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Matthew Hedger
4 hours ago
A helicopter flies in a utility pole as workers attempt to restore power to areas burned during the Sand Fire. Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch by Michael Hanson.
As of 7:45 a.m. Wednesday, July 30, CALFIRE says the Sand Fire has consumed 4,240 acres and is 90 percent contained, with full containment expected Aug. 2. Nineteen residences and 47 outbuildings have been burned. All evacuation orders have been lifted, including Painted Pony Rd. The Red Cross evacuation shelter located at the Ponderosa High School has been closed.

Residents returning to the area may be required to show identification and proof of residency. CAL FIRE encourages residents returning to the area to drive safely and...

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Matthew Hedger
Yesterday
The Amador County Sheriff's Office has released frame grabs from video taken yesterday, Monday, July 28, of a man suspected of robbing the American River Bank of an undisclosed amount of money. The earlier breaking news story is posted below:

Straight off the wire from the ACSO:

On July 28, 2014 at approximately 1308 hours, the Amador County Sheriff’s Office received a silent hold up alarm at the American River Bank, 26395 Buckhorn Ridge Rd. Pioneer

Upon arrival of Amador County Sheriff’s Deputies, it was determined that a...

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Via Press Release
4 hours ago
There’s no better way to enhance the taste bud feedback of military rations than with hot sauce

There is an observation frequently attributed to Napoleon that “An army marches on its stomach.”

While certainly true at some level, that’s only part of the story. In the case of modern 21st century armies, at least some of that marching takes place on its taste buds. And there’s no better way to enhance the taste bud feedback of military rations than with hot sauce. In fact, it has become a critical accompaniment to a broad range of...

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Via Press Release
Yesterday
The Amador County Peace Officer's Association is seeking nominations for Peace Officer and Citizen of the Year for 2014.

Any nominations should include a brief statement to support the nomination. Please submit nominations to the ACPOA, c/o Awards Committee, P.O. Box 1632, Sutter Creek, CA. 95685-1632 on or before Sept. 8, 2014.

The Awards Committee will be selecting this year's winner at their Sept. 11 meeting.

The Awards Dinner will be held at the American Legion Hall in Martell on Saturday, Oct. 25. No host cocktails are...

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Via Press Release
Yesterday
AWA Approves Mandatory Outdoor Water Conservation Measures

Amador Water Agency Directors declared a “Stage 2 Water Shortage Emergency” Thursday, July 24, 2014, which triggered water conservation measures required by the State Water Resources Control Board.

In discussion at the regular Board meeting, AWA Directors emphasized that the Water Agency’s focus will be on customer education and outreach, rather than enforcement.

Agency policy does not include fines for customers who waste water. $500 fines were widely included in media...

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Matthew Hedger
Yesterday
Photo taken earlier this weekend.
As of 9:10 a.m. on July 29, 2014, CAL FIRE is reporting the Sand Fire is 80 percent contained and is expected to be fully contained by Friday, Aug. 1. 3,800 acres have burned, along with 13 residences and 38 outbuildings.

As of 9 a.m. today, the Evacuation Orders for Freshwater Rd., Lone Barn Rd., including Moco Canyon Rd., Bell Ranch Rd. and Twin Rivers Rd. have been lifted. Painted Pony and Dwyer Rd., still remain under the current Evacuation Order.

Residents returning to the area may be required to show identification and proof...

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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
As of 6;30 p.m., CALFIRE says the Sand fire is 75 percent contained. As of 5 p.m. the evacuation orders for Sand Ridge Rd and all roads connecting to Sand Ridge Rd have been reduced to an evacuation warning with the exception of Freshwater Rd, south of Vintage Trail. This portion of Freshwater Rd will remain under an Evacuation Order.

Traffic Control Points remain at the following locations:

Freshwater Rd at Vintage Trail

Sand Ridge Rd at Deerhaven

E16 at Lone Barn

E16 at Brinkwood

Flat Creek at Bertone

The following areas...

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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
As of 5:00 p.m. today, the evacuation orders for Sand Ridge Rd and all roads connecting to Sand Ridge Rd have been reduced to an evacuation warning with the exception of Freshwater Rd, south of Vintage Trail. This portion of Freshwater Rd will remain under an Evacuation Order.

Traffic Control Points remain at the following locations:

* Freshwater Rd at Vintage Trail

* Sand Ridge Rd at Deerhaven

* E16 at Lone Barn

* E16 at Brinkwood

* Flat Creek at Bertone The following areas remain under an Evacuation Order:

* Flat...

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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
As seen from the skies over Folsom Lake yesterday.
CALFIRE’S latest information on the Sand fire released at 8 a.m. this morning, Monday, July 28, says the blaze is now 65 percent contained, and has not burned any additional acreage, with 3,800 acres still listed as burned. Fire crews increased the containment overnight and plan to continue to improve and hold those lines today. There are currently 1,937 fire personnel on scene in 51 crews using 196 engines, 4 helicopters, 30 dozers and 52 water tenders. Most other air resources have been re tasked to the El Portal fire burning in... [Read more]
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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
The scene outside the American River Bank in Pioneer this afternoon, Monday, July 28, 2014.
UPDATE 2:21 P.M. Here is the first picture from Bill Lavallie on the scene, who reports the bank was the American River Bank across from the grocery store in Pioneer, and not the Bank of Amador, as first reported. Sheriff's deputies and other law enforcement are still going door to door in the area and performing traffic stops on vehicles. Stay tuned, pictures on the way.

