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Miller pleads not guilty

Court proceedings begin after months of delays

Trading in his orange jumpsuit for a plaid, button up shirt and khakis, Josiah Miller walked into Del Norte Superior Court on Tuesday and had his attorney enter a not-guilty plea on his behalf in the Michelle Dickson murder case.

The plea, which occurred before a packed courtroom that included the families of both Miller and Dickson, ended months of delays due to jurisdictional quandaries and started the process for Miller to stand trial.

Miller now awaits his preliminary hearing, scheduled for March 11 and 12, where Del Norte County District Attorney Mike Riese will attempt to prove to a judge that there is sufficient evidence to justify the charges against the 28-year-old. In addition to murder, Miller is charged with arson for allegedly setting fire to Dickson’s vehicle and with a special weapons enhancement for the suspected use of a knife in her slaying.

Rancheria taps member as administrator

Former casino GM gains new position

Read more...Elk Valley Rancheria has hired Brandi L. Natt, a rancheria member, as its tribal administrator.

Since November 2003, Natt has been involved in tribal gaming as a member of the Rancheria Gaming Commission and most recently served as general manager of Elk Valley Casino. 

Prior to that, Natt helped the Yurok Tribe develop programs for staff and parents to address native youth development, culminating in summer camps focused on cultural enrichment, education, and advocacy. 

Push to 'buy local'

Strict laws, remote venue limit district

Angelina Bieber listens to the board during her presentation urging the board to use local companies for Measure A projects. The Daily Triplicate/Bryant Anderson
There’s been a lot of talk about “buying local” in Del Norte County lately.

Ever since the economy took a turn for the worst last year, Del Norters have been hearing it like a mantra urging them to help local business owners and the hometown economy.

The message has been particularly focused on the school district, which gained voter approval of Measure A last November and now has a large chunk of money to spend.

It’s essentially Del Norte’s own version of an economic stimulus package. The $25 million bond levy will add an additional tax on property owners to pay for school facilities improvements and repairs.

Visitors Bureau seeks funding

City balks at request for 25 percent of its yearly tourism tax

The chairman of the Del Norte County Visitors Bureau is frustrated with the Crescent City Council, and he said it’s time for the group to “step up” and give his agency the funding it needs in order to flourish.

At Monday’s joint meeting between the City Council and the county Board of Supervisors, Jim Strong attempted to get both groups to sign off on an agreement to give the Visitors Bureau a quarter of the total transient occupancy tax the entities receive each year from the various hotels and motels in the area.

While county officials have been supportive of the idea, the city continues to lag behind, putting off making a definitive decision.

“What I would like is either a yes or a no,” Strong said after the meeting. “We’re not able to be effective as part-time volunteers.”

TV switch no big deal in Del Norte

Most locations can’t get free signal now

Crescent City and Del Norte County residents don’t need to worry about the upcoming switch to digital television.

The reason, local service providers say, is that unlike other areas, there is no free signal here that can be adequately picked up by rabbit ears or antennas.

“People get a little bit of a signal with rabbit ears and antennas, but it isn’t strong enough to actually be watchable,” said Dennis Sutton owner of Sutton Enterprises, a local satellite television service provider.

A switch to all-digital television will occur nationwide Feb. 17 and according to experts will provide better picture, better sound and more channels for areas that receive a free signal.

County considers traffic signs

A couple of new stop signs and yield signs are in order after the county completed a traffic study of 48 intersections in the Filkins Tract, which runs from El Dorado Street to Inyo, and from Pacific Avenue to Hamilton Street.

The Del Norte County Board of Supervisors still needs to approve the signs at today’s meeting, along with some other recommendations from the study, before they are installed.

Stop signs are recommended for both Inyo Street and Cooper Avenue, and yield signs are suggested for Fresno and Humboldt Streets.

At Inyo, the county wants to put in a stop sign at the Murphy Avenue intersection. The reason for this, according to the traffic study report, is that in the past five years, there have been four accidents at this particular intersection, and the curvature of the roadway restricts a driver’s vision.

News of record

Parolee and wife arrested with guns, drugs

School district sends stimulus wish list to Washington

The Del Norte County Unified School District is trying to get a piece of President Obama’s economic stimulus package.

Superintendent Jan Moorehouse said the district recently put together a $8.5 million list of project requests to be included in the president’s $825 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan.

The district sent the list to U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson and is awaiting further instruction on what to do with the proposal. The city, county and harbor  recently sent a joint $50 million list to the office of Thompson, who represents California’s 1st District that includes Del Norte. That list has since been updated to include another $10 million, and it will be discussed at Monday’s joint meeting of the Crescent City Council and Del Norte County Board of Supervisors.

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