SMUD’s Iowa Hill project still in assessment phase

Like a slow-moving glacier, work continues on the Iowa Hill hydroelectric project but at a deliberate pace that will ultimately be reckoned in decades. Called a pumped-storage system, the project, when built, will add to the Sacramento Municipal Utility District’s electrical generation and storage capacity. Located a few miles northwest of Camino, the project got its start in 2001 […]

Fatal wrecks claim 3 lives

Three vehicle-related incidents in El Dorado County ended tragically this past week. Pedestrian killed EL DORADO — An 81-year-old woman died two days after she was hit by a car on Aug. 10. At approximately 10:02 a.m. that day Barbara Bunch of Camino was walking across Pleasant Valley Road, just east of Church Street, when she was […]

Wildfire destroys homes, vehicles

GARDEN VALLEY — Three mobile homes, one occupied and two empty, two sheds and 10 vehicles were destroyed in a 3-acre fire that broke out at 11:45 a.m. Monday on Mt. Murphy Road.

Resources included 15 engines, four water tenders, two fire crews, one bulldozer, two helicopters and and air tankers. Fire crews and emergency officials from Georgetown, Garden Valley, El Dorado County, El Dorado Hills, Rescue, Diamond Springs, El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department, California Highway Patrol and the U.S. Forest Service responded to the blaze.

Supervisors use rare eminent domain

El Dorado County supervisors voted unanimously Aug. 11 to begin condemnation proceedings in order to acquire by eminent domain two small parcels of land needed for rights of way on two bridge projects. Each action required a separate hearing recommended by the Community Development Agency’s Transportation Division. The first item involved an eight-tenths of an acre […]

Sierra forest acquisition aims at fewer wildfires, more water

In the wake of massive wildfires across drought-stricken California, the American River Conservancy, The Nature Conservancy and Northern Sierra Partnership have announced the acquisition of 10,115 acres of forest in the fire-endangered Sierra Nevada. Now protected, this massive watershed — referred to as the American River Headwaters — will serve as a living laboratory for scientists to […]

Missing Tahoe paddle boarder found alive

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — The previously unidentified man who went missing on Lake Tahoe on Aug. 12 has been located alive and currently visiting the state of Missouri. Zbigniew “Zibi” Moryn has been in contact with South Lake Tahoe police officials, reporting he is safe. Investigators received numerous tips from the public who had been following the […]

Dementia caregivers offered training next Monday

El Dorado County Senior Day Care Services is hosting a free training for family caregivers of people with dementia from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Aug. 24 at the Senior Center, 990 Lassen Lane in El Dorado Hills. The “Art Reflections for Dementia Caregivers” training provides research-proven techniques that use art to awaken memories, strengthen relationships […]

Police find hash oil lab

A suspicious pedestrian reportedly led Placerville police officers to a hash oil lab Wednesday evening. Officers conducting a routine pedestrian stop at 1296 Broadway on Aug. 12 found Nicholas Adams, 32, with a case of new butane bottles on his person, according to police officials. Adams had allegedly lied to the police about his identity when contacted. The […]

Judge pulled from duty

El Dorado County District Attorney officials have excluded El Dorado County Superior Court Judge Dylan Sullivan from proceedings until further notice. DA officials cite California Civil Code 170.6 to back up their action. The code states, “A judge, court commissioner or referee of a superior court of the state of California shall not try a civil […]

‘Terrorizing’ cell tower put on hold

Trying to reconcile what some argued are incompatible land uses occupied most of the El Dorado County Planning Commission’s meeting on Aug. 13 with one of the most contentious issues the siting of a new Verizon cell tower in Mosquito. Deemed a “terrorist” structure by one property owner who claimed it would cause “immense distress among the members of […]

Mosquito shooting: Stetler enters plea

Shooting suspect David Stetler pleaded not guilty in court late last week. The 35-year-old man is accused of shooting another man, identified in court as Mr. West, 46, in Mosquito on July 27. Stetler told authorities Mr. West approached him with a club like object, or “branch,” and assaulted him. Fearing for his safety, Stetler allegedly shot […]

