Monday, 22 July 2024


LAKE COUNTY – Due to the below average amount of rainfall during the past two years, the water level on Clear Lake is very low, and it's creating dangerous conditions for boaters, officials reported on Friday.

Boaters should exercise caution when navigating in the areas of Clearlake Oaks, Cache Creek and in the general area of the entrance to the Rodman Slough, according to Capt. James Bauman of the Lake County Sheriff's Office.

Bauman said that during the past week, the Sheriff’s Marine Patrol Unit has received approximately five requests for assistance from boaters that have run aground and become stuck in the shallow water near the Rodman Slough.

In each case the sheriff’s office could not provide the assistance requested, as the shallow water extends over a quarter of a mile out into the lake in this area, Bauman said.

Stranded boaters were forced to get out of their boats and push or pull their boat out into deeper water. Bauman said that on two such calls, the sheriff’s patrol boat could only get within about 600 yards of the stranded boater before it, too, was hitting the bottom.

The sheriff's office recommend that all boaters be aware of the shallow water in the general vicinity of the Rodman Slough and stay clear of that area.

Boaters who fail to stay clear of this area and consequently get stranded aground may not rely on the Sheriff’s Marine Patrol to assist with a courtesy tow, Bauman said.

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MIDDLETOWN – If you see a lot of people dressed up in 1970s clothing and headed to Cobb this Saturday, it isn't just your imagination or a Halloween flashback but a fundraiser for a good cause.

Lake County International Charter School (LCICS) will host its third annual Live & Give Celebration and Auction from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. this Saturday, Nov. 7, at Moore Family Winery, 11990 Bottle Rock Road on Cobb Mountain.

This year's theme is “1970s Flashback” – attendees are invited to wear their funkiest 70s clothing or cocktail attire.

Tickets are $25 per person. Although most of the school's fundraisers are for families, organizers said the Live & Give event is only for those 21 and over.

“This is definitely our main event,” said Valerie Moberg, secretary of the school's charter council or board.

She said the event isn't just for parents. “We really want to share who we are with the community.”

LCICS was founded five years ago, said Moberg. Today it has about 100 students in kindergarten through eighth grade, and five teachers.

The school's goal, said Moberg, is to create lifelong learners through the International Baccalaureate methodology, which isn't book-based. Rather, it teaches children to love learning so they're productive citizens of the world.

“There's a very international aspect to it,” Moberg said.

LCICS is a public school, and the only site-based charter school in Lake County, Moberg said.

“We are completely tuition-free, just like any other public school,” she said.

This year the school marked some important milestones, including posting a 19-point Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) score improvement, raising it to 739, and a 100-point jump in its Academic Performance Index, bringing it to 839 points. That 100-point leap was second only to Konocti Unified's Blue Heron school countywide.

In addition, the Western Association of Schools has accredited the school, which also received authorization from the International Baccalaureate World School, the school reported.

Since LCICS was founded, the number of charter schools across California has nearly tripled.

Approximately 809 charter schools with 341,000 students now operate around the state, according to the California Charter Schools Association.

In the 2003-04 fiscal year, there were 382 charter schools, according to the office of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is seeking to lift a cap on the number of charter schools allowed in the state as part of a legislation package that would make the state eligible for $4.35 billion in competitive federal Race to the Top funds.

This fall alone, 88 new charter schools – with 56,000 students – have opened, accounting for the largest single-year enrollment increase in history, the California Charter Schools Association reported.

One in every six charter schools across the nation operates in California. There are 4,900 charter schools educating 1.5 million children across 39 states and the District of Columbia, according to figures provided by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.

Moberg said LCICS gets funding from the state based on attendance and enrollment, similar to how other public schools are funded.

“We've definitely been hit by the budget cuts just like all the other schools,” she said.

What's different for charters schools, however, is that facilities present a large cost, since they can't float bonds to buy or build schools. “So we have to rely on what the state gives us and donations from the community,” shes said.

The school conducts several fundraisers already – spaghetti feeds and booths at events – and is adding more. The drawing for one of them, a raffle for a side of beef, will be held at the Live & Give event. Individual classes also hold car washes and other fundraisers, she added.

Tickets to the Live & Give fundraiser can be purchased at the LCICS Office at 15872 Armstrong St., or by contacting the school at 707-963-3063 or by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . D’s Coffee & Tea Shop, 21187 Calistoga Road in Middletown, also is selling tickets.

Tickets also will be available at the door, Moberg said.

The ticket price a complimentary cup of micro-brewed ale donated by the Mount St. Helena Brewing Co., 1970s-themed finger foods created by Chic Le Chef in Hidden Valley Lake, music by local DJ Kevi Kev of KMH Productions, dancing, and both silent and live auctions. Moore Family wines will be available for purchase by the glass or the bottle.

For more information, or to donate to the live or silent auctions, call the school at 707-987-3063 or visit its Web site at .

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at and on Facebook at .

LAKE COUNTY – Lake County Public Health officials reported Tuesday that increased visits to local health providers for influenza-like illness are indicative of the presence of the H1N1 Influenza A virus.

The news comes a day after health officials confirmed the first H1N1-related death in the county – a middle-aged man who died in the middle of last month, as Lake County News has reported.

Like counties throughout the state, influenza activity is widespread in Lake County, and the overwhelming majority of it is the new H1N1 strain, officials reported.

