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Crowley woman accused of embezzling from water district will be back in court July 22

July 9, 2013

A Crowley Lake woman, Debra Ray, who was arrested earlier this spring on suspicion of embezzling money from the Crowley Lake Community Water District (she was a board member of the district) was in the Mono County Superior Court on Wednesday, July 3, for a preliminary hearing, according to Mono County District Attorney Tim Kendall.

The taking of evidence and argument was presented over a three day period, Kendall said in an email.

RAW: Stranded climbers rescued from mountains above Convict Lake

July 9, 2013

On the evening of Saturday, July 6, Mono County Sheriff’s dispatch received a call regarding two overdue climbers in the Laurel Mountain area.

A couple, ages 31 and 32, from Oakland, were climbing the Northeast Gully of Laurel Mountain when they failed to return from their climb and were reported overdue by friends.

At approximately 10:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 6, the Mono County Sheriff Search and Rescue (SAR) team was called out to search for the overdue climbers.

Mammoth student fights for his life

July 9, 2013

Evan Podsiad in L.A. hospital, awaiting heart transplant

Evan Podsiad needs a heart.

The 13-year-old Mammoth student, whose passion for jazz music catapulted him into Mammoth High School’s Advanced Jazz Band at the age of 12, currently is in Los Angeles awaiting a heart transplant.

Meanwhile, in Mammoth, Jazz Jubilee producers Ken and Flossie Coulter are putting the finishing touches on a fundraiser July 13 at Sam’s Woodsite, called “The Beat Goes On for Evan Benefit Fundraiser.”

First county budget meeting for public Monday, July 8, more to follow

July 8, 2013

The Mono County Board of Supervisors is holding a series of meetings that will allow the public to get a look at the county’s preliminary budget, give input, and ask questions, with the first meeting Monday, July 8, in Crowley Lake.

The meetings will be held in most of the county’s communities this summer, according to county officials.

Prior to the town hall meetings, county budget information will be posted at www.monocounty.ca.gov.

RAW: Plane missing since December located near Vogelsang Peak in Yosemite

July 8, 2013

The single engine plane that was reported missing over Yosemite National Park on Monday, December 17, 2012, has been located.

The plane, which was largely intact, was spotted by a park visitor near Vogelsang High Sierra Camp on Saturday, July 6, 2013. The Vogelsang area is in the rugged high country of Yosemite National Park.

Yosemite National Park Rangers hiked to the location of the plane on Sunday, July 7, 2013. Nicol Wilson, the pilot of the plane, was found deceased at the location. He has been positively identified.

Jarvis leaves Public Works; 'It's just too much,' he says of Mammoth workload

July 8, 2013

 

Ray Jarvis, the affable Public Works director who for two years has held Mammoth together with baling wire and chewing gum, announced his resignation on Friday.

Jarvis will assume new duties as the public works director in South Lake Tahoe after Aug 2.

The 55-year-old Jarvis, who because of budget cuts also was manager of Mammoth-Yosemite Airport, is the second key employee to announce his resignation this past week. Earlier, building inspector Johnny Goetz announced he would leave for a similar position in Truckee.

Local frogs, toad leap toward endangered list

July 8, 2013

Amphibians may impact private property owners, recreation

Three of Mono County’s amphibians could be headed for the federal Endangered Species list and while that might not sound exciting, protecting the Yosemite toad, the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog and the Mountain yellow-legged frog could create several changes to Eastern Sierra communities.

MLPD Volunteer Program in place

July 8, 2013

‘Training Academy’ begins this month

The Mammoth Police Department’s Volunteer Program, designed to supplement the beleaguered force, is off the ground.

Police Chief Dan Watson said the department is taking applications effective immediately.

The volunteers, he said, are needed to perform administrative duties such as greeting and assisting visitors at the front counter, providing translation services, and data entry. 

Goetz announces resignation from town

July 8, 2013

‘A huge loss,’ Jarvis says

Johnny Goetz, Mammoth’s main building inspector and go-to man for everything from lighting ordinances and code compliances to fire prevention measures, announced his resignation this past week.

Goetz, 42, is to move to Truckee on Aug. 2 to take over as Chief Building Official. He takes with him his wife, lifelong Mammoth resident Heidi (Hartman), and their two children, Calvin, 5, and Casey, 2.

Council de-funds fireworks for next year

July 5, 2013

Town commits to help fund a new experience in Mammoth in 2014

The Fourth of July fireworks show at Crowley Lake, one of Mammoth’s iconic summer mainstay events, will officially take its place on the Endangered Species List after this weekend.

