. Now Cal Fire says the warmer weather and winds is further drying the grass increasing fire danger. The burn permits are suspended for the higher elevations of eastern Tehama County which includes several towns and the City of Red Bluff. Lower elevation communities were suspended earlier this month. Butte County suspended burn permits after Chico and Oroville had a heat wave several weeks ago.

A man injured after an alleged attack from another man with a knife. The news site, Red Headed Blackbelt reporting a woman called police from McKinleyville saying a man was trying to stab her dad and she was trying to get the knife away from the suspected stabber. Humboldt County Sheriff’s dept called to the scene and scanner reports say the knife was taken away then a taser was used. But the news site reports it wasn’t clear who got the knife away from the suspect. The victim had a knife wound to his throat and an ambulance was brought to the home. No word on the victim’s injuries or if an arrest was made.

A couple of free fishing days. No fishing license is needed on Free Fishing Day. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife says it’s a great opportunity for folks to learn how to fish. The Free Fishing Days are every year somewhere between the Fourth of July and Labor Day holidays. This summer it’s Saturday, July 6th and Saturday, Aug. 31. You must follow other rules though if you’re out on a water body…

Anglers can review the sport fishing regulations online (www.wildlife.ca.gov/regulations) or use CDFW’s mobile web site to view freshwater limits and regulations specific to a body of water (https://map.dfg.ca.gov/sportfishingregs/).

 

KHALID – TALK

ED SHEERAN – I DON’T CARE

BILLIE EILISH – BAD GUY

SHAWN MENDES – IF I CAN’T HAVE YOU

PANIC! AT THE DISCO – HEY LOOK MA, I MADE IT

JONAS BROTHERS – COOL

ANDY GRAMMER – DON’T GIVE UP ON ME

PINK – WALK ME HOME

KATY PERRY – NEVER REALLY OVER

HALSEY – NIGHTMARE

DAN + SHAY – SPEECHLESS

ED SHEERAN – CROSS ME

5 SECONDS OF SUMMER – EASIER

THOMAS RHETT – LOOK WHAT GOD GAVE HER

LIZZO – TRUTH HURTS

TAYLOR SWIFT – YOU NEED TO CALM DOWN

BRYCE VINE – LA LA LAND

AJ MITCHELL – ALL MY FRIENDS

DJ KHALED – JUST US

LEWIS CAPALDI – SOMEONE YOU LOVED

SHAED – TRAMPOLINE

TRAVIS SCOTT – WAKE UP

MAX & QUINN XC11 – LOVE ME LESS

MARK RONSON – FIND U AGAIN

FITZ & THE TANTRUMS – 123456

CHAINSMOKERS & BEBE REXHA – CALL YOU MINE

MARTIN GARRIX – SUMMER DAYS

TWENTY ONE PILOTS – CHLORINE

SHAWN MENDES & CAMILLA CABELLO – SENORITA

MILEY CYRUS – MOTHER’S DAUGHTER

Virus-free. www.avast.com

A fire behind a motel in Ukiah had visitors evacuating. Firefighters attacking the fire that started Tuesday in a shed behind the Motel 6 on North State Street then spread to the motel’s attic and roof. Deputies went door to door to get people out of the motel, with one disabled person helped out of the building then into an ambulance. The Daily Journal reports a witness saying they saw a couple of people with propane torches to weeds. The owner of the motel says 48 rooms, a conference room and other areas were damaged by the fire and he thought the shed might have been broken into by some homeless people. A drone flew over the building with the help of a DA’s office investigator to locate hot spots in the building.

The yearly report from the Mendocino County Business Improvement District has been released showing the state of tourism. The Daily Journal reports the report gathering info from people and businesses in the County and from the Mendocino County Tourism Commission with their proposed budget and recommendations for the future. It says the county’s the ninth of 20 counties with a big share of tourism-related employment and travel spending the last year they have data for, 2017, was up more than 4%.  Some of the goals for the future include increasing tourism revenue marketing, public relations, and a sales plan, more participation with partners for decision making, data sharing with partners and collaborating countywide for a new website.

An employee of a Ford car dealership in the Morgan Hill area opens fire, killing two managers, then himself. Police got several calls to the Ford dealership last night finding one dead man when they got there who they say was the shooter. They say the shooting happened after some sort of workplace confrontation. They say he had a handgun on him when he was found and two other men with gunshot wounds were found inside the building. Police telling local TV reporters the shooter knew he was about to be fired and brought guns with him to work, shooting his manager after being fired and a supervisor who tried to wrestle with the suspect before he was killed.

Tickets are going out to residents in Lakeport if they’ve not abated weeds and other dry vegetation. There was a June 1st deadline and the City Council decided to declare dry weeds, brush and other dry vegetation a public nuisance. Citations go out after city staff members try to get property owners to comply first. A courtesy letter went out the first week of May from the Lakeport Fire Protection District reminding of the June 1st deadline. They then followed up to find which properties weren’t abated, finding 100 of them, giving them 10 days. Those who don’t comply get a warning or could be fined up to $500 for continued noncompliance.

A Calif. Congressman accused of using campaign funds for personal use, then blaming his wife. Court papers say Rep. Duncan Hunter of San Diego illegally used campaign money to fund romantic flings with lobbyists and congressional aides, detailing his alleged affairs. Duncan’s wife Margaret pleaded guilty to one corruption count and agreed to work with federal prosecutors and testify against her husband. He says he’s being targeted by politically motivated prosecutors who say he used campaign money for ski trips with one lobbyist who he stayed in a hotel room, ordering room service, then flying back to DC after. Prosecutors say he knew the money shouldn’t be used that way.

Stricter gun control laws going into effect in Calif. The new law to require background checks on ammunition purchases, something the Governor and others say will save lives. The law was approved by voters in 2016 with a July 1st effective date. Some ammunition dealers say their sales have skyrocketed the last several weeks. Supporters also say the new law can help cops find ghost guns that are not registered with the state.

