CHP toy drive under way

With the holiday season upon us, the Placerville area California Highway Patrol is doing its part to ensure all El Dorado County children have a 2011 to remember. The Placerville area CHP’s annual “CHiP’s for Kids” toy drive has begun. The drive, which ends Dec. 21, was originally started to help children from needy families. […]

Heard over the back fence: Enjoy Christmas Parade Sunday

My pal John Chapman gave me the following T-shirt statement: “How do you make a Small Fortune With Horses? Start with a LARGE Fortune.” • • • CHRISTMAS PARADE TIME! 
Don’t forget to bring the kids to the annual McIntire family Christmas Parade on Sunday, Dec. 4, at 1 p.m., on Main St., […]

Forest Service urges proper disposal of woodstove and fireplace ashes

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — The U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit is cautioning local residents to follow proper procedures for discarding woodstove and fireplace ashes, after responding to two wildfires caused by disposal of woodstove ashes on National Forest System lands. In two separate incidents in communities off Pioneer Trail on Lake Tahoe’s […]

Red Hats bring bushels of bears

The Red Hat Society has struck again. Last week several members of the Flashie Lassies, a local branch of the Red Hat Society, made a surprise appearance at the Placerville area California Highway Patrol office, bringing with them teddy bears. Lots and lots of teddy bears. Dubbed “Joannie’s Joy” in honor of Joann Coffin, the […]

State Dept., CIA vets wow audience for charity

John and Patricia Garon were the guest speakers at the American Association of University Women’s fundraising event on Nov. 10. The AAUW provides scholarships for local young women who have been living in foster care, turn 18 and want to attend college. The group also supports a summer math and science camp at UCD for […]

November 25, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 5 Replies

Sequoia Restaurant tree cut

The Sequoia Restaurant’s trademark coast redwood is getting a makeover. The redwood, which has long served as a symbol of Placerville’s Bee-Bennett House that is home to the Sequoia, was trimmed Monday — the first step in its long-awaited touch-up. Sequoia owner Nello Olivo told the Mountain Democrat that the tree, an estimated 190 feet […]

November 25, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

Free walking presentation coming to Sacramento

SACRAMENTO — The Sacramento Walking Sticks Volkssport Club would like to invite people to an inspirational presentation from Ken and Marcia Powers on Thursday, Nov. 10, at 7 p.m. We will meet at the Conference Center of the SMUDHeadquarters Building, 6201 S Street, Sacramento 95817. This event is free to the public. When people retire, […]

EID beefs up its computer system

Following a presentation and tour of the computer server room, the El Dorado Irrigation District Board of Directors unanimously approved $305,000 in the first of three phases of computer upgrades at its Nov. 14 meeting. The six-month project by Information Technology Manager Tim Ranstrom will expand the backup capacity in the system by adding a […]

EID recognized for electrical savings

The El Droado Irrigation Districtg received a PG&E Golden Spotlight Award for the district’s 2010 efforts in excelling in power conservation by participating in PG&E’s voluntary demand response program’s peak day pricing events. This is the fifth consecutive year that EID has received this award for its efforts in power curtailment for the El Dorado […]

EID shifts 50-50 plan

On a 4-1 vote, the El Dorado Irrigation District board adopted the cost recovery allocation methodology of collecting 50 percent of revenue from fixed charges and 50 percent of revenue from variable commodity charges for water, wastewater and recycled water, returning it to the cost recovery methodology used by the district prior to 2008. Voting […]

Nearly flat budget for EID

At its Nov. 14 meeting, the El Dorado Irrigation District Board of Directors adopted the 2012 mid-cycle operating budget in the amount of $42.970 million. In accordance with board policy, the board adopts a two-year budget and conducts a mid-cycle review to determine any changes that may be needed in the second year of the […]

