News Archive

News Archive (6192)


Amador County – Jackson Rancheria CEO Rich Hoffman is host of the Jackson Rancheria Big Movie of the Week every Thursday at 5 p.m. on cable channel “ThisTV Sacramento.” Each week Hoffman introduces the Big Movie and offers fun facts, trivia questions, reviews and more from the “Jackson Rancheria hermetically sealed film bunker.”

Local viewers are familiar with Rich Hoffman as the face and voice for Jackson Rancheria’s TV and radio ads. He’s well known for his extensive wardrobe, from wildly colored golf outfits to a chef, cowboy and Santa. You never know what he’ll be wearing or what he’ll be doing. Watch for various outfits to compliment the Big Movie of the Week.

Upcoming Big Movies include Exodus (June 21), Mr. Brooks, The Russia House, Bright Lights, Big City, Home of the Brave (July 19 and Lions for Lambs.

ThisTV is Sacramento’s only free cable movie channel and is associated with KQCA Channel 58.

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Tuesday, 19 June 2012 02:56

Jackson approves tractor supply sign exemption

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Amador County – Jackson City Council on Monday, June 11, approved an exemption for Tractor Supply Company for the new company to have 180-square feet of signs on its building, being constructed next to Raley’s grocery store.

The Council unanimously approved the exemption to allow two 90 square foot signs, one on the front and one on the back of the building, on French Bar Road. City Manager Mike Daly said it was felt that it would not be any kind of visual issue.

Daly said the Tractor Supply Company’s manager wants to meet with him next week, and they plan an Aug. 4 official opening.

The sign complies in all other ways with city sign code, including channel lettering, back-lit lettering, and being limited to only having a logo and company name lettering. Daly said it is a bit large for the ordinance. For time reasons, the request for an exemption was taken by the company directly to the City Council.

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Amador County – The National Weather Service of Sacramento announced unseasonably hot temperatures are expected in the region this weekend, starting Friday, June 8.

Valley temperatures of 98-105 degrees could be expected Saturday and Sunday, and 90-100s in the foothills. Gusts in the northern Sacramento Valley could be 20-30 mph Friday and Saturday. Those planning outdoor activities should be prepared for above normal temperatures, and be aware that fire danger in many areas may become critical, due to heat, and low humidity.

Humidity could be down to single digits, and overnight humidity recovery is only expected to be poor to moderate. Lighter winds are expected Sunday but humidity values will remain quite low.

Slightly cooler temperatures and lighter winds are expected Monday and into next week.

Pacific Gas & Electric urged customers to prepare for rising temperatures and extreme fire danger, with 100-to-105-degree temperatures in interior valley locations and dry northerly winds in foothill regions. Heat related outage activity is possible over the weekend, but a major heat wave is not expected.

Power demand during hot summer weather can overload electrical equipment causing power outages, which occur when circuit breakers or other protective equipment shut off the flow of power in order to prevent further damage to the electrical system.

To stay cool and safe, stay in the shade. Direct sunlight can speed up the effect the heat has on your body. Do outdoor activities in the morning or evening hours, and avoid being in the afternoon heat.

Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, even if you are not thirsty. Avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol. A cool shower or bath is a great way to stay cool and much more effective than using an electric fan. Also, wear loose-fitting, lightweight clothing. If you are outside, don’t forget to wear a hat or carry an umbrella to protect your head and neck. Wear sunscreen to protect skin and reduce the risk of sunburn, which affects your body’s ability to cool itself.

PG&E recommended ways to stay cool and still save energy. Keep thermostats at 78° when at home and at 85° when away. Those who are elderly, frail, or sensitive to extreme heat, should lower their thermostat to a cool and comfortable level to avoid a heat-related illness.

Keep many bottles of water in the refrigerator, switch off unnecessary lights, avoid using appliances during the peak heat of the day, use a microwave to heat food instead of an oven. Set pool pumps to run during off-peak hours of the day and use energy-efficient products.

PG&E provides cash rebates for select equipment. See rebates or call the Smarter Energy Line at 1(800) 933-9555.

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Amador County – Adam Dalton this week reported that the work of the Amador County Park Restoration project is reaching an end in Volcano, with support from local residents of the area, in the project led by Dalton and the Jackson Band of Miwuk Indians.

Dalton said the tasks are too numerous to list, and people should “come see this amazing transformation” of Volcano for themselves.

The people of Volcano have been so good to the work crew, he said, extending appreciation to Richard and Tom for work help and Debbie Dunn “for continually feeding and taking such good care of our crew.” Appreciation was also due to the Union Inn Restaurant, which provided fresh, hot meals on many occasions, with more generosity than he could have imagined.