Discussions continue by cities about what to do in the event Pacific Gas and Electric goes ahead with public safety power shutoffs if weather conditions warrant. So the Clearlake City Council is taking up the matter at their meeting tomorrow night. The council will consider solutions if power is shut down. It comes after PG&E equipment was determined to be the cause of the Camp Fire and several in Oct. 2017. Power to be shut off because of fire weather in an area considered to be high fire danger. The city manager says it’s highly likely it will happen this fire season.

A man has been rescued after driving 300-feet over the side of the road near Geyserville. Geyserville Fire reports the man went over the embankment at the Liberty Glen Campground yesterday, then had to wait 12 hours before a hiker heard him crying for help then saw his car. The man’s name has not been released and there’s no word what caused him to go down the embankment near Lake Sonoma and Warm Springs Creek. The Geyserville Fire Protection District and Cal Fire went to rescue the man last night and took him to a hospital. His injuries were non-life threatening.

No more private prisons for felons in Calif. The state has decided to stop using private out of state prisons after Gov. Schwarzenegger started the practice in 2006. That was apparently only supposed to be temporary because of overcrowding. Prisons back then had reached an all-time high of more than 173,000 inmates, double the original design capacity. Former Gov. Jerry Brown was against the practice while he was the state attorney general, and changes were made when he became Governor to lower prison populations. There are now about 126,000 inmates in state prisons, around a third more than their design capacity.

Changes are coming in Lake County to the way wireless companies can apply for permits for cell towers. The Board of Supervisors approving new regulations that it would be preferred for towers to be located in certain areas with stricter setbacks. It comes after a proposed cell tower was denied in District 1 of the County. But the developer is appealing the decision. There are federal guidelines the Board has to stay in line with. But certain aesthetic guidelines and setbacks are wanted by some supervisors along with where they can be put up.

PG&E is notifying residents they need to update their mobile number so they can be in touch should an emergency occur, or if power will be shut off with bad weather conditions for a fire. Those who received a postcard from the utility company apparently have incomplete or no contact information on file. PG&E saying it’s important to share the info so you can receive wildfire safety alerts, outage updates and other information. They will also post info on social media, inform local news providers and radio stations, and on their own website, pge.com.

 

 

A man accused of having child pornography has pleaded no contest. The Mendocino County DA reports Russell Haber of Gualala withdrew a not guilty plea after striking a deal to a single felony of unlawful possession of child pornography. The DA’s office says the agreement basically means the man is pleading guilty. Haber was apparently on supervised probation from another kiddy porn case when he was arrested again in March 2017. After his agreement, his two cases were sent to the Probation Department for sentencing recommendation. He’s due back July 19th to be sentenced. He faces 80 months in state prison and is staying in Sheriff Dept. custody until that time.

A fire burning near Cache Creek Dam has been contained before spreading. The fire seen from the Mount Konocti Lookout, but firefighters first couldn’t find where the pillar of smoke was coming from. Upon further investigation, they found it burning on private property near the Cache Creek Dam. Dispatch reports say the fire had a slow to moderate spread in heavy fuel. Some power lines nearby were de-energized, but no dropped lines were reported. It burned where the 2015 Rocky and 2016 Clayton fires burned. When firefighters contained it, it had burned about 9 acres.

A public meeting’s being held by the Bureau of Land Management Ukiah Field Office to get input on a wind energy project. The town hall two weeks from today, Tuesday, July 9th, for the proposed Walker Ridge Wind Energy Project in Lake and Colusa counties. There’s currently a 30-day public comment period happening which ends July 24th and they’ll accept written public comments at the open-house for the project to include up to 42 wind turbines on about 2,270 acres of BLM-managed public land along Walker Ridge, within the Indian Valley Management Area.

The open house meeting will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Moose Lodge, 15900 State Highway 20, Clearlake Oaks.

A unanimous approval on the new fiscal year budget in Lakeport. The City Council voted to allow a small deficit and looks at finishing some major capital projects. The final budget was presented to the council last week. Lake Co News reports it focuses mostly on public safety, roads, human capital, project execution, cost control and economic development with $12.7 million in revenue and $16.3 million in spending.

A man from Hidden Valley Lake crashes his motorcycle and gets arrested for suspicion of DUI after a crash into a car. Police say 22 year old Josiah Fleenor had major injuries after the Saturday night crash in Hidden Valley Lake. The CHP says he was on a 2019 Kawasaki motorcycle but because of how intoxicated he was, his bike went off the roadway and crashed into a parked car. Cops also say he wasn’t using his safety equipment and that booze was a factor in his crash. He was taken to a hospital and arrested for DUI.

Lake County Sheriff Dept. preparing for fire season updates its language to use in the case of evacuations and sheltering. Apparently the way things were worded was different among various agencies and jurisdictions. The Sheriff’s office says that sometimes meant confusion. So in March the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services put together a panel who’s recommended some standard terms to use in evacuation or shelter in place situations. They include what an evacuation order is, what a warning is, and what shelter in place means too.

A fire reported behind the FoodMaxx in Ukiah on Airport Blvd quickly put out. The bonfire reported twice yesterday. The fire apparently used for cooking, didn’t pose a danger as it wasn’t near foliage and had bare dirt around it. But the Fire Authority says property owners should put up ‘No Trespassing’ signs. The fire after several campers were ordered to leave the area between the airport and the railroad tracks. And inmate crews were working to clear dry grass and vegetation in the area yesterday too.

The Konocti Harbor Resort probably not reopening this summer after all. The date was for June, then it was pushed to fall after a wet winter. But the Managing Director says there were things found during renovation that were unexpected, but says they’re making progress. The have to deal with long term water damage and plumbing and sewage repairs in the restaurant. The managing director says they’ve pulled out old carpeting, remodeled some cabanas and hotel rooms and put in new flooring. They’re looking to open with 100 rooms, a restaurant, a bar and a convenience store.

The Zoning Administrator in Ukiah is considering two projects. One is on South State St. and the other is simply a thumbs up or down for a new canopy for a gas station being renovated on East Gobbi Street. The meeting Thursday to consider a minor use permit for Detail Garage and Window Tinting. It used to be a gas station and repair shop known as Redwood Tree Service, but it’s been vacant for years.

