Sen. Gaines votes no on Demo budget

SACRAMENTO – Senator Ted Gaines, R-Roseville, June 29 issued the following statement regarding the Democrats’ most recent budget plan: “This is the fourth Democrat majority vote budget attempt this year, and the fourth time I have voted ‘no’ on their budget package.” “Our plea for real pension reform, a hard spending cap, job creation and […]

EID to replace Camp 2 bridge

When the El Dorado Irrigation District acquired Project 184 in 1999 from PG&E, it gained ownership of a water delivery system from four alpine lakes high in the Sierra that drop water nearly 4,000 feet into the American River. At Kyburz a dam captures some of the water that then flows along steep slopes for […]

7-13-11 Senior activities seek idividuals

SHARING YOUR SKILLS WITH OTHERS: The Senior activities program is seeking individuals who have a skill, hobby or area of interest they would like to share with other senior groups in the Pollock Pines area. For more information, call 530-621-6369 or 530-621-6158.

7-11-11 Rotary Club takes Boys & Girls Club to River Cats game

TAKE THE KIDS OUT TO THE BALLGAME! Cameron Park Rotary Club members have scheduled a River Cats trip for the Western Slope Boys and Girls Club. On Friday, July 15, the Rotarians will host 35 members of the Boys and Girls Club and treat them to a River Cats game. Thank you, Rotarians.

7-11-11 “Childbirth Education” class in P.V.

INDULGE THAT BABY: A class titled “Childbirth Education” is scheduled for Saturday, July 30, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., in Placerville. Class topics include focusing on the stages of labor, medical options and pain management. The class fee is $120. First 5 El Dorado offers scholarships to help pay class tuition. For exact location […]

Ecosystem Restoration funding comment period open

The California Department of Fish and Game is accepting comments on recommendations for proposed projects related to the 2010-2011 CALFED Ecosystem Restoration Program. As the state implementing agency for the ERP, the DFG released a Proposal Solicitation Package in December 2010 requesting proposals focused on three ERP priorities: 1) Restoration projects that restore or enhance […]

City sewer rate discount today

Measure H tax revenues will show up in city ratepayers’ July 10 bill with an approximate 10 percent discount, as approved by the Placerville City Council at Tuesday’s meeting. Placerville voters approved Measure H, a quarter percent additional sales tax, on the November 2010 ballot. The measure, dedicated to providing ratepayer relief from city sewer […]

Denham convicted in Mosquito Bridge murder case: Sentencing set for July 25

Nicholas James Denham was found guilty Tuesday of the first-degree murder of Placerville resident Gerald Cody Ludden. An El Dorado County jury of nine men and three women convicted Denham, 30, of Ludden’s first-degree murder and also found him guilty of carjacking and robbery. The body of the 33-year-old Ludden was found by hikers below […]

Planning tips offered for Eldorado National Forest 4th of July

The U.S. Forest Service is preparing for the usual 4th of July crowds that come to the Eldorado National Forest, despite the unusual amount of snow in the higher elevations this year. “Many of the popular campgrounds are open and ready for campers,” said Eldorado National Forest Recreation Officer Lester Lubetkin. “However, the following campgrounds […]

Trio suspected of deer poaching

A suspected deer poaching ring was busted Thursday when three Stockton men were arrested after returning from a suspected all-night poaching trip in El Dorado County, according to the state’s Department of Fish and Game. Accused of killing deer and selling the meat for profit are Thongseuth Khounchanh, 57, Ti Sila, 51, and Bouneluna Sysenglath, […]

Statewide sales tax to decrease July 1

Companies and individuals who collect sales tax received notice from the Board of Equalization June 27 that the 1 percentage point increase in sales tax passed in 2009 will expire June 30 as originally set. For the past two years, the sales tax in El Dorado County has been 8.25 percent. In the cities of […]

GDPUD narrows budget options

Unless money is flowing in like the 2011 Sierra Nevada summer runoff, balancing a budget requires difficult decisions. When the parties involved have radically different perspectives, the deliberations are often contentious. The special meeting of the Board of Directors of Georgetown Divide Public Utility District June 24 was a perfect example. The board had done […]

Supervisors hold last hearing on reapportionment

One overriding principle informs the entire process of redistricting — also called reapportionment. All new districts must be equal in population. Every other consideration is very much secondary to the primacy of equality of numbers. El Dorado County supervisors conducted a final public hearing Monday to reduce the number of alternative maps, some configuration of […]

Grand jury recommends Sheriff’s Dept. policy changes

In its third and final analysis of the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department, the 2010-11 Grand Jury Report advises several cost-cutting measures for a department that accounts for roughly one-fifth of the county’s General Fund budget. The report acknowledges that the department has undergone “substantial budget reductions” over the past three years, but indicates there are still […]

Heard over the back fence: Reunion for ’75-’80 Cougars

PESSIMIST SHIRT: Thanks to John Chapman, the following T-shirt statement is presented: “I’d like to be an optimist, but I doubt it would work.” • • • REUNION FOR EDHS 1975-1980 CLASSES: The El Dorado High School Alumni for the classes of 1975 to 1980 are invited to attend a class reunion on Saturday, July 16, at […]


Key facts in the “River rescue saves South County kayaker” story from the Monday, June 26, edition of the Mountain Democrat were not known until after press time. Responders from the Pioneer Fire Protection District — including Chief Bob Gill and volunteer firefighter Phil Dayton — were first on the scene during for the rescue attempt. Also, […]

Another EDH home burned

Flames ripped through a Vista Mar Drive home Monday afternoon, destroying the two-story residence and burning some of the nearby open space and a spot on a neighbor’s lawn. The El Dorado Hills Fire Department got the call at 1:49 p.m. and when firefighters arrived at the home, “It was well involved. (The fire) was […]

Motorcyclist dies on Wentworth Springs Rd.

