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Dawn Hodson

McClintock’s dichotomy: Choice between freedom or socialism

In a short presentation that covered a number of topics, Congressman Tom McClintock declared Americans are faced with some difficult choices when he spoke before the El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce on Aug. 14.

We’re at a crossroads, he said. Either return to American founding principles of individual liberty, constitutional and limited government, and personal responsibility or fade into history as another failed European state.

However, all is not lost, said McClintock, who reminded the audience that past examples of bipartisan cooperation helped get the country back on track, in part, by removing the burden imposed by the government on the economy and the American people.

GDPUD conduct code proposed

A draft of a new policy governing conduct was discussed at the Aug. 13 Board of Directors meeting of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District. Presented for discussion by Director Kathy Otermat, the policy included language requiring members of the board to demonstrate “respect, kindness, consideration and courtesy to others. Responsiveness and attentive listening in […]

One lucky fellow

The winner of the $289K Powerball ticket has been identified as Camino resident Mike Gregor, 67. Gregor won in the drawing on Aug. 3 when he purchased a ticket at the Camino Food Center and picked five of the winning numbers, only missing the Powerball number. “I thought someone was messing with me at first,” he said. […]

GDPUD: New water plant a long way off

The retrofit of the Auburn Lake Trails Water Treatment Plant was back on the agenda at Tuesday’s board meeting of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District. Interim General Manager Gary Hoffmann reported the district does not have financing in place with either the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the California Department of Public Health to […]

Immigration reform social issues highlighted

Editor’s note — This is part 4 of a four-part series on immigration reform legislation that is making its way through Congress. Social capital and immigration reform Supporters of S. 744 believe that legalizing the 11 million to 12 million aliens in the country will “bring them out of the shadows” and help them eventually […]

Planning panel shapes marijuana growing law

The El Dorado County Planning Commission held a first hearing on a proposed ordinance regulating medical marijuana cultivation at its Aug. 8 meeting. Previously the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors imposed a moratorium on new medical marijuana dispensaries and established interim standards for the outdoor cultivation of marijuana. The new ordinance would replace the existing […]

Winning lottery ticket bought in Camino

Someone buying a Powerball lottery ticket in Camino is a whole lot richer as a result of last Wednesday’s drawing. According to the Camino Food Center, someone bought a ticket from them that is worth $289,341. As of Friday, the holder of the winning ticket had not yet been identified. Contact Dawn Hodson at 530-344-5071 […]

Going for the gold

Flying off to the World Gold Panning Championship recently were Richard (aka Uncle Fuzzy) and Joyce Mason. Wishing them well in the competition was the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors which, at its July 23 meeting, recognized the couple with a proclamation acknowledging the role as volunteer ambassadors for the county at the event […]

Teller retires: 45 years in banking

“I enjoyed the whole time,” said Wells Fargo teller Edythe Olsen, who retired on July 31 amid tears and hugs. Employed at the same bank for 44 years and 11 months, Olsen said she was getting ready to turn 72 and decided it was time to retire. “I never once said I didn’t want to […]

Immigration reform: Critics find loopholes in bill

Editor’s note — This is part 2 of a four-part series on immigration reform legislation that is making its way through Congress. While the “Gang of Eight” in Congress and their supporters tout immigration reform as being the solution to the problem of 11 million-12 million illegals and a perceived lack of qualified workers, others […]

Immigration reform: Dueling studies examine fiscal effects

Editor’s note — This is part 3 of a four-part series on immigration reform legislation that is making its way through Congress. The immigration reform bill has ignited a fight between those who say the bill would add to the financial and unemployment problems of the country and those who say it would do just […]

Walking America 4 cancer

“I’m the walker,” said 60-year-old Mike Warren, who slipped into town just long enough to tell the story of how he is walking cross-country to raise money for cancer research. Working on behalf of a nonprofit group called USA Hands, Warren started his quest on July 23 at the Emeritus Senior Living Center in Vacaville. […]

County warns of roadside vendors

Concerned about outside vendors selling flowers, produce and processed food along roadsides, a coalition of public and private organizations has launched a “Protect Local Growers Campaign.” Composed of staff from the County of El Dorado, Sheriff’s Office, Agriculture Department, Environmental Management Division, City of Placerville, El Dorado County Farm Bureau and the El Dorado County Chamber […]

30th anniversary: Night Out a community party

It was party time as residents gathered with their neighbors, law enforcement and fire personnel, and volunteers throughout El Dorado County for National Night Out on Tuesday evening.