Another supporter, Bobby Wurm volunteerd time and effort and was “a true brother to my family,” Dalton said. He also thanked Ruth Gottstein of the Upcountry paper, “who wrote a very nice story about my family.”

Dalton thanked the wonderful folks of Volcano for their friendship and support. He said: “I hope that what we’ve accomplished here together has created many wonderful memories and will help make a difference in your lives, because it surely made a difference in ours.”

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Amador County – The Amador County Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 Tuesday to “encumber” $15,000 in economic development funds until it hears from two organizations that were asked to consolidate.

Amador Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Ron Mittelbrunn asked for the $15,000 “to increase our visibility to the outside world,” to update their website and “get the word out.” AEDC’s Doug Ketron said the request was for last year’s budget funds “to help AEDC get over the hump.” He said they had tried unsuccessfully to meet with the Amador Business Council, which Supervisors last year asked to consider consolidating with AEDC, but he said he left the door open to them.

County Administrative Officer Chuck Iley said Supervisors asked AEDC and ABC to work together and if they give AEDC the money, the Business Council gets none. He said the funds could be encumbered and held over to the next fiscal year.

Supervisor John Plasse said he did try to expedite the consolidation, as a non-voting member of AEDC, and attendee of Business Council meetings. He said the two groups signed an MOU and are now looking at consolidating into a single entity, but that has not come to pass, and “it makes it difficult to reward a lack of accomplishment.” He said he has supported economic development, but not any one organization.

Supervisor Vice Chairman Richard Forster said they can encumber the funds without mention of a specific group, and they voted to do so, and hold the funds pending results of consolidation. The motion also allowed for distribution of the funds at the board’s discretion.

Plasse said the line item was for economic development activities the county wishes to fund. Some goes to Amador Council of Tourism, the Chamber of Commerce and the State Fair Booth.

Forster said Mittelbrunn has been active in the past in trying to recruit businesses to the Carbondale Industrial Park, and has “been successful until they see the lack of infrastructure, and lose out to the 99 corridor.” Ketron said they have been looking at sewer and power for Sierra West Business Park, but first must have facilities there.

Mittelbrunn said AEDC gives loans for new construction but has not had a loan in three years. Ketron said AEDC’s role is business expansion and retention. They renegotiate financing, get Small Business Administration loans and help businesses stay open and remain in the county. He said they need policy from Supervisors to make the county as hospitable as possible.

Supervisor Ted Novelli said he knew of a couple of businesses that were kept open thanks to AEDC. Forster said the county could help AEDC with office space and a phone, and Novelli said support could also come from Information Technology. Mittelbrunn said his board declined the generous offer to remain separate from county government.

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Amador County – The Golden Empire Council of the Boy Scouts of America is planning a luncheon to honor Jackson Mayor Patrick Crew on June 20, when it presents a report on the State of Scouting in the community.

Judge Susan Harlan from the Amador Superior Court will serve as Master of Ceremonies for the second annual “Report to the Community” celebration of Scouting.

Started in 1910, the Boy Scouts of America has served millions of youths across the country and currently serves nearly 200 youths in the communities of Amador County. The proceeds of the second annual luncheon will offset the cost for Scouts to attend summer camps and the National Scout Jamboree in 2013 while providing more opportunities for new youths to join scouting.

Boy Scouts District Executive Brian Casper said the “luncheon is sponsored by Stan Lukowicz, an Amador County local business owner and humanitarian, and we expect a solid turnout of local business and community leaders to help our local scouts attend summer camps.”

Casper said: “It is vital we provide more opportunities for young people to join Scouting,” which is “an organization that has influenced more than 110 million lives during the past 102 years.”

There is no charge to attend the luncheon. All attendees will be asked to contribute whatever they believe is appropriate to the Golden Empire Council of the Boy Scouts of America which oversees more than 18,000 scouts in northern California, including all of Amador County. Table sponsorships are still available at $500 per table.

The luncheon is from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, June 20 at Thomi’s Café Banquet Room in Jackson.

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Friday, 15 June 2012 01:28

Amador High School gets a new principal

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Amador County – Amador High School has a new principal effective for the 2012-2013 school year. Amador County Unified School District on Wednesday announced the hiring of a new principal at Amador High, Jared Critchfield.

Superintendent of Schools Dick Glock said Jared Critchfield has been named the new principal of Amador High, and Critchfield is a local graduate, entering his fifth year with Amador Unified.

Glock said Critchfield is a very popular teacher at Amador High School, ending his fourth year there as a Spanish teacher. Glock said the reason he is very popular is because he is very effective.

The School District actually had two local high school graduates apply for the Amador principal position, and Glock said they tried to get a person with deep interests and ties to Amador County into the position. They succeeded, in hiring Critchfield, who was one of the local graduates who applied. He said Critchfield is a 1999 graduate of Argonaut High School.

