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Solid Waste Authority Board criticized

The board of the Del Norte County Solid Waste Management Authority was criticized by community members during its regular meeting last week for failing to hire a new authority director, a position that has been vacant for nearly a year. 

“I’m having a difficult time wanting to recruit an executive director without a clear mission statement,” said authority chairman and Del Norte County Supervisor Roger Gitlin. “I appreciate the audience when they say, ‘Get to it.’ We are. But that is a process that takes time. It can’t be rushed.”

Fun run planned for August

Who would win a foot-race between the Silver Surfer and the Flash? What about Superman?

CASA Del Norte and the Crescent City Jaycees are working to put these debates to rest on Aug. 30 with the county’s first CASA Super Hero Fun Run/Walk starting at the Marine Mammal Center. Participants of all ages are invited to join in the fun by dressing up as their favorite superhero (or just wear their trusty old running apparel if they’d rather).

News of Record July 11–17

These are the misdemeanor and felony sentencings provided by the Del Norte County Superior Court for the dates of July 11–17:

Erin Leann Gericke, 33, Crescent City, was sentenced to 180 days in jail and three years of probation and fined $760 for possession of a firearm, possession of a controlled substance and possession of a dangerous drug.

Nichole EllenMarie Frye, 20, Grants Pass, was sentenced to 30 days in jail and one year of probation and fined $520 for possession of a narcotic.

Relay for Life rallies locals against cancer

Motorists driving by Del Norte High School likely don’t need a sign to tell them Relay for Life is this weekend.

This is because volunteers have festooned the trees alongside Mike Whalen Field with purple ribbon. Purple ribbon also adorns the steps of Java Hut near the fairgrounds and the fence bordering Chimney Kraft’s parking lot at U.S. Highway 101 and Northcrest Drive.

“Purple is the survivor color,” said Jeri Ann Evans Scherer, the 2014 event chair.

Library District under scrutiny

Public questions trustees on long absence of elections 

Community members have begun shining a light on the Del Norte County Library Board’s election process, and what’s been revealed beneath the electoral fog has the board fending off the same accusations of dishonesty and unprofessionalism that plague its recently publicized financial affairs. 

Issues surrounding the board’s formal election process, or rather its alleged lack of one, were a major cause of community concern at the Library District’s special meeting last week, echoing a 2011–2012 Del Norte Grand Jury report that concluded the process has been “bypassed” since 1990 — the last time a library trustee position has been on a local ballot. Like the library’s undisclosed fund balance, the two principal concerns surrounding library district elections — exactly how the board appoints new trustees to its ranks and why a Library Board position hasn’t gone to election in over two decades — have community members up in arms about how the board is run and its tendency to “skirt the rules,” as one community member said. 

Sheriff: Pot in bust was headed to Washington

Del Norte County Sheriff’s Office deputies seized 34 pounds of marijuana Tuesday night from two individuals the sheriff says were attempting to transport the pot to be sold in Washington state.

On his Facebook page, Sheriff Dean Wilson attributed the pot bust to Washington state’s legalization of recreational marijuana use.

Highway 101 crash claims life of Harbor man

Firefighters extricate Bradshaw from the pickup wreckage. WesCom News Service / Ryan Sparks
A Harbor man was killed Friday when his pickup truck drifted into oncoming traffic for an unknown reason and collided head-on with a motor home on Highway 101 at the Oregon-California border.

George C. Bradshaw, 80, was pronounced dead at the scene, and fire crews had to use the Jaws of Life to extract his body from the wrecked 2007 GMC Canyon pickup truck.

At 11 a.m, the truck collided with a 2000 Dutch Star motor home driven by Lue Allen Hahn, 72, of Fairbanks, Alaska.

The crash brought traffic in both directions to a standstill for several hours.

Pato Banton reggae concert: A ‘Passion to reach people’

Banton says he is coming to Crescent City to “spread some love” after he couldn’t find a venue in town during his last tour. He performs July 23 at the Elks Lodge.
Artist Pato Banton brings reggae’s positive vibrations to Elks Lodge next Wednesday, July 23

Grammy-nominated international reggae star Pato Banton will be bringing his blend of positive reggae vibrations to the Crescent City Elks Lodge on Wednesday, July 23, as part of a 50-state tour that’s not too big for small towns like Crescent City.

“I’ve been touring across America, and we really want to hit as many cities as possible — different cities, remote cities; cities that a lot of artists don’t go to,” Banton said in an interview with the Triplicate, the day after headlining the 2014 Surf Rodeo surf and music festival in Ventura.


New addition to the business

Company will expand Crescent City facility to take on lactose production 

Baird Rumiano watches demolition work begin Monday on an apartment complex where a lactose-processing plant will be built. Del Norte Triplicate / Bryant Anderson
Rumiano Cheese is expanding its business, but first the apartment complex next to the factory has to come down.

An excavator dug out huge chunks of the apartment building at 820 F St. on Monday, one of the early steps in a plan to launch the Crescent City cheese maker into the lactose business.

“That’s a pretty good size,” Rumiano Cheese owner Baird Rumiano said, watching the Caterpillar 325C hydraulic excavator as it prepared to demolish the apartment building on Monday. “More than enough.”

The apartment building, which Rumiano Cheese purchased in 2011 with expansion in mind, stood on a lot that Rumiano has planned for a new addition to the factory — an 8,000-square-foot building that will hold the state-of-the-art equipment used to isolate lactose. 

Caltrans agrees to study

Judge forces reassessment of hwy. work’s salmon impact 

In a lawsuit settlement reached last week, Caltrans has agreed to reassess the impacts a highway widening and straightening project on highways 199 and 197 could have on federally protected coho salmon in the Smith River.

The $26 million project was scheduled to break ground this summer, but a federal judge halted construction in May in response to a lawsuit filed by environmental groups that successfully argued that Caltrans and the National Marine Fisheries Service failed to fulfill their responsibilities under the Endangered Species Act.  

“The important thing for Caltrans to know is that the environmental laws are on the books for a reason,” said Don Gillespie, president of Friends of Del Norte, which is one of the plaintiffs along with the Environmental Protection Information Center, the Center for Biological Diversity, and Gasquet resident Ted Souza, who is also an FDN member. “Caltrans and the NMFS should have pursued a scientific study to start this process rather than pay lip service to written environmental law.”

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