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Money trickles to judge candidates

Although updated campaign finance reports are not due until next month, a few candidates have made recent filings with the Calaveras County Elections Office. 

Contributions must be reported within 24 hours if $1,000 or more is received from a single source, said Elections Coordinator Rebecca Turner. 


TUD to answer grand jury

PUBLIC MEETING: Tuolumne Utilities District Board of Directors, 2 p.m., Tuesday, TUD Board Room, 18885 Nugget Blvd., Sonora.

The Tuolumne Utilities District Board of Directors at Tuesday’s meeting will review responses to criticism made in the 2013-14 Tuolumne County Grand Jury report.

District General Manager Tom Scesa has prepared responses to the 31 recommendations made by the grand jury in its latest annual report. A number of the suggestions focused on the district’s policies governing the TUD Board of Directors.


Calaveras Sheriff asks county for new cars

PUBLIC MEETING: Calaveras County Board of Supervisors, 9 a.m. Tuesday, Board Chambers, 891 Mountain Ranch Road, San Andreas.


The Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office is requesting the county Board of Supervisors at its Tuesday meeting authorize the purchase of three new fully equipped patrol vehicles.

The cost for three 2015 Ford Expeditions outfitted with emergency and radio equipment totals $187,631. 

Race for assessor’s office is heating up

The Tuolumne County assessor-recorder’s race remains the closest local contest in a relatively slow election year for the county.

Mike Dambacher held a slight lead in fundraising over Kaenan Whitman, according to campaign finance reports for the period covering May 18 to June 30. Updated reports from all candidates running for office in the Nov. 4 general election are not due until Oct. 6, according to the Tuolumne County Elections Office.

No injuries reported in Hyde Street fire

A Phoenix Lake-area home was damaged and a family saved in a house fire Thursday afternoon.

The fire was reported at 4:18 p.m. on the 21000 block of Hyde Street.

Amador asks CCWD for Moke River $

Amador Water Agency officials are asking Calaveras County Water District leaders to consider contributing to the costs AWA incurred to “defend regional water interests from the potential impacts of the Mokelumne River Wild and Scenic designation legislation,” CCWD staff said. 

Although no formal cost-sharing agreement was in place, AWA is asking agencies that it partnered with to help cover its costs of more than $130,000. Using a suggested amount of 28 percent, CCWD’s portion is estimated at $36,686. 

Claims against church pile up

The Diocese of Stockton received 34 new claims of alleged sexual abuse by clergy members in advance of last month’s deadline for filing such claims in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. 

In a statement Tuesday, the diocese said that all information about the claims is confidential by court order. Diocese spokeswoman Sister Terry Davis said, “The court has required confidentiality about the claims, so we really are not allowed to speak about anything.”

Common Core rollout: Mother Lode schools embrace new standards

Columbia Elementary School students (from left) Trenton Gray, 5, Brodie Rodriguez, 5, and Natalie Okelsrud, 4, use iPads to learn math Thursday. Jesse Jones / Union Democrat. Copyright 2014.
California this fall finalized the roll out of its new “Common Core” content standards for public school instruction and, despite some bumps and lingering criticisms, Mother Lode school officials say the initiative has thus far gone well. 

The goal of the new language arts and math standards are college and career readiness, and were implemented nationwide with pressure from the federal government —  a sore point with some groups.

King Fire smokes settles over foothills

An air quality health alert has been issued through Saturday for Tuolumne and Calaveras counties due to smoke from the King Fire in El Dorado County.

There are no fires in the immediate area, however air quality levels in the area are expected to be unhealthy for sensitive groups, according to Dr. Todd Stolp, Tuolumne County health officer. Children, elderly, and people with health conditions are more susceptible to the smoke.

The smoke may worsen and is expected to last “at least” through Saturday, Stolp said.


Crystal Falls fire

Firefighters are on scene of a house fire in Crystal Falls.

The fire was reported at 4:18 p.m. on the 21000 block of Hyde St.

Cal Fire dispatchers didn't have details on the nature or extent of the fire damage, however, it didn't appear anyone was injured.



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