Sutter Creek, CA Change
       
 
 

Government

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Guest Commentator
3 days ago

In 2006, implementation of California Education Code Section 60850(a) began to prevent the distribution of diplomas to students who failed to pass the California High School Exit Examination. Beginning with the Class of 2006 and continuing through the end of 2015, students who failed to pass the exit exam were given nothing more than a piece of paper saying that they were no longer in high school, but they never received their official high school diplomas.

In October 2015, California Senate Bill 172, eliminating the exit exam,...

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Craig Baracco
3 days ago

At their meeting Tuesday morning, Amador County Supervisors voted to approve a $30,000 grant to study the possible use of surface water in the Shenandoah Valley region and other north county areas.

Due to fractured rock formations and drought-caused lowering of the water table, groundwater wells have grown increasingly unreliable in the region. The supervisors heard testimony from several Shenandoah Valley vintners about the need for new water supplies.

The City of Plymouth will be the lead agency on the study, with the...

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Eric Winslow
3 days ago
AWA Plant Operator George Barnes has got his eye on the controls. Photo by Eric Winslow

Sutter Creek, CA. - Flocculation sounds like a dirty word, but it's actually the first step in keeping your tap water clean enough to drink. Coagulation is another way to say it. Either way, it's the process by which any solid materials that may be in the water going into treatment plant are gathered and removed. This is just the first step in a complex process of water treatment that the vigilant employees and engineers at the Amador Water Agency do all day.

According to Damon Wyckoff, Operations Manager of the Amador Water...

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Craig Baracco
3 days ago
The Jackson Sewage Treatment Plant, above, and the catwalk mounted above the clarification tanks, right. Photos courtesy of Mike Daly

On Monday night, the Jackson City Council voted to move forward with a controversial sewer rate increase.

An average Jackson household, which currently pays just under $30 a month for sewer service, will see a 10-percent increase (about three dollars) next year and each of the next four years, increasing rates by a total of 50 percent or an average of $15 per residential hook-up. Rates changes for commercial customers will be more variable, as different types of businesses will have different rate calculations, with some more...

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Craig Baracco
1 week ago
The Sutter Creek City Council. Ledger Dispatch photo by Craig Baracco

The Sutter Creek City Council worked on several different items at its meeting Monday night, including a mid-year review of the city’s budget.

Sutter Creek City Manager Amy Gedney was upbeat in her assessment of the city’s finances half-way through the fiscal year, with expenses in most categories and overall coming in below the city’s budget projections. Notable was the city’s sewer fund, which had expenses 25 percent less than expected while meeting revenue projections.

The council also discussed a report on the the state of the...

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John Tuttle
1 week ago

Federal and State agency officials gathered recently with conservation and community fire protection groups to kick off the inaugural workshop for a Memorandum of Understanding that will promote the careful and expanded use of fire for natural resource and other social benefits in California.

Wildland fuels are continuing to build up and wildfires are growing larger and more difficult to control, especially in light of California’s extended drought experience and changing climate. These factors have helped bring this unique...

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Craig Baracco
2 weeks ago

Among several items approved at Monday night’s Jackson City Council meeting, the council formulated a response to the Amador County Board of Supervisors’ denial of a tax-sharing agreement for an annexation of Amador County property to the City of Jackson,

The council voted to move forward with a fiscal analysis of the several hundred acres of land that the Jackson Rancheria Casino’s Development Corporation has applied to attach to the city. After this report has been completed, the city and county will meet again in an effort to...

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Brent Parsons
2 weeks ago
Last week’s column was titled “Brent talks to incumber District II Supervisor Richard Forster.” “Mock journalist finally admits to mistakes and then proceeds to write about himself, again” would have been more fitting, but it would not have gotten the readers. I suggested to Jerry that I should write a “correction column” every month or so. It could become popular. He wasn’t thrilled. At the very least, last week’s title should have included Part 1. Here comes Forster part two and maybe three if Editor Budrick decides to split it.... [Read more]
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Craig Baracco
2 weeks ago

At its Tuesday morning meeting, the Amador County Board of Supervisors withdrew an advisory vote on the county joining the proposed State of Jefferson and decreased the amount of medical marijuana that can be grown in the county.

Support for an advisory vote on the proposed State of Jefferson, which would have allowed Amador voters to weigh in on joining an effort to create the new state in rural Northern California and Southern Oregon completely collapsed at Tuesday’s board meeting. A number of factors weighed heavily against the...

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Craig Baracco
3 weeks ago
Ione Police Chief Tracy Busby presents the Officer of the Year Award to John Cruz. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Craig Baracco
At its meeting Tuesday night, the Ione City Council worked on a variety of items. The council was scheduled to consider approval of the 79-unit “Gold Village” housing project, but the developer was unable to attend the meeting, and the item was pulled from the agenda. The council discussed what to do with a city-owned residential lot in the Castle Oaks development, with councilmembers divided on whether to consider selling the property or not. The parcel lies adjacent to a pocket park, so the council directed that the city’s parks... [Read more]
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Brent Parsons
3 weeks ago
Before I get to Supervisor Richard Forster, I’ll correct some errors I made in Gwen Clayton’s story. My writing process is far from perfect. I am not a journalist or really anything by training. I‘m self-taught and -motivated. I did go to college for four years, where I learned that I liked to draw, paint, think, read and write. I enjoyed working with kids as a camp counselor one summer and returned to college another year for a teaching credential, which I used professionally for as long as it took to get it — five years. Most of... [Read more]
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Craig Baracco
3 weeks ago
The Plymouth City Council approved indoor pot growing. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Craig Baracco

The Plymouth City Council has adopted a new set of regulations regarding medical marijuana and will be the first city in Amador or Calaveras counties to allow the indoor cultivation of the plant.