Part of a nationwide event that’s in its 30th year, the goal of National Night Out is to strengthen communities by encouraging neighbors to get to know each other, to form stronger relationships with each other and local law enforcement agencies, to heighten crime-prevention awareness, and to send a message to criminals that local neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.

Immigration reform: Senate Bill 744 outlines the basics

Editor’s note — This is part 1 of a four-part series on immigration reform legislation that is making its way through Congress. Immigration reform is on the agenda as President Obama and the leaders of both parties have promised to come up with a plan to give amnesty to the estimated 11 million to 12 […]

Medicare changes limit access to local medical equipment

Starting July 1, El Dorado County Medicare patients found themselves with fewer options for accessing certain medical equipment locally as a result of changes in the way Medicare pays for it.

Called the Durable Medical Equipment (DME) Competitive Bidding Program, 10 years ago Medicare began a test program in certain urban areas by seeking bids for sole-source providers of medical equipment. Since July 1 of this year, the program has expanded and now 99 urban centers are part of it, including El Dorado County.

Caltrans roadwork updated

Caltrans has released an updated schedule of long and short-term roadwork projects for El Dorado County and the Tahoe Basin. Due to “Hot August Nights,” no lane closures will be allowed on eastbound U.S. Highway 50 from noon on Wednesday to 8 p.m. Monday and westbound from 10 a.m. Friday to 8 p.m. Monday. LONG-TERM […]

Food Bank coming

The Food Bank of El Dorado County announced upcoming free food distribution dates and places for residents in Placerville . Food to be given out includes produce, bread and pastries. In Placerville, the food distribution will be at the Veterans Memorial Building, 430 Placerville Drive Sept. 11 and Oct. 9 from 10 a.m. to 12 […]

Local enjoys restoring the ‘jeep, jeep, jeep’

In a rare appearance, five vintage Jeeps dating from World War II and the Korean War were on display at Strauss Wholesale Food Company earlier this month.

Included in the lineup were two Jeeps owned and restored by Jimmy Strauss. One was a rare prototype 1941 Willys MA. The other was a 1944 Willys MB used by the Marine Corps in the South Pacific.

Also on display were Jeeps restored by Strauss but owned by others including a 1943 Jeep produced by Ford; a 1945 Jeep MB that was used in the Solomon Islands by the Navy; and a Willys M38 used in the Korean War.

County Fair: Attendance rises 18%

With this year’s El Dorado County Fair now just a memory, Jody Gray, who is the Fair Association’s chief executive officer, reported that attendance was up 18 percent over last year with 56,000 people attending the four-day event. Revenue also increased by $60,000 over last year. Gray said fabulous weather, good attractions and lots of […]

Green Valley convenience center under review

A proposed convenience center in El Dorado Hills was sent back for additional work by the El Dorado County Planning Commission after multiple objections from local residents. Planned for a 2.12-acre piece of land on the southeast corner of the intersection of Green Valley Road and Sophia Parkway, the center would include a gas station, convenience store, […]

Interim GDPUD GM introduced

Gary Hoffmann, the new interim general manager of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District (GDPUD) was introduced at a special board meeting on Tuesday (July 30). With board President Bonnie McLane lauding his credentials, Hoffmann said he was there “to help the district fulfill its mission and to help the board accomplish it.” The board […]

