PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
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Chris Daley

New video targets StemExpress

A small movement is building in El Dorado County to shut down StemExpress after a series of videos were released alleging that Planned Parenthood was illegally selling fetal body parts and tissues to the Placerville biomedical company. Mark E. Smith from Garden Valley demanded that the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors “revoke the firm’s business license” during […]

Order blocks secret StemExpress video

 Los Angeles District Court Judge Joanne O’Donnel signed a temporary restraining order July 28 that prevents the anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress from releasing an undercover video of a dinner meeting between StemExpress CEO Cate Dyer, other company officials and people pretending to be prospective customers from a biological materials procurement firm. The meeting […]

Top state official meets with anti-secession group

Keep it California, the organization formed to combat a move to secede from California by proponents of the so-called State of Jefferson, met with the California State Senate’s President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon earlier this month. Local KIC activists were invited to meet privately with de Leon to share concerns and offer recommendations that […]

County to buy more land for rare plants

Pronouncing the names of El Dorado County’s rare plant species almost requires a degree in Latin and botany. Found in the county’s Pine Hill Preserve, several of the species are considered rare because they are only found in a very specific and ancient kind of environment known as gabbro soil. Eight of them, in fact, […]

County updating General Plan’s biological policies

Public hearings will be set El Dorado County’s 2006 Oak Woodlands Management Plan, newly re-christened as the Oak Resources Management Plan, is once again getting a makeover. Developed by the Long Range Planning Division of the Community Development Agency, the biological policy update project’s new resolution of intention was presented by Principal Planner Shawna Purvines at the […]

The Weekly Daley: Trumping the chumps

“EARTHQUAKE virtually wipes California off the map. Oregon, Washington next?” “Yawn! Did you hear what Donald Trump called Lindsey Graham? A lightweight and an idiot who in the private sector would be a poor man.” “TERRORISTS blow up Switzerland’s cheese and chocolate reserves. Experts claim it will take 20 years to recover.” “Boring! Trump said […]

StemExpress responds to backlash

Between last week’s and this week’s “video revelations” about the sale of aborted fetal body parts by Planned Parenthood, Placerville’s StemExpress founder and CEO Cate Dyer forwarded her company’s prepared statement on the issue to the Mountain Democrat. Dyer prefaced the statement by noting that, “StemExpress has never worked with Deborah Nucatola or the Planned […]

Correction

Monday’s article about the county’s new “early separation incentive” failed to include one department’s roster of early retirees. The Board of Supervisors approved one of its own staff members among the 16 who will receive the incentive.

RCRC backs biomass industry revival

The July 2 edition of Rural County Representatives of California’s newsletter, The Barbed Wire, notes that the current chair of the organization, Sierra County Supervisor Lee Adams, recently testified for RCRC in support of Assembly Bill 590, which would tap into state Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund monies to help revive California’s biomass industry infrastructure. The […]

16 county employees retire early

The El Dorado County Board of Supervisors approved a proposal that allows 16 employees to take an “early separation incentive” to leave county service earlier than they might have otherwise. The early separation program, similar to those in other jurisdictions, was devised by the Chief Administrative Office, Risk Management Division, and County Counsel as a […]

StemExpress takes heat from video

Local biotech firm StemExpress based in Placerville is at the center of a firestorm since the release of allegations that it and similar research companies have been buying aborted fetal body parts from Planned Parenthood affiliates. The charges were publicized by an undercover video allegedly showing a luncheon conversation between Planned Parenthood Head of Medical […]

The Weekly Daley: The Iran deal makes for strange bedfellows

Saudi Arabia, one of our staunchest allies in the Middle East, doesn’t like the deal the United States and other world powers have cooked up with Iran. Many on the right bitterly complain that we have poked the Saudis in the eye with a sharp stick just as we’ve done to our other staunchest Middle East […]

Looks like Gaines in District 1 race

California Assemblywoman Beth Gaines, currently representing District 6 has not officially announced that she will seek the District 1 seat on the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors; however, a marquee announcement in downtown Placerville and the fact that Gaines has changed her address strongly indicate Supervisor Ron Mikulaco will have some competition next year. Her Assembly Chief […]

New grand jury sworn in

The Honorable Dylan Sullivan presided over the swearing in of El Dorado County’s 2015-16 Grand Jury and filed the formal notice June 25. This year’s jury includes the following, plus several alternate members: Kenneth Cater, Richard Coffin, Hal Erpenbeck, Dan Kelly, James Kern, Peter Marty, Thomas Orth, Jeanne Ott, Roger Pickler, Rodney Pimental, Debbie Rice, Julie Ryan, Jan Sawyer, Thomas Simpson, George Turnboo, Richard White, Gatha Willyard, Laura Anne Winston and Colleen […]

