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Friday Memo for 5/19/2017

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Friday Memo for 5/19/2017
Published on: 5/19/2017 2:00 PM
Nevada County Friday Memo
Difficulty reading this in email? View the Friday Memo on www.MyNevadaCounty.com
Published 5/19/2017
Soda Springs Area Plan Wins Planning Award

​Earlier this week, the Sacramento Valley Section of the American Planning Association (SVS APA) awarded Nevada County's Soda Springs Area Plan with their 2017 Comprehensive Planning Award of Merit. The SVS APA is made up of 22 counties in northern California and the comprehensive planning award is the most competitive of their annual award categories. This is an outstanding achievement and well-deserved recognition for the County and the Soda Springs community.

Despite Soda Springs' being blessed with unique natural amenities and recreation opportunities, it required ingenuity, a will and wherewithal to introduce vitality into the local economy. The Area Plan process helped generate optimism and facilitated local engagement to craft a community centered vision that all stakeholders can embrace and promote. The Area Plan provides a clear and navigable roadmap to a more prosperous and thriving community, and a once severely declining area of our County now holds the prospect of economic viability and sustainable lifestyle.

It's exciting to see Donner Summit's communities using the Area Plan as a tool and catalyst for desired change. The unification of community groups, the emergence of local leaders, and the division of labor with clear missions and assigned tasks that have followed the adoption of the Area Plan are a positive step towards a brighter future. The Soda Springs community is an example of what's possible when a community is motivated to address its challenges and opportunities.  SVS APA will celebrate the award winners at their Annual Awards program, held in January 2018.   

For more information about the Soda Springs Area Plan please visit our website or contact the Plan's author, Patrick Dobbs, Senior Planner at (530) 265-1423.

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Ten Nevada County Employees Recognized as CSAC "Credentialed County Senior Executive"

​Ten leaders from the County of Nevada have been recognized for being a "Credentialed County Senior Executive" as they completed a series of course work from the California State Association of Counties (CSAC). The CSAC Institute for Excellence in County Government issues this Credential after participants complete a diverse series of classes designed to educate County leaders on governmental operations and sound management practices.  This latest group of participants from the County of Nevada pushes the total number of local leaders who have received the Credential to 67 recipients, the most of all California Counties.  New recipients include:  Jill Blake, Public Health; Kelly Carpenter, Social Services; Angelina Coffey, Probation; Nancy Haffey, Human Resources; David Huff, Environmental Health; Julie Patterson-Hunter, Clerk of the Board; Susan Kadera, Human Resources; Nicholas Ready, Social Services; Homero Romero, Agricultural Commission; and Randal Yun, Environmental Health.

Congratulations to you all!

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Penn Valley Area Municipal Advisory Council (MAC) Now Accepting Applications

​On March 28, 2017, the Board of Supervisors adopted Resolution 17-144 creating the Penn Valley Area Municipal Advisory Council (MAC) with an effective date of July 1, 2017, as a pilot program for two years. The MAC is a formal council that is established for the sole purpose of advising the District IV Supervisor, the Planning Department and Board of Supervisors on development and land use issues that are located within District IV boundaries that are within either the Western Gateway Parks and Recreation District or the Penn Valley Fire District.

The County is now accepting applications for MAC members that represent a good cross-section of the community. This includes community residents that are located within the MAC boundaries including, but not limited to, the areas of Penn Valley, Rough & Ready and Lake Wildwood, and representatives of the business community, real estate and agriculture sectors are encouraged to apply. The term for membership is two years and applications will be accepted until June 5, 2017. Applicants will need to pick up an application at  the Clerk of the Board's Office at the Eric Rood Administrative Center, Second Floor, 950 Maidu Avenue, Nevada City, or find the application on the Clerk of the Board website

If you are interested in serving on the MAC and have any questions, please contact the Clerk of the Board at clerkofboard@co.nevada.ca.us or by calling (530) 265-1480. The maximum number of MAC members will be 7. Once applications have been received and individuals are selected by District IV Supervisor Hank Weston, their appointment will be approved by the Board of Supervisors. Applicants must be a permanent resident located within the MAC boundaries.

Please note that members will be required to file a Financial Disclosure Statement and comply with any and all applicable laws. All newly appointed and reappointed members will be required to sign an Oath of Office prior to serving.

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New Assistant District Attorney - Chris Walsh

Christopher Walsh has been selected as the new Assistant District Attorney. 

Christopher graduated cum laude from Excelsior College in Albany New York. He received his J.D. from Oak Brook College of Law graduating cum laude in 2004. He was admitted to the Bar in 2004. 

