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News summaries for May 22, 1997
Post Office site still in dark
Speed limit change slow in coming
90 day limit for General Assistance
Expect some road delays
Fire season begins early

No news on Post Office site

The U.S. Postal Service looked at possible sites for loca tion of the Alturas Post Office this week, but Mayor John Hagerman said they were tight-lipped about the actual spot.

"We can understand their reticence in disclosing the ac tual location until all the negotiating is complete," Hagerman said Tuesday. "We do know they looked at sites on Main Street and will be getting back to us with their deci sions in the near future. But, they really wouldn't pinpoint the locations."

Sources say the main sites the Post Office checked over include lots on Main Street east of Carstens Chevrolet, east of Jerry's Restaurant and the old Forest Service Building. None of those sites were confirmed by Postal officials this week.

According to Hagerman, the sites are all on Main Street and the former site on West C Street near the California Highway Patrol office has apparently been dropped. The current Post Office location near Bank of America is not be ing considered for continued use, said Hagerman. The Post Office has stated the facility and the lot are too cramped for the needs.

According to Hagerman, the actual location will be an nounced in the next few days.

Speed limit change may take time

Changing the speed limit on U.S. 395 through Davis Creek may take an act of Congress. At least that's what the Modoc County Board of Supervisors heard from CalTrans officials Tuesday.

The board intends to contact state legisla tors and ask for help in dealing with the law involving the speed limits through small towns.

CalTrans, later Tuesday evening, told the Modoc Local Transportation Commission, that it would put up signs in both directions warning of "Congestion Ahead" and "Intersection".

The county is concerned about the speed limit through the small town, and the interest was heightened following a school bus-car accident on the highway in front of the Davis Creek Store last month. There were no in juries to the students on the bus, but a family in the car sustained injuries. Speed was not a factor in the accident, said the CHP, but a school bus stop or turn around area might be better signed.

CalTrans explained that in the past five years only two accidents have occurred in the area, and neither was speed related. The school bus accident was driver error and the other single vehicle accident was because of icy roads.

The county will continue its efforts in de creasing the speed limit in that town.

County limits general assistance to 90 days

Able-bodied adults on General Assistance in Modoc County will only be able to draw that help for three months in any 12 month period.

The Modoc County Board of Supervisors Tuesday passed a resolution limiting the eligibility to three months and the ef fective date is June 1. Previously there was no time limit on General Assistance.

County Social Services Director Richard, ex plained that counties in the state are adopting time limita tions on General Assistance and Modoc had to follow suit or become a "county of choice" for those people dropped from other counties.

The maximum amount of GA is $295.50 per month in Modoc and comes from the county's general fund.

The new eligibility limits do not impact those folks on interim assistance, who are generally waiting for rulings on SSI or other benefits.

According to Belarde, Shasta and Butte Counties just dropped 500 people off their General Assistance rolls, prompting neighboring counties to do something to avoid a major impact from those people migrating in.

At the present time, Belarde said the county has 25 people on the GA rolls. Belarde is also looking for volunteer super visors who would help with a work program for those people. Those volunteers would supervise crews of General Assistance recipients as they perform some pubic service work. To volunteer, call either Belarde at 233-6501 or the City of Alturas at 233-2512.

Roadway delays in Modoc

There are areas where travelers may be delayed because of roadwork on Modoc Highways.

CalTrans reports that Highway 139 at various locations from seven miles north to 32 miles north of Canby; main tenance project for shoulder repair; one-way traffic con trolled by flaggers and pilot car; delays of up to 15 minutes should be expected. Completion is set for the end of May.

Highway 395 at various locations from 18 miles north of Alturas to seven miles south of the Oregon State line; maintenance project for pavement repair; one-way traffic controlled by flaggers and pilot car; delays of up to 15 minutes may be expected.

Fire season begins early

Fire season began early and with a burst, consuming nearly 200 acres on private and federal lands. Located approximately 30 miles east of Lakeview, Ore., the fire was reported to the Lakeview In teragency Fire Center Mon day afternoon.

So far, six engines, five dozers, two hand crews, two water tenders, and one heli copter have been dispatched to the scene near Drews Valley Ranch (north of Highway 140 west). The fire is burning in slash and is under investiga tion.

No fire restrictions are in place at this time, but every one is reminded to use ex treme caution when burning outside or smoking outside a vehicle or building.

Two Snake River Valley (SRV) crews arrived, just be fore dawn, to assist in fight ing the nearly 150 acre fire. Dozers have put a line around the perimeter of the fire, but afternoon winds caused flames and embers to jump outside the line in spots.

Two more hand crews have been ordered to accom pany the 20 person SRV crews, four dozers, two heli copters, two strike teams of engines (10 total), three wa ter tenders, four additional engines, and approximately 22 overhead personnel in various positions.

At this time, fire officials are taking a look at the fire from the air to better assess Drews' Fire size and situa tion. It is expected to be un der control by Friday evening. The cause of the fire is still under investiga tion.

Headline Summaries For May 29,1997

The forecast: Variable cloudiness is in the forecast Friday with a slight chance of thunderstorms. The clouds remain through the weekend with more sun on Sunday. Highs should be in the 70s and lows in the upper 30s to 50s.

Modoc's High School Seniors graduate
Former Publisher Bob Sloss passes on
City cops nap Reno suspects
Geothermal plant needs comment
Local woman in Hall of Fame

Modoc graduates seniors in Class 1997

Over the next couple of weeks, 108 people around Modoc County will be slap ping mortar boards on their heads, grabbing sheepskins and turning tassels.

It's graduation time again. 102 people will receive high school diplomas from five dif ferent programs. Six other individuals will receive As sociate of Arts degrees through Lassen College. The graduation exercises, distin guished scholars, and lists of graduates are outlined below.

Surprise Valley High School - May 30

SVHS will award 14 diplomas at tonight's cere monies. Kathryn A. Farschon is the Class of 1997 Valedictorian, Sadie L. Smith is the Salutatorian and Ryan J. DePaul is the Historian.

Warner High School and Alternative Education - June 3

Four Warner grads and five Alternative Education candidates will receive their diplomas in Oxley Hall.

Modoc High School - June 5

Griswold Gymnasium at 8 p.m. will be the time and place for 64 graduates to go through their final exercises. Distinguished scholars are Valedictorian Adam Bailey and Salutatorian Kevin Kramer.

Big Valley High School - June 6

Fifteen graduates will be honored at ceremonies begin ning at 8 p.m. in the school gym. The call Valedictorian is Mindy Michelle Haury. Co-Salutatorians are Valerie Kay Darnell and Jessica Lynn Saltzman.

Lassen College - Tonight

Ceremonies will be held in Oxley Hall at Modoc High School beginning at 6 p.m. Six graduates are scheduled to receive Associate of Arts de grees.

Former Modoc Record Publisher Bob Sloss dies

Former Modoc Record Publisher Robert L. Sloss died at his Alturas home May 23, 1997 following a battle with can cer. He was 68 years old.

Mr. Sloss was a life-long resident of Modoc County and spent over 30 years at the Modoc County Record as owner, editor and publisher. He sold the paper in the summer of 1993 and retired, remaining in Alturas with his wife of 42 years, Suzanne.

He was the originator of Modoc's universally ac cepted trademark, "Modoc Mike" and was an accom plished artist, cartoonist, writer, pho tographer, wood carver, jour nalist and histo rian. He was also an expert fly-fisherman. He will be remembered fondly by Modoc'ers for his decades of Modoc Record columns enti tled: "Mike's Memo," which were often hu morous, often serious and al ways allowed Modoc a chance to laugh at itself or see itself in another perspective.

In addition to his wife Suzanne, he is survived by daugh ters Laura Jordan, husband Mike, and grandsons, Jesse and Tyler, of New Plymouth, Idaho; Kerry Sloss of Antioch; Meg Sloss and grandchildren Paul and Annette Malatesta of Alturas; son, John, wife Annie, and grandchildren Anthony and Camille of Martinez; and sister Peggy Dekker of Alturas.

He was preceded in death by a sister, Betty Hironymous, and his parents.

The family requests donations be made to the Robert L. Sloss Memorial Scholarship Fund at Bank of America, in Alturas.

Memorial services for Mr. Sloss were held Tuesday at the Federated Church in Alturas and a private inurnment was held Wednesday at the Alturas Cemetery.

Alturas Police nab suspects in Reno store armed robbery

Alturas City Police arrested three juveniles May 27, sus pected of armed robbery to a Scolari's market in Reno May 22.

According to Chief of Police Larry Pickett, Officer Ryan Burns noticed the juveniles about 10:30 p.m. Monday at Gil's Gas on Main Street. According to Burns, the juveniles were acting in a suspicious manner and he chose to run the li cense plates on the Cadillac they were driving. The plates came back belonging to a GMC truck.

Upon further investigation, Burns and Officer Vern Seevers discovered several items in the vehicle, including cartons of cigarettes, a concealed weapon, a dagger, mari juana and currency. The trio, two boys and one girl, was ar rested for possession of stolen property.

Pickett contacted the Reno Police Department who imme diately made the trip to Alturas to check out the suspects.

According to Reno Police, the three juveniles match the description of the suspects in the armed robbery. That rob bery occurred just after the Scolari's Market closed. The trio, wearing Halloween masks, approached employees who had just closed the store and forced them back into the market at gun and knife point. They tied the employees up and made off with goods and cash.

The two boys were taken to the Shasta Juvenile Detention center and the girl was in custody in Modoc.

Comments sought on Telephone Flat wells

The Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service will be holding public meetings the second week in June on a proposed geothermal plant in the Medicine Lake area.

The California Energy General Corporation (CalEnergy) has proposed to develop a 48 megawatt (MW) geothermal power plant in the Telephone Flat area about 1.5 miles east of Medicine Lake. The project is in Siskiyou County, but on Modoc National Forest Lands. The proposal includes con struction of the power plant as well as related pipelines and a 230-kilovolt transmission line that extends about 21 miles to the north and east to a connection with the existing 230kV Bonneville Power Administration transmission line be tween Perez and Flurey Wells.

Scoping meetings are scheduled in Tulelake, June 11, 7 p.m. at the Tulelake Fairgrounds Home Economics Building and in Dorris June 10, 7 p.m. at Dorris City Hall.

Written comments may also be made to Randall Sharp, USFS/BLM, Telephone Flat Geothermal Project EIS/EIR Coordinator, 800 W. 12th Street, Alturas, Ca. 96101.

Cowboy Hall of Fame comes to Modoc County

Tucked away in the high mountains of Modoc County in North Eastern California a lady of rodeo resides in a rest home. Reba Perry Blakely shares a room with her trunks of writings, tapes, newspaper clippings, pictures, memora bilia and memories.

By 1930 Reba Perry had be come a World Champion Re lay Rider. Small and petite she could fly like the wind on race horses and she was in great demand by owners of some of the best horses on the circuit. She was well known for her flat racing, relay races and pony express exper tise throughout Washington, Oregon and western Canada.

At the Ellensburg, Wash. rodeo in 1928 Reba encoun tered some of the world Cham pion Cowgirls, such as Vera McGinnis, Vedal Tindel, Rene Shelton, Mabel Strick land, Tad Lucas and Fox Hastings. Working with these outstanding Cowgirls was a complete thrill for the young horsewoman.

Vera McGinnis, trick rider and movie star from Hollywood, Calif. and Reba soon became close friends even though Reba was fifteen years her junior. Vera in vited the little cowgirl from Washington to come to Cali fornia and she would teach here trick riding. areer until 1954.

A Rodeo Historian and Western Heritage Researcher has been her goal in life to record the history of rodeo on tape and typewriter.

Reba has been on assign ment for many newspapers and magazines in the West and has trunks of articles and clippings to prove it. She is a recognized researcher, au thor, and authority of early days of the West. Her histori cal articles are well known through out the media.

Following the rodeo circuit led Reba to Alturas, Modoc County, California where she was friends with another rodeo great, the late Hippy Burmister. Traveling in her car with her typewriter, tape recorder, trunks of clippings and letters and other meager belongings she moved into a little cabin in 1990 in Alturas.

Reba Perry Blakely was inducted into the Cowgirl Hall of Fame in 1979 as a Western Heritage Honoree. Their narration of her was, "Reba became an accom plished trick roper, rider and pony express contestant. She was a World Champion Woman's Relay Rider as well. Reba drew on her knowledge to become a recog nized researcher and author of western and rodeo history. Her articles have appeared in dozens of magazines and newspapers while she has spent over 50 years document ing the coming of the pioneer and the horse to the west."

After months of correspon dence the decision was made to induct Reba Perry Blakely into the Western Heritage di vision and the Rodeo Histori cal Society of the Cowboy Hall of Fame.

The rodeo historian could not go to the Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City, Okla. so the Hall of Fame came to Modoc, the presentation must be made.

On April 30, 1997, Cecil Jones and his wife Fran of the Rodeo Historical Society from the Rowell Ranch Rodeo from Hayward, Calif. made the trip to Alturas to make the presen tation. When Cecil presented the honoree with her gold medal lion, plaque and corsage, Reba was ecstatic and thrilled beyond her wildest dreams. Even in her wheelchair with oxygen helping to fill her weak lungs she was overjoyed.


News summaries for week of June 5, 1997

The forecast: Partly cloudy is the forecast today and continuing through Sunday. Look for thunderstorms and snow at about 7,000 feet as a cold front hangs on. Lows in the mid 30s to 40s. Highs will be in the 70s and 80s.

Site selected for new Alturas P.O.
Modoc DA fined in DUI case
Attempted murder in Alturas
Post Officer burglars nabbed
Alturas pool set to open

New site picked for Alturas P.O.

Finding the new Alturas Post Office will not take much work, since it's location will be across the street for the cur rent facility.

Bob McGill, U.S. Postal Service Real Estate Specialist, who visited Alturas the later part of May, announced this week that the new site will be on Main Street across from Carstens Chevrolet.

That site was predicted by Alturas Mayor John Hagerman as the probable site last week. The Postal Service will have the site appraised and an environmental study conducted before the site selection is finalized. Construction of the new Post Office will begin as early as August. The Post Office is expected to open in November, 1997.

"We're pleased to find a suitable site in the downtown area," said McGill, who worked closely with the city to iden tify the new site. "We appreciate all the input and assistance we have gotten from the local community."

Originally, the Postal Service had selected a site on West C Street near the California Highway Patrol Office, but protests by the Alturas Chamber of Commerce and City of Alturas prompted a review of that site.

The site selected on Main Street is 46,000 square feet in size and will accommodate the new 6,681 square foot Post Office, which is twice the size of the current facility. It will allow for additional services, onsite parking for postal cus tomers, improved accessibility for disabled persons and ad equate work space and parking for employees.

According to the Postal Service, the existing Post Office was too small to accommodate the carriers and there was no way to expand the facility.

The area selected by the Post Office once housed a Gil's Gas Station and now is used by Carsten's Motors as a auto mobile sales lot.

Modoc DA fined for drunk driving

Modoc County District Attorney High Comisky was fined over $900 in Reno Justice Court last week, after entering no contest pleas to driving under the influence and carrying a weapon while intoxicated.

Comisky was arrested March 17, about 2 a.m. at the corner of Fourth and Eureka Streets in Reno by Reno Police. He had a blood alcohol content of .13 at the time of arrest. He was driving a county van at the time.

Comisky who has served a rocky first term as Modoc DA is up for election in June, 1998.

Three arrested al leging at tempted murder, robbery

Three Alturas men were arrested May 30 on charges al leging attempted murder, robbery, burglary, torture and as sault with a deadly weapon in an incident that occurred the night of May 29 and ran through the morning of May 30.

According to Alturas Police Sergeant Stacy Callaghan, his officers ar rested Daniel Holt, 39, and Nathan Chanaud, 33, about 7:30 p.m. May 30. The third man, Richard Wyatt, 28, also of Alturas, was arrested in Redding May 30 and was transported back to Alturas on June 2. All three were booked into the Modoc County Jail, with bail set at $50,000 each.

Callaghan said the bizarre incident began about 6:30 p.m. May 29 at the El Rancho Apartment of Ron Erickson, of Alturas. The three suspects, involved in a drug deal said Callaghan, confronted Erickson.

Erickson was stabbed in the chest by one of the men, us ing a knife with a six inch blade. The wound was about an inch deep. That assault cut Erickson's fingers as he tried to de fend himself. The sus pects then held a knife to his throat, took his ATM bank card and demanded that Erickson re veal the PIN number. Erickson also suf fered knife puncture wounds to the face and the suspects al legedly told him they were go ing to cut his eyes out.

The suspects then broke the back window out of Erickson's pickup, forced Erickson to go with them to the local ATM to remove money and then took Erickson with them to Redding, said Callaghan. The trip to Redding was appar ently an effort to purchase narcotics, said Callaghan.

Wyatt remained in Redding while Holt and Chanaud brought Erickson back to Alturas, arriving about 6 a.m. May 30. Chanaud allegedly stayed with Erickson for some time that morning and Erickson was threatened with death if he re ported the incident, said Callaghan.

Once Chanaud left, Erickson went to his brother's home in Alturas and his brother convinced him to re port the inci dent. He went to the Sheriff's Officer to file the re port about 7:30 p.m. and Holt and Chanaud were arrested by Alturas Police about 8 p.m. Wyatt's whereabouts were re ported to the Redding Police Department and he was also picked up.

According to Callaghan there were no narcotics seized with the arrest of Holt or Chanaud, but there were drugs in volved in the arrest of Wyatt.

Erickson was treated for his injuries.

Lakeview duo arrested in Post Office burglary

Modoc County Sheriff's Deputies arrested a pair of Lakeview men in connection with a burglary to the Fort Bidwell Post Office May 30.

According to Modoc County Sheriff Bruce Mix, the pair may be connected to other Post Office burglaries in the area over the past year. The inves tigation into those crimes and the connection, if any, to the Lakeview men is continuing.

Mix said his office re ceived a report that the Frt. Bidwell Post Office was being burglarized about 2 a.m. May 30. Deputies intercepted a ve hicle at the intersection of County Road 1 and 49'er Lane about 2:30 a.m.

The two men in the vehicle, Christopher Overton, 21, and Jerry Caswell, 27, were ar rested at the site. Mix said they initially denied in volvement in the Fort Bidwell Post Office break-in, but later admitted they were involved.

Mix said nothing was re ported missing from the Post Office, but there was damage to the doors as burglars had used pry bars to gain entry. Mail had been gone through, said Mix, He suspects the bur glars were looking for money or drugs.

The two Lakeview men were booked into the Modoc County Jail.

Pool opens, weather may be on cool side

The Alturas Swimming Pool opens for the 1997 season Friday, but the weather looks like it may be a little cool.

Then again, Alturas kids have always been tough when it comes to swimming in cold weather. They have to be. The effort to heat and cover the pool is ongoing, but this season will be just like in the past. Pray for warm weather.

The pool opens with a free swim day Friday, with the doors unlocked at 1 p.m.

From Saturday June 7 to June 15 the pool will be open from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. for open swim and 5.m. to 6 p.m. for lap swim. The pool is open limited hours for the lifeguard training course mornings and evenings. Starting June 16, the pool will be open for regular summer hours. The aquacise class and swim lessons will also begin June 16 with classes available for swimmers of all ages and skill levels. Class times are 9-9:45 a.m.; 10-10:45 a.m.; and 5:45-6:30 p.m. Monday trough Friday. Sessions are scheduled for June 16-27; July 7-18 and July 28-August 8. Aquacise class will be held Monday through Friday, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

The pool manager this year is Eleanor Dorton and she's assisted by Peter Richert. Returning lifeguards are Amie Ambers, Jennifer Kern, David Knighton, Julia Greene, and Joe Duran. New lifeguards this season are: Leah Siegel, Melanie Britton, April Dorton, Lindsay Lieurance, Andrew McLaughlin, David Pimental and Molly Busby.

The regular pool schedule will be 12 noon to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday for lap swim; 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. for the general public; 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. for lap swim and 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. for open swim.

On Saturday and Sunday the lap swimmers have from 12 noon to 1 p.m. and open swimming is from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Admission this year is as follows: general admission, 10 years and under $1.50, 11 years and up, $2; season passes, 10 years and under, $40, 11 years and up, $50 and a family pass is $65.

For group rates and pool rental, contact the pool manager.

News summaries for June 12, 1997
Elk are making inroads to Modoc
Charges dismissed against local attorney
MJUSD befuddled on p[rincipal selection
Midsummer Nite Dream opens in Ft. Bidwell
Summer school opens in Modoc

The forecast: Look for continued unsettled weather and variable cloudiness today with afternoon thunderstorms. Friday and Saturday shows scattered showers, but clearer and some warming over the weekend.

Elk herd prospers in Modoc County

Rocky Mountain Elk are re-establishing themselves in Modoc County and with more and more sightings, the future looks promising.

While there is no purely accurate count of the total elk population in the county at the present time, biologists be lieve their numbers are grow ing at a healthy rate.

"We have no way of esti mating elk numbers at pre sent in Modoc County," said U.S. Forest Service Biologist Tom Ratcliff. "We do know that elk are increasing. Improved ri parian habitats are favored by elk, especially in the spring when cows are feeding heavily in prepara tion for calving."

According to Ratcliff, these elk have been in Modoc County since the mid-1970s but sightings then were usu ally single animals or very small groups. The sightings were sporadic, usually one or two annually.

California Fish and Game and Modoc National Forest personnel recently combined sightings data bases and since 1990 over 200 sightings have been made in the county. Elk are being seen more fre quently and in larger groups.

According to reports, in March, 1997, 50 head of bulls, cows and calves were seen in a large group. Several sight ings of over 20 head of elk have been recorded in the past five years.

According to Ratcliff, sightings of bulls, cows and calves indicate resident ani mals, not just random wan derings of a few elk. Sightings are also accumulat ing to indicate a year-round occupancy of several areas within the county. There have been winter sightings in the Fandango Valley-Lassen Creek drainage in the Warner Mountains and on private lands thereabouts; winter and early spring sightings in the Crowder Mountain-Fletcher Creek vicinity on Devil's Garden. Another group of elk is less frequently sighted, but is known to be very active in the Egg Lake area north of Lookout. In that area, more than 30 elk have been sighted, including bulls, cows and calves.

In 1992-94, California DFG and Modoc National Forest personnel cooperated with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and Prescott College from Arizona, in doc u menting movements and habitat use by five radio-col lared elk in the Fandango-Lassen Creek area. Extensive sight ings indicate a pattern of year-round use in that area and studies are continuing to document habitat preference, movement patterns and pre ferred habitat.

Ratcliff said the Modoc area is well suited for elk and the groups seem to be thriving.

Elk are known to prefer grasses and forbes, very sim ilar to cattle diets. Use of browse is much less than deer, except during the winter months when diets are simi lar.

Ratcliff said that since elk are larger than deer and withstand cold, snowy weather better, they tend to be very competitive with deer on limited or poor quality winter ranges. Elk can compete with cattle during some seasons of the year.

These elk have not been introduced into Modoc, and the belief is that they moved into the county from Oregon where they have been hunted for several years. Their numbers in Oregon have also been on the increase. The Egg Lake herd may be residual animals from the Shasta Lake-Lake Britton area where elk were introduced several years ago.

There are some anticipated management situations that will come into play as the elk herd grows. In an effort to meet the situation head-on, a local group of agency, private and local governments people meet about every three months, or more often if needed, to share elk informa tion. The group is part of the national Seeking Common Ground working group and tries to address issues prior to crisis.

Ratcliff is optimistic the group can address the issues and help resolve situations fairly. He believes the elk are here to stay and will do well in the county as they continue a south ward move.

The group is hosting an all-day field trip to take a look at elk winter range, calving habitat, summer range, elk use of private lands and elk-livestock-deer interactions. That tour is set June 28 and will depart from Davis Creek about 9:30 a.m. and carpool to various sites. The public and elk enthu siasts are encour aged to participate.

For more information on the tour call 233-2517.

Conviction involving local attorney dropped

Convictions of elder abuse against local attorney Barry Kinman were dismissed in Modoc Court this week and Modoc District Attorney Hugh Comisky was disqualified from the case because of apparent bias.

A conviction against Kinman on charges of attempting to dissuade a witness was upheld and a sentence of a $350 fine and two years summary probation was ordered. Kinman appealed that conviction and the sentence was stayed pend ing the outcome of the appeal. Since Comiksy was disquali fied, the Attorney General's Office will now handle the ap peal.

Kinman was acquitted on five of the nine charges filed against him (all misdemeanors) in April. He was convicted on two counts of elder abuse and two counts of in timidating a witness, also misdemeanors. He then asked for a new trial. Those motions were heard this week.

The four charges he was acquitted on were complaints originally filed by the victim, Mona Phillips of Lookout. Those included two counts of assault, two counts of battery and one count of false imprisonment.

Kinman's attorney Tom Buckwalter, of Susanville, at the time called the conviction on elder abuse the strangest deci sion he's witnessed in decades of law practice -- in private prac tice, in the Plumas District Attorney's office, and as a public defender.

As a result of the verdict in April, Kinman sent out a letter to about 300 local residents detailing his side of the situation and he accused Comisky of playing out a vendetta against him.

Comisky continually denies any sort of bias in the case.

MJU Board can't agree on new principal

It's back to the old drawing board in an attempt to find a new principal for Modoc High School. The Modoc Joint Uni fied School District (MJUSD) Board of Trustees wasn't completely happy with any of the crop of candidates who ap plied for the prin cipal spot, and has decided to readvertise the posi tion.

The position was origi nally advertised back in April with May 9 being the last day for turning in appli cations. MJUSD re ceived ap proximately 18 applications and a commit tee of seven peo ple narrowed that number down to about six applicants, five of whom were brought up to Alturas for in terviews.

In the end, the Board couldn't come to a positive de cision on any of the finalists. Board President Bill Hall identified two rea sons for not choosing out of this appli cant pool -- different Board mem bers had different fa vorites, and there wasn't a single candidate that at least some of the Board members did n't have concerns about.

"The bottom line here is that there were a lot of differ ent opinions on the people we had," Hall said. "We had reservations about some if not all of them.

"We could not get beyond our initial dif ferences."

Hall went on to state that the Board felt a duty to the stu dents to search again.

"These are our kids we're talking about," he said.

The Board had reserva tions about the var ious candi dates because, as Hall indi cated, "A lot of people had left a situation they weren't happy with to come to a new situa tion. We want someone to come up here for the right rea sons who is ready to take on a new challenge."

Hall further stated that the Board's mis givings about the candidates were also shared by the seven member commit tee that screened the applica tions.

The position will be read vertised with no specific cut-off date set for applications. Rather, applications will be taken until the position is filled.

The Board believes there may be two new sources of ap plicants who did not ap ply last time. One group would be peo ple who applied for other prin cipal positions at the end of the school year. If they didn't get that position they will now be looking for other principal spots and may consider Modoc. Hall said MJUSD may also em ploy head-hunters to help bring other qual ified candidates out of the woodwork.

The MHS principal posi tion is open be cause the Board elected not to renew the con tract of Bob Larkins, who has since ac cepted the principal position at Big Valley High School Even though the board is hav ing a tough time find ing the right candi date to re place Larkins, Hall said he is not second-guessing the deci sion to let Larkins go.

"I'm very comfortable with the decision we made," he said. "It was done for all the right reasons. I'm still pretty happy with that."

A Midsummer Night's Dream opens June 13

It's Shakespeare under the stars this weekend when A Midsummer Night's Dream opens in Ft. Bidwell, June 13 and 14.

Meet enchanted fairies, young lovers and Athenian rus tics in the night air outside the Ft. Bidwell Hotel. Bring a blanket or a lawn chair; the Modoc Performing Arts The ater will provide the enter tainment.

The cast of A Midsummer Night's Dream has been re hearsing for two months under the direction of Chip Massie and Nancy Bal lard. Their enthusiasm for the play is conta gious. The audience can not help but join in the fun.

The show is anything but "Shake spearean". Rather, it's fun, humorous, bois terous and loud.

The fairies will be decked out in forest camouflage. The Athenian nobles will have leather armor and sandals. Lor raine Flournoy, portray ing Hippolyta queen of the Amazon, will look like Xena the Warrior Princess. And the rustics will definitely be "of the people" No glitter or sequins. The performance is realistic and earthy.

There are three different worlds in A Mid summer Night's Dream: the forest, upper-class Athens and blue-col lar Athens. These worlds are usually quite separate, but thanks to the mischievous fairy Puck, worlds col lide.

The rustics of the blue-col lar Athens were written as male characters. But women fill these roles in the MPAT produc tion, which adds a whole new twist to the comedy. Sandy Boldon plays Bottom, the leader of the rustics.

The rustics have entered a drama competi tion. The win ners get to perform their play at the Duke's wedding. And so on a midsum mer night they enter the forest to prac tice.

Theseus, played by Gerry Gates, governs the world of up per-class Athens. He is ea gerly anticipating his nup tials with Hip polyta. But oth ers within his court are dread ing their marriage cere monies.

Hermia, played by Jen nifer Welty, is in love with the wrong person, or so her father thinks. She and her lover, Lysander played by Jeran Brown, flee to the forest to elope.

But her betrothed, Demetrius played by Matt Jef fers, heard of the plot, thanks to He lena, played by Julie McLaughlin. They en ter the forest to stop the elopement.

The performances of the young lovers are boisterous, pas sionate and feisty, full of phys ical action.

Enchanted fairies occupy the forest. But alas, the King and the Queen of the fairies are arguing. Larry Shippen plays Oberon and Jennifer Risley and Vasiliki Vassil share the duties of Titania.

And on a midsummer night, Oberon de cides to play a lit tle trick on his wife. He charges Puck, played by April Dor ton, with the execution of this scheme.

Puck has a diabolical sense of humor. Through his mis chievous actions, the three worlds interact and inter twine in very hu morous and interesting new ways.

A Midsummer Night's Dream runs June 13 - 14 at 8 p.m. outside of the Ft. Bidwell Ho tel; tickets, $5. The Cal Pines Lodge hosts the show on June 20 for an 8 p.m. outdoor perfor mance; tickets, $5. The show runs in Alturas on June 21-22 at the A.C.T.'s Niles Theater at 2 p.m.; tickets $6 and $4.

Tickets are available at Pizza and Pasta Place, Sur prise Valley Drug, the A.C.T.'s Niles Theater Box Office and at the door.

Still time to register for Summer School June 16

The Modoc Joint Unified School District summer school program will begin Monday, June 16 and con tinue through July 14.

Classes are provided Mon day through Thursday with Kindergarten through fifth grade being served in Alturas at Alturas Elementary School and sixth through twelfth grade being served at Modoc Middle School. School is in session from 8:30 a.m. to 12 noon.

Breakfast and lunch are served at Modoc Middle School for all students, in cluding those not attending summer school. Breakfast is served from 7:40 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and lunch is served from 12 noon to 12:30 p.m. Mini summer school pro grams will be provided at State Line Elementary School, July 7 - July 14 and South Fork Elementary School, June 16 - July 3.

The elementary summer school program is provided to help students continue to learn and maintain their skill during the summer in a more relaxed and activity centered program than that provided during the school year. The elementary pro gram includes a daily swimming session at the Al turas City Pool for those who wish to participate. Students in grades six through twelve may earn credits in core con tent areas. Attendance for secondary students is critical for them to earn the credits in the short period of summer school.

All students who wish to attend summer school are en couraged to arrive at school on Monday, June 16, whether they have pre-registered or not. If you have any ques tions, please call the Alturas Elementary School office at 233-7601 or the Modoc Middle School office at 233-7501. Brochures with staff and more information are available from school sites.

Record news summaries, June 19 issue:
  • No change for BLM Area Offices
  • Mountain Lion Attacks at Pines
  • Girls file suit against MJUSD
  • Hazardous household waste collections
  • District gets headhunter for principal

Idea to combine BLM offices gets no local support

An idea to combine the Alturas and Surprise Valley Resource Area offices of the Bureau of Land Management was tossed out last week by State BLM Director Ed Hastey.

Hastey met with local individuals last Friday in Alturas and in Cedarville, and received a resounding "no" to the notion of combining the two offices.

Hastey told people at the meeting that he was under no or der to combine the offices and was in the county to find out how the local people felt. There was no support to combine the offices at either the Alturas or Surprise Valley meeting.

Hastey took little time in deciding the idea wasn't good and basically told local people that it was not going to hap pen.

The general feeling among the public is that the two of fices are efficient and accountable to the public they serve. While the two offices are close in proximity, people said, they each have widely different impacts and areas.

Rich Burns, the Alturas Resource Area Manager, who will be moving to the Clear Lake Office later this summer, said what the decision boiled down to was that people think the system in place works well. In addition, he said, BLM employees were also opposed to combining the offices. Susie Stokke manages the Surprise Valley Resource Area. Both BLM managers received praise from people at the meetings.

"What we heard was that people like they way we're doing business now and don't see a need or reason for change," said Burns. ""Ed Hastey was here to get local comment and he heard absolutely zero support to combine offices. And he listened. There will be no combining of the offices or staffs."

At both the Alturas and Surprise Valley meetings, the feeling strongly imparted to Hastey was that the combina tion would not improve the delivery of services or efficiency of the operations.

A couple of years ago, the Resource Area offices were given the same authority as was once held by the District Offices. When the District Offices were scrapped, Area Managers were given the same duties and authorities as once held by District Managers.

Having that decision-making power closer to the ground is a major improvement, according to local users.

"We were pleased with the meetings and received good comments," said Burns. "There is no reason to change the operations."

Lion attack at Cal Pines

A mountain lion is suspected of attacking a man late Tuesday night at California Pines. The man was not seri ously hurt.

According to Nick Shadursky, who had just finished his shift as a bartender at California Pines Lodge and Restaurant, the incident occurred as he was taking out the trash.

"I had closed the bar and watched a television program after my shift," he related. "I then took the garbage out to the bin, which is near the pool about 11 p.m. I heard something walking around the pool, so I walked over to see what was go ing on. I thought maybe someone had come out late to swim or something."

When he walked around the pool, he said he saw what he thought was a large dog about 40 yards away near the swing set on the lawn. He called out to the animal and it turned. He said at first he didn't recognize the animal, but it started walking toward him. He realized that it was a mountain lion and moved to get away. He said when he turned around to see what the animal was doing, it had followed and then stopped about 12 feet from him.

"It seemed like it stood there for about 10 seconds, but it was probably only one or two," Shadursky, who weighs about 250 pounds, said. "Then, all of a sudden it came at me. I punched it and it knocked me down. I figured once I was down it was going to jump me, but when I looked up it was heading off toward the lake."

Shadursky said he got up, shaking, and ran to his pickup. He had a cut to his hand where he'd struck the lion and scratches he figured he received when he fell.

"I just got in my truck and headed to town, but I had to stop after about a mile because my heart was beating so fast," he said. "At first, I wasn't going to say anything, but I figured I'd better report it so people would know the lion was there. People asked me if I'd been drinking and seeing things, but I hadn't had a thing all night. I'll tell you one thing, I don't ever want to see another one of those things."

Cal Albright, a Department of Fish and Game Warden was investigating the incident on Wednesday, but had not come to any definite conclusion by press time.

Drive-by shooting under investigation

An apparent drive-by shooting in the Daphnedale area of Alturas is under investigation by the Modoc County Sheriff's office.

Sheriff Bruce Mix said the incident occurred at the Tina Mobley residence just after midnight June 13. A vehicle drove by her mobile home and the occupants of the home, five adults and two small children, thought they heard one gun shot. Upon investigation, they discovered shotgun pellets in the sheet metal near the front door.

Mix said the case is currently under investigation and he expects arrests in the incident. He gave no motive for the shooting. No one in the residence was hurt.

MJUSD, others sued over shower videotape

Five female basketball players who were surrepti tiously videotaped in a locker room at Modoc High School have filed suit against Modoc Joint Unified School District and four teenage males in Modoc County Superior Court.

The complaint may also be amended to include up to 20 other persons. The School District was served with a complaint on May 30, 1997, and has 30 days to respond.

The complaint does not re quest a specific damage amount, but does ask for gen eral damages and exemplary or punitive damages accord ing to proof, along with costs of the suit.

The case arises out of an incident that occurred on February 20, 1996. The four males named as individual defendants, hid a video cam era in a locker room at Modoc High School that was being used by the MHS girls basket ball team before and after a high school basketball game. The plaintiffs were video taped while showering or changing.

The plaintiffs did not be come aware of the incident until July 14, 1996. By that time, the video had been copied and distributed throughout the community. The complaint alleges that as a result of this, "Plaintiffs were scorned and abandoned by their friends and family, exposed to contempt and ridicule and suffered loss of reputation and standing in the community, all of which caused them humiliation, embarrassment, hurt feel ings, mental anguish and suffering."

House haz ardous waste col lection to be held this Sat urday in county

Need to get rid of old paint, batteries, chemicals and any other househld hazarouds waste?

That waste will be col lected Saturday, June 21 be tween 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., rain or shine, at the Alturas Transfer Station, the Cedarville Fair grounds and the Newell School Parking Lot. The event is funded through a grant awarded to Modoc County by the Califor nia Inte grated Waste Man age ment Board.

Business waste and explo sives, infectious waste, ra dioac tive materials, PCB's and compressed gas cylin ders will not be ac cepted at the event. The Public Works or En viron mental Health De partment should be contacted for informa tion about prop erly dis posing of these mate rials. Proper dis posal of these chemicals is very important. For ex ample, one quart of oil dumped on the ground can contaminate up to 250,000 gal lons of wa ter.

Modoc County Environ mental Health Di rector, Greg Farnam, has this advice for res idents who are consider ing disposing of household haz ardous wastes down the drain: "Chemicals should not be dumped down the drain- espe cially if your home is served by a septic tank treatment and disposal system. These systems do not treat chemicals and are only intended to render pathogenic bacteria, viruses and protozoa non-infectious. Dis posal of chemicals into your system could cause pollution of the ground water and envi ron ment, increase septic tank pumping fre quency and shorten the life of your sys tem. Moderate, necessary house hold chemical use should not affect your sys tem."

California Integrated Waste Manage ment Board Chair man Daniel G. Pen ning ton said "It is gratifying to see that a grant from the Integrated Waste Manage ment Board is al lowing Modoc County to give its citi zens the opportunity to prop erly manage their household hazardous wastes. Each year events like this keep nearly 20 million pounds of household hazardous wastes from enter ing our landfills."

New MHS Principal goes to headhunter

At the request of Sean Curtis, Drennan addressed those assembled at Tuesday's Modoc Joint Unified School District meeting about the search for a new princi pal. He said that the District has engaged the ser vices of a "head-hunter" from the Small School Dis tricts As sociation and is also advertis ing the position out-of-state. One of the parents pre sent at the meeting asked the cost of the head-hunter and Drennan said it was about $3,000.

Board President Bill Hall stated, "There are a lot of ad ministrators and vice-princi pals who haven't fully though about going after a principal position."

He went on to point out the MJUSD's re cruiting practices might bring some of those peo ple into the application process and bring someone to Modoc "that might be a good match for our district."

Record sports summaries, June 26, 1997

3-on-3 hoop tourney sign ups ends
Little League hosts tournament
Cheerful camp a big help
Get into the swim of things

Time's running out for 3-3 team sign-ups - - do it now or just watch

Basketball players interested in compet ing in the Modoc three-on-three tournament July 5 in Alturas must get regis tered by July 1.

The tournament is scheduled July 5 in the Griswold Gym, following the Fandango Parade and the Great Pit River Duck Race. Play will start around 2:30 p.m.

The event is sponsored by the Modoc Record, Pizza and Pasta Place and Coast to Coast. Proceeds from the event will go to the Modoc High School basketball program.

There is a $30 entry fee per team, and teams may have four players. Three players will be on the court and sub stitu tions will be allowed during dead balls. Sponsors are avail able for teams.

The event is open for basketball players ele mentary school age through adult. There are divisions for male and female players.

The age groups for the tourney are as fol lows: grades 1-3; grades 4-5; grades 6-8; grades 9-10; grades 11-12; and an open divi sion.

Younger players can move up a division, but older play ers cannot move down.

The winning team in each division will receive half the division entry fee, plus win ning t-shirts.

Games will be seven minute or longer running halves with one minute halftime. There will be a five minute warm up pe riod. Younger teams will have referees, older teams will call their own fouls until the final games.

For more information contact Rick Holloway at the Modoc Record, 233-2632. Fill out and mail in the entry form in this week's Record or call for registration forms.

Modoc Little League to host District tournament

Modoc County Little League has concluded local play and is now preparing five All-Star teams for com petition in the District 48 tournaments.

The local major league baseball All-Stars will play in McArthur with their first game on July 8 against the winner of the Burney -Intermountain game. This team is coached by Bill Farmer whose U.S. Bank team won the league title.

Both the major and senior softball All-Star teams will play in Burney. Both teams will play their first game against Feather River. The senior softball team, coached by Ron's Keith Jacques, will play on July 10 at 5:00 p.m.

The majors softball team is being coached by Rotary's Jeff Wingate and Ed Harris, with their first game on July 11 at 5:30 p.m.

Modoc Little League is hosting the senior and ju nior baseball tournaments. The tournament begins July 7 with Modoc playing Inter mountain at 5:00 p.m. Mod oc's junior baseball team will play July 12 at 11:00 a.m. against Susanville. The Senior team is coached by Bethel's David Duncan and Brad Server. The Ju nior team is coached by Hol iday Market's Ernie Givan and Craig Miller.

The public is invited to attend the local tourna ments. There will be at least 16 games throughout the week, with eight senior teams and two junior teams competing for the right to ad vance to sectional play.

Modoc Little League would not be possible without community and individual support. The Modoc Little League board of directors thank all those who helped make the season fun and successful for the children.

Cheer Camp training offers fresh season

The cheers rang outside the Griswold Gym at Modoc High, Monday through Wednesday, while inside, Modoc and Burney High School Junior Varsity and Varsity cheerleaders participated in a pri vate cheer camp.

Three instructors from Universal Cheer and Universal Dance came to teach new cheers and dances for the upcoming season performances.

It used to be that Modoc cheerleaders had to travel long distances to attend resident camps. But, last year Burney High hosted a private camp with Modoc attending and this year, it was Modoc's turn to host the camp with Burney attending.

"A private camp like this gives all the girls so much more individual instruc tion. It works out especially well," shared MHS Cheer Advisor VeeAnn Ambers dur ing Wednesday morning's instruction.

The cheerleaders took to the floor while Liz Langford, the Universal Cheer in structor, led them through new move ments. Langford attends University of Oregon and works with Universal during the summer.

"Next year, Burney will host the private camp with Modoc attending. We'll alter nate each year," explained Ambers who will be assisted by parent volunteers dur ing the cheering season.

"MHS Cheer" Varsity cheerleaders are Erica Ambers, Malia Alvarez, Melanie Britton, Courtney George, Amber Knauss, Gretchen Jenkins. "MHS Cheer" Junior Varsity cheerleaders this season include Barbara Carrol, Lindsay Lieurance, Jen nelle Jacques, Amberlee Privett, Tara Northrup and Liz Eatmon. All participated in the camp.

