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Still counting the ballots in Lake County with another update late yesterday. Really no change, per the Registrar of Voters office. Lake Co News reports the most closely watched race, District 5 of the Board of Supervisors shows Jessica Pyska still comfortably ahead of Bill Kearney. There are still thousands of ballots sent thru the postal service making their way though, the news site says it could take weeks to finalize. The elections office has 30 days to certify any election, but due to the pandemic ballots are being accepted up to 17 days after.

Sonoma County sits in the purple tier still and has been unable to reopen more businesses and allow others to be open longer hours. The Press Democrat reports there’s continuing Covid-19 infections, spreading through the community. The county has remained in the same tier since the end of August and is the only Bay Area county and one of the 10 remaining 58 Calif. counties still in the first phase of the state’s reopening plan. The average daily infection rate is 11.1 per 100,000 residents at the last data dump from the state. It has to have 8 or less per 100,000 people to move on to the red tier. The county’s Public Health Officer Dr. Sundari Mase says they have not met the two virus test positivity levels of 8% maximum each to move to the next tier.

Two people in Guerneville have been arrest on burglary charges during a traffic stop. Apparently a bunch of stuff was found in the car that had been swiped from two local schools when 26 year old Dylan Allain and 28 year old Charlotte Warren were stopped for an expired registration. Deputies stopped them Tuesday morning and after they found out the two were on probation for burglary, they searched the car and found a bunch of Chromebooks, musical instruments, cameras and computer accessories. The two booked into Sonoma County Jail on felony burglary, conspiracy and receiving known stolen property charges and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia.

A couple of counties have lost their current tier status and moved down a notch in the state’s reopening plan. The state’s Health and Human Services Director says there’s been spikes in cases and hospitalizations in recent weeks so Shasta County moved back to the “widespread” purple tier and Plumas County went from the highest tier of yellow or “minimal” to the second-highest “moderate” tier. Colusa County moved up to the orange tier, the only county to move ahead. Ghaly says he hopes Californians will stay vigilant as we near Thanksgiving with social distancing and mask-wearing.

Deputies head out to a marijuana farm robbery in progress in Willits. The Sheriff’s Office reports getting a call from someone who saw a van Monday where several people got out and started ripping off the farm. Deputies say though that the suspects were gone when they got there. They talked to some farm workers who were camping on the property and hear it was a minivan and a small sedan early Monday morning that drove to a big storage unit on the property, break into it and take out several boxes of processed marijuana, then they took off. Deputies say they stopped a man in a van, Christopher France of Willits and he and a female passenger were arrested. France was found in possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia. Later two others in the sedan were busted at a gas station. All have been booked into jail on various robbery and drug related charges.

Still work to be done on the South Zone of the August Complex Wildfire which started mid-August. The US Forest Service says they’ve not got the fire 97% contained, yesterday it was still 90% after weeks stuck there. This part of the massive gigafire has burned nearly 500,000 acres on its own. The fire smolders still in the Mendocino, Six Rivers and Shasta Trinity National Forests. The massive blaze has burned almost 1,032,650 acres and is 93 percent contained.  They’re working on suppression repair in the Sanhedrin Wilderness, in wild and scenic river corridors in the Mill Creek area, and in locations prone to landslides and look at full containment coming in a month after 4 months of continued burn.

A man in Covelo’s been arrested for the rape of a teenage girl. Mendocino County Deputies got a call about an ongoing assault of a 17 year old by a 31 year old man who’s identified as Kevin Johnson of Weott. Deputies say Johnson had repeatedly assaulted the teen started last year including getting her drunk and raping her. They say he was also sending her harmful materials. On October 30th the DA’s office filed an arrest warrant for Johnson for bail of $100,000 for Rape of Victim Prevented from Resisting by Any Intoxication, Distribution/Exhibition/Offers Harmful Matter to Minor and two sex crimes that are both felonies. Johnson was arrested by Humboldt and Mendocino Deputies in Weott.

Several new beautification projects have been approved by the Lakeport City Council. The Record Bee reports the work includes changes to the Lake Front Park Site Plan. The City Manager says the city council was okay with using $800,000 of general use funds for the work. Apparently the cost of the project went up, but even using this amount still leaves the city with about 70 percent of reserves untouched. Also at their latest meeting the council gave their approval to moving 20-minute parking spaces along Park Street to Second Street for better access to the main entrance of City Hall and the utility payment drop-box. 

More info coming on yearly standardized tests. The State Board of Education is voting to decide if they should change the way the tests are given for the Smarter Balanced tests in math and English. It comes after schools basically closed in the midst of testing because of the pandemic. The U.S. Department of Education was allowing states to get a waiver so they didn’t have to conduct the testing required by the Every Student Succeeds Act. But in Sept. the federal government said it expected to hear from states on standardized testing even as many students continued distance learning. Some decisions are reportedly forthcoming this week.

Little movement in the race for Ukiah City Council. Out of seven candidates for two spots, it looks like the top 3 vote getters are still ahead. Incumbent councilmember Douglas Crane still has the lead with 1,286 votes, then it’s Stephen Scalmanini with 1,227 votes, and Josefina Duenas with 1,148 votes. In the District 2 Supervisors race Maureen ‘Mo’ Mulheren had a comfortable lead 2,484 votes, or 58.4 percent, with some provisional ballots not yet counted. Same for Glenn McGourty who was far ahead on election night for the 1st District Board of Supervisors seat. He’s got nearly 61% of the vote still. The county has 30 days to canvas then certify the results.

A popular reality TV show is coming to Mendocino County. American Pickers is back next month. The producers say they’re looking for interesting characters with interesting items through word of mouth. They also say they’re being safe with all that’s happening with the virus and take the pandemic very seriously. Producers say they’ll be following all guidelines and protocols for safe filming as outlined locally. They also say they’ll re-schedule if necessary if there are changing conditions. Those interested should call 855-OLD-RUST (653-7878), or email:

An attempted traffic stop of a guy on a motorcycle carrying a passenger ends up in a high speed chase with speeds of more than 110 MPH. The California Highway Patrol finally stopped the driver and both on the bike were arrested. A chopper was also called by the CHP to help with the chase. The motorcycle finally caught near Laytonville, where the driver continued going at 60-100 MPH.  The driver, Steven Ramier and his passenger Malia Linde were found with drugs and drug paraphernalia.

Clearlake getting more housing if the city council gives a property buy a thumbs up. The City Council poised to vote on buying property in a closed session tonight. The property on Burns Valley Rd for housing, commercial and recreational uses. The council is also set to talk about a letter of intent to sell part of Redbud Park for a hotel development project too.  One Shot Mining Co. is reportedly selling the property the city wants to use for the housing project and possible other uses too. The meeting tonight is virtual due to the continued pandemic.

Insurance companies in California will not be allowed to cancel property insurance for at least a year for those who were impacted by either the Glass or LNU Lightning Complex fires. The Insurance Commissioner putting a moratorium in place so that homeowner policies may not be canceled, like he did a year ago for victims of the 2019 Kincade fire. That period ended Oct. 25th. So for this time around, over 2.1 million California policyholders, or about 18% of the state’s homeowner insurance market will be protected for a year. Lara says it gives millions of Californians breathing room. For the LNU Lightning Complex the moratorium is retroactive to Aug. 18th and September 28th for the Glass Fire.

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