STUMPY MEADOWS — An Elk Grove man was killed Sunday morning when he lost control of his speeding motorcycle on Wentworth Springs Road, an official with the California Highway Patrol said. Placerville area CHP officer Dan Stark said Christopher Austria, 42, died Sunday at 11:40 a.m. when he was thrown from his Kawasaki ZX-250 while […]

Youth Explore the Outdoors at Nature Camps in Coloma and El Dorado Hills

Calling all campers: Youth ages 6-11 are invited to explore the outdoors at Nature Camp in Coloma or El Dorado Hills. For over 20 years, the American River Conservancy’s Nature Camps have provided youth the opportunity to explore the outdoors while learning about science and nature. In Coloma, this summer’s theme Energized by Nature addresses […]

State health official offers tips for staying cool in summer’s heat

SACRAMENTO – With the arrival of summer and hot weather, Dr. Ron Chapman, director of the California Department of Public Health, is encouraging California residents to follow these top-10 helpful tips to stay safe this summer: 1. Reduce exposure to the sun from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. when UV rays are strongest, and keep […]

Forest Service urges 4th of July safety

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — With the busy 4th of July holiday approaching, the U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit asks residents and visitors to help protect public safety and the environment. Forest Service officials ask that the public keep wildfire prevention in mind during 4th of July celebrations. Despite the fact that snow remains […]

Free Fishing Day is Saturday, July 2

The California Department of Fish and Game invites anglers to celebrate Independence Day by fishing in California’s spectacular waters. Saturday, July 2, is the first of California’s two 2011 Free Fishing Days (the other will be Sept. 3), when people can try their hand at fishing without having to buy a sport fishing license. All […]

Sheriff’s Office hours change

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office lobby and records window hours have been increased to better assist the public with their needs. The former, curtailed hours were imposed due to budget restraints, which severely limited the public access to vital services. The new Sheriff’s Department lobby and records window hours are: Monday–Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 […]

’Bye to the badge: CHP Officer of Year retires

Nearly 29 years ago, Denise Foster began her career with the California Highway Patrol. Now, in a matter of days, the woman who was the 2010 recipient of the Placerville area CHP’s “Officer of the Year” award will be hanging up her badge. Foster, 59, is creeping up on the mandatory retirement age of 60. […]

Criminal annals, part 122: Chilean drama, burned towns and tragic mishaps

Moving on to the Sept. 20, 1852, edition of the Sacramento “Daily Union,” we find under “Calaveras Correspondence” an altercation between some Chileans and a young American. “Calaveras Correspondence. “Jackson, Sept. 18, 1852 “Messrs. Editors: –  To-day being the anniversary of Chilean Independence, a large number of that nation congregated in our village, for the […]

River rescue saves South County kayaker

FAIR PLAY — A kayaker was rescued early Friday morning after becoming separated from his friends the night before. El Dorado County sheriff’s Lt. Bryan Golmitz said a German-born kayaker, whose name was not available as of press time, was injured Thursday night while kayaking down the Middle Fork of the Cosumnes River. The California […]

EDH Fire board president responds to grand jury

El Dorado Hills Fire Board President Greg Durante issued the following statement in response to the 2010-11 El Dorado County Grand Jury Report: “I have assigned the report to a committee and will provide a detailed response to their findings and recommendations in the next 60 days. That is our opportunity to correct misstatements and clarify district […]

7-8-11 Childbirth education classes in PV

THE STORK IS COMING: A class titled “Childbirth Education” is scheduled for Saturday, July 30, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., in Placerville. This class is a condensed, fast- paced childbirth class that will focus on the stages of labor, medical options, and pain management. The class is designed for pregnant women and their partners. […]

7-8-11 New officers for Shakespeare Club

NEW LEADERS – FUTURISTIC GOALS: The Placerville Shakespeare Club recently installed the following officers for 2011-1012: President – Joan Geel; 1st Vice President – Janice Masterton; 2nd Vice President – Joyce Francies; 3rd Vice President – Raelene Nunn; Secreary – Merrilee Heffernan; General Fund Treasurer – Edna Knutsen; Renovation Fund Treasurer – Kathy Walter; Mollie […]

Grand Jury scorches EDH Fire Dept.

