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Gov. Brown directs first-ever statewide mandatory water reductions

SACRAMENTO — Following the lowest snowpack ever recorded and with no end to the drought in sight, Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. today announced actions that will save water, increase enforcement to prevent wasteful water use, streamline the state’s drought response and invest in new technologies that will make California more drought resilient. “Today we […]

Chamber board and Joint Chambers Commission support EID election cycle change

The El Dorado Irrigation District Board of Directors adopted a resolution on Feb. 9 proposing to change the district’s election cycle from odd-numbered years to even-numbered years, so that the board elections would coincide with statewide general elections. The first election that this proposed change would affect, currently scheduled for Nov. 3, 2015, would instead […]

Heard over the back fence: Brining and pickling

 Mother Lode Lions is sponsoring an Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday, April 5, at 1 p.m. at Indian Creek School, 6701 Green Valley Road, Placerville. Don’t be late, the egg hunt starts at 1 p.m.sharp. JOIN THE HIKERS: On April 12, you can join Tim and Angela Jackson from 8 a.m.-noon for […]

Judge Ashworth focused on family

Vicki Ashworth decided to be a lawyer at a young age, after a conversation with her grandfather, Frank Noble. While he often asked her what she wanted to do when she grew up, it wasn’t until middle school that she had a solidified answer. “He was supportive of me in school, I was doing well. […]

New irrigation schedule for EID customers

A new summer irrigation schedule was adopted by the El Dorado Irrigation District board at its March 23 meeting. Approved as part of an update to its Drought Action Plan, the summer watering schedule was changed from three days a week to an odd/even alternating watering schedule for the period June 1 through Sept. 30. Residents with odd-numbered […]

Crafty creations for kiosks

Outdoors, brushes of white paint fly over the surface of rain catchment barrels imperiling the hair of fellow artists painting vines along the bottom of the barrels. Inside Catherine Moné’s house, four 9-year-old crafters pull out the gardening stakes, bird baths, bird feeders and wind chimes from a huge collection they’ve already made while, in the kitchen, other 9- to 13-year-olds are alternately stuffing a peanut butter/seed mixture into bird feeders and bagels into their mouths. This meeting of Funding for Farmlands is a little busier than usual, but it’s always a bustling scene.

The group is part of 4-H Gold Hill Toppers, and in November of 2014, they were looking for a 4-H Learning Service project that would serve a community need, allow them to research …

Dispensary files to get marijuana back

Kelly Chiusano was arrested following a Nov. 2014 raid on the marijuana dispensary he operated, the Pure Life Collective. But, five months later, with no charges filed, he wants to recover the marijuana taken during the raid and reopen the business. A filing on March 23 by attorney Zenia Gilg, on behalf of Chiusano, requests […]

Judge Sullivan aims to help community

Dylan Sullivan did not initially think of being a judge. She graduated from UC Davis in 1988 with a degree in physiology, landing a job with a medical devices company and eventually becoming the regional manager. “But I had a nagging feeling. I wanted to give back to the community,” she said, especially after the […]

Burglar given 46 years

Following his conviction in February of three counts of felony first-degree residential burglary and two counts of attempted burglary, Bradley Michael Zaun, 27, was sentenced to 46 years in jail on Monday, March 30. In sentencing Zaun, Superior Court Judge Kenneth J. Melikian cited the lack of mitigating factors in the case, noting that the burglaries were planned […]

Attorney General issues statement honoring Cesar Chavez

SAN FRANCISCO — Attorney General Kamala D. Harris issued the following statement in honor of Cesar Chavez Day: “Today we remember Cesar Chavez, a civil rights icon who fought tirelessly to provide justice, equality and dignity to farmworkers, immigrants and all those in pursuit of the American dream. His ability to organize, inspire and persevere […]

Boys and Girls Club to break ground April 18

On April 18, Boys and Girls Club El Dorado County Western Slope kicks off construction of its new building. The groundbreaking ceremony, scheduled for 11 a.m., will take place at the facility’s new site at the corner of Green Valley Road and Mallard Lane in Placerville. The club’s home of 15 years, the National Guard […]

Foals rescued by local group

Rehabilitation Underway at All About Equine Animal Rescue Three abandoned foals were safely transported to All About Equine Animal Rescue on the afternoon of Wednesday, March 25. Discovered by a Nevada rancher, the foals were found near their mothers, who had passed away; foul play is suspected. With no interest in these babies, the rancher […]

BOE supports bills to allow more time to pay fire fee

SACRAMENTO — Members of the California State Board of Equalization are supporting a bill requiring sellers of electronic cigarettes (eCigarettes) to register with the BOE provided that Senate Bill 24 is amended to provide funding for expanding the Cigarette and Tobacco Products Licensing program to include these retailers. In addition, board members decided to support […]

Heard over the back fence: Don’t be fooled

 Today from 2-6 p.m., you can donate blood at the Elks Lodge, 3821 Quest Court, (off Durock Road), Shingle Springs. Participants earn MyBloodSource rewards that can be redeemed online for great items like a T-shirt or movie pass. Walk-ins are welcome. The blood drive is sponsored by the Placerville Elks Lodge No. […]

