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Dam removal announcement: 'Implications all over the world'

California Gov. Jerry Brown speaks Wednesday morning at Requa about removing dams from the Klamath River. Del Norte Triplicate / Bryant Anderson
 Federal, state and tribal leaders hail deal to undam the Klamath 

REQUA  — Historic agreements that should initiate four long-awaited dam removals and set in motion a massive salmon restoration project were signed on the mouth of the Klamath River on Wednesday morning by state, federal and tribal leaders.

Gov. Jerry Brown, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell joined a host of others on a stage fashioned from boat docks on the Yurok Reservation to express their commitment to un-damming the Klamath, in spite of Congress’ failure to pass the necessary backing legislation by 2015. 

Finding a compromise that works for the people throughout the Klamath Basin, and one that will work even without congressional approval, “by working together is the way American politics should work. This is the absolute essence of non-extremism and non-polarization,” Gov. Jerry Brown said, adding the historic move would have “implications all over the world.”

Naffah preferred by Waste Board

Eli Naffah, instructor at College of the Redwoods and former Crescent City manager, was elected public commissioner for the Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority, 4-0, at a special meeting Tuesday. 

A prior motion to re-appoint Patricia Black tied 2-2, and therefore failed to carry. The long time member of the Solid Waste Task Force had been chosen to fill the vacancy in November by the Authority Board of Commissioners, but the Del Norte County Supervisors didn’t have the votes to back her. 

“Out of respect” for the applicants who’d already been vetted once before, Commissioner Blake Inscore said he didn’t want to send someone back to the Board of Supervisors when he wasn’t certain that the outcome would be any different: “I don’t want to have to do this again.” 

Petition for ballot referendum submitted

Crescent City voters could get an opportunity to vote whether or not to adopt the Residential Consumption Based Sewer Rate Model the City Council voted unanimously to adopt last month. 

Donna Westfall and her Del Norte Crescent City Taxpayers Association presented the city with 219 signatures on a petition Monday, demanding the ordinance establishing the new sewer rate – Ordinance 792 — be placed on the November ballot as a referendum. 

Crescent City Administrative Analyst Kymmie Scott said she will start signature verification on Monday. 

Tolowa vigil to honor massacred ancestors

Before Ship Ashore and Salmon Harbor resorts existed, the Tolowa village of Xaa-wan’-k’wvt (Howonquet) lay at the mouth of the Smith River.

The valley was a forest back then and the village was large enough to have suburbs, said Cynthia Ford, a language teacher for the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation. But a series of massacres, starting at the village of Taa-’at-dvn near Crescent City in 1853 and including the villages of Xaa-wan’-k’wvt, Yan-daa-k’vt (Yontocket) and ‘Ee-chuu-le near Lake Earl would leave a lasting impact not only on the Tolowa people, but on the land they inhabited.

Members of the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation and Elk Valley Rancheria will light candles Friday for their ancestors who were killed and who survived the massacres. The vigil will be held at the Ship Ashore boat ramp near the site of the old Xaa-wan’-k’wvt village and will include keynote speaker Reno Franklin, chair of the Kashia Band of Pomo Indians.

Probation trainee faces sex abuse charges

 A Crescent City man training to work in the Del Norte County Probation Department is charged with multiple counts of sexually abusing a child over more than two years and will likely see trial by summer. 

Primo Bonilla III, 54, was charged in February with five counts, accusing him of molesting a pre-teen between October 2013 and January 2016. 

On Wednesday, Del Norte Superior Court Judge William Follett approved a motion by Anna Marie Padilla of the District Attorney’s office to add two new charges, one of them describing non-specific sexual abuse over a period of time. 

College breaks ground on long-awaited science lab

Former College of the Redwoods instructor and trustee Rick Bennett (right) turns the soil at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new science lab with Trustee Carol Mathews and contractors. Del Norte Triplicate / Laura Jo Welter
 A groundbreaking celebration for the new science lab stole the show Tuesday during Del Norte’s annual visit from College of the Redwoods trustees.

“This, this is something else. This is something that I’ve dreamed about,” said former instructor and trustee Rick Bennett, who was introduced as the “father of the Del Norte campus” and a “huge supporter” of the project. He took a moment to reflect on the evolution of the college’s local presence, then said of the coming science lab: “I’m thrilled it’s come to pass.” 

Already a decade in the making, the $1.5 million project should be completed by spring of 2017, using mostly 2002 bond measure funds.

Harbor District nears inking deal on solar power system

Harbor District Commissioners are two weeks away from signing an agreement for an extensive solar power system with the potential to produce 539 Kilowatts and save the harbor a projected $24,400 annually on their electric bill.

Commissioners decided Tuesday to take a little more time to review the particulars of the 20-year agreement.

The system involves installation of 1,739 panels on the roofs of at least 12 of Harbor District buildings. The system has the potential to provide all of the Harbors’ electrical needs said Business Development Director David Feller with Trinergy LLC, the solar company the Harbor is favoring for the job 

Jessica Mercado with Del Norte Economic Development Corporation was instrumental in the Harbor’s decision to step up and revolutionize the Harbor’s operation with solar energy. She said EDC helped facilitate the initial relationships and presented the opportunity for the harbor to install a state of the art solar system with no out of pocket cash.

Emergency dispatch call logs, April 4-6, 2016

Excerpts from the Del Norte County emergency dispatch call logs, April 4-6:  

Monday, April 4

Note: From 4:08 p.m.

At 5:06 p.m., report of a large fight in the park on the 3400 block of Kings Valley Road.

At 5:34 p.m., caller on the 1000 block of Vipond Drive says his brother pulled a knife on him. 

At 7:44 p.m., caller on the 13600 block of Ocean View Drive in Smith River would like to report his gas being siphoned. 

Property tax payment due Mon.

Property owners have until Monday to pay the second installment of the 2015-16 property taxes. A 10 percent penalty plus a $10 cost on each parcel will be tacked on after that date.

Property owners can visit the tax collector’s office at the Flynn Center in Crescent City to pay their bill. Payments can also be sent to the tax collector’s office at 981 H Street, Suite 150, Crescent City, CA 95531.

For more information regarding your tax bill, call 464-7283.

Letter to the Editor, April 7, 2016

Roger Gitlin is the top choice for supervisor

The other day as I was checking my mail there was a gentleman checking his mail as well. So I stopped and asked him if he could help me open my mail because I have Parkinsons and it’s difficult to open envelopes.

He was very nice and helped me and as he was helping me he asked if I was registered to vote and I replied, yes.

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