El Dorado County’s 2010-11 Grand Jury delivered a scathing review of the El Dorado Hills Fire Department, calling it “top-heavy,” “over compensated,” “inflexible” and out of step with the realities of what its firefighters do on a daily basis. The June 10 report accuses the district of “overspending … despite receiving a disproportionate amount of […]

Group cares for soldiers’ pets

EL DORADO — There are a lot of things to take care of when a soldier is deployed, a lot of things to worry about. One of the biggest concerns is what to do with their pets. Sometimes a friend can be found to pet-sit, sometimes the only options are an expensive boarding kennel or […]

County not in market for mitigation lands

El Dorado County supervisors backed each other up Tuesday afternoon to reject any notion that the county should acquire more land in order to mitigate environmental losses due to future development. The issue was raised during a presentation by Development Services Director Roger Trout. On the agenda to ask the board to approve a request […]

Forest chief leaving

Eldorado National Forest Supervisor Ramiro Villalvazo was selected by U.S. Forest Service Pacific Southwest Regional Forester Randy Moore to be the regional director of public services headquartered in Vallejo. He began his new position on June 20. “These five years as forest supervisor have been the most challenging and rewarding of my 30-year career,” said […]

County employee’s meds use attracts scrutiny

Over the course of at least four years, an employee of the county of El Dorado received “an alarming amount of highly addictive prescription medication totaling roughly  $50,000 per month.” Thus states the El Dorado County Grand Jury in its 2011 report. The bill topped out at $2.4 million; however, the county’s prescription insurance provider, […]

4th of July closures set

Some offices throughout El Dorado County will be closed, Monday, July 4, for Independence Day, a national holiday. Here’s a look at what local residents may expect: All schools in El Dorado County will be closed . All Placerville city offices will be closed on Monday, July 4, for the holiday and the previous Friday, […]

Historical Advisory Committee members sought

The Placerville City Council invites individuals who are interested in preservation of historical resources, including buildings, structures, objects, monuments and markers as a legacy to future generations, to apply for membership on the Historical Advisory Committee by June 30. The Historical Advisory Committee was originally established by the City Council in 1980 and one of […]

Heard over the back fence: Hike to Camino with ARC

HOW TO BECOME RICH: Maryellen Ware of Diamond Springs provided the following T-shirt statement: “There are 2 ways to be rich – Make More or desire less.” • • • HIKING IS FOR THE DOGS, TOO: American River Conservancy officials report that an El Dorado Trail hike is scheduled for Saturday, July 2, from 8:30 a.m. to […]

Redevelopment in suspended animation

On June 15 California state legislators approved a budget with two trailering bills — one that eliminated redevelopment agencies throughout the state, and the other which allowed redevelopment agencies to remain as long as they contribute their share of $1.7 billion for schools, fire districts, law enforcement and other local services. Gov. Jerry Brown promptly […]

Grand jury: Leadership needed for mental health crises

Although El Dorado County has taken steps forward since the March 2010 shooting death of escaped mental patient Linda Clark, an overall lack of leadership structure threatens to undo the county’s progress, according to the latest grand jury report. On March 28, 2010, Folsom woman Linda Clark was shot dead by authorities after escaping from […]

Criminal Annals 121: Lynching in Ione Valley, big nugget found on Middle Fork

Moving on to the Sept. 18, 1852, edition of the Sacramento “Daily Union,” we find under “Calaveras Correspondence “ the lynching of two horse thieves. Following that is a report of a huge piece of gold found in northern El Dorado county. “Calaveras Correspondence. “Lynching in the Mines – Two Mexican Horse thieves Hung at […]

Old documents come back home

In February, Adam Clark received an email from a man named Stephen Gregg asking whether the Judge George H. Thompson House was still standing at 32 Cedar Ravine. Clark, a criminal defense lawyer who has an office in the Judge Thompson Professional Building at 3062 Cedar Ravine had never heard of Stephen Gregg. “I wasn’t […]

Camino woman a newspaper reader since 1949

Nana Federici likes to stay current. Born in 1931, Helen Federici, who goes by Nana (pronounced “Nonna”) and her late husband, John Federici Sr., enjoyed keeping up with local news by reading the Mountain Democrat since they married in 1949. “Our family has been reading the Mountain Democrat for 90 years,” she said. John’s parents […]

3-way stop due at intersection

RESCUE — The El Dorado County Department of Transportation will be placing temporary stop signs at the corner of North Shingle Road and Green Valley Road in Rescue during this week. The temporary stop signs will create an all-way stop configuration at the intersection, which is anticipated to remain in place until traffic signals are […]

7-4-11 “Joy of Painting” class offered at PV Sr. Center

PAINTING DELIGHT: A class titled the “Joy of Painting” is being offered on July 16, from noon to 3 p.m., at the Placerville Senior Center, 937 Spring St., Placerville. Participants will experience the Bob Ross wet-on-wet method of painting and will complete their own master piece in just one session. The cost for this class […]

Cameron Park Newcomers plan garage sale

Cameron Park Newcomers will have a garage sale 8 a.m.-2 p.m. June 24-25  at 3226 Perlett Drive across from Rasmussen Park. The event will benefit the Reach Out Program, which was established to give help immediately and short-term to anyone who can show need in our area.