ALT plant bids in

Bids to retrofit the Auburn Lake Trails Water Treatment Plant have been made public by the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District. The low bid came in at $10.8 million and was submitted by Auburn Constructors Inc. of Sacramento. The highest bid was for $12 million and was submitted by RGW Construction. Only four of the seven […]

Web portal idea draws comments

A Request for Proposal to set up a Web portal drew some clarifying comments from backers after it was reported that included in the RFP was language suggesting that the portal be supported with advertising. Approved by the Board of Supervisors at its July 16 meeting, the RFP included spending up to $100,000 to develop […]

McNuggetini sparks new career for former EDC resident

Combine a travel and food show with a couple of zany dames and you have the making of a new cooking show featuring former resident of El Dorado County Alie Ward, 36.

The offspring of a parent in the news biz, Ward comes with journalistic chops including time spent at LA Weekly (while also moonlighting as a bartender) and a stint at the Los Angeles Times and TV station KTLA.

Her best friend and cooking show sidekick, Georgia Hardstark, 33, is a longtime Los Angeles resident who was a …

Fire base camp acts like mini-town

For all the drama of the Kyburz Fire, those watching it only saw part of the story. For behind it, out of sight and out of mind, were all the logistics that went into fighting the fire. On July 12 those logistics were on display at the Kyburz Fire Incident Command Post that was temporarily […]

Supes keep options open in White Rock Connector JPA

At the July 16 meeting, the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors voted to move forward on two actions related to the Elk Grove-Ranch Cordova-El Dorado County Connector Authority Agreement (White Rock Connector JPA). The actions included requesting that the Joint Powers Agreement for the Connector Authority be amended to reserve the county’s right to consider […]

Cruisin’ in the veggie mobile

Let’s face it, there are only so many times you can use oil to deep fry before you have to throw it away.

But what if instead of trashing it, the oil could perform one last good deed before expiring, namely powering a car?

If so, Placerville resident Bob Hollis wants to talk to you because he can use it to fuel his veggie mobile.

Hollis, 49, a man with a passion for the environment, said he first became interested in vehicles fueled by something …


In the article “Supes OK $280k to promote county,” Davey “Doc” Wiser was quoted as saying he wanted to apply for a grant to pay for stagecoach rides. The money, instead, was intended to be used for repairs and maintenance of the El Dorado Western Railroad.


The article “Skateboarding and Staying Gold” said the Placerville Skate Park was originally built by El Dorado County. However, the building of the park was actually spearheaded by Placerville Rotary members and in particular local businessman Joe Stancil Sr., for whom the park is named. Stancil is credited with raising half a million dollars from […]

Skate park back at CPCSD

The skate park at Christa McAuliffe Park was back on the agenda at Wednesday’s board meeting of the Cameron Park Community Services District. Resident Bill Carey had requested the item be on the agenda after complaining repeatedly at board meetings about trash, graffiti, drug and alcohol use in the park. Citing Joe’s Skate Park in Placerville […]

Supes give CASA $50,000

The El Dorado County Board of Supervisors approved a one-time contribution of $50,000 to CASA El Dorado at last week’s board meeting. CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocate Association. The agency, which has operated nationally for 35 years, provides volunteer advocates for children in court. Often CASA volunteers are called in to assist cases […]

Supes OK $280k to promote county: $100k for Website that will sell advertising

On Tuesday, the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors approved spending $280,000 to help promote the county. Recommended by the County Economic Development Advisory Committee, one of the recommendations approved by the board was $80,000 for a mini-grant program. The grants would be awarded for up to $5,000 for cultural and community development projects. Half […]

Animal Shelter: New site purchase approved

It was a full house on Tuesday as the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors voted to move ahead and purchase property for the future site of the Western Slope Animal Shelter. Sporting an existing building as well as acreage for livestock, the board authorized spending $1.86 million for the 4.73-acre site at 6425 Capitol Avenue […]

Carson Trail markers finished

With the sun glinting off the sapphire-colored waters of Caples Lake, approximately 35 people gathered on the shoreline to celebrate the completion of the Carson River Route Interpretive Sign Project.

