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Just in case… PG&E along with the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority hosted a Live Action Gas Drill along with various Mendocino County agencies. It was last week the proactive drill took place after “an increase in third parties hitting gas lines”. The fire agency and utility company decided on the “joint safety exercise in Ukiah to simulate the coordination during an emergency event involving natural gas, including dig-ins to gas pipelines or gas leaks.” PG&E said they would also heavily promote using the 811-telephone service, which is free, to inform those digging lines ahead of time, what they might dig into. The training was last Tuesday, Nov. 8th. They had a person who was made up to look like a burn victim on hand too. There were nearly 50 PG&E employees working with personnel from UVFA, Little Lake Fire, Cal Fire and the Ukiah Police Department during the exercise.

The Clearlake Chief of Police Andrew White is leaving town for a new position. White is taking the chief position in the City of Martinez. He’s been in Clearlake for about 4 years after 16 in Suisun City. The City Manager Alan Flora says he was proud of the impact Chief White had during his time leading the agency, which enabled the office to excel in a way that was transformational. For his part White said it was an honor to lead the department, making Clearlake a cleaner, safer city. He added that he’s confident the department will continue its good work after his departure. There will be a community reception for Chief White next month. Lt. Tim Hobbs will be sworn in as Acting Police Chief until the city finds a permanent replacement for White who was making upwards of $200,000 in pay and benefits/year.

There’s a major shortage of specialist doctors in northwest California forcing patients to drive long distances for care or not getting the help they need at all. In the town of Redding in Shasta County, they only have Neonatal Intensive Care between Sacramento and Medford, Oregon. Dr. Paul Davis is chief of medicine for the Redding Rancheria Tribal Health System.

:14 “I’d like to hire two family doctors today, if I could. Pretty much if I have a specialty need for almost any child, they have to go to UC Davis. We really need rheumatologists, neurologists, orthopedics, internists and primary care.”

Tag: Many patients have to drive hours to see a specialist, and that’s a particular challenge in a part of the world where many patients struggle to afford transportation or child care.

Second Cut: Doreen Bradshaw is executive director of the Health Alliance of Northern California, which works with 30 clinics for primary care in rural and frontier areas. She says more than one-third of Shasta County residents are on Medi-Cal, which makes it harder to sustain a private medical practice.

:09 “We have high numbers of Medi-Cal patients, which also have low Medi-Cal reimbursement rates. And so, for physicians, it’s hard to cover costs.”

Third Cut: Dr. Dean Germano with the nonprofit Shasta Community Health Center estimates Shasta County alone has a shortage of about 70 doctors, and says the region’s deeply conservative social and political environment has also made it more difficult to attract and retain doctors, including specialists.

:14 “I think one of the biggest challenges is the physician or specialist’s consideration of whether this is a place they want to live. It’s important to remember that around 30% of physician specialists come from the international community, and many are people of color.”

Tag: Multiple efforts are underway to improve the situation. The pandemic ushered in a big expansion of telemedicine. The Shasta Health Assessment and Redesign Collaborative runs a website called “Shasta Health Rock Stars,” designed to attract medical professionals of all types and convince local students to pursue careers in medicine. And the U-C Davis family practice medical residency sends eight to 10 doctors to the North State area each year.

A couple of kids have been arrested in connection to a hit-and-run with an SUV into a parked car, then a garage. Police in Ukiah say the parked car, then crashed into the garage of a home. Police found the driver and passenger of the SUV were drinking before. The two girls, age 13 and 15 apparently ran from the scene of the crash, but residents followed them and informed police dispatch along the way. Police found the side door to a garage cracked open where they crashed. The people living there were home at the time. Police and a CHP officer checked the area, but then the homeowner found them in the garage. The driver went to Juvenile Hall and the passenger was turned over to a parent.

Mendocino County Supervisor John Hashak has an update for the community. On the Mendo Fever site a letter has been posted where Hashak says he’s thankful Measures O and P passed. Measure O, as you may recall, was on the ballot to infuse libraries with cash, while Measure P is to give more money to fire departments. Haskak says the passage of the measures will not increase the sales tax but rather redirect the Measure B Mental Health tax. He also thanked those running for seats in Willits on the School Board and updated on the tree mortality declaration of emergency he sponsored. He says that will bring attention, resources, and grant possibilities to the region after Lake, Napa, Sonoma have passed similar resolutions.

There are still several thousand ballots left to be processed in Mendocino County. The Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder Katrina Bartolomie says as part of the official canvass, like all other elections, they still have work to do. The county has over 17,000 Mail-In ballots to process and count, and 617 Provisional / Conditional ballots to review, process and count. They are still accepting ballots, which they have to by law, until tomorrow, which is one week after the general election. Bartolomie says as with past elections, they will have another update on their website, with the same numbers sent to the Secretary of State’s office, by or before next Tuesday. That’s two weeks to the day after the election. They also, have to by law, have completed the certification of the election within 30 days.

A woman from Ukiah helped out of a car crash with her four dogs after quite the ordeal. Apparently, some District 2 maintenance employees happened to be in the area when Tina Milberger crashed along State Route 32 November 2nd just before midnight. Milberger came off the road and went down a steep embankment, plunging 130 feet down near Susanville. She was also stuck in the vehicle, hanging upside down. But about 4 am the maintenance workers plowing snow nearby saw her car tracks and shined a bright light down and saw her, then she honked her horn and the pair called 911. Milberger was pulled up with a rope and pulley system with 3 of her 4 dogs. She was airlifted to a hospital in Red Bluff. The next day, a maintenance worker from Chester went out looking for the other dog, it was 3 days later, the pup was found.

The Sonoma Clean Power board of directors has given the green light to start work on a geothermal power supply for service territories of Mendocino and Sonoma Counties. The Geothermal Opportunity Zone, aka the GeoZone will be part of the strategy for the utility to start delivering clean energy to free to their customers who’ve been using fossil fuels when there’s not enough solar energy on the grid. The two counties joined with Sonoma Clean Power last year after approval by their boards of supervisors to establishing the GeoZone partnership. They just have to get the memorandum of understanding signed to start developing geothermal power using technologies that conserve water.

Police in Clearlake have been searching for a missing woman. They say it’s possible 34-year-old Angelina Trisha Fagundo was leaving Vacaville, headed back to Clearlake, but then disappeared. The missing woman is described as being 5 foot 10 inches tall and about 205 pounds with black hair and brown eyes. If you’ve seen her, police ask for your help, contacting them.

The Lake County Board of Supervisors gets a peek at the new county website at its next meeting. County staff will present the new site at the meeting tomorrow. The site is also expected to launch in the morning too. The board is also set to look over a nearly $450,000 bid for a new security system at the jail. R&B Electronics Electrica Contracting would be putting in a Tower Electronics Security System Upgrade.

A young man from Ukiah has been arrested for victimizing a former girlfriend. According to the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Dept., 19-year-old Kalub Piceno was at the woman’s home and physically assaulted her. She told Deputies Piceno struck her in the face with closed fists and bit one of her hands, causing injuries and pain. Deputies confirmed her injuries matched the story. The guy had left before they arrived, but after searching several locations, Piceno was found and arrested for Felony Domestic Violence Battery and held on $25,000.00 bail in the Mendocino County Jail.

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