Mr. Walsh has worked as a deputy district attorney at the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office since 2013. He has been assigned to the sexual assault unit and most recently was on the homicide unit. He has tried numerous serious and high profile jury trials. In 2015, he was the prosecutor who tried the cold case against Christopher Holland; who was convicted and sentenced to life without parole for the 1983 rape and murder of Cynthia Munoz.

Mr. Walsh worked as a prosecutor in Fresno County from 2007 to 2013. Most notably he was assigned to the gang unit and tried many difficult and complex jury trials. One such trial was a highly-publicized case against 10 gang members from Arizona who committed a series of home invasion robberies throughout the Central Valley. While at the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office in 2008 and again in 2012, he was chosen as the Office’s Prosecutor of the Year. From 2005 to 2006, he worked as a prosecutor in the Kings County District Attorney’s Office.

As a 17-year-old in his first year of law school he was diagnosed with cancer. Spurred by his successful fight to survive, he became involved in the American Cancer Society and has been a keynote speaker at different Relay for Life events. He was awarded the Courage Award by the American Cancer Society for being an inspiration to others throughout his battle with cancer. As a child, Mr. Walsh’s missionary parents helped in orphanages and established food programs for children in El Salvador and Guatemala. Mr. Walsh and his wife Hannah are parents to three young children and are looking forward to moving into their new home and becoming a part of the Nevada County community.

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Caltrans 174 Improvements Open House

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will be holding an Open House to present information for a project that proposes to improve safety along state Route 174 in Nevada County from Maple Way to Your Bet Road.  the project would include realigning curves, widening shoulders, adding a left-turn lane at Greenhorn Access Road and improving the Clear Recovery Zone (CRZ) on State Route 174 from post mile 2.7 to post mile 4.6 in Nevada County.

This project proposed to help reduce the number and severity of collisions within this segment of State Route 174.  This project is scheduled to go to construction during the summer of 2019.

The Open House will be held on May 24, 2017 from 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. at Chicago Park Elementary School located at 15725 Mt. Olive Road, Grass Valley, CA.

The Open House will allow area residents, local officials, Caltrans staff and other interested persons to exchange information about the proposed project.  The public will be able to view project map[s and plans that have incorporated changes resulting from submitted public comments.  Information about the project's schedule, as well as right of way acquisition will be available.  The public is invited to drop by anytime during the open house.

Services for individuals with disabilities can be provided such as sign language interpreting, real-time captioning, note takers, reading or writing assistance.  To obtain such services, please call Deanna Shoopman, Public Information Officer, Caltrans District 3 at (530) 741-4509 (TTY) or (530) 741-4572.

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Mosquito Season and Outdoor Activities

Spring and Summer bring great weather for outdoor activities along with mosquitoes. Our winter provided plenty of rainfall that created a multitude of breeding sites for mosquitoes and the expectation is the mosquito population will be very prolific this year. It is very important to protect yourself when outside and always practice the “Three D’s”:

  1. DEET - Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535 according to label instructions. Repellents keep the mosquitoes from biting. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that, if you choose DEET, to use a product with 10% to 30% DEET for children 2 months of age and older and not to use DEET for those under 2 months.
  2. DAWN AND DUSK - The mosquitoes that transmit West Nile Virus (WNV) bite in the early morning and evening, so it is important to wear proper clothing and repellent if outside during these times. Make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep out mosquitoes. Repair or replace screens with tears or holes.
  3. DRAIN - Mosquitoes lay their eggs on standing water. Eliminate or drain all sources of standing water around homes and properties, including buckets, old car tires, rain gutters, birdbaths, and pet bowls. If a swimming pool is not being properly maintained, please contact the local mosquito and vector control agency.

West Nile Virus is a virus spread by infected mosquitoes. WNV first appeared in California in 2003 and it is here to stay. Highest activity is during the summer and fall months, however, it is present year round. The mosquito that transmits Zika virus has not been detected in Nevada County and it is different from mosquitoes that transmit WNV.

Who is affected? Anyone can be bitten, but people who are 50 years in age or older, or who are immune-suppressed or living with a chronic health condition are at higher risk for severe illness and death.

Symptoms: Most people who become infected do not develop any symptoms. One in five will develop a fever with other symptoms such as headache, body aches, vomiting, diarrhea or rash. Less than 1% of cases develop into a serious neurologic illness. The symptoms can last for weeks or months.

Please call Nevada County Environmental Health Department, Vector Control at (530) 265-1500 for more information on mosquito fish, general vector questions and to report concerns with mosquito breeding sites. For additional resources and information visit the West Nile.ca.gov website for information regarding West Nile Virus, statistics, reports and preventative measures.