Some zoning ordinance changes are being considered by the Lake County Board of Supervisors regarding cell towers and antennae. This after Verizon wanted to put up a new tower and was requesting a bunch of variances including setting the tower back and what the access requirements should be for an unused tower in downtown Middletown. The Lake County Planning Commission denied a permit for Verizon, who’s appealing. County Counsel says they’re looking to encourage towers go up in nonresidential areas and for several carriers to use a single facility so there’s not a bunch of equipment spread out around the County. The Board’s also considering if they should buy a generator to power the Courthouse should PG&E turn power off in a fire weather event.

A man from Clearlake appears in court after a robbery and assault to be held over for trial. 29 year old Paul Mendez had his preliminary hearing to see if there was enough evidence to hold him over for the trial. He’s pleaded not guilty for battery with serious bodily injury, robbery and assault with a deadly weapon with likely gross bodily injury for a December attack on another man, Nicholas Vining. It looks like the trial will happen sometime in September with the next court date at the end of August. Vining was interviewed in the hospital after the attack telling cops he was attacked by Mendez who was arrested in Clearlake Oaks. He admitted to the attack at the time and was booked into jail. Another suspect was also caught, Charles Drake in jail on $75,000 bail.

The body of an automotive journalist has been found. The Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office reports a body was found last Thursday in the Mokelumne River north of Valley Springs. They say they think it was 44-year-old David Gordon Johnson who was reported missing almost three weeks ago. Police say his girlfriend told them Johnson was headed home after test driving a motorcycle for a couple of days in Calif. and Nevada. Search teams found his clothes, cellphone and a laptop a few feet away from the fast-moving river.

Fort Bragg police have announced their annual Day in the Park. On Saturday, July 13th Fort Bragg Police along with several local community organizations are hosting the event at Bainbridge Park. They say it’s to bring families together for a fun safe event at the same time learning about resources and organizations in the community. It’s free and open to all ages, but focuses on children. There’s also free lunch with entertainment and a talent show.

Organizations who wish to host a booth or activity at the Day in the Park event may contact Sergeant O’Neal at toneal@fortbragg.com.

The East Fire has grown, but is apparently not a danger. Fire crews are patrolling and monitoring activity along Buck Ridge and East Ridge to the Middle Eel River. The Forest reporting repairing camp sites, firelines and helispots, removing berms, dispersing slash, hauling trash and covering cut trees with limbs or slash. They’re advising anyone out hiking to stay away from the area. Cool weather has the fire activity minimal. So far the fire 23 miles northeast of Covelo in Trinity County has burned 410 acres and is 30% contained. No structures have burned and no injuries have been reported.

The DMV is closing for a half day to get ready for the federal Real ID program. The Department of Motor Vehicles is closing Wednesday, July 24th until 1 p.m. As of next year all Americans have to have updated Real ID identification cards to travel without a passport. The Sacramento Bee newspaper reports the DMV has been struggling to launch the program efficiently. The agency asking as many as 3.5 million Californians who already applied for Real ID cards to send in a second proof of address because the initial system didn’t meet federal guidelines.

Calif. lawmakers vote yes for a tax on those who don’t buy state mandated health insurance. If you recall, that’s a main piece of former President Barack Obama’s health care law, the Affordable Care Act. But Republicans cut that part of the law out, but not in Calif. Gov. Gavin Newsom had proposed something similar just after he took office. The US Supreme Court had upheld the mandate in Obamacare, then the penalty was eliminated by Republicans in 2017 to begin this year, part of the tax cuts President Trump signed into law. Now Democrats in Calif. are looking to reinstitute the mandate, no Republican legislators voted for it and one Democrat in the Assembly voted no, Rudy Salas Jr. of Bakersfield.

A man from Hopland has been arrested as part of a human trafficking sting. Clearlake police got a call last Thursday morning to a report of someone being held against their will and there they found a 21-year woman with minor injuries. Cops say the victim saw the suspect’s car as she spoke to them, so they went after it. The men got out and ran, but police found Javier Alvarez of Hopland hiding in a backyard. He was arrested and held on $150,000 bond for first degree robbery plus there were other alleged offenses including human trafficking, assault, extortion and false imprisonment. The second man has been only identified as “Armondo,” but he’s not been caught yet. He’s described as a thin older Hispanic male adult, about 6 feet tall, with salt and pepper gray hair.

The Lake County Planning Commission is starting to update the County General Plan’s “Housing Element” with a town hall. It’s mandated by the state for all local government’s general plans to promote housing development and to meet the housing needs of their residents. The Record Bee reports in its staff report, Lake County Community Development Director and the Principal Planner say besides updates, there are also new state requirements that need to be implemented, mostly in line with affordable housing, and they have to include state assembly bill 2162 requiring “supportive housing” to be a “use by right” anywhere that multifamily and mixed use is allowed.

There are two new vacancies on the Ukiah Unified School District board of trustees after two moved outside of the area. Registered voters living in the trustee area center or trustee area north who are interested can apply at www.uusd.net. Applications are also available at 511 s. orchard ave in Ukiah, and are due back by 4 pm on Wednesday. Interviews will take place in open sessions on Aug 6th and 7th, at 5 pm.

CalFire says there is a fire is burning on property owned by the University of California’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources. The 40-acre fire started this afternoon off Scott Forbes Road, east of Browns Valley. No structures are being threatened, and evacuations have not been issued.

A special meeting is planned for today as the Ukiah Valley Sanitation District board of directors look to take over billing of their own customers and the discussion of a Mendocino County Grand Jury report, which said the board needs to be more transparent with taxpayers and to negotiate the joint powers agreement with the city. The meeting gets underway at 6 pm at 1511 laws Avenue.

The latest update shows the East Fire is 10% contained after burning 378 acres. Crews are using a strategy to confine the fire between East Ridge, Buck Ridge and Wrights ridge to the south.