The Weekly Daley: Terror on the 4th of July

The terror that wasn’t became the terror that was. We were warned well in advance that the 4th of July was a prime time for prospective terrorists to do their evil works. The FBI, law enforcement and emergency agencies were told to be on highest alert before and during the holiday. The Department of Homeland Security described […]

County’s roads crumble

Supes support SB 16 Anticipating a flow of new money for road repair and past-due maintenance over the next five years, El Dorado County’s Board of Supervisors signed and sent a letter to State Sen. Jim Beall in support of his Senate Bill 16. The bill is intended to particularly address a chronic and severe […]

Holiday terror alert: Law enforcement always prepared

No increased threat for El Dorado county Security agencies all around the country are in a heightened state of alert as the July 4th holiday approaches. A number of news organizations report that their sources have described a high, even the “highest ever terror alert,” since 9/11. The FBI has set up command posts throughout the nation […]

The Weekly Daley: Ain’t love grand!

“I’m in love with at least one if not two or more convicted murderers. He and/or they are who I want to spend the rest of my life with, maybe have his/their baby or babies one day. We’ll be so happy. Ain’t love grand! But first I have to help them bust out of prison, […]

Anti-terrorism authority renewed

Supervisors renewed a 2003 authorization to create an Anti-Terrorism Approval Body (Approval Authority) during their June 23 meeting. The entity, whose purpose is to distribute Federal Emergency Management Agency grant funds, includes representatives from five county emergency response agencies. In addition to the Sheriff’s Department, the approval body includes Placerville and South Lake Tahoe police […]

The weekly Daley: Excuse me! What?

Think you’ve heard it all? I kind of thought I’d heard it all until Wednesday morning. While driving to work I heard on NPR that state Attorney General Kamala Harris was hoping not to have to deal with a proposition titled the “Sodomite Suppression Act.” Excuse me! What? She was hoping a judge would grant […]

El Dorado County fee structure debate begins

El Dorado County supervisors got a first look at the county’s fee structure and policies study at their June 23 meeting. Prepared and presented by staff from the Community Development Agency, the fee study draft recommends a number of changes and perhaps consolidations of current fees for services. Cost for service lies at the heart […]

Grand Jury calls for familiar charter reforms

The El Dorado County Charter should be scrapped at best or substantially amended, according to the Grand Jury report issued June 16. Tacking on to Grand Jury recommendations from 2008-09 and 2013-14 reports, the latest report recommends in even stronger language the repeal or heavy amending of the charter. “The Grand Jury found that the structure of government […]

Supervisor Novasel responds to conflict questions

El Dorado County District 5 Supervisor Sue Novasel responded to allegations contained in a letter to the editor in the June 12 Mountain Democrat. Following a truncated Board of Supervisors meeting June 16, Novasel said that at the beginning of her term, she gave County Counsel Robyn Drivon an extensive list of items that could […]

The weekly Daley: More nuts with guns

Like clockwork, yet another young man turns up with a gun and a killer agenda, and another nine people are dead because they went to an event at their church in Charleston, S.C. Wednesday night. Dylann Roof allegedly went to the same event and while there, it is alleged that he shot and killed nine […]

Knorr out as CAO

Interim El Dorado County Chief Administrative Officer Pamela Knorr will no longer hold the  CAO title, effective June 29, and will return to her original appointment as the county’s full-time Human Resources director. The Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 to move Knorr back to her HR position and announced the appointment of Larry T. Combs […]

County tries to woo UC Davis; no first date pending

El Dorado County Treasurer-Tax Collector Cherie Raffety pitched an idea to the Board of Supervisors back in March. How about initiating a plan to convince a four-year college, public or private, to locate a campus in the county? Raffety said she had been working on the idea for some time and thought it was a […]

Supervisors set priorities for public parks

Recognizing parks as an asset to the community, the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors last week directed staff to establish a parks capital improvement program and begin an annual campgrounds inspection program. El Dorado County owns and maintains four developed parks for the public’s recreational use — Henningsen-Lotus Park in the Coloma-Lotus valley, Pioneer Park in the Fair Play-Somerset […]

The Weekly Daley: Funny you should say that

“Openers Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay established absolute dominance as they racked up 239 without loss for India against Bangladesh on day one of the lone test on Wednesday. Dhawan was not out on 150 and Vijay on 89 when bails were drawn for bad light, after 34 overs were lost after lunch to heavy […]

BOS marathon ends with 4-1 vote for budget

El Dorado County Supervisors started early and stayed late last week during four days of hearings, revisions and recalculations to the “Recommended Budget” presented by Chief Administrative Officer Pamela Knorr. State law requires that the county approve a recommended budget on or before June 30 each year, and a final or “Adopted Budget” on or […]

The weekly Daley: Is it or is it not?