EID’s water supply updated; directors get legislative update

An updated water supply report was received by the El Dorado Irrigation District Board of Directors at its Aug. 10 meeting. Prepared annually, staff said the district can count on 63,500 acre-feet of water supplies 95 percent of the time. Sources of the 63,500 acre-feet include 15,080 from Forebay; 21,000 from Jenkinson Lake; 7,550 from a U.S. Bureau of Reclamation […]

Animal lovers needed: Shelter’s kitty crowd, especially older kitties, wants homes

Even Bullet the one-eyed tabby cat appears pleased as all get-out at El Dorado County Animal Services these days, flipping and flopping on the front counter as he says hello to visitors.

The animal shelter at 6435 Capitol Ave. in Diamond Springs that opened its doors almost a year ago has proved a great fit for critters and caretakers alike. It’s a long way from being the “pound” anymore.

“They say, ‘If you build it, they will come,’ and that’s been true for us,” said Henry Brzezinski, chief of El Dorado County Animal Services. “We’ve had people bringing in the animals, especially kittens right now — but then again, we’ve had more people coming here wanting to adopt.”

Heard over the back fence: Car Show and Party

GAME DAY FOR SENIORS:
 Senior Game Day is scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 25 at 10 a.m. at the Cameron Park Community Center, 2502 Country Club Drive. Several board games will be offered for play. Stop by and create some new friendships. For more information call (530) 677-2231. CAR SHOW AND PARTY:
 Plan now to attend the […]

Prisoners riot; one killed

California Department of Corrections FOLSOM — California State Prison-Sacramento administrators are investigating the cause of a riot that occurred Wednesday afternoon during which inmate Hugo Pinell, 71, was killed and several others were injured. At 12:55 p.m., approximately 70 inmates started fighting on one of the institution’s maximum-security general population yards. Inmate-made weapons were used […]

Public comment weighted toward State of Jefferson

Two opposing groups — proponents of the State of Jefferson movement and opponents represented by the relatively new organization called Keep It California — presented their platforms and after each presentation it was the public’s turn at the microphone. El Dorado County Board of Supervisors Chairman Brian Veerkamp said the board’s general guidelines, calling for […]

‘Jeffersons’ explain why they want their own state

Sheriff John D’Agostini as the first speaker on behalf of, if not directly for, the State of Jefferson.

“It is only an issue of representation,” D’Agostini began. “Our representatives have no voice in (state government). We have two representatives, and Los Angeles County has 22. How do we fix the issue of rural representation? We need to ask to be at the table.”

Later, citing a familiar maxim introduced to supervisors years ago by former District 5 Supervisor Norma Santiago, he got a laugh noting, “If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.”

Sewer blockage causes spill

A blockage the size of a hand-towel apparently caused Placerville city sewer lines to block up for a little more than a half-hour Sunday, causing the spillage of some 950 gallons of raw sewage into Cedar Ravine Creek. City Public Works Operations Manager Rick Ferriera said the blockage was reported at 10:45 a.m. from a […]

SOJ opponents: Seceding would leave county ‘cash poor’

Though a majority attending Tuesday evening’s meeting supported the State of Jefferson movement, the event actually began with speakers from the Keep It California group who “advocate for rural California but oppose breaking away.” Citing common cause on “several issues,” and fully acknowledging that rural representation is a real problem, KIC representatives said, “We’d like to work […]

Report: Kidnapping victim goes for wild ride

A 32-year-old man from Placerville told El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies that three men took his 2007 gold Hyundai for a wild ride while he was in the back seat coming down from a heroin high, officials said. The victim made the report last Saturday morning, reportedly telling deputies that he and his friends took a joy ride […]

Paddle board found; man missing

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Aug. 12 at around 10:15 p.m. officers responded to a suspicious circumstance call associated with a missing person.  An unoccupied stand up paddle board, equipped with a GoPro camera, a selfie stick and a life jacket had been found by a boater on Lake Tahoe between 4:30 and 5 p.m. The board was […]