Over the next 365 days, a private property boundary survey, audit of the North Coast Rail Authority finances, a trail assessment and a plan to railbank a line from the Mendocino County line northward are all in the works. Senator Mike McGuire told attendees at the Ukiah Valley Conference Center on Saturday about his plans for the Great Redwood Trail and said that the concerns of some of the 1900 property owners living near the proposed trail will be addressed by developers, adding that all the extra people in the area may actually cut down on crime. He also says the trails will bring more money to Ukiah, Willits, Eureka and other areas with new visitors paying for lodging, food and other expenses, and will also draw more residents to the area.

If you’ve ever needed a way to track when your bus would arrive, there’s now an app for that. Mendocino Transit Authority now has one called Route Shout 2.0 available from Google Play or the App store. The app tracks buses in real time so anyone with a mobile phone can see bus locations, check schedules and plan for the exact arrival of their bus. More info at mendocinotransit.org

Approval would be needed by a judge in bankruptcy court, but PG&E is requesting $10.9 million dollars to pay bonuses to what the company describes as key executives as they work through a chapter 11 bankruptcy to restructure finances. If approved, 50% of the bonuses will be paid in cash, 50% in restricted stock.

June 8th and 9th, PG&E shut off power to some 20,000 customers in North Bay and Sierra Foothills due to hot and windy weather. According to an incident report filed with the California Public Utilities Commission, crews found five areas that had wind damage in the Sierra Foothills. A fallen tree in Oroville had hit a shed and cable wire, and broken trees on conductors and a broken cable line were found in Butte County. Repairs were made and the power was back on in less than 24 hours.

An announcement by PG&E last week that large parts of the state could lose power for up to five days at a time. Certain conditions would need to be present before the outages would be prescribed including a red flag warking, low humidity and sustained winds over 25 mph with gusts up to 40 mph. The Daily Journal reports that Ukiah city officials have said that water and sewer will be available during the outages because gas generators will be used to keep the plants working, and natural gas services should not be affected. Residents are advised to stock up on water, flashlights, batteries and other supplies useful when the power is out. Skilled nursing facilities, intermediate and long term care facilities, nursing homes, and other vital facilities are worried about the outages, and say that they could force the residents to be moved during prolonged outages.

As fire season gets underway, authorities are anticipating a busy season ahead, and The Governor’s Office of Emergency Services had put a working group together last March to recommend standardized terms to be used during evacuations or shelter in place events. The purpose is to cut down on confusion during emergencies where various agencies and jurisdictions are involved and giving instructions to the public. Moving forward, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office and the Office of Emergency Services will use the following language to instruct residents. An Evacuation Order will be given when there is a threat to life or property, and residents will be legally required to leave. Evacuation Warnings will be issued when there is a potential threat to life or property. This will be the time that residents who may potentially have to evacuate will make their preparations. A shelter in place will be issued when evacuations are not necessary. The public will be instructed to go indoors, shut and lock their doors and windows and prepare to self sustain until further notice.

The NCAA wrote a letter to the chairs of two state assembly committees last week essentially saying that if California passes a bill allowing college athletes to be paid for the use of their own name, images or likeness, the schools may be prohibited from participating in championships. 23 NCAA division schools would be affected- for of which are in the Pac 12 conference. The bill, which passed the Senate last month is being discussed today in a hearing by the Assembly’s Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism and Internet Media Committee.

A 5.6 magnitude quake struck Northern California on Saturday night according to the United States Geological Survey, which says the quake hit around 8:53 pm, about 37 miles southwest of Eureka Tremors were also felt in Ferndale and Scotia. Recently there have been dozens of quakes in Nevada, and about 1000 in the southern part of California in just the past three weeks.

A prescribed burn along highway 128 between the Monticello Dam and the town of Winters in Yolo County will move ahead today through Friday. About 65 acres will be burned in an operation first scheduled for Jun 10th but was delayed due to the Sand Fire. The burns will begin around 8:30 each day and be done by3pm. The burn area has been scorched by five major fires in recent years.

Get ready, summer is here and Pacific Gas and Electric is preparing to turn power off and says it could be up to five days at a time. A PG&E representative speaking to the City Council says 48 hours, which had previously been reported, is a reasonable amount of time to expect the power off, but to also be prepared for up to five days. They say the shutoffs are a tool they’re using to minimize fires starting to begin with especially after the Camp Fire which burned 14,000 homes and killed 85 people. Last year there were some shutoffs too, but this year they will be on transmission lines, which could mean the entire grid is turned off. Look for red flag warnings as a possible indicator of power being turned off.

Running water and sewer services will be provided by the City of Ukiah during Public Safety Power Shutoffs. As we’ve reported Pacific Gas and Electric is planning power shut offs, but the Ukiah Electric Utility director tells the Daily Journal they have gas generators that can operate the water and sewer plants. The city manager of emergency services says if PG&E does turn power off for up to five days, residents should be prepared to have batteries and flashlights and stock sustainable food and water. And a reminder to keep your garage door open if it runs on electric and get battery or solar-powered devices so you can charge cell phones or other electronics.

After a mediator proposed a settlement with PG&E regarding the October 2017 firestorm and last year’s Camp Fire, Mendocino County’s Executive office announcing their own agreement with the utility company. $415 million dollars to the County to cover damages caused by fires including the Redwood Complex that killed nine people and destroyed more than 500 structures. The money won’t be distributed until PG&E’s bankruptcy case is complete. 14 public entities with claims from the 2015 Butte Fire, the 2017 North Bay Fires, and the 2018 Camp Fire are included in the one billion dollar settlement.

The new budget in Lakeport has been approved. Just over 16 million dollars in spending with money coming out of reserves for some infrastructure projects. The Record Bee reports the city’s predicting more than $12.5 million in revenue, which is 6 percent off from the current fiscal year and about $3.5 million lower than planned spending. The city’s finance director says they have to do some repairs after the winter storms from two years ago, and this year which amount to millions in damage. There are also road repairs and infrastructure improvements included in the projects. It will mean a deficit of about $131,000 for the general fund. The city manager says the reserves are wisely spent on one time projects.

