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A teenager from Guerneville whose was found dead in the back seat of a car after a minor DUI crash last December probably died from an overdose. That’s the word from police who reported to the scene of the crash. There they found 14 year old Yadhira Carrillo Guzman unresponsive in the back seat of a crashed car. Her 16-year-old friend’s Toyota Camry had been involved in a hit and run crash. The 14 year old was found unconscious and she wasn’t breathing. They could not revive her. The Sonoma County Coroner’s office says the death investigation is not over, but toxicology results showed booze and fentanyl in Carrillo Guzman’s system. Now the investigation begins into how she got a hold of such powerful drugs. The teen driver was arrested on suspicion of misdemeanor DUI and hit-and-run.

One of the managers of the state’s office on AIDS is accused of embezzling $2 million from the agency that fights the disease. 45 year old Schenelle Flores of Sacramento has pleaded not guilty to wire fraud. She’s accused of working with up to five others, moving money out of the Department of Public Health for the Office of AIDS. She apparently worked for a company with a state contract. She’s accused of “false statements, representations, promises and half-truths” for using corporate expense money for gift cards the agency used as patient incentives, and debit cards for personal purchases, like tickets to sports games, concert tickets, travel and payments to family and friends. She faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.

A public hearing’s been held on the massive unemployment fraud in the state. Lawmakers questioning top officials from the Governor’s administration about why legitimate claims were somehow blocked, but billions of dollars went to fraudsters. The public hearing was held yesterday after two audits of the unemployment agency. Some of the testimony included people needing to live in their cars during the pandemic because they never had their claims paid. The department head promised lawmakers they’d be prepared moving forward, but not a whole lot more. The Employment Development Department has processed over 19 million claims and paid more than $114 billion in benefits since the pandemic started, a large chunk paid out to scammers.

A press conference is being held by the Mendocino County Sheriff on a missing persons case. Sheriff Matt Kendall and the FBI are jointly hosting the “Facebook Live” event tomorrow morning at 11:30 A.M. regarding the disappearance of Khadijah Britton of the Round Valley Indian Tribes. Khadijah vanished three years ago from Covelo. There have been numerous searches for her. Her family says she was last seen being shoved into a car by her former boyfriend Neggie Fallis. There’s a $10,000 reward leading to any information in the case. The Sheriff says the investigation is still active and unsolved. They plan to update the public on the latest info in the cold case. They will take questions even though it’s a livestream event.

The Lake County Public Health Office says they’re starting to take vaccination appointments for those 65 or older. They have a limited vaccine supply so they will have few appointments, but say they will be getting more vaccines soon and will ramp up the appointment availability soon.  You can make an appointment online at the public heath department’s website or call. But they say not to call if you see on the website that all the appointments have been filled. They will be checking ID’s and say please not to make an appointment unless you meet the criteria because they will turn you away. And not to show up without an appointment either.  

http://health.co.lake.ca.us/Coronavirus/Vaccines.htm or call 707-993-4644. You can also ask any vaccine questions by calling 211 or texting “covid19” to 211-211.  Or visit http://health.co.lake.ca.us/Coronavirus/Vaccines.htm

A family who’s neighbor had some concerns about them keeping a couple of goats on their property in Ukiah wins. The Daily Journal reports a hearing officer, William Finnegan, hired to hear administrative appeals by the city said Ruth Van Antwerp had no standing and the family could keep their pet goats. She filed an appeal with the city about her neighbor’s pets, wanting them out of her and her pets view, and to make sure they were kept warm, dry and safe, which she says were not on the permit. The city council had approved of a new permitting process last year for people to keep livestock on their properties. Angel Schramer applied for a permit for her goats, which was approved. The appeals officer said he didn’t find the animals were a nuisance and that Antwerp’s other requests were not in the intended jurisdiction of the permitting process.

Lake County is forming a new ethics committee to decide who gets the COVID19 vaccinations first. They’re work with the Public Health Officer, Dr. Gary Pace in an advisory role. Pace has the final say on the tiers who get vaccinated, but the county administrative officer says it’ll be based on what other counties do too. Dr. Pace says the demand is outpacing the supply so he’s prioritizing the most vulnerable people and school staff, so schools can reopen sooner. The ethics committee will include those from Latino and Native American communities, a hospital, a primary care clinic, the agricultural industry, and the business community, and one member of the public at large.

The Blue Ribbon Committee in Lakeport that works to keep Clear Lake clean has sent a letter to the state so it can use grant money it received to get to work. The committee presented to the city council this week on the projects they intend to get done this year after requests last year. The committee asking the Governor for $6.5 million to help with the projects that’ll help monitor the lake. The city council also discussed applying for a COVID- 19 Community Development Block Grant to get a new heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system for the Silveira Community Center and for economic development activities in the city. The request after a survey of residents agreed to use the money on the Community Center.

79 local businesses in Lake County are getting a piece of the state’s $1 billion Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program. The money comes by way of the Lake County CARES Small Business Assistance Grant Program. Some of the businesses who got the grant money will use it on bare necessities, like paying their rent. Others for outdoor dining needs, like heaters or seating. The grants went to lodging, restaurants, retailers, salons, the auto/boat industries, wineries, agriculture, construction, gym, technology, brewery/bar, childcare and healthcare. The businesses in the towns of Lakeport, Clearlake, Kelseyville, Middletown, Upper Lake, Cobb, Clearlake Oaks and Hidden Valley Lake.

Public Health Officials trying to stay ahead of the rocky rollout of the COVID19 vaccine. The Sonoma County Public Health Officer asking local healthcare providers to help the county run things smoother.  The Press Democrat reports the county’s director of health services has asked administrators at Kaiser Permanente, Providence St. Joseph Health and Sutter Health to work with the county on vaccinations and let officials know what their daily vaccination data is as it happens. They’re also asking healthcare providers to give the vaccine to others not in their network and follow the priority tiers. That means healthcare workers, then local residents 75 years of age and older. The Governor said 65 and older, but the county says they don’t have enough shots yet for that. About 32,000 residents have received their first shots.

A CVS Pharmacy in Sonoma has begun to offer the vaccine. One of the chains locations in nearly a dozen states starts in one week from today. The supply comes directly from the federal government, not the state. It’s through a pharmacy partnership program providing about 250,000 total doses. Calif. is getting nearly 82,000 doses. You’ve got to be in the right tier though to get the shot at CVS and register in advance right on the CVS website. There are also other Bay Area locations administering doses in San Francisco and Sunnyvale and the city of Eureka will also get some doses.

The Governor says he thinks schools can reopen before every teacher gets a vaccine if the right safety protocols are in place. But teachers’ unions, say, not so fast. United Teachers Los Angeles for example says vaccines should be a prerequisite before in person learning starts again. The Governor had a press conference on the pandemic yesterday saying there’s low transmission in schools. He says he would love everyone in the state to get inoculated, who wants to, echoing what the CDC head is saying. That schools can safely reopen even if all teachers are not vaccinated and that a vaccine is not a prerequisite for safely reopening schools. But the CDC says other measures need to be in place to slow community transmission, including limiting certain activities like indoor sports.

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