Former principal Laurie Amick left the position at Amador High at the end of this school year after two years and will return to Ione Elementary School as its principal, which position she had held before taking the top administrator position at Amador. Ione Elementary School had an opening for principal, Glock and the school wanted her back, so Amick is the new principal at Ione Elementary.

Butch Wagner was also named the new principal for the new Educational Options Program, which will cover alternative school, court school, and adult education programs. At Amador High, Kaleb Cagle was named Athletic Director, in a part time position.

Also Wednesday, the School District board of trustees received a report of gifts to the district that included $27,000 in donations to the Laura Spinetta Library Fund. For graduation, Thomi’s Café and Bakery also donated breakfast for all graduating seniors. And the Jackson Rancheria Band of Miwuk Indians donated baseball and softball equipment and materials for the field upkeep to Argonaut High School.

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Amador County – Amador County Supervisors on Tuesday passed a preliminary budget with notes on the economic climate of the county, the state and the world.

Mark Bennett of Pine Grove thanked supervisors for keeping its reserves, and coming up with a reasonable budget. He said looking at bankruptcies and bleak economy, the economic problems are structural. He said gold mining permitting that took 8 years in Amador County could have been finished in 1-and-a-1/2 years in Canada.

Supervisor Brian Oneto said “we have regulated our economy to death. Everybody wants to live in Utopia but if you can’t survive in it, what good is it?” He said he did not take pleasure in laying off people, but “we’re here to keep the county in good financial health,” and though reduced, the county will sill get the services they are mandated to provide.

Supervisor Chairman Louis Boitano said “things in Sacramento are broke, and they don’t seem to be making anything better.” He said “the world economy is teetering on the edge.”

Supervisor Ted Novelli said this board knows it is detrimental to the county to lay anybody off. And regarding shoving things down the county’s throat, this governor keeps shoving the Bullet Train down our throat.”

Novelli said he closes three Amtrak stations and is spending $30 billion dollars, but it will not even cover people in regards to going from Point A to Point B. Novelli said Amtrak could go 100 mph if they fixed the bridges and tracks. And will the Amtrak employees be laid off? You better believe they will.”

Supervisor John Plasse said he has seen local level organizations oppose the entire timber harvesting industry, oppose any timber or mining of any kind, whether it is gold or aggregate, and yet the same people stand on the corner with an “Occupy” sign and “say the system is broken.” Plasse said they oppose the things that generate sales tax, property tax appreciation and they oppose all of the things that create income. He said tax revenue does not come from the government it comes from the private sector.

Doug Ketron of Amador Economic Development Corporation spoke on related matters later in the meeting. He said California ranks 50th of the 50 states in desirability to do business in. He said Ione has 100 different kinds of refractory glass. Amador County has lignite for wax, and aggregate, and yet it is cheaper to mine material in Canada and ship it to San Francisco than it is to open a mine in Amador County.

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Amador County – The Amador Business Council on Tuesday said it would pick up the cost to pursue a Transient Occupancy Tax increase for hotels and motels, and Amador County Supervisors approved language for a draft ballot measure, to consider at its next meeting June 26.

Supervisor Vice Chairman Richard Forster said: “I would like to hear that we will have support from the business community,” and he didn’t want to waste $10,000 to $20,000 it would cost to put it on the ballot.

Amador Business Council’s Al Bozzo said the strongest revenue stream right now is agri-tourism, and the opportunity is enormous. Bozzo said the Business Council already has commitments for some money, and the Amador Business Council is picking up the cost of the education campaign, through its member contributions.

Business Council member Jim Gullett said they would need to mount an organized campaign, with a cost estimated at $30,000 to market it. Supervisor John Plasse said if the business community is fully willing to raise the lions share to educate the electorate, and willing to run that significant risk, this board would take on the cost to print the ballot.

Supervisors voted 4-1 to direct staff to write up the draft ballot measure.

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Amador County – Robin Valencia, executive director of the Amador County Child Abuse Prevention Council said she is stepping down this month and her organization will be taken over by First 5 Amador.

Valencia said: “I am leaving the council this month to go full-time with Amador Transit.” She said First 5 Amador, directed by Nina Machado, “will assume the coordination and administrative functions of the council effective July 1.

Valencia said the “upcoming changes will afford the stability, structure and infrastructure for the council to grow in new ways, and expand outreach and educational opportunities for First 5.” She said it was “a win-win for both organizations.”

She said: Working for the Child Abuse Prevention Council “has been a great and rewarding position for me. I feel so fortunate to have been paid to do work for a cause I am so passionate about, to meet and work with so many wonderful people in our community and, I am proud of the accomplishments we have made over the last seven years.”

She was also excited about the “new challenges and opportunities with Amador Transit, working to increase the accessibility of public transportation for our community.”

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