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Post office spared for now

A plan to possibly close the small post office in downtown Sonora may have hit delays, as a formal proposal has still not been released to the public.

U.S. Postal Service spokesman Gus Ruiz told The Union Democrat on Wednesday that the agency has put a hold on posting any new closure proposals for the time being. The Postal Service was scheduled to release a formal proposal for the future of the postal station in Old Town Sonora on Stewart Street by the end of January.


Public school enrollments continue to drop

School enrollment continues to decline in the Mother Lode, meaning less funding and signaling that young families are moving out of the area, according to school and county officials. 

Tuolumne County’s enrollment dropped from 6,245 in the 2012-2013 year to 5,888 in the 2013-2014 year.


Old town Angels designated ‘historic’

Angels Camp City Council members voted Tuesday night to rezone 86 downtown parcels and create an official “historic commercial district,” ensuring the city’s Main Street preserves its historic character. 

The rezone brings the city in compliance with Angels Camp’s General Plan, a long-range planning document adopted five years ago.


Drought emergency declared; aid on way

Tuolumne County leaders called for a state of emergency Tuesday due to the ongoing drought, while federal officials promised aid to farmers and ranchers.

The Tuolumne County emergency declaration is the second to take place locally in the past six months, as the county Board of Supervisors declared a local emergency in response to the Rim Fire as well.


County delays pot rules

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The Board of Supervisors chambers was once again filled with people interested in the marijuana ordinance debate. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copright 2014.
The Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday delayed a decision on a proposal that would have banned outdoor cultivation of medical cannabis, as well as medical pot dispensaries and collectives.

The five-member board unanimously voted to table the ordinance until as late as November, after it will be clear whether the state’s 2014 election ballot will include a measure to legalize recreational use of the substance. 


GCSD urges water saving

Groveland Community Services District is asking customers to reduce water use by 10 percent, joining a number of other California water agencies also calling for conservation.

On Monday, GCSD’s Board of Directors unanimously voted to implement the Phase 1 water-shortage contingency plan, with plans to possibly consider enacting mandatory restrictions in March.


Hatler tenants face eviction

Dozens of people in Jamestown could be displaced if a large, outstanding sewer bill isn’t paid by their landlord in the coming days.

Officials with the sewer provider and the county building department informed residents of 15 units late last week that their sewer will be cut off sometime between Feb. 12 and 14 if the property owner is not current on the sewer bills. According to the sanitary district, those bills total about $38,000.


Tuolumne County corgis, terrier head to big NY contest

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Three Tuolumne County dogs will compete in the 138th annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show next week in New York. The dogs and their owners are (from left): Blossom Scott-Heim and Jeff Heim, of Jamestown, and their dog, Bowie, 3, and Wes and Maggi Wittman, of Columbia, and their dogs, Jesse, 2, and Fancy, 3. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2014.
Three Tuolumne County dogs will compete in the 138th annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show next week in New York.

Longtime handler Jeff Heim, of Jamestown, will show two corgis owned by veterinarian Wes Wittman and his wife, Maggi Wittman, of Columbia.

 


County pot law meeting Tuesday

Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing Tuesday on a controversial medical pot ordinance.

The proposed rule would limit the growing of medical marijuana to indoor spaces, cap the size of growing operations, and ban dispensaries and collectives.

 


Well owners threatened by drought, too

While much of the focus during the current drought has been on public water agencies, experts say it remains to be seen how much of an effect the dry weather will have on private well systems.

Thousands of residents in Tuolumne and Calaveras counties get their water from private wells. If the drought continues, the number of wells that run dry will depend on a number of factors, said Calaveras County Environmental Health Director Brian Moss.

 


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