Uncle matty: Clearing up humane confusion

One of the most rewarding things a person can do is go down to the local animal shelter and adopt a homeless dog or cat. Local shelters, local humane societies and local societies for the prevention of cruelty to animals (SPCAs) are notoriously understaffed, underfunded and overpopulated with animals just waiting for a good home. Emphasis on local. […]

Tahoe DUI patrols planned through Labor Day

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — The Avoid the 6 El Dorado County DUI Task Force has announced it will join nearly 10,000 other law enforcement agencies nationwide in support of an intensive crackdown on impaired driving from Aug. 19 to Sept. 5, known as “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.” Drunken driving checkpoints, DUI task force deployments […]

Murder-suicide likely in Grizzly Flat deaths

Authorities continued Monday to investigate the deaths of a Fair Oaks man and his young daughter, nearly 48 hours after their bodies were discovered on a Grizzly Flat property. El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies found Madeline Samaan-Fay, 2, and Mourad “Moni” Samaan, 49, dead inside his green Toyota 4Runner in rural Grizzly Flat Saturday night. […]

GDPUD scopes out GIS mapping

GEORGETOWN — GIS mapping of the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District’s pipelines, meters, lift stations and other facilities attracted seven bidders with a wide price range. The lowest bid was $65,000 and the highest was $344,000, General Manager Hank White told the Board of Directors during a meeting earlier this month. “We’re working up a […]

Unpaid utility bills head for tax rolls

Unpaid water or wastewater service bills from the Georgetown Divide Public Utility District are heading for the El Dorado County tax rolls as a lien against the property. The list of 71 unpaid bills ranges from $13.10 to $1,312. Three are more than $700. Thirteen are higher that $250. Seven are higher than $109. “This […]

GDPUD in line for hydro bucks

The Georgetown Divide Public Utility District may be in line for some free hydro power income. The Board of Directors heard a presentation from NLine Energy chief executive officer Matthew Swindle Aug. 8 when he told them his firm could generate 1 megawatt per year from three siphons in the GDPUD water system. NLine came […]

Heard over the back fence: It’s a pirate’s life at EDH Library

INCONVENIENT AGING:
  John Chapman sent the following accurate T-shirt statement: “Old age comes at an inconvenient time.” • • • PIRATES PLAYTIME:
 A “Pirates” fundraiser for the El Dorado Hills Library will be held at the library 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 20,  at 7455 Silva Valley Parkway. A suggested donation of $1 at the door is […]

Report details deputy DA’s DUI arrest

Before being arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, El Dorado County deputy district attorney Gloria Mas registered a blood-alcohol level of .12 percent and failed a series of sobriety tests, according to the California Highway Patrol’s arrest report. The report, obtained by the Mountain Democrat through a Public Record Act request, […]

McClintock rep here Aug. 16

Congressman Tom McClintock’s El Dorado County Field Representative Ross Branch will be available to meet with constituents Tuesday, Aug. 16. He will be at the El Dorado County Government Center 330 Fair Lane Placerville, from 10 a.m.-noon.

Franchise Tax Board auditing ‘Head of Household’

SACRAMENTO — The Franchise Tax Board announced mailing more than 135,000 audit letters to taxpayers to verify their “Head of Household” (HOH) filing status on their 2010 state tax return. Taxpayers who do not qualify will have their tax reassessed at either a single or married-filing-separate filing status. Nearly 34,000 taxpayers who used this status […]

Donner Party hike takes participants in footsteps of early pioneers

TRUCKEE — Hikers can experience the early emigrants’ journey across the Sierra Nevada Oct. 8-9 by participanting in the 19th annual Donner Party Hike. The Truckee Donner Chamber of Commerce is hosting this popular event that unites two passions – love for the Sierra Nevada wilderness and fascinating emigrant history. Participants can choose from six different […]

3rd annual Great Sierra River Cleanup volunteer registration now online

Online registration is now available for the third annual Great Sierra River Cleanup, taking place Sept. 17, from 9 a.m. to noon, along rivers, lakes and streams throughout the Sierra Nevada, the Sierra Nevada Conservancy announced Aug. 15. “This is a great opportunity to be good stewards of the region of the state that provides water […]

Quagga mussel researcher praises boat inspections at Tahoe

RENO, Nev. – “It could be a sign of more things to come,” Sudeep Chandra, quagga mussel researcher at the University of Nevada, Reno, said about the boat found earlier this month infested with dozens of quagga mussels. “It’s fortunate that this boat was caught, and shows the importance of the boat inspections to protect […]