November 25, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

DWR announces initial water delivery estimate for 2012

 The Department of Water Resources has announced an initial allocation of 60 percent of requested deliveries to State Water Project contractors for 2012.  The initial allocation – or water delivery estimate – is always conservative because it is made before the major winter storms that supply reservoir storage. Today’s initial 60 percent allocation is relatively […]

EDH sewer lift station to get facelift

A sewer lift station in El Dorado Hills will get a nearly $1 million facelift and none too soon. “Extremely, extremely bad” is how Wastewater/Recycled Water Division Manager Vicki Caulfield described the Timberline lift station. “This is an emergency. We’re not waiting,” said Director George Wheeldon. “We have to replace these things before they fail. […]

Dog talk with Uncle Matty: Cutie and the feast

Your dog’s sense of smell is so keen, he can smell Thanksgiving coming a week away. In fact, our dogs spent the first 328 days of 2011 preparing for this most American of holidays and the lazy days of leftovers that follow. Consider yourself warned: He is cute, he is crafty, and he will stop […]

Mormon Emigrant Trail closed

The U.S. Forest Service has closed the east end of the Mormon Emigrant Trail near Highway 88 to through traffic due to ice and snow. The west end of the road, near Sly Park reservoir, will remain open to passenger vehicles as far as Silver Fork Road or to the point where snow covers the […]

Heard over the back fence: Nominate an outstanding young person

 Thanks to one of our readers, Bob Henley of Placerville, the following Will Rogers’ quote from the book “Will Rogers, His Life and Times” by Richard M. Ketchum is offered: “Outside of traffic, there is nothing that has held this country back as much as committees.” • • • RECOGNIZING OUTSTANDING YOUNGSTERS: 
The El […]

Tahoe officer put on leave

By Adam Jensen A South Lake Tahoe police officer has been placed on paid administrative leave following the initiation of a federal criminal investigation, according to city officials. Officer Johnny Poland turned in his badge and gun on Monday as part of the administrative leave process, said Police Chief Brian Uhler during a Thursday phone […]

November 23, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Assemblywoman Huber plans move to Rancho

The first local casualty of California’s new Citizens Redistricting Commission is El Dorado Hills’ own Democrat Assemblywoman Alyson Huber, who announced last week that she’s moving to Rancho Cordova. The commission packed up Huber’s notoriously gerrymandered 10th Assembly District and shipped it to Marin County. El Dorado Hills now resides in a more heterogeneous District […]

Snowline Hospice shindig highlights organization’s founders

Highlighting the three remaining founding directors of Snowline Hospice was a 30-year celebration held Sunday at the Thompson Hill home of Tom and Judith Dillon. The three still living founders are Dr. Doug Tustin, attorney George Applebaum and Jim Upshaw, retired reverend of the Federated Church. Tustin, inspired by a hospice organization that formed in […]

Thanksgiving closures set

Some offices throughout El Dorado County will be closed, Thursday, Nov. 24, and Friday, Nov. 25, due to Thanksgiving, a national holiday. Here’s a look at what local residents may expect: All schools in El Dorado County will be closed both Thursday and Friday, the day after Thanksgiving. The offices of the Placerville Police Department […]

The last window show: Longtime holiday painter has deadly affliction

Paula Morgan couldn’t help but wipe a tear from her eye last week as she watched her husband of 46 years, Bruce, swipe a small paintbrush with white over the picture window at the Cascada Restaurante on Main Street in Placerville. After all, this is probably the last season Bruce Morgan will be performing the […]

November 23, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

GDPUD wins Kaiser Siphon case

A Jan. 11, 2010 lawsuit seeking damages against the Georgetown Public Utility District over a pipeline right of way went against the plaintiff in a decision filed Nov. 16 by Superior Court Judge Nelson Keith Brooks. The court decision was announced Nov. 21 by GDPUD General Manager Hank White in an email sent to the […]

A Thanksgiving pop quiz

On our day of national Thanksgiving we gathered, family and friends, to express our thanks for our peaceful and abundant lives. We honored all those who came before us who made personal sacrifices and contributions, great and small. Now that Thanksgiving is over and the excitement wanes, you may find it entertaining and educational to […]

