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Drought expo planned for October 18-19

A free, two-day conference next month in Sonora aims to help Tuolumne County residents understand the drought and how to be more efficient with water.

The “Building a Water Use Efficient Community” conference and expo will be held Oct. 18 and 19 in the Creekside Building at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds. 

Public input sought for Sonora ‘vision’

PUBLIC MEETING: Vision Sonora Planning Committee, 2 p.m. Thursday, City Hall, 94 N. Washington St., Sonora. 

Sonora city planners are encouraging members of the public to attend a meeting Thursday where they can provide input to help establish a priority list of projects and programs proposed as part of the “Vision Sonora” downtown revitalization plan.

The Vision Sonora Committee will make a recommendation on a prioritized list of 19 projects and eight programs for the council to consider at a future meeting.


Weather advisory

The National Weather Service this morning issued an advisory warning drivers of possible highway chain controls and mountain pass closures due to snow.

Until 11 pm, a possibility of snow is forecast at elevations above 8000 feet. This would include Sonora Pass and Ebbets Pass.

Drivers are urged to carry chains in case of chain restrictions, and to check road conditions before heading out.

Road conditions can be found online at dot.ca.gov. 


Assessor, TUD voter forum set

The Tuolumne County Chamber of Commerce will host a “candidates night” at 6 p.m. Tuesday, in the Board of Supervisors Chambers on the fourth floor of the county administrative building at 2 S. Green St., Sonora.

Candidates expected to attend include Mike Dambacher and Kaenan Whitman, who are running for Tuolumne County assessor-recorder, as well as the 11 candidates vying for three seats on the Tuolumne Utilities District Board of Directors.

Summerville stadium to open for biz

The Summerville Union High School Board of Education on Wednesday approved rules for public use of its nearly-complete $4.1 renovated stadium. 

The stadium work — including a new track, field and bleachers and renovation of the snack shack — is the first project completed using the district’s $8 million Measure H, passed in 2012.

Challenge students anything but bored

Belleview Elementary School students Jacob Schader, 14 (left), and Ryan Dunlap, 14, both of Sonora, carry the skyscraper they built for the Global Cardboard Challenge back to class Thursday. Jesse Jones / Union Democrat, Copyright 2014.
More than 400 Tuolumne County students will participate in a global imaginative building event called the Global Cardboard Challenge in October at Sonora’s new InnovationLab.

The event, locally spearheaded by Columbia College science teacher Glen White, was created three years ago in Los Angeles after filmmaker Nirvan Mullick chanced upon a 9-year-old boy building a mock arcade out of cardboard boxes at his father’s store. 

Fewer people register to vote

Voter registration in both Tuolumne and Calaveras counties has declined since 2010, while the rest of the state has remained mostly flat.

Registration is down about 7 percent in Tuolumne County and 5 percent in Calaveras County from the 2010 midterm election, according to statistics released this month by the Secretary of State’s office.

Yosemite spots reopened after fire

Yosemite National Park announced Friday that most of the area closed because of the Meadow Fire has been reopened.

Tracking of bears goes high tech

National Park Service wildlife managers will soon be able to map and monitor the movement of black bears in Yosemite National Park thanks to a $70,000 grant from the Yosemite Conservancy.

The money will purchase GPS collars that for the first time will help wildlife managers track the park’s black bears beyond Yosemite Valley.

Calaveras water use down by 22 percent

Calaveras County Water District officials announced this week that customers have reduced water usage by 22 percent.

That percentage compares last month’s districtwide water usage to August 2013. 

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