The camp has been funded through local business and individual contributions. In return, the cheerleaders will decorate win dows for Homecoming '97 this fall, at the contributing businesses.

Swim into shape or for fun this summer

Get into the swim of things with an aquacise class or swimming lessons at the J.P. McHugh Alturas Swimming Pool this summer.

Registration is now being taken for swimming lesson sessions, for any age per son. Cost is $20 without a season pass; or $15 with a season pass.

Two sessions are offered: July 14 - 25, Monday through Friday, offered at three dif ferent times: 9:00-9:45 a.m.; 10:00-10:45 a.m. or 5:45 p.m.- 6:30 p.m.

The final swimming lesson session will be offered July 28 - August 8, Monday through Friday, with classes from 9:00 - 9:45 a.m. or 5:45 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

All interested are welcome to join the Aquacise class at any time. Cost is $25 for the entire summer. Aquacise is offered Monday through Friday from 5:30 - 6:30 p.m. with in structor Eleanor Dorton.

Monday through Friday Lap Swim is from 12:00 -1:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. Open Swim runs 1:00 - 5:00 p.m. and 7:30 - 9:30 p.m.

Saturday and Sunday, Lap Swim only, 12:00 -1:00 p.m. Open Swim, 1:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Season passes for 10 years and under, $40; 11 years and above, $50; Family (immediate), $65.

General admission, 10 years and un der, $1.50; 11 years and above, $2.00.

For group rates and pool rental or more in formation contact Eleanor Dorton, pool man ager, 530-233-429.

Record Sports Summaries for July 3 edition
Modoc elk an opportunity or threat?
Elk, ground water on Land Use agenda
Celebrate the Fourth of July with Us
3,000 rubber ducks out to race
Thena fined for logging violations

The forecast: Weather for the 4th of July weekend looks good. Mostly clear on Friday with party cloudy skies on Saturday predicted. Look for sunny skies to return Sunday. Highs should be in the 80s and lows in the 40s.

Modoc Elk seen as good to some, threat to others

Rocky Mountain Elk are coming to Modoc County. For the past few years sight ings of elk have increased and there is also an increase in the numbers of animals re ported in those sightings.

Having more elk around can be an opportunity or a threat, depending upon one's point of view. Last Saturday, over 60 people interested in elk-ef fects got together to spend the whole day discussing issues and trying to find solutions that will make everyone happy.

The day was sponsored by the Modoc Working Elk Group. The "Group" has brought together a variety of interests including ranchers, hunters, the Pit River Tribe, the U. S. Forest Service and the California Dept. of Fish and Game. The goal of the elk Group is to address issues before they become problems and let everyone have their views be heard and hopefully, respected. The Group has also received a $10,000 grant from a national organization called "Seeking Common Ground" which has also des ignated the Elk Group as the only demonstration group in California.

There are a wide variety of issues to consider. For exam ple, what is the best way to deal with the problem of elk tear ing down fences on ranches and public lands? When should a hunt be started and how big should it be? Are elk coming down to Modoc County from Oregon because there is an elk hunt in Oregon? What effect will elk have on the deer population? How should pub lic grazing lands be divided between elk, deer and cattle? Can humans effectively con trol or predict the way a herd of 50 elk, some weighing over 700 pounds, will act?

On Saturday, U. S. Forest Service wildlife biologist Tom Ratcliff led the Group on a tour that included three stops in Fandango Valley and one stop in Little Bear Valley be fore having everyone head back to Davis Creek for a bar becue (elk burgers of course!) sponsored by the Farm Bureau and the Cattleman's Associa tion and served by the Davis Creek Women's Auxiliary. At each of the stops and after the barbecue, discussions were conducted covering a variety of concerns. Among the participants was a repre sentative of the Rocky Moun tain Elk Foundation and hunters from as far away as Reno.

Ratcliff explained to the Group that there seem to be three groups of elk in Modoc County. The largest group is in the Fandango Valley area, and the majority of those elk seen to use the area in the winter. This may be the newest Rocky Mountain Elk herd in California. Elk herds of up to 30 have also been spot ted on the west-side of Goose Lake and just north of Look out.

Everyone was generally civil in the discussions, but it is clear that there are differ ing opinions on certain is sues. When the discussion during the second stop of the tour started to become a bit heated, Tim Burton of the Cal ifornia Department of Fish and Game turned to rancher Herb Jasper and joked, "It only took two stops."

The good news is that both of them were able to laugh to gether about it.

While it appears that ev eryone wants to make every one else happy, one of the prob lems in all of this may be a time factor. Those on the wildlife side say that time is needed to appropriately ad dress these issues while ranchers are saying that they are already having to deal with problems.

"The problem is now, not when the herd doubles," Jasper said. "When you start affecting the livelihood of peo ple in the area, then the prob lem is now.

"I don't like the approach of, 'We don't know.' We've got to come up with something here pretty soon."

Jasper and other ranchers also said that they feel that if the general public of Modoc County wants to have elk, the ranchers alone shouldn't be asked to pay for the damage the elk cause.

On the other hand, a scien tist like Ratcliff would prefer to get more data in order to make educated decisions about managing the herd. His last comment of the day to the elk Group was, "There were many times today where we didn't give you a quick answer.

"If we as an agency make too many front-end decisions. . . we may end up hitting the wrong target."

Earlier in the day, Ratcliff was candid in stating, "We don't have the foggiest ideas" of the number of elk in Modoc County and, "We have had some very big questions posed to us that we can't answer at all."

The differing view on the timeline for dealing with elk issues was illustrated in a discussion between Rick Delmas, farm advisor from the University of California and Burton, a wildlife biologist.

"I've never seen them (the USFS and BLM) bring these herds down," Delmas said. "You've got a problem now. We know from past experi ence that we're on a collision course."

Burton said he disagreed with that assessment and pointed out that these problems are being dealt with all over the country all of the time. He said that problems can be taken care of individually until enough information has been obtained to start making some of the big decisions.

"To say that it is a problem now is really kind of biasing the process," Burton said. "I think it's an opportunity. Right now we can help people with problems.

"Let's not let this cloud what this process is about. I don't want to see a perimeter fence or choice problem get blown out of proportion. Let's not get excited about incidents that are easily resolved."

Pit River Tribal Chairman Lawrence Cantrell reminded everyone of what may be the "ultimate" solution if the Elk Group can't work things out - frustrated ranchers shooting elk that come on their prop erty.

It should be pointed out that there are no ranchers in the Elk Group who have advo cated this or even suggested that it might happen in the fu ture. Nevertheless, Cantrell pointed out that there used to be a sizable elk population over near Shasta Lake. When the elk began causing damage and the ranchers felt they had "no alternative," they began shooting the elk, causing them to leave the area. Cantrell said the herd near Lookout may well be elk that journeyed from Shasta Lake.

"Bottom line, everybody'll take care of their own," Cantrell said.

Everyone seemed to agree that the purpose of the Elk Group is to make sure that out come is avoided.

At the stop in Little Bear Valley, Prescott College (Arizona) students Taylor McKinnon and Aaron Di Orio shared some of their ini tial findings from a study of what areas the elk are using. From their study of pellet groups, the preliminary indi cation is that elk like "edge" areas that feature meadows with big sage for feeding right next to forest areas where the elk can bed down.

After the barbecue, Nancy Gardner of the Elk Group led a discussion identifying threats and opportunities that may arise from having elk in Modoc County. In making the two different lists, it soon be came apparent that one per son's threat may be another's opportunity and vice versa. It all depends on your point of view.

Elk, groundwater on Land Use meeting agenda set July 9

A discussion concerning the Modoc Elk herds, the county's involvement in managing groundwater and gov ernment agency acquisition of private land are on the Modoc County Land Use Committee's meeting July 9, 1:30 p.m. at the Farm Advisors Conference Room on Fourth Street.

The Land Use Committee meeting is open to the public and the public is encouraged to attend. Additionally, said Sean Curtis, the public is asked to bring the land use com mittee items that it feels the committee should consider or study. The committee is a formal committee set up to study and advise the Modoc County Board of Supervisors on local land use issues. It's important to note that it is not set up only to protect agricultural interests in the county, but also deals with a variety of other issues including recreation, wildlife, economic and environmental.

Also on the agenda is a report on the annual report of the California Department of Fish and Game meeting, as re quired under the county and DFG's Memorandum of Understanding.

That discussion includes items concerning Ash Creek Management Plan, release of surplus land, the Surprise Valley Squirrel Hunt and wildlife habitat maps.

A major item of the agenda is discussion centering around government acquisition of private land with spe cial emphasis on third party acquisitions -- those, for ex ample by the Trust for Public Lands or Land Conservancy,. Those non-profit organizations purchase lands and then transfer them to government agencies such as the refuge.

Also on the agenda is the acquisition of about 300 acres of land north of the Modoc National Wildlife Refuge which is earmarked for donation to the refuge.

The Modoc County Board of Supervisors Tuesday di rected the Land Use Committee to get more involved the lo cal ground water management ordinance and bring about some specific language. The board also directed the com mittee to look into the BLM land exchanges in Western Nevada.

The committee will also discus the Draft Integrated Pest Management Plan for the leased lands in the Tulelake area. The plan has caused major concerns with farmers in the Tulelake area.

According to Curtis, one of the goals if the committee is to inform the public and make the public more comfortable and familiar with the processes involving land use issues.

Celebrate Fandango with line-up of events

Ticket holders may be singing, "rubber ducky, you're the one," with great hopes, when it comes time for the Great Pit River Duck Race Saturday, July 5 in Alturas and the many prizes that will be awarded.

Independence Day will be celebrated in all its glory Sat urday, July 5, with the an nual Fandango Day Cele bration in Alturas.

A full day of old-fash ioned fun for all ages is planned. It's a time for re unions and visits in the park, as many who have been away from Modoc, re turn for the weekend festivi ties.

Crowds will line Main Street Saturday to watch the Fan dango Parade starting from Plumas Bank to Veter ans' Park at 11:00 a.m.

Parade entry judging will begin at 9:30 a.m. sharp. Last minute parade entries will not be judged. Pick up an entry form or contact the Alturas Chamber to enter a parade cate gory. Entries are due back into the Cham ber office no later than 5:30 p.m. today, July 3.

The local Honor Guard will lead the parade with Grand Marshal Mary Flournoy of Likely and Lit tle Mr. and Miss Fandango, Justin Derner, 4, and Bre anna Fogerty, 5.

Bill Tierney will an nounce the candidates for the Modoc Fair Queen contest as they ride in the pa rade and include Nicole Robinett, 17, of Cedarville; Stacy Cook,16, of Cedarville; Laurie Nel son, 16, of Adin and Andrea Colesworthy,16, of Alturas. The young campers at the Wood 'n Peg Ranch with camp director Peg Woodrich will return with an animal petting zoo at the Veterans' Park after the parade. Kla math Falls 'Tin Lizzies,' miniature motor ized vehi cles, will drive the parade route while the Modoc High School Concert Band, under the direction of Karen Siegel, brings the music and rhythm to keep toes tapping.

Themed to coincide with California's 150th birthday - anything goes for the "Sesquicentennial" parade.

Once the parade makes it to Veterans' Park, festivities will open with food from In dian Tacos to Federated Church's Hamburger booth and VFW Auxiliary Baked Potatoes with toppings, ice cold watermelon by the slice and much more.

The Alturas Lions Club will be helped this year by the Alturas Elks Lodge to put on the annual pit-barbecued beef meal on the patio tables, serving the public from 12:00 noon - 5:00 p.m. for $6 for adults; $4 for children.

Soldiers of the Cross, the South Fork Assembly of God in Likely Youth Group will organize free old fashioned games for kids of all ages. Games such as bean bag toss, clothes pin fishing, three-legged races, sack races, wheel barrow races, and Chamber-sponsored contests of watermelon eating, seed spitting and pie eating, and a wa ter balloon toss, will be in cluded.

Federated Church will of fer a dime toss game and more are expected to be set in booths around the park.

Parade trophies will be awarded at 1:30 p.m. in the park. Fandango is spon sored by the Alturas Cham ber of Com merce, Alturas Lions Club, Alturas Elks Lodge 1756 and the Modoc County Tobacco Control Pro gram this year. The Great Pit River Duck Race will re lease the 3,000 rubber ducks at 2:00 p.m. to flow down the Pit River to the bridge on Main Street to determine big prize win ners.

The 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament, sponsored by the Modoc Record, Pizza & Pasta and Coast to Coast will take place for all age groups following the duck race at approxi mately at 2:30 p.m. in the Modoc High Griswold Gym.

Booths and a flea market will line the park with ev ery thing from crafts to home made jams and jellies from ven dors from Sparks, Nev. and local residents. Music in the park will be provided by local band X3B and the Modoc Clas sic Cruisers Car Show and Shine and draw ing for their GMC '56 pickup will be sta tioned in the park located be hind the Museum.

Modoc High Class of '98 will offer face painting and Modoc Medical Center will hold a drawing for a Llama. The Bookworm will be sell ing books at low prices for all ages. Enter a Horsehoe pitching contest by calling Jim Porter, 233-2739. A ten nis tournament will be ongo ing at the courts on Fourth Street beginning at 4:30 p.m. and continuing Sun day.

The Vet erans' Hall will house a ping pong tourna ment be ginning at noon, July 5. Singles and Doubles begin prac tice at 12:00 with games beginning at 12:30 p.m. Pre-register by calling 233-6230 (evenings).

The evening of July 5 will move to the Modoc County Mu seum for the second an nual "Evening to Remem ber," hosted by the Modoc County Historical Society from 6:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Fireworks, compliments of the California Pines Prop erty Owners Association, will be a gift to all, with the light show over Cal Pines Resort Lake beginning at dark.

For more information call the Alturas Chamber of Com merce, (916) 233-4434 or stop by the Chamber office at 522 So. Main St., Alturas.

Race will send 3,000 rubber duckies down the Pit River

It's all set and Saturday at 2 p.m. the Alturas Rotary Club will dump 3,000 rubber ducks into the Pit River at the Estes Street Bridge to start the second annual Great Pit River Duck Race.

All 3,000 of the racing ducks, at $25 each, were sold as of Tuesday evening, quicker even than last year's duck race.

There are no more ducks available.

The first duck to make it to the finish line at the Main Street Bride will win a new 1997 Chevy 4x4 pickup. There are several other great prizes in the race.

"Boy, we are just tickled," said chief Rotary duck Billy Madison. "I don't know how much better we could have done than we have so far. I am just astounded at the community support."

Congressman Wally Herger will be on hand Saturday to help the Rotary Club snag the winning duck as it goes through the finish line.

All the ducks are placed into a large rotating bin and all are dropped into the river at the same time. The ducks are numbered on the bottom and no-one will know whose duck is the winner until the numbers are matched up at the finish line. No one is allowed to help the ducks move along once they are dropped into the river. It's just pure luck.

Funds raised from the duck races are earmarked for construction of new baseball and soccer fields at the Youth Park in Alturas. With the success of the two races, about $60,000 has been raised to cover what organizers figure will be about a $100,000 project.

Last year the first Duck Race raised over $30,000 for the pro ject and ticket sales for this year's race should near that to tal.

To date, a new parking area has been leveled and grav eled, (and was much ap preciated during the Junior Livestock Show and Sale last week) the area has had the ini tial survey started for a drainage plan, the new main water line has been installed, and the plans are in the works to deep rip the fields, then disk them and have them laser-lev eled. Rotary fully expects the sprinklers to be in and the grass planted this fall.

There are Duck Race souvenirs available at the Alturas Chamber of Commerce Office in Veteran's Park. Those sou venirs include ducks, t-shirts and Frisbees.

Each duck race ticket gets the buyer a yellow racing duck. Those racing ducks are put into a large bin and all dumped at the same time into the Pit River off the Estes Street Bridge . The first ducks to the finish line at the Main Street bridge are the winners. Each duck is numbered with the owner's ticket.

Thena fined for logging violatons

Thena. Inc., was fined a total of $107,600 in Modoc Municipal Court for numerous logging violations in California Pines from late 1994 through February, 1995.

According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, current president of Thena. Inc.,. James Miller, entered a no contest plea to each of the 575 misde meanor counts concerning violations of the California Public Resources Code and the Forest Practice Rules.

Judge Larry Dier accepted a Misdemeanor Advisement of Rights, Waivers and Plea form from Miller and Wilson Muhlheim, counsel for Thena, Inc. July 2.

Miller was appointed president of the company following a federal raid that shut down Thena and then leader Theodore Combis declared bankruptcy.

Dier pronounced judgment Tuesday and sentencing in the following terms: Thena Inc., was fined $100 per count for a total of $57,500; ordered to pay $50,000 in restitution to the victims in the case; and ordered to pay a $100 restitution fine.

Thena remains in bankruptcy proceedings.

Combis, who operated in California Pines and was charged with a variety of crimes, entered guilty pleas to mail fraud and other charges and is expected to serve be tween 51 and 63 months in prison.

Combis, who is accused of stealing $15 million worth of timber from lots in California Pines entered the guilty pleas to avoid a lengthy court case. The federal govern ment, who is prosecuting the case, said it will place the fraud loss at between $800,000 and $1.5 million.

Combis, who resides in Klamath Falls, established Thena Inc. in 1993 and mailed hundreds of letters to California Pines property owners offering to salvage dead and dying timber from their lots. The government said Combis took the dead and dying plus large numbers of healthy, valuable trees from the lots. It's estimated that 7,000 truckloads of logs were hauled from Cal Pines.

The government raided Cal Pines and Combis' busi nesses in Klamath Falls in February, 1995. All of Combis' assets were seized. Thena, Inc. then filed bankruptcy, still owing tens of thousands of dollars to Alturas and Klamath Falls businesses and Cal Pines employees. In total, Thena

owed about $3.4 million to about 500 creditors.

In July, 1996, a federal Grand Jury indicted Combis on 48 counts of mail fraud, interstate transportation of stolen goods, money launder ing, failure to pay payroll taxes, ob struction of justice and tampering with a wit ness. He subse quently was charged with bankruptcy fraud in November, 1996, for trying to hide assets from the bankruptcy court.

Record news summaries, edition of July 10


Duck Race nets over $30,000 for park
Sierra Pacific forced to go through private land
Buying electricity will be the choice
Miss Modoc competition this week
OIT hosts geothermal seminar

The forecast: Partly cloudy skies on the horizon today with scattered thunderstorms Friday. It goes back to partly cloudy Saturday then sunny and hot on Sunday. Highs through Saturday in the 70s, Sunday to 80s, Monday in the 90s.

Rotary Duck Race adds plenty to Youth Park

The Great Pit River Duck Race appears to have raised over $30,000 this year for construction of new ballparks and soccer fields at the Youth Park in Alturas.

The race, held Saturday on the Pit River from the Estes Street Bridge to the Main Street Bridge as a part of Fandango days, was deemed highly successful by Rotarians. The funds raised this year are combined with about $30,000 raised from last year's first Duck Race.

"We are very pleased with the race and the amount of sup port Saturday," said Rotary's Billy Madison. "There were plenty of spectators and everyone seemed to have a good time."

Crews were working on the Youth Park, between 8th an 4th Street in Alturas this week. The ground was ripped and will be leveled soon. The goal is to have the sprin kler system in and the grass planted by this fall.

While the ducks "swam" a little slower this year, getting hung up on a bend in the river, most of the crowd stayed to the end. Madison said he may have called to shut off the water a little too soon, but the win ning ducks found their way to the finish line where Congressman Wally Herger was waiting to pick them up.

The winner of the 1997 4x4 Chevy pickup was Smoky Andro of California Pines. He was on hand and thanked the Rotary for the new truck as well as for its service to the community.

The 4x4 quad, offered as a prize to Gold Crown Sponsors (those who purchased at least 10 ducks) was won by Bobby Ray of Alturas.

The following were the winners of the other prizes: Re-roofing job, Larry Boulade; Big Buck Fountain, Cliff Grove; 1/2 beef, Dean Neer; live steer, Bob Walton; 18-speed moun tain bike, Harold Rosendahl; Thompson Centerfire Rifle, Bob Walton; weed trimmer, Ray Allen; cell phone, Milo Pepperdine, free muffler, pipe, Blake Williams; two nights Super 8 Motel; load of firewood, Mark Moriarity.

Sierra Pacific forced onto private land

Sierra Pacific Power Com pany plans to seek approval from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to move a small portion of the route for the Alturas Intertie Pro ject from the Modoc Na tional Forest to privately owned land near Alturas, Calif.

Modoc National Forest Su pervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette told Sierra Pacific today that her agency will not grant a right of way for the utility to construct a 2.8 mile sec tion of the 345 kilovolt transmission line in the Dev ils Gar den area of the Modoc National Forest west of Al turas. In a letter to Sierra Pa cific, Henderson-Bramlette stated that there are other "en vironmentally acceptable routes that would accomplish your company's purpose. . "

"We believe this decision by the Modoc Forest supervi sor is unsupported by the facts or by the law," said Alturas Pro ject Manager John Owens. "This is not a case of industry requesting permis sion to construct an environ mentally in ferior alterna tive. It is a situation where the Forest Service has rejected the independent judgment of the lead federal and state agen cies that directed the envi ronmental review process to determine the environmen tally preferred route.

"These agencies have al ready designated the envi ron mentally superior alter native that would involve a small and unremarkable amount of land managed by the Modoc National Forest.

"Sierra Pacific has fought hard for permission to build the project with the lease im pact on the environment," Owens said.

"We are now forced to construct Alternative Route Seg ment B on private land. Sierra Pacific will file a re quest with the California Pub lic Utilities Commission for permis sion to build Route Segment B. We intend to work closely with private property owners to compensate them fairly and address their concerns," he added.

Alternate Route B would af fect the first five miles of the transmission line route near Alturas and require construc tion of a substation adjacent to the old lumber mill site off Highway 299 west of Alturas.

Owens said Sierra Pacific will work with the county planning staff to develop a landscaping plan to mini mize the visual impact of the substation.

The Forest Service deci sion does not change the re main ing 131 miles of the transmission line route al ready ap proved in California or the route in Nevada, Owens said. Pending final project approval by the CPUC and the Public Service Commission of Nevada, Sierra Pacific plans to start construction of the power line in the fall of 1997 and to have the project com pleted by late 1998. The Al turas Intertie will provide the northeastern California and northern Nevada area with an additional 300 megawatts of electricity from the Pacific Northwest.

Look for power mar keters soon

Don't be surprised if electric power company marketing representatives start calling in this area to sell power in the very near future as state deregulation kicks in.

According to Pacific Power's Jan Mitchell, the power companies will be trying to sell power by September, or ear lier, and customers will be able to sign up for power suppliers in November. The actual power switch in companies would be on the January bill. The deregulation of the electric in dustry was ordered by Assembly Bill 890

"The bottom line is that customers in Alturas (and all of California) will be able to select a new energy supplier as of November," said Mitchell. "Of course, they could also choose to stay with us. But they will have a choice."

The one choice local users will not have is Surprise Valley Electric. That is unless SVEC opts to market its power along with the rest of the utility companies. To do that however, they would have to open up their customers to other power marketers.

Pacific Power will retain and maintain its distribution system in the area, but does not plan to market its power to current customers. It has proposed to the California Public Utility Commission that it freeze its current rates for the next four years.

Richard Booth, Pacific Power area manager, said he feels the company may lose some power customers and will retain power customers. He stressed that PP&L will retain its local crews at current levels to maintain and respond to problems with the distribution system, poles, lines, etc. PP&L will still be in the power business in this area.

According to Mitchell, once deregulation begins in January, customers will have options on their billing. They could choose to get one bill entirely from the supplier, or one bill entirely from the distributor, or one bill from each the supplier and distributor. It may not be much different from the deregulation of the phone companies.

Mitchell said the power companies will soon start a non-biased public education campaign to inform consumers of what's heading their way. While deregulation sounds a lit tle confusing now, public education will help clear the wa ters. And the CPUC is mandating a public education pro gram.

"If our customers choose to stay with us, they won't see much change," said Mitchell. "We are proposing to freeze our rates at the current level for the next four years." Mitchell explained that PP&L's rates are some of the lowest in the state, especially when compared to the major utilities. PP&L rates she said are still 30 percent lower even after three big three utilities lower rates by the mandated 10 per cent.

Just what happens in the shakedown of competition will be interesting, although not wholly predictable.

With deregulation and utilities being able to sell power over other utilities' distributions systems, the CPUC has made more rigid requirements on the companies who own those distribution facilities. The CPUC, said Mitchell, is en suring that the distribution systems are maintained at very high standards.

Mitchell also said the CPUC is concerned about the in tegrity of the power companies' marketing strategies and will be watching for too many "dinner time" calls and the like.

She said consumers should be ready for the marketing onslaught and pay attention to the education programs that should be hitting the airwaves and print media over the next few months.

Big weekend for naming Miss Modoc

It's time to select a Miss Modoc during the Modoc County Fair Queen Contest on Saturday, July 12 at the Modoc District Fairgrounds in Cedarville.

Three young women will compete in horsemanship, poise, personality and ap pearance as the judges have a difficult decision to make as to who will be Queen and First and Second run ners-up for princess.

The public is welcome to watch the horsemanship competition at 4:00 p.m. with free admis sion. A barbecue will follow at 5:30 p.m., hosted by the Boy Scout Troop No. 48, with tickets $7 per person.

The Queen Contest will be held at 7:00 p.m. along with a fashion show featuring fashions from L&B Ranch Supply and Ardie's Classie Lassie & Calico Cow in the fair ground's dance hall. Judging is based 55 percent on horsemanship and 45 per cent on poise, personality, appearance and personal interview combined.

Three Modoc County resi dents entered include Laurie Nelson of Adin, Nicole Robinett of Cedarville and Stacy Cook of Cedarville.

LAURIE NELSON: Modoc residents may recog nize Laurie Nelson from her summer job at Copp's Cor ner/Texaco in Adin or her many appearances showing her quarterhorse or two Ap paloosas. Nelson will turn 17 on July 20. She stands six feet tall; has light brown hair and brown eyes and is the daughter of Kathie and Alan Nelson of Adin.

The sixteen-year-old will enter her senior year at Big Valley High School this fall, then plans to attend Colorado State University to major in Ag Accounting and Equine Science. "Later I hope to own a horse farm," she confides.

Her interests are many as Nelson names raising horses, training and show ing performance horses, raising and showing a market steer parliamentary procedure, public speaking, working with people reading and student government are among her favorites. Her grandmother owns Nelson's Frosty in Adin and Laurie admits, "I can't cook well enough to work there."

Intermountain Cattle women selected Nelson as the 1997-98 Beef Ambassador and she received the Xerox Award for Humani ties/Social Sciences. She is proud to be a Modoc County 4-H All-Star and being elected Jr. Show Board President.

Nelson attended the FFA National Convention and received the Golden State FFA Degree. She was MHA's Miss Silver Streak Princess at the age of 12 and is a member of numerous associations, among the Future Business Leaders of America, National Honor Society, California Scholar ship Federation, California Horseshow Association and Providence 4-H Club.

"Modoc is the best county for friendly people, and community pride. I'm proud to live here and would be proud to represent it, as the 1997 Miss Modoc," she states.

Nelson's pageant spon sors are B&V Trucking, Adin and Modoc County Sheriff's Posse.

NICOLE RENEE ROBI NETT, 17, will enter her se nior year at Surprise Valley High School and wants to pursue a college ed ucation to major in Veteri nary Medicine and Animal Sci ence. Her goal is to be come an Animal Health Techni cian.

Robinett, daughter of Di ana Robinett-Prewitt and Chuck Prewitt of Cedarville has brown hair, blue eyes and stands five feet, six inches tall. Robinett has been trained and provides physi cal and communica tion therapy for her father who was injured in an acci dent last year and is recu perat ing.

Her interests range from writing poetry to auto me chanics. She enjoys hunt ing, fishing, riding, helping people in cluding the time she man aged a 120 acre cattle and sheep ranch for an el derly and ill couple. She thrives on ranch work and enjoys meeting and work ing with people.

One of her poems, written when she was 15 years old, is published in the book, Sketches in the Sand.

Her contest sponsors are L& B Ranch Supply in Al turas. " They have been great to me and I owe them a big thanks," offered Robi nett.

STACY LYNNE COOK, 16, blond hair, brown eyes and five feet, five inches tall, is entering her senior year at Surprise Valley High School.

The daughter of Sammy and Wes Cook of Cedarville, she has been competing in horse shows ever since she was five years old.

After high school grad ua tion, she will be a Youth For Understanding ex change student to spend a semester in Argentina studying for eign language. When she returns to the U.S., she plans to attend Cal ifornia State University, Chico.

Cook has excelled in aca demics and sports through volleyball, track and bas ketball and maintains membership in 4-H, Cali fornia Scholarship Federa tion and Junior Cattleman's Association. Last year, she sang the National Anthem for the Modoc County Fair.

She is a life-long resident of Modoc County and is spon sored by Chuck Vermillion's "Huckleberry Does Hay." This summer Cook is help ing with haying and riding on her family's ranch.

OIT to host Geothermal Seminar

The national Geothermal Resources Council (GRC) will co-sponsor a seminar enti tled, "An Introduction to Geothermal Energy and De velopment at Medicine Lake," Tuesday, July 22, and Wednesday, July 23, at Ore gon Institute of Technology.

CalEnergy Co., Inc. and Calpine Corp., companies in volved in exploratory drilling and related environmental issues and the OIT Geo-Heat Center are also co-sponsors.

The two-day seminar is designed as a non-technical introduction for those con cerned with geothermal de velopment, especially in the Medicine Lake region.

According to Professor John Lund of the OIT Geo-Heat Center, the seminar will be "an invaluable primer for planners, technical staff and mangers with city, state and federal government agencies, as well as the general public."

Seminar topics and speak ers include: "The Nature of Geothermal Resources, Ex ploration Strategies and Techniques," Joe Moore, University of Utah Energy & Geoscience Institute; "Drilling and Completion of High Temperature Wells," Bill Livesay, Livesay Consul tants; "Testing and Reser voir Engineering and Field Development;" Jim Lovekin, GeothermEx, Inc.; "Power Plant Selection and Design," Richard Campbell, the Holt Company; "Direct-Use of Non-Electric Geothermal Re sources," John Lund, OIT Geo-Heat Center.

Other scheduled presenters are: Randy Sharp, Modoc National Forest and Ed Mer rihew, Calpine Corp., "De scription of Proposed Geothermal Development at Medicine Lake."

Seminar participants will also have the opportunity to visit Medicine Lake power plant sites on July 23. Cost for the seminar is $50.

To register, or for addi tional information, contact the Geo-Heat Center at 541-885-1750. Registration forms are also available on the worldwide web at <www.oit.edu>

Record News Summaries for July 17 issue
Modoc wants time for powerline comment
MJUSD denies wrongdoing in taping
Top lawmen pay visit to Modoc
Adin plans a big party
Family law gets some real help

The forecast: Several scattered thundershowers are in the forecast today with highs cooling to 78. The same forecast holds for Friday with partly cloudy predicted for Saturday and Sunday with highs in the upper 70s.

Representing Modoc MISS MODOC STACY COOK, 16, (center) was crowned Saturday night and will travel to area fairs representing Modoc County with Princesses (right) Laurie Nelson, 17, of Adin and Nicole Robinett, (left), 17. Cook is the daughter of Wes and Sammy Cook of Cedarville. Nelson is the daughter of Kathie and Alan Nelson of Adin; Robinett is the daughter of Diana Robinett-Prewitt and Chuck Prewitt of Cedarville. Each received a gift certificate to purchase a touring outfit and a silver buckle. Miss Modoc also received a savings bond. The trio will be conduct ing fund-raisers to help with their travel expenses. They are planning to hold prize drawings to help cover their expenses for the coming year-long term. Modoc County Tobacco Control helped sponsor this year's Queen contest and prizes.


County wants time for views on the Intertie

Modoc County Supervisors Tuesday agreed with some lo cal landowners to request an extension of the comment pe riod on Sierra Pacific Power Company's forced change to Route B for the Alturas Intertie project.

Sierra Pacific is seeking approval from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to move a small por tion of the route for the Intertie Pro ject from the Modoc Na tional Forest to privately owned land near Alturas, Calif.

The route B alignment moves the line to an area near the golf course, it would run west past the Auction Yard then turn south.

That decision came after Modoc National Forest Su pervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette told the company that she would not approve a per mit to construct a 2.8 mile sec tion of the 345 kilovolt transmission line on the Dev ils Gar den area of the Modoc National Forest west of Al turas.

In effect, Henderson-Bramlette stated that Sierra Pacific had other routes available, on pri vate land, that would be acceptable.

Mike Maxwell, Modoc County Administrative Services Officer, said the county was not pleased with the Forest Service de cision, which went con trary to a Board of Supervisors' position statement sent to the Forest. The Board, he said, is now dealing with the issue.

Alturas Mayor John Hagerman, speaking for himself, said he was very displeased with the Forest

Service decision and would be working on the issue with the city council.

Alturas Intertie Pro ject Manager John Owens stressed last week that the company did not want to move the power line onto private land, but the Forest Service's decision leaves them little choice. Owens has said the company will not abandon the project.

"Sierra Pacific has fought hard for permission to build the project with the lease im pact on the environment," Owens said. "We are now forced to construct Alternative Route Seg ment B on private land. Sierra Pacific will file a re quest with the California Pub lic Utilities Commission for permis sion to build Route Segment B. We intend to work closely with private property owners to compensate them fairly and address their concerns," he added.

Alternate Route B would af fect the first five miles of the transmission line route near Alturas and require construc tion of a substation adjacent to the old lumber mill site off Highway 299 west of Alturas.

Owens said Sierra Pacific will work with the county planning staff to develop a landscaping plan to mini mize the visual impact of the substation.

The Forest Service deci sion does not change the re main ing 131 miles of the transmission line route al ready ap proved in California or the route in Nevada, Owens said. Pending final project approval by the CPUC and the Public Service Commission of Nevada, Sierra Pacific plans to start construction of the power line in the fall of 1997 and to have the project com pleted by late 1998. The Al turas Intertie will provide the northeastern California and northern Nevada area with an additional 300 megawatts of electricity from the Pacific Northwest.

MJUSD claims no liability in locker video tape case

The Modoc Joint Unified School District (MJUSD) has taken the position that it is not liable in the locker-room videotape lawsuit that has been filed in Modoc County Supe rior Court.

The five plaintiffs in the suit are teenage girls who were surreptitiously video taped while showering and changing clothes in a locker-room at Modoc High School. They have named MJUSD as a defendant in their suit charging that the District was negligent in allowing this to happen on school grounds. The girls have also brought suit against the teenage males that they allege set up the video camera in the locker-room to make the tape as well as those who were later involved in making copies of the tope and distributing it in the commu nity.

The School District has re quested a de murrer for fail ure to state a claim. Under this procedure, MJUSD is ar guing that even if all of the plaintiffs claims are true, there is noth ing in those claims that would make the District legally re sponsible for any dam ages. Therefore, the court should dismiss the claim against MJUSD.

MJUSD attorneys Dennis Halkides and John Kelley of Redding argue in their docu ment that California cases and statutes re quire that it must have been reasonably fore see able for the District to have known that the videotap ing would occur. MJUSD did not have a duty to protect against some thing it did not know, or have reason to know, would hap pen.

MJUSD cites the case of Leger v. Stockton Unified School District which is factu ally similar to the present case. In Leger, a wrestler was assaulted while changing in a school bathroom and then sued the school district. The MJUSD doc ument quotes the California Court of Appeals in that case, which stated:

"Neither schools nor their restrooms are dangerous places per se. Students are not at risk merely because they are at school. A contrary con clusion would 'require virtu ally round the clock supervi sion or prison-tight security for school premises."

The District has also made a motion to strike the plain tiffs' claim that MJUSD acted maliciously and the plain tiffs' claim against the Dis trict for punitive damages. The District states that claims for punitive damages cannot be made against a public en tity under California statu tory law.

The plaintiffs have filed a response to MJUSD's request for a demurrer. The plain tiffs' argument focuses on the rules for when a demurrer should be granted and con cludes that this is not a case where it should be. The plaintiffs' response also states that, at this point in the case, the failure to specifi cally state how the Dis trict knew or should have known about the videotaping is only "minor technically."

MJUSD then filed a reply to the plaintiffs' response which restates many of the positions in their original request for the demurrer.

The plaintiffs have also filed an amended complaint in the action. The original com plaint named four teenage males as defen dants. The amended complaint has in creased that number to seven.

The plaintiffs have also now given exact figures for the damages they are seek ing. Each one of the group of five is seeking com pensatory damages of $50,000 and puni tive damages of $150,000. The punitive damages are only be ing sought against the seven indi vidual defendants and not the School Dis trict. If those totals were granted to all five plain tiffs, the total dam ages would reach $1,000,000. The plain tiffs have also stated that their medical damages are still un known at this point, so the total figure could be even higher.

Of the seven individual de fendants, only one has filed an answer to the plaintiffs' complaint and he has denied all of the allega tions against him.

Top lawmen show up in Alturas

Modoc County seemed to be the capitol of the California legal world for two days last week with back-to-back visits by Attorney General Dan Lungren and the Honorable Ronald George, Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court.

On Thursday, Justice George visited with local judges John Baker and Wayne Dier at the Modoc County Courthouse before at tending a luncheon at Lyn ne's Deli.

Lungren had two reasons for visiting Modoc on Wednesday. He is visiting all 58 county district attorneys and sheriffs (as he did during his first term at A. G.), but the Republican is also doing some grass-roots work for his run for Governor next year.

In both instances, Lungren said, "I need to find out what's important for each county and I find that if I meet with them on their own turf they're more likely to tell me."

Lungren said that he will sometimes ask legislators, "Have you ever been to Modoc County?" if they are taking a "one-size fits all" to pro grams that will affect the en tire state.

Lungren was also letting people know about the new Megan's Law CD-ROM direc tory 64,000 sex offenders in California (see related story) and hi support of the 10-20-life measure that is currently be fore the Senate Public Safety Committee. The bill would add 10 years to the sentence of anyone who uses a firearm during the commission of certain felonies. If the gun is fired, 20 years gets added. If the victim is wounded, it's an automatic 25-to-life.

On Wednesday, Lungren said the bill had passed the committee by a 5-1 vote. He said he felt that if it got onto the floor of the Senate it would be passed and the governor would sign it.

After meeting with Lun gren, Modoc County Sheriff Bruce Mix and district Attor ney Hugh Comiskey ex pressed admiration for Lun gren as A. G. and "unequivo cal" support for him in his run for governor.

"He's the best thing to come along for California since Ronald Reagan," Mix said.

Comiskey stated, "Had it not been for him, we wouldn't have had the successes we've had here in my three years in office.

Adin Summer Festival brings out fun, talents

Among the many activi ties during the Adin Sum mer Festival, the fifth an nual Quilt Show and Craft Bazaar will be displayed at the Big Valley Primary School Gym on Saturday, July 26 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Many quilts will be dis played and quilting demon strations are also planned. Craft table space may be re served for $15 and a drawing for quilting supply prizes will be part of the fun.

The quilt show is a benefit to help with the operation and maintenance expenses for the Big Valley Community Swimming Pool. All pro ceeds will be given to assist with the pool.

Quilt show admission is a $2 donation for adult and $1 for children. Children un der age 12 must be accompa nied and supervised by an adult.

To reserve craft table space, display a quilt in the show or volunteer quilting demonstration talents, please call Michelle at 299-3342 or Kelly at 299-3506 for more information.

The Adin Summer Festi val will also include a weekend Co-Ed Softball Tournament, a beef barbecue hosted by the VFW from noon - 7 p.m. on July 26; a dance Saturday night. Sun day, July 27 the Horse Show at Double E Ranch will reg ister participants at 7 a.m. with the show starting at 8 a.m. A parade, crafts, a pool tournament and more activi ties are planned for the pub lic. Call Becky at 299-3426 for Festival info, or Shari, 294-5814 or 299-3351 for soft ball tournament informa tion.

New Family Law Facilitator takes over in Modoc

The state mandated that each county have a Family Law Facilitator on board, and unlike many other such mandates, the state also sent the money to fund the position.

Modoc Superior Court Judge John Baker said several qualified candidates, who had to be attorneys, applied for the position. He hired Tom Buckwalter, an attorney from Susanville, for the position and Buckwalter started the job this month.

Basically, the Family Law Facilitator will be able to deal with most family law matters, including divorces, domestic violence, child abuse, restraining orders, child and spousal support, determining parentage, etc.

Buckwalter said it's impor tant to note that he can help fill out the paperwork, outline the procedures, advise people rep resenting themselves and help mediate differences. The one thing he can't do is be an advocate in court family law or take sides.

Buckwalter comes with good credentials. He began his law practice in civil law in the Los Angeles area in 1968-69, then moved to the Humboldt County Public Defender's Office in 1969, when he later met John Baker, who also worked at that office.

He served in the Public Defender's Office in Santa Barbara from 1971 through 1980 when he moved to Quincy to set up a private practice. In October, 1986, he became Plumas County District Attorney and served until 1991 when he opened his private law practice in Susanville. While the Plumas County DA, he said he did all the Child Protective Services cases, moving Plumas County from a state rank ing of 55 (out of 58 counties) up to a ranking of three by the time he left.

Individuals who contact the county for family law mat ters and pick up the necessary paperwork will receive in formation and a contact number for Buckwalter. There is no charge for his Family Law Facilitator services.

His office is at 208 North Court and the phone number is 233-1158. Office hours are from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Buckwalter may also engage in private law practice, ex cept in the private practice of family law. The position is on a one-year contract basis, renewable upon mutual agreement. Buckwalter is not a county employee and will be paid what was allocated to the Superior Court by the Judicial Council and Department of Social Services, $48,720.

Buckwalter's wife of 43 years, Katy, serves as his secretary and he has two grown daughters and a nine-year-old granddaughter.

Record News Summaries July 24, 1997 issue

MJUSD on way to new principal
Medicine Lake power plant has impacts
Baxter Black comes to Modoc Fair
Work starts on city streets
Impasse declared in hospital negotiations

MJUSD to interview prin cipal candidates

Modoc High School could have a new principal by Au gust 1.

Modoc Joint Unified School District (MJUSD) Superin tendent Craig Drennan stated that the headhunter hired by the District to aid in finding a principal provided names of approximately 20 candidates to consider. Applications and information where sent to those people.

Six candidates have re sponded and sent in their ap plications after the District imposed a deadline of July 19 for receiving applications. Drennan stated that the citi zens' Committee was sched uled to review those six appli cations yesterday and made recommendations to the School Board which was scheduled to meet on Wednesday night.

Drennan said that if inter views and background checks could be arranged in a timely manner, a new principal could be named as early as next week.

In other MJUSD news:

Motion denied: The Dis trict's motion for a demurrer in the videotaping lawsuit has been denied by Judge John Baker of the Modoc Superior Court.

The District was sued for negligence by five teenage females who were unknow ingly videotaped in a locker-room at MHS. The District has asked that the case against it be dismissed be cause the plaintiffs had failed to properly plead that it was reasonably foreseeable for MJUSD to have known that the videotaping would occur.