Joseph Hinds hearing delayed

A trial setting conference for the man accused of non-fatally shooting his father-in-law was rescheduled for Sept. 14. Joseph Hinds appeared in El Dorado County Superior Court Judge James Wagoner’s courtroom Monday residing. He’s in custody at the El Dorado County Jail in lieu of $175,00 bail. The 33-year-old entered a not guilty plea to a charge of […]

Heard over the back fence: Wine, food and music

CHECK OUT YOUR GENES:
 Roots and Gold Dust Genealogical Society’s monthly meeting will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 1 p.m. at the Family History Center in the Church of Latter-day Saints building, 3275 Cedar Ravine, Placerville. There will be round discussion groups “to discover what, when and why, how we’re all in this […]

Heard overthe back fence: Hangtown Car Show

HOME DELIVERED MEALS:
 Homebound adults 60 years or older who are medically or physically disabled may qualify for home delivery of senior meals. Contact (530) 621-6160 for more information. GET THOSE RINGERS READY:
 The El Dorado Community Hall Horseshoe Tournament is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 15 at the El Dorado Community Hall in the township […]

Oak Ridge High School ready for student surge

EL DORADO HILLS — A chorus of greeters could be heard from blocks away Monday morning as Oak Ridge students returned to school. Principal Paul Burke and student Link Crew members clad in matching blue shirts welcomed each student who walked into the school’s main entrance with rousing cheers and high fives. “It’s always fun,” Burke said […]

Falling tree kills firefighter

U.S. Forest Service firefighter Michael Hallenbeck, 21, of Shingle Springs died Saturday afternoon when he was struck by a falling tree while fighting a wildfire just south of Echo Summit.

Hallenbeck was a member of the Organized Crew 36 on the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit.

Split decision to sell reservoir

After an earlier attempt to close the deal failed, the El Dorado Irrigation District board voted 3-2 at its Aug. 10 meeting to approve the sale of the Blakeley Reservoir, deciding that a bird in hand is worth two in the bush. At previous meetings in June and July, staff recommended selling the 36-acre property for $51,000. Seemingly priced […]

Mom killed in rollover

A 33-year-old Georgetown woman died in an apparent DUI crash Sunday night. Rachelle Piparo was killed after her husband Joseph Piparo, 33, allegedly driving while intoxicated, crashed the 1998 silver Dodge pickup he was driving westbound on Wentworth Springs Road at approximately 10:25 p.m. on Aug. 9, according to California Highway Patrol officials. The pickup was pulling a flat-bed […]

California Department of Fish and Wildlife hatchery drought challenges

The Rooster Tails Fishing Club’s monthly breakfast meeting will be held on Friday, Aug. 21 at the Auburn Elks Lodge, 195 Pine St. at Lincoln Way in Auburn. The doors to the lodge open at 7 a.m. with a buffet breakfast served at 8 a.m. The Rooster Tails are delighted to host Andrew Hughan, public […]

It’s a pirate’s life for brave Tyler Armstrong

A perfect name for an amazing cause — Sweet Dreams Foundation, in partnership with several sponsors and volunteers, creates dream rooms for children who are ill. One lucky recipient is Tyler Armstrong from Diamond Springs. The 11-year-old was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in 2010. ALL is the most common form of childhood cancer, and affects the […]

Veterans groups come together

About 70 people packed Placerville Town Hall last Wednesday to learn more about veterans’ services. Congressman Tom McClintock hosted the event and encouraged everyone there who’s having issues with the Department of Veterans Affairs to call his office, saying his staff can help them “bird dog” their claims and help them fill out the paperwork to file an […]

County’s water use drizzles

The El Dorado Irrigation District reported that its customers reduced their water use by 34 percent in July compared to July 2013. This is the second month in a row EID customers have exceeded state-mandated reduction requirements. “EID’s customers continue to step up in their conservation practices,” said EID General Manager Jim Abercrombie. “We want […]

Body ID’d as missing rider

El Dorado County sheriff’s officials confirmed Friday that the body found off the OHV trail west of Slate Mountain earlier last week is missing rider Edward Cavanaugh. “The identification was done by a forensic odontologist, who compared Cavanaugh’s dental records to the upper and lower jaw bones found near his motorcycle.” said sheriff’s Lt. Tom Murdoch. The 45-year-old Bay […]

Murderer Swift pleads guilty

Tears and hugs followed murderer Anderson Swift’s sentencing Friday. El Dorado County Superior Court Judge James Wagoner sentenced the Oakland man to life in prison without parole for the murder of Khrista Ibarolle in El Dorado Hills on Jan. 7 and other crimes related to a crime spree that began with a carjacking in Oakland and ended with a vehicle crash in an El Dorado Hills neighborhood.