State wants to return undelivered tax refunds

SACRAMENTO —  The Franchise Tax Board announced it is holding more than $17 million in returned state income tax refunds. This year more than 52,000 refunds, ranging from $1 to $39,000, have been returned. Typically, refunds are returned because the taxpayer changed residences after filing a tax return. Taxpayers expecting a state refund, or unsure if […]

November 23, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

Rain could start forest road closures

Upcoming storms may start the seasonal closure of Eldorado National Forest dirt roads and trails. “It’s time to begin planning for the Eldorado National Forest seasonal dirt road closure,” said Forest Supervisor Kathy Hardy. “It looks like we’re getting into a wet weather pattern.” The Forest Service closes dirt roads during the wet weather months to […]

November 23, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

Heard over the back fence: Local author to sign books at Caffe Santoro

 Thanks to my friend John Chapman, the following T-shirt statement is offered:
 “The difficult age is when you are too TIRED to work and too POOR to quit!” • • • LOCAL AUTHOR SIGNING:
 Susan Salluce has a new book out, titled “Out of Breath.” You can meet Susan at her book signing, […]

Ex-nurse practitioner pleads no contest

Greg Dales appeared in court on a recent Tuesday with his attorney Thomas Johnson and Judge Daniel B. Proud presiding. Dales was accused in May 2010 of “touching a patient while in the exam room.” Dales said he decided he had already put his family through enough. Through the advisement of his attorney, Dales pleaded […]

November 21, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Deputy kills Tahoe bear in apparent accidental shooting

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — A Douglas County sheriff’s deputy accidentally shot a black bear with a live round rather than a rubber bullet during a recent incident that resulted in the death of a mother of two cubs. About 10 p.m. on a recent Friday, deputies responded to the Tahoe Shores Mobile Home Park in […]

November 21, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Living with pulmonary hypertension

Shortness of breath, fatigue and weakness, heart palpitations, dizziness and chest pain — these are the symptoms of many different diseases or one rare disease — pulmonary hypertension. PH is abnormally high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs, making the right side of the heart work harder than normal and often leading to […]

November 21, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

Tea Party Patriots hear about county, national issues

El Dorado County Chief Administrative Officer Terri Daly told a packed lecture hall at Oak Ridge High School that she has “a deep dark secret.” Speaking at a Tea Party Patriots forum Tuesday night, Daly admitted, “I’m not your typical government administrator. I’ve only been in government about 10 years.” Prior to that she said […]

CHP launches Explorer post

The California Highway Patrol is looking for a few good teens. On Nov. 30, the Placerville area CHP office will host the inaugural meeting of its first Explorer post. Designed for youths interested in a career in law enforcement, the CHP’s Explorer post provides its members with the opportunity to work side-by-side with officers. “A […]

Chain of knowledge helps local moms

A long, slow hug marked a turning point in two mothers’ lives — a hug that had been 15 years in the making. While their daughters, 15-year-old Hailey Huntington and almost-15-year-old Marissa Hunt, curled up on the Hunts’ couch with an iPad, Alex Fila, 44, and Ginny Hunt, 48, talked about medications, seizures and the […]

November 21, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged

‘Souper’ group brings friendship and support to caregivers

November is Alzheimer’s Awareness month. It’s not “old-timers” or “all-timers” disease and it doesn’t just affect the elderly. People in their 30s, 40s and 50s have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s — a disease that affects more than 5 million Americans. It’s the most common form of dementia, robbing its victim of cognitive and social abilities, […]

Woman’s death still a mystery

The skeletal remains found in a Washington state campground have been positively identified as a missing South Lake Tahoe woman. Marie Colello Hanson, 54, was first reported missing by family members in July. On a whim, Hanson left her South Lake Tahoe home to attend the National Rainbow Gathering near Stevenson, Wash. She was last […]

