Archive - Dec 2012 - News Article
Opens Forest Service, Mammoth Mountain to potential liability
June Mountain Ski Area just might be more difficult to keep closed than it is to keep open.
Although the ski area will not open this winter, the mountain itself is still there—big, gorgeous, tree-free, covered in a deep blanket of white—and it’s proving irresistible to some snowmobilers and backcountry skiers.
There’s only one problem.
It might get them hurt, or even killed.
Three of the five Mono County supervisors leave at the end of the year, but not without making changes to the region that will likely be felt for generations
Tuesday, Dec. 18 was the last day at the dais for three of Mono County’s five county supervisors—Vikki Magee Bauer, Duane “Hap” Hazard and Tim Hansen—but it was not the end of their influence on the local region.
Far from it.
That was some commotionthis week when none other than Sealhimself got off the plane at the Mammoth-Yosemite Airport, giving us some early-season celebrity cred. …
Loved the terrific holiday bash by the Mammoth Lakes Foundation, which rightly honored Sharon Clarkas Volunteer of the Year and Judy Bornfeldas its Founder of the Year. …
Local nonprofit Mammoth Nordic is selling raffle tickets as a fundraiser and the grand prize is a weeklong trip to Sun Valley, Idaho for its Sun Valley Nordic Festival.
The grand prize includes: accommodations for two for seven nights in a two bedroom suite in a private residence minutes north of Ketchum-Sun Valley, Idaho. The home is located close to the Nordic Trails as well as world famous Sun Valley Ski Resort.
Mammoth’s only locally-owned bookstore, the Booky Joint, now carries an electronic reader designed for independent bookstores, according to owner Dave Leonard.
Called the Kobo, the readers range in price from $80 to $121, with a $49.99 sale on the Kobo Mini scheduled for this weekend, Dec. 21-23.
Rumors that a representative from Senator Dianne Feinstein’s office would visit the Eastern Sierra next month to put pressure on Mammoth Mountain Ski Area to keep June Mountain Ski Area open (by withholding support for a bill for a land trade MMSA wants) could not be confirmed as of Thursday, Dec. 20.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to pay $1M in fees
On Dec. 17, in another setback for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the Kern County Superior Court ruled that LADWP must pay more than $1 million in fees that it deliberately withheld related to air pollution control measures for the dried Owens Lake bed, according to local officials.
Disconnect between audience and policy makers
The Mammoth Town Council Wednesday took on the issue of single-family home rentals, but ended up in a circular debate with audience members who did not seem quite clear about the issue at hand.
The issue before the council was whether or not to order the town staff to gather additional research to help move the debate forward.
Mono County’s paramedics have probably saved hundreds of lives since the program came into existence—but like all good things, there has been a cost.
“This program is costing the county about $500,000 a year more every year,” said Mono County Supervisor Vikki Bauer earlier this year. “We have to put the brakes on this growth in cost.”
To that end, the county has been working with the paramedic union, trying to find a way to keep the program without the constant growth in costs.
Schools superintendent, police chief, review school safety plans
Mammoth schools superintendent Rich Boccia said this week that he and Police Chief Dan Watson are reviewing safety procedures in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., massacre that took the lives of 20 kids and six adults.
Boccia, addressing the Town Council Wednesday evening, said neither he nor Watson will over-react.
Congress passes bill, goes to Obama next
The peak in the Eastern Sierra that is to be named after the late Andrea Mead Lawrence is almost a designated peak.
The only thing it lacks is a sign-off by President Obama.
The Senate passed the Mt. Andrea Lawrence Designation Act of 2011 last year, and the House of Representatives signed off on it Thursday.
Mammoth is back in the pink.
A major national credit ratings service on Wednesday declared Mammoth âstable,â lifting the town from the dregs of a âhighly vulnerableâ credit rating in the wake of settling its legal battle against Mammoth Lakes Land Acquisition (MLLA).
Assistant Town Manager Marianna Marysheva-Martinez delivered the news to the Town Council at its meeting Wednesday evening, just hours after Standard & Poorâs Rating Services raised Mammoth from a âCâ rating to âBB+.â
Using a motion sensor activated camera in Round Valley, members of the Eastern Sierra Land Trust have made a startling discovery.
With a camera purchased with grant funds from the Norcross Wildlife Foundation, ESLT documented 15 different species over a period of five months, ranging from tiny deer mice to the tawny mountain lion.
âWildlife migration corridors are defined as historic routes that many different wildlife species use to travel between different types of crucial habitats,â said the ESLTâs Karen Ferrell-Ingram.
Mammoth Dog Teams owner Jim Ouimet and his several dozen husky dogs have been without a permanent place to call home since 2003âand heâs going to have to wait until at least 2013 for that to change.
âWe will be bringing this up to the supervisors probably around the middle of January, with a staff analysis and the bids we have already done in hand,â said Jim Arkens, Mono Countyâs administrator.
Arkens spoke this week, after the outgoing board of supervisors punted another decision about the dogsled business to the incoming board that will take its seat in January.
Search efforts continue for the single engine plane that may have gone missing over Yosemite National Park on Monday, December 17.
The pilot, recently identified as 68 year-old Nicol Wilson of Solvang, CA, was flying alone from Santa Barbara to Mammoth Lakes when he was last detected via radar in the afternoon of Dec. 17 near the North Dome area of the park. The plane, a 1966 Single-Engine Mooney, was reported missing by Wilson’s family when he didn’t arrive in Mammoth Monday night.