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***FORT BRAGG*** There has been an outbreak of COVID-19 in a Fort Bragg children’s daycare. If you have close ties to any daycare in Fort Bragg, we recommend that you get tested if possible. Contact tracing is underway.

Drive-Thru COVID-19 Testing in Fort Bragg:
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 27TH, 2020
MENDOCINO COAST CLINIC
205 SOUTH STREET, 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM

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Power’s being restored to those across Northern Calif. who were impacted by the latest public safety power shutoffs. The utility company, PG&E turned the power off for hundreds of thousands of people in over 30 counties because of a red flag warning across the state. Lake and Mendocino were included in the shutoffs, under 1,000 customers in Mendocino County and 21,621 customers in Lake. As of last night PG&E started to restore power after an all clear was called. They said everyone would have their power back on by tonight at 10 p.m. The company has a lookup tool online to see when each area would be powered back on. Winds of 75 miles an hour in Sonoma County with a gust reported at 89 miles an hour, in Lake, wind speeds were 57 miles an hour, the second fastest in the state, and for gusts recorded at 71 miles per hour.

A man from Clearlake Oaks has been arrested in connection to two rapes last week. As we reported last night Clearlake Police were searching for 34 year old Romondis Tyron Thompson. They say it took less than 2 hours to find him after putting out a report they needed help finding him. He goes by the name “Romeo Thompson” on Facebook and was reported to have been contacting women online. One of his victims was reportedly a minor though. He was seen yesterday morning and Clearlake Police officers chased him down and stopped him when he tried getting out of the car and running. He’s charged with obstruction, resisting a peace officer, false imprisonment and a host of other charges related to the alleged rapes. He’s held on $1 million.

The city of Lakeport looking for civic minded residents to fill some spots on local commissions and committees. Applications being accepted for the Lakeport Economic Development Advisory Committee for anyone living, working, shopping, or otherwise doing business in the city. You can find an application on the city’s website. The committee has seven people on it who are appointed by the city council and serve two years. The positions would start in January and are voluntary. They come up with ideas and strategies to promote economic development through business retention, recruitment, attraction and creation.

A ballot measure that would make so-called gig workers independent contractors instead of employees is not faring well so far. UC Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies has a new poll out a week ahead of the election showing even though Uber and Lyft has spent a bundle on the ballot measure, so far it won’t meet the 50% plus one voter threshold to pass. The survey also looked at another initiative to change how the state taxes commercial property, and another on rent control, and still one more to bring back affirmative action. The survey shows each of the propositions look to be headed for defeat.

CSU campuses report better enrollment even though much of higher education is being done online these days. A new report on enrollment on California State University campuses showed gains in enrollment, going against a nationwide trend. 12 of 23 of the CSU campuses said they had gains, others impacted hard by coronavirus were still reporting high enrollments including Cal Poly Pomona, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Cal State Fullerton, CSU Dominguez Hills and Cal State Long Beach. Undergrad enrollment is down about 4% nationwide.

It looks like the unemployment claim backlog may be getting better. But a new report says there are still one million cases backlogged by the state Employment Development Department. There was a backlog of nearly 2 million claims after the pandemic first triggered business closures in Calif. A new high-tech verification tool was supposed to help the state agency catch up with claims is apparently starting to work. The week ending Sept. 30th the latest the dept. has released shows a backlog still of more than 1.5 million workers had not had their claim processed, then the following week it was 1.3 million, and the week ending Oct. 14th showed 1.2 million were still awaiting processing of their claim.

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. has a plan for residential customers to pay less in utility costs than small businesses and farmers. The company says they support the idea of changing their pricing scheme after a recent study showed the way they balance rates was lopsided. The company says the plan won’t affect how much they get from customers, but it will rebalance their costs. The California Public Utilities Commission recommended the discount for residential customers. Last summer residential customers paid more than agricultural customers.

The Mendocino County Elections office with some reminders to folks for the historic upcoming election. A reminder, if you have not received your mail in ballot to call. If you don’t plan to vote in person, which you are allowed to do, you can come to the polls without a vote by mail ballot and envelope, but you will have to vote provisionally and you will get a “Special Pink” envelope which is processed separately from regular ballots. If you are not registered to vote, you can register at the polls on Election Day and vote provisionally too. Polling Locations are open on Election Day Only – The Drop Box Locations at the City of Willits, City of Fort Bragg, the City of Point Arena and the County Admin Building in Ukiah 24/7. For questions or additional information please contact the Election / County Clerk’s Office by calling 707 234-6819.

The August Complex Fire is still crawling along, barely moving, with a little more containment. The fire’s been burning for over 2 months and has burned over a million acres. The South Zone of the fire did get some action yesterday due to the red flag weather and winds of up to 40 mph at times. Humidity dipped into the single digits, dropping as low as 1% at Mendocino Pass. The extremely dry air mass over the fire was expected to continue until about 5 p.m. tonight. The Forest Service brought in more firefighters to the South Zone to take out hazard trees, repair lines in priority areas and breaking down berms near containment lines. The South Zone has burned just under 500k acres alone and is 90% contained. The fire area not contained is east of Covelo in the Hellhole Canyon which is steep, dangerous terrain and not safe for firefighters to engage directly with the fire. The August Complex is 93% contained.

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