Team has golden adventure

The gold panning group representing El Dorado County at the 2015 World Gold Panning Championships in Spain, reported having a pretty fantastic time. Once they landed in Europe, trains and automobiles were lined up and off they went to Navelgas, located in north-eastern Spain, not far from the Bay of Biscay. Each year the gold […]

CDFW accepting grant proposals for water restoration programs

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is now accepting proposals for restoration projects that further the objectives of the California Water Action Plan. For fiscal year 2015-16, a total of $31.4 million in Proposition 1 funds will be made available through CDFW’s two Prop. 1 Restoration Grant Programs. The Watershed Restoration Grant Program will […]

CPCSD parks supervisor dies

Cameron Park Community Services District Parks Superintendent Paul Ryan died Wednesday morning. The 59-year-old had worked for the CPCSD since 1992. Staff issued the following statement regarding Ryan’s death. “Staff will miss him tremendously. Work will not be the same without Paul as he was more than a supervisor, he was a mentor and a […]

Intersection work begins

Beginning today motorists should expect delays at the intersection of Pleasant Valley Road and Oak Hill Road in Pleasant Valley as crews complete intersection improvements. The construction work will require lane closures with one-way reversing traffic control. The closures are necessary to ensure motorist and worker. Motorists are advised to slow down through the work zone and […]

Body found

Search for missing rider likely over El Dorado County sheriff’s officials have confirmed that a body was found in the area where missing rider Edward Cavanaugh went missing three weeks ago. At around 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 4, sheriff’s officials received a call from a searcher who reported finding a bike that matches the one […]

Friends, neighbors and law enforcement mingle

Miniature ponies, hot dogs, classic cars, bounce houses, firefighters, SWAT, police, music and games can only mean one thing: National Night Out.

The annual event, originated in 1984 and held on the first Tuesday in August, brought a plethora of people and law enforcement together to celebrate safety. Fifteen neighborhoods participated and four main locations —MORE, Placerville Library, Benham Park and Grocery Outlet — served as party headquarters.

SLT City Council finalizes vacation rental ordinance

Jack Barnwell SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Despite some objections from real estate interests and residents, the City Council approved its updated regulations for new vacation home rentals Tuesday. The council amended the ordinance at its Aug. 5 meeting to address some concerns council members had received since the first reading in July. Amendments included setting Oct. […]

Illegal immigrant crime by the numbers

The topic of crime committed by illegal immigrants with criminal pasts has become front page news of late with the murder of two California law enforcement officers and a woman in San Francisco. Yet the amount of crime committed by illegals is not new. A study released in 2011 by the Government Accounting Office reported on incarcerations, arrests and […]

Slain deputy’s wife supports immigration reform, creates foundation

El Dorado County resident Susan Oliver has joined the illegal immigration debate, speaking up about the Davis-Oliver Act, an immigration enforcement bill named after her husband Sacramento County Sheriff’s Deputy Danny Oliver and Placer County Sheriff’s Det. Michael Davis Jr. who were killed in the line of duty last year. Accused murderer Luis Bracamontes, AKA Marcelo Marquez, an […]

Community Corps crew fighting fires includes Placerville man

Placerville resident Andrew Standridge, 20, has deployed on a two-week mission with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as a part of crew responding to wildland fires in California. Standridge, is a trained and certified wildland firefighter through the National Civilian Community Corps and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. After hearing about the National […]

Hasta la vista, DJ

• Vision Coalition leader retires When DJ Peterson is at a party, even his own party, you can bet he’s got a deck of cards in his pocket. Wearing a mischievous smile, he pulls them out and asks his wife Judi to select a card. She pulls out the 2 of diamonds. Holding it up high, the […]