The plaintiffs filed an amended complaint which appears to have taken care of the problems the District had addressed. After holding a hearing on MJUSD's motion, the case file reads, "Absent a stipulation by counsel, there is nothing before the Court at this time. Motion is moot based on the filing of the first amended complaint."

Funding: Governor pet Wilson has recently proposed to the legislature a $1 billion "middle-class tax cut." Un der the new plan, a family of four making 440,000 per year would receive a $60 tax cut,. while a family making $60,00 would get a $159 break. Fami lies pulling in $80,000 per year would get a $332 cut. A family making $20,000 per year would receive no tax sav ings.

Wilson claims that the tax cut will not harm education funding or the attempt to ex pand class-size reduction into more grade levels. The Asso ciation of California School Administrators (ACSA) begs to differ and is urging people to contact their legislators.

ACSA claims that the pro posal, which will go into effect in 1999, after Wilson leaves office, would result in a reduc tion of $1.8 billion in funding over three years, or a per pupil reduction of $283.

ACSA goes on to state that the tax cut would eliminate the possibility of further class-size reduction in a state that already ranks 41st in the na tion in per pupil spending, or about $1,100 per year below the national average.

A graph sent out by the gov ernors office predicts that spending per pupil will rise from $5,140 per pupil for the coming year to $5,811 in 2001-02. However, the graph does not say whether the figures are in constant dollars or whether they are adjusted for inflation. Assuming an in flation rate of five percent per year, the State would need to be spending $6,247 per pupil in 2001-02 just to stay even with inflation. At three percent the figure would be $5,782 and the State would be just barely ahead of inflation at the pred icated figure of $5,811.

Significant impacts from Medicine Lake steam power plant

Significant visual and noise impacts are possible from a geothermal power plant project proposed near Medicine Lake, one of the area's most popular recreation sites. The Fourmile Hill Geothermal Development Project is being proposed by Calpine Corp., based in San Jose.

The project is getting some opposition from local Native American tribes as the Draft Environmental Impact Statement/Report has been released for public review and comment.

The plant would produce 49.9 megawatts of electricity us ing hot water from deep wells on Forest Service land. The Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service are accept ing comments on the project through September 16 and public hearings are scheduled in Dorris, Klamath Falls and Yreka.

The meeting in Dorris is August 6, at City Hall; in Klamath Falls at the Shilo Inn, August 6 and in Yreka, August 7 at the Miners Inn Convention Center.

The Fourmile Hill project would be located on the Klamath National Forest about three miles north-northeast of Medicine Lake. The project would mean disturbance of 388.5 acres of land, including 335.8 acres from transmis sion line right-of-way and access roads. Much of the trans mission line would be on Modoc National Forest lands. The power plant would occupy a10-acre site while seven wells would cover about 18 acres. Some 25 acres would be disturbed by pipelines, roads and construction of a new substation.

Another project in the Medicine Lake area called the Telephone Flat project is proposed by CalEnergy in Omaha, Neb., and is in the beginning planning stages.

For the Fourmile Hill project, a 230-kilovolt transmis sion line would run south from the power plant to within a half-mile of Medicine Lake, then east into Modoc County, past the community of Tionesta, finally linking to the Bonneville Power Administration line along Highway 139.

The tallest structure of the plant itself would be about 94 feet, housing the turbines and generators. A cooling tower will be about 70-feet tall.

A decision on whether to allow construction of the plant could come later this year. Calpines states the plant will em ploy 19 people. The company would pay an estimated $1.3 million in property taxes and another $15 to $25 million in royalties to the federal government. One-half of those funds would be returned to the state of California and 40 percent would be distributed to the counties where the power plant and transmission lines are located.

Copies of the DEIS are available at the Modoc National Forest Supervisors' Offices in Yreka and Alturas and at the BLM Alturas Area Resource Office in Alturas.

Written comments should be sent to Randall Sharp, USFS/BLM, 800 W. 12th St., Alturas, Ca., 96101.

Baxter Black Show comes to Modoc County Fair

Modoc - The Last Frontier Fair will be featuring Cowboy Humorist Baxter Black, Au gust 16, starting at 7:30 p.m. at the Grandstands. Also, for the crowds entertainment will be up and coming recording artist and actress Charity Allen.

Baxter Black is a unique individual who can shoe a horse, string a barbed wire fence and bang out a Bob Wills classic on his flat-top guitar. He has more hair around his lip than on his head, and his roping skills could use some improvement.

These facts along would make the former livestock veterinarian a fairly typical modern day cowboy if it weren't for one small detail. . .Baxter makes a living as a poet.

Since 1982, Baxter Black has been rhyming his way into the national spotlight, and now stands as the best selling cowboy poet in the world. He's written 12 books (including a rodeo novel), recorded over a dozen audio and video tapes, and achieved notoriety as a syndicated columnist and radio com mentator. From the Tonight Show and PBS to NPR and the NFR, Baxter's wacko verse has been seen and heard by millions. His works are prominently displayed in both big city libraries and small town feed stores.

Yet Black, who still doesn't own a television, fax machine or cellular phone, hasn't changed a thing about his sub ject matter or his delivery. He continues to focus on the day-to-day ups and downs of everyday people who live with livestock and work the land. Driven by a left-handed sense of humor that's been com pared to "Robin Williams in a cowboy hat", Black evokes laughter just by being there.

Baxter's philosophy is sim ple enough, in spite of all the computerized, digitized, high-tech innovations now avail able to mankind, there will always be a need for someone who can "think up stuff".

The businesses sponsoring the Baxter Black performance are Napa Auto Parts, Coast to Coast, Carstens Motors Inc., Modoc Insurance, Holiday Market, Ed Staub & Sons, Plumas Bank, Pioneer Auto Body, K & K Produce, Pizza & Pasta Place from Alturas, and the Surprise Valley Chamber of Commerce, Hempfield's Natural Goods of Surprise Valley and Arreche Enterprises from Cedarville.

Presale tickets are avail able at the Coast to Coast Store in Alturas, Page's Market and the Fair Office in Cedarville. $12 per ticket, 6 years and under are free. Re ceive free gate admission with presale ticket, Saturday, August 16 only. For more in formation call (916) 279-2315 or FAX (916) 279-2555. Visa and Mastercard accepted.

Long-needed repairs to city's long-ignored streets begin

Believe it or not, the repair project for Alturas City streets started this week and will run through most of the summer, with estimated completion in September.

Hutchins Paving and Engineering, Inc. Crews are low ering valves and will start the grinding processes on sched uled streets, followed by the actual paving.

A schedule of the repair project is included in this news paper, and if there are changes in those dates, the Record will try to advise residents early. The contractor has agreed to notify residents 10 days in advance of work.

The schedule shows the dates when the streets will be torn up and paved. Between the dates shown, residents can expect to have access to their homes or businesses impacted. There may be times that people will have to park on a cross street and walk to their home or business or park across the street from their homes or business.

According to Stacy Chase, Director of Public Works, said the contractor will be doing everything possible to keep the streets open and passable at all times, but there will be occa sions when the streets will be closed, especially during paving.

The contractor will be working from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m. with occasional work as late as 7 p.m. so access to and from work should not be affected.

If there is any significant change in the schedule, the city will notify the public and the contractor will also notify af fected residents.

"We are requesting residents assist us by removing vehi cles and trailers from the street during the scheduled con struction periods," said Chase. "The contractor will be noti fying all residents of the dates of construction prior to the start of work. After the first 10 days of construction, resi dents will receive 10 days notice prior to the start of work."

Individuals with special transportation needs should contact the city for assistance in working transportation needs out.

The street repairs are being done in accordance with a FEMA allocation to repair damage from storms in 1993 and 1995.

For more information, call the city at 233-2377.

County, hospital employees at impasse

Labor negotiations between Modoc County and the Modoc Medical Center employees union have broken down and impasse has been declared. A state mediator will hear the issues at the end of this month.

The County is not offering a wage in crease, while the union wants a cost of living raise.

County Administrative Services Officer Mike Maxwell, said the county simply can not afford to give the hospital employees a wage increase.

"The hospital operates on an enterprise fund, separate from other county funds," Maxwell said. "Last year the hospital showed a loss of $1,300,000 and is projecting a loss of $400,000 next year. The management and staff are working feverishly to bring the hos pital back to the break-even point and better, but it's not there yet."

Maxwell said the county has no argument with the union's stance that the hospital "is going to have to raise the income of their em ployees if they want to retain qualified people and provide quality medical care" but the money just isn't available. In the past six months, Maxwell said, the hospital has trimmed staff by 23 employees.

The county did come to terms with the Modoc County Employees and the Sheriff's Department employees, giving them a 6.5 percent increase and an additional one time $500. That $500 "bonus" said Maxwell, was given to those employees because their units showed good faith bargaining practices and the employees were patient and worked with the county to improve efficiency and cost of operation.

Funding for hospital employees is sepa rate from general fund employees, Maxwell explained. "If the hospital turns around and the financial picture brightens we would certainly do something for the employees," said Maxwell. "It just isn't possible at this time."

The hospital employees have been without a contract for two years, said Chris Darker, United Public Employees of California Labor Negotiator.

Record News summaries for July 31, 1997
Lightning blasts forest, few fires
MJUSD set to hire new principal
District says no to Ag teacher
Hospital holds auctio to raise funds
Top cowboy humorist at the Fair

Lightning blasts forest, but no big fires erupt

Thunderstorm activity over the past week, and projected to continue this weekend in Modoc, has kept the forest fire fighting crews busy and on alert. The alert status will re main this week as thunderstorms continue to slam the area.

According to the Modoc National Forest there are no large fires burning and most of the fires were kept to a minimum. There were 32 lightning-caused fires burning approxi mately 65 acres on the forest. Most of the fires started July 27, with 15 fires covering three acres. The largest fire on the forest was the Wilson Fire, located near the Oregon Border on the Doublehead Ranger District which covered about 60 acres.

The Lava beds National Monument reports two-light ning-caused fires for no acres.

Lighting activity varied in intensity, but basically cov ered the entire forest. Some precipitation aided fire suppres sion, but precipitation varied from a few hundredths to a one-half inch forestwide.

There are seven fires within the Big Sage Fire Management Unit and all are being monitored. The fires outside the Big Sage Management Unit have been contained or are out.

Assisting in fire suppression efforts were one helicopter, eight additional engines from cooperating agencies includ ing California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service and Fish and Wildlife Service. Two air tankers, one air attack and one lead plane were used in the Wilson fire.

MJUSD set to hire new principal

The Modoc Joint Unified School District has set a special meeting today at noon to hire a new principal for Modoc High School.

Following interviews of three candidates early this week, the Board intends to hire one of the three, according to Board President Bill Hall. Hall said the board was pleased with the applicants but could not divulge who the selected individual was before the board meeting.

Also on today's agenda is the appointment of an Independent Study Teacher, a Sixth Grade core teacher and a resignation and discussion on the Teamsters and Modoc teachers contract proposal responses.

Geothermal project starts to gain steam, comments arrive

The Four Mile Hill Geothermal Development Project near Medicine Lake and the Telephone Flat project are gaining some attention as comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Report begin to come in to the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management.

The project is getting some opposition from local Native American tribes as the Draft Environmental Impact Statement/Report has been released for public review and comment. A group out of Siskiyou County, Medicine Lake Citizens for a Quality Environment, is questioning the sanity of drilling in the area as well as disturbing the natural environment and the popular recreational area. Medicine Lake is one of the premier recreation and geologic areas in the area and is the site of California's largest volcanic area and attracts large numbers of people annually.

The area is a very sacred place for Native American tribes, including the Modoc, Pit River and Klamath tribes.

The Four-mile plant proposed by Calpine Corp., based in San Jose, would produce 49.9 megawatts of electricity us ing hot water from deep wells on Forest Service land. The Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service are accept ing comments on the project through September 16 and public hearings are scheduled in Dorris, Klamath Falls and Yreka.

The meeting in Dorris is August 6, at City Hall; in Klamath Falls at the Shilo Inn, August 6 and in Yreka, August 7 at the Miners Inn Convention Center.

The Four Mile Hill project would be located on the Klamath National Forest about three miles north-northeast of Medicine Lake. The project would mean disturbance of 388.5 acres of land, including 335.8 acres from transmis sion line right-of-way and access roads. Much of the trans mission line would be on Modoc National Forest lands. The power plant would occupy a 10-acre site while seven wells would cover about 18 acres. Some 25 acres would be disturbed by pipelines, roads and construction of a new substation.

Another project in the Medicine Lake area called the Telephone Flat project is proposed by CalEnergy in Omaha, Neb., and is in the beginning planning stages.

For the Four Mile Hill project, a 230-kilovolt transmis sion line would run south from the power plant to within a half-mile of Medicine Lake, then east into Modoc County, past the community of Tionesta, finally linking to the Bonneville Power Administration line along Highway 139.

The tallest structure of the plant itself would be about 94 feet, housing the turbines and generators. A cooling tower will be about 70-feet tall.

A decision on whether to allow construction of the plant could come later this year. Calpines states the plant will em ploy 19 people. The company would pay an estimated $1.3 million in property taxes and another $15 to $25 million in royalties to the federal government. One-half of those funds would be returned to the state of California and 40 percent would be distributed to the counties where the power plant and transmission lines are located.

Copies of the DEIS are available at the Modoc National Forest Supervisors' Offices in Yreka and Alturas and at the BLM Alturas Area Resource Office in Alturas.

Written comments should be sent to Randall Sharp, USFS/BLM, 800 W. 12th St., Alturas, Ca., 96101.

MMC Silent Auction offers fun with barbecue, music, bidding

The time has arrived for Modoc Medical Center's "Silent Auction" and Buffalo Barbecue, with proceeds to benefit the Modoc Medical Center Radi ology Depart ment for needed Radiology equipment.

Modoc Med employees are hoping for a good turnout and a big dinner crowd for the barbecued buffalo burger and buffalo steak dinner. Dinner will be served from 3:30 - 7:30 p.m. on the patio tables at the Veterans' Park, So Main Street, Alturas on Saturday, August 2.

"We want everyone to come have a good time and and enjoy the meal," offers Radiology Director Dottie Houghtby.

Many of the local busi nesses and citizens have of fered their support of this pro ject by making donations toward the barbecue and Silent Auction. Carol Hewitt has donated the buffalo and Mike Conrad will barbecue the steaks and burgers. Woody Laughnan, MMC Administrator, and his wife Chris will be there to help serve the food.

René Larranaga of the Brass Rail, is donating the restaurant's Sheepherder's bread and butter. Josephine Larranaga of the Brass Rail is donating the ice cream. Rick Malcolm of the Wagon Wheel is donating his homemade beans, Cheryl Nelson at the Auction yard is donating salad, Waundra Blizzeard of Act One, is do nating macaroni salad and Bill Jacques at Pepsi is do nating sodas. Richard and Nancy Yarbrough of Four Corners Market, are donat ing the paper plates. Alturas Elks Lodge 1756 is providing the tables. Bill Hall, Chevron, will be donating ice.

Nick Contaxis has agreed to donate his talents and will D.J. the music for the barbe cue and Silent Auction.

Cost for the barbecue is $8 per adult; $3.50 ages 12 and under and children under three are fre

Many of the items for the Silent Auction will be dis played. Each item or de scrip tion of an item offered will have a sign up sheet for any one who wants to make a bid.

Bidders just write down their name and what they want to offer as a price on an item, then keep checking the list, as the bidders fill in the sign up sheet and offer more. Bidders are welcome to sign the sheet any number of times with bids before bid ding closes.

"We should have all bids in by 7:30 p.m., so we can announce the high bidders for each item, before the close of the evening at 8 p.m.," of fers Houghtby.

Among the donations to ward the Silent Auction are a one hour flight around Al turas from Pronghorn Avia tion; an 18-inch satellite dish from Advanced Imag ing; one night at the Niles Hotel in the Honeymoon Suite; two nights and a show at the Nugget in Sparks; two nights at Circus Circus, Reno; Sunday Brunch for two at Lynne's Deli, Alturas; a case of Napa wine, a lap blanket from Mary Flournoy, a crocheted afghan from Martha Roberts, a handmade clock from Jim Russell, The Highlander video from Becky Steward, and a cooler with wheels from Payless, Klamath Falls.

Donations from Modoc Medical include four Mammographies valued at $132 each for the four top bid ders; a $20 meal ticket at MMC; a Physical exam that will include baseline EKG and Chem 24 panel; Preven tive Dental Screening visits for a family of four, one Di agnostic Sleep Study worth $2,000 and a 1974 ambulance (minimum bid $900); nu merous hand-crafted items made and donated by local artisans specifically for the Silent Auction.

The goal is to raise $140,000 toward the purchase of newer Radiological equipment for the commu nity hospital.

The drawing for the quilt, on display in the MMC lobby, will also be held during the barbecue. Purchase tickets from MMC's gift shop, at the barbecue or from the Radiol ogy Dept.

The tent-trailer, the prize in a second drawing, and currently on display in the MMC/Clinic parking lot, will go to a lucky winner, after all tickets have been sold.

Only 500 tickets are of fered at $20 each with $500 and $200 cash prizes also of fered as prizes.

For further information or to make a Silent Auction donation, please call Faith Wyatt or Dottie Houghtby at 233-5131, Ext. 216.

Baxter Black Show comes to Modoc County Fair

Modoc - The Last Frontier Fair will be featuring Cowboy Humorist Baxter Black, Au gust 16, starting at 7:30 p.m. at the Grandstands. Also, for the crowds entertainment will be up and coming recording artist and actress Charity Allen.

Baxter Black is a unique individual who can shoe a horse, string a barbed wire fence and bang out a Bob Wills classic on his flat-top guitar. He has more hair around his lip than on his head, and his roping skills could use some improvement.

These facts along would make the former livestock veterinarian a fairly typical modern day cowboy if it weren't for one small detail. . .Baxter makes a living as a poet.

Since 1982, Baxter Black has been rhyming his way into the national spotlight, and now stands as the best selling cowboy poet in the world. He's written 12 books (including a rodeo novel), recorded over a dozen audio and video tapes, and achieved notoriety as a syndicated columnist and radio com mentator. From the Tonight Show and PBS to NPR and the NFR, Baxter's wacko verse has been seen and heard by millions. His works are prominently displayed in both big city libraries and small town feed stores.

Yet Black, who still doesn't own a television, fax machine or cellular phone, hasn't changed a thing about his sub ject matter or his delivery. He continues to focus on the day-to-day ups and downs of everyday people who live with livestock and work the land. Driven by a left-handed sense of humor that's been com pared to "Robin Williams in a cowboy hat", Black evokes laughter just by being there.

Baxter's philosophy is sim ple enough, in spite of all the computerized, digitized, high-tech innovations now avail able to mankind, there will always be a need for someone who can "think up stuff".

The businesses sponsoring the Baxter Black performance are Napa Auto Parts, Coast to Coast, Carstens Motors Inc., Modoc Insurance, Holiday Market, Ed Staub & Sons, Plumas Bank, Pioneer Auto Body, K & K Produce, Pizza & Pasta Place from Alturas, and the Surprise Valley Chamber of Commerce, Hempfield's Natural Goods of Surprise Valley and Arreche Enterprises from Cedarville.

Presale tickets are avail able at the Coast to Coast Store in Alturas, Page's Market and the Fair Office in Cedarville. $12 per ticket, 6 years and under are free. Re ceive free gate admission with presale ticket, Saturday, August 16 only. For more in formation call (916) 279-2315 or FAX (916) 279-2555. Visa and Mastercard accepted.


Record News summaries for August 8, 1997

No takers for MHS principal's job
Local UPS driver honor national strike
Lion kills goat on rancher's deck
Modoc fair small but great fun
Tobacco companies target Modoc teens
Elk, chubs on Land Use meeting agenda

MHS principal search still yields blanks

The search for a Modoc High School Principal is still drawing blanks and the Modoc Joint Unified School District is no closer now than it was before hiring a "headhunter" to locate applicants for the position.

Last Friday, the MJUSD interviewed three applicants for the position and offered the job to two, who both declined to ac cept. According to MJUSD Board member Sean Curtis, the reason for the applicants refusing the job had largely to do with location. The three applicants were all recommended by the district's hired "headhunter".

With school starting August 25, the district finds itself without a replacement for former principal Bob Larkins, whose contract was not renewed this spring. He found em ployment quickly at Big Valley High School in Bieber and is on the job.

According to Curtis, the search is now on, with assistance from the headhunter, to find an interim principal to take over on a temporary basis. Curtis said it's likely the interim principal will come from a pool of individuals who are called upon in these types of situations.

He said the interim principal would definitely not be anyone local and the board intends to find that individual as soon as possible. He said he's heard rumors that the board will select a local person to fill in, but stressed that is not go ing to happen. Meanwhile, existing staff will be asked to take up the slack and insure things are ready to go once school starts.

The board was unable to come to terms with a candidate in their first round interviews at the beginning of summer and then hired the headhunter to bring in applicants for the sec ond round of interviews that occurred last week. Why the headhunter brought candidates who would not accept the job remains a mystery to the board.

Curtis maintains the board will be able to find a quality, and qualified person for the position, but admits the last round could put the district at some disadvantage in the search since most administrators would be in place and get ting ready for the school year.

Local UPS drivers join nationwide strike

Local United Parcel Service drivers joined the nation wide strike against UPS this week, asking for better pay, employment conditions and moving more part-time em ployees into full time positions.

The shutdown of delivery service has impacted the county, and the nation, and as of Wednesday morning, the strike continued. The strike began Sunday night after the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and UPS failed to reach agreement on a new labor contract.

The Teamsters said the strike was the result of the compa ny's refusal to end sub-contracting by non-union employees and to create thousands of new full-time jobs each year from existing part-time positions, which makeup about 60 percent of a 301,000 strong domestic work force.

UPS has called those issues a "smoke screen," saying the real issue is the Teamsters refusal to consider a company request to withdraw from a multi-employer union pension plan that encompasses other companies, mainly trucking firms.

Local UPS employees thanked the community for its show of support and stressed they were sorry for any inconve nience the strike was causing.

UPS Driver Ernie Givan said the strike was necessary and in response to UPS business practices. For instance, he said, 40 UPS drivers were laid off in Oregon recently. UPS stipulated that was because of a decrease in business. However, he said, UPS trailers were being hauled by sub-contractors. Additionally, he said, the company's use of long time part-time employees just wasn't fair. Those employees, many who have worked for over 10 years as part-time should be put on full time status, he said. The pay and benefits are better, he explained.

UPS driver Randy Christensen said he hoped the strike wouldn't materialize, but felt it was justified and the local drivers had little choice anyway, since their packages all come out of Redding UPS, which is on strike as well.

The local striking UPS drivers are not getting paid, but may be eligible to $55 per week if the strike goes longer than one week. One driver said they'd much rather be working, but felt the company's position on the contract wasn't fair.

The strike hasn't caused a huge problem for the local Post Office, said Officer-in-Charge, Judy Fenters.

"So far we're handling it fine," she said Wednesday. "The Post Office has put a limit of four parcels per customer per day. I'd say we've picked up a little, but we haven't seen large increases."

What happens if the strike continues, however, is anyone's guess.

Jerry Snavely, the local driver for Rapid Package said his loads have been much greater since the UPS strike. He had several packages for delivery to Surprise Valley, which he seldom gets, and a full pickup load.

Jim Rollins, of Frank's Carpet, the largest shipping center for UPS packages in Modoc said that part of the busi ness had ground to flat zero. They normally ship between 20 and 30 packages per day, said Rollins. They're not accept ing them at the moment, but will as soon as the strike ends.

A major problem for Rollins is the lack of deliveries to his flooring and furniture store. He has had to put some jobs on hold and is hoping the strike ends soon.

"It is having a major impact on our business and others, job wise and retail sales wise," said Rollins. "We hope it's resolved soon."

The news Wednesday from the East Coast was not real optimistic. While there was pressure being put on to restart stalled labor talks, no talks were scheduled. Negotiations may resume the latter part of this week, according to a news report by Cable News Network.

UPS is the world's largest parcel delivery company, con trolling about 80 percent of the nation's package shipping business and estimates that its daily volume of 12 million parcels represents six percent of the U.S. gross domestic product. It is, by far, the biggest parcel delivery service in Modoc.

Lion kills goat on ranch near Alturas

A mountain lion killed a goat on the back deck of a ranchhouse near Alturas July 28, but has not been found since.

Sandra Ray said the lion got one of her goats just af ter midnight the morning of the 28th. She said it was on her back deck with the goat in its mouth. Ray's husband, Lawrence, took three shots at the lion as it escaped. The Ray ranch is just northwest of Alturas along Rattlesnake Creek.

According to Department of Fish and Game Lieutenant Mike Wolter, a depredation per mit was issued to kill the lion, but it was not seen again. Animal Damage Control was called and came in and searched for the lion, said Wolter. The 10-day permit expired Wednesday.

Mrs. Ray said that more than 50 animals have been lost at the ranch over the past year, and while some have been from coyotes, she feels lions are the culprits for many of them. With most of the losses, she said there wasn't a carcass. For the DFG to get involved in a depredation permit for a lion, there has to be solid evidence a lion was in volved, said Wolter.

Had Lawrence hit and killed the lion when he shot at it, it would have been well within his rights, said Wolter.

Mrs. Ray was not happy with the results of the ac tions taken by agencies in the matter, but Wolter said he is tied by state law. Mrs. Ray said she wanted to make sure that her neigh bors know there is a lion, or lions, in the area who was bold enough to take a goat off her back deck.

1997 Modoc-The Last Frontier Fair; fun, food, entertainment

Modoc - The Last Frontier Fair, August 14-17, 1997 in Cedarville, Calif. is one of the smallest fairs in California, but it's big in fun and events of all kinds.

"The Commercial Build ing is going to be packed full, and we have a waiting list for it this year," says Jeanne Grove, Modoc Fair Manager.

The Midway of Fun will return and all the favorite con cessionaires, plus a few more will add to the fair's culinary selections. A wide variety of music, entertain ment, contests for best Apple Pie and Chili and Homerun Derby will be hap pening, along with a Saturday night Dance with Heartless from 10 p.m. - 1 a.m. , demonstra tions, displays and ven dors will appeal to fair-goers.

A new addition to the fair is the open air, Midway Tent Stage, located on the Midway roadway under the shade trees. This stage will also feature a variety of enter tainment throughout the af ternoons.

This year the Junior and Senior Horse Show will be start ing Thursday, August 14, Halter Classes, Junior Showman ship, Junior & Se nior Saddle Mount Classes, such as, Trail Horse, Hunter Hack, English Pleasure, En glish Equitation, and West ern Pleasure. The Thursday Junior Show will, also, in clude Gymkhana Classes. A Champion Special Award will be given for each age group in the Western Classes. Fri day's Horse Show will open with Cutting Classes, Open Cutting, Non Pro, and Two-Handed and Ju nior Reining.

As in the past the Saturday Rancher's Day will be high lighted by competitions among the area's best cowboys in pursuit of the coveted Tro phy Saddle crafted by Bill McDon ald of Canby. Events offered, during Rancher's Day are Working Cow Horse, Snaffle Bit, Ranch Horse, Penning and Open Team Branding and new this year Mixed's Team Branding.

Winners of each of the Cutting Classes and Rancher's Day Events will receive hand-crafted belt buckles made by Jim Dunn of Frontier Supplies Inc. from Auberry. Local ranches, the Jim Cockrell Ranch and the Bob Cockrell Ranch provide all the cattle for the Rancher's Day events.

Seventy percent of the entry fees will be jackpotted out, plus added state moneys. Prize money will be paid one place for every five entries. Also, available to out of town partici pants are stalls and RV spaces. A.J. McQuarrie will be available to answer any questions about the Horse Show events (916) 233-3946.

Thursday night, August 14, is the crowd pleasing Basque Barbecue hosted by the Sur prise Valley Chamber, serv ing at 5:30 p.m., $8 for adults and $5 for 12 & under, along with the Sheep Dog Trials, to be held in the Jeanne Steven son Memo rial Arena at 7:00 p.m.

PEE WEE Showmanship, spon sored by Modoc County Cat tlewomen, will start at 5:00 p.m. on the Livestock Lawn Children three through eight years will show their ponies, calves, lambs, pigs, goats, rabbits, chickens and ducks.

Park Stage entertainment is featured all day, everyday. The fair will be featuring Legendary Country Singer, My ron Reed with his easy listening country sound. En joy a va riety of songs by a new up and coming vocalist Char ity Allen and Manzanita with their unique musical style. Spe cial performances by "Bad Moon Rising" a tribute to Cree dence Clearwater and "Heartache" tribute to the Ea gles will return this year on Friday and Saturday. Also the original sound of Mood Swing, a popular group from Klamath Falls, will be per forming jazz and soft rock, along with songs from the 60's through the 90's.

Friday, August 15, will be gin with Kid's Day, free to all kids 12 years and under. Pay one price, $8 per person, for unlimited rides from 1 - 11 p.m. at the "Clean & Safe" Mid way of Fun Carnival.

Fun with clown and magi cian Roundhouse Ronny, en joy comedian, jug gler/unicyclist Chaz Mar quette and ventrilo quist Ken Karter. Contest, games and fun will be featured at the Park Stage.

Friday night, August 15, will feature Street Stock Rac ing at the Modoc Fair Speed way, races starting at 7 p.m. The annual Styx Men's Invi ta tional Softball Tournament will begin at 6 p.m. with eight teams registered.

Saturday, August 16, will be Senior Citizen's Day free to everyone 65 years and over. The Cedarville and Alturas Rotary Clubs will be sponsor ing the Senior Luncheon to be held in the Dance Hall. Horse shoe Pitching Tourna ment, demonstrations and enter tainment all day at Louieville and the Park Stage.

Starting at 4 p.m. the Sur prise Valley FFA Barbecue, will be held at the Park Stage Lawn area. Tickets for the barbe cue are $10 for adults and $7 for 12 years and under.

Saturday evening will be packed full of entertainment and just plain old fashion fun with Baxter Black, Cowboy Humorist, performing at the Grandstand at 7:30 p.m., also featuring singer Charity Allen. $12 presale tickets are on sale at Coast to Coast in Alturas, Page's Market and the Fair Office in Cedarville, receive free admission into the fair on Saturday with the purchase of a presale ticket. It will be $12 at the gate, Satur day night.

The evening will conclude with country dance featuring local band "Heartless" lo cated at the Dance Hall.

Sunday, August 17 is Pa rade Day on Cedarville's Main Street, followed by the annual Junior Rodeo, spon sored by Modoc County To bacco Control. Future profes sional cow boys and cowgirls will be competing in tough rodeo events. Pinz Rodeo Stock of Terrabonne, Ore. will provide the stock this year.

"Louieville", a collection of historic building moved from the surrounding area and restored by the Cedarville Rotary Club, will come to life - complete with blacksmith, wool spinners, Native Ameri can jewelry, and a Chili Cook-Off Contest and West ern music along with a Quilt display at the Louieville Church.

New and returning enter tainers will highlight the fair. "Entries look good," of fers Grove.

"We're not sold out yet, but get your tickets soon for Bax ter Black Show," the Fair Manager suggests (See ad for ticket sale locations).

Fair admission and spe cial days:

Thursday - Free - Kids six years and under free every day.

Friday - Kid's Day - 12 years and under free; adults, $3; senior citizens, $2. Car nival wristbands will be sold until 8 p.m. honored until 11 p.m.

Saturday - Senior Citizen's Day - 65 years and over free' adults, $3; kids 7-12 years, $2.

Sunday - Adults, $3; kids and senior citizens, $2.

Season passes - For three days of the Fair: adults, $7; kids 7-12 years and senior cit izens, $4.

Tobacco ads still targeting youth

While there may be a set tlement in the works with to bacco companies which would stem much of their advertis ing campaigns aimed at teenagers, there's still a ways to go.

According to Karen Kahusi, Coordinator of the Modoc County Tobacco Education Program, most Modoc retailers were coopera tive with a marketing survey done by the Modoc High School Leadership Class this year and the results were pre dictable.

"Our findings were alarm ing, but not sur prising," said Kahusi. "Despite intense pub lic outcry against the tobacco industry's youth-oriented marketing practices, it's evi dent that tobacco money still talks in Modoc County. For many retailers, the financial rewards the tobacco industry gives them to prominently display their ads and products in spe cific areas of their stores are too lucra tive to refuse."

The MHS Leadership class conducted their survey throughout Modoc, and did tell retailers what they were do ing as a part of Operation Storefront, a statewide cam paign to reduce youth exposure to tobacco market ing.

"We're particularly dis turbed by the num ber of tobacco ads and pro motions in stores near schools," Kahusi said. "This continues to be of concern in Modoc and statewide." According to Kahusi, Modoc fits in with the state in terms of tobacco advertising. In more than half the counties and cities surveyed across the state, retailers continue to place to bacco ads and promo tions close to candy and at the eye level of young children. Modoc county is consistent with this statewide trend, with 55 percent having tobacco ads and pro motions below three feet and 27 percent hav ing ads and pro motions near candy dis plays.

"It's no coincidence that more of our chil dren are start ing to smoke," said Judi Johnson, Modoc County Director of Health Services. "They continue to be bom barded with im ages of camels and cowboys as they shop for candy and snacks. This rein forces a prior study that showed that ado lescents are twice as likely to be influ enced to smoke by cigarette advertising and promotion as they are by other factors, in cluding peer pres sure."

Statewide, the survey showed that the total number of ads per store remained virtually unchanged since 1995: 35 counties and cities had the same number of ads or promo tions -- or more -- while only 10 showed a significant de crease.

"We're up against an in dustry that pays retailers monthly fees for prime placement of its products, ads and promotions," said Kahusi. "The Federal Trade Commission reports that in 1994, the tobacco industry spent $1.7 billion -- more than a third of its $4.83 billion an nual advertising ex pendi tures -- on these payments."

The 1996 California Adult tobacco survey showed that California's, smokers and non smokers alike, agree that action must be taken. An overwhelming 96 percent be lieve that preventing teens from smoking is very impor tant.

"Voluntary efforts have not been effec tive," said Kahusi. "We cannot afford to wait for -- or trust -- a possible federal settlement to solve this health crisis. We, at the Modoc Tobacco Education and Cessation Program, will con tinue to promote actions to protect our children from these deadly messages."

Elk, chubs on Land Use group agenda

The August 13 meeting of the Modoc County Land Use Committee has a variety of items open for discussion and action.

New business on the agenda includes comment on the Modoc National Forest Plan amendment for utility corridors. Specifically, those corridors under consid eration soon are the Sierra Pacific Power Line route off Devil's Garden and the pro posal of a geothermal plant and resulting power lines near Medicine Lake.

The committee will also be discussing a $10,000 grant application for the Modoc Elk Working Group and the potential listing of the Cowhead Lake Tui Chub as an endan gered species.

Under the old business portion of the agenda, the committee will be discussing the Draft Integrated Pest Management Plan for federal lands, ground water management, Modoc Refuge acquisitions and Medicine Lake Geothermal Project.

The Land Use Committee meetings are open to the public and the public is encouraged to attend. The meeting is held at the Farm Advisor's Conference Room, at the county's Fourth Street Complex, beginning at 1:30 p.m.

Record news summaries August 14, 1997

Alturas Mayor dies early Thursday morning
UPS strike impacting local businesses
Lyneta Ranches changes ownership
Lion killed on ranch near Alturas
Refuge Scenic Overlook gets going
Modoc Fair opens four-day run today

The forecast: The weather stays warm today with highs about 95. Partly cloudy skies return Friday and remain through Monday, with temperatures cooling into the lows 80s.

Mayor dies

Sad news for the City of Alturas came early Thursday morning after the Modoc Record went to press. Mayor John Hagerman, a strong leader for the community, died at Modoc Medical Center about 5 a.m. Thursday. There are few details available, and a date and time for services has not been set.

UPS strike cause of grief to most local busi nesses

With the Teamsters strike continuing against United Parcel Service, businesses and organizations are adjusting, but it has caused some hardships.

As of Wednesday the two sides in the strike were not at the bargaining table and an end to the national work stoppage has not been predicted. They were supposed to meet Thursday morning. The Teamsters have declared their intent to hold out until what they con sider a fair contract is offered. UPS, on the other hand, is asking that their em ploy ees be allowed to vote on their proposed contract. Both sides are seeking public sup port through media campaigns.

Locally, some stores in Alturas had planned back to school sales for this week and were all set, except their mer chandise has not arrived and apparently is stuck in a UPS warehouse.

The bigger stores including Coast to Coast, Four Seasons Supply, Modoc Motor Parts and Alturas Motor Parts get much of their stock on their trucks, but each of those stores said they are having some trouble getting special orders or shipping items out. But, all said they are using different shippers and man aging to keep things working.

The clothing stores in town get a lot of their goods nor mally on UPS, but have had to make adjustments. In some cases shipments are just sitting in warehouses. Bill Hamby, of the Toggery, said one of his shipments got caught in tran sit, but he was lucky that most of his orders for fall came be fore the strike.

Family Footwear had planned a special back-to-school sale, but some of their stock has been caught in transit as well. It's putting a real damper on their back-to-school busi ness. But they did get some of their shoes in before the strike happened and that should help.

Jay's Clothing Store said they haven't had a real bad im pact to date, but most of their items were in before the strike happened. Stella Hight said she does depend on UPS for ship ments of goods.

Most businesses contacted said they were impacted by the strike, but are coping as best they can. There may be some delays in get ting goods and the freight costs may be a little higher. In some cases, shipping out of the U.S. Post Office is actually cheaper, but it may take a little longer.

Meanwhile, other shippers are still trying to take care of as many packages as they can. Federal Express, Rapid Package and the U.S. Post Office all have seen increases in volume.

Judy Fenters, Officer-in-Charge at the U.S. Post Office in Alturas said package de liveries have shown an increase this week, up around 25 percent of normal.

"We're not having any trouble handling the volume," said Fenters. "So far, every thing's getting out on time, but there has been an in crease in volume this week."

The Teamsters said the strike is the result of the compa ny's refusal to end sub-contract ing by non-union employees and to create thousands of new full-time jobs each year from existing part-time positions, which makeup about 60 percent of a 301,000 strong domestic work force.

UPS has called those issues a "smoke screen," saying the real issue is the Teamsters refusal to consider a company re quest to withdraw from a multi-employer union pension plan that encompasses other companies, mainly trucking firms.

Lyneta Ranches changes ownership

Escrow closed on the sale of Lyneta Ranches August 1 to a partnership called Alturas Ranches.

According to spokesman W.J. Nicholson, the operation of the huge ranch, formerly owned by Hancock Insurance, will not change initially. The same local staff will remain and the operation will continue stressing alfalfa and wild rice production.

The partnership who bought the ranch includes Barry Swenson, a contractor from San Jose; The Schnoor Family of Chowchilla; and the Hull Family Farms, W.J. Nicholson of Carmel.

According to Nicholson, the manager of operations for Alturas Ranches will be Brad Schnoor, whose family has farmed for three generations in the San Joaquin Valley. Schnoor will not be re-locating to Modoc County, but will be spending several days weekly here.

Nicholson said the partnership plans to continue its as sociation with local businesses and likes to do business lo cally.

The emphasis this season will remain with wild rice and alfalfa, said Nicholson. He said as time goes on the ranch may experiment with additional crops, or even go to produc ing some seed crops.

Lion killed on ranch

A 60-pound male mountain lion was killed Monday evening on Alturas Ranches, formerly Lyneta Ranches, south of Alturas.

According to Department of Fish and Game Lieutenant Mike Wolter, an irrigator saw the lion that evening and shot it as it crouched in a culvert. Walter said the killing, in his investigation, was a public safety issue and legal.

The DFG will be analyzing the carcass to check for rabies or other diseases.

There have been several lion sightings this summer in and around Alturas and several sightings, and some killed, on area ranches.

Refuge Scenic area has next month completion date

Work started late last month on the Modoc Wildlife Scenic Overlook just south of Alturas, and the completion date is set for around mid-September.

The overlook will have room for 14 vehicles, 12 of them auto spaces and two Recreation Vehicle spaces. The area will have a rock masonry wall and six interpretive panels when completed.

The area faces west and according to Refuge Manager Dave Johnson, there will be plenty of wildlife activity in the area. The fields are generally inhabited by the refuge deer herd and dozens of antelope. In addition, some wetlands have been developed and geese and other waterfowl will be plentiful. Also, said Johnson, Sandhill Cranes use the area a a nesting site.

Oscar Hernandez, a former Modoc High School student, is the Caltrans resident engineer for the project. He is sta tioned out of Redding.

John Pedersen, Modoc County Road Commission and Executive Director of the Local Transportation Commission, LTC, said the new overlook will be quite an asset to the area.

In 1993, he said, the LTC proposed the Wildlife Scenic Overlook as a Transportation Enhancement Activities Program, or TEA. The project will cost about $218,000. Eugene Poch, Director Caltrans District Two, took the project sponsor role proving the required 20 percent match in funds, about $40,000. The remaining 80 percent funding is federal highway dollars.

Pedersen said there was plenty of support for the project but offered special praise to Johnson and the refuge staff and Fish and Wildlife Service. The project was supported by the following agencies: The California Association of Resource Conservation and Development Councils; Modoc Economic Development Corporation; Duck Unlimited; U.S. Department of the Interior; U.S. Forest Service; Modoc Joint Unified School District; Modoc County Supervisors; City of Alturas; TEACH; Modoc County Office of Education; U.S. Department of Agriculture; Alturas Chamber of Commerce; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; and the project was en dorsed by Congressman Wally Herger.

The LTC members proposing the project in 1993 were: Chairman Chip Greene, and members Jim Porter, Mike Maxwell, Ron McIntyre, Larry Pickett and Nancy Huffman.

TEA funds are required to be used for transportation-re lated projects that enhance the quality-of-life around trans portation facilities. Transportation enhancement activities, said Pedersen, are a means of more creatively and sensi tively integrating transportation facilities into their sur rounding communities; at the same time, they may protect the environment and provide a more aesthetic, pleasant and improved interface between the transportation system for the communities and people adjacent to transportation facili ties.

Pedersen hopes the Modoc Wildlife Scenic Overlook pro ject will draw people to the county and the city. About 860,000 people travel through the area each year, he said, and it's es timated that the Modoc refuge will see an increase of about 50,000 visitors a year from the from the construction of the overlook.

Modoc Fair opens today, plenty of fun for all ages

Bring an appetite for food, entertainment, music and fun to the Modoc Fair which officially opens at 5:00 p.m. today, Aug. 14, with free admission until 9:00 p.m. The fair will continue Friday through Sunday, Aug. 17, at the Cedarville-based fairgrounds.

Cedarville businesses have stepped into the spirit of fair time and decorated downtown for the annual occa sion this year.

Plenty of roving entertainers from Ken Karter, the Ven triloquist, to Chaz Marquette, the unicyclist, juggler and Roundhouse Ronny, the clown, will give the fair a fun start tonight at 5:00 p.m. Miss Modoc Stacy Cook, 16, of Cedarville and Princesses Laurie Nelson, 17, of Adin and Nicole Robi nett, 17, of Cedarville will be representing their fair in their home territory.