I’m following up on last week’s piece suggesting that climate change is an actual thing, that it’s happening and maybe we ought to think about crafting some realistic responses. A number of commenters took me to task on a range of issues such as promoting the notion that we humans are to blame to some […]

Biological resources update OK’d

El Dorado County’s General Plan addresses a variety of issues related to protection of the local flora and fauna while especially encouraging economic development in the county. In March of last year, the county contracted with the Dudek consulting firm to review and potentially amend several General Plan policies related to biological resources. The agreement […]

New west slope storm water regulations enacted

El Dorado County supervisors adopted a new amended ordinance governing the flow of storm water on the county’s west slope at their May 19 board meeting. According to law, a new ordinance must be read or made available to the public on at least two formal occasions, a first reading and a second or final […]

The weekly Daley: Spare ‘climate’ change?

I’ve had a couple of interesting conversations lately with two climate change deniers. Smart, respectable, world-wise guys who have been around as many, if not more, blocks than I. They simply do not believe any of the reports of climate change, melting glaciers, rising seas. Lies, all lies, they say. Cooked up by corrupt “greener […]

Supes go another round with ‘train guys and trail people’

It’s 31 miles of bad road from Missouri Flat to East Bidwell Street in Folsom. Actually, it’s 31 miles of some good and some bad road, but it’s been 20 years of bad blood between the “trail people and the train guys.” That’s how El Dorado County Transportation Commission’s Dan Bolster described the “rails versus […]

Delays will affect Ice House Road

Work on Ice House Road between the junction of Wentworth Springs Road and the end of the pavement near Loon Lake in the Eldorado National Forest will begin June 1 and continue through October, according to a prepared statement from the El Dorado County Division of Transportation received last Thursday. Motorists will be subject to […]

Green Valley Rd. to close for six weeks

Green Valley Road will be closed from June 1 to July 13 between Lode Road and El Dorado Road, El Dorado County’s Department of Transportation advised in a prepared statement on May 21. County staff and the contractor for the project to replace the old Weber Creek Bridge, determined recently that geological conditions particularly on […]

Written guidelines direct future budget

El Dorado County has a new set of “budget policies” that may be likened to a roadmap leading to the destination of  “We’re not doing it the way we’ve always done it anymore.” The county’s history regarding fiscal policies may be discerned, in effect, by figuratively reading the document from back to front. For example, […]

Supervisors adopt new ‘budget policy’

The book hasn’t been written yet, but a working title could be “Mik and the Giant County Budget.” Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting once again featured District 1’s Ron Mikulaco taking issue with the soon-to-be-unveiled Recommended Budget prepared by Chief Administrative Officer Pamela Knorr. Agenda Item 31 was simply titled, “The Budget Ad-Hoc Committee recommending […]

The weekly Daley: Just another 10,000 oughta do it

If only the U.S. would send another 10,000 troops with boots on the ground to Iraq and maybe Syria, we would smack those ISIS boys right back to the Stone Age. South Carolina’s senior Sen. Lindsey Graham said that earlier this week. I threw in the “stone age” part just for context. He said the […]

Public comment: What is, what isn’t?

Public comment by any other name is still public comment. Whether background documents, arcane treatments, heartfelt letters, copies of textbook chapters or full volumes of data from other jurisdictions, under the California Environmental Quality Act, anything submitted by the public must be viewed and responded to when it relates to an Environmental Impact Report. Currently […]

General Plan amendment process draws fire from public and two supes

Supervisors Ron Mikulaco and Shiva Frentzen joined several members of the public in a general staff-bashing session during the May 12 El Dorado County Board of Supervisors meeting. At issue was a staff request for increased funding for additional services by the consulting firm ICF Jones & Stokes, Inc. The company specializes in environmental planning […]

Anti-secession group forms to stop State of Jefferson

With its headquarters in Redding, the political action committee, “Keep It California” is branching out to other northern California counties in a counter move to the proposed establishment of an independent state to be known as Jefferson. As envisioned, Jefferson would secede from California to become the nation’s 51st state. It would be assembled from […]

Mosquito Bridge replacement project on track for 2020

You could buy a new Mosquito Road Bridge for a mere $32 million, or maybe it will cost $53 million with approach roads and such. El Dorado County Division of Transportation has a number of alternatives for replacing the current bridge that in one incarnation or another has been in place for over 150 years. […]

BOS renews fire funding ‘patch’ for one year

As approved a year ago, the current El Dorado County Board of Supervisors continued its agreement to supplement five rural fire protection districts in the amount of $815,000. The county gave a similar amount last year to six districts, which at the time, included the Georgetown FPD in addition to the five others. Fallen Leaf […]

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