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A man the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Department was on the lookout for in Fort Bragg has been caught. The Sheriff posted on his Facebook page last night they found Robert Brockway in connection to a murder. They had been searching for him yesterday and said he may have been in possession of several knives and should be considered armed and dangerous. They also put out a reverse 911 telling residents they should shelter in place, but then revoked it. The Facebook post says Brockway will be booked on murder charges and that they’d release more info today.

A fire burning off Highway 101 south of the Willits bypass has been quickly stomped out.  The fire after 7 pm last night burned about a ½ acre but was contained in about a half hour. Mendo Fever reported last night firefighters on the scene about 7-15 and were making good progress on the fire. They say they think it caused by a vehicle dragging a chain that sparked the fire, but they didn’t identify the car or say if they found it.

The California insurance commissioner coming down hard on insurance companies who drop coverage or increase the rates of those in fire prone areas. A hearing held by Commissioner Ricardo Lara saying he’s going to be holding companies accountable for dropping policies and raising yearly premiums. In his online meeting he says he’s heard stories from people who’ve lost all worldly belongings and how frustrating it was and unfathomable to lose their insurance. He says insurance companies will have to do more about this and show how they’re scoring risk on property owners, and what they can do to reduce that risk. Last year he fought for homeowners in Sonoma County so they didn’t lose their insurance after the Kincade Fire, but that protection ends next week.

The amount of people who have died from COVID in the state is still rising, reaching just about 17,000. The state has had more cases than any other, over 880,000 cases. Calif. has nearly twice as many cases as New York, but New York has had more deaths. But Calif. is seeing about a third the amount of deaths since a big surge over the summer when there were as many as 150 dying every day. But it looks like cases are flattening in Calif with the last seven day average of new cases below 3,000, with a testing positivity rate of about 2.5% for the last two weeks. Still officials are concerned ahead of Halloween, Dia de los Muertos and of course Thanksgiving next month.

Power may still be shut off to residents in 19 counties. Lake Co News reports there could be up to 50,000 customers in the dark and almost 1,000 Lake County customers. None in Mendo though. The company has begun to inform customers about the possible public safety power shutoff which would be tomorrow night, depending on the wind. Other surrounding counties include Contra Costa, Glenn, Humboldt, Napa,  Sonoma, Trinity and Yolo. Out of the 963 customers in Lake, 69 are Medical Baseline. The power downs are expected mostly in Clearlake Oaks, Cobb, Lower Lake and Middletown. If it happens, the company says it will mostly likely be Thursday between 2 and 6 a.m. lasting until 10 p.m. Friday.

A special meeting on COVID-19 recovery is being held in Lakeport by the Economic Development Advisory Committee. The zoom and telephone meeting tomorrow afternoon at 4 p.m. is open to the public. The special meeting to continue ongoing pandemic response discussions. They will assign focus groups by industry cluster and finish up a draft invitation, then set the first focus group. Lake Co News reports the group is made up of folks working for a strong and positive Lakeport business community and is a liaison between the city and the community on goals, activities and progress of Lakeport’s economic and business programs.

A program by the CHP aims to keep teen drivers safe. The CHP campaign to reduce distracted teen driving. They’re working with Impact Teen Drivers to teach positive habits while behind the wheel. Statistics say almost six teen drivers get into car accidents daily in the United States. And ten percent of drivers between 15 to 19 that were involved in deadly crashes were distracted, and that 100 percent of those crashes were preventable. Virtual classes will be held due to the pandemic at schools and as part of community events across the state. For free safe driving resources in English or Spanish, please visit www.ImpactTeenDrivers.org.

The Gov. says if the state’s lucky it will have a very limited supply of any COVID-19 vaccine approved by the Food and Drug Administration by November or December. Gov. Gavin Newsom says he thinks the state will get 1 to 2 million doses in the first round which is just enough to vaccinate those working in the health care system. He says beyond that, a major effort, like the flu shot, where you could go to your local pharmacy for a vaccine is probably not happening until next year. He says the state also has a new task force made up of about a dozen scientists who will do an independent medical review to suss out the safety of any FDA-approved vaccine before administering it to Californians.

Senator Mike McGuire hosted an online meeting with the Gov. where hundreds gathered to talk about homelessness in rural communities. Gov. Newsom updated the 300 or so attendees about the fifth round of Project Homekey awards of nearly $31 million dollars. The last round, the Gov. says, helped around 22,000 people since April, calling it “a phenomenal success” calling it a “pathway out of poverty.” So far the state has distributed all of the Homekey funding to local jurisdictions, ahead of schedule. More than $627 million went to 45 applicants and 71 projects.

New board members are needed by the Lucerne Town Hall Advisory Council. They’re reaching out to residents of the town to get involved in the five member board who work with the community to make sure their voice is heard. They have meetings once a month on the third Thursday at 7 PM, but during the pandemic, they’ve had conference calls or Google Hangout meetings. Otherwise the in person meetings are held at the Lucerne Alpine Senior Center.

Applications for the Lucerne Area Town Hall are located in the Clerk’s office at 255 N. Forbes Street in Lakeport or online at: https://www.lakecountyca.gov/Assets/Departments/ BOS/docs/BoardApp.pdf

Completed applications should be submitted to Supervisor Crandell at: eddie. crandell@lakecountyca. gov.

Curbside Leaf Collection is scheduled. They’ll be coming around from Nov. 9-20. So you can just put your extra bags/cans of leaves (up to seven extra) at your curb on whatever your normal collection day is. They also remind, it’s illegal to blow leaves onto the streets because, it not only clogs up the streetsweeper and causes expensive breakdowns, but extra leaves can clog storm drains and lead to flooding.

There hasn’t been much forward movement on the August Complex in a while and it’s now 91% contained. Matters not though because we still have quite a few evacuation orders and warnings in place in Mendocino County. The West Zone was totally contained days ago, but crews are working to shore up the last uncontained line of the fire now… that’s near Bradburn Creek and the Coffee Pot area. It helped firefighters that there was higher humidity and calm winds, but that could change as a Red Flag Warning is set to hit various areas of Northern Calif. But yesterday the weather favored the containment line in the Ruth Lake area, firefighters working there with homeowners to get to fire weakened trees.  They’re also assessing damage on the Six Rivers National Forest for a long-term rehabilitation plan. There were higher winds in the Northeast zone of the fire and unburned fuel did bring a lot of smoke, but no threat to containment lines. The fire is staying within its own scar.

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