More entertainment, with a new open air Midway Tent Stage, will add to the atmosphere during the Modoc Dis trict Fair where the theme, "Modoc - Land of Sun, Sage and Open Range" will be featured in exhibit hall displays and carry through the fair's four-day run.

The Midway of Fun will return and all the favorite con cessionaires, plus a few more will add to the fair's culinary selections.

Thursday evening will be highlighted with the Pee Wee Showmanship for young children at 5:00 p.m. on the Live stock Lawn as children bring their pets and farm/ranch an imals to show. Modoc County Cattle Women are sponsoring the event.

At 5:30 p.m. Manzanita, an easy listening musical trio from Redding, will perform on the Park Stage with music from Beatles to Simon and Garfunkle, hits from the Mon keys and more. Everyone's welcome for the Basque Bar be cue sponsored by the Greater Surprise Valley Chamber of Commerce with serving at 5:30 p.m. until all the food is gone. Tickets are $8, adults; $5, kids.

Returning singer/guitarist Myron Reed's "Country Leg ends" will entertain beginning at 6:30 p.m. The Mark Wal genbach Memorial Sheep Dog Trials open in the Jeanne Steven son Memo rial Arena, after the horse show, around 7:00 p.m. Exhibit buildings close at 9 p.m.

This year the Junior and Senior Horse Show will be start ing Thursday morning. Halter Classes, Junior Showman ship, Junior & Se nior Saddle Mount Classes, such as, Trail Horse, Hunter Hack, English Pleasure, En glish Equitation, and West ern Pleasure. The Thurs day Junior Show will, also in clude Gymkhana classes. A Champion Special Award will be given for each age group in the Western Classes. Fri day's Horse Show will open with Cutting Classes, Open Cutting, Non Pro, and Two-Handed and Ju nior Reining.

Spe cial performances by "Bad Moon Rising" a tribute to Cree dence Clearwater and "Heartache" tribute to the Ea gles will return this year on Friday and Saturday. Also the orig inal sound of Mood Swing, a popular group from Klamath Falls, will be per forming jazz and soft rock, along with songs from the 60's through the 90's.

A wide variety of music, entertain ment, contests for best Apple Pie and Chili and Homerun Derby will be hap pening, along with a Saturday night Dance with Heart less from 10 p.m. - 1 a.m. , demonstra tions, displays and ven dors will appeal to fair-goers.

Friday, August 15, will be gin with Kid's Day, free to all kids 12 years and under. Pay one price, $8 per person, for unlimited rides from 1 - 11 p.m. at the "Clean & Safe" Mid way of Fun Carnival.

Fun with clown and magi cian Roundhouse Ronny, en joy comedian, jug gler/unicyclist Chaz Mar quette and ventrilo quist Ken Karter. Contest, games and fun will be featured at the Park Stage.

Friday night, August 15, will feature Street Stock Rac ing at the Modoc Fair Speed way, races starting at 7 p.m. The annual Styx Men's Invi ta tional Softball Tourna ment will begin at 6 p.m. with eight teams registered.

Saturday, August 16, will be Senior Citizen's Day free to everyone 65 years and over. The Cedarville and Al turas Rotary Clubs will be sponsor ing the Senior Lun cheon to be held in the Dance Hall. Horse shoe Pitching Tourna ment, demonstrations and enter tainment all day at Louieville and the Park Stage.

Starting at 4 p.m. the Sur prise Valley FFA Barbecue, will be held at the Park Stage Lawn area. Tickets for the barbe cue are $10 for adults and $7 for 12 years and under. As in the past, the Saturday Rancher's Day will be high lighted by competitions among the area's best cowboys in pursuit of the coveted Tro phy Saddle crafted by Bill Mc Don ald of Canby. Events offered, during Rancher's Day are Working Cow Horse, Snaffle Bit, Ranch Horse, Pen ning and Open Team Branding and new this year - Mixed Team Branding. The Calcutta begins at 3:00 p.m.

Winners of each of the Cutting Classes and Rancher's Day Events will receive hand-crafted belt buckles. Local ranches, the Jim Cockrell Ranch and the Bob Cockrell Ranch provide all the cattle for the Rancher's Day events.

Seventy percent of the entry fees will be jackpotted out, plus added state monies. Prize money will be paid one place for every five entries.

Saturday evening will be packed full of entertainment and just plain old fashion fun with Baxter Black, Cowboy Humorist, performing at the Grandstand at 7:30 p.m., also featuring singer Charity Allen. $12 presale tickets are on sale at Coast to Coast in Alturas, Page's Market and the Fair Office in Cedarville, receive free admission into the fair on Saturday with the purchase of a presale ticket. It will be $12 at the gate, Satur day night.

The evening will conclude with country dance featur ing local band "Heartless" lo cated at the Dance Hall from 10 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.

Sunday, August 17 is Pa rade Day on Cedarville's Main Street, with Grand Marshals Cliff and Lois Bailey of Al turas leading the way at 11:00 a.m. sponsored by the Surprise Valley Rotary Club.

The annual Junior Rodeo, spon sored by Modoc County To bacco Control will start Sunday after the parade. Fu ture profes sional cow boys and cowgirls will be competing in tough rodeo events. Pinz Rodeo Stock of Terrabonne, Ore. will provide the stock this year.

"Louieville", a collection of historic buildings moved from the surrounding area and restored by the Cedarville Rotary Club, will come to life - complete with blacksmith Tom Dudkowski of Janesville; wool spinners, Native Ameri can jewelry, a Chili Cook-Off Contest at 1:00 p.m. Sunday, West ern music and a Quilt display organized by Eva Massie of Ft. Bidwell will be in the Louieville Church. The Tombstone Decorating contest will also be located at Louieville.

Concessions and displays

In and around the commercial building, fairgoers will find Hempfield's Natural Goods of Surprise Valley's area with clothing plus hemp-java coffee and more. Juanita's Fine Candies returns with T'n'T's baked potatoes and top pings, Indian Fried Bread and Indian Tacos; a new Mexi can food menu brought by Granger's Wagon; Mick ey's German and Polish sausage sandwiches and chicken sandwiches, Capitol Concessions with corndogs, fries, cheese on a stick, snow cones, Cedarville Fire De partment's beer and wine booth.

For those who arrive early, when the fair opens Friday and Saturday mornings at 8 a.m., breakfast will be served at the Elks Lodge "Hitching Post" concession stand near the grandstand. Burgers and more will also be available throughout the day and evening.

Who's coming to the fair?

See the displays in and around the commercial build ing with greenhouses and spas plus home improvement items from Hot Springs Spas of Klamath Falls. Modoc Steel will have welding demonstrations and Carsten's Motors will bring new vehicles and trailers to show. Two toy vendors and a gift item booth have been added; Modoc County Cat tleWomen will be giving Beef demonstrations in their chuck wagon near the Park Stage area. Pioneer Auto Body will bring their trailers and Arreche Farm Equipment will have displays. Modoc High's Cheerlead ers will be selling candied apples; Surprise Valley Boy Scout Troop will have a "camp display;" Melvena Hall will have her delicate and elaborate handpainted egg art for sale; Environmental Al ternatives will have informa tion regarding Foster care; Claude Singleton's Upstream Trading Co. will bring jew elry and gift items; Alturas Chamber of Commerce; Cali fornia Highway Patrol, Modoc Pro-Life, Modoc County Mu seum;Rex Baumgart ner's Earthe Art Imaging will provide ideas and gifts; Kirby and Rainbow Vacuum representa tives will attend along with Modoc County Public Works "oil recycling" information. Arts and crafts by Surprise Val ley's Paula Wilson; Jean Lake of New Pine Creek and Julie Webb of Surprise Valley will show their wares; U.S. Cellu lar and California Health Professionals, M bar P Horse manship Program for the Challenged, Citizens Communi cations, PrimeStar, John Bagwell's American Raingutters dis play and Dan Farnam of Grants Pass will bring his unique flat iron art.

Fair admission and special days:

Thursday - Free - Kids six years and under free every day.

Friday - Kid's Day - 12 years and under free; adults, $3; senior citizens, $2. Car nival wristbands will be sold until 8 p.m. honored until 11 p.m.

Saturday - Senior Citizen's Day - 65 years and over free' adults, $3; kids 7-12 years, $2.

Sunday - Adults, $3; kids and senior citizens, $2.

Season passes - For three days of the Fair: adults, $7; kids 7-12 years and senior cit izens $4.

Record News summaries August 21, '97
Alturas Mayor will be missed
Schools open in Modoc County
Fair completes a 4-day affair
County -- to be or not to be trout?
Drug bust nets Alturas couple

Weather: The forecast calls for partly cloudy skies through Monday, with highs in the upper 80s and lows in the upper 40s. The probability of rain is not real exciting.

Alturas Mayor's death shocks city, officials

The sudden death of Alturas Mayor John Hagerman last Thursday morning shocked the City of Alturas.

Hagerman, who was a strong leader for the community, died at Modoc Medical Center apparently of heart failure (an aneurysm) after he was admitted last Wednesday night suf fering from apparent pneumonia. Hagerman was 71 years of age and had been Mayor of the City since April, 1996. He has been on the City Council since being elected in May, 1995.

Hagerman is an outspoken champion of the City and worked hard to improve the living conditions for its resi dents.

"He was a very hard worker and had goals for the city's future," said City Clerk Cary Baker. "The city is going to miss his leadership, and hopefully, the projects he was work ing on will be continued. He gave this city a lot of his time and energy."

On Wednesday morning the remaining members of the City Council voted to have Dick Steyer serve as mayor and retained Kerry Merwin as vice-mayor.

The council will appoint a replacement for Hagerman at a future meeting.

Schools open doors Monday for all kids

Hundreds of kids in the Modoc and Surprise Valley school districts will start us ing alarm clocks again next Monday. School starts on Au gust 25.

At the beginning of this week, Modoc High School had an enrollment of 340. All of the schools said they expected to pick up a few additional students by the end of this week. Dean of Students Jim McLaughlin said the 340 number was a little higher than last year when the school started the year at about 320. He credited the higher num ber to new move-ins.

McLaughlin also said that sophomores, juniors and se niors should be getting their schedules in the mail this week. Freshmen can pick up their schedules at the Fresh man Orientation that will be held tonight at Griswold Gym from 7-9 pm. The orientation is intended for both students and parents.

MHS will begin the year with Don Demsher at the helm as Interim-Principal. Demsher is from Redding where he has previous experi ence as a teacher, principal and superintendent.

Modoc Middle School re ported an enrollment of 286 while Alturas Elementary School is planning to have at least 429 kids showing up next week.

In Surprise Valley, the high school will start with 72 students while the elementary school will have an enroll ment of 149.

Those numbers are only slightly down from last year, but very low when compared with five years ago. Surprise Valley Superintendent Henry Bietz said that in 1992-93, the District had over 90 students at the high school and 220 at the elementary school.

Bietz said the SV Elemen tary loses about $4,500 in funding per student when the enrollment goes down. SV El ementary currently has one class and teacher for each grade. The Surprise Valley School Board has looked at proposals for combining grades but for the time being has decided to "try to tough it out," according to Bietz.

At the high school, the lower enrollment has caused the elimination of one teaching position. Bietz said the school would not be further affected unless the enrollment dropped below 65 students.

Although the numbers have gone down over the five-year span, Bietz feels they have been tabling off for the pre sent. He speculated that part of the reason for the lower numbers was the closure of the Hog Ranch Mine located about 60 miles southeast of Cedarville in Nevada. Sev eral families ended up mov ing because of the closure. Bietz also said that it may turn out that enrollments are cyclical, particularly in a community the size of Sur prise Valley. The schools may just be between cycles right now and it could be that many younger families will have more kids in the system in the next few years.

Fair's four-day run

The weather cooperated with a bit of wind, but as far as Modoc Fair Manager Jeanne Grove, was con cerned she said the 1997 run of the fair had more enter tainment than ever and anyone who missed the Baxter Black show, really missed a good show.

"The grandstands hold 1200 and we probably had about 800 people for the Bax ter Black show Saturday night and the car races Fri day night did really well and had no injuries nor mishaps. I was really pleased with the turnout at the fair, but won't have any figures in the computer for a week or so yet," said Grove who was busy getting the fair results lined up.

The four-day fair, which ran August 14-17, found 13 competing for the new Mom's Apple Pie making contest with "top baker" pre miums and ribbons awarded to Judy K. Cockrell, first place; Katy Grove, sec ond place and Norene Mc Mullen, third place.

Kids Day with the special POP "pay one price" for un limited rides on Friday, brought out a good crowd that seemed to stay into the evening, noted Grove.

"We seemed to be reach ing more city dwellers who came to enjoy the clean and safe atmosphere of our fair which is also one of the most beautiful fairgrounds in California, and I'll stand by that statement," described Grove. Several long-dis tance travelers appeared for the Black show.

"As far as I can tell, and I haven't heard differently, the concessionaires did about the same as the last few years. The carnival will return for the next two years and seemed pleased."

This year's first "Ugly Truck" contest judged seven entries. On the leaner side, the tombstone decorating contest dropped to two entries and the Chili Cook-off co-sponsors Sandra Stevenson of Surprise Valley and My ron and Linda Reed of Visalia, were disappointed, but not disenchanted with the lack of entries for the chili cookoff contest at Louieville. They will try it again one more year and hope to drum up more response. The cash prizes and certificates they offered were top-notch.

"We had plenty of peo ple to eat the chili, but we only had two entries and three pots of chili, so we sold the bread by the slice when we ran out of chili," shared Stevenson. "We'll give the contest one more try, next year."

Overall, Fair Manager Grove said she was "really pleased with the turnout" at the fair and commented that she personally felt it was her "best fair yet."

County dismissal of committee member odd at best

Is it better to be honest or nice? That question might arise when a friend asks if you like his or her new outfit. Or it might come up when dismissing a member of the Fish, Game and Recreation Commission.

The question of honest vs. nice seemed to be in front of the Modoc County Board of Su pervisors during their August 19 meeting. Jon King, a re cently dismissed member of the Fish, Game and Recre ation Commission, asked to be reinstated.

King, and his attorney Barry Kinman, were under the impression that King had been dismissed from Fish and Game because the Board felt he had a conflict of inter est in serving on the Commis sion. George Sorenson, a member of the Commission, had requested an opinion from County Counsel Hugh Comisky about a possible con flict of interest because of King being President of the Modoc Chapter of Trout Un limited and also having his own J. J. King Fly business. Comisky stated in an opinion letter that, as he understood King's other interests, they "would disqualify him from voting on any fishing related matter" as a member of the Commission.

Comisky also requested a second opinion from the Cali fornia Fair Political Prac tices Commission. That or ganization stated, in a non-committal opinion, "Mr. King may not participate in a governmental decision which will have a reasonably fore seeable and material finan cial effect."

King and Kinman came to the Board meeting prepared to argue that King did not have a conflict of interest.

Board Chair Ben Zandstra pointed out that, "Commission members serve at the pleasure of the Board," and are ter minable at will for any rea son.

"Any discussion of the point would be moot," Zand stra said, because it didn't matter what the reason was for King's dismissal.

Joe Colt said that conflict of interest wasn't the only rea son for King being dis missed.

"Jon, I've had many com plaints in the past on atti tude," Colt said to King. "That was probably a half-de ciding factor.

"Sometimes it helps to build some bridges and not just tear them down."

King responded that if Colt had just told him, "It's time for a change," he would have gladly stepped down. Instead, King felt that an "accusation" had been made that he was us ing his position on Fish and Game to further his own in terests.

Board member Nancy Huffman asked Kinman, "Would it be better to say, 'We don't like the way he acts on it (the Commission)?'" This was really an easier way to let Jon off and not comment on his personality."

Kinman responded that if he and King had known that the issue was actually King's personality, they would have brought many people to the Board meeting who would praise King's personality and community involvement.

Huffman said that still wouldn't have mattered be cause King was terminable at will.

Kinman then said that the result of the Board's action is that "public confidence suf fer...We all expect govern ment to function rationally and on stated reasons." He later added, "It's evident that it wasn't handled in the best way."

In further discussion Colt pointed out that the Board has many commissions with many people serving on them. He said that Board members must be free to make changes when needed.

"Each of us need a way to remove somebody for what ever reason," Colt said.

Zandstra concluded that the important issue was, regard less of the reason, King was terminable at-will and the Board did not feel it would be productive to discuss the mat ter further.

Other matters before the Board included:

Budget Hearing Date: The Board will hold it's Budget hearing on September 16.

Modoc Medical Center: The Medical Center has a loss of $37,980 in June and is $159,088 under budget for the year. The Board also ap proved a Bond Fund request for $16,000 which will be used to make physical improve ments to a building that will house the new Alzheimer's Program, which is scheduled to open on October 1.

New General Assistance Regulations: The Board got an overview of the new rules from Social Services Director Richard Belarde. The board is scheduled to adopt the regu lations on September 16. Pub lic comment can be made on the regulations before that meeting.

Belarde pointed out to the Board that if someone applies for General Assistance (GA) and does not have proper doc umentation to be in America, the County will report them to the Immigration and Natu ralization Service. Colt pointed out that the person could still, under the regula tions, apply for and receive GA. Belarde said, "I don't see is as an issue...It hasn't hap pened during my eight years here."

Under the new regulations, the County can now count Sup plemental Security Income (SSI) as income if the person applying for GI is living in a family where someone is re ceiving SSI.

An adult is eligible to re ceive up to $295.50 per month from GA and cannot receive GA for more than three months during any 12 month period. The new regulations also provide that if a person has received three months of GA in another county, they can't come get an additional three months in Modoc County.

Utility Corridor: At the recommendation of the Land Use Committee, the Board sent comments to Diane Hender son-Bramlette, Forest Super visor for Modoc National For est on the "Proposed Amend ment to the Modoc National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan Direction for the Use and Designation of Utility Corridors."

The current standard used by the Forest Service states that any time a new utility corridor is needed, it should be confined to the areas where existing corridors already are, if possible. Construction of new corridors may be un dertaken if, after considera tion of a number of factors, it is shown that it would be better to do that than use existing corridors.

Henderson-Bramlette pro posed adding "alternative impacts on associated com munities and private lands" as one of the factors to con sider before deciding to make a new utility corridor. At pre sent the Forest Service does not have to consider what will happen to communities or pri vate lands when determining where a utility corridor should go. This was an issue recently with regard to a 2.5 mile Sierra Pacific utility corridor and whether or not it should be placed on private land or go through the Na tional Forest.

The Forest Service noted that the current plan, "Does not provide for meaningful consideration of the impacts on Modoc County and the City of Alturas. This is of particu lar concern in that public lands comprise in excess of 85 percent of Modoc County."

In the County's comment letter to Henderson-Bram lette, the Board pointed out that, despite the proposed amendment, Forest Service Standards and Guidelines still state, "Do not approve special use applications if use can reasonable be made of private land." The Board maintains that this will "continue to force projects onto private land despite your proposed change."

The Board recommended that the current guideline be replaced with a guideline stat ing, "Public land will always be the site of first choice for projects requiring a special use permit."

The Board closed the letter by stating that Forest Service "language should be written so that a projects location on private property is a last re sort."

Alturas couple arrested on drug charges

An Alturas couple, Robert and Mindy Budmark, was arrested by the Modoc County Drug Task Force following a search of their Woodduck Lane home August 19.

According to Sergeant Mike Crutcher of the task force, the California Highway Patrol and Modoc Sheriff's Office assisted in the investigation.

According to Crutcher, the CHP drug detec tion dog discovered a substantial amount of controlled substances, including metham phetamine, cocaine and marijuana. Agents also seized a large amount of U.S. currency, alleging possession of controlled substance for sales. Also seized were several weapons discovered in the residence.

The duo was booked into the Modoc County Jail on charges including: possession of controlled substances for sale, conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and child en dangerment. The couple's young son was taken into protection custody by Modoc County Child Protective Services.

Record news summaries for August 28, 1997
Construction active in Alturas area
El Nino to have an impact on Modoc?
County says EIR needed on gravel pit
Termo boy dies in auto accident

The forecast: Look for mostly cloudy with a chance of showers today with highs in the 70s and 80s. It remains partly cloudy with showers possible through Monday. Lows mid 30s and 40s.

Construction booming in Alturas with big projects

While there may not be a lot of home building going on in and around Alturas, there is plenty of construction activity underway.

The new Post Office Building on Main Street being constructed by Ocean West, of Tempe Arizona is moving along quickly. Several local contractors are also working on the project which is scheduled for completion in November.

The 5,800 square foot building replaces the Post Office across the street on Main and will be more accessible with more parking and better landscaping.

Last week the Record printed a drawing of the front of the building. As it turns out, the City of Alturas presented the Record with the wrong drawing. It was the first version, which was changed later. Planner Scott Kessler, who was instrumental in changing some designs on the building, brought us the proper drawing this week. The approved structure fits more into the downtown looks and is very attractive. That new structure is pictured this week. And we're assured this is what the building will look like.

Construction on city streets is moving along very well and Hutchins Engineering out of Redding is receiving compliments from the city and residents. Public Works Director Stacy Chase said Hutchins is the best contractor the City's worked with in years. Hutchins is going out of its way to make additional repairs and is advising residents in plenty of time before working on their streets.

Contractor Robert Hutchins also said he was pleased with the consideration given his crews by local drivers and residents. Hutchins said it was a pleasure to do business in Alturas and enjoys the people and the attitude.

While not everyone is happy with the street project, most people in town are just glad some of the streets are being repaired. Fourth Street has a brand new asphalt deck and several other streets, including East Street, are now smooth and finished. The project is ongoing.

Alturas City Clerk Cary Baker said there are a few complaints about the project, but not about the contractor. Most of the complaints, said Baker, deal with those streets not being fixed, or where the repairs end on some streets with potholes within reach. Early on, the City had advised residents that the repair project might look a little strange in some areas. But, Baker said, it was the FEMA officials who decided which streets and what parts of those streets would get repairs. FEMA decided which holes were storm damaged and which were maintenance problems.

The street project is FEMA funded and linked to storm damage in 1993. The city was awarded about a million in FEMA funds for the project and the city has appealed another FEMA decision which, if granted, may add more money for more overlay in the future.

The Alturas Rotary Club is starting construction on the New Youth Park ball fields in earnest this week. Crews from Alturas Ranches (formerly Lyneta) are using their laser leveling equipment to get the ground ready for the sprinkler system installation.

The laser leveler started Monday and has made quick work of the area. Dorris said the ground work is coming along very well.

Rotary is now seeking bids for the design and installation of the sprinkler system for the project. During this phase of the construction, Rotary hopes to get the sprinkler system installed and operating this fall. The grass planting will wait until next spring.

The Youth Park fields are being funded through money raised from the Alturas Rotary Great Pit River Duck Race, held during Fandango Days. So far, there have been two races which have raised over $60,000 for the field construction. The Duck Race is on again for next year and the fields will cost more than $100,000 to complete.

Included in the new portion of the park are a new senior league field, two Little League fields, a T-ball field, two soccer fields, a playground area, picnic area and concession stand.

According to Dorris, Hutchins is also going to provide the work to pave a parking lot along West C Street. The Youth Park is between West C and Nagle Street and Fourth and Eighth Streets.

Work is also continuing well on the Wildlife Refuge Scenic Overlook just south of Alturas on Highway 395. Caltrans engineer Oscar Cervantes, formerly of Alturas, is overseeing that project which will provide travelers a nice area to stop and view the refuge.

El Nino on its way, but what about Modoc?

National weather forecast ers are warning southern California residents to pre pare for a tough winter as the ef fects of a major El Nino are predicted to hit as early as September.

But what happens to Northern California and Modoc County? That's a re ally good question.

El Nino is a weather sys tem that occurs every few years and warms the ocean currents, creating different weather patterns. This year, weather experts are predicting a winter that could create the worst havoc since the winter of 1982-83, or might even be worse.

The good news for Modoc County is most of the impacts should be felt in the southern part of the state and the na tion. Sometimes, it's pointed out, the northwest could expe rience drought-like condi tions.

For instance, in that winter of 1982-83, Modoc's winter was pretty normal, getting aver age precipitation in October, 1.84 inches; 1.55 inches in November and 1.44 inches in December. It mellowed out in January, 1983 as .61 inches fell and in February 1.96 inches was recorded. March was

wet with 2.86 inches. Actually, the wet weather hit Modoc hard in late 1983 (presumably as the warm waters moved north) when 3.03 inches fell in November and 4.17 inches fell in December, well more than av erage and well more than the previous 20 years. In 1983, Alturas recorded 19.07 inches of moisture, the most since 1952 when 20.80 inches fell. Modoc's annual average is right about 12 inches.

Weather service forecast ers are saying that El Nino is already impacting the south ern part of the state with warmer than normal tem peratures and with storms ex pected in September and pre dicted to continue through spring.

In 1982-83, El Nino spawned storms that devas tated south ern California, creating the worst floods of the century. While the southern part of the country should be wetter than normal this win ter, some experts are saying the northwest winter could be very mild.

But people can take their pick, some forecasters are say ing to be prepared for a hard winter with plenty of wet weather.

A lot of Modoc'ers are in stalling new oil stoves or stack ing up large piles of firewood, which is usually a good sign that knowledgeable Modoc'ers are expecting a tough winter, El Nino or not. Check the coyote's tail -- bushy, it will be a hard win ter; thin, it will be mild.

County denies Yuba appeal on Cedar Pass pit

Modoc County Supervisors, following an orderly two-hour meeting Wednesday morning voted to deny an appeal of Yuba Trucking concerning their proposed gravel pit on Cedar Pass.

The board essentially upheld the Modoc County Planning Commission's decision that a full Environmental Impact Report was required on the project.

Indications are that Yuba Trucking will move forward with the EIR. The Board stressed that their vote was not in favor or against the project, but felt an EIR was necessary to adequately address issues. Supervisors Ben Zandstra, Nancy Huffman and Ron McIntyre vote to deny the appeal. Supervisor Joe Colt did not attend, while Pat Cantrall ab stained, both due to possible conflict of interest.

Yuba Trucking is seeking a use permit for the gravel pit, on the Betty Brown ranch on Cedar Pass.

That pit would be used as a rock quarry, where rock will be mined, crushed and dry screened. There would also be a portable hot plant on site to produce asphalt concrete mix for road construction. The pit itself is about six miles east of the Cedar Pass Y in tersection, just off Highway 299.

Neighbors have been orga nized in ob jecting to the pit, with reasons be ing envi ron mental, noise pollution, water pollu tion, traffic problems, wildlife concerns, real es tate values, and visual concerns.

The pit would be on a parcel of about 15 acres, owned by the Brown Ranch on the north side of State Route 299. An es ti mated volume of 414,000 cu bic yards of rock is planned for removal over a 20-year life span of the pit. According to the planning permit docu ments, a total of between 150,000 and 200,000 cubic yards could be removed in any given year.

According to Yuba Trucking, normal hours of operation would be 5.5 days per week, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturdays 6 a.m. to 12 noon. Down months would be December, January, February, except in cases of emergency.

A full EIR will probably take about six months to com plete, meaning the pit could not opera te for this year's paving and road work sea son.

Cedar Pass residents and property owners were well or ganized in an attempt to stop the pit or force the EIR. Disagreement among expert testimony was a key in the planning commission decision.

According to California Environmental Quality Act CEQA, guidelines, the "disagreement among experts over the significance of an ef fect on the environment can trigger an EIR in marginal cases when it is not clear whether there is substantial evidence that a project may have a significant effect on the environment."

CEQA guidelines also stress that the public contro versy must be based upon fact over the environmental ef fects of the project. "By itself, mere controversy about a pro ject is not enough; there must be substantial evidence of a potential significant effect," the guidelines state.

Termo boy killed in car accident

A 15-year-old boy from Termo boy died from injuries sustained in a car accident August 20, 11:30 p.m.

According to the California Highway Patrol, David W. Hardman, 15, was driving a 1993 Chevy Beretta eastbound on Juniper Ridge Road at Jones Road. While rounding the curve at Jones Road, Hardman applied his brakes and made an unsafe turning movement. The vehicle slid out of control off the south edge of the road and rolled over. Hardman, who was not wear ing a seatbelt, was ejected from the vehicle which came to rest upside down on top of him, causing fatal injuries.

Monty Wheeler, 37, Alturas, sustained moderate injuries in a two vehicle crash August 20, 5:20 p.m. on a Forest Service Road south of County Road 118.

According to the CHP, Wheeler was north bound in a 1987 Mazda pickup at about 15 to 20 m.p.h. and Erin G. Forrest, 77, Alturas was southbound in a 1994 Chevy pickup on the same road. Both vehicles met head-on in a slight curve in the road and collided. Forrest had minor injuries and both men were taken to Modoc Medical Center in Alturas.

There were no injuries to several young people in s sin gle-car accident August 23, 3:35 p.m. on County Road 56 at Dorris Reservoir.

The CHP reports that Michelle Harvey was driving a 1985 Ford westbound on CR 56 at about 50-55 m.p.h. and came around a curve where a rabbit was in her path. She ap plied her brakes and caused the car to swerve to its left. She ran off the road and struck a raised embankment causing minor dam age.

Harvey, and passengers in her car, Mindy Spear, 16, Tina Clark, 16, Sarah McNamara, 13 and Chesley Misen Himer, 15, all of Alturas, were unhurt.

Jesus Efrain Flores, 32, Tulelake, sus tained minor injuries in a single vehicle ac cident, August 23, 10:15 p.m. at County Road 112 and 104 east of Tulelake.

The CHP reports that Flores was south bound on CR 112 approaching a terminat ing T-intersection with CR 104 at a high rate of speed. Flores failed to slow down and make a turn and instead slid through the intersection and launched his vehicle air borne into an ir rigation ditch. During the subsequent in vestgation, it was determined by officers that Flores was intoxicated and he was ar rested alleging driving under the influence. He was cited and released.


Record News Summaries for Sept.. 4, 1997 edition

Welfare reform gets closer in county
MJUSD looks for new principal
Lighting blasts southern part of Modoc
Quake hits Modoc near Alturas
Child molester found guilty by jury
Supervisors irked by more state programs
Tulelake Butte valley fair opens today

The forecast: Look for a slight chance of afternoon thundershowers today with highs in the lower 80s. Clearer skies are expected through Saturday and a big question mark covers Sunday. Highs should stay in the low 80s with lows in the 40s and lower 50s.

Welfare reform nearing final implementation

With four months left to submit a weuntyModoc's Welfare Reform Committee is confident their plan will be in and workable.

Richard Belarde, Modoc Social Services Director, and Smith Pineo, Modoc Probation Officer/GAIN, have chaired the committee and are pleased with its progress and its direc tion.

The committee was set up by the Board of Supervisors and has been working since May. Supervisors Tuesday ex pressed support of the progress and stressed they want to see welfare reform implemented in earnest in Modoc County.

Actually the county doesn't have much choice since the plan has to be submitted to the state in four months. Belarde said Modoc is ahead of the curve on the plan and he feels the work put into it by the committee has been excellent.

As of January 1, 1998, all new applicants for welfare will have to enroll under the new welfare reform plan. Existing welfare recipients will be phased into the plan and all wel fare recipients must be enrolled by January 1, 1999.

The big part of the new regulations limits an adult to five years of welfare and work requirements and the clock starts ticking as of January 1, 1998 under both the federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families program and the state California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKS) program.

"Make no mistake about it, things are changing and that's what the people want," said Belarde. "We re taking a posi tive approach to this program and the bottom line is we expect to see a reduction of the number of people on AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children) over the next five years. I don't see us saving a lot of money in the first few years, but the savings will come if the program is successful."

Pineo said one of the main aims of the program is to re move the obstacles of employment for those people and "that costs money."

One of the keys to making the welfare reform program work in Modoc and everywhere else in the country is the creation of jobs. And in Modoc, said, Belarde, creativity will be a major element in job creation.

Kate Crosby, of GAIN, said there are some new parts of the welfare reform regulations that will help. For instance, work experience programs and on the job training programs were restricted to public employment or non-profit organiza tions. Under the new regulations, those programs can be im plemented in private business.

One of the areas causing some concern and being ad dressed deals with the possible displacement of members of the regular work force in favor of welfare program employ ees whose salaries could be wholly or partially subsidized. That's something the committee is stressing to avoid in its plan.

"I'm sure that some our welfare clients are concerned about implementation of the welfare reform program," said Belarde. "But we're trying vigorously to encourage them to look at this as an opportunity to get off the system and back into the work force. We're going to be working to give them the tools and a reason to gain independence after five years. Our program will strive to remove the obstacles from their being employable. The programs are working in Wisconsin and Minnesota and we see no reason they can't work in Modoc County and the State of California."

Crosby said she has confidence the programs will work, but stressed the entire community has to buy in to welfare re form. "The people have asked for it and now they have it," said Crosby. "I see people working hard at this, but it's only going to be successful if the community buys in. The em ployers are going to be a big part of this reform. It can't just be a few agencies involved."

Pineo stressed that community involvement is crucial to the overall success of welfare reform and the overall well be ing of the children and adults involved in the program.

"We're going to be taking steps to avoid any negative re sults of the program," said Pineo. "Our efforts are also going to be aimed at preventing some possible ramifications such as homelessness, hunger or child or spousal abuse. We are approaching this, as a committee, in a positive light and as an opportunity to help families get on their feet."

According to Belarde, the budget for AFDC amounts to about $2.5 million annually in Modoc, with another $90,000 per month in food stamps issued. Additionally, about $10 million in MediCal and other health related costs are spent in Modoc. Of that approximately $13.5 million, about $400,000 is actually county general fund money.

While no one can actually predict what's going to happen in Modoc once the welfare reform program is implemented, Belarde expects to see some changes in the near term. He cites the local General Assistance program which ran for years without time limits. Once the county instituted time limits, the budget dropped from $200,000 annually to about $56,000.

"I expect we will see some movement and perhaps some relocation early," said Belarde. "We'll know more once the program is in place and people are aware of its ramifica tions."

One area that will see an increase is child care providers. Under the new program, subsidized child care is part of the deal. Belarde figures there will be a need for about 300 more child care slots in the county as those parents have to go to work. There is a plan to have some current welfare recipi ents move into the child care employment arena.

Crosby points out that Child Care in California is under strict regulation and those providers would still have to meet the state's guidelines. Under the welfare reform proposal the children of adults on welfare will be taken care of and will not lose their medical coverage or food.

A real difference in the new program, said Crosby is that if an adult on welfare is sanctioned (benefits cut off) the ben efits to the children would continue. However, instead of the adult getting the grant in some cases they would be given vouchers for rent, utilities etc., making sure the children were taken care of and that the money was not spent on other things.

The committee shares a major concern with a lot of people in Modoc County about a lack of available jobs. Getting peo ple off of welfare and into the workforce will require new job creation and in rural areas, the economy has not been strong.

For all of the economic problems, Modoc's GAIN program can boast of some real success in placing people from the welfare rolls into the work place. Over the past year, said Crosby, GAIN has assisted in moving 96 people into jobs in this county.

MJUSD interviews for principal

Hoping that three's a charm, the Modoc Joint Unified School District will interview candidates for Modoc High School Principal Monday.

According to the District, five candidates will be inter viewed by both a Citizens' Committee and the Board of Trustees.

This session marks the third time applicants have come to Alturas to interview for the position. The first time, none of the applicants was hired and the second time around, the candidates refused to take the position.

Currently, an interim Principal, Don Demsher, from Redding, is handling the duties at MHS.

Lightning blasts hit southern Modoc area

While lightning blasted the south west portion of Modoc County, few fires actually erupted from the Tuesday night storms.

According to the U.S. Forest Service in Alturas, there were five small fires ignited by lightning. Two of those were in the Big Sage Fire Management Unit northwest of Alturas and are allowed to burn themselves out. A fire was reported in the Adin area and one fire was re ported at Soup Spring and another near Parsnip Creek.

Smoke jumpers from Redding dropped into the Adin fire and the fires at Soup and Parsnip, extin guishing them quickly. Those fires were kept very small.

Lighting activity was heaviest west of the Warners and a map show ing lightning strikes did not indicate strikes in the Warners. The major part of the storm hit south of the Modoc County line in Lassen County.

Forecasters were expecting the lighting storms to pop up sporadically over the next few days and Forest Service firewatchers will be busy.

Quake hits near Alturas

An earthquake measured at 3.8 on the Richter Scale hit an area in the hills 10 miles northeast of Alturas last Friday, but its effects were not felt, or reported, locally.

According to Associated Press, the seismographic labora tory at the University of California at Berkeley said the quake occurred at 8:48 a.m. and there were no reports of damage.

Bill Smith, a spokesman for the National Earthquake Information Center in Golden Colorado, said they didn't get any calls on it, but the quake did set off a couple of their in struments.

Child mo lester faces long sentence

By Geoff Griffin

Special to the Record

A Modoc County resident may soon have a new ad dress for the rest of his life -- behind bars. James Dale Smith was convicted in Modoc Superior Court on August 28 on felony counts of continuous sexual abuse of a child under age 14 and committing a lewd and las civious act with a child un der age 14.

After deliberating for less than 90 min utes, the jury re turned with guilty verdicts against Smith on both counts last Thursday. He will be sentenced on November 5.

That sentence could end up being for 50 years or even longer according to District Attorney Hugh Comisky. Smith had a prior conviction for com mitting a lewd and lasciv i ous act with a child under 14 in 1988 in San Joaquin County. Comisky said that felony conviction plus the two felonies here in Modoc mean that Smith has three strikes against him un der California law and could therefore get a sentence of 50 years.

However, Smith was also convicted of rob bery in 1980 in Texas. Comisky will try to argue that the el ements pre sent in that crime also meet the re quirements for robbery in Cali fornia. Therefore, Smith would have a double third strike against him. Under that circumstance he could spend the rest of his life in prison because he would not be eli gible for pa role until he was well over 100 years old.

The case rested on the tes timony of an 11 year-old girl who claimed Smith had inter course with her very weekend for over a year and a five year-old girl who claimed Smith committed a sexual act with her.

The State also presented expert testimony by Dr. Jerry Britsch and Robin Flagor of the Child Abuse Response Eval uation Ser vice (C.A.R.E.S.) in Kla math Falls.

The Modoc County Sher if f's Office recorded two phone calls in which they had the 11 year-old girl tell Smith she was preg nant. Those tapes were played for the jury.

An important moment in the case came when Judge John Baker ruled that a de fense expert wit ness called Smith's at tor neys, Ira Kauffman and Wendy Dier, would not be al lowed to testify to the jury. Comisky called Bak er's ruling "coura geous."

The defense had wanted to call Dr. Ed Coleman of Berke ley. According to Comisky, Coleman has testi fied in a large number of child abuse cases since 1984. The role he usually takes is to criticize the way investigators handled the case. Comisky ar gued that Coleman was not qualified as an ex pert witness be cause he had not examined either of the girls in this case, because Cole man has never conducted an ex am ination on a child abuse victim and be cause Cole man has never done fol low-up studies on the cases he has testified in.

Baker is only the second California judge to ever ex clude Coleman, and Comisky said he had little doubt that Smith would ap peal the deci sion. How ever, the previous judge who excluded Coleman was upheld on appeal.

After delivering their ver dict, a group of jurors said they were just glad the case was over and that they were anxious to get back to their gardens. They said they were able to reach their verdicts so quickly because Smith had "no de fense." One juror said she had ex pected that the trial would last two more days for the presentation of defense ev idence.

In the closing statement, defense attorney Kauffman raised several areas where he thought the jury could reach reasonable doubt. For exam ple, Kauffman noted that even though the 11 year-old girl claimed a fully-mature Smith had intercourse with her over 100 times, her physical ex am ination did not show any trauma in the genital area. Kauffman also noted that Smith did not make any in crimi nating state ments on the tapes obtained by the Sher iff's of fice, that the mother of the five-year-old could not remem ber Smith and the girl being alone together on the day the abuse was alleged to have oc curred, and that a sib ling of the 11 year-old who slept just a few feet from where the abuse regu larly oc curred was not called to tes tify. Finally, Kauffman said that the 11 year-old had been inter viewed by many dif fer ent peo ple who had pressured her and she may have told them what she thought they wanted to hear.

Comisky praised the job that the two child witnesses did in presenting their tes ti mony to the court. Help ing children to testify is just one of many unique challenges presented in a child sex abuse case.

"I've tried over 13 mur der trials to a jury and nu merous other serious cases and this type of case is much, much more diffi cult," Comisky said after the trial was over.

Another difference is the amount of emo tion these cases can generate.

"You don't have to con vey the emotion to the jury the way you do in other cases," Comisky said. "Paradoxi cally, as an at tor ney you get less emo tional and let the evi dence speak for itself. You have to key it down."

Comisky said he has seven or eight other child sex abuse cases that may come to trial in the future. He said he thinks there are more of these types of cases now because they are be ing better reported. He noted that T.E.A.C.H. is doing work in this area, that there are mandated reporting laws and that the eviden tiary rules have been changed to give better pro tec tion to child wit nesses.

New state program irks pair of local Su pervisors

By Geoff Griffin

Special to the Record

Sometimes one reaches the point where enough is enough. Modoc County Supervi sors Joe Colt and Ron McIntyre reached that point at the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday. Faced with having Modoc gov ernment expand to adopt yet another State pro gram, Colt and McIntyre just said, "No."

The State has offered to give Modoc $66,350 out of Proposition 99 tobacco money to start a Perinatal Outreach and Education program de signed to encourage expectant mothers not to smoke. Having the program would require the county to hire additional per sonnel and create office space for them.

Colt said he thought the pro gram sounded like a waste of public money and noted that Social Services and Public Health are by far the two most rapidly expanding areas of Modoc County government. He also noted that there tends to be a great deal of overlap with programs like this and he predicted that the program would become "self-perpetuat ing."

McIntyre asked Public Health Director Judi Johnson, "What do we get?" Johnson said she hoped the program would make contact with peo ple "we haven't seen before." McIntyre said he still ques tioned whether the program would actually cause expec tant mothers to stop smoking.

After considering how County Govern ment would have to expand to absorb the pro gram, McIntyre wondered aloud, "What if we don't do it?"

Johnson said she under stood Colt and McIntyre's reservations.

"You have to know that I question this ev ery way from Sunday," she said of the pro gram.

In the same vein, Johnson also noted that there may soon be a federal mandate requir ing every county in the nation to provide a health insurance program for children.

When the vote was called for, the program was approved by a vote of 3-2. Colt and McIntyre voted no, but Patri cia Cantrall, Nancy Huff man and Ben Zandstra voted yes.

Huffman said she was vot ing for the pro gram because she felt that a pre-natal pro gram was one of the places where the County could make a difference. She also added that healthy pregnancies could help to take care of many potentially expensive problems, like low birth weight babies, on the front end.

In other matters before the Board on Tues day:

Northern Cal-Neva Re source Conserva tion and De velopment Program - Pro gram Director Mark Steffek introduced himself to the Board and told them about two Cal-Neva projects. One is a tourism project where dis play panels will be put in 30 kiosks at rest stops along the five freeway and Highway 395. The displays will encourage people to try north-east Cali fornia for a vacation and gives them an 800 number to call for more in formation.