Governor issues proclamation declaring Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day

SACRAMENTO — Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today issued a proclamation declaring Monday, March 30, 2015, as “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day” in the State of California. The text of the proclamation is below: “Nearly three and a half million Americans served in the United States military during the Vietnam War and related conflicts in […]

Three development projects awarded

Three development projects in El Dorado County have been named projects of the year. The American Society of Civil Engineers Sacramento Section’s 2014 Small Project of the Year went to the Green Valley Road at Tennessee Creek Bridge Replacement project. It was subsequently nominated for and awarded the Region 9 Small Project of the Year […]

Governor signs $1 billion emergency drought package

SACRAMENTO – Moving swiftly to help communities cope with California’s devastating drought and the ongoing effects of climate change, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Friday signed emergency legislation — AB 91 and AB 92 — that fast-tracks more than $1 billion in funding for drought relief and critical water infrastructure projects. “This funding is just […]

Courthouse debate results in letter from city

The Placerville City Council voted unanimously at the March 24 meeting to send a letter to the California Judicial Council in support of relocating the courthouse within Placerville city limits and requesting assistance with mitigating the anticipated economic impact to the downtown area.

Recent concern expressed by downtown business owners prompted both the letter and a special community meeting on March 22 with City Council members and members of the community to talk about the courthouse, both the Main Street courthouse and …

All aboard: And breakfast is served

Ron Mikulaco noted a history-making event at Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting. He claimed the “unanimous vote on a Rails to Trails issue” was the first ever. Often contentious events, Rails to Trails has pitted the so-called “train guys” against the “trail people” in numerous board meetings over the past five years. In general, the […]

Supervisors take on Rails to Trails: Board members unite on second item

County supervisors denied a proposal by the Placerville & Sacramento Valley Railroad to extend its excursion train trips to 30 for this year. In the second train-related item of its March 24 agenda, the board compromised by allowing two of the 30 requested excursions as special events. A charter trip for the local California Native […]

Heard over the back fence: Home and Garden Show

The Mother Lode Lions Club, corner of Missouri Flat and Pleasant Valley roads, Diamond Springs, has scheduled its grand re-opening for Saturday, April 18 from 1-9 p.m. Activities include face painting, raffles, music from 6-9 p.m. provided by The Fabulous Liars band. For a minimal fee, barbecue lunch and dinner will […]

Programs aim to protect county’s (dirty) water supply

El Dorado County has a Storm Water Quality Ordinance. That isn’t news to builders and developers, road maintenance and snow removal crews. The average citizen, however, probably is not familiar with the science and technical requirements that ensure and protect the county’s supply of high-quality water. Under a myriad of local, state and federal laws, […]

Gold and boots found on Main

Shades of “Paint Your Wagon” revived Gold Rush dreams in some when gold flakes were unearthed during the water line replacement work being done on Main Street. “We’ve known all along that we might find some flakes of gold during construction,” said Placerville City Manager Cleve Morris, “but it’s nothing anyone is going to get rich […]

Water board issues new regulations in face of drought

With the state in the fourth year of a drought, the State Water Board voted to re-impose new prohibitions on water use and added new ones at its March 17 meeting. Prohibitions approved in 2014 that were reauthorized for this year include: not using potable water to wash sidewalks and driveways; not allowing runoff when irrigating with potable water; […]

EDWPA continues debate on water rights application

Members of the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors and El Dorado Irrigation District got a refresher on a water rights application at their March 11 session. Presented at the board meeting of the El Dorado Water & Power Authority, of which the county and EID are a part, the presentation appeared to be for two […]

Water providers urge continued conservation

The Regional Water Authority (RWA) Board of Directors is urging its 22 water provider members to continue efforts to reduce water use by 20 percent or more according to a press release issued by the organization on March 13. RWA represents water providers in Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado, Yolo and Sutter counties. “With our typically wettest winter […]

Harris unemotional in interview until affair discussed

Colleen Harris showed little emotion in an interview with detectives hours after the death of her husband — until the interview focused on her husband’s infidelity. But, after the interview, during a “fit for incarceration” examination, she was quiet and unemotional.

Registered Nurse Tom Kulesa and Dr. Roger Gallant testified the afternoon of March 24 during the murder trial that Harris — who gave her last name as Batten, her previous married name — showed a “flat affect.” Kulesa said she reported no pain and was calm and cooperative. She did not mention memory loss or mental problems to Gallant, something that would be “absolutely” important to the examination.