As PG&E announces settlements and power shutoffs, they’re also looking to distribute millions in bonuses to key executives during their bankruptcy proceedings. The utility is asking to give out almost $11 million in bonuses but the judge in their Chapter 11 case would have to approve it. The bonuses made public as part of a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The bonuses are incentives for key employees related to safety, operational and financial goals. It comes after the utility filed for bankruptcy this past January after wildfire claims and other liabilities amounted to $51.69 billion in debts. Almost all of the October 2017 Northern Calif. fires and last year’s Camp Fire are blamed on PG&E’s equipment. The company’s filing says about half of the bonuses will be paid in cash and the other 50 percent with restricted stock.

One of the first bills signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom is for kittens to quickly get adopted. The bill’s author Assemblyman Bill Quirk says it surprised him to find out kittens have to be held in shelters up to three days before they can be adopted and it leads to many being unnecessarily euthanized because they’re not properly cared for. But apparently there is still a Calif. law saying animals who are adopted must be neutered or spayed before being placed in homes which could mean they’re two months old.

The legislature has moved a $13 billion school construction bond forward so it will be on the ballot next year. Then another for 2022 also moved forward. There was $9 billion in state funding from the last state bond but it’s already been spent or earmarked. The latest bond approved for the ballot won unanimous approval of the Senate Education Committee Wednesday. It still needs some language tweaking though before the full Senate takes a vote on the bill. The state supplements the cost of construction projects with bonds from local property taxes. Plus the state also pays about half of what it costs to build a new school and another 60 percent to renovate a school or college campus.

A new vaccination bill has moved another step forward to give public health officials not doctors, the authority to exempt some children from getting immunized before going to school. An Assembly committee approved the bill during a lively hearing with a 9-2 vote after some wording in the bill was changed. Supporters of the bill say some parents look for doctors to write an exemption even if it’s not needed. There were hundreds at the hearing though calling it government overreach. Some saying they wouldn’t follow the rules if they’re adopted and signed into law by the governor.

The general land use plan still in the midst of being approved by Fort Bragg’s Planning Commission and the City Council for the Georgia-Pacific mill site. The work at the same time the Skunk Train owners were approved for a purchase of part of the site. The plan supposed to be done sometime this summer to allow for transportation studies to start and planning efforts to begin before April of 2021. The Advocate newspaper reports the Planning Commission hearing from developers about plans for the site including retail, housing and hospitality. There’s also some cleanup set for the old mill site. The soil removal has been done, but there are old ponds that need to be remediated where high levels of arsenic remain. And there’s still discussion about existing businesses and new businesses plans for the site.

A woman in Shasta County court found guilty in the death of two teenagers she hit drunk driving in 2017. 27 year old Kendra Andersen-Schwegerl convicted of two counts of Second Degree Murder and other crimes yesterday for the crash into a car full of teenagers stopped at a red light in Redding. At the time, police said Andersen-Schwegerl was going 100 miles an hour killing 18 year old Erica Young and 19 year old Lacy Jackson, both of Hoopa, the three others in the car were also injured. Police say the driver had beer in her car and was drinking at two bars over three hours before the accident. Her blood alcohol was .254% about an hour and a half after the crash. She’ll be sentenced July 19th and faces forty years to life in prison.

Another phone scam circulating thru Northern Calif. this time in Fortuna with a claim it’s PG&E calling to warn of electricity being shut off unless a payment is made immediately. One business owner in Southern Humboldt saying they got a realistic sounding robo call saying it was PG&E. An employee answered the call that said PG&E would shut off power in 40 minutes for non-payment. But the owner said they knew it was a scam and didn’t fall for it. Fortuna police say the same scam happened earlier this year with the calls coming from a 415 area code.

UC California is making changes after the college admissions scandal. The scandal which involved some celebrities included fifty people cheating on tests to get their kids admitted to prestigious schools. The school system will now monitor donations so there are no admissions based on money being donated or paid. The UC President Janet Napolitano says they’re taking their zero tolerance policy extremely seriously and will be proactive, transparent and accountable in the future.

At the same time the California State University system reportedly kept $1.5 billion in reserves but has raised tuition. A new report says the system also lobbied lawmakers for more state funding. The report made public yesterday by the state auditor says CSU had a massive surplus the last decade that comes mainly from student tuition at the same time, the system almost doubled student tuition across its 23 campuses. The auditor’s report says the system also did not fully inform legislators and students about its surplus. Tuition at CSU campuses was up from about $3,000 for the 2008-2009 school year to almost double, at $5,700 last school session.

 

More than 1,000 unsafe conditions found by PG&E as they inspected their power equipment across the state which was mandated by a court. The utility company admits to as many as 1,200 issues on hundreds of thousands of power distribution poles, nearly 50,000 transmission structures and 222 substations covering more than 5,500 miles of transmission line and 25,200 miles of distribution line. The company says they’ve fixed every problem that was considered an “immediate safety risk” and about 97% of the conditions on poles. The utility company saying they needed to do better. It comes a day after they announced a one billion dollar settlement for the 2017 and 2018 wildfires in Calif, including the Camp Fire, the deadliest and most destructive in state history which Cal Fire says was sparked by a PG&E transmission line.

A resolution’s been approved by the Lakeport City Council declaring it a public nuisance for homeowners to have dry weeds or brush or other dried out vegetation. It’s added to the city’s municipal code to reduce possible wildland fires in the city limits. But it has to be determined, before a citation or fine, that the weeds are a nuisance to the city. The city sending out notices in May to homeowners, giving them until June 1st to clear everything away. Anyone found in violation has 10 days to abate hazardous weeds after getting notice, then if they don’t comply, they get a citation and a $100 fine.

Cal Fire’s Sonoma-Lake-Napa Unit is doing a prescribed burn along Highway 128 between the Monticello Dam and Winters. The burning was set for all week, last week but was canceled because of the Sand Fire that started in Yolo County. So now Cal Fire has decided to go for it today during morning hours thru next Friday, June 28th. They looking to burn about 65 acres so expect to see some smoke for the next week if you’re in the area or driving nearby. There will also be traffic control in the area. There’s been five big fires in the area over the last five years, so the burn is to protect the area from another large fire in the future.

