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In focus: A place for teenagers

 

County funds teen center

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Yong Lee, 15, plays foosball with a friend Friday afternoon at The Boundary teen center at the fairgrounds. (The Daily Triplicate/ Bryant Anderson)
 

Del Norte County has taken over funding responsibility for a teen center at the fairgrounds that started with private funding last summer.

County officials said they are paying about $1,700 a month because they felt the center was important for the community’s youth.

 


Still worth watching

Authority keeps eye on facility

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Tedd Ward, left and Kevin Hendrick of the Solid Waste Management Authority discuss the capped landfill and its gas vents. The Daily Triplicate/Bryant Anderson
Crescent City’s landfill may have closed four years ago, but that doesn’t mean it has been forgotten.

The people in charge of monitoring and maintaining the landfill admit that it continues to have a detectable effect on groundwater, as it did before it was closed, but say that this is not a cause for public alarm.

The Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority is not only required to continually monitor groundwater surrounding the landfill for the next 30 years, it must also maintain the facility’s infrastructure and its surrounding wetlands.

The Crescent City Landfill was ordered to close by the California Integrated Waste Management Board and the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board because the landfill did not meet current regulations in a number of ways, most importantly it didn’t have a base lining, said Authority  Program Manager Tedd Ward. 


Federal timber money on its way

County gets $2.7M for schools, roads

Del Norte County and its school district will soon receive more than $2.7 million in federal money as part of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act.

This money, which is given to supplement counties for the loss of timber revenue that was once generated from logging in national timber lands, was recently sent to the state and should end up in the county’s coffers soon.

With a worsening national economy and an estimated $42 billion hole in  California’s budget that local governments will likely be asked to shoulder, Del Norte officials say this money has become a vital part of fiscal survival.


Board forms oversight committee

Panel of 10 to monitor use of Measure A funds

After months of discussion, the Del Norte County Unified School District Board selected the Measure A Citizens Oversight Committee Thursday evening.

The group of 10 has no voting power, but these locals are charged with the task of making sure the school board uses the $25 million bond levy funds as members said they would.

Measure A was passed in November. The school district will use the funds to improve and modernize existing Del Norte schools.

A citizen’s oversight committee is required by state law after a bond measure has been passed by voters.


Prison trash dispute

Officials ask why it’s not hauled here

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Ryan and Rose McGuffin unload trash at the transfer station. The Daily Triplicate/Bryant Anderson
Local officials say Del Norte County is losing well over $100,000 in revenue because Pelican Bay State Prison trash is hauled across the state border into Curry County.

The officials want that trash hauled to the Crescent City transfer station and say that is now legally required because of a recent county ordinance inspired by a U.S. Supreme Court decision. But that may mean the prison would have to pay a higher bill than it does to send its garbage to Oregon.

“Essentially the state of California, through Del Norte Disposal, is sending $143,000 to Curry County each year,” said Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority Director Kevin Hendrick. “That’s money that is leaving the local economy.”

The question of where the prison’s garbage should go is not new.

In 1994 the prison declared itself a sovereign entity that did not have to abide by the requirements of the authority’s exclusive franchise for solid waste management in Del Norte County.


Incidents result in shelter’s closure

Fairgrounds ends housing of homeles

A homeless shelter at the Del Norte County Fairgrounds was shut down two weeks early because of numerous disturbances in the area.

“It was time — it was my feeling that there were some unfortunate issues that occurred, like the guy getting beat up,” Randy Hatfield, chief executive officer of the fairgrounds, said Wednesday.

He was referring to a Dec. 30 assault in which James Craig, 26, was severely beaten in the parking lot in front of the shelter.

After the reported assault, Hatfield said he paid his part-time fairground security guards to work extra hours for eight days, using the money that Our Daily Bread Ministries had paid for rent.


Deadline near for switch to digital beacon

Boat devices must change by Feb. 1

Boat owners will soon have no choice when it comes to their on-board emergency beacons.

On Feb. 1 analog emergency position indicating radio beacons (EPIRB) will not only be obsolete, they will be illegal.

When activated, EPIRBs transmit a signal that helps rescue crews find vessels in distress. Currently EPIRBs transmit their signals via satellite on 121.5/243 MHz analog.

On Feb. 1, Cospas-Sarsat, the international satellite-based search and rescue system established by the United States, Canada, Russia and France, will cease processing the analog EPIRBS and will begin processing only 406 MHz digital radio beacon signals.


McClure almost misses the show

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Martha McClure snapped this photo during the inauguration. Courtesy of Martha McClure
Del Norte County supervisor Martha McClure almost didn’t make it to President  Obama’s inauguration Tuesday.

Despite having a ticket for the historic event and waiting in Washington D.C.’s frigid January weather for more than six hours, she found herself pinned against a 10-foot-tall iron security gate with thousands of others, locked out of the inauguration.

“How can this happen when Obama ran such a flawless campaign?” she heard one man yell out as others in the crowd began chanting to be let in.

She grabbed her husband’s arm and tried to find another entrance. By the time they left the logjam they were swept up by another crowd pushing toward a newly opened gate.


School Board may appoint Measure A committee

Levy panel could have 10 members

From almost 30 people, the applicant pool for the Measure A Citizen’s Oversight Committee has been whittled to 10.

After interviewing 14 candidates last week, Del Norte County Unified School District Board members will decide Thursday whether to appoint those 10. 

 IF YOU GO
n WHAT: Del Norte County Office of Education and Unified School District Board Meetings
n WHEN: Thursday at 5:30 p.m.
n WHERE: Education Center Building, Curriculum and Instruction Center at 301 W. Washington Blvd.

While it has no voting power, the committee will oversee the school district as it utilizes the $25 million bond levy passed by voters in November.

Also Thursday, board members will take up a subject first discussed near the end of 2008. In addition to investigating how to clump elementary grades at “in-town” schools, Superintendent Jan Moorehouse will ask the board to look into whether sixth-grade classes could be moved to a middle school.


Police increase emphasis on drunk driving

Grant allows for more stakeouts, checkpoints

The Crescent City Police Department will increase its emphasis on drunk drivers, especially repeat offenders, for the rest of this year.

The California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently awarded a $31,223 grant to the Police Department for the increased emphasis.

“It’s still the No. 1 cause of traffic fatalities across the U.S.,” said police Sgt. Eric Capon.

The department made 55 DUI arrests last year, compared to 78 in 2007. The department reported that the busiest year for DUI arrests was in 2006, with 120 arrests. In 2005, the department had 53 arrests.


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