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Body found in Columbia search area

The search for a missing woman has been called off after searchers found a dead woman in the Columbia search area.

At 8:25 a.m., Tuolumne County Search and Rescue reported finding a body inside the search area for missing Kathy Njirich Fiore, 63, of Southern California.


Rim Fire logging plan released


The U.S. Forest Service has given preliminary approval to a plan allowing logging in much of the area burned in last year's Rim Fire.


Calaveras board aims to improve veteran services

The need for improved services to Calaveras County military veterans was discussed Tuesday at the county Board of Supervisors meeting.

During a two-hour study session, county staffers went over what services are now offered, how they’re funded and what areas are lacking. 


Woman still missing from Columbia area

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office this morning continued to search for a missing 63-year-old woman last seen leaving a Columbia-area home.

Kathy Fiore left her family’s home on the 22000 block of Sawmill Flat Road at 11:15 a.m. Monday. She was last seen by a resident of the house, according to Sheriff’s Sgt. Scott Johnson.

 


Campus under construction

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The Manzanita Building at Columbia College is under renovation. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2014.
Columbia College students returned to school this week to the continuing construction of the central Manzanita building. 

The largest of the college’s original buildings houses most administration and student services, which have been scattered across campus since spring, when construction began. 


TUD moves ahead with reservoir plan

Reeling from an historic drought, Tuolumne Utilities District is taking steps to create the county’s first water-storage reservoir in decades.

The TUD board voted 5-0 Tuesday to move forward with plans to acquire 25 acres of land in Twain Harte from the Pacific Gas and Electric Co. where the district hopes to build the 350 acre-foot lake to ensure supplies for up to 40,000 county residents.


Napa quake’s impact felt by some in Calaveras County

A Vallecito winery that makes and stores its wine in Napa Valley lost the equivalent of about 900 bottles of wine in Sunday’s 6.0 earthquake. 

Even so, Helen Webster, co-owner of Four Winds Cellars, is grateful more damage wasn’t incurred.

 


Special education rift: Parents question moving programs to Twain Harte campus

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A group of parents including (back row, from left) Trinka Martin, of Sonora, Tamara Polley, of Tuolumne, and Teri Wilson, of Sonora, have signed an online petition opposing using the Black Oak Elementary School campus for special education students. Their children (front row, from left) Laila Martin, 10, Danner Poe, 10, and Adi Wilson, 7, would be affected by the proposal. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2014.
A group of parents has rallied against a proposal by the Tuolumne County Office of Education to purchase the Black Oak Elementary School campus to use for special education students. 

At the Office of Education’s last board meeting on Aug. 11, county Superintendent of Schools Joe Silva informed the board that he had been looking into the purchase of the Twain Harte School District’s Black Oak campus to provide a singular location for county special-needs students. Those students are now spread across individual school sites, and many must be transported elsewhere for specialty classes. Children from faraway homes like Groveland must get to class late and leave early to make scheduling work.


Bustling Labor Day weekend expected

Crowds of campers, hikers and boaters will likely flood the Mother Lode this weekend, even with the region feeling the effects of a historic drought and the Rim Fire.

Labor Day marks what is traditionally one of the most popular weekends of the year for tourism in Tuolumne and Calaveras counties. This year, reservoir levels are lower than usual because of the three-year drought gripping the state. And much of the Stanislaus National Forest is still off-limits due to the 400-square-mile fire that burned for months during last year’s Rim Fire.

 


Search for missing woman underway

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office is asking for information regarding a missing 63-year-old woman.

Kathy Fiore left a family home on the 22000 block of Sawmill Flat Road at 11:15 a.m. Monday and has not been seen since, according to Sheriff’s Sgt. Scott Johnson.


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