Eight years in the making, the project to mark the Carson Trail was spearheaded and paid for by the California-Nevada Chapter of the Oregon California Trails Association (OCTA) at a cost of $11,000.

The two signs at Caples Lake marked the last of seven …

GDPUD hires 2nd interim GM

At a special meeting on July 10, the board of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District made the decision to hire a second interim general manager. Kelley Shively is currently acting as interim general manager, a position he has held since March when General Manager Hank White went on leave. White has since resigned his […]

Frentzen ousted as county chamber president

Shiva Frentzen, president of the El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce, was ousted at a special board meeting on July 9 after a conflict arose over her membership on different elected groups. Frentzen said the action was taken following her signing a letter, along with Sam Bradley and Bill Center, that was sent to Cameron […]

Who owns Snowshoe Thompson’s skis?

Do the skis of Snowshoe Thompson’s at the El Dorado County Museum belong to the museum or are they just on loan?

That’s what Liz Fairchild, whose family once owned the skis, wants to know.

Last year, Fairchild, whose family lived in Placerville for several generations, contacted Mary Cory, director of the El Dorado County Historical Museum.

In a letter to Cory, Fairchild said, “I have documentation showing that the skis were originally acquired by Will and Frances Fairchild for display in the Fairchild Drug Store, Placerville, before being loaned to the museum for display. Do you have this same documentation and if not can you provide me with what documentation you do have regarding the loan of the skis to the museum.”

Cory’s responded by letter saying, “So far my research has shown that the skis were acquired by the County Museum as part of a larger collection of artifacts in a transfer of Interest from the Chamber of Commerce …

Ross Dress for Less OK’d next to Save Mart

Placerville is one step closer to having a Ross Dress for Less store after the El Dorado County Planning Commission approved the developer’s application on July 11. Up for consideration was a proposal by property owner, WRI Goldenstate LLC to tear down an existing 9,500-square-foot building in Prospectors Plaza and construct a new 25,000-square-foot building […]

Skateboarding and staying gold

It was just another day in the concrete jungle as skateboarders swooped in and out of sculpted canyons, did crooked grinds, fakies, and flipped 360 turns mid-air at the Placerville Skate Park.

Located just inside the fairgrounds, the park, which is also known as Joe’s Skate Park, presents challenges to any skateboarder from beginner to expert.

On the morning of June 27, 11-year-old Logan Rogers was there practicing his “air out of bowls” and “axle stall.” Nearby was veteran Isaac Gomez, 23, of Placerville, who was flying “over the box” with friends.

A popular venue with the skating crowd, the park was in danger of closing permanently a few years ago but got a second chance largely because …

More on Main Street Matters

Following the announcement that Placerville had been selected as one of 20 towns to receive a paint makeover by the Benjamin Moore & Co., Nick Harris, vice president of Marketing for the company, provided some additional details about the contest. Saying this was the first year for the project, Harris said that Placerville was pre-selected […]

Clean audit for EID

Auditors for the El Dorado Irrigation District (EID) issued an unqualified (“clean”) opinion for the district in their report to EID’s Board of Directors at their meeting on Monday, June 24. That report was provided by EID’s auditors, Richardson & Company. The audit found that the district’s total assets decreased $24.6 million, or 3 percent […]


The story “Forest thinning planned by SMUD” mentioned the work was being done above Slap Creek Reservoir. That should have been Slab Creek Reservoir.

Placerville a winner in Main Street Matters contest

Proving once again how much local residents cherish downtown Placerville, it was announced on Monday that the city is one of 20 winners in the paint makeover contest called “Main Street Matters,” sponsored by the Benjamin Moore Paint Company. The campaign to honor and revitalize Main Street included over 130 cities in the United States and […]

GDPUD board starts process to hire new GM

The board of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District held a special meeting on July 2 to discuss what to do next after the resignation of General Manager Hank White. The previous day, White, submitted his letter of resignation, giving the district 60 days notice as required by his contract. In his letter to the […]

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