Supervisors get General Plan amendment update

The process of amending El Dorado County’s General Plan is a complicated exercise in local governance. It is heavily reliant on the county’s bureaucracy, local residents, special interest groups and flexible timelines. Beginning in early April, the Board of Supervisors initiated a project that ultimately will propose significant changes to the General Plan. Practical as […]

Redevelopment referendum brings tough decisions

The redevelopment ball is back in the Placerville City Council’s court after a group of Placerville residents brought a petition with 1,087 signatures to City Hall on Aug. 4. The petition calls for the repeal of city ordinance 1641 approving the Placerville Redevelopment Plan. Placerville City Clerk Susan Zito completed a raw count  to make […]

Wildifre: Plan an escape route to keep your family safe

Editor’s note — This is the third and final part in a series produced by Cal Fire on surviving wildfire. Take some advice from Cal Fire’s Amador-El Dorado Unit Chief Kelly Keenan: “Leave your home before you are ordered to evacuate. You will not only be giving your family the best chance of surviving a […]

Eldorado National Forest gets new chief

While she’s new to the forest supervisor job, Kathy Hardy is not a new face on the Eldorado National Forest. Hardy was the Placerville District Ranger from 1999 to 2006. From 2006 to 2009, she served as deputy forest supervisor for the Stanislaus National Forest and most recently as the Central California District manager with […]

Missing toddler, father found dead in Grizzly Flat

Fairfield Daily Republic GRIZZLY FLAT — The bodies of a missing 2-year-old Sacramento girl and her father were discovered Saturday night in the man’s vehicle, nearly a week after he took her during a child custody dispute, authorities said. Madeline Samaan-Fay and Mourad “Moni” Samaan, 49, were found dead in his green Toyota 4Runner in […]

8-22-11 Volunteers needed to deliver meals to homebound people

HELPING THE HOME-BOUND: Volunteer drivers are needed to deliver meals to home-bound people in Placerville and Georgetown. Volunteers drive one day a week or a regularly scheduled day. The meal deliveries take place between 10:30 a.m. and noon. If you would like to help, call 530-621-6160.

Young murderers’ fate sealed at sentencing

More than two years after Joanne Witt was discovered brutally murdered in her home, star-crossed lovers Steven “Boston” Colver and Tylar Marie Witt were sentenced Friday afternoon for the 2009 killing of the El Dorado Hills single mom. Before a packed courtroom, El Dorado County Superior Court Judge Daniel B. Proud sentenced Colver, 21, to […]

Tahoe transportion summit planned

STATELINE, Nev. – The 15th annual Lake Tahoe Summit at Homewood Mountain Resort, Aug. 16, provides an opportunity for pivotal transportation concerns to be addressed, according to Carl Hasty, district manager of the Tahoe Transportation District. “With the potential loss of federal funding for projects as a result of both Nevada SB-271 and the inaction […]

Creek recovering from Angora Fire

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Lahontan Water Regional Water Quality Control Board, which has been monitoring Angora Creek since the devastating June 24, 2007, fire gave a largely upbeat report to the El Dorado County Water Agency Aug. 8. The weather was a major factor in mitigating the potential runoff from the 3,000-acre high-intensity fire. The […]

Heard over the back fence: Spend a warm winter — bid on a quilt

TEACHER INSTRUCTIONS:
 John Chapman provided the following T-shirt instructions: “Yes, I know they pick on you at school and call you names, but you still have to go. YOU’RE THE TEACHER!” • • • QUILT AND ART AUCTION:
 A “Threads of Life” quilt and fine art auction will be held on Saturday, Aug. 20, from 5 to […]

EID to close Aug. 19

EID offices will be closed on Friday, Aug. 19, for the second of five planned closures that, in total, amount to 40 hours of furlough for each employee. District headquarters in Placerville will also be closed on the following Fridays: Sept. 16, Oct. 21, and Nov. 18. Field staff furlough time will be scheduled so that […]

8-19-11 Placerville Gold Rush Chorus’ new members

NEW SONGS AND SINGERS: The Placerville Gold Rush Chorus is very pleased to welcome new members Bob Balch, Drew Fossgreen, and Al Woods, along with new chorus director Dr. Jeff Nelson. Recently the chorus restructured to be more community focused, and they are offering a much wider variety of music. Guests are always welcome to […]

8-19-11 “Healing All Together” – Snowline Hospice program

FUNDRAISER FOR HEALING: The “Healing All Together” Snowline Hospice program is a place where boys and girls, and their families, can work through their feelings after the death of a loved one. Link-up polls are now located at the six Snowline Thrift Stores and at the Snowline Hospice office, 6520 Pleasant Valley Rd., Diamond Springs. […]