Expanded senior lunch program proposed for Cameron Park

Seniors in Cameron Park may soon enjoy two additional days a week of low-cost lunches according to El Dorado County Supervisor Shiva Frentzen. In February, Frentzen contacted the Cameron Park Community Services District regarding offering a senior lunch program at the community center. At the March 18 meeting of the CSD, its Board of Directors unanimously adopted the […]

Threat locks down schools

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office received a call at approximately 1:05 p.m. on Wednesday, March 25, about a man at the El Dorado Center of the Folsom Lake College campus who claimed to have a gun and threatened to blow up the college. “We take threats like this very seriously,” said Lt. Tom Murdoch […]

Discover More Than Gold

The Discover More Than Gold on Main campaign is ongoing during the Main Street Rehabiliation Project, March through August, with a break in May and June. Each week has a specific theme and different activities  to promote interest in downtown Main Street during the construction period are featured, such as “Goldrush History” and “Self Indulgences.” […]

Small fires sparked off Highway 50

Fifteen small brush fires were sparked on the south side of Highway 50 Wednesday evening. Called in at 5:51 p.m., crews from El Dorado County Fire and Cal Fire put out the fires by 6:22 p.m. No other damage was reported. The fires caused traffic to back up between Placerville Drive and Forni Road as the far right […]

Community meetings ongoing in Dollar General proposal

By Meg Anderson Democrat correspondent “The community has spoken and Placerville has heard your voices,” said Michael Ranalli, El Dorado County District 4 supervisor, speaking to more than 50 people crowded in front of Worton Market on Tuesday, March 10 to discuss putting a stop to the Dollar General Corporation’s proposal to build a 9,100-square-foot […]

Dead deer has neighbors crying ‘foul’

Who ya gonna call? When Waterford resident Ann Spade recently found a dead deer in her yard, she thought a quick phone call to El Dorado County Animal Services would solve the problem. Nearly a week later, the deer was still there. “It was rotting and smelled horrible, even half a mile away,” said neighbor Kim […]

Best in Basin nominations accepted through March 31

Tahoe Regional Planning Agency is accepting project nominations for its 2014 Best in the Basin awards program through Tuesday, March 31. The Best in the Basin awards program is in its 25th year. It was created to recognize projects that demonstrate exceptional planning and design and compatibility with the environment and TRPA guidelines. The program […]

Grand opening for new animal shelter on Sunday

El Dorado County Animal Services is inviting the community to celebrate the grand opening of its new facility in Diamond Springs this Sunday, March 29, from 2 to 4 p.m., according to a press release from El Dorado County Animal Services. A much-anticipated event, the celebration will include tours of the facility, animal demonstrations, presentations, informational booths, […]

Citizens can report wildlife mortality to CDFW online

Californians around the state can now use an online tool to report incidents of fish and wildlife mortality directly to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. By contributing to CDFW’s growing database, citizens can help state environmental scientists gather important information necessary to monitor and evaluate wildlife populations and help prevent and control emerging […]

Heard over the back fence: Dance the night away

 Officials at Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, Wash., have informed us that Rebecca Rose Wolfe of El Dorado Hills was placed on its Dean’s List. To be placed on the Dean’s List, a student must complete at least 12 units for the quarter and attain a 3.5 grade-point average or higher. Congratulations Rebecca, […]

Action plan made for mental health issues in Tahoe

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — On March 5, more than 80 individuals made an action plan to address the gaps with mental health services in the South Lake Tahoe community. Donald Ashton, director of El Dorado County Health and Human Services, started the morning with the “the ugly, the bad and the good” to describe the […]

Harris in ‘gray fog’ when husband shot

A woman accused of killing her husband was in a “gray fog” the day the alleged murder occurred. “What happened today?” Detective Mike Lensing asked Colleen Harris on Jan. 6, 2013. Harris’ answer was simple: “I don’t know.” She remembered taking down Christmas decorations and watching a movie — and then she remembers seeing a […]

Cal Fire awards EDC $1 million in grants

Cal Fire awarded more than $1 million in grants to El Dorado County organizations for projects aimed at reducing wildfire threats. Of the 83 grants awarded throughout the state accounting for $9.5 million, organizations in El Dorado County accounted for six grants and about $1.05 million of grants funded by the State Responsibility Area fee. About […]

King Fire area gets a Band-Aid

Look up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No, it’s a helicopter dropping straw!

Helimulching was once again being carried out in the King Fire burn area as two helicopters dropped ton after ton of rice straw on the blackened hills, turning them yellow as clouds of thatched material spiraled into the air and then settled.

A joint effort of the U.S. Forest Service and the Sacramento Metropolitan Utility District, 695 acres were treated …

Big Cut miners settle: Legal action in Sac County pending

Charges were dropped against two miners allegedly illegally operating the Big Cut Mine after a settlement was made — but legal action is still pending in Sacramento County. Joseph Hardesty, one of the defendants, said that charges were dropped against him and co-defendant Richard Churches in December and November 2014, respectively. “I can’t go into […]

Trail opening March 28

Whether you’ve been out on the trail all year long or have been waiting for warmer weather, Opening Day for Trails, March 28, is a great way to officially celebrate the season. During this nationwide celebration of trails, the city of Placerville is teaming up with Rails‐to‐Trails Conservancy to host a ribbon cutting ceremony and […]

Forest Service auction online

PLACERVILLE — The U.S. Forest Service is offering the public an opportunity to purchase used government vehicles at the annual Used Vehicle and Equipment Auction scheduled online for March 23 through March 27. Sixteen vehicles and two flat-bed trailers will be sold to the highest bidder by way of an online auction through the GSA […]

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