Adopted on a 3-1-1 vote at Thursday night’s council meeting, January 14, the new regulations have been brought about by changes in state law that require cities to weigh in on issues related to medical pot, including cultivation. Peter Taylor, Peter Amoruso and Sandy Kyles supported the measure. Greg Baldwin voted against the ordinance, and...

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Craig Baracco
3 weeks ago
The Sutter Creek City Council banned pot growing. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Craig Baracco

At its meeting Monday night, the Sutter Creek City Council approved changes to its process for design review and gave final approval to ban on cultivating marijuana in the city.

The council approved a package of changes to the city’s design review process as they continue to move forward with a system to review changes to the appearance of buildings in historic areas of the town. The Architectural Review Committee will be renamed the Design Review Committee and the city council will no longer give final approval to projects on Main...

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Craig Baracco
01/14/2016 12:04 PM
Amador County Supervisor John Plasse, left, prepares to change places with outgoing Board Chairman Brian Oneto. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Craig Baracco

At Monday night’s meeting, the Jackson City Council approved an annexation of 367 acres recently acquired by the Jackson Rancheria Band of Miwuk Indians’ Development Corporation to the city. The property, located off French Bar Road, is not currently in development and will be zoned for open space. In the long term, however, the property is designated for residential development and could be built out with a subdivision with additional approvals from the City.

The Council also approved a revenue-sharing agreement with Amador County...

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Craig Baracco
01/14/2016 12:00 PM
The Jackson City Council approved a bump up in garbage collection rates. The fee increase for trash collection approved by the Council will be an across-the-board increase of 8.8%. A typical single-family residence in the city is currently paying $18 a month for garbage collection and will see that increase $1.60 per month to $19.60. The city’s trash collector, ACES Waste Services, cited increased operating costs, including raised dump fees, as the reason for the increase. The increase will be subject to a Proposition 218 protest... [Read more]
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Brent Parsons
01/14/2016 11:00 AM
Gwen Clayton. Photo by Brent Parsons
Last week, we left Gwen in 2004, when she was hired by Amador County as an administrative assistant. In 2007, she moved to the planning department with a promotion to senior administrative assistant. The 2008 crash hit the public sector particularly hard as revenues linked to sales and property taxes, along with impact fees, plummeted. Gwen, a veteran of too many layoffs, avoided the first round by moving to fill a temporary opening in the elections department that became permanent. I asked what that office does in non-election... [Read more]
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Brent Parsons
01/07/2016 11:06 AM
Gwen Clayton is making a bid for incumbent Louis Boitano’s seat as District IV Supervisor. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Brent Parsons

Part One: County Supervisors in Amador tend to supervise for quite a while. Incumbents rarely face challengers, and when they do, tend to keep their seat, presumably on strength of record rather than resistance to change. There have been exceptions, like Lynn Morgan’s extra-inning District 3 win in 2014. That’s the only incumbent replacement I remember in my 27 years here.

There will be one new face on the board with John Plasse’s retirement and now possibly a second. Gwen Clayton has filed to challenge Louis Boitano in District...

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Craig Baracco
01/07/2016 11:06 AM
Citizens of Ione had plenty to say to the Ione City Council on Tuesday. Amador Ledger Dispatch photo by Craig Baracco

On Tuesday night, the Ione City Council discussed a variety of issues at their first regular meeting of the new year, including a possible change in their meeting schedule and the cultivation of medical marijuana.

The council discussed a proposal to change the regular council meeting nights from the first and third Tuesdays of each month to the first and third Thursdays. The change was requested by councilmember Patrick Weart.

Weart, who serves as a sergeant in the Amador County Sheriff’s Department, has recently had a change in...

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Craig Baracco
01/07/2016 11:02 AM
Andrea Sexton has signed on as a Superior Court Child Advocacy Attorney. Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

At its first meeting of the new year, held on Monday night, the Sutter Creek City Council honored departing councilmember Andrea Sexton and discussed the process to replace her.

The council approved a resolution honoring Sexton’s service. She resigned from the council effective December 31. Sexton, elected to the council in November of 2014, is leaving to take a position with the Amador County Superior Court as a child advocate attorney.

Councilmembers then discussed optional methods to use to fill the vacated seat. The council...

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Via Press Release
01/07/2016 10:51 AM

Lockwood Fire Protection District, which provides emergency services throughout a substantial part of Amador County’s Upcountry, is looking for a new chief. The position is part-time and earns a stipend.

As shown in the map to the right, LFPD shoulders responsibility for all of the area highlighted in yellow. The name of the district derives from its inclusion of the intersection of Shake Ridge Road and Fiddletown Road, known in the county as Lockwood Junction.

The chief’s job is to run the department, find efficiencies,...

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