Cal-Neva is also running a Juniper Mar keting and Product Assessment project to see if some sort of an industry can be developed around the juniper tree.

Library Anniversary - On October 25, 1997, the Modoc County Library will celebrate 50 years in its building on West Third Street.

Seniors - The Board ap proved "A Proposal for En hancing Nutrition Education and De creasing Depression Among Seniors (Ages 60+) in Modoc County." The Board approved $4,527.00 of County funds and the State will pro vide $1,729.25 in matching funds. There will be 12 pre sentations on nutrition educa tion and four presentations on depression re duction aware ness.

Tax Cuts - County Auditor Judi Stevens in formed the Board that because certain bonds had been paid off, the special assessment in some areas of the County will be re duced back to one percent. In the past the special assess ment had been higher than once percent to pay off the bonds. Some areas will still have additional rates of .0013 percent and .0019 percent.

Davis Creek Church - The Davis Creek Church sits on County property and needs to be painted. Volunteers are willing to donate the paint and even do the painting. However, the building is two stories tall and raises lia bil ity issues for the County should someone fall and be injured while doing the paint ing. The Board decided to put the project up for bid to private contractors. Once the Board can review the potential costs of the project they will deter mine whether to fund it.

Budget Hearing - The Board will hold its annual budget hearing on September 16.

Tulelake-Butte Valley Fair opens today for weekend run, concerts

It's fair time in Tulelake . . . . Tulelake-Butte Valley Fair opens today, Sept. 4 through Sunday, Sept. 7 at the fairgrounds in Tulelake.

Original Creedence Clearwater Revival mem bers, now known as Cosmo's Factory, will entertain Fri day night, while Black hawk, with country western music, will be appearing at Saturday's concert, both con certs at 8 p.m.

Parade entrants will be showing off their "Blue Jeans and Country Dreams" Saturday during the annual fair parade.

The parade begins at noon and will head down Tule lake's Main Street to the fairgrounds. Participants will line up at 10:30 a.m. on Modoc Street under the water tower. Prejudging will be gin at 11 a.m.

Roving entertainers, cowboy poetry, magicians, clowns and more will enter tain all ages with free gate admission, a midway of carnival rides, gymkhana and evening performances.

Exhibits open Thursday, Sept. 4 from noon to 10 p.m.; Midway from 3 p.m. - 10 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 5, gates open at 8:30 a.m. and exhibits from 10 a.m. - 11 p.m.; Midway carnival open from 1 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Saturday, exhibits 10 a.m. - 11 p.m.; Midway, noon to 11 p.m.; Sunday, gates open at 8 a.m.; Exhibits, 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. and Midway from noon to 11 p.m.

A pay one price bracelet is available for children for the Midway for $12 for Thurs day and Sunday use only. Check at the fair office for the special deal. The fair draws people from southern Oregon, Siskiyou and Modoc Counties.

Concert ticket prices will be $25 and $20 each. Perfor mances at 8 p.m. both Friday and Saturday. Seating ar rangements will be similar to last year.

Creedence Clearwater Revival members including drummer Doug "Cosmo" Clifford and bassist Stu Cook are joined by lead guitarist Elliot Easton, formerly of The Cars; John Tristao whose powerful gritty voice adds special richness to hits such as Suzie Q, Proud Mary, Fortunate Son, Who'll Stop the Rain, and Steve Gunner on keyboards and acoustic guitar.

Record News Summaries for Sept. 11, 1997 issue
Modoc Grand Jury asks DA to resign
Forest Service has severe budget crisis
City approves Alturas Disposal sale
Modoc Balloon Fest is this weekend
Comment period extended on Medicine Lake

The forecast: Mostly sunny skies today with some afternoon clouds. Highs to the 80s. There's a slight chance of showers Friday through Sunday. Expect lows to be in the 30s and 40s.

Grand Jury asks DA to resign immedi ately

The Modoc County Grand Jury has re quested Modoc District Attorney Hugh Comisky resign his office, effective imme diately.

The request is in recommendation form in the just released Grand Jury Report, and comes following an investigation into the District Attorney's office and actions.

Comisky was unavailable, but will be able to respond to the recommendations of the Grand Jury next week.

The request that Comisky resign comes after the Grand Jury's investigation center ing around his arrest for driving under the influence and being in possession of firearms while intoxicated in Reno March 17.

The Grand Jury also investigated two other complaints, but did not find any crimi nal wrongdoing in those matters.

The Grand Jury report finds that Comisky was arrested for the crimes, was in posses sion of an official county vehicle, putting the county liability at risk and entered a plea of no contest to the charges in Reno. It also called into question some assertions of Comisky.

"The District Attorney stated that Modoc County does not currently have a county or dinance or charter regulating the use of county vehicles or driving vehicles after consuming alcoholic beverages," the report states and goes on. . . "While section 2.60.020 of the County Code does not expressly address the matter of operating a county vehicle while under the influence of alcohol it does state, in part, that 'All county vehicles shall be oper ated in compliance with all applicable laws.' The District Attorney was not in compliance with this regulation when he was arrested by the Reno Police Officer. Driving in Reno at 2:00 a.m. while intoxicated was clearly not official county business."

The Grand Jury also points out that there were inconsistencies in the testimony the District Attorney gave to the investigator from the Office of the Attorney General and information the investigator obtained in his follow up investigation.

The gun was a concern of the Grand Jury: "One of the guns the District Attorney had in his possession at the time of his arrest in Reno was a Colt 45 caliber pistol. The pistol had been ordered destroyed by a previous judge. It was issued to the District Attorney for his personal use on a permanent basis with the requirement that he pay $250 for the weapon. The money was not paid and trans fer of ownership of the pistol was not done."

In addition, the Grand Jury found that Comisky has a record of "at least" one prior arrest (1988) for driving under the influence. The law did not require him to disclose that information at the time he was elected to of fice.

The Grand Jury recommends that the county adopt a policy that disclosure of prior convictions be required for any one running for public office.

In addition, it finds that law enforcement officers and officials, with court direction, develop procedures for the disposition of weapons seized as the result of arrests or in vestigations and that those procedures be posi tive and not left to the discretion of the law en forcement officials.

Concerning the issue of driving a county vehicle while intoxicated, the Grand Jury recommends that the county adopt a policy that no county vehicle will be operated by any county employee or elected official if that per son has had as much as one alcoholic bever age or drugs, including prescription, that can alter a person's driving ability.

In addition, the Jury recommends that a new travel policy be developed that ensures that people plan their travel to arrive at their destination at a reasonable hour, authoriza tion be received by all employees traveling on overnight business that includes place of stay, room rates and a confirmation number for reservations made. Mileage should also be indicated as well as estimated times of de parture and arrival. The vehicle should be used only for official county business after ar riving at overnight stays.

"In view of the facts of this situation, it is with sincere regret that we, the Grand Jury, ask that Mr. Comisky resign as District Attorney for Modoc County, effective imme diately," the report states.

The Grand Jury report also recommends that law enforcement at both the county and city levels make a sincere effort to enforce the smoking laws of the state.

Major budget cutbacks loom at Forest Service

The Modoc National Forest is looking at some large bud get cuts, and lay-offs of employees are imminent, according to Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette.

This week she said the budget cuts were largely in the timber area and will have a rippling affect across the forest and on the local community.

A solemn Henderson-Bramlette said the actual numbers of employees affected and how they will be affected will be decided this week and next week there will be firm numbers to release.

On Wednesday, she did warn that the impacts would be severe, and she was less than pleased that the Modoc Forest sustained such a big hit in the budget process.

As it looks, the projected timber harvest was dropped from an annual 45 million board feet to just 10 million board feet. That not only will impact federal employees and their posi tions, it also will cut back severely on federal monies to roads and schools.

County roads and schools split 25 percent of timber re ceipts evenly and those receipts have been a major part of lo cal funding for years. Over the past few years, the funding levels were kept artificially high because the forest was in cluded as spotted owl impact area. But that period of grace is ending.

Alturas Disposal sale gets city, county okay

The sale of Alturas Disposal, owned by Dennis and Kelli Tate, received formal approval from the Alturas City Council Tuesday night. The sale to United Waste Systems, a nationwide company, has also received approval from the county.

The local government agencies hold franchise agree ments with Alturas Disposal and those agreements were what were addressed. United Waste Systems will abide by the current franchises and keep the Alturas Disposal name and local employees.

According to Tate, United Waste Systems owns 19 ser vices in the northstate (and many others throughout the na tion) and is headquartered for this part of the world in Corning. They have just purchased the Klamath Falls dis posal service and have other services in Chico, Corning, Susanville, Quincy, Anderson, Paradise and others.

There will be no change in service or rates when United Waste Systems takes over, which Tate expects to happen in about a week. The Tates have operated Alturas Disposal for the past 10 years.

The Council Tuesday night discussed filling the unex pired term of the late Mayor John Hagerman, who passed away unexpectedly last month. The council has three appli cants for the position, Roy Moore, Joe Coffin and John Kerr, but could not come to terms on an individual Tuesday. They will take up the issue again on Monday during a special meeting at 9 a.m. Also on that agenda will be discussion of the Arrowhead Golf Course management contract.

Public Works Director Stacy Chase told the council that Hutchins Engineering was nearing completion of all the paving projects in the city and felt the contractor had done an excellent job. Chase said Hutchins did more than he was re quired to do and the contract went smoothly. Chase said the crews will return next week to finish up four or five areas they still have to pave. They are also paving the parking area at the Youth Park as an added bonus to the city. That will be done at materials costs only.

Chase said he's heard rumors that the way the street pro ject was designed was the fault of the city and engineer.

"That's absolutely incorrect," he told the council Tuesday. "The project was designed the way it was because FEMA refused all attempts by the city to get a project with the right design cross section approved," said Chase. "We fought with FEMA for 18 months trying to get them to accept a change that would have permitted us to get rid of the substan dard base and install class two base to a depth that would have met Caltrans design guidelines or at least six inches of base and two inches of asphalt. All of these requests were de nied."

Overall, the council expressed satisfaction for the street paving project and praised the contractor and city crews for their efforts to do as much as they could with the available money.

The council did request from Chase that traffic lines be a high priority, especially on Fourth Street. Chase will look into the matter and hopes to get those lines painted this fall.

Chief of Police Larry Pickett also brought up the problem of trucks parking in residential areas and felt the city needs to address the issue, especially with the new streets. He said studies show one truck can cause as much damage to streets as 9,400 cars.

Chase also reported the city is going to install two more stop signs at the Fourth Street and Warner intersection, making it a four-way stop. The area has high concentra tions of children during the summer because of the pool and during the school year. Chase said there are some blind spots and slowing vehicles down at the intersection was a safety measure.

The council also agreed to transfer $2,000 from the Community Projects Fund into the John J. Hagerman Memorial Pool Fund. Covering the swimming pool was an important project of Hagerman's.

The council also agreed to seek a part-time employee to serve as the city's Animal Control Officer. Chase said he had a couple of people interested and would be trying to get the program started again.

Hot Air balloons take to blue skies

Need a lift or just cu rious about how hot air bal loons prepare for launch? The big and beautifully-patterned and colored hot air balloons will launch at 6:30 a.m. both Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 13 and 14 from Alturas Elementary School fields, Eighth Street.

Plan to attend the early morning lift off as a rider or an observer.

The fun starts Friday night, Sept. 12, when bal loonists arrive in Alturas to register and mingle with the sponsors and the public dur ing a reception at 5:00 p.m. hosted at the Alturas Chamber of Commerce of fice, 522 So. Main St., Alturas.

The Alturas Chamber of Commerce, with help from local sponsors, will bring hot air balloon pilots and their special balloons to Alturas for a Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 13 and 14 "Alturas Balloonfest."

Balloonists will be sell ing their hot air balloon rides to the public for $100 each or $90, if the ride ticket is pur chased in advance. Call the Chamber of Commerce at (916) 233-4434 for ride tick ets.

The majority of the bal loons and their owners will hail from the Bay Area, where Excelsior Balloons has helped organize the event, notes Carol Sharp, a Chamber director, Modoc National Forest employee and a sponsor along with her family, for the Balloonfest.

The special and "very large Smokey Bear" hot air balloon, which belongs to the U.S. Forest Service, will float across Alturas skies to cheer chil dren and adults, alike.

Hot Air Balloon Pilots traveling to Alturas for the Balloonfest include: Jane English from Mt. Shasta; Gloria Navarratte, Antioch; Brian Smith, Rohnert Park; Brent Stockwell,Oakland; Smokey's pilot, Bill Chapel of Albuquerque, N.M.; Elise Osner, Modesto; Jane Jennings, San Ramon; Bob Pina, Byron; Mike Kijack, Windsor; Gary Michalek, Lafayette; David Robinson, Half Moon Bay; Ed Steele, Mt. Shasta; and Dave Metcalf, Bishop.

Saturday morning, Sept. 13, 6:30 a.m. at the Alturas Elementary School, bal loons will be launched and many hands will be needed to help "crew" for the launchings, rolling out the balloons and rigging and inflating them.

Volunteers from the pub lic are welcome to help out one or both days. Bring a warm jacket or sweatshirt to help or if planning to take a ride.

There is always a need for chase cars to follow the bal loons to locate their landings and pick up pas sengers. Drivers interested in volun tarily participat ing may contact the Chamber office.

Saturday night at 6:00 p.m., stop by the unique Alturas Elks Lodge, where the Elks will serve barbe cued Tri-tip steaks and more for $8 per person in the Elks Lodge, So. Main St., Alturas. Come enjoy the classic cars on display at the Lodge, compliments of the Modoc Classic Cruisers.

Sunday morning, just af ter dawn, about 6:30 a.m. the balloonists will be offer ing rides again from the Alturas Elementary School fields. Get there early to get a lift.

Thanks to sponsors and the Alturas Chamber, the event will come together again this year.

Sponsors for 1997's Alturas Balloonfest in clude: Alturas Tire, Plumas Bank, Cavasso-Sharp Families; California Market/Heard Plumbing; Coast to Coast/J.C. Penney's; Four Seasons; Kinman and Curry; Modoc Classic Cruisers; Modoc Motor Parts/NAPA/AirTouch; Pacific Power, Pizza & Pasta Place/Ft. Bidwell Hotel.

For further information, or to make ride arrange ments, contact the Alturas Chamber of Commerce at 522 So. Main St., Alturas or call (916) 233-4434.

Medicine Lake comments due Sept. 30

The Bureau of Land Man agement, Forest Service and Siskiyou County Air Pollu tion Control District have ex tended the opportu nity for pub lic/agency comment on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement/ Envi ronmental Impact Report (DEIS/DEIR) for the proposed Fourmile Hill Geothermal De velopment through September 30.

The Federal and County agencies agreed to extend the 60-day comment period for an additional two weeks to en sure that all indi viduals, wishing to comment on the DIES/DEIR have adequate time to provide meaningful comments. Comments should be specific to the DEIS/DEIR.

Address written comments to: Randall Sharp USFS/BLM, Fourmile Hill Geother mal Development Project EIS/EIR Coordina tor, 800 W. 12th Street, Alturas, CA 96101. Telephone 916-233-5811 for information.

The Proposed Fourmile Hill Geothermal Develop ment Project is located on the Kla math and Modoc National Forests in Siskiyou and Modoc Counties, California., The proposed geothermal power plant, well pads, and fluid pipelines would be lo cated ap proximately three miles northwest of Medicine Lake on the Klamath Na tional Forest. The proposed transmission line would ex tend in an easterly direction from the proposed power plant site through the Klamath and Modoc National Forests to a proposed substation along the BPA Malin-Warner trans mission line on the Modoc National Forest near Perez.

Record news summaries for Sept.. 18, 1997 issue


County to sue Forest Service over cuts
MJUSD hires new principal
Family escapes house fire safely
John Kerr is new council member
Forest considers power line plan amendment
Timber receipt impacts still a question

The forecast: Following the heavy rains, it will be partly cloudy today with sunny skies turning up Friday and throughout the weekend. Temperatures will be cool in the mid-70s with lows in the 30s. Monday will be warmer.

County to sue Forest Ser vice over cutbacks

On Tuesday the Modoc County Board of Supervisors unanimously voted to give County Council Hugh Comisky authority to file a 30-day notice of intent to sue against the U.S. Forest Ser vice.

Filing such notice is the first step in a lawsuit by Modoc County against USFS with regard to the Forest Ser vice recent announcement that there will be severe cut backs in timber harvesting and sales in the Modoc Na tional Forest.

Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette told the Board that the cutbacks could result in the local Forest Ser vice having to lay off 24 per manent employees and 108 temporary employees. The cutbacks could also result in reduced fundings to the Modoc County Road Department and Office of Education. (See re lated articles.)

While Board members and Comisky expressed great con cern about the loss of jobs, Comisky emphasized that the suit against the Forest Service will not be successful if based on economic impact. Rather, the focus of Modoc County's argument in the lawsuit will be the environmental damage to the forest (overgrowth, fires, etc.) that could result from drastically reducing the tim ber harvest.

"There's a very strong pos sibility here of a significant environmental impact," Comisky said of the forest. "There is an increase in the danger of destroying the re maining value of the asset."

Even using that argument, Comisky emphasized to the Board that the suit might not be successful. However, he said that even if the suit was not successful, there was still the chance that over the long haul, bringing the lawsuit could provide some benefits to the County and put it in a stronger position in the fu ture.

"It may not be successful," Comisky said. "But that's not the criteria, it's the results and what you achieve. . . You make a very strong statement on behalf of the County. Later there may be collateral bene fits."

Board member Joe Colt compared the current situa tion to the Melvin Carter case that the County faced in the re cent past. He pointed out that while the County wasn't suc cessful in getting rid of Carter, "There was a law written," to prevent such prob lems in the future.

"Bottom line, we got the job done," Colt said.

Supervisor Ron McIntyre raised the related issue of the structure of the Forest Service and what services that agency performs. While stating that his top priority is keeping Forest Service jobs in Modoc County, McIntyre pointed out that the Forest Service no longer builds roads, main tains campgrounds and does very little logging. These are all services the Forest Service used to provide.

"What do you guys do? Where are we headed?" McIntyre asked Henderson-Bramlette. He later added, "Let's holler and scream about rearranging the Forest Service"

Henderson-Bramlette said she agreed with McIntyre and said many Forest Service em ployees are frustrated with the red-tape they face. She em phasized that the silver lining in the timber cutback cloud is that the County and local For est Service can work together to make needed changes.

"This can really turn out to be a good thing for all of us," she said. "It's a wake-up call."

Other Board members and Comisky said that they sup ported McIntyre's views, but Comisky again stated that such changes could not be made through a lawsuit, which needed to focus on the environmental impact on the forest. Comisky suggested that the issues of Forest Ser vice structure and services and the economic impact to Modoc County of losing 132 jobs be addressed through the political process.

Comisky half-jokingly suggested that the County should send a group of bare foot school children to the steps of the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. to illus trate the effect the timber cut backs could have on the chil dren of Modoc.

The Board ended up ap proving a letter stating the County's position against the cutbacks that will be sent to appropriate Federal Politi cians.

Bristling at criticism that the County should have done something earlier, Adminis trative Director Mike Maxwell asked Henderson-Bramlette if the Quincy Li brary had anything to do with the reductions at Modoc Na tional Forest.

"The Quincy Library Group did not affect our fund ing," she responded.

Maxwell also pointed out that the Forest Service deci sion making process that led to the cutbacks does not allow for local input and the County did not find out about the re ductions until last week.

In other matters before the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday:

Grand Jury Report: In their report, the Grand Jury has requested the resignation of Comisky as District Attor ney. At the Board meeting, Supervisor Pat Cantrall stated her support of Comisky and the job he has done as D.A. She also said the Grand Jury made "misstatements," par ticularly as applying to the is sue of the procedure by which Comisky obtained a gun. She requested a retraction by the Grand Jury.

Supervisor Colt used the terms "shocked" and "floored" to describe his reac tion to the report. "The rec ommendation they gave was an opinion," he said.

Lorraine Flournoy, a member of the Grand Jury, also appeared before the Board. Flournoy said that after consulting with counsel, she felt that while she could not discuss how the Grand Jury came to a decision, "I can discuss how I feel about the report.

"I was as shocked as ev erybody else," she said about the request for Comisky to re sign. "I want to go on the record so that people won't ha rass me. I support Hugh Comisky."

Comisky has declined to comment on the Grand Jury Report until he has had fur ther opportunity to confer with counsel he has retained in the matter.

Budget Hearing: The Board unanimously approved the 1997-98 Budget Recom mendations presented by Maxwell. Under the recom mendations, General Fund revenues are slated for $7,483,307 and Non-General Fund revenues are listed at $16,870,769 for a total of $24,354,076. Total budget ex penditures are listed at the same amount with an unallo cated reserve of one-time funds of $202,648 available for the Board to use if needed.

The report also provided various pie charts to show money sources and expendi tures. One chart shows that the total revenue, including designated funds, property taxes and other revenues come to a total of $32,685,031. The chart also shows that 88 percent of those revenues are already designated and un available to the Supervisors.

Colt and Board Chairman Ben Zandstra said they hoped County citizens could see the chart so they would under stand that the Board only has control of a very small portion of the total revenues, and thus, very little "wiggle room."

Theresa Jacques, Chief Fi nancial Officer for Modoc Medical Center, also gave a report to the Board on the numbers for the coming fiscal year. The hospital is estimat ing a loss of $484,483 for next year. Jacques also told the Board that the loss for fiscal year 1997 was about $1.2 mil lion. "We've come around by about 60 percent," she said.

In the Recommendation supplied by Maxwell, the es timated loss was stated at $682,183. Jacques stated this figure included paying prin cipal on a bond and fixed as sets fund of $50,000 in case equipment breaks down.

Tulelake Growers Asso cia tion: Howard Klassen and Deb Crisp of the Tulelake Growers Association ap peared before the Board to dis cuss their opposition to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Draft Integrated Pest Man agement Plan. Comisky told the Board that the plan would call for eliminating pesticide control in Tulelake and sur rounding areas and introduc ing biological control, or bringing in bugs that are predators of the pests.

The Board gave permis sion to Comisky to file a no tice of intent to sue against U.S. Fish and Wildlife, after he confers with counsel for other potential parties, includ ing Tulelake Growers Asso ciation and Siskiyou County.

MJUSD hires principal

The Modoc Joint Unified School District has hired a prin cipal for Modoc High School who will assume duties October 20.

The announcement was made Wednesday afternoon af ter Dewey "Duke" Pasquini accepted the District's offer. Pasquini is currently a teacher at Stagg High School in Stockton. The Modoc High School Principal position will be his first administrative position and he does hold a California Administrative Services credential plus teach ing credentials.

He has 30 years of teaching experience and has been heav ily involved in community service.

Fire destroys Alturas home

An early morning fire Sunday destroyed an Alturas home, but fortunately the six occupants escaped without in jury.

According to Alturas Fire Chief Roger Dorris, the fire erupted about 6 a.m. Sept. 14, and the home was fully en gulfed when firemen arrived. The cause of the fire, said Dorris, was cushions placed too close to the heating unit in the living room.

The occupants of the home at 213 Danhauser, Bonnie Nelson, her children and guests were able to get out of the house, but lost most of their possessions. According to Dorris, a smoke alarm did go off in the home.

The home was gutted, said Dorris. He said when the fire department arrived, less than four minutes after the report, flames were shooting out the windows and the blaze was very hot. It took firemen over an hour to extinguish the blaze.

Nelson who has lived in Alturas for the past three years and "loves the community," has had a rough week, but shared she is grateful to community people for their kind re sponse and support.

As a temporary employee for the past three years working in the timber department for Devil's Garden Ranger District, Modoc National Forest, Nelson was recently in formed her job will end as of September 27, due to budget cuts. She had transferred to Modoc from another forest.

She's not sure what the future holds for her, but she knows she's grateful that she and her three children, Chrissy, 15; Sara, 10 and Samantha, 6 are alive. She wants to impress upon people how important a working smoke detector can be in a home.

"The smoke detector saved our lives," she offers. She has learned what is important. "It doesn't matter how much we lost, because my family is safe and our pets are safe," Nelson shared with Forest Service co-workers and friends.

Without the benefit of insurance to cover their personal be longings, and with their winter coats burned in the fire, the Nelson family has an immediate need for coats. The Sheriff's Department, TEACH, Inc., the U.S. Forest Service, Devil's Garden Ranger District co-workers and friends are assisting the family. Donations may be directed to any one of these sites.

Nelson and her family are housed at a local hotel for the time being, not knowing in which direction they will be go ing. The single mom would like to find full time work and be able to stay in Alturas, but everything is yet a question mark.

Kerr is new councilman

Longtime Alturas businessman John Kerr has been ap pointed to the Alturas City Council and will assume duties at the September 23 meeting.

Kerr was appointed by the existing council Tuesday morning to fill the unexpired term of John Hagerman, who died unexpectedly last month. That term goes through April, 1998, when the seat will be up for election.

Alturas Mayor Dick Steyer said he was very pleased with the four candidates who applied for the position, Kerr, Joe Coffin, Roy Moore and Marilyn Curry.

Kerr owned and operated Kerr Mortuary in Alturas, which he just recently sold.

Forest con siders plan amend ment on power line corri dor loca tions

The Modoc National Forest is considering amending its Forest Plan which would al low place ment of power corri dors on Forest Service lands.

According to Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette, comments re ceived in the proposed amendment pro cess gener ally favor locat ing power lines on Forest lands when those lands are the better al terna tive.

The amendment could im pact the Sierra Pacific Power Company route for the Alturas Intertie.

According to Project Manager John Owens, the company has resubmitted its ap plication to the Forest Service for a special use per mit allowing the pre ferred Route A, which comes off Devil's Garden and heads south just west of Alturas.

The Forest Service had de nied that route because Henderson-Bramlette ruled it did not fit into the Forest Plan. That denial caused Sierra Pacific to go to alter nate Route B, which starts in front of Arrowhead Golf Course, heads west past the Auction Yard be fore turning south.

According to Henderson-Bramlette most comments in the proposed amendment com ment pe riod favored the Route A alternative over Route B be cause Route B impacted more private landowners.

Owens said Sierra Pacific has placed its Route B applica tion to the California Public Utilities Commission on hold until the deci sion is finalized by the Forest Service. Route A, he said, is still the compa ny's preferred route for the power line.

Henderson-Bramlette said the comment period has ended and once she makes the de ci sion on the Route, it will go through an ap peal period.

The amendment to the Forest Plan will also im pact the proposed geother mal plants in the Medicine Lake and Telephone Flat areas, which are now out for public comment.

Timber funding impacts still in gray area

With the U.S. Forest Ser vice announcing cutbacks in timber sales from Modoc Na tional Forest, the question naturally arises as to what fi nancial effects this will have on the Modoc County Roads Department and the Modoc County Office of Education. (MCOE) Both entities share a portion of the proceeds from the timber sales.

The answer for right now, unfortunately, is the nobody really knows.

Public Works Director John Pedersen and Education Superintendent Carol Har baugh both said earlier this week that they were looking forward to meeting with the Forest Service to get more in formation on what the dollar amounts involved might be.

Figures provided by Har baugh show that MCOE has budgeted $952,946 in timber sales funds for the 1997-98 school year. Harbaugh also pointed out that the money budgeted for next year was re ceived this year, therefore, the funding is at full level for next year.

Of the total given to MCOE for 1997-98, Modoc Joint Uni fied School District is sched uled to receive $518,879. That figure is 7.4 percent of the total budget of $7,037,847 for the district. Tulelake School District is scheduled to re ceive $139,542, or 3.1 percent of the total budget. (The funds are given on an average daily attendance basis and Tule lake District only received funds for students living in Modoc County.) Surprise Val ley School District is sched uled to receive $114,253 which represents 7.0 percent of its total budget.

MCOE itself will receive $180,272 under the formula next year, but will give half of that money to the three school districts in the form of block grants. Harbaugh said some of the remaining money is given to special education and the rest is spent on various programs such as the media center and cooperative efforts with the Arts Council.

Harbaugh also said that she will urge the County Edu cation Board of Trustees to pass a resolution urging the Forest Service to follow it's Implementation Plan issued in 1991 which calls for 45.5 million board feet to be har vested each year.

While things are steady through next year, it is diffi cult to state what will happen in 1999 and beyond. In report ing to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, Forest Supervi sor Diane Henderson-Bram lette emphasized that Congress has not made any specific plans beyond 1998. Theoretically, Modoc County could continue to get the fund ing it had expected or it could get nothing.

Figures provided by Nancy Gardner of the Forest Service show that in 1991, the county re ceived $2.7 million. Under the plan set in place in 1993, the County gets a lower per centage of a five-year average of timber sales with each pass ing year. Thus, the total dropped, or 73 percent of the average in 1998.

The figures for 1991-1995 show an average of 41.3 mil lion board feet of timber har vested per year. The timber sale averages for those same five years were 33.8 million board feet per year. Gardner also said that the sales for 1996 were around 33 million board feet.

Assuming an average tim ber sale of 33 million board feet per year for the past five years, and that the average money made on those sales for the past five years that ended up going to the County was $2.15 million, and that timber sales will drop to 10 million board feet per year in 1999-2003, and that the per centage of the funds the county is entitled to will drop by three percent year in 1999-2003, and that the percentage of funds the county is entitled to will drop by three percent each year: one could make the fol lowing assumptions (and make no mistake this is guesswork) about the years 1999-2003.

In 1999, the average board feet sold for the past five years would drop to 28.4 million board feet, or about a 16 per cent reduction. The total to Modoc County would then be around $1.8 million, but the County would only be entitled to 70 percent of that total, or $1.26 million.

For the year 2000, the aver age board feet sold for the past five years would drop to 25.8 million board feet, or about a 22 percent reduction from 1998. The total to Modoc County would be around $1.67 million, but the County would only be entitled to 67 percent of that total or $1.12 million.

For the year 2001, the aver age board feet sold for the past five years would drop to 19 million board feet, or about a 42 percent reduction from 1998. The total to Modoc County would be around $1.28 million, but the County would only be entitled to 64 percent of that total or $798,000.

For the year 2002, the aver age board feet sold for the past five years would drop to 14.6 million board feet, or about a 58 percent reduction from 1998. The total to Modoc County would be around $903,000, but the County would only be entitled to 61 percent of that total or $550,000.

For the year 2003, the aver age board feet sold for the past five years would drop to 10 million board feet, or about a 70 percent reduction from 1998. The total to Modoc County would be around $645,000, but the County would only be entitled to 58 percent of that total or $374,000.

Therefore, based on this model, the Roads Department and MCOE could go from re ceiving nearly one million dollars in 1998 to getting just $187,000 each in 2003.

Again, consulting a crys tal ball is probably more reli able at this point, but this model hopefully gives some idea of the potential funding cuts the County could face.

Record news summaries for Sept. 25, 1997 issue

Judge cites Grand Jury make-up, function
Modoc Forest amends plan on power lines
Modoc area code changes to 530 in November
Groups organize against Medicine Lake plan
New Postmaster takes over in Alturas

The forecast: Clouds are in the forecast for the coming four days, but there are no major storms predicted. Look for cooler days with clearing on Monday.

Judge Baker cites function, make-up of Grand Jury

With some pretty heavy criticism aimed at the Modoc County Grand Jury by the Modoc County Board of Supervisors and other individuals, Superior Court Judge John Baker offered some clarity this week.

Most of the harsh words about the Grand Jury report cen tered around the recommendation by the Grand Jury that Modoc District Attorney Hugh Comisky resign. It was a strong statement by the jury and elicited some backlash from a few local individuals.

Comisky has stated he will not resign his position, but has not yet responded to the report. He has been asked by the Record for his comments.

"It's not appropriate for me to publicly comment on ei ther the substance of the Grand Jury report or on the backlash it's generated, except to the extent that the backlash has called into question my integrity and that of the members of the Grand Jury," said Judge Baker this week. "It is true, as sug gested, that the Grand Jury was hand-picked by me. The members were appointed based upon their personal in tegrity, intelligence, independence, interest, and life expe riences, and because collectively they represent a cross sec tion of the County geographically, politically and otherwise. Anyone who questions this need only look at the list of the grand jurors which is in their report."

While a couple of members of the Grand Jury have stated they do not support the request that Comisky resign, Baker finds nothing unusual in that stance nor anything sinister in the report.

"That fact that Grand Jury members publicly disavow the report does not in any way affect the report's integrity," Baker said. "The law requires that at least 12 of the 17 mem bers of the Grand Jury endorse the report, which was the case."

Baker said he regards the belief that he picked the Grand Jury to get back at Comisky as absurd.

"It has been suggested that I specifically selected the grand jurors with the intent that the Grand Jury take the District Attorney to task for the incident which occurred in Reno," said Baker. "I regard this as an incredible tribute to my psy chic powers, as the incident upon which the recom mendation was based occurred over six months after the Grand Jury was appointed."

Baker also had praise for the efforts of the Grand Jury and said he believes the backlash is undeserved, although not wholly unexpected.

"In a more serious vein, any suggestion that the Grand Jury's report was in any manner the product of any one other than the Grand Jury is pure fiction and constitutes an irre sponsible attack upon the integrity of all the members of the Grand Jury," said Baker. "The Grand Jury, and the Grand Jury alone, determined what issues to investigate, and what findings and recommendations to make with re spect to those issues.

"The members are deserving of nothing but the highest praise from all of us for their hard work, independence, diligence, fairness, restraint, and courage. I say courage, because in issuing their report they anticipated the backlash against them, but chose to issue the report anyway. They put in more time, had more meetings, talked to more people, and did more studying than any Grand Jury in recent memory."

The Board of Supervisors publicly complained last week that the Grand Jury report was published in the Modoc Record before they saw it and felt that was an underhanded act.

"The Grand Jury had nothing to do with the manner in which the report was issued," said Baker. "The local practice is for the Grand Jury to submit its report to the judge, who then takes care of its public issuance. Furthermore, it was issued in compliance with the law. It was made available to county officials on September 8 and was effectively issued to the public upon its publication on September 11."

Forest amends plan on power line corridors

Modoc National Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette signed a decision last Friday that will amend the Forest Plan to allow power line corridors on the forest, out side of existing corridors.

The major change in the plan places emphasis on impacts to communities and associated residential areas.

Under the amended plan, which is up for a 45-day appeal period, the Forest continues to "minimize proliferation of separate utility corridors by confining need to existing cor ridors." The amendment now reads: "However, consider construc tion of new corridors outside existing utility rights-of-way if site specific NEPA analysis indicates technology, safety, national and state practices, engineering, environmental quality, or impacts on communities and associated residen tial areas, precludes no existing uses."

The amendment opens the way for Sierra Pacific Power Company to re-apply to use the preferred Route A for its Alturas Intertie power line project. The Forest had origi nally denied the route because it was outside of existing cor ridors. Sierra Pacific has applied for a special use permit for Route A and will be placed under consideration by the forest. The new decision will impact power line corridors in the Medicine and Telephone Flat areas, where a major geothermal project is proposed.

The denial of Route A on the Alturas Intertie by the Forest Service placed the starting point of the power line on alterna tive Route B, in front of Arrowhead Golf Course and that route would have impacted several more residences.

According to Henderson-Bramlette, much of the public comment on the Forest Plan amendment favored using the Forest lands if the other routing would impact more commu nities or homes.

The appeal period on the decision is 45 days and for fur ther information, contact Henderson-Bramlette at the Modoc National Forest, 233-5811.

Modoc area code changes from 916 to 530 on Nov. 1

Modoc County's area code will change from the present 916 to 530 on November 1.

According to Lorran King, of the California Public Utilities Commission, the phone number change is neces sary be cause the 916 area code available numbers were being gobbled up in the Sacramento area.

The area code will change but the other seven digits re main the same.

The increase use of phone service and growth in that southern part of the 916 area prompted the change. King said the in crease use of phone service, coupled with cellular phones, pagers, radio phones and the Internet depleted the phone number bank much quicker than anticipated.

The good news is that Modoc and much of the northern part of the former 916 area code will be able to keep the 530 area code for years. The 916 area code in the Sacramento area may have to be changed again in the next five years.

Citizens Utilities reminds local cus tomers that a six-month transition period will be assigned to the 530 area code on November 1. During that time callers can dial either area code to reach their in tended party. However, on May 16, 1998 mandatory dialing will go into effect and callers will receive a recording that asks them to re-dial, using the correct area code.

The new 530 area code will serve cus tomers in all or portions of 23 northern California counties now served by the 916 area code (see map). The 916 area code will continue to serve all of Sacramento County, the south Placer County communi ties of Roseville, Loomis, Rocklin,

Newcastle, Lincoln, Penryn, Pleasant Grove, the City of El Dorado Hills, and the city of West Sacramento.

The new area code will not affect the seven digit dialing system, said Citizens. In some cases, customers may find they will need to dial the 10 digits if a portion of their local call ing area is now outside the new area code boundaries. The new area code does not affect 911 emergency calls, directory assistance or local service rates.

Groups organize against Medicine Lake projects

On Sunday, September 21, representatives of several groups concerned with the proposed geothermal devel opment in the Medicine Lake Highlands met in Burney to discuss common concerns and decide on a course of ac tion.

Representatives of the Pit River Tribe, the Modoc Tribe, the Klamath Forest Alliance, the California Wilderness Coalition, Save Mount Shasta/The Mount Shasta Bioregional Ecology Center, Medicine Lake Citizens for a Quality Environment, the Medicine Lake Homeowners Association, and the Fall River Wild Trout Foundation gathered at the Pit River Tribal Health Center for the afternoon and shared infor mation about the proposed geothermal projects on fed eral public land and the ad verse effects which will result if these projects are allowed to proceed.

The proposed Fourmile Hill geothermal project, being developed by a San Jose com pany, CalPine Corporation, is the most immediate threat to the area, but one other project is in the developmental stages, and there are at least four other geothermal leases which could be developed in the area.

"The transmission lines, well pads, power plant, and steam from these projects will all be visible from the Native American sacred places in this areas," said Floyd Buck skin, cultural representative for the Pit River Tribe. "There has been no govern ment-to-government consul tation on these projects be tween the tribes and the fed eral government, as is re quired by presidential execu tive order. In August 1996, the Pit River Tribe issued a reso lution opposing any geother mal projects in the Medicine Lake Highlands which would impact our sacred sites, but the Forest Service and the BLM are ignoring this and pushing ahead with the projects."

In addition to concerns of Native Americans, environ mental and fishing and hunt ing groups are also opposed to the proposed projects. "The Medicine Lake Highlands are unique and relatively undisturbed," said Lori Cooper, the Klamath Forest Alliance's Forest Protection Coordinator. "The draft EIS for the proposed Fourmile Hill geothermal project admits that hundreds acres of old growth will be destroyed, which is vital habitat for species like goshawks, pileated woodpeckers, martens, and fishers. The Medicine Lake area is also a very popular recreation area for the North State. What are the Forest Service and BLM thinking? Geothermal pro jects are not compatible with wildlife and recreation."

The deadline for com ments on the Fourmile Hill geothermal project is Septem ber 30. They can be sent to Randall Sharp, Project Leader, Modoc National For est, 800 West 12th Street, Al turas, Calif. 96101.


Record News summaries for October 2, 1997
County parks getting an upgrade
Young kids set fire to garage
Pair of fires are human-caused
Deer hunters pray for storms
Modoc Homecoming is October 10
Highway 139 closed for repairs

The forecast: Variable cloudiness for today with a 30 percent chance of rain. Look for partly cloudy through the weekend. Continued highs near 70 lows 30s and 40s.

County parks get $95,000 upgrade

Playground areas in the county park system will be get ting a $95,000 upgrade, largely because of safety require ments on equipment and replacement of the "fall zone" ma terials.

According to Rick Hironymous, Deputy Director Public Works, the parks earmarked for new equipment include Alturas (Veterans Park), Cedarville, Canby, Adin, Lookout and Newell. Some of the park equipment is quite old, said Hironymous.

Hironymous said the project is out for bid currently and he hopes the work can be completed this winter. Bids will close November 3. The funds are allocated as $20,000 for Alturas and $15,000 each for the five other parks.

The project includes new playground equipment at each of the parks and replacement of the fall zone materials from sand or gravel to wood chips.

Hironymous said the project is aimed at complying with state and federal guidelines on playground safety and the new equipment has to be in by the year 2,000, or the county's liability increases.

The plan is to replace the equipment at each park and have at least as much as is currently available, including slides, swings and so on.

In addition, said Hironymous, the pavilion area at the Alturas Park is scheduled, from a different fund source, for resurfacing. That project will be done next year and will be either asphalt or concrete. The resurfacing will include the pavilion area as well as the basketball courts.

Bids are also out for the re-painting of the Davis Creek Church and re-roofing of the Adin Community Center.

Young kids set fire to garage

A three-year-old and a six-year-old playing with matches are the probable cause of a fire Saturday afternoon which destroyed a garage at 600 East D Street, Alturas.

According to Alturas Chief of Police Larry Pickett, the kids were playing in the garage which had a lot of paper goods stored in it and when it caught fire it went up in a hurry.

Alturas Fire Chief Roger Dorris said the garage was fully involved when the Fire Department arrived and the best they could hope to do was keep the fire contained to the garage and away from the residences. The garage, which was wooden and made of old-railroad ties burned very hot, said Dorris. They couldn't save the building, said Dorris, because the fire was reported too late.

Dorris said 24 firemen and three trucks responded to the blaze. It was fortunate, said Dorris that neither child was in jured.

Pair of human-caused fires doused quickly

A pair of human-caused fires were put out quickly Tuesday and Wednesday, one in Stone Coal Valley and another at Shields Creek in the Warner Mountains.

According to Carol Sharp, U.S. Forest Service, the fire in Stone Coal was started in some equipment and spread to a chip pile Tuesday afternoon. It was reported quickly and the response was rapid. The fire was kept to a small area. Three CDF engines, a CDF dozer, two Forest Service engines and one helicopter hit the fire. The cause remains under investi gation.

A second fire erupted near Shields Creek Tuesday and burned about an acre-and-a-half before it was extinguished. That fire is thought to be human-caused as is under investi gation.

Two CDF engines, two CDF hand crews, one CDF dozer, one Forest Service engine and private equipment fought the blaze.

Sharp said the quick response to both fires kept them from getting going full force in dry conditions.

Hunters praying for wet weather opener

Deer hunters are praying the big storm predicted for to day actually comes through, otherwise Saturday's deer season opener could be pretty slow.

According to the National Weather Service, rain low and snow in the higher elevations is predicted with the storm due to hit the county today.

According to Department of Fish and Game's Paul Wertz in Redding, the warm weather made openers in other parts of the northstate very slow and without a good storm, it could be the same for Modoc.

Deer sightings have been pretty lean, according to local hunters, but the deer are remaining in the high country because of the fair weather. Wertz said X-1 hunters are finding the going difficult, and a good storm would be a great improvement.

The X-zones are filled and hunters should be showing up starting Friday. There are 80 tags for X-2; 450 hunters for X3a; 1,215 for X3b; 525 for X5b and 173 for X-5a. Zone X-1 has 3,000 deer tags.