Authorities are looking for a man who robbed the Bank of Amador in Buckhorn at around 1 p.m. today, Monday, July 28, 2014. The man is described as white, 5’9...

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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
Straight off the wire from the ACSO:

On July 28, 2014 at approximately 1308 hours, the Amador County Sheriff’s Office received a silent hold up alarm at the American River Bank, 26395 Buckhorn Ridge Rd. Pioneer

Upon arrival of Amador County Sheriff’s Deputies, it was determined that a white male adult, approximately 30 years old, clean shaven, wearing a tan beanie, sunglasses, tan long sleeve shirt with the letters HAT over the left chest pocket, tan pants and deck shoes entered the bank armed with what appeared to be a black...

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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
Today is Monday, July 28, the 209th day of 2014 with 156 to follow.

The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Jupiter, Mercury, Neptune, Uranus and Venus. Evening stars are Mars and Saturn.

In 1868, the ratified 14th Amendment was adopted into the U.S. Constitution, guaranteeing citizenship and all its privileges to African-Americans.

In 1945, the U.S. Senate ratified the United Nations.

In 1976, a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck the Tangshan, China, area, killing more than 240,000 people. It was among the deadliest quakes...

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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
A new fire has been reported near Valley Springs and the New Hogan Reservoir about an hour ago. At least one strike team has been dispatched, and reports continue to trickle in. [Read more]
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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
As of 1:05 p.m., not much has changed with CALFIRE’s numbers on the Sand fire — it remains at 3,800 Acres with 65 percent containment. Mapping crews have been able to update the structure loss, which as of now stands at 13 residences destroyed, along with 38 outbuildings. Some of the evacuation orders have been lifted: Evacuation Ordera reduced to Evacuation Warnings in Amador County: include Highway 49/Bell Road, Courier Rd. Shenandoah Rd.

and Upton Rd. In El Dorado County: All of Upton Rd., Jaybird, D’Agnostini, Bertone, Squirrel...

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Matthew Hedger
2 days ago
Residents displaced by the Sand Fire in Amador County may be eligible for reimbursement for additional living expenses caused by mandatory evacuations.

“As fire threatens Amador County, evacuees may incur significant expenses,” said Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. “Homeowners should know their insurance policy may cover additional living expenses associated with the mandatory evacuation and should contact their insurer for assistance.”

Many homeowner insurance policies cover additional living expenses during natural disasters....

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Matthew Hedger
3 days ago
A view of the Sand fire as seen from the Helwig Winery at around 3 p.m. Saturday, June 26, 2014 Photo courtesy James Thorall.
As of 8:15 p.m. July 26, the last update provided by CALFIRE, the Sand fire had consumed 4,000 acres and was 20 percent contained. There were 515 structures being threatened. Ten residences and seven outbuildings have been destroyed. Evacuations were in place for Sand Ridge Road, Fresh Water, Burlwood, Morales Ranch Road, Vintage Trail, Upton Road, Twin Rivers Road, Vintage Road to Sandridge Road, Buzzards Gulch Road and all of Buzzards Gulch Road. River Pine Estates. and Vintage Road to Morning Canyon Road Sand Ridge Road is... [Read more]
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Via Press Release
6 days ago
On Tuesday, August 12, from 9 a.m. to noon, there will be a Veterans’ Benefits Orientation, co-sponsored by Caltrans District 10 and Victory Village Amador. This informational workshop will be held at Victory Village, on Kennedy Flat Road, in Jackson, to educate veterans on available government benefits and resource programs.

Benefits and resources that will be discussed include: starting a business and becoming government-certified; veterans’ educational benefits; employment assistance and opportunities; compensation, pension...

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Jerry Budrick
6 days ago
Homeless veterans live in homemade shelters all over the State of California. Photo courtesy to the Ledger Dispatch
On any given night, roughly 16,000 veterans in California have no place to call home. They sleep in parks, under bridges, in their cars, in emergency shelters or on a friend’s couch. However, thanks to the voters’ approval of Proposition 41 and the partnership of three state agencies, more veterans will have access to permanent, safe and affordable housing. The California Department of Veterans Affairs, the California Department of Housing and Community Development and the California Housing Finance Agency are working together to... [Read more]
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Via Press Release
3 days ago
Soroptimist International of Amador County is committed to improving the lives of women and children.

Our local chapter supports the Live Your Dream Scholarship. We offer a cash reward of $3,000 to a woman who provides the primary financial support for herself and/or her family. The woman must be enrolled in a vocational/skills training program or an undergraduate degree program. The money can be used to offset any costs associated with her efforts to attain a higher education.

To apply for this scholarship, please call Laura,...

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Matthew Hedger
3 days ago
Update at 4:30 p.m.: from Pioneer Fire Chief Jack Daniels: "The Sand Incident is 3,800 Acres and 35% contained. The fire isn't doing much currently. Expect the containment to go up if the current conditions hold. The evacuations in place will stay in effect until further notice." [Read more]
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