One of the two men blamed in the Ghostship Warehouse fire in Oakland still testifying at their murder trial. Max Harris and Derick Almena are accused of 36 deaths after a fire broke out during a concert in December of 2016. Prosecutors say the place was so packed with art, old furniture and other debris, that it became a deathtrap. The prosecution questioning Harris this week who calls himself the executive director of the artist collective at the space, but says it wasn’t a serious title. He says all exits were clear and says he tried to put out the fire as he escaped. The master tenant of the space Almena’s wife Micah Allison will testify in her husband’s defense next week.

The new superintendent of schools in Lakeport is set to take over. The School District is getting ready for new leadership as the new fiscal year begins next month. Lake Co News reports there are also several new school administrators coming aboard at the same time the interim Superintendent Patrick Iaccino has his last meeting next week. Iaccino was hired in January to help find a new superintendent who was hired last month. Jill Falconer, the Clear Lake High School principal is taking over July 1st. Iaccino says he and Falconer have been meeting to go over work, staffing and recruitments.

A lightning sparked fire in the Mendocino National Forest has grown over the last day, tripling in size. Lake Co News reports the fire in the Yolla Bolly Wilderness dubbed the East Fire has charred 125 acres. It’s reported about 43 miles west of Red Bluff and was first spotted Monday afternoon from the Anthony Peak Lookout. Firefighters reportedly watching the fire and areas of concern, its potential growth and the weather forecast. Yesterday they were working to remove dry brush and build containment lines. Another fire, pretty small, southeast of the East fire, the Haynes fire has burned ten acres.

The name of another Camp Fire victim has been released. The fire last year killed 85 people, but apparently not all of them have been identified publicly. Now the Butte County Sheriff’s Office releases the name of yet another victim. 72 year old Phyllis Salazar of Paradise. That brings the number of those positively identified to 78. 5 more have been tentatively identified, and two are still unknown.

One of the transmission lines believed to have started the Camp Fire has been permanently de-energized by PG&E. The Caribou-Palermo transmission line was turned off permanently as the utility company inspected lines, finding it as one of the riskiest in its coverage area. It runs along the Feather River and had been off since the fire broke out last December. But more problems were found on the line along with hundreds more determined to be an “immediate safety risk” with the same problem with a so called C-hook found on the line that started the Camp Fire.

A singer in Malaysia in trouble with the law for keeping a bear as a pet, even though she said she thought it was a dog. The sun bear was living with Zarith Sofia Yasin. She told Asia One in an interview that she had found the animal a couple weeks before, on the side of the road and wanted to nurse it back to health. She says she wasn’t intending to break the law, knowing it can’t be kept as a pet, she just wanted to save it. She named it Bruno and wanted to help it get well and give it to a zoo. Her apartment in Kuala Lumpur was raided after a video was seen of the bear crying from a window.

Calif. residents will be able to give their opinion on a plan for state health officials, not doctors, on medical exemptions for vaccinations. The Assembly Health Committee having a hearing which is expected to pack the room at the Capitol to discuss vaccines. Last month there was controversy at a meeting of the Senate with some in attendance shouting, “we will not comply” during a vote on the measure. But major changes have been made to the bill after the Gov. signaled he wasn’t a fan of the legislation. Now the bill says the public health department would only look over exemptions from doctors who have more than five in one school year at schools with vaccination rates of less than 95%. And the Gov. has said if it passes, he’ll sign it into law. It comes after measles started to spread again, reaching a 25-year high in the U.S. earlier this year.

Regulations are being worked on for a retrieval program for lost or abandoned commercial Dungeness crab gear. A public hearing of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife set for next Tuesday in Monterey on the matter. There was already one public hearing in April and a public comment period ends Monday. Right now all commercial Dungeness crab traps have to be removed from the water by 11:59 p.m. on the last day of the commercial Dungeness crab season. Any lost gear after the close of the season can be retrieved after the official closure. The state agency looking to reduce lost or abandoned trap gear in the ocean as they can become entangled to marine life and create navigational hazards to other boaters.

More than a dozen local governments in Northern California have agreed to settle with PG&E after their equipment was blamed for starting fires. The settlements with government bodies including Paradise and Butte County worth up to $1 billion have to be approved by the judge overseeing the Pacific Gas & Electric bankruptcy case. A mediator reportedly helped negotiate the deal which would give the town of Paradise $270 million, $252 million for Butte County, and $47.5 million for the Paradise Recreation and Parks District. The deal after several days of mediation in San Francisco with a retired Judge and 14 public entities who had claims from the 2015 Butte Fire, the 2017 North Bay Fires and the 2018 Camp Fire.

PG&E’s plan to cut power during fire weather events could leave Ukiah in the dark too. The city has its own Electric company, but as the Daily Journal reports the energy is delivered over high voltage transmission lines used jointly by several California utilities. So the “Public Safety Power Shutoffs” resulting in “high-risk transmission lines” being turned off could mean folks are in the dark in Ukiah too. This will be addressed at the City Council meeting tonight.  The newspaper reports city staff noting they will work hard to restore electrical services for customers as quickly as possible, but also note that customers should prepare for no power for up to 48 hours at a time.

The Mendocino County Board of Supervisors hearing about code enforcement from the Department of Planning and Building Services. Improvements to that department have mean less complaints than last year. The Daily Journal reports violation notices are also on the decline year over year. There are a couple hundred open code enforcement cases, mostly due to unpermitted construction and grading, cannabis complaints, unauthorized development, and problems with structures.

Good news for a couple of high school teams from Ukiah who went to a National Competition for underwater robotics. The teams represented Northern Calif. at the SeaPerch Challenge in Maryland. The “Torque Team” was 7th and “H2Bros” finished 29th out of 84 high school teams. The program is to build Remotely Operated Vehicles out of a kit and those who win have to be top of their game in physics, engineering and math. The Daily Journal reports it’s Ukiah High’s third year in a row to go to Nationals.