MHS Homecoming changed to Oct. 10

Don't be confused by the Homecoming banner over Main Street. Modoc High School's Homecoming football game has been changed from Oct. 24 against Weed to Oct. 10 against Bonanza. But it's not this week.

According to Modoc High Athletic Director Lane Bates, the change was made because of Weed High School's lack of players on the varsity team. Modoc was afraid Weed could cancel the varsity game on Oct. 24. Weed, which has requested movement into the Evergreen League be cause of declining en rollment, may move out of the Shasta Cascade League next season. They have played their first two games of the season. Weed apparently has enough players on the junior varsity squad.

Modoc coach Shaun Wood said he doesn't know whether the Braves Oct. 24 game against Weed will be canceled, but Weed has played its game so far this season.

The Braves will celebrate their Homecoming the week of Oct. 10 with all the regular activities with the junior varsity game against Bonanza starting at 5:30 p.m. and the varsity game to follow at 7:30 p.m. The Homecoming Queen is crowned at half time of the varsity game.

The sports calendars released by the high school have the Oct. 24 Homecoming date on them, because they were printed before it was known Weed was having trou ble fielding a team.

Roadwork to close Highway 139

The California Depart ment of Transportation (Caltrans) will close High way 139 at the junction with Route 161 to Walsh Road on TueModoc Homeocming is anticipates reopen ing approximately Saturday, October 4 at 7 p.m.

This work is part of the current $4.6 million roadway rehabilitation and realign ment project. Work will con sist of raising railroad tracks to match the elevation of the finished roadway. A tempo rary detour on county roads is available from Junction 139/161 along Stateline Road to Walsh Road to Route 139. When the railroad work is complete the road work will be reopened to one-way traffic controlled by flaggers and pi lot car; delays of up to 10 minutes may be expected. Completion expected by the end of September. Work in progress six days a week, Monday through Saturday.

Caltrans wishes to advise all motorists of this work schedule, to drive with caution and reduce their speed when approaching this area, and to be prepared to stop if neces sary.

Record News summaries for Oct. 9 issue


Outfitter guide files suit against Forest
Winter weather on the way?
Alturas Intertie gets approval
Modoc Homecoming is Friday night
Post Office boosts building permits
County Road boss resigns
Cattlewomen pick top woman of year

Outfitter hits Forest with second lawsuit

A second Modoc outfitter guide, Don Collis, has filed a suit in federal court against the Modoc National Forest and three employees, charging racketeering.

Collis, who has been a packer and outfitter operating out of his Pepperdine Camp filed the lawsuit in September, which dovetails with a similar lawsuit filed in February by outfit ter guides Tom and Ruth Lake.

Both complaints were filed under the RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) Act.

The Lake's case has a tentative hearing date of Dec. 5 in federal court in Sacramento. It's been continued in the past. The Lake's complaint is against the Forest Service and in dividual employees of the Warner Mountain Ranger District: Edie Asrow, district ranger; Bill Tierney, recre ation assistant; Elizabeth Ballard, recreation officer; and forestry technician Jay Caulkins.

Collis' complaint charges Asrow, Tierney and Ballard with "the intent to harm his business through fraudulent ac tivities which caused business losses. He seeks nearly $3 million in damages from the individual defendants and the Department of Agriculture for various negligence claims. He also seeks punitive damages.

Collis has taken non-use on Pepperdine Camp the past few years, which he had operated for 35 years under Forest Service permit. Until 1992 it was the only packing and outfit ter-guide business in the South Warner Wilderness area.

Collis' complaint states that on or about January 1, 1991, he was approached by prospective buyers for his pack station. Collis offered to sell, but when the buyers met with Tierney, representing the Forest Service, to discuss the sale, Tierney stated the structures at the pack station could not be sold and would have to be removed. According to the complaint, Tierney should have known the U.S. Forest Service permit issued to Collis expressly stated that "The holder of the per mit is not required to obtain the consent of the Forest Service to the sale of permitted improvements."

Collis claims that Tierney's statements caused him stress because he had counted on selling the business for his retirement income.

The complaint further states: in 1992, the Lake's started another packing service. Lake had worked for the U.S. Forest Service from 1966 to 1992, but retired after his Supervisor, Tierney attempted to terminate Lake's employ ment in retaliation for Lake's whistleblowing in regards to misappropriations of Forest Service funds. When Lake ap plied for a special use permit, Tierney, Asrow and Ballard allegedly delayed approval of the permit for 22 weeks, al though the permit is good for only half the year.

In late 1992 or early 1993, the Lakes and Collis discussed the possibility of the Lake's purchasing Pepperdine Camp.

According to the complaint, in April 1993, Collis was called into the Warner Mountain District Office in Cedarville to meet with Tierney, Asrow and Ballard. They told Collis they were going to "have to start enforcing many regulations on Collis regarding his special permit." Tierney allegedly told Collis that he was "out to get" Tom Lake, not Collis and Asrow allegedly said that all the prob lems with the permit were the fault of Tom Lake.

According to the complaint, Tierney, Asrow and Ballard informed Collis that the structures at Pepperdine Camp were "illegal" and he would have to tear them down. The com plaint also alleges that they told Collis if they allowed him to have a reserved site, Tom Lake would also have to have one.

The complaint also alleged that Asrow sent an e-mail message to Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette on April 19, 1993 stating "in response to Mr. Lake's request for a facility, the District has reassessed public need for all such facilities on the district. We have taken action to phase out Mr. Collis' facilities." The complaint says that at the time Asrow sent the message she was "well aware that no such assessment or reassessment of public need for facili ties such as Collis' had been done by her or anyone else in her ranger district."

The complaint further alleges that Tierney, Asrow and Ballard proposed new and unnecessarily strict conditions on the outfitter guide business as "part of their further efforts to harm Tom Lake." The complaint also charges that Collis was harassed by forest employees over a gate and other pro visions of his operating procedures at Pepperdine Camp.

The complaint alleges further that Collis was forced to take non-use for successive years because of harassment and intimidation by the Forest service employees, or because of delays in the permit process.

Winter coming early this year? Today!

There has been a lot of news reporting and even a statewide summit called by Governor Pete Wilson on the possible impacts of El Nino for this winter's weather.

For Modoc, the picture remains unclear, but the weather forecast for this week may make one want to go about and get new flannels or Gore-Tex. Fall just started, but the National Weather Service is warning Modoc and north eastern California to be prepared for winter today. Great news, right?

There was a winter storm watch issued for Wednesday night and continuing through today for Siskiyou and Modoc Counties and the Sierra Nevada. Snow levels were predicted to lower to about 5,000 feet today with winds in the mountains hitting up to 50 m.p.h. There may be gusty winds at the lower elevations. Estimates for snowfall range from three to six inches around 5,000 feet up to a foot or more in the high mountains.

On Friday there will be lingering showers but decreas ing clouds, expect cool and breezy weather today with highs in the low 50s. Lows could reach into the 20s.

The good news is that Saturday through Sunday calls for sunny and warmer days.

Alturas Intertie Route gets approval

The U.S. Forest Service in Alturas has signed a Record of Decision select ing Route A as the alterna tive to be implemented for Sierra Pacific's Alturas Intertie Project.

Tom Ratcliff signed the decision for Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette October 7. The decision came after the Forest agreed to amend the Forest Plan to allow power line corridors outside of existing corri dors if impacts on commu nities and residences were impacted adversely when the existing corridors were used.

The actions allowed in Route A include the con struction and operation of approximately two miles of 230kV line between the Malin-Warner 230kV line and the Modoc National Forest boundary by the Bonneville Power Administration.

It also allows construc tion and operation of one mile of the Sierra Pacific Power Company's 345kV line in the Rock Creek drainage and approxi mately 1,000 feet of the line in the Likely Mountain and an upgrade of existing communication facilities at Happy Camp Electronic site.

The decision is subject to appeal and written appeals must be postmarked or re ceived by the Appeals Deciding Officer, 630 Sansome Street, San Francisco, 94111, within 45 days from today. For more information on the Record of decision, call Randall Sharp at the Modoc National Forest, 233-5811.

The Modoc National Forest originally refused to allow the Alturas Intertie to use Route A, which comes off forest lands on Devil's Garden west of Alturas and heads south to Reno. That refusal forced Sierra Pacific to request the California Public Utilities Commission approval for Route B, which started in front of the golf course and went west to Auction Yard before turning south. City and county governments opposed Route B because it impacted more homes and landowners and requested another look at Route A.

While the approval of the preferred route is in line with Sierra Pacific's plans, just when the actual con struction of the power line will start is uncertain. Opponents of the line have filed suit in Washoe County, hoping to force an environmental report on a portion of the route in that county.

Modoc High's Homecoming starts with big game and queen crowning

It's time to pull out the pur ple and white as Modoc High faces the Bonanza High Antlers from Bonanza, Ore. for Modoc's Friday night Homecoming Football game at the Ed Carver Stadium, Alturas October 10.

Today at noon, Modoc High Leadership students will be selling and serving barbe cued burgers in the school quad for $3 a burger for both students and the community.

Beginning at 7:00 p.m. the playoff game of Powder Puff football will take place be tween the Senior and Junior girl teams, for all will ing spectators at Carver Stadium.

The traditional bonfire rally for the stu dent body and the community, will fol low the Powder Puff game around 9:00 p.m. in the sta dium parking lot.

Friday morning, students will be con structing their floats for a parade down Main Street from the high school to Veterans' Park just after 1:00 p.m., followed by a rally in the park. The Modoc High School Band will per form, and each class from freshman to se nior will have a float and the class behind. The community is encour aged to show their spirit and support by lining downtown side walks to cheer them on.

Homecoming Football games will begin Friday night at 5:00 p.m. with Modoc High's Junior Varsity team on Carver Field.

During half-time of the Varsity game, the surprise announcement will be made as to who will reign as Homecoming Queen and court. The student body votes for their senior choice today.

Senior Class Homecoming royalty in cludes Kayte Christensen, daughter of Cathy and Randy Christensen; Ginny Greene, daughter of Chip and Ginger Greene and Tessa Siegel, daughter of Paul and Karen Siegel, all of Alturas.

Many Alturas businesses which are sport ing purple and white window displays, thank the JV and Varsity Cheerleaders for their mul tiple efforts. The decora tions are the cheerleaders way of giving thanks for the many donations they re ceived from local business, which enabled them to at tend cheer leading camp this past summer.

Modoc High Athletic Booster Club will be operat ing the concessions at the game, offer ing "Braves" sweatshirts and new hats for sale. Bonanza Antlers' school colors are black and red.

Post Office boosts city building

The construction of the new Alturas Post Office boosted building totals for the city in September to $436,339. The Post Office value is estimated at $417,808.

The city issued 19 building permits in September, with the majority, 11, for re-roofing.

The September total dwarfs August when the city issued 15 permits valued at $66,951 and July when only 11 permits were issued for $30,906.

Modoc County issued 24 building permits in September, with an estimated value of $343,626. One new home valued at about $140,000 accounted for the biggest portion of the per mits.

In August the county issued 27 permits valued at $569,695 and in July 20 permits worth $389,051.

County road boss resigns

Modoc County Road Commissioner/Public Works Director John Pedersen sub mitted a letter of resignation to Modoc County Tuesday dur ing the regular meeting of the Board of Supervisors.

Pedersen has held the posi tion for five years and is tak ing a position with an engi neer consulting firm in Redding. Supervisors were sorry to see Pedersen go, and will be looking for a replace ment in the near future.

Pedersen said he has en joyed his work in Modoc and felt it was a great honor to work for the county. He said he will miss Modoc, but is ex cited about the new opportuni ties before him.

Pedersen's last day of work will be November 7

CattleWomen give Roeser the honor

Modoc County CattleWomen named Rita Roeser as their 1997 CowBelle of the Year during their general membership and dinner meeting on Friday, October 3 at the Brass Rail, Alturas.

Sydney Flournoy, 1995 CowBelle recipient, made the surprise announcement. Roeser was presented with the traditional silver bowl, en graved with all the names of past CowBelles of the Year, along with her name. Roeser was also given a du plicate bowl and a lapel pin as keepsakes.

Anni Derner was the 1996 CowBelle of the Year.

California State CattleWomen's President Dee Lacey was an esteemed guest and did the honors of installing the new 1997-98 officers for the Modoc County CattleWomen. They are: President Lesa Dowdy; Vice-president Karen Littler; Secretary Kathie Alves; Treasurer, Denise Ginochio.

Record news summaries for Oct. 16, 1997 issue


New 530 area code takes effect Nov. 1
String of Post Office burglaries solved
El Nino means more rain in January?
Salvation Army needs your help
Toy gun gets students suspended
Alturas teacher hurt in auto accident

The forecast: Last week winter showed up and this week fall returns, as promised. Look for sunny to partly sunny days through Monday with highs in the 60s and lows in the 30s. Cooler by Sunday.

New 530 splits off from 916 area code on Nov. 1

The new 530 area code will begin serving most of the 25 counties, including Modoc, now served all or in part by the 916 area code on November 1.

The 530 area code is being created through a geographic split of the 916 area code ap proved by the Public Utilities Commission in August of 1996. The new 530 area code, which will become Californi a's 18th area code, is needed to meet the rapidly growing de mand for additional phone numbers being seen in the 916 area code and across the state. The explosive demand for high-technology is driving the demand for more phone num bers. Introduction of the new area code will not affect the price of phone calls.

A six-month "get-ac quainted" dialing pe riod will begin November 1 with the introduc tion of the 530 area code. During this period, peo ple calling from outside the area can dial either the old 916 or new 530 to reach cus tomers in the 530 area code. Also, for six months beginning November 1, customers in the 916 and 530 area codes can call between the two area codes using seven-digit dial ing.

The new 530 area code will serve cus tomers in all or por tions of 24 Northern Cali for nia Counties now served by the 916 area code. This in cludes 916 customers in the fol lowing counties: Nevada, Alpine, Yuba, Co lusa, Sierra, Butte, Glenn, Plumas, Tehama, Lassen, Shasta, Trinity, Modoc and Siskiyou counties. Several counties will be served by both the 916 and 530 area codes: Placer County (the southern portion stays 916, while the rest of the county goes to the 530), El Do rado County (most of the county goes to 530, while El Dorado Hills stays 916), Yolo County (the majority of the county goes to 530 but West Sacramento and some adja cent areas will remain 916) and Sutter County (all goes to 530 except the small Pleasant Grove area which remains 916). The new 530 will also serve customers in small portions of Mono, Solano, Mendocino, Lake and Hum boldt counties and a very small portion of Del Norte county.

The new 530 area code is projected to ac commodate the need for new phone numbers for 15 to 17 years while the re maining 916 area code is ex pected to last seven to eight years.

Doug Hescox, California-Nevada Code Administrator, said the introduction of the 530 will not affect the price of tele phone calls. "What is a local call now will remain a local call regardless of the area code change. Call distance and time determine the cost of a call, not whether or not you dial an area code," he said. He also said the area code's introduction will not affect customers' seven-digit phone numbers. "Only the area code portion of their phone number will change."

The six-month "get ac quainted" dialing period ends on May 16, 1998, after which callers will need to use the correct area code to com plete their calls. For three months af ter that, callers who forget to use the new 530 area code will receive a recorded message reminding them that the area code has changed, and they will be required to redial and use the proper area code. Known as the "manda tory" dialing period, the recorded reminder ends Au gust 15, 1998. After the mandatory period, there will be no recorded message.

Hescox said customers will have a six-month "get ac quainted" dialing period dur ing which both the 916 and new 530 area codes can be used. He said this period al lows cus tomers time to get used to the new area code and for other important changes. Some of those changes are:

Change stationery, business cards and advertis ing to reflect the new area code.
Notify friends, rela tives, business clients and customers of the new area code.
Reprogram speed di alers, auto di alers, alarms and PBX (private phone sys tems) to reflect the change (contact your equipment ven dor for assistance).
Reprogram outdial lists on personal computers that have numbers affected by the change.
Check with their wire less phone and paging service providers to see if repro gramming is required.

The new 530 area code is part of a series of new-style area codes introduced in North America beginning in 1995 that can be any three dig its from 220 to 999. This has special implications for cer tain types of telecommu nica tions equipment, which must be repro grammed to recognize the new style area codes, Hes cox said. "Historically, area codes always had either a '1' or '0' as the middle digit for identification purposes, but by 1995 all of those codes had been assigned. However, certain types of telecommuni ca tions equipment were built to look for that middle digit of '1' or '0' to process the call.

"Because of this, it's im por tant for cus tomers to know that PBX (private phone) sys tems, out-dialers, alarms and other telecommuni-cations equipment may have to be re programmed to recognize these new-style area codes in order for calls to com plete," said Hescox. People should check with their vendors to see if their equipment needs to be updated.

Closure near in long series of Post Office burglaries

Modoc County Sheriff Bruce Mix reports the daunting case of a year-lod other bur glaries may be coming to closure in the next few weeks.

Mix said there could be complaints issued on six individ uals in connection with the burglaries. None of those people under suspicion, said Mix, are Modoc County residents. Mix credits local deputies Mark Pearce and Barry Silva, who were key in assisting Federal Postal Inspectors in the inves tigation.

There were thousands of dollars worth of goods or dam ages in the burglaries. In many cases, the burglars broke through door locks or doors to gain entry.

The string of burglaries started with the August 1, 1996 burglary to the Lake City and Fort Bidwell Post Offices. On August 20, 1996 the burglars hit Napa Auto Parts, the Chevron Bulk Plant in Cedarville, the Eagleville Post Office and Post Offices in Gerlach and Empire, Nev.

Two days later Mix suspects the same group struck at the Adin Post Office, the Adin Transmission Shop and the Adin Century 21 Office.

On October 23, 1996, the Lake City and Ft. Bidwell Post Offices were hit again as well as the Tribal Office in Cedarville. There were also attempts to get into Surprise Valley Drug and Goldens.

On March 2, 1997, the burglars returned to hit the Lake City and Ft. Bidwell Post Offices. Later in the year they hit the Ford garage and Ed Staub plant in Lakeview.

In addition to the above burglaries, the group is suspected of burglaries to the Veterinary Clinic in Lakeview, the Tulelake Police Department and Department of Motor Vehicles, the Merrill Police Department, Merrill Feed Store, Nubieber Post Offices, and Post Offices in Oregon towns of Chemalt, Chiloquin, Beatty, O'Brien, Applegate, Gold Hill, Shady Cove, and Seneca. They also struck Mt. Vernon, Oregon, City Hall and a doctors office.

Mix said officers have recovered some of the stolen prop erty and he expects more to be recovered as the investigation comes to a close.

Uncertainty key to El Nino water impacts

The only thing certain about weather forecasts for this year's onslaught of El Nino, is that nothing is certain. The state is, nevertheless, asking people to be prepared for major weather conditions.

This last week an El Nino summit was held in Santa Monica and the state is issuing reams of documents warn ing residents to be prepared. Not a bad idea going into any winter.

According to some long-range forecasts, Modoc County could be a little warmer from January through March 1998 and could get as much as five to 10 inches more precipitation than normal.

Five to 10 inches of above normal precipitation for three months is serious for this area, since about 12 inches is the normal annual precipitation.

Weather forecasters are saying the current El Nino is stronger than usual and came months earlier than normal. They expect the weather patterns to be influenced by El Nino well into April next year, with impacts being felt heavily starting in December. Total rainfall in the state is predicted to be about double the yearly average.

El Nino is a weather sys tem that occurs every few years and warms the Pacific Ocean currents, creating different weather patterns. This year, weather experts are predicting a winter that could create the worst havoc since the winter of 1982-83, or it might even be worse.

For instance, in that winter of 1982-83, Modoc's winter was pretty normal, getting aver age precipitation in October, 1.84 inches; 1.55 inches in November and 1.44 inches in December. It mellowed out in January, 1983 as .61 inches fell and in February 1.96 inches was recorded. March was wet with 2.86 inches. Actually, the wet weather hit Modoc hard in late 1983 when 3.03 inches fell in November and 4.17 inches fell in December, well more than av erage and well more than the previous 20 years. In 1983, Alturas recorded 19.07 inches of moisture, the most since 1952 when 20.80 inches fell.

Weather service forecast ers are saying that El Nino is already impacting the south ern part of the state with warmer than normal tem peratures and with storms ex pected to be rough through this winter.

No matter the timing, Salvation Army is always there to help with local support

There's a way everyone can help the Salvation Army's quiet, but ever-pre sent work in Modoc County.

Whether it's through a do nation of time or money, ei ther will be appreciated and both are needed for the com ing holiday season.

Salvation Army funds in Modoc County are low at the present time, and the holi days are looming.

New and returning vol un teers are needed to help ring the Salvation Army's bell, this holiday season.

"The funds are so low this year, that every little bit helps. We're trying to put the red kettle out a little ear lier this season," explains Pauline Cravens, who is well aware of the needs, as Salvation Army treasurer for the past few years and as a Modoc County Social Services employee.

"Local folks don't always understand that every dime they donate in those ket tles, stays local and helps in many ways."

Modoc County Social Services Director Richard Belarde and 1997 coordina tor Pat Wood and Cravens work in conjunction with other agencies such as TEACH, Inc. to ensure that services and expenditures are not duplicated for those they help.

Last year, the local Salvation Army as sisted lo cal people, down on their luck, with their basic needs of shelter, food, or heat and others who were stranded in Modoc County, due to a breakdown in transporta tion, no funds to buy gas, to con tinue their journey.

Helping individuals and families, the local Salvation Army unit has spent $4,500 so far this year. No cash is ever given di rectly. Assistance is given in the form of vouchers which have to be used locally.

Cravens has just finished completing the annual report for the Del Oro Division of Salvation Army headquar ters in Sacramento.

"The Kettle Drive raised $1,000 in local contributions last year, all of which stays local," she noted. "Through checks and donations out side that kettle drive, we raised $1,500. Three hun dred dollars has been our al lotment every quarter from Sacramento. We're trying to make what's left really stretch, and we haven't come to the holidays yet."

Each year, the Salvation Army "manages to come up with just enough," said Cravens, to get simple holi day gifts for patients at Modoc Med and Surprise Valley Skilled Nursing Care facilities and shut-ins who are known about through the Adult Protective Services worker.

Calls from volunteers who are willing to take an hour to ring the bell, will be mu sic to Pat Wood's ears. Bell ringers may schedule an hour of their time between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. to help ring the Salvation Army's bell at the red kettle in Alturas Saturday, Nov. 22, before Thanksgiving and Saturday, Nov. 29. In December, kettle volunteers will be needed for an hour at a time every Friday and Saturday, through Dec. 20.

"Many of our faithful bell ringers have come from the local churches in the past," said Cravens. "We hope to draw on others who might be willing to do so this year. It's a good organization and also helps out with disaster relief when needed locally," de scribed Cravens.

All volunteers in Modoc communities outside Alturas, which are inter ested in taking part in a ket tle drive in their own com munities, are welcome to call for in formation and make arrangements with Pat Wood or Pauline Cravens by calling 233-6501 , as soon as possible.

Any donations not made through the kettle drive, and above $500, have 10 per cent taken out for Salvation Army head quarters.

Donations to "Salvation Army" are wel come and needed at any time of the year.

Donations may be made payable to "Salvation Army" and mailed to 120 North Main St., Alturas, CA 96101. For further information please call Pat Wood, (916) 233-6501.

Toy gun gets student suspended from school

An 11-year-old boy took a toy revolver to Modoc Middle School last Friday, and found out it wasn't acceptable behav ior.

Alturas Chief of Police Larry Pickett said the toy gun was discovered by school staff and his officers responded to the Middle School about 2 p.m. last Friday.

"It was a potentially dangerous situation, not to mention pretty stupid," said Pickett. "These students have to under stand that no guns or replicas of guns or knives are allowed at school."

According to Pickett, the student will be suspended from school.

Also on Friday, another student was caught with a knife at school and that knife was also confiscated.

Local teacher hurt in auto accident

Alturas Elementary School kindergarten teacher Joy Murphy is recovering at Redding Medical Center for in juries sustained in a single-vehicle accident Oct. 12, 6:25 p.m. on SR 299 east of Moose Camp Road, on Hatchet Mountain.

The California Highway Patrol reports Murphy was driv ing a 1991 Ford Probe east bound at about 60 m.p.h. when she said something ran in front of her in the shadows. She wasn't certain whether it was a deer, but swerved to the right and the back to the left. She lost control of the car and drove down an embankment on the south side of the road, with the vehicle coming to rest at the bottom of the embankment next to a creek.

Murphy was transported to Redding Medical Center by ambulance, and initially treated and released. She later returned to the hospital suffering from back pain and re mains hospitalized. She is listed in stable condition.

Record News summaries for Oct. 23, 1997 issue


Hospital gets good report from state
County gives an inch to local vendors
Time to take fall color tour
Library celebrates 50 years in spot
Modoc Livestock Market report

The forecast:Expect mostly sunny and breezy weather today with clearing Friday through Sunday. Expect highs in the mid-50s and 60s and lows into the freezing levels.

Hospital gets good report from stat

Back in August of 1996, the Modoc Medical Center (MMC) Skilled Nursing Facility re ceived a troubling report after a re-certifica tion investigat ing by the State Licensing Of fice.

The State found enough deficiencies to fill a 163 page re port and some of those defi cien cies dealt directly with sub standard patient care. Terms like "jeopardy" were used in that report, and not in reference to a game show.

Fourteen months later, things are differ ent. MMC Ad ministrator Woody Laugh-nan announced earlier this week that the State has in di cated that MMC's skilled Nurs ing Facility is doing much better after an inves ti gation con ducted in Septem ber, 1997.

Four investigators from the State Licens ing office in Chico showed up unan nounced in Alturas on September 22. They spent four days looking at records and facilities while also inter viewing patients and staff. They seemed to have liked what they found this time.

For one thing, they only had 20 pages of de ficiencies, or one-eighth of the 1996 re port. Laughnan emphasized that the most impor tant point is that none of the listed defi cien cies for this investigation had to do with sub standard patient care. Rather, Laugh nan said that for the most part the defi ciencies had to do with things like putting policies in writ ing, posting information and "improving the lifestyle and comfort of our residents."

Laughnan said he had spo ken with the head of the Chico office that conducted this sur vey and was told that MMC had looked good on the survey and there was every indi ca tion that the Skilled Nursing Fa cility would be re-certified.

"They complimented us on a very good survey," Laugh nan said. "We're really de lighted about that."

Who deserves credit for the turnaround? Laughnan said everyone who works at the fa cility and is connected with it. In fact, the MMC Board of Trustees threw a pizza party for the entire Skilled Nursing Facility staff to thank the em ployees for the good review.

Laughnan also gave credit to Joanne Kimball and Delinda Gover who were as signed to help the Skilled Nurs ing Facility improve on the deficiencies in the 1996 report. "They set a very strong course for making im provements," he said.

County seeks middle ground for local ven dors' preference

The Modoc County Board of Supervisors spent part of their Tuesday meeting consider ing the best way to balance two different goals. One is help ing to give government con tracts to local vendors. The other is to get the tax payers the most for their money.

They hope that both goals can be met under a proposed ordinance that would govern county purchases. Under the new system, lo cal vendors will get preference if they are within five percent of the low bid for a project. For example, if the low bid for a project is $10,000 - a local vendor with a bid of $10,500 would be awarded the contract.

That is obviously good for local business, but what about the situation where the amount of the low bid is $50,000? In that situation, the five percent rule would mean that a local vendor could get the contract with a bid of $525.000.

Therefore, the proposed or dinance would limit the pref erence for local vendors to ei ther five percent or $1,000, whichever is lower. Thus in the case of the $500,000 con tract, the local vendor could only get prefer ence with a bid of $501,000 or less.

The 1000 difference might not sound like a lot, but Ad ministrative Services Direc tor Mike Maxwell said his re view of past con tracts indicated that it would make a differ ence in some projects. He said the Board had to find a balance between helping local ven dors and saving the tax payers some money.

"You can't be giving away 10 to 15 thou sand dollars on a contract for a local ven dor," Maxwell said. "That's my personal view."

The proposed ordinance was only pre sented for a First Reading by the Board at Tuesday's meeting. It will be voted on at a future meeting.

In other matters before the Board on Tues day:

Road/Commissioner/Pub lic Works Di rector: John Pederson has announced that he will resign his positions as Director of Public Works and Road Commissioner on Novem ber 7. The County has decided that in adver tising for a replacement, Roads and Public Works will not be split apart as separate de partments. The Board will also appoint an interim director or direc tors for Roads and Public Works at the November 4 meeting.

Response to Grand Jury Report: Maxwell informed the Board that they are re quired by law to respond to the Grand Jury Report by Novem ber 7. Therefore, the response needs to be discussed at the November 4 meeting.

There would appear to be three options available to the Board. First, they could choose to make no response to the Report since the Grand Jury did not address any of it's recommendations specif ically to the Board. However, Maxwell pointed out that there were some recommendations directed to the County in gen eral and the Board would be the obvious body to respond to those recommenda tions. Therefore, the second option would be to respond to recom mendations made in the re port.

A third option would be to make a more general com mentary on not only the rec om mendations of the Grand Jury but also with regard to their findings, including the Grand Jury's evaluation of District Attorney Hugh Comisky.

Time to take the color tour

This weekend could be the peak of fall color in the Warner Mountains, ac cording to the Modoc National Forest and other local experts.

Trees in Alturas and other communities have changed their hues dramat ically over the past week as temperatures dropped and a trip through Surprise Valley and the Adin area is also well worth the time.

As far as the Warner Mountains, a trip along the South Warner Road from Parker Creek to Jess Valley would be exciting, with stops specially at Soup Springs and Mill Creek Meadows to view the aspen groves.

One of the very nice trips is from Likely through Jess Valley, up past Blue Lake and over to Eagleville. The Patterson Meadows area is one of the real jewels this time of the year.

Also don't forget to head north to Davis Creek and go along 395, including trips into Lassen Creek and north to New Pine Creek for the trip into Lily and Cave Lakes and on up to Dismal Swamp.

All roads in the forest are passable and open this year.

Wear red ribbon in drug free stance

Red Ribbon Week is Octo ber 23-31. The purpose of wearing or displaying red ribbons is to show commit ment to the creation of a drug-free community, with the message, "No use of illegal drugs, and no illegal use of le gal drugs!"

The red ribbon as a drug-free symbol be gan in 1985 when DEA agent Enrique Ca marena was murdered by drug dealers in Mexico.

Wearing a red ribbon is one way to take a public stand against drugs. People can make their own red ribbons, or pick one up at Modoc County Alcohol and Drug Services, 128 Hen derson St., for as long as supplies last. Rib bons will also be placed with some merchants for dis tribution.

Illegal drugs of particular concern in Modoc County in clude the use of metham phetamine (also called "crank," and "meth"), a pow erful, addictive stimulant, and marijuana ("pot" or "weed"), which can remain in the system affecting behav ior and judgment up to 30 days after use, even though the per son may no longer feel "high."

Alcohol and tobacco are drugs, too. Alco hol kills 100,000 people annually in the U.S., and tobacco kills over 40,000. Illegal use of these drugs by young people can damage fu ture development and lead to addiction much faster than with adults, be cause a young per son's physi cal and emotional makeup are not yet fully mature.

Contact Modoc County Al cohol and Drug Services at 233-6319 if help is needed for drug or alcohol abuse.

Library Celebrates 50 years on 3rd Street

The Modoc County Library is hosting an open house Oct. 25, to celebrate its 50 years of serving residents from the 212 West Third Street location in Alturas.

Festivities will start at 1 p.m. and go until 4 p.m. Guest speakers include: Betty Chism, retired Librarian; LaVon Coffin, who spear headed the successful Library District campaign; and Andy Anderson, former Modoc Supervisor.

Master of Ceremonies for the event is current Surprise Valley Supervisor Ben Zandstra. There will be sur prise readings, storytelling and histories, a photo exhibit, music, door prizes and re freshments.

Help for the event came from the Friends of the Modoc County Library, Modoc County Historical Society, Modoc County Museum, Modoc County Board of Supervisors, Great Basin Books, Black Rock Press and the University of Nevada Press.

The Library was moved to its current location on Oct. 25, 1947 and has remained here since.

The Library had a glorious start in Modoc. It started as a Women's Improvement Club Reading Room in 1906, and in 1908, Mrs. Anna Williams applied for a Carnegie Grant. The Library was established by Supervisors in 1916 and the Carnegie Library was built on Court Street across from the Court House in 1916. Mrs. Williams served as Librarian until 1936 and was replaced by Mrs. Peggy Gaskins. In 1940, the Librarian was Margaret Walkington who served until Edith Gannt took over in 1947. Barbara Gray Boyd was Librarian from 1949 to 1953 when Ruth Elvonger took the reins. Betty Malson (Chism) was appointed Librarian in 1956 and served in that posi tion until 1993 when she re tired and was replaced by cur rent Librarian Godelieve Uyttenhove.

Modoc Auction Yard report

The following report is from the Special Feeder sale held on Saturday, October 18.

Feeder Steers:

300-350 $67.00 to $77.00

351-400 $78.00 to $84.00

401-450 $74.00 to $86.25

451-500 $71.50 to $88.00

501-550 $72.00 to $85.85

551-600 $72.00 to $82.00

601-650 $70.00 to $76.25

651-700 $66.00 to $75.25

701-750 $62.00 to $72.50

751-800 $65.00 to $69.00

801-850 $65.50 to $67.00

851-900 $65.00 to $67.00

901-950 $58.00 to $67.25

Feeder Heifers:

350-400 $72.00 to $76.00

401-450 $68.00 to $70.00

451-500 $60.00 to $75.00

501-550 $64.50 to $75.25

551-600 $65.00 to $75.25

601-650 $68.00 to $70.00

651-700 $65.00 to $69.00

701-750 $65.00 to $70.00

751-800 $65.50


Cutters $20.00 to $34.50

Boners $26.00 to $36.00

Breakers $32.00 to $33.00

Hfts. $35.00 to $46.00


26 hd. at 451 $78.50

25 hd. at 556 $78.00

Slaughter Bulls: $33.00 to $42.00

Pairs: First calf, $525; balance $650 to $660.

Sales held every Saturday at 1 p.m.

Record news summaries for Oct. 30, 1997 issue


Modoc changes to 530 area code
Harrier jet makes emergency stop in Cedarville
Hay fire burns barn to ground
Pet Therapy really does work
All hands asked to help Food Bank
E-mail, FAX number directory underway

The forecast: Partly cloudy skies are in the offering for today and tonight with a 20-30 percent chance of precipitation tonight. Highs in the 60s today. Mostly cloudy Friday with the sun returning for the weekend and clouds back on Monday. Lows near 30.

Modoc changes to 530 area code November 1

Modoc County and several of its neighbors will be chang ing from the friendly 916 area code to 530 starting November 1. But take heart, the phone company is allowing a break-in period.

The area code for Citizens Communications customers in Adin, Alturas, Bella Vista, Bieber, Burney, Cedarville, Chester, Eagle Lake, Fall River Mills, Greenville, Herlong, Janesville, Keddie, Lake Almanor Penn, McCloud, Min eral, Montgomery Creek, Palo Cedro, Paynes Creek, Ravendale, Susanville, Lake Almanor, Westwood, Oakrun and Shingletown in the Alturas-Burney inter-mountain northern California area and Colusa County customers in Arbuckle, Colusa, Grimes, Maxwell, Princeton, Standish and Williams changes from 916 to 530 on November 1.

A six month transitional dialing period for customers as signed to the new 530 area code will begin November 1. Dur ing that time callers can dial either area code to reach their intended party.

On May 16, 1998, "mandatory dialing" will go into effect, and callers will receive a recording that asks them to re-dial, using the correct area code.

The new area code will not affect customer's seven-digit phone numbers as only the area code portion of their phone number will change. In some cases, customers may find they will need to dial 10 digits (the area code plus the seven-digit telephone number) if a portion of their local calling area is now outside the new area code boundaries. This will not result in any additional charges for the customer. The new area code also will not change 9-1-1 service, directory assistance or local service rates.

Military jet makes quick landing in Cedarville

A Marine Corps Harrier fighter jet made an emer gency landing Friday after noon at Surprise Valley Airport in Cedarville after losing its cockpit canopy at about 37,000 feet.

According to onlookers, the jet made a pass over the air port runway about 4:30 p.m. Friday. It then made a low altitude circle, came back and landed without problems on the airstrip.

The fighter was with three other jets on a routine flight from Fallon, Nevada to Whidby Island, Wa. when the accident occurred. Once the flight leader escorted Schaefer's plane down, he re joined the other jets and con tinued to Washington.

The pilot, Capt. Eric Schaefer, was cold and was rushed to Surprise Valley Medical Center for treatment. He has not seriously injured and was able to go back to his jet soon after tretament. A camper was placed out by the airplane and the pilot stayed with the aircraft until repair crews arrived by helicopter Saturday and Sunday to re pair the fighter jet. It was re paired and took off on Sunday afternoon.

Hay fire destroys barn

A Saturday morning fire at the Earl Nisly ranch just east of Alturas on County Road 56 destroyed a barn and about 50 to 75 tons of hay.

According to Allan Jacques, Alturas Rural Fire Department Chief, the fire exploded quickly and there was little any one could do but keep it from spreading.

Nisly's family saw a small fire and smoke at the barn and Nisly went over with a garden hose to extinguish the fire. As he was spraying water on the small portion of the fire, the entire barn just exploded and was immediately en gulfed in flames. It's fortunate, said Jacques, that Nisly was not hurt in the incident.

About 9:20 a.m. a small plume of smoke was visible from Alturas, but at 9:30 a.m. it looked like a bomb went off and smoke billowed high into the clear blue sky.

"We figure it was spontaneous combustion," said Jacques. "Hay does that at times and there really isn't much we can do about it except let it burn itself out and make sure the fire doesn't spread to other structures."

The Nisly children, Regina 16, and younger brother Matthew, stood quietly in the drive, watching the fire as the ARFD took action. The family had moved from Ohio to Modoc recently. They were preparing to leave Saturday morning on a family trip to Fortuna when Regina noticed the smoke.

The barn and hay were fully engulfed when the ARFD ar rived. "It was very hot and we just tried to keep it down," said Jacques, whose firemen were on the scene from about 9:30 a.m. until about 5:30 p.m. Jacques said the ARFD received a fire call for the same blaze about 1 a.m. the next morning.

"Hay burns hot and smolders for a long time," said Jacques. "We're just glad no one got hurt and no other structures were damaged."

The Nisly ranch is on Dorris Reservoir road and used to be the Adair Brown place.

Pet Therapy really does work

Residents are getting a new lease on life at Modoc Medical Center's Skilled Nursing Facility with the addition of pet therapy.

The Eden Alternative has inspired Activities Director Jeannette Duncan to promote pet therapy which is filling a need with residents. The up lift with the arrival of sev eral pets, can be seen in the smiles and hellos the resi dents share from the front door through the halls at the Alturas facility, which is home to 53 folks.

The time many folks would otherwise spend alone, is being spent with pets, such as birds, dogs, cats, and watching the calming fish. The project is proving to be therapeutic.

Last Friday morning was filled with excitement for the residents as Jeannette Dun can, Activities Director brought "home" an irre sistible and not quite six-week-old male puppy.

The puppy's looks are similar to a Cocker Spaniel, but he is a combination, black and white, Irish setter, beagle, and snauzer. He can now settle into his new digs at the nursing home, with no lack of attention or love from the residents. The residents will offer suggestions for his name and make a final de cision by voting on Nov. 3.

David Heinz, a resident and a dog groomer, wel comed the arrival of the puppy Friday morning, and went about the task of giving the puppy it's first bath, and gently drying and holding the pup. By personal choice, Heinz' actions had been more limited and he had been more reserved, noted Activity Director Jeannette Duncan. That was, until the puppy's arrival. He has taken interest in the pup and has been overseeing it. On Friday, he was carrying it in its basket down the hall, when Duncan requested he and the pup for a photo ses sion.

"I'm so pleased the hospi tal administration is will ing to let us work with pet therapy here," said Duncan. "There are a lot of benefits. It's really helping our resi dents; they seem happier and healthier and David is just one example."

The Eden Alternative was established by William Thomas, a Harvard grad and medical doctor and former medical director at the Chase Memorial Nurs ing Home in New Berlin, N.Y. The Eden Alternative evolved from his personal experience of caring for the plants and animals at his own home. Birds, singing in their cages, children visit ing, cats and dogs wander ing the halls, and rabbits in hutches - keeping in close contact with living things that would make a differ ence, all made sense to him in a nursing home atmo sphere. He set about to make it so, and received grant money and New York waived a regulation about animals.

That was 1991, and the 'experiment' has been a "wonderful success in cut ting the hospital's pharmacy bills in half, slashed the in fection rate by 50 percent, re duced mortality by 25 per cent. And to everyone's sur prise, staff turnover, always high in nursing homes, dropped by more than a quarter despite the extra work."

After four years, Dr. Thomas set out to introduce the Eden Alternative in neighboring areas and now nearly 200 nursing homes in the United States have begun Edenizing their facilities.

Thomas says he believes that the great enemies of the elderly are loneliness, bore dom and above all, feeling unneeded.

While strolling down the hallway to the nurses sta tion, a pet bird named Jon, about seven years old, calmly rode on her finger, Duncan asked a resident, seated in a wheelchair, if she wouldn't mind holding the bird for a few minutes. Hap pily, the woman accepted and her finger became a new perch for the bird. She moved her face closer to the bird and began quietly conversing with the bird, which was making low chirp sounds in return.

On a daily basis at the Alturas facility, residents Tom Duncan and Keith Jacques check with the kitchen staff for any left over bread which they use to feed the sparrows and other wild birds who come to the edge of the front lawn area.

With a view on the world and the activity of the front parking lot, visible from the activity room's large win dows, other residents often sit and watch the birds from their wheelchairs.

Ruth Cartner's family has set out several hanging bird feeders outside her room window. She can enjoy them from her room, and other residents whose windows are adjacent, are enjoying them as well.

The young parakeet "Charlie" found a new home two months ago when family members brought the pet to Lillian Jones. She is pleased with her new roommate.

Bessie Baty's dog visits her weekly, but she also en joys getting to know the resi dent bird. Dorothy Cervan tes' two poodles are brought in for visits and Reba Blakely enjoys the company of the independent cats, who show up at her room when they're hungry and know they will be fed.

On occasion, hospital em ployee Carol Hewitt has been known to bring animals from her ranch, including a small pot bellied pig that was a big hit with the residents, last week and llamas.

"Pets make this feel more like home for the residents," shares Duncan.

Interior decorating has added a pleasant touch to the place many call home. Dun can has taken to stenciling a delicate floral design over each resident's door and will soon be stenciling ivy as wall accents near the nurses station. It's the added touches, the absence of the typical 'nursing home smell' and the sincere care and time she gives to the res idents, that is also making a difference in their lives. Duncan cares very much about the wellness of her res idents and offers that this new pet therapy project is "just beginning."

All hands asked to help with Food Bank holiday supplies

November 1 is the first day of the holiday season and Modoc Emergency Food Bank will be organizing its annual food drive.