The Mammoth Lakes Town Council made sure of that on June 19, when it voted to denude the fireworks show at Crowley Lake of its funding, beginning next summer.

Digital 395 chief says project mostly on track for July 31 deadline

July 5, 2013

Rumors that project is broke are false, layoffs occurring as project winds down

Rumors that the Digital 395 project is broke and might not get completed are false, according to the project’s chief executive, Michael Ort.

“We are winding down,” he said. “That means we are not putting in 20 to 50 miles of conduit per month like we were and it also means we are beginning to lay some people off, so that might be where the rumors are coming from, but we will finish this project.”

Last gasp for June Lake residents opposed to land trade process

July 5, 2013

Supervisors revise letter of support for land trade, approve it unanimously

The members of June Lake’s Committee for a Viable June Lake were relatively sure this week that their last try to get the county supervisors to hold off on supporting a land trade bill for Mammoth Mountain Ski Area wouldn’t work—and they were right.

Council postpones TBID vote

July 4, 2013

‘TBID’ sidelined until July 17

Mammoth’s new, tourism-based Business Improvement District went into a holding pattern this week when the Town Council pushed back a vote on the measure until at least July 17.

 The increasingly controversial TBID assessment on businesses, which promises $4.7 million a year in revenue for tourism-based marketing and air service subsidies, is still very much alive.

Court moves forward on delinquent fee collections

July 2, 2013

Scofflaws, take heed. Mono County Superior Court is coming after you. The county board of supervisors voted Tuesday, June 18, to move forward on a preliminary agreement with the court to collect outstanding fines from anyone who has committed an infraction or failed to appear in court as far back as 20 years.

The “enhanced” revenue collection agreement to fund another part time position at the court will bring millions of dollars to the court, which is facing some steep state funding cuts.

Another rescue, this time in Clarks Canyon climbing area

July 1, 2013

On the afternoon of Sunday, June 30, at approximately 1:30 p.m., Mono County Sheriff’s Dispatch received a call regarding an injured climber in the Clark Canyon area.

A 59-year-old climber from San Francisco was reported injured while climbing in the Clark Canyon area.

The Mono County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue (SAR) team and Mono County Paramedics were called out to aid in the rescue of the injured climber. The female climber was climbing the “Al’s Garage” climbing route when she dislocated her hip.

‘Accidental’ shooting wounds two

July 1, 2013

Father, son injured at Bridgeport range

A 57-year-old man and his 30-year-old son needed medical attention after a “possible accidental shooting” at the Bridgeport gun range.

The incident, according to the Mono County Sheriff’s Department, happened about 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 25.

Details of how both men, neither of whom was named by the department, came away wounded remained muddled, as of press time.

Tourist numbers continue surge

July 1, 2013

Double-digit increase from 2012

Tourist visits to Mammoth continue to outpace last year’s numbers, according to the newest monthly tracking report from Mammoth Lakes Tourism.

Room occupancy in May averaged 22.9 percent, up 34.1 percent from the 17.1 percent registered in 2012. 

The actual revenue per available room also was up, by 36.7 percent. The revenue figure was $30 per room, up from $22 a year ago.

RAW: Injured woman, 75, lifted by chopper out of backcountry

June 28, 2013

The Mono County Search and Rescue team on Tuesday, June 25, lifted a 75-year-old Swall Meadows woman off the Pacific Crest Trail after she suffered an ankle injury and was unable to walk out.

According to the Mono County Sheriff's Department, the woman was backpacking with her husband on a flat section of dirt trail when she rolled her left ankle.

A Sheriff's Department spokesperson said the woman "heard a pop and collapsed, experiencing severe pain.

"She was unable to put any weight on the limb and therefore was unable to walk out of the backcountry," the spokesperson said.

June Lake death called a suicide

June 28, 2013

A 28-year-old Murrieta man on Thursday committed suicide at Gull Lake Marina in June Lake, according to the Mono County Sheriff's Department.

Officers said Daniel Barnes was unresponsive when they reached him at about 9:30 a.m.

Mono County Sheriff Deputies and investigators, Mono County paramedics, and members of the June Lake Fire Department were dispatched to the scene, where they determined that Barnes "was deceased from an apparent single, self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head."

Weekend ‘Dial-A-Ride’ faces cutback

June 28, 2013

Other bus tweaks on the way

Mammoth’s weekend “Dial-A-Ride” program, designed to help provide paratransit service for those unable to use fixed-route transit, faced the knife this past week.

John Helm, the chief of the Eastern Sierra Transit Authority, said there is little or no demand for the service on weekend days, and that it would be difficult to justify the expense for another year.

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