A greenlight in Lakeport for the city to declare anyone with dry weeds, brush and other vegetation declared a public nuisance. The City Council tells city staff to find a way to encourage the hazards be removed using current citation procedures to get folks to comply. It’s all to reduce the risk of wildfires. The Lakeport Fire Protection District putting pressure on property owners to get rid of the vegetation off vacant and large lots, sending notices last month with a June 1st deadline to get the weeds and brush removed. The city then inspected the properties to see if they were in compliance and found about 100 were not, but there were also late season rains, which added more weeds.

The Teacher of the Year has been named in Lake County. An education specialist and resource teacher from Mountain Vista Middle School, Kerry Smith ets the honor. The school principal says Smith is “positive, funny, kind, exciting, friendly and helpful”. She also was touted for her teaching skills for students who get independent education plans. She teaches grades 6-8, working with math teachers and general education students struggling with math. Smith and other Teachers will be honored in October at an Excellence in Education Awards Dinner in Lakeport.

The Lake County Public Works director has been names as the interim Water Resources director. The Board of Supervisors has named Scott De Leon as interim Water Resources director. Lake Co News reports the board announced De Leon accepted the appointment until there’s a full recruitment for the job. The last Water Resources director, David Cowan is moving back to his home state of Texas to be the watershed manager, where he says he can be closer to his grandkids.

A kidney doctor in Lakeport has lost his license due to a sex assault case. Lake Co News reports the Medical Board of California revoked Dr. Mohamad Moutaz Almawaldi’s license last week after he pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor count of sexual battery. He got three years probation and he has to register as a sex offender, that’s what led to the loss of his license. It all goes back to the case from August 2017 where a former employee of Almawaldi’s says he forcefully kissed her and pulled down her shirt. He was arrested last year in the case and later indicted. The case was then reported to the Medical Board of California.

Some fire starts in the Mendocino National Forest after a recent lightning storm in the Yolla Bolly Wilderness. Lake Co News reports the fire was spotted Monday from the Anthony Peak Lookout. It has been named the East Fire and was reported about 43 miles west of Red Bluff and charred 40 acres so far. Smokejumpers were assigned to the fire which is burning in the Yellow fire scar from back in 2008. Another fire’s being monitored, the Haynes fire.

The Gov. has apologized to California Native American Peoples for violence, mistreatment and neglect against them over many years. Gov. Newsom has also announced he’s started the Truth and Healing Council for Native Americans to tell their side of events between the state and tribes. Newsom says the state has to “reckon with our dark history” after Native Americans suffered violence, discrimination and exploitation which had been sanctioned by the state over many years.  The Governor’s new council will be led and convened by his tribal advisor. There will also be representatives from tribes, state and local agencies and other relevant non-governmental stakeholders.

A new chief has been named for the Russian River Fire Protection District. Sonoma County Fire Chief Mark Heine of Windsor will take over, managing 11 firefighters who work on about 20 square miles along the Russian River between Forestville and Monte Rio. The same Chief was named for Windsor and Rincon Valley, then added the Bennett Valley and Mountain fire agencies. The four agencies all consolidated and known now as the Sonoma County Fire District. The Russian River district has not had a chief since the end of 2017, when the last Chief Max Ming was fired without public explanation.

A man from Potter Valley has been killed after a solo car crash on the 101 north of the Sonoma County line. The CHP reports the man in his mid 40’s, was headed north towards Mendocino County yesterday afternoon around 5:30 at about 80 mph then he lost control of his pickup, skidding off the road, across the lanes again, then hit a rock and rolled over. His truck then landed back right side up on the highway. But he was found dead inside the truck without a seatbelt on. Nobody else was with him at the time. CHP investigating why the crash happened.

The latest count of homelessness in Butte County shows a spike, because of the Camp Fire, but other reasons too. The spring count in the latest point in time report released Monday shows homelessness up by 16 percent. The report shows the Camp Fire pushed many into homelessness, some staying in FEMA mobile homes and others even sleeping in cars, on the street or in a park. The homeless count on March 28th is a national survey required by all local municipalities in order to get money from the fed. It’s conducted by local Continuum of Care agencies. Those in Butte County found without shelter because of the Camp Fire, never homeless before, some said they had been in the past.

A new report by UC Berkeley shows many Californians don’t know how the state should tackle the housing shortage. The report by the college’s Institute of Governmental Studies shows 47 percent of Californians disagree on how to handle the situation, but in the Bay Area the majority said the state should get more involved. There’s a bill in the state Senate currently demanding cities build more housing and allow for more density. State planners say the state has a housing deficit of 3.5 million units because cities are not putting in more housing to meet state guidelines. Some in the Berkeley study said they thought the state should offer housing subsidies to help low- and moderate-income homebuyers. Others said there should be more multi-family development and still more said more rent control should be approved. Others say none of that would even solve the problem.

 

Reconstruction continues 2 years after the Redwood Valley Fire. The Daily Journal reports the group Mendocino-Rebuilding Our Community (M-ROC) told the Board of Supervisors there’s been a lot of progress financially and with reconstruction efforts to help 2017 fire survivors. The fire charred more than 36,000 acres and took down more than 500 structures. The board heard about progress made raising money to help survivors. They’ve been able to gather more than $5,600,000. They’re working to rebuild homes and distribute funds to survivors. They still have around $2,000,000 for rebuilding and relief. Some folks are still living at a campground near Lake Mendocino, trying to find homes. The group also told the board, in the future, they’ll include mental health treatment for survivors who may suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Success for the Mendocino County Economic Development & Finance Corporation’s future plans for the County. The organization telling the Board of Supervisors they continue to work on their Economic Development plan and Digital Infrastructure plan. They announced working on projects with the Sonoma-Mendocino Economic Development District, Workforce Alliance of the North Bay, Healthy Mendocino Poverty Action Team and the California Economic Summit. They also help businesses secure loans in both Mendocino and Lake Counties. They’re working on internet and broadband improvements too. Their plan for affordable high-speed internet for 98 percent of households by 2025.