Church congregations, school students and scouts are participating to make sure everyone in Modoc has a happy holiday.

Donations of non-perish able food items will be will ingly accepted Monday through Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. at the TEACH, Inc. of fice at 112 East Second St., Alturas.

Peggy Alexander, new Food Bank coordinator, wel comes anyone interested in helping in the form of dona tion or volunteer labor, to contact her at the Food Bank Wednesday, Thursday or Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 12:00 noon or call her at the TEACH, Inc. office at 233-3111.

"We're gearing toward Thanksgiving as of Novem ber 1," said Alexander. Thanksgiving food boxes will be pulled together with donations and food bank supplies.

Alexander is encourag ing Alturas Elementary stu dents to bring all non-per ishable food items, to their classrooms from November 3-14. All donations will go into the Emergency Food Bank. TEACH will sponsor an ice cream party for the classroom which has the most donated food items dur ing the food drive.

Directory of e-mail, FAX numbers now underway

Modoc County Probation Officer Smith Pineo is out to put together a directory of e-mail and FAX numbers for county departments, businesses or agencies who do busi ness in or with Modoc County.

He asks that people provide him with those e-mail ad dresses or FAX numbers. The information will be com piled into a directory of addresses and FAX numbers that will be distributed to county departments as well as local agencies and businesses.

Send or FAX the information to Pineo at 120-A South Main Street, Alturas, 96101 or FAX it to 233-6363. The in formation may also be sent via e-mail to spineo@hdo.net. For more information, call Pineo at 233-6322.


Record News summaries for Nov. 6, 1997 issue


Health Director gets board direction
Bomb explodes on football sled
Building remains good for October
Grazing bill may add stability
New Post Office opens doors Monday
Remember Veterans Day
Record has Holiday schedule

Health Director gets direc tion from Board

There was no dinner for the Modoc County Board of Su pervisors on Tuesday. There meeting ran until after 8 p.m. as they considered the fate of the County's Director of the Public Health Department.

Employees of the Health Department made accusa tions against Director Judi Johnson through their public employees union. The union sent a letter to the County out lining 19 allegations, mostly against Johnson. The allega tions ranged from unlawful practices regarding various forms of compensation and scheduling, to improprieties regarding patient right, to serving alcohol during work hours, to comments that might be interpreted as sexual ha rassment to uttering a racial epithet.

The County then hired the firm of Nickolaus and Haef to investigate the allegations. They interviewed seven Health Department employees and concluded that Johnson had engaged in a "clear and consistent pattern of inappro priate behavior" while also violating County policies and the Federal Fair Labor Stan dards Act.

The Board of Supervisors scheduled a closed session meeting to consider disci pline or dismissal for John son. When the time for that meeting was reached, John son requested that the Board hold the meeting in open ses sion. The Board consented and Johnson offered her de fense.

She addressed each of the allegations and offered her side of the story for each of them. For some she offered explanations of her actions. For others she stated that the allegations were untrue and offered her own proof of what happened. For two of the alle gations, using a racist term and making derogatory comments about an employ ee's wife, she could only offer her apology.

Johnson also put forward a list of "good" things she had done to help Health Depart ment employees.

Throughout her presenta tion, Johnson had a theme that some employees might be hav ing a hard time adjusting to the level of work she is asking for.

"I believe strongly in re sponsibility and accountabil ity to the taxpayers who pay our salaries," she told the Board. "I believe that all Modoc County employees should truly work during their assigned hours."

She later added, "I have some outstanding employees; it is clear now that some may never be happy with me. I may further be perceived that they may not be happy with anyone."

After further debate and questioning of Johnson, the Board adjourned to closed session to consider the matter. After more than an hour in closed session, they came back and voted 3-2 to keep Johnson in her job - with cer tain conditions.

Board Chairman Dr. Ben Zandstra voted in the major ity along with Supervisors Nancy Huffman and Pat Cantrall. Dissenting votes were cast by Joe Colt and Ron McIntyre.

Zandstra, in comments made on Wednesday morn ing, said he felt that Colt and McIntyre took the position they did because they "wanted to underline the absolute seri ousness" of the matter and let Johnson know that "strong corrective measures need to be taken."

Zandstra said the majority position was quite similar.

"We wanted to make as strong a statement as possible without terminating her," he said.

To keep her position, John son will be required to write an apology to the employees who made the allegations. She will also be receiving a directive prepared by Director of Administration Mike Maxwell and County Counsel Hugh Comisky. She will be expected to have a great deal of contact with Maxwell and Comisky to insure that her actions comply with County policies and procedures as well as with State and Federal laws.

"She's made some mis takes, but they are solvable from my point of view," Zandstra said. "A lot of it was well intentioned on her part, but I don't know whether it was well thought out."

The Board was faced with a mountain of papers listing al legations and defenses and Zandstra said he didn't feel that it would be productive to go through all of them to try to figure out who was right or wrong.

"It would be handy if I were God and could tell who is telling the truth," he said. "I'm not sure it's in the public interest to spend time sorting this out. anything that de tracts from delivering ser vices to the public is a problem in my book. I don't want to have a parade of everybody coming in front of us."

While Zandstra felt that some of the allegations were "very serious," particularly those dealing with a hostile work environment, he saw others as "real petty" and said that all public employees have to realize that they will face criticism that they must sim ply learn to deal with.

"As a member of the Board of Supervisors, I get chewed out with great regularity. It's something you have to brush off and you go on and do your job."

After the Board meeting Johnson said she is hoping things can go better in the fu ture with her employees.

"I have no animosity to wards them," she said. "I feel badly that they misunderstood my actions."

She also stated, "I feel I'm paying for lot of sins that oc curred before I got here."

Bomb explodes on football sled

A homemade bomb ex ploded in a football blocking sled at the Modoc High School practice field Saturday night, causing minor damages, but no injuries.

According to Alturas Chief of Police Larry Pickett, the bomb exploded about 9:20 p.m. and was described as about as loud as a gunshot. The bomb did cause a fire to the vinyl pads on the sled and the Alturas Fire Department re sponded. The field was not in use at the time.

Pickett said firemen re covered pieces of the bomb that exploded as well as another bomb which had fizzled out be fore exploding. The one ex plosive went off in the sled base while the other was found on the grass nearby.

Pickett said the unexploded bomb, which appeared to be made with black powder, cardboard, duct tape and a fuse, was intact and has been sent to the lab for fingerprint and other analysis.

The Herlong Bomb Squad did investigate the scene and the explosive. Pickett said the investigation s continuing and the unexploded bomb gives the investigation a real break.

Building remains good for October

Building in October re mained constant as the city issued 25 permits worth an estimated value of $75,233. That's down dramatically from September's building total of $436,339, but $417,808 of that total was the new Alturas Post Office.

Of the October permits, 11 were for re-roofing, four were for Monitor stove installa tions, others were for remod eling, vinyl siding and win dow installation as well as porch additions.

The city collected $1,201.93 in fees.

Grazing bill may add stability

While a new public land livestock graz ing bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives increases the permit fee, it may add some stability for ranchers in Modoc and throughout the west.

According to U.S. Representative Wally Herger, the bill is good for family ranchers who graze livestock on public lands.

The House voted last week to send the measure to the Senate, where it may meet some opposition.

Under the new bill, the current $1.35 per animal unit month, AUM, would increase an average of 20 cents. An AUM is defined as the forage consumed by a cow and calf or seven goats or sheep in a month. Proponents of the bill argue that increased fees will raise more funds, and will help give ranchers more economic stability and fewer govern ment restrictions and red tape.

Critics of the bill argue it maintains a "taxpayer subsidy" for livestock foraging that is harmful to the public lands in the west. The fee increase would raise a projected $6 million in new revenue over four years, but would not offset the costs of managing the land, resulting in a subsidy estimated at $25 million to $50 million.

The new bill is aimed at making range management decisions more scientifically based and will remove a section that gave ranchers effective control of local councils that make grazing policy recommendations. That change is supposed to increase the focus on science and improve cooperation between government agencies, environmentalists and ranchers.

Alturas Post Office doors open on the new building for Monday's deliveries

The Alturas Post Office will close out the old and start with the new, Monday morning, Nov. 10.

Alturas Postmaster John Hammersmark will unlock the doors at 7:30 a.m. on Mon day, to begin serving customers from the new Alturas Post Office building located at 240 North Main Street, across from the old post office site.

"We're excited and look ing forward to being in the new place and we will be serving customers there next week," said Hammersmark Tuesday morn ing.

The open house will have to wait a few weeks, now that the mail busi ness is moving quickly into its holiday load. An open house with re fresh ments is being planned in a few weeks, and before Christmas, to allow every one to see the new facility.

The Post Office will be making its move on the weekend.

"This Monday's just too busy to hold an open house. We want to provide our cus tomers with service first, then we'll get ready for the Open House," said Ham mersmark.

Post Office boxholders are asked to pick up their fi nal delivery of mail at the old post office, anytime after 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 8, to ensure they receive Saturday's mail deliveries. Box holders are then asked to deposit the old box keys within their old box for the last time that same day.

Any mail not picked up from the old site on Satur day, will be taken over to the new Post Office for delivery on Monday. The doors to the old P.O. build ing will be locked for the final time on Monday at midnight.

Mail will be delivered at the new Post Office on Mon day.

Hammers mark encour ages customers to start at the new lobby window and work their way through to locate their mail boxes. "It's a modern design, and differ ent from the old box set-up."

Post Offices will observe Veterans' Day on Tuesday, Nov. 11. with no mail deliv ery or customer service.

Remember what Veterans' Day is all about . . . a time to thank veterans for freedoms

Veterans' Day services on Tuesday, November 11 at 11:00 a.m. will honor and thank all living men and women vet erans who have served their country.

A special ceremony, offi ciated by the Disabled Ameri can Veterans Chapter 113, will recognize all veterans or ganiza tions and welcome the public to the Veterans' Memo rial Hall, 500 So. Main St., Alturas.

"We hope all citizens will observe Veterans Day by hon oring the men and women who have served their country in uniform," said Tiny Swisher, D.A.V. Comman der, Al turas.

Guest speaker Modoc District Attorney Hugh Comisky and soloists will be included in the program. An F-16 jet fly-over has been re quested for 12:00 noon from the Kingsley Air Field to pass over Alturas.

Surprise Valley Veterans of Foreign Wars 7888 and Aux iliary will host a special program at the VFW Hall in Cedarville. The public is in vited to attend the ceremony that will start at 11:00 a.m. Nov. 11. Cedarville's Brownie Troop, 4-H Club, Boy Scout Troop #48, and the Ea gleville 4-H Club and will help the veterans with the flag raising and special music.

Displays of war mementos from the Civil War through the Vietnam campaign will be shown. Refreshments will be served.

Record holiday schedules

The Modoc County Record will be open for business as usual on Tuesday, Nov. 11, Veterans' Day.

During Thanksgiving week, the Record will be pub lished on Wednesday, Nov. 26, to allow our employees and their families to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday, Nov. 27, when the office will be closed.

All news items, advertising including legal, display and classified, will be due in the office by 12:00 noon on Tuesday, Nov. 25 for publication in the Thanksgiving is sue.

The Record will be delivered to the U.S. Post Office and area stores on Wednesday, Nov. 26.

The Record office will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 27 and Friday, Nov. 28.

Record news summaries for Nov. 13, 1997


Vandals hit I'SOT community displays
Library funding future is eye opener
Holiday recipe book in the works
Want to give up smoking habit?
ACT pesents 'The Butler Did It"

The forecast: Look for mostly cloudy to day with occasional rain. Lows in the 20s and 30s and possible snow showers Friday. It looks like an un settled weekend with lows in the high 20s.

I'SOT community display vandalized

No sooner had the I'SOT community finished putting up their annual life-sized Thanksgiving scenes, last Sat urday, than one of the more expensive and hand cast mannequins was stolen in the night.

"We have the mannequin back now, but it is very dam aged. It was one of the nicer ones and was cast by the I' SOTs," said Beth Mann, I' SOT scene coordinator for the holiday project.

The moveable parts of the mannequin's head and arms were "very damaged." That damage is estimated at $550.

Four scenes have been created, with another two scenes to be set up this com ing Saturday. Prior to Christmas, the Nativity scene will be added, making the total of 11 scenes in all, that line the small town of Canby on Highway 299. Motorists are able to view the scenes as they pass through town, or can park and get a closer look at the holiday theme scenes.

"It is our gift to the com munity each year and something we want the community and motorists to enjoy. This act of vandal ism has not just stolen from the I'SOTs, but robbed the com munity which benefits from the enjoyment in see ing the scenes," said Mann.

"We are not going to stand for the scenes being vandalized and will press charges, and have made a report to the Sheriff's office. We plan to prosecute this time and if it happens again," explained Mann.

It's not the first time such acts of vandalism have oc curred, but the I'SOT com munity has endured over the years and didn't report sev eral smaller acts of vandal ism to their scenes. In the past mannequin parts have been dismembered or dis robed or beer cans placed in their hands.

"They were small and petty vandalism acts com pared to this most recent one," said Mann. "We will discourage such acts now and in the future."

Look at Library future funding is eyeopener

It's amazing how quickly milestones can sneak up on you. For example, would you be shocked to learn that it's been nearly 10 years since two-thirds of Modoc County voted in favor of a property tax to fund our Modoc County Li brary system?

Believe it or not, it was clear back in 1988 that the cur rent library funding system came into place. Thus, it's not a bad time to look at where the Library is now and where it is going in the future.

We've almost gone through 10 years with this system," County Librarian Godelieve Uyttenhove said. "It's time to reassess and plan through the next 10."

Looking at the financial picture for the Library, it seems that some changes might be needed to continue the present level of services through the next 10 years. Uyttenhove emphasizes that their is no present crisis that calls for drastic action. That's precisely the reason to start looking for new solutions now.

"If we do some minor ad justments now, we won't have to do anything drastic in ten years," she said.

Various financial projec tions show that Library ex penses are rising due to infla tion, while revenue is staying pretty constant at around $286,000 per year because the tax rate was set in the 1988 vote at the level of $18 per landowner. The projections indi cate that at some point in the next two years, expenses will outpace revenues. At that point, the Library system would have to start dipping into it's Reserve Fund.

The Library Reserve Fund may well be the most misun derstood account in Modoc County. The myth has developed that it is an over whelming amount when in fact it is only around $300,000 - or just enough to fund the Li brary for one year.

New financial projections also show that while the Li brary would just draw on the interest the Reserve Fund generates until around 2001, after that, the Library would have to draw on the actual capital of the Reserve Fund. Once that process begins, the fund would be cut in half by 2008 and would completely run out somewhere around 2011.

For example, think of an individual who has an inter est bearing savings account that has been built up to $1,000. If that person were to begin withdrawing $50 per month from that account to meet their regular expenses, the account would be drained in less than two years.

The reserve fund is also not as large as was originally projected for several reasons. First, the Library went to an automated system in 1991. This unexpectedly raised ex penses dramatically during that time period. Therefore, less money was being put into the Reserve Fund and it was growing at a slower rate.

Second, prior to 1993, half of the Librarian's salary was paid by the County Office of Education. That is no longer the case. That adds to Library expenses, which in turn means that there is less money going into the reserve fund.

Another problem is that back in 1988, it was projected that the fund would grow at a rate of about 7.5 percent per year while in the bank. In 1988, that seemed like a safe bet since interest rates were above 10 percent and the stock market was still recovering from its drastic drop of Octo ber, 1987. However, in 1997, we have a stock market where the Dow has shot up to 8,000 and interest rates are as low as they have been in a genera tion. Therefore, the Reserve Fund is currently only get ting a 4.5 percent growth rate. It would seem that Alan Greenspan can even have an effect on the Modoc County Li brary.

Uyttenhove points out that the Library is already mak ing cuts to try to keep expenses down. For example, the bud get dropped by $17,205 between fiscal year 1992/93 and fiscal year 1993/94. The new book budget was slashed by $10,000 that year.

What are the options before 2011? One way to correct the problem would be to go to the voters again and ask for a slight increase in the Mello-Roos property tax that they voted in back in 1988 or some sort of a sale tax targeted for the library.

Another option would be for the County to make up the shortfall out of its funds. But again, the financial projec tions show that could mean as much as $200,000 by 2013 and over $500,000 by the year 2016.

Some have suggested charging a fee for a library card - which approximately half of all Modoc County resi dents currently hold.

However, this could be counter-productive because the California Library Ser vices Act disqualifies any public library from participat ing in State grants and pro grams if it charges a fee for a library card.

The final option of course, is to cut services either through cutting staff, reduc ing hours, closing branches or just not buying new books. However, Uyttenhove points out that in 1988, the voters were promised a "full-service li brary system" and mainte nance of "existing services."

Uyttenhove also points out that, while letting Library services be cut may be finan cially welcome in the short run, it may ultimately hurt the Modoc economy in the long run. She claims that she gets phone calls and e-mail from people and businesses thinking about relocating to Modoc County. The presence of a good public library seems to often be one of their criteria for making such a move.

Holiday recipe book now in the making

The first Annual Modoc Holiday Recipe Book is now in the making and will be on the streets December 18, in time for Christmas.

The recipe book will be in tabloid form as an insert into the Modoc County Record. It's being sponsored by the Modoc County Tobacco Education and Cessation Program.

Recipes need to be turned into the Modoc County Record between now and December 4 for inclusion. Please in clude all relevant information and participants may chose to include the family name on the recipe. Recipes of all sorts are invited, main courses, appetizers, salads, desserts and drink. The recipes may be typewritten or handwritten as long as they are legible.

Favorite family recipes are a real treasure and having them compiled for the entire community to enjoy will be very special.

For more information please contact the Record at 233-2632 or Karen Kahusi at 233-6311.

Sign a contract to quit smoking habit

The Great American Smokeout is November 20 and it's a good time to begin the steps to quitting.

Anyone who wants to quit smoking has help in the Modoc County with the Modoc County Tobacco Education and Cessation Program. For the Great American Smokeout, the program is sponsoring a gear exchange for those folks who want to kick the habit.

Program Coordinator Karen Kahusi said the pro gram will be offering t-shirts, mugs, infant t-shirts, base ball caps, footballs, and other items to anyone who brings in their cigarettes, tosses them and signs a contract to quit. And the program will be as sisting with counseling, work groups and the like to help smokers beat the smoking habit.

The program table will be set up on the Great American Smokeout day at the Modoc County Courthouse in Alturas November 20 from 1:30 p.m. until 4 p.m. The gear will be distributed while supplies last.

"We're really interested in helping people who want to stop smoking and our pro grams are successful," said Kahusi this week. "If some one is thinking about quit ting, this is a great time to stop. There is plenty of sup port."

The first national Great American Smokeout was held on the third Thursday in November, 1977. The American Cancer Society is the sponsor of the event.

Two individuals, Lori and Christine Wheeler, Alturas, who have gone through the no smoking program in Modoc agree that it's very valuable.

"The class was very help ful and people need the support to quit," said Lori. "You also have to have a good reason to quit. The class helps set up a real good support group and you have someone to call if you need help."

For Lori those reasons to quit were her health and her children's health. She said she feels much better since giv ing up the pack-a-day habit.

Christine said she quit be cause of her health, her chil dren, the expense and even down to the smoker's smell it created.

"In just two or three days I could take a deep breath," Christine said. "I feel much better, don't cough nearly as much and have more en ergy."

Since quitting, both agree their lifestyles and their chil dren are much better off. Lori pointed out that she no longer can ignore the smell from cigarette smoke that perme ates most everything.

"You know, you can sit in the living room with a beam of light and see the smoke just one puff puts out, surrounding your kids," said Christine. "It just amazes you how much smoke one cigarette must put out. My kids, and Lori's kids are much happier since we quit."

A support group is not the only thing needed, a big part of that has to be family sup port. Lori's husband is also quitting and Christine's is now taking his cigarettes out side.

"The saying that you're just a puff away from a pack a day is really true," said Lori. "It's is difficult to quit, and you have to really commit to quitting."

The Smokeout has helped millions of Americans quit smoking. "If you can quit for one day, you're that much closer to quit ting for good," the Society points out. "Join this year's Smokeout and commit to a healthy, smoke-free envi ronment."

"The Butler Did It" opens tonight at A.C.T.

The excitement is build ing for the cast and crew of The Butler Did It. Modoc Perform ing Arts Theater will open the play at the A.C. T. Niles Theater in Alturas tonight, November 13 at 8 p.m.

Director Sandy Boldon, says, "All we need now is our audi ence."

The story revolves around a Broadway theater company which is in the final days be fore the opening of their mur der mystery. Their director, Tony (Chip Massie), is des perate that this play be a hit, since his career and finan cial well-being are riding on it. His cast includes an aging ingenue (Terri Jacobson) who is also desperate to revive her career; a washed-up televi sion star (Larry Shippen) who can never remember his lines; a sexy Italian actor (Gerry Gates), and a beauti ful young actress fresh from drama school (Karen Hays). None of the cast knows how Tony's play will end, nor have they met the fifth cast member, Sam (Craig Flournoy), who plays the de tective in the last scene. As opening night draws near, se cret pasts and hidden in trigues are revealed, and the very success of the play is threatened. Most of the actors have their own idea about how the play can be fixed, and at least one has an idea that is very, very permanent.

The Butler Did It runs all weekend. Thursday, Friday and Satur day performances begin at 8 p.m. and Sunday's perfor mances is a 2:00 p.m. matinee.

Ticket prices are $6 for adults and $4 for students and se niors. Tickets may be pur chased in advance in Sur prise Valley Drug, Pizza and Pasta Place, and at the theater box office. This performance is sponsored by the Modoc County Tobacco Coalition and is a tobacco-free event.

Record News summaries for Nov. 11, 1997 issue


Byrne is named Cattleman of Year
Reno company acquires High Grade
Modoc Holiday recipe book in the making
Post Office hosts open house Nov. 26
FFA students learn from national confab
Make a wish tree promise for a kid

The forecast: Look for partly cloudy skies today with mostly cloudy returning Friday and rain and showers projected through Monday. Highs in the upper 40s and lows to the upper 20s.

Byrne is Cattleman of the Year

The Modoc County Cattlemen's Association has named Tulelake rancher Dan Byrne as its 1997 Cattleman of the Year. He was presented the award and silver buckle at the MCCA's annual dinner Friday night.

Byrne is a well-respected third generation rancher in Modoc, and is known as a low-profile problem solver who seeks practical solutions.

Byrne has been a long-time county director and two-term county president, a member and past member of the public lands committee, helped form and chairs a state-wide graz ing strategy group that has improved communication between the Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and permittees. He has represented Modoc agri culture at the local, state and national levels.

Byrne believes that work ing within the system is the best way to accomplish change.

With his partner, he has operated an economically vi able, public-range-dependent cow/calf operation that com plements endangered species, improves water quality and recovers riparian areas. An ambitious plan of increased herding, salting and a signif icant investment in fencing has been implemented. An innovative combination of changing seasons of use and integrating private-land meadows with public land ranges has produced results that are showcased to agency and industry people alike.

Extensive and often frus trating collaborative plan ning with many private groups and public agencies has produced a mix of fund ing that has resulted in solar-powered wells, miles of ripar ian pasture fencing and cattle guards to improve cattle dis tribution away from riparian areas.

Combined with Byrne's stewardship, the cow herd has been computerized. The calf weaning percentage is up 14 percent and the weaning weights have increased by one third.

The Commanche Riders, of Chico, presented the MCCA a check for $500 Friday night to assist the organization in the public land issues leadership.

Reno company acquires High Grade mines

A Reno, Nevada company, Golden Phoenix, has acquired the historic High Grade mining area from Kennecott Exploration Company.

According to U.S. Forest Service Information Officer Nancy Gardner, there has been activity in the High Grade area by Golden Phoenix this year and the company is plan ning further exploration when the snow melts next spring. The company has not yet submitted an operating plan to the U.S. Forest Service.

High Grade district is located in the Warner Mountains about 30 miles northeast of Alturas. The town of High Grade had its hey day in 1913 but was completely gone in the early 1920s when the gold reserves were thought to be depleted. According to records, at the peak of its mining boom, there were more than 70 mines in the area, employing several hundred men.

It's been decades since any serious mining has been done in the area.

According to a report in the October issue of The Mining Record, the objective of Golden Phoenix is to "increase the existing gold resource to develop a bulk mineable multi-million-ounce gold reserve. Investigation of geology, structure, alteration and mineralization indicates that many favorable targets remain untested; and therefore, the property has an excellent potential to develop a large mine able reserve."

Golden Phoenix officials did not return phone calls this week, but hopefully more information will be available in the near future.

Get recipes in quick for the Holiday book

Recipes are coming in quickly for the first Modoc Holiday Recipe book, set to come out in the Modoc Record on December 18 in time for Christmas goodies.

The recipe book will be in tabloid form as an insert into the Modoc County Record. It's being sponsored by the Modoc County Tobacco Education and Cessation Program.

Recipes need to be turned into the Modoc County Record between now and December 4 for inclusion. Please in clude all relevant information and participants may chose to include the family name on the recipe. Recipes of all sorts are invited: main courses, appetizers, salads, desserts and drinks. The recipes may be typewritten or handwritten as long as they are legible.

And remember, says the Toabcco Coalition, food tastes much better if its served in a smokefree environment.

For more information please contact the Record at 233-2632 or Karen Kahusi at 233-6311.

National FFA Convention wows MHS travelers

"The total experience of just being around 43,000 peo ple in one place, and the amount of energy there," was memorable to Mike Kraft, as he described the Nov. 12-15 National FFA Convention in Kansas City, Missouri last week.

Kraft, Alturas FFA Advi sor and Modoc High teacher, and Alturas FFA students Jennifer Le Neave, Vice President for Alturas FFA and Ray Anklin, FFA Pres ident, re turned over the weekend travel worn, but exhilarated from attending the National Convention.

Ag Boosters assisted in selecting and making the FFA students trips possible.

It was the first time in four years that students from Modoc High attended. If Kraft can arrange it, he wants to make sure more students in the future will have the opportunity. It was his first time to National, as well as LeNeave's and Anklin's.

"I remember when my sister went to the convention and we picked her up in San Francisco. She kept saying what a wonderful time she had," recalled Jennifer looking in retrospect, when her older sister attended National from Modoc High.

The Alturas trio met their flight in San Francisco Nov. 12. Anywhere from 600-700 FFA students flew from Cal ifornia with the FFA state organized trip. Next year, Kraft hopes to organize with Herlong and Lassen FFA chapters for a flight from Reno.

Next year's 71st National Convention, will be the final one held in Kansas City, Missouri before moving to Louisville, Kentucky in 1999. The convention has grown too large to be held at the existing convention center in Kansas City.

"The last one should be something special," said Kraft. "Kansas City has hosted the National Conven tion since 1928. The city goes out of its way to have kids there and treats everyone well. I'm sure they'll be working to get them back again."

Even a Continental flight attendant sported his own "retro" FFA jacket, embroi dered with the date "1955," over his uniform, for his FFA customers.

Top keynote speakers, leadership training, a ca reer fair, the American Royal Center Livestock Show, the fifth largest in the United States, the American Royal Rodeo, recruiters from colleges and universi ties and employers from all over the U.S. and Puerto Rico were there to make contacts with the students.

"The caliber of presenta tions was phenomenal," de scribed Kraft. Speakers in cluded Ted Waite, CEO of Gateway 2000; actor Edward James Olmos of "Stand and Deliver" fame addressed "Ethnic Diversity;" Ron Archer, who trains compa nies in organizational lead ership "all over the world," Miss America 1995, and country western entertainer Ty England, were a few of the highlights.

Staying with the Alturas group in the Kansas City Crown Plaza Hotel were a host of FFA students from New Mexico, Georgia, Illi nois, and more. The young people had an opportunity to meet and visit with one an other in between the planned activities at the center's hub, located three miles from the hotel.

"Even the guy who drove us to the convention center, told us about the city along the way," recalled LeNeave, a Modoc High junior. "One apartment complex our driver pointed out to us, on the way to the center, was the one they used in the film Ghostbusters. Talking with people and getting to know where they were from and what their town or school was like, was really fun."

"I enjoyed meeting all the people and attending the rodeo and the sessions," shared Anklin. Among the 43,883 people attending from all over the U.S., Anklin admitted he appreciated see ing Miss High School Rodeo and Miss All American Rodeo royalty.

"The American Royal is the top livestock show in the country," described Kraft. "The quality of animals - well, you just don't see that kind of quality anywhere else."

Amid the crowds, Kraft ran into former Modoc High Ag teacher Scott Towery and his students from Turner, Ore. and saw some students in Lakeview jackets, but was too far away with the crowds in the way, to reach them.

Their flight took in Kansas City, Kansas, Houston, Texas and San Francisco airports. "The lights of Houston, went as far as you could see, it seemed," described Le Neave.

"We were all jazzed," said Kraft. LeNeave and Anklin will be speaking and sharing some of their Convention experiences with other students in the coming months.

1997 Christmas Wish Tree window of opportunity opens

The 1997 Christmas Wish Tree is a community project for children infant to 12 years old who reside in Modoc County.

It is through the goodness and generosity of the com munity and others who care, that children's wishes be come possible, when times are financially too rough for parents to provide Christmas gifts for their young chil dren.

Parents or guardians who wish to have their children participate in the Wish Tree can determine their eligi bility at the T.E.A.C.H., Inc. Office, 112 East Second St., Alturas. After eligibility has been determined, a tag-ornament will be completed with the child's age, gender, clothing size and wish. All tags are numbered in order to keep the child's identity confidential. Wishes are limited to no more than $30.

Registration is open from Monday, November 24, 1997 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. only for the first 250 indi viduals. Remaining Wish Tree sign-ups will be taken on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Participants must personally come in to the of fice to register their chil dren. Sponsor may choose tags from the tree through December 18, 1997. Gifts are to be returned to the T.E.A.C.H. office, wrapped with the identity tags taped securely to the gifts on or be fore December 18.

Presents will be available to pick up as soon as they be come available. Packages will only be released to a parent or guardian and no packages can be mailed.

Packages must be picked up no later than Monday, Dec. 24.

The first Wish Tree in Alturas was started thanks to Ron Boran, a former Manager of the Modoc Chamber of Commerce. Bo ran who saw the need for such an effort, organized the first few years of the Wish Tree and personally made gift deliveries dressed as Santa Claus.

When response to the Wish Tree grew so greatly and it was too much for one person already working a full-time job in the commu nity, T.E.A.C.H., Inc. took over the holiday task and has kept it going these past several years.

The community and a few generous contributors from outside Modoc, have thus far been responsive to the needs of Modoc's children.

Record news summaries for Nov. 27, 1997


Welfare reform plan out for review
Modoc Forest Supervisor resigns
Unemployment rate up slightly
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Welfare Reform plan soon out for public review

The county's draft CalWorks (Welfare Reform) plan will be out for public review and comment from December 2 through December 12.

The plan is the framework of the county's view of welfare reform, which will be implemented next year and will have serious impacts locally. There are several major changes in the welfare program and its administration.

The plan details changes in grant awards, eligibility, term limits, child care, work requirements, sanctions, job creation and other items.

"This plan basically is all the different activities that have to be done with welfare reform and any actions we have to take as far as welfare to work activities, time limits and different issues," said Richard Belarde, Modoc Social Services Director, "It's the plan we have to assist families in their transition off of aid."

It also deals with domestic violence issues, collaboration for training, local labor market needs, community service items, substance abuse and mental health services and mandates.

"The biggest issue of all is that it is no longer an entitle ment program, it is now a capped five-year service for adults," said Belarde. "After five years you're done, coun try-wide. After we've given all help, and made sure the bar riers are gone --child care, transportation, substance abuse, etc. -- then it's incumbent on the recipients to have a job or do community service work for the community. People are go ing to have to go to a work site to be eligible for an aid pro gram. And five years is the limit."

Belarde said the new plan and federal and state laws, mandates that barriers to recipients becoming self-suffi cient be dealt with. Those include items like substance abuse or mental health issues. The new law mandates that the re cipients who need help enroll in those programs. Child care and transportation issues are also a major concern and part of the plan.

"Now is the time we're taking public input, and any input we get will be presented to the Board of Supervisors on December 16," said Belarde. "The Board has the options of approving the plan, amending the plan or making other changes."

The Welfare Reform Committee has been working on the draft since May 19. The committee was formed by the Board on May 6.

The five year clock starts for everyone January 1, 1998.

The draft plan is available at all county libraries, the Family Centers in Alturas and Tulelake, New Directions, all schools, the County Office of Education, Social Services Office, GAIN office, TEACH, Modoc Indian Health, County Administrator's Office and County Clerk's Office.

There is also a public forum scheduled December 8, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Alturas City Hall, 200 North Street. Members of the Welfare Reform Committee will be on hand to answer questions and offer explanations.

Written comments on the plan are also accepted and should be mailed to Richard Belarde, Social Services Director, at 120 N. Main Street, Alturas.

MNF Supervisor resigns

Modoc National Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-BramMNF Forest Supervsior resignson from the position as well as the Forest Service, effective January 3, 1998.

She has been Modoc Forest Supervisor since August 23, 1991 after coming to the forest in May, 1991 as the acting su pervisor.

In a message to Forest employees November 24, Henderson-Bramlette said it was time to move on. She said she is taking ownership of a clothing store in Bishop and will run an antique and hot springs business on she and her husband's ranch.

"I leave with heavy heart and a warm smile for all the wonderful experiences during the last 17 years with the Forest Service and all the great folks here on the Modoc," she wrote.

She said the decision to resign was difficult during these budget troubled times, but felt it was time to make a change.

Unemployment rate up slightly

The unemployment rate for Modoc County in October, 1997 is at 8 percent, above the 6 percent state unemployment rate and well above the 4.7 percent national rate.

The 8 percent rate is above Oct. 1996, when the rate was 7.4 percent and jumped up from 7.9 percent in September, 1997.

Modoc ranks 36th out of 58 counties in unemployment. San Mateo has the lowest rate of 2.6 percent with Imperial having the highest rate at 30.8 percent. Lassen had a unem ployment rate of 5.7 percent with Siskiyou at 9.2 percent.


Record news summaries for December 4, 1997


Welfare reform plan means change
City audit looks good
Rooters bus heads to Los Angeles
History comes alive in Journal
Chorale to perform this weekend
Arts Faire this week at the Niles Hotel

The forecast:Look for unsettled weather for the next five days with possible snow and rain. Snow level is about 5,000 feet with lows into the 20s.

Modoc's plan for welfare reform out for public review

The Modoc County plan to reform welfare in line with state and federal guidelines is now out for public review and comment.

The draft CalWORKS plan will be presented to the Modoc County Board of Supervisors for their approval or comment and changes December 16. It was prepared by the county's Welfare Reform Committee and has been in the works since May.

A public forum on the draft plan is scheduled for Dec. 8, 7 p.m. at Alturas City Hall and the public will be able to ask questions and receive more information about the plan. Copies of the plan are available at county libraries.

The major emphasis behind the new plan and direction for welfare is to get people off the rolls and into employment. The major point in all of that is there is a five-year cap on benefits. And the clock starts ticking January 1.

According to the plan, CalWORKS transfers to county su pervisors the decision-making responsibilities regarding the design and direction of the local Welfare-to-Work Programs.

The main goals of the Modoc CalWORKS Program are as follows:

Promoting self-sufficiency; through a multi-tiered, multi-agency system emphasizing "up-front" employment upon the applicant's entry into public assistance. The county will provide diversional services in hopes to utilize county aid as a boost for client employment and minimizing time on aid, to assist clients in transitioning off of aid, offering job retention service as needed.

The paramount emphasis throughout the CalWORKS pro cess will be that personal responsibility and accountability will be encouraged and rewarded. Throughout the eligibility period, the county will need flexibility to meet recipients' needs.

Through implementation of financial penalties for non-compliance and capped time on aid, participants will be en couraged to provide positive role models for their children and realize that Social Services are to be utilized temporar ily in times of crisis.

According to the draft plan, the county will continue to improve services for families and children, continuing to protect families, children, individuals in need, and promote personal responsibility, independence and self-sufficiency.

There is a sense, or a necessary element of public and private sector collaboration to provide a forum where the pro gram will work for the common good.

In order to get people off the welfare rolls and into jobs, the key is employment, which has no easy answers in Modoc or most of rural California.

One of the main goals of the program is to work at em ployment creation and job retention in the county, with the collaboration of a wide variety of agencies and private sector groups.

With Modoc's unemployment level averaging about 11.8 percent, the effort to create new jobs is daunting, but the task is being shared by more groups than in the past and the ef forts are serious.

Included in some of the effort will be networking with the grounds already established in economic and job creation development, surveying existing businesses and employers as to their projections of future employee openings as well as training and education needs and working with employer groups who will volunteer advice and guidance in placing people into jobs.

The effort to get people off welfare has several steps and will be a concentrated effort. The county stresses the welfare reform packages and plans now being addressed are serious and designed to make fundamental changes in the welfare programs nationally.

Some of the activities applicants may be required to do in clude the following: unsubsidized employment, subsidized private or public sector employment, work experience, sub stance abuse services, domestic violence services, on-the-job training, vocational education and training, adult-based education, work study, self-employment, community ser vice, transitional employment, mental health services and others.

Child care and transportation issues are also included in the plan and a big part of the plan is to provide more child care services.

The objectives of the welfare plans are to reduce the num ber of families on welfare, increase the number of job placements, increase the earnings of families on welfare and to increase the number of families going off of aid due to earnings.

An example of what work time will be required in the Welfare-to-Work program is as follows for an adult in a one-parent situation: 20 hours per week beginning January 1, 1998; 26 hours per week beginning July 1, 1998 and 32 hours per week beginning July 1, 1999 and thereafter.

There are other requirements listed in the plan and those should be studied by the public and commented on before the Board of Supervisors formally adopts the plan on December 16.

City audit looks good

The audit report for the City of Alturas showed good fi nancial accounting, according to Auditors Bartig, Basler and Ray.

The auditor did state that there are a few matters that are opportunities for strengthening internal controls and oper ating efficiency.

The auditor states the city should set up account groups to record general fixed assets and related debt, if any. Since the task would require council approval because of estimated cost and additional staffing, the councils have found other priorities for expenditures and have not addressed the fixed asset account.

City Treasurer Kathy Alves said the audit report was gen erally good, and the fixed asset situation is something that has been recommended before. Fixed assets include build ings, machinery, etc.

"Of course, we'd like to get a perfect report, but we're pleased with this, we know about the fixed asset recommen dation, but it hasn't been a priority for the councils," she said.

The city does keep records of its fixed assets, but not in the manner recommended by the auditors.

A recommendation from last year's audit that water and sewer receivables be analyzed was implemented by the city.

Rooters bus planned championship game

A rooters bus is being planned for the trip to Los Angeles for Saturday's State Championship volleyball game between Modoc and Immanuel, of Reedly, in Los Angeles.

The bus will be provided by a private tour company at $110 per person round-trip. There are 42 seats available on the bus. The bus has full reclining seats, video capability, restrooms and is very comfortable. Seats are still avail able on a first-come-first-serve basis. Hurry to get yours.

Modoc plays for the state championship, the first time in the history of the school at 9 a.m. Saturday morning. The bus will leave Alturas Friday afternoon and arrive back in town Sunday moring. Sign up for the bus at Plumas Bank in Alturas.

The Modoc girls team will be flying to Los Angeles Friday and will be coming back on Sunday.

History Comes Alive in Journal

Jesse Hughes, Hippy Burmister, William C. Dalton, Detlef Derner, Buff Chace, and Lige Langston--these are just a few of the men whose stories are told in the 1997 Modoc County Historical Society Journal.

In addition to biographi cal sketches, excerpts of memoirs, and numerous photographs, the 1997 Journal contains a chronology, with early photographs, of Modoc County sheriffs from 1874 to the present and Laurance Fee's history of cattle ranch ing in Modoc County.

The Modoc County Histor ical Society (MCHS) dis tributes its annual publica tion free to its members and offers it for sale at the follow ing locations: Enderlin's Pharmacy and the Modoc County Museum in Alturas, Great Basin Books and Sur prise Valley Pharmacy in Cedarville, Adin Supply in Adin, Coast to Coast in Ma lin, the Tulelake Pharmacy in Tulelake, and the Lava Beds National Monument. The Modoc County Museum will be opened just through December 6 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The goal of the Modoc County Historical Society is to document, preserve, and share a unique regional history. The 1997 MCHS of ficers are Don Stahl, presi dent; June Graham, vice president; Barbara Eaton, recording secretary; and Dixie Server, secretary-treasurer. To join the Modoc County Historical Society or to purchase the MCHS Jour nal, call Dixie Server at 233-3724.

Each year the editor of the Modoc County Historical So ciety Journal collects in formation and solicits arti cle submissions based on a particular theme. The 1997 book, with the theme "Men of Modoc County's Past," is a companion volume to the 1992 issue, "Women of Modoc County's Past." The num ber of historical articles submitted for the 1997 Jour nal was greater than what was anticipated, so the bio graphical theme will carry over into the 1998 Journal.

The society is currently seeking more articles to fill the 1998 MCHS Journal. If you missed the opportunity to submit an article for the 1997 "Men of Modoc's Past," you have another chance. The theme of the 1998 Journal, "People of Modoc County's Past", is extended to include articles about both men and women.

Every year the Modoc County Historical Society depends on its members and the greater Modoc commu nity to contribute articles and article ideas for the MCHS Journal. The editor is looking for articles that show the human side of his tory; articles about interest ing or noteworthy characters from the past, or articles that reveal something about day-to-day Modoc life or the peo ple behind events in and around Modoc County in previous eras. In addition to biographical articles on men and women, the MCHS wants to publish letters, di aries, and memoirs that open a door to days gone by.

If you would like to submit an article or if you have an idea for an article, contact Sara Gooch, MCHS Journal editor at P.O. Box 396, Cedarville, CA 96104 or by e-mail at saraben@hdo.net, or by telephone at (530) 279-6372.

MPAT Chorale adds sparkle, song to holidays in Alturas, Surprise Valley

Modoc Performing Arts Chorale of 21 voices will harmonize in songs familiar to many during their Holiday Chorale Concert at the A.C.T. Niles Theater on Sunday after noon, Dec. 7 at 2:30 p.m. Admission is $3 per person at the door.

Director Barbara Green will include in strumental and vocalists in the hour and a half concert featuring Broadway show tunes, holiday music, sprinkled with classical mu sic.

The Chorale will sing favorites from their upcoming Spring 1998 MPAT musical Brigadoon, as well as holiday songs from around the world.

The concert is appropriate for all ages and proceeds will be placed toward the purchase of a portable keyboard for MPAT.

Performers include IdaGrace Armor, Mary Bauer, Kerry Davis, Karen Hays, Lynette Jensen, Elsie Jessup, Margarette Johnson, Kathy Sisco, Magaret Thayer, Edith Asrow, Jenny Barnett, Lesley Chace, Mari lyn Curry, Midge Dier, Wilda Rudderham, Yvonne Studinski, Nancy Gardner, Stephen Johnson, Dee Green, Gene Jensen, Bill Tier ney. Robin Hagge and Don Eaton will be ac companists.