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Caltrans Traffic Alert

Caltrans is alerting motorists that two on-ramps and one exit ramp to and from westbound Interstate 80 (I-80) in Truckee will be closed Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, May 23-25, from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to perform concrete grinding work on the ramps as well as freeway lanes. The on-ramps to westbound I-80 to be closed are from Highway 89 just north of the freeway, as well as the ramp from Donner Pass Road near the Coachland round-about. The off-ramp to be closed is the Central Truckee exit (# 186) to Donner Pass Road.

The repair work will also require alternating lane closures of the #1 (left), #2 (middle) and #3 (right) lanes on WB I-80 between the Highway 89 interchange and the Central Truckee exit.

Motorists should anticipate local street congestion as well as delays on westbound I-80 resulting from the lane and ramp closures. Allowing for extra travel time is recommended.

Visit Caltrans' “QuickMap” for current road conditions. A mobile version is also available. Motorists also can use the California Highway Information Network automated phone service by calling 1-800-427-7623.

Motorists are urged to be “Be Work Zone Alert” and to “Slow for the Cone Zone.” Caltrans will issue updates on Twitter and on Facebook at CaltransDistrict 3.

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Reclamation Announces Safety of Dams Drilling Program at Prosser Creek Dam

The Bureau of Reclamation will be performing a Safety of Dams drilling program at Prosser Creek Dam to evaluate the ability of the dam to resist large earthquakes. Prosser Creek Dam and Reservoir, part of Reclamation's Truckee Storage Project, are located on Prosser Creek about 1 mile east of Truckee, California, and 27 miles west of Reno, Nevada.

Prosser Creek Dam is located in a seismically active area. The drilling program will help analyze the potential loss of strength, known as liquefaction that could result in a dam failure during an extreme earthquake. Reclamation will continue drilling at Prosser Creek Dam throughout the summer of 2017 to collect additional data which will be used to assess the likelihood of liquefaction and response of the dam.

Currently, Prosser Creek Reservoir is being held at approximately 9,000 acre-feet of storage and 5,701 feet of elevation for flood control purposes. The low reservoir elevation is not related to the potential dam safety concern and is expected to begin rising as the spring runoff season develops.

For additional information about the exploration program, please contact Todd Hill at (916) 978-5328 (TTY 800- 877-8339) or thill@usbr.gov. For additional information regarding reservoir operations, please contact Scott Schoenfeld at (775) 884-8351 or sschoenfeld@usbr.gov.

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Preparing for Natural Disasters

This third week of Building Safety Month is dedicated to outreach and information regarding "Manage the Damage – Preparing for Natural Disasters".  Making sure your family is prepared for any natural disaster is important. Below are some of the steps you can take to prepare your family and protect your home from natural disasters. Your actions can ensure that no matter what Mother Nature brings you, your family and your community will be resilient. Now that we are heading into the summer months, now is the time to get prepared prior to fire season and the following winter months.

Here are a few tips to follow from the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes – (FLASH®) when preparing your family for any emergency.

  • Develop a family disaster plan that includes a list of food and water supplies needed for each member of your family and supplies for your pets. Make copies of important documents like insurance policies, the deed to your home, and other personal papers, important phone numbers and a home inventory. Create a checklist of important things to do before, during and after a disaster.
  • Review your evacuation route and emergency shelter locations with your family. Options for evacuation would include staying with friends and relatives, seeking commercial lodging, or staying in a mass care facility operated by disaster relief groups in conjunction with local authorities.
  • Taking shelter is critical in times of disaster. Sheltering in place is appropriate when conditions require that you seek protection in your home, place of employment, or other location where you are when disaster strikes.

Review your plan regularly. If you make changes that affect the information in your disaster plan, update it immediately.

For complete information about preparing for natural disasters and ways to protect your property from natural disasters you can visit the International Code Council's website, the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH) website or the FEMA website with information on the America's PrepareAthon.  Please fell free to contact the Nevada County Building department via email at Building.Dept@co.nevada.ca.us or give them a call at (530) 265-1222.

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Gold Country Stage Free Fare Days May 25th - 27th 2017

​County of Nevada Transit Services has received a Low Carbon Transit Operations Program air quality grant that provides public transit funding assistance for projects that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve mobility. 

To support this objective, Gold Country Stage will provide system wide “free fare days” on all routes May 25-27, 2017. Routes will be operating their normal schedules, days, and times from 5:50 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. on Thursday and Friday and from 7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, with free fares for all.

Additionally, for folks attending the “Strawberry Musical Festival,” the Route 3 fairgrounds bus stop on Brighton Street and McCourtney Road (near Gate 8) provides access for travel to and from the event on an hourly basis. Enjoy the ride and the music vibe! Dump the pump, ride the bus!

Bus schedules are available in the Gold Country Stage Rider’s Guide, or please call the office at (530) 477-0103 x 0 for travel planning information.

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