8-17-11 Prostate Cancer Support Group

PROSTATE CANCER SUPPORT GROUP: On the 1st Thursday of each month, from 3 to 4:30 p.m., the El Dorado Prostate Cancer Support Group meets at Marshall Medical Center, 3581 Palmer Dr., Suite 202, Cameron Park. This group is led by a prostate cancer survivor and provides information and support to men with prostate cancer. For […]

8-17-11 Donene Vukovich – Ironwoman champion

DONENE DOES IT! How about the fact that Donene Vukovich, of Cameron Park, is the 2011 Ironwoman champion of the 38th Eppie’s Great Race? Eppie’s Great Race includes a 5.82 mile run, a 12.5 mile bicycle arduous journey, and a 6.35 mile paddle in the water to the finish line. Congratulations, Donene!

Supes question cost of more Tahoe clarity

How clear Lake Tahoe should be has been the subject of debate by residents, local, regional and the federal governments for decades. The short answer is that no one really knows for sure. Was it more clear 300 years ago than it is today or than it was 50 years ago? Scientists and engineers are […]

Relay for Life fundraiser set at Denny’s

Sierra Riders and Placerville Denny’s are hosting a fundraiser for Relay for Life on Sept. 1 from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. Ten percent of all food orders will be donated to Relay for Life and the waitress will donate all tips to this fundraiser. Bring family and friends and tell the waitress that you are […]

Tahoe police chief takes over fire dept.

By Adam Jensen SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Major changes are in store for both the South Lake Tahoe Fire and Police departments as the city continues a struggle to live within its means. And one of the most significant changes has already taken place. Police Chief Brian Uhler took over as fire chief on Monday following […]

Dog talk with Uncle Matty: Fits and phobias

I spend a lot of time writing about dog aggression — partly because it’s a big problem that keeps getting bigger and partly because there is such an air of confusion about it. At times, aggression seems to suddenly appear out of the blue. Take the following letter from a reader: “I recently moved from […]

Tahoe woman’s disappearance baffles family

On July 2, South Lake Tahoe woman Marie Hanson called her husband, told him she loved him and promised to be home in a week. But more than a month later, that phone call remains the last contact anyone in Hanson’s family has had with the 56-year-old woman. “We know that this disappearance is not deliberate,” said […]

UMHS teacher selected as AP reader

POLLOCK PINES — Martin Walsack, Spanish teacher at Union Mine High, was selected to participate in the annual Reading and scoring of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Examinations this June in Spanish Language. The College Board’s Advanced Placement Program gives more than 1.8 million capable high school students an opportunity to take rigorous college-level courses and examinations. Based on […]

Teens suspected of Serrano fire

Two El Dorado Hills teens were responsible for starting a fire that threatened homes in El Dorado Hills’ Serrano subdivision, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection announced. Teresa Mizuhara, Cal Fire spokeswoman, told the Mountain Democrat that two male teenagers, both 13 years old, were playing with a lighter when they started a […]

KFOK tests ‘higher ground’ signal

GEORGETOWN — A couple of weeks ago, the technical team of KFOK community radio in Georgetown conducted a test from Hotchkiss Hill to see how far the signal would carry once the station places a transmitter on higher ground. The two graphics above are of KFOK-LPFM’s present contour and potential contour after the move. The […]

Heard over the back fence: Have tea with Hattie Saturday

A NEW WRINKLE:
 John Chapman of Folsom provided the following T-shirt statement: “IRONY. The opposite of wrinkly.” • • • TEA WITH HATTIE:
 The High Tea with Hattie Craddock event is 1:30 p.m. tomorrow, Aug. 13. This annual event is dedicated to remembering the rich heritage of our area. Kati Vastola, a historical intern, has been added […]

Sen. Gaines’ TRPA transparency law signed

SACRAMENTO – Sen. Ted Gaines, R-Roseville, Aug. 10 announced that Gov. Brown has signed his legislation to create additional transparency, accountability and oversight within the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency.  “I am pleased that Gov. Brown recognizes the importance for governing bodies such as the TRPA to maintain openness with the public and thank him for […]

New court commissioner appointed

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — El Dorado County Superior Court officials have appointed Dylan Sullivan as court commissioner. Sullivan was appointed by presiding Judge Suzanne N. Kingsbury after an extensive search and with the recommendation of the Court Commission. Sullivan will be based in South Lake Tahoe, serving both sides of the slope, hearing all types […]