The fine china and linens plus holiday decorations will make the holiday atmo sphere sparkle at a dinner served by the Sur prise Valley High Senior Class students dur ing a special event on Friday, Dec. 5 in the Surprise Valley Ele mentary cafeteria, Cedarville.

The public will then be treated to a musical performance in the SVES Gym, provided by the Modoc Performing Arts Chorale who will perform songs from well known Broad way musicals, folk music and more in duets, so los and the chorale as a whole.

It will be a time for children and adults to ring in the holidays, have an opportunity to dress for the occasion, feel treated and enjoy a nice evening, say organizers. A cross rib roast dinner will be served with dessert and beverage included, with serving from 5:30 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. The Chorale will begin their performance at 7 p.m.

The Surprise Valley Project Graduation Parent Com mittee and Senior Class are pre senting the evening as a benefit for the 1998 Project Graduation. Pre-sale tickets are $10 for the dinner and performance; $8 for under age 12. Only 100 tickets will be sold. Should any tickets remain the evening of Dec. 5, they will be available at the door. If at tending the musical performance only; admission is $3 per person at the door.

Pre-sale tickets are available at Surprise Valley Drug, Little Hair Shop and Great Basin Books in Cedarville.

Niles Arts Faire brings on the holidays with plenty of choices this Saturday

The sounds, smells and sparkle of the holidays await patrons of the Niles Christmas Arts Faire, which returns Satur day, Dec. 6 to the historic Niles Hotel in Alturas. Doors will be open to the pub lic from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Admission is free and all that awaits is tempting with small and large finds this year.

Handmade products will include quality crafts from pottery, leather jackets, handmade beeswax candles, soaps, glass objects, gem stone jewelry and Native American crafts, photos, wreaths, quilted items, lodgepole furniture and much more for gift giving or to enjoy at home throughout the year.

George Cooper will be tak ing photos with Santa this year.

All the rooms from the large main J.E. Niles Room to the Cressler Bonner, Stronghold Room and sec ond floor, will be filled will the works of local artists and artisans.

Showing items this year will be Wendi Lancaster, Alturas; Maxine and Monty Sonnevil, Alturas; Judy Hall and Mark Romans, Alturas; Lawrence and Corene Beebe, Alturas; Du ane and Dixie McGarva, Likely; Debbie Campbell, Alturas; painter E.B. (Evelina) Lawrence, Cal Pines; Karen Kelley, Al turas; Ed and Mae Coron ado, Alturas; Diane Mello, Adin; Dick Mackey, Al turas; Cindy Haddox and Bobbie Maddox, Alturas; Melody Cooper and Evelyn Rose, Alturas; Jennifer Pent, Ft. Bidwell; Katherine Coppini and Maxine Lawrence, Likely; Debbie and Tom McHugh, Alturas; Sheri Budmark, Alturas; Joy Murphy and Lisa Chavez, Alturas; Sharon Ponti, Alturas; Dia Kimm-Orozco, Adin; Gina Menez, Ft. Bidwell.

Record news for December 11, 1997


Trains heading back to Alturas?
Lawsuit filed on refuge farming practices
Forester convicted on some charges
18 inmates moved from camp
Aduitions open for MPAT's new play

The forecast:Skies will be partly cloudy today turning to fair tonight. Lows will be 5 above to the teens. Mostly sunny Friday and Saturday, but remaining cold. Increasing clouds on Sunday and possible snow by Monday.

Railroading coming back to Alturas? All Aboard!

Alturas was once a major railroad town, and if things go according to plan, the era's history will soon return.

Tuesday night the Alturas City Council approved the pro posal to purchase a 103-acre section of the former Alturas Mill site as a part of a plan to place a Railroad Historical Operating Museum on the site.

The purchase will take some time, but the city has started the wheels moving on that part of the project. What the city is buying is that portion of the mill site on the east side where the planer mill building was and where there is an existing railroad spur. The museum itself will be placed on that site and it will include a place to display and repair railroad equipment, a recreational vehicle park and other entities.

The city is working in conjunction with the Wrymoo Railroad Historical and Education Society on the project. Wrymoo has already moved a 1943, 37-ton Plymouth Locomotive to the mill site and plans on mov ing other equipment in the near future.

Wrymoo officials came to City Hall Tuesday night with their proposal, which was greeted with enthusiasm and given the nod to proceed.

In addition to having the Railroad Mu seum at the Mill site, the proposal also calls for an excursion train, but that is still in the works. Part of the excursion train plan in cludes renovating the steam engine at Veteran's Park and putting it back into ser vice.

Wrymoo is a non-profit organization and would operate in a Joint Powers Agreement with the city in the operation of the museum and railroad. Both entities believe the part ner ship is well-suited for success.

Wrymoo had much of its equipment at Mather Field in Sacramento for rebuilding, repair and restoration and was working with other rail projects in the state.

In the summer of 1997, Wyrmoo's Board of Directors de cided Mather did not have enough room and began a search for a new home. That's when County-City Planner Scott Kessler got involved as he'd be working on railroad issues for several years, trying to stop the abandonment of the rail lines in this area.

The proposal wants the Alturas museum to be a regional showcase, with a hands-on op erating railroad museum, filled with both static and operational railroad cars, locomo tives and artifacts. The society would like to conduct an op erational full size tourist-pas senger train, offering rides on daily basis. Dinner trains and even gambling trains are being considered.

In order for the proposal to work, there has to be plenty of city and community support and participation.

According to Wrymoo President Suzanne L. Berdall, of Elk Grove, the society believes the museum should be con sidered Alturas' museum with local participation from pri vate citizens and civic groups.

"For example, the society would like to see the local gar den club build and maintain a gazebo-style lunch area for eating," she said. "Additionally, we would like a service group to handle food service and on the dinner trains we would like to have local restau rants do those meals so the entire economy perks up."

While Wrymoo will bring its initial col lection of rail road equipment as the nucleus of the museum, an ongoing effort will be maintained to find other equipment.

The city will provide the site at no cost to Wrymoo until the facility generates enough funding to cover costs. The city will work with Wrymoo in finding and acquiring suitable grants and other funding sources and also on obtaining block grant funding for purchases. The proposal calls for a 99 year commitment by the city.

While the excursion train is still in the idea stages, a pos sible depot would be the Whistle Stop on east Street, or even the Elks Lodge on Main Street.

"We believe this is a very workable deal and are excited about the possibilities," said Kessler.

According to Berdall, Wrymoo is commit ted to making this museum a regional tourist attractive and making it one of the nicest in the country.

Suit challenges Tulelake refuge farming practices

A federal lawsuit was filed Monday by conservation groups challenging farming practices on the Tulelake and Lower Klamath Wildlife refuges.

That suit was filed against Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt, claiming he has allowed 22,000 acres of former wet lands to be farmed, harming wildlife and waterfowl.

Felice Pace, the Klamath Forest Alliance Executive Director said the suit aims to modify or curtail certain types of farming practices which the environmental groups say are not compatible with good wildlife management. Chief among those farming practices are row crops, such as pota toes, sugar beets and pesticide use.

According to Pace, the lawsuit has two basic goals. "It seeks to end farming practices that are incompatible with wildlife conservation including row crops and pesticide use," he said. "Secondly, under Refuge Management Laws, the Secretary has a duty to maintain adequate water quantity and quality in the wildlife refuge system. Fulfilling both of these goals will substantially enhance wildlife habitat, par ticularly for waterfowl.

"We are asking Babbitt to modify adverse agricultural and water diversion practices, and in that way to optimize wildlife habitat on these public refuge lands."

Tulelake area farmers lease the refuge lands, amount ing to about $1.8 million annually and make most of their income off potatoes, although grains are also planted on these lands.

While Pace believes there are area farmers who do a good job and are sensitive to wildlife concerns, his group felt the suit was necessary to bring conformity.

In addition to the Klamath Forest Alliance, groups in volved in the suit are: The Wilderness Society, Sierra Club, National Audubon Society, Oregon Natural Resources Council, Mazamas, Golden Gate Audubon Society, Klamath Basin Audubon Society, Northcoast Environmental Center, Portland Audubon Society, Rogue Valley Audubon Society and the Umqua Valley Audubon Society.

It's estimated that as much as 80 percent of the Pacific Flyway migratory birds pass through the Klamath Basin. In a 1956 report, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service terms the bird population in the Klamath basin, "the greatest concen tration of waterfowl in North America and probably the world."

The conservation groups charge that several federal refuge laws have been violated, including:

Bureau of Reclamation farming program on refuge lands that is incompatible for primary wildlife conserva tion purposes;

BOR and Fish and Wildlife Service permit spraying of pesticides on refuge lands in violation of Interior Department regulations;

BOR's failure to deliver sufficient water to the Lower Klamath refuge for marshes utilized by waterfowl, espe cially during peak migration seasons;

BOR, FWS service emphasis on commercial irri gated agriculture on the refuge, resulting in the loss of pro ductive marsh habitat and precipitous declines in waterfowl breeding birds;

Reduced habitat for bald eagles and waterfowl;

Insufficient amounts and distribution of marshland habitat for clean water, resulting in loss of refuge biodiver sity and overall ecosystem health;

Extremely poor water quality with high levels of toxic ammonia contributing to dissolved oxygen concentra tions as low as zero; water temperatures as high as 86 de grees, plus pHs as 10.3;

Physical and environmental constraints that in crease the probability of lethal bacteria diseases, such as bo tulism and avian cholera, that in most years results in the death of thousands of refuge birds;

Siltation of remaining Tule Lake marsh and gen eral lack of deep water marsh habitat necessary for diving ducks and other fish and wildlife species;

Local extirpation of native fish and amphibian popu lations for most refuge waters.

"Wildlife protection has increasingly become subordi nate to commercial agriculture on the Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuges," said Wendell Wood, of the Oregon Natural Resources Council. "At these National Wildlife Refuges, thousands of acres of potatoes and barley have been given priority over eagles. Onions and sugar beets in many years get more water than ducks geese and swans."

In addition to the BOR's 22,000 acres of farming, 6,000 acres are farmed by Fish and Wildlife permittees on a "share-cropped" basis. According to Pace, those farmers ap ply numerous pesticides which are known to have killed refuge wildlife.

Tulelake area farmers are contending with an Integrated Pest Management Plan that threatens to eat into their pocketbooks and this week's suit by the conservation groups will add to their concerns.

18 illegal aliens moved out of camp

Last week, as part of a statewide action, 18 illegal immi grant inmates were transferred from Devil's Garden Conservation Camp to secure facilities.

The California Department of Corrections moved all in mates with a United States Immigration and Naturalization felony hold from areas without a se cure perimeter into se cure fa cilities.

According to the California Correctional Center at Susanville, there were nearly 300 inmates from the outlying satellite conservation camps under its direction moved back into the institution. Statewide the order affected about 30,000 inmates who may have had a USINS hold or were in the country illegally.

The move of those inmates was done on Thursday and the CCC will now begin a sys tematic review of each in mate's case factors to deter mine whether the case should be referred to the U.S. Attorney for possible prosecu tion. The California Department of Corrections wanted to ensure the safety of surrounding communities by returning these inmates from outside work crews or camps into secure prison housing.

The CDC examines all the files of all possible illegal aliens to see if they fit the cri teria to be referred to the U.S. Attorney for prosecution un der the federal law for illegal entry. Depending upon the circumstances of their crime, il legal aliens who have been deported previously face fed eral sentences of up to 10 years or up to 20 years.

Other inmates were trans ferred to Devil's Garden when the inmate population stands at 116.

Verdicts in on Cal Pines forester

The U.S District Court case against Albert Cornelius, of Mt. Shasta, who was the forester in the California Pines log ging operation un der Ted Combis and Thena, Inc., was completed last Thursday.

Cornelius was acquitted of federal charges of mail fraud and interstate transportation of stolen property. He was con victed on one count each of perjury and obstruction of justice. He is scheduled for sentencing February 22 by Judge Owen Panner. Panner, who presided over the non-jury trial in October, dis missed four counts of mail fraud and five counts of in terstate transportation of stolen property, largely trees taken from Cal Pines.

Combis has pleaded guilty to several charges stemming from the logging operation that still has California Pines residents seething. He faces up to 63 months in prison and was a key witness against Cornelius. For his testimony against Cornelius, Combis wanted a government promise that his sentence would be reduced by 10 months. Cornelius has denied any wrongdoing in the case.

In addition, a Prineville, Oregon logger, James T. Smith, also pleaded guilty to timber theft charges in November and will be sen tenced at a later date.

Auditions for Brigadoon open with New Year

Mark January 6 and 7 on the 1998 calendar to audition either night for the upcoming musical Brigadoon, to be presented by Modoc Performing Arts Theater.

Singers, dancers, actors and people to help with the technical aspects of the production, will be needed.

Auditions will be held at 7:00 p.m. at the A.C.T. Niles Theater on Tuesday and Wednesday, Jan. 6 and 7.

Prepare a song to sing and bring the music or a cassette tape for accompaniment. A pianist and a cassette tape player will be available.

All ages are welcome to audition. Chip Massie will be stage director and Dee Green, musical director for the March 26-29 performances. For more information please call 233-5600 and ask for Chip.

Record news for December 18, 1997

County approves welfare reform plan
Cal Pines home burns to ground
Cedar Pass Ski Hill opens this weekend
Wish tree still has hopes, dreams
MPAT has audition for new play

The forecast:Look for continued winter weather with snow showers today and night with mostly sunny on Friday, but highs in the 30s. Look for showers on

the weekend.

County approves welfare reform program plan

The Modoc County Board of Supervisors approved the Modoc CalWORKS plan Tuesday, putting in place the county's welfare reform system which becomes effective January 1. It was prepared by the County's Welfare Reform Committee and has been in the works since May.

The plan is a major change in the welfare system with emphasis on getting welfare recipient off the rolls and into jobs. There is a five year cap on welfare benefits. Supervisors continue to express concerns that current em ployed individuals do not lose jobs in favor of a welfare re cipient, whose wages could be subsidized and who would still qualify for other state or federal aid.

"I hope we're not redefining affirmative action, that's all I'm hoping. The state is putting those folks first," said Supervisor Joe Colt. "We did adopt it. We've got the what's and now we need the how's to create jobs. We hope we are not going to displace workers. The working poor will be out try ing to do things, but may be overlooked because they are not on welfare. We don't want to displace workers. It's a real concern."

According to the plan, CalWORKS transfers to county su pervisors the decision-making responsibilities regarding the design and direction of the local Welfare-to-Work Programs.

The main goals of the Modoc CalWORKS Program are as follows:

Promoting self-sufficiency; through a multi-tiered, multi-agency system emphasizing "up-front" employment upon the applicant's entry into public assistance. The county will provide diversional services in hopes to utilize county aid as a boost for client employment and minimizing time on aid, to assist clients in transitioning off of aid, offering job retention services as needed.

The paramount emphasis throughout the CalWORKS pro cess will be that personal responsibility and accountability will be encouraged and rewarded. Throughout the eligibility period, the county will need flexibility to meet recipients' needs.

Through implementation of financial penalties for non-compliance and capped time on aid, participants will be en couraged to provide positive role models for their children and realize that Social Services are to be utilized temporar ily in times of crisis.

According to the draft plan, the county will continue to improve services for families and children, continuing to protect families, children, individuals in need, and promote personal responsibility, independence and self-sufficiency.

There is a sense, or a necessary element of public and private sector collaboration to provide a forum where the pro gram will work for the common good.

In order to get people off the welfare rolls and into jobs, the key is employment, which has no easy answers in Modoc or most of rural California.

One of the main goals of the program is to work at em ployment creation and job retention in the county, with the collaboration of a wide variety of agencies and private sector groups. Supervisors are concerned about just how those jobs are going to be created and by whom. Public sector or sub sized community service may not be the cure-all, said Colt.

With Modoc's unemployment level averaging about 11.8 percent, the effort to create new jobs is daunting, but the task is being shared by more groups than in the past and the ef forts are serious.

Included in some of the effort will be networking with the grounds already established in economic and job creation development, surveying existing businesses and employers as to their projections of future employee openings as well as training and education needs and working with employer groups who will volunteer advice and guidance in placing people into jobs.

The effort to get people off welfare has several steps and will be a concentrated effort. The county stresses the welfare reform packages and plans now being addressed are serious and designed to make fundamental changes in the welfare programs nationally.

Some of the activities applicants may be required to do in clude the following: unsubsidized employment, subsidized private or public sector employment, work experience, sub stance abuse services, domestic violence services, on-the-job training, vocational education and training, adult-based education, work study, self-employment, community ser vice, transitional employment, mental health services and others.

Child care and transportation issues are also included in the plan and a big part of the plan is to provide more child care services.

The objectives of the welfare plans are to reduce the num ber of families on welfare, increase the number of job placements, increase the earnings of families on welfare and to increase the number of families going off of aid due to earnings.

An example of what work time will be required in the Welfare-to-Work program is as follows for an adult in a one-parent situation: 20 hours per week beginning January 1, 1998; 26 hours per week beginning July 1, 1998 and 32 hours per week beginning July 1, 1999 and thereafter.

Fire destroys Cal Pines home, kills pets

Last week a fire completely destroyed the 32-foot travel trailer home of Ruby Pantlik in the valley behind the Alamo Restaurant.

According to Cal Pines Fire Department Chief Glenn Joyce, the fire started Wednesday afternoon last week and did its damage quickly. The trailer was re duced to a melted mass. Pantlik's nephew and a Cal Pines fireman battled the blaze before engines from Cal Pines and CDF arrived, but could not save the structure.

Also lost in the blaze were Pantlik's pets, five cats and one dog. Pantlik was at work when the fire occurred. The cause of the fire is under in vestigation.

Good News! Cedar Pass Ski Hill opens this week

Talk about good news for the Christmas vacation -- the Cedar Pass Ski Hill is opening Saturday morning and should remain open for the Christmas break.

An early snow was groomed and packed by the Cedar Pass Ski Corporation and this latest series of storms has dropped a good amount of snow on the hill. Everything at the hill is in good shape and ready to go. The hill will open Saturday at 10 a.m. and run through 4 p.m. The same hours will be in effect Sunday. In addition to weekend skiing, the hill is planning to open on other days during the vacation.

Season passes are available at $150 for adults and $130 for youth, ages 6 to 18. There is also a 10 percent discount on those passes through January 7. Also available this year are 5-day passes for $65 for adults and $55 for youth and corpo rate passes starting at $250. All passes are available at the hill when open, or at the Farm Advisors Office on Fourth Street in Alturas or at Modoc Engines.

Also new this season is Ski Bucks, presented to volunteers as lift passes in return for their volunteer work.

Signs at the Chevron Station in Alturas and in Cedarville will tell skiers whether the hill is open on any day, so keep an eye open.

Wishes still dangle from Wish Tree

Today is supposed to be the cut-off day for gift sponsors to provide gifts for the Chil dren's Wish Tree, orga nized by TEACH, Inc. But, with so many wishes left dangling, the deadline has been ex tended.

On Monday afternoon, just under 40 chil dren's wish tree tags were still left un taken and still hanging on the tree.

Anyone who wants to be come a one-time gift sponsor can aid the situation. The chil dren whose names re main on the tree, are boys and girls ranging in age from 7-12.

Each tag lists one or two "wishes," one need item and one want item the child's age, size, gender. Names are kept anonymous. Only in come eligible fami lies are al lowed to register children for the Wish Tree and proof of income is re quired.

The Wish Tree is meant to make Christ mas brighter for children who would oth er wise go without due to fam ily hard ships.

Many of the wishes are for warm clothes.

Lynda Grimme, Wish Tree coordinator, plans to keep the deadline open until Mon day, Dec. 22, to accom modate gift sponsors and the children.

"TEACH, Inc. has some money to pur chase a few gifts for some of the Wish Tree chil dren, but not enough for all of them," ex plained Grimme.

Although there is never a guarantee that all children's wishes will come true, the community has chipped in year after year, to make sure no child goes without a Christmas gift. This year's tree accepted wishes from 250 children.

Grimme is hopeful all the wishes will come through, but it will only happen through the generosity of those who show they care. In lieu of picking up a Wish Tree child's tag at the office, cash donations will also be ac cepted to purchase a gift for the child. Any dona tions should be made payable to the TEACH, Inc. office.

The Wish Tree sponsors represent a wide range of donors this year, from teens and young children to local service clubs and or ganiza tions, churches, businesses, individ uals, organizations, agencies and a few gift sponsors from out of town.

For more information call (530) 233-3111 or stop by the TEACH, Inc. office at 112 East Second St., Alturas behind the Beacon Restau rant. The office is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. - 12 noon and 1:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Get set to audition for new year's Brigadoon

Auditions for the upcoming musical Brigadoon, to be presented by Modoc Performing Arts Theater, will be held January 6 and 7.

Singers, dancers, actors and people to help with the technical aspects of the production, will be needed.

Auditions will be held at 7:00 p.m. at the A.C.T. Niles Theater on Tuesday and Wednesday, Jan. 6 and 7.

Prepare a song to sing and bring the music or a cassette tape for accompaniment. A pianist and a cassette tape player will be available.

All ages are welcome to audition. Chip Massie will be stage director and Dee Green, musical director for the March 26-29 performances. For more information please call 233-5600 and ask for Chip.

Record News summaries for Dec. 25, 1995


Big dreams, wishes come true
Best decorated homes, businesses awarded
Farm Bureau tells ranchers to claim water
Modoc unemployment rate is 10.1%
Home health care concerned about new rules

The forecast:Christmas Eve will be cool with lows 5 to 20 and Christmas Day remains cold. Look for mostly clear and breezy with patchy clouds through the weekend.

Big grins, warm feelings to light up Christmas

It came down to the wire, but hope reigned. Wishes will come true Christmas Day for the over 250 youngsters whose names were sub mitted to the T.E.A.C.H., Inc. Christmas Wish Tree for 1997.

Last Wednesday, with 40 names left dan gling on the tree, Wish Tree coordinator Lynda Grimme, was concerned, but said she felt things would work out yet.

"After the Record story came out saying we still had so many tags left, people really re sponded," said Grimme. "We had a flock of people come into the T.E.A.C.H. office Thursday, Friday and Monday, willing to help these kids out. We only had eight tags left by Friday and T.E.A.C.H. had enough to purchase gifts for them," said Grimme. "On Monday morning, more people came in to pick up Wish Tree tags to help, but all the children had been taken care as of Friday. The community's response was wonderful as a whole."

Grimme said she noticed more individu als responded as gift sponsors this year and she wished people could see the smiles and happy surprise on the chil dren's faces when they open their gifts. "Seeing those smiles makes it all worth while," she shared.

Almost all the gifts were taken home by the registered families throughout the day on Monday. The Wish Tree was to make Christmas brighter for the infant to age 12 children, whose families qualified to regis ter for the special service.

"We'll make some changes for next year and may start earlier," said Grimme.

In the Alturas, Tulelake and Newell ar eas, the wishes of 234 youngsters were met, with another 34 in Surprise Valley, making for 268 children in all, helped by local and some out of the area generosity.

The T.E.A.C.H., Inc. office will be open until 5:00 p.m. Wed., Dec. 24 and be closed Thursday and Friday.

Alturas Chamber names top winners in home, business decorating contest

"There are so many beautifully decorated homes," said Alturas Garden Club judges, but only nine entered the Alturas Chamber of Commerce Outdoor Holiday Lighting Contest held for Alturas residences.

Roxann Van Loan's home at 813 Western Street was deemed the top showplace this year, and Van Loan received $75 in Alturas Bucks, redeemable like cash, at local businesses.

Second place winner, the James Babcock home at 508 Short Street, Alturas won the $50 Alturas Bucks prize.

Third place winner, Nifty's Trailer Park at 1401 Thomason Lane, won the $25 Alturas Bucks prize. First through third places were awarded for the home contest.

The Al turas Bucks are pro vided by Al turas Tire Cen ter, RMS Real Estate and United Country Realty.

Other judged entries worth a drive include Perry Porter's home at 515 East 10th St.; Carol Adams' home, 1409 West Ninth St.; Elizabeth Cavasso's home, 750 Woodduck Lane; Den nis Banister's home, 200 East B St.; Gordon Rouse's home, 101 West 16th St.; Mick Doss' lighted menagerie, with hand-tooled decora tions at, 700 North East St., Alturas.

Only one winner was to be selected for the Alturas business decorat ing contest, judged by the Greater Surprise Valley Chamber of Commerce. Pete Stanford's Alturas Auto Parts won the judges' approval. The busi ness' painted windows with Christmas Carol themes, were painted by employee Vera Sphar. Stanford won $50 in Alturas Bucks presented by Shirley Sims of Plumas Bank, which sponsored the prize.

Farm Bureau advises ranchers to claim water

The Modoc County Farm Bureau is advising area ranchers and farmers to file a claim for water rights on stock ponds of less than 10 acre feet, or face the probability of losing that water right.

According to Sean Curtis, the deadline to file those claims is December 31, 1997. The claim will affect stock ponds of 10 acre feet or less that were constructed prior to 1969. Those types of ponds generally store seasonal runoff.

The filing fee for the pond, and each pond must have a separate claim, is $10. Those claims are available at the Farm Bureau office. They must be filed with the State Water Resources Control Board.

Modoc unemployment above 10%, state 5.7%

Modoc's unemployment rate for November, 1997 was 10.1 percent, ranking the county 41st out of the states' 58 counties and well above the state unemployment rate of 5.7 percent.

The unemployment rate nationally stands at 4.3 percent. Modoc unemployment for November, 1997 is down slightly from November, 1996, when it stood at 10.3 percent. The rate is up over October, 1997, which was 8.6 percent and September which was 7.9 percent. Modoc does have a seasonal employ ment structure and rates usually go up in the winter months.

Other neighboring counties had the following November, 1997 unemployment rates: Lassen, 6.5 percent; Siskiyou, 10.8 percent; Shasta 8.2 percent and Plumas, 8.1 percent.

Change in home care pay is con cern

A change in the reim bursement policies for Medicare, as contained in the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 has local and national home health care providers and pa tients con cerned.

According to Shirley Engler of California Health Professionals, Alturas, a change that specifically exludes venipuncture (blood drawing) could have severe impacts on Modoc and rural America.

Engler explains that in some homebound cases home health care professionals will draw blood from a patient for testing, for such things as di abetics, stroke or hyperten sion or those suffering from clinical depression. If the new law remains on the books, those peo ple would have to go into the hospital for the same test, and a greater cost.

But more importantly, said Engler, many of those pa tients reside 40 or 50 miles from a hospital and getting them to the facility just isn't as easy or efficient as having the home health care nurse provide that service at home.

The law could have a se vere impact on home health care agencies as well as force some elderly people out of their homes and into skilled nursing facilities.

The new law is supposed to go into effect in February and home health agencies as well as other health care organizations are con tacting U.S. Senators and Representatives in an effort to get that part of the law changed.

Congressman Nick Rahall, has intro duced legis lation which would reinstate venipuncture as a qualifying service for Medicare home health coverage.

Engler stressed that people need to be aware of what's coming and stresses the im portance of continuing to treat those people who need the blood drawing services at their homes. It makes sense from a caregiver and economic standpoint, she said.

Record news for December 31, 1997

Happy New Year!

  • Several seats open in June 2 county election
  • A review of the top stories of 1997
The forecast:Winter weather is in the forecast the end of this week with rain and snow showers expected Thursday through Sunday. Temperatures will be moderate in the high 20s to mid 30s.

Plenty of seats up for election in June, 1998

Most county seats will be up for election June 2, 1998 ac cording to Modoc County rst time, the primary election will have an open ballot with all parties listed on the same ballot.

County Supervisors in District One, Ben Zandstra, and in District Five, Nancy Huffman, terms expire this year and will be on the ballot.

Modoc Municipal Court Judge Larry Dier will have his position up for election in June. He will have to declare his intent to run for re-election by February 4. Dier is finishing a term after being appointed to the position.

County Offices up for election this year include: District Attorney High Comisky; Sheriff Bruce Mix; Treasurer/Tax Collector, Linda Monroe; Auditor/Recorder, Judi Stephens; Clerk, Maxine Madison; Assessor Josie Johnson and Superintendent of Schools, Carol Harbaugh.

Nomination papers for the above offices can be taken out February 9 and must be filed no later than March 6.

The final day to register to vote in the June 2 election is May 4. Madison stresses that people who have moved, or had a name change must report those changes or re-register to be eligible to vote in the election.

The year in review

The year just ended had several big stories for Modoc County and we'll highlight some of the most important in this review of the last year. While we won't rank them in or der, suffice it to say there were some interesting things hap pening. Here's a month-by-month review.


By far the biggest story of the month was when the moun tainside slipped above Lake City and dumped tons of trees, mud, and boulders on the town and specifically on the Lake City ranch of Joe and Bettie Parman. The landslide wiped out the Parman place, and luckily the Parmans and the Greens were not hurt in the mess. It was a miracle by some accounts. The land slides created havoc up and down Surprise Valley the week of January 1.

Nearly three inches of warm rain had fallen in Surprise Valley that week, melting a mountain snow pack and loos ening the ground. Damage was in the millions, and Surprise Valley residents pitched in to put things back to gether. It was a long and arduous task.

Also in January, the Union Pacific railroad detoured trains through Alturas be cause of track and bridge washouts in Dunsmuir and Feather River canyons as the winter storms blasted north ern California.

Flood relief was being sought by local and state agencies and crews from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA, were on hand to assess dam ages.

In the third week of January, the weather contin ued to be nasty as a storm dropped more than 18 inches of snow in Alturas and more than three feet in the moun tains.

The state's lack of attention to trial court funding created a shortage in the Modoc Courts and the.


The County lost its suit, on all counts, against Superior Court Judge John Baker con cerning the termination of the court's executive officer. That suit had been filed by District Attorney Hugh Comisky.

The survey shows plenty of snowpack in the mountains and a prediction for a good water year.

Melvin Carter, the paroled serial rapist housed at Devil's Garden Conservation Camp, under protest by the county, was escorted out of Modoc February 5, ending a tense time for the camp and county. His arrival in March, 1994, created a major protest by lo cal citizens after Governor Pete Wilson said he would send him to the "wilderness". People in the Bay Area protested his release and he was sent to Modoc. Carter had completed the terms of his pa role in February, 1997.

Outfitter guides Tom and Ruth Lake filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service alleging several counts, all related to harass ment and mistreatment by the Forest Service in the issuance of their special use permit.

A proposed gravel pit on Cedar Pass generated a lot of lo cal protest and interest dur ing the comment stages. A lo cal Internet service was started by A.J. and John McQuarrie.

The county agreed to lend the courts funding to keep the courts open as the state was still bickering over trial court funding issues. Caltrans ap proved a wildlife viewing area on U.S. 395 just south of Alturas and major work on Highway 139 in the Tulelake area.

Following weeks of bicker ing, Judges John Baker and Larry Dier came to terms on court operations, not to the lik ing of some county officials.

While there is concern about increased BLM law en forcement powers, the truth was, there were no new pow ers.


Trial court funds was re stored by the state following a silly stare of affairs. An emergency funding bill was passed.

Modoc's hospital receives a good report form the state after receiving a failing mark in August, 1996. It took team work and elbow grease to get the hospital back in the good graces of the state.

The Court of Appeals knocks Win Back the West on its heels and affirms the ownership of federal land is with the federal government. Win Back the West supporters argued, partially, that the states owned the land within their bound aries. The pri mary impetus behind the movement was pub lic land grazing.

The gravel Pit on Cedar Pass generated a lot of inter est and created plenty of con troversy as opposition orga nized.

The Alturas Post Office was set to move, presumably off of Main Street, creating a protest by the city, downtown mer chants and the Chamber of Commerce.

Popular High School Principal Bob Larkins was told he will not be rehired for the next year. No reason was given and Larkins was sup ported by a large majority of the school staff.

The biggest story of March was the arrest of Modoc District Attorney Hugh Comisky on Driving Under the Influence and Weapons charges in Reno. Comisky was ar rested at 2 a.m. at the intersection of 4th and Eureka Streets, and his arrest made the statewide newscasts.

An Environmental Impact Report was ordered by the Environmental Review Committee on the Cedar Pass Gravel Pit.

Faced with a shrinking jury pool, the courts tighten poli cies on jury duty, insur ing the jury selection is fair and that prospective jurors show up for court.


Juvenile crime in Modoc was up and the probation de partment was concerned about the severity of juvenile crime in the county. News was that the Alturas Post office would move to West C Street near the California Highway Patrol Office. That doesn't sit well with the city.

A federal judge has ruled against the county in a sex-bias suit concerning em ployment of an individual at the Modoc County Sheriff's Office. The judge says the county's gender-based policy for some positions is illegal.

The Alturas City Council appointed Dick Steyer to fill a vacated position.

The Forest Service issued a decision denying Sierra Pacific's Alturas Intertie Route off of Devil's Garden, say ing it didn't have enough information on other routes.

With plenty of snow in the mountains, the water year looks promising. Local reservoirs are nearly full.

The long awaited Alturas City street repair project went out to bid, much to the relief of local people. The Postal Service started to look for a new site for the Post Office, this time on Main Street. Modoc Joint Unified asks for citizens' help in selecting new high school principal.


A local attorney, Barry Kinman, accuses District Attorney Hugh Comisky of bias prosecution. Kinman was convicted on four counts and acquitted on five counts and asked for a new trial.

The Modoc County Record goes out on the World Wide Web with its own web site, up dated every week.

Yuba Trucking appealed the decision to force an EIR on the Cedar Pass Gravel Pit.

The county rejected a Forest Service proposal to take the Alturas Intertie power line over Cedar Pass, calling the idea absurd.

Ted Combis pleaded guilty to mail fraud violations in the federal case against him and his company stemming from his California Pines logging operation. He is expected to serve between 51 and 63 months in prison.

The county formed a Welfare Reform Committee, in or der to meet state and fed eral mandates on the welfare reform issue. Welfare reform is to take effect in January, 1998.

City heard that street re pairs may be hit and miss and says the plan is the brainchild of FEMA. The city asks resi dents to understand problem and be thankful that some streets are getting repaired.

The county planning commission upheld the need of EIR on the Cedar Pass Gravel Pit.

State Superintendent of School Delaine Eastin paid a visit to Modoc, intending to visit all counties in the state and ex pressed a view that she is concerned about the rural schools.

MJUSD tangled with the small schools and class size is sues. The county limited general assistance to 90 days.

Former Modoc Record Publisher, Bob Sloss, died fol low ing a battle with cancer. He was 68 years old.

Alturas Police arrested three suspects, all juveniles, who were involved in an armed robbery at a Reno Market. Modoc County schools graduated 108 se niors.


Modoc District Attorney Hugh Comisky was fined $925 in Reno Justice Court after pleading no contest to DUI and car rying weapon while intoxicated charges in Reno in March. He was also sen tenced to 48 hours community service.

The new site for the Alturas Post Office will be on Main Street across from Carstens Chevrolet.

Alturas Police arrested three people alleging at tempted murder during an al leged drug deal. They were booked into the Modoc County Jail.

Work started on the Alturas Rotary Youth Park new fields, and duck races tickets were on sale for July.

The Elk Herd in Modoc County is reportedly doing well and a working group has been formed to help with the man agement aspects of the elk. The MJUSD board can't agree on principal, and de cides 18 applicants were not enough.

Local Attorney Barry Kinman, had convictions of elder abuse dismissed in Modoc Court and DA Comisky was dis qualified because of apparent bias. Kinman has the remain ing conviction of dissuading a witness on ap peal.

An idea to combine local BLM offices was turned down at the local level, state director says it won't be brought up again. A mountain lion re portedly attacked a California Pines Lodge employee early one morning. A drive-by shoot ing in the Daphnedale area was under investiga tion. There were no injuries. Students brought suit against MJUSD for shower video tape.

The bid to repair city streets was awarded to Hutchins Engineering and Paving of Redding with work to be com pleted by October 17. The Modoc Elk working group was looking into the man agement issues. A young mountain lion was seen in the backyard of a ranch home near Alturas.


The idea of Elk in Modoc is generally an accepted good idea, but some public land grazers look at the herd as a prob lem. Both sides got to gether and toured the area the elk have inhabited.

Thena, Inc. was fined a total of $107,600 in Modoc Municipal Court for numer ous logging violations in California Pines from late 1994 to February 1995.

Modoc County Supervisor Ron McIntyre was flown to Reno where he had open heart surgery. He has recovered and is back on the job.

The Rotary Duck race net ted more than $30,000 for the Youth Park fields. Sierra Pacific may have to go to Route B for its Intertie power line route. The decision does not set well, and the Forest Service's decision to deny Route A is criticized. The pub lic was informed that power marketers will be out soon as electrical deregulation kicks in next year.

County asked for more time to work out comments on route for Alturas Intertie. Modoc ranks 54th in state me dian income, with joint re turns at $28,660. MJUSD claimed no li ability in shower videotape case.

Significant negative im pacts are expected from the pro posed Medicine Lake area geothermal power plant pro pos als. The issue went out for public comment. The repairs to city streets began and the county and hospital employ ees de clared impasse in nego tiations.

Lightning storms blasted Modoc's forests, but no fires were reported. Comments start to arrive on the geother mal plant activity at Medicine Lake and the opposi tion grows. MJUSD says no to extra agriculture teacher and while the board an nounced it would hire a new principal, the man asked to take the job refused sending students back to school without a prin cipal in place.


United Parcel Service em ployees went with union na tionwide on strike. Impacts are felt locally. A mountain lion kills goats at a ranch near Alturas.

The Modoc Fair opened and had a good run. The Forest Service reported find ing the "lost part" of the Applegate trail. A 60-pound male mountain lion was killed on Lyneta ranches. Lyneta Ranches changes ownership, now called Alturas Ranches. The Modoc refuge scenic overlook con struction began.

The Mayor of Alturas, John Hagerman died unexpect edly. The news shocked the community. UPS workers hit the streets again as strike ends. A welcome relief.

The county denies Yuba Trucking appeal on Cedar Pass Gravel Pit, which will require an EIR. Construction booms in the city, with Post Office and street repairs un derway. El Nino on its way, but impact on Modoc is ques tionable. MJUSD hired seven new teachers.


The Welfare Reform Plan of Modoc County was nearing completion and its impacts were announced locally. The biggest part of the plan is a 5-year cap on benefits. A small earthquake was measured 10 miles northeast of Alturas, No one felt the thing. MJUSD was still interviewing for a prin cipal. School has already started, but an interim princi pal Don Demsher is on board. Lightning blasts pounded south ern Modoc, but still no major fires. The Alturas Post Office construction was mov ing along well.

The Modoc County Grand Jury asked that District Attorney Hugh Comisky re sign his position, centered around his arrest for DUI in Reno and questioned Comisky's assertions. Comiksy refused to resign. Alturas Disposal was sold to United Waste Systems, a na tionwide company. Major budget cuts were announced at the Modoc National Forest, putting some local employees at risk of los ing their jobs. The employees remain con cerned.

The county opinions to sue Forest Service over budget cuts. The MJUSD finally hires a new principal to take over, Dewey "Duke" Pasquini. A fire destroyed an Alturas home, but no one in a family was hurt. The county fears that Forest Receipts will be severely impacted as tim ber harvest drops.

Judge John Baker explains function make-up of Grand Jury following Supervisors protest of Grand Jury's recom mendation that the DA re sign. Modoc Forest Supervisors opted to amend plan on power line corridors to allow those corridors on forest lands. The MJUSD is off hook on the shower video tape lawsuit. Modoc's area code would change from 916 to 530 on November 1. New Postmaster, John Hammersmith, comes along with new Post Office in Alturas.


County Parks in line for a $95,000 upgrade in equipment to help make the parks safer. Two young boys set fire to a garage, but no one was hurt. A fugitive suspected in an armed robbery in Tehama County was arrested in Day.

A second outfitter-guide, Don Collis, hit the Forest Service with another federal lawsuit charging racketeer ing. That suit comes on the heels of a similar lawsuit filed by Tom and Ruth Lake earlier this year. The Modoc National Forest signs an amendment allowing power line corridors outside of exist ing corridors when situations permit. The decision had an impact on the Alturas Intertie route. El Nino report edly coming, but Modoc still can't figure out when or in what manner. Uncertainty re mained the key question in El Nino impacts. Sheriff Bruce Mix reported progress in case involv ing several area Post Office burglaries. A toy gun got a stu dent suspended from Modoc Middle School and a local teacher, Joy Murphy, was hurt in a car accident coming from Redding. She has recovered.

Modoc Medical Center got a fine report from the state in spectors and moves forward. Earlier in the year, Surprise Valley Medical Center scored a perfect mark from the state inspectors, a real feather in their cap. The Alturas Library celebrated its 50th year on Third Street. Modoc County found middle ground on local vendor preference.

Modoc changed to new area code, 530, from 916 but resi dents have six months to get used to idea. A hay barn full of hay at a local ranch burned to the ground. A Harrier Fighter Jet lost its canopy over Surprise Valley and made an emer gency landing at the Cedarville Airport, causing quite a stir.


The county health depart ment had some charges lev eled against the director and the Board of Supervisors or dered a different direction. A child molester was sentenced to 83 years in prison. A homemade bomb exploded on a Modoc High School football practice sled. The new Alturas Post Office opened its doors.

Vandals damaged the I'SOT displays. They were later identified and made restitution to the I'SOT com munity. County building took a dip for the month. The County hears probability of future library funding needs. The Post Office scheduled an open house. Veterans remem bered comrades on Veteran's Day.

A Reno mining company has reportedly acquired the High Grade mines. Agencies hope the Wish Tree will help make Christmas good for ev eryone. Thanksgiving giv ing was on high level for community.

Modoc Forest Supervisor Diane Henderson-Bramlette tendered her resignation from the Forest Service. The Welfare Reform Plan came out for public comment. Welfare Reform will take ef fect in January.


Welfare reform plan gets plenty of public scrutiny, few changes in Welfare Reform Committee's proposal. Impacts were considered ma jor and people were advised to take a good look at plan. The Alturas City audit looks good.

Operating railroad and museum proposal got approval from Alturas City Council. City planning to buy part of Alturas Mill property for mu seum location. 18 illegal aliens are moved out of Devil's Garden Conservation Camp under state orders. Albert Cornelius, the forester of Thena, at Cal Pines was convicted in federal court on perjury and obstruc tion of justice charges. A lawsuit was filed in federal court against farming practices on the Tulelake and Lower Klamath Refuges. The rooters bus to L.A. for the Modoc High School Girls state champi onship volleyball match turned out to be the trip from hell as breakdowns and de lays made the trip even longer.

The county approved the Welfare Reform Plan and it will go into effect in January. Supervisors had some con cerns but went ahead with the plan pretty much as written. The Cedar Pass Ski Hill got to open for Christmas vacation, a real good deal. While wishes dangled to the end, the community filled all the wish tree stockings. A fire de stroyed a California Pines home, killing several pets. The owner was at work at the time of the fire.

Modoc unemployment rate above 10 percent as season slowdown kicked in. State rate is 5.7 percent.

Have a great 1998.


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