Sheriff’s Department restructures patrol shifts

The latest move by the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department is giving county residents more bang for their buck. On Thursday, the department announced its overhaul of patrol deputy shifts, which officially began last month. By going from three patrol shifts per day to two, the department was able to expand its Special Enforcement Detail […]

November 21, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 4 Replies

Leisure, hospitality led month-over job losses

The unemployment rate in the Sacramento-Arden Arcade-Roseville Metropolitan Statistical Area was 11.4 percent in October, unchanged from a revised 11.4 percent in September, and below the year-ago estimate of 12.2 percent. This compares with an unadjusted unemployment rate of 11.2 percent for California and 8.5 percent for the nation during the same period. The unemployment […]

November 21, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 3 Replies

Tax board compliance initiative brings results

SACRAMENTO — The Franchise Tax Board announced results from the state’s second tax Voluntary Compliance Initiative (VCI2) and the news is good. According to preliminary numbers, VCI 2 raised $350 million with $293 million received in cash and an added $57 million expected by June 15, 2012, from installment payments. This initiative was estimated to […]

Heard over the back fence: Marshall ER Clothes Cupboard needs replenishing

 John Chapman provided the following T-shirt statement: “I Shook My Family Tree – and a Bunch of Nuts Fell Out.” • • • CLEAN CLOTHES NEEDED:
 The Marshall ER Clothes Cupboard needs clean pants (elastic waist band if possible) and long sleeved tops to assist those who might have to leave the hospital […]

Not too late to get flu vaccine

The Public Health Division of the El Dorado County Health and Human Services Agency has wrapped up its community flu clinics for the season, and is now offering low-cost flu vaccine by appointment. The seasonal influenza vaccine is available in both the shot and nasal mist forms through Public Health for $10 per vaccination. No […]

December 14, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 6 Replies

EID chief, lawyer contracts extended; no raises

Following a closed session it was announced that the contracts for El Dorado Irrigation District’s general manager and district counsel were extended three years. Both had requested 1 percent cost-0f-living adjustments, but the board declined to grant that. Both contracts did not expire until 2013, but were extended without changes to 2016. The terms are […]

Pollock man named to forestry board

Gov. Jerry Brown reached up into El Dorado County to find two new members of the state’s Board of Forestry and Fire Protection. Susan Britting of Coloma and Rich Wade of Pollock Pines got the nod and attended their first board meeting this month. Wade visited the Mountain Democrat offices a couple of weeks ago […]

November 18, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Deadly infection attacks former deputy sheriff

“I went to sleep looking at the face of my beautiful wife and thinking I had bursitis,” said Rob Downey, 47, “and woke up 30 days later with a doctor bending over me saying, ‘I’m sorry Mr. Downey, we had to take your arms and legs.’ Then he left.” It was a traumatic awakening for […]

November 18, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 9 Replies

State of Tahoe ski industry: ‘This is our time’

By Matthew Renda and Jason Shueh LAKE TAHOE — Lake Tahoe has always been entangled in a wrestling match between ski industry growth and local community interests — now more than ever, as millions in resort upgrades are under way heading into the 2011-’12 ski season.Vail Resorts is nearing completion of $30 million in resort […]

November 18, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

45-day halt in medical pot gardens, new sellers

Despite three hours of emotional testimony by medical marijuana patients, El Dorado County Supervisors Tuesday voted unanimously to impose a moratorium on new dispensaries and all outdoor gardens. Effective immediately, the moratoria will remain for 45 days or until the county crafts a set of ordinances governing the growing and distribution of medical cannabis. Under […]

November 18, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 36 Replies

Perseverance, faith, hope saved Holocaust survivor

Marian Blumenthal Lazan came to Placerville on Monday, Nov. 14 and stole its heart. “Mine is the story that Anne Frank might have told if she had survived,” began Lazan. “It’s a story of perseverance, determination, faith and above all, hope.” Speaking to a mixed audience of more than 400 adults and children at the […]