Police in Clearlake on the lookout for whoever shot another man to death in an apparent drive by shooting at an RV park. 40 year old Steven Stone killed yesterday while walking at Trombetta’s Resort. Police say someone shot at Stone from a moving car and that they don’t think it was random, and that the suspect was targeting Stone. Cops got a call about gunshots fired after midnight last night and when cops got to the area, they found Stone down with a gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead at a hospital. Witnesses say a car drove on the main highway of the RV park, shot him and took off. Stone was with someone else when he was shot, they were uninjured.

The Skunk Train owners have successfully secured part of the Georgia-Pacific mill site. Mendocino Railway to expand their operation after acquiring 77 acres of the long vacant site. The Press Democrat reports the Mendocino Railway Vice President says it’s a deal they’ve been working on for years but have only just started talking about it publicly. Their deal is for the northern end of the 320 acres along the coast. The City of Fort Bragg has been working on zoning designations for the site, looking to add jobs, bring in tourism and potentially add housing and light industry and hospitality to the site. The Skunk Train owners looking to extend their trips up the coast toward Glass Beach with a new station one day.

A man from Cazadero on the run after a crash that injured his family, who he left behind. The CHP reports there was a head on crash Sunday night, west of Monte Rio. The mom and her three kids went to a hospital in ambulances after the crash on Highway 116. The newspaper reports the driver was identified as Monte Rio Wood. Cops say he split after the crash, leaving his passengers there with minor to moderate injuries. Firefighters found them sitting on the ground, a 30 year old woman, 8 month old girl and 6 and 10-year-old boys.

Settlement talks continue and delay the trial for a man accused of setting the Clayton Fire, among others. The Record Bee reports around the three year anniversary of the fire, Damin Pashilk of Clearlake is still in jail and has not been to trial. A continuance agreed to and Pashilk has so far pleaded not guilty and denied special allegations against him. At his preliminary hearing, several firefighters and investigators testified and it was found that Pashilk should be held over for a jury trial. There’s been several delays in the case already. He faces 19 felony arson charges for several fires in the summer of 2016, including the August Clayton Fire which burned nearly 4,000 acres and destroyed 180 homes.

Sen. Mike McGuire set to have a town hall discussion on the Great Redwood Trail. The Trail will take over an old railway and turn it into a path for hikers, cyclists and nature enthusiasts. It will stretch from the San Francisco Bay to Humboldt Bay. McGuire says several million dollars has already been secured for the work to establish the trail which he will cover in his Town Hall this Saturday, June 22nd at 10:30 a.m. at the Ukiah Valley Conference Center. McGuire says the 300 mile long track will be an economic driver for the rural North Coast communities it goes thru and will attract hundreds of thousands of locals and visitors to hike the “spectacular landscape and inject needed funds into the greater North Coast region.”

Possible power outages this summer during fire weather events so a community meeting’s being hosted to update residents in Middletown. Lake Co News reports the South Lake County Fire Protection District and Pacific Gas and Electric hosting the community meeting this Saturday at 10 a.m. at Middletown Fire Station 60 on Highway 175. The Cal Fire Battalion Chief says PG&E is presenting its plans at the meeting for public safety power shutoffs if needed. There will also be vendors on hand with solar power equipment and generators for those interested.

Another phone scam reported by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office. The agency and the Superior Court reports getting calls from people who got robocalls telling the person answering the call they have outstanding arrest warrants and they need to stay on the line. Then someone asks them for their Social Security number, something the Sheriff’s Office or Court would never do. The Sheriff’s Dept. says if you get a call like this, not to act on it. They also say they’re investigating the reports as fraud.

More vandalism to report, this time in Lakeport. Yesterday we reported on vandals hitting a neighborhood in Redwood Valley. Now it’s at Clear Lake High, where police say yesterday morning there was vandalism to the high school gym’s basketball hoops.  Cops say one of the hoops was totally destroyed over the weekend after it was moved for work to be done on it last week. Yesterday it was found to be broken.  The school staff says there are several people who have keys to the gymnasium without the school’s consent, and they think one or more people were the cause of the damage.

One of the two men accused in the deaths of 36 people after a fire broke out at a warehouse in Oakland says nobody was really in charge. Max Harris testified yesterday that all who lived at the Ghost Ship warehouse were friends and there was monthly music and art showcases. His lawyers say he’s being treated as a scapegoat for the fire where he lived. He says he was not involved in organizing the concert that was happening when the fire broke out and said there were monthly concerts before he ever moved into the space. He said the electrical system wasn’t hooked up right and was illegally put together. He and Derick Almena, the master tenant of the space, are accused in the 36 deaths. Harris called him a friend and artistic mentor. They face up to 36 years each if found guilty on all counts.

Part of Highway 101 had to be shut down after a trailer stacked with mattresses crashed near Willits. It happened early this morning around mile marker 53.7 north of Willits. The CHP closed the entire highway there with traffic stopped for a time at Ryan Creek Road. It was about 2.5 hours later that the road finally opened, but only to one way traffic, then about an hour after that it was totally reopened. No word why the trailer crashed.

A heat advisory has been issued for Lake County with temps topping the century mark. The National Weather Service forecasting hotter-than-normal temperatures. The advisory in effect until 10 p.m. tonight. It means there could be a prolonged period of hot temperatures today and warns those in sensitive groups to high temperatures to be careful. It’s going to be about 10 to 15 degrees hotter than normal and it could last thru the middle of the week, with its peak today. Temperatures between 100 and 105 degrees are expected in some areas, Lake County should hit the low to high 90s and Ukiah, in Mendocino County is expected to hit 105.

The poultry division at the Lake County Fair is canceled due to a Newcastle disease outbreak in Southern California. Lake Co News reports there’s a confirmed case in the Bay Area so the Lake County Fair’s Junior Livestock Committee decided to cancel the poultry show. Lake Co News reports the viral disease is contagious and fatal, hitting the respiratory, nervous and digestive systems of birds and poultry. And apparently some of them die without any sign of why. It is however not a food safety concern; no human cases of Newcastle disease have been reported before from anyone eating poultry products. There have been rare cases of humans getting infected after working with poultry, but it was only mild symptoms like conjunctivitis.