Concern and frustration have recently mounted as the race to manufacture and distribute the vaccine has not been as fast as originally hoped and predicted, according to Health Officer Dr. Karen Tait.

“Vaccination is our most effective weapon against influenza,” said Tait.

Since very small amounts of vaccine have been delivered to Lake County so far, it has been used to vaccinate target groups recommended by the Centers for Disease Control, Tait's office reported.

Formulations of the vaccine developed for use by pregnant women and children younger than age 3 years – two groups at increased risk for influenza complications – have not yet arrived. Lake County Public Health and the local health care community are working together to coordinate vaccination efforts.

So far, a total of 1,200 doses of vaccine have been delivered to Lake County.

“For a population of approximately 65,000 people, that is a very small amount,” say Dr. Tait. We are currently working to vaccinate emergency medical services personnel and front-line health providers who treat influenza patients on a daily basis.”

As frustrating as the seeming delays in vaccination production are, Dr. Tait pointed out that these delays are unavoidable and need to be viewed in the context of history.

“Not too many years ago, we would have considered this rapid development of a vaccine to be a scientific breakthrough. Even now, the speed of vaccine production is limited by factors beyond anyone’s control – you can’t always rush ‘Mother Nature.’ We are still fortunate to have any

vaccine to use just six months after the appearance of a new strain.”

Lake County Public Health expects additional vaccine to come into the county – both to local Public Health as well as health providers who have requested supplies – over the coming weeks and months.

The delivery schedule and quantities of vaccine being shipped remain unpredictable, so patience on the part of health providers and the Lake County community is needed.

“I wish we could be more specific with how this will roll out,” says Dr. Tait, “but we’re all in the same boat. Rest assured, though, that we are poised to move forward quickly with vaccination activities as soon as supplies arrive.”

In the meantime, good infection control measures are of paramount importance. These include covering

coughs and sneezes, staying home when ill, and regularly cleaning frequently-touched surfaces.

Illness from the Pandemic 2009 (H1N1) Influenza A virus is mild in the majority of cases and can usually be treated at home like other common viral infections.

However, people of all ages with chronic health conditions, pregnant women, and very young children may experience more severe forms of the infection and should seek medical advice early, if they become ill.

Public Health authorities are now statistically tracking only confirmed influenza patients who require

treatment in intensive care units and deaths.

To date, only one resident of Lake County has required intensive care for confirmed H1N1 infection and there has been one death. As laboratory test results become available, the number of Lake County cases is expected to increase.

Because laboratory testing is not recommended in all cases of influenza illness, there are many more cases in the community than statistics indicate.

Information about vaccination opportunities will be provided as soon as it becomes available.

For more information, visit and .

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LAKEPORT – Wow! The attendance numbers at the Soper-Reese are proof that we are definitely on the map.

We have had record turnouts for our last two shows and the ones coming up are going to be as popular. The community has really gotten behind this wonderful venue and we really thank you for keeping the arts alive in Lake County especially in these challenging times.

It is also important to have big numbers at the venue because it is so nice to see about 200 people walking out on the sidewalk in downtown Lakeport at 9 p.m. or 10 p.m. on a Saturday. It helps our local businesses, too.

The newest shows we put on stage were completely different from any other shows we have presented before. Instead of a play or musical concert, we worked with Operation Tango Mike and the Redbud Audubon Society to bring in Brian Shul and Paul Bannick.

These two experts in their field of photography entertained their audiences with beautiful photographs and compelling stories very well told. You could tell that they are passionate about their lives and enjoy sharing their activities with everyone.

There will be many more of these pictorial spectaculars to come. We were able to stage these events by way of a borrowed projector from CPS Country Air Real Estate. Thank you very much, Phil Smoley!

We are now searching for a permanent projector for the theater in order to have more slide shows and to run movies. Yes think of it, classic and independent art films in Lakeport!

We have taken our Web site live as of last month. At you now can keep up-to-date about shows that are scheduled for the theater, see pictures of past events and sign up for our emails. You can leave us comments and feedback about how we are doing. We would like to get more information about the types of shows you would like to see presented on our stage.

There is always excitement around an upcoming production. Rehearsals for "The Dastardly Doctor Devereaux" are going strong and the players, led by director Carol Dobusch, have been working hard twice a week getting everything perfect for the December opening. This musical melodrama will be a great hit for the holiday season. You will be able to cheer on the hero and boo the villain. A wonderful time is guaranteed for all ages.

I am going to be directing our second production of "A Christmas Carol" on Dec. 19 this year. We will be broadcasting live from the stage on community sponsored radio station KPFZ.

For those of you who did not share this unique show with us last year, we read the story live with an announcer, a narrator, seven voice artists and three sound effects artists doing everything live.

Last year's production was very popular and lots of fun to perform. Be sure to set aside the date, Dec. 19 and, by the way, it will be FREE for everybody. This is a little holiday present from our sponsors, KPFZ and the Soper-Reese to thank you all for your support of the arts in our community.

We have posted times for everything online for you to stay connected with us at .

Thanks from the Soper-Reese, your community theater.

Bert Hutt is artistic director of the Soper-Reese Community Theatre in Lakeport.



THE GEYSERS – The US Geological Survey reported a 3.0-magnitude earthquake near The Geysers Wednesday afternoon.


The site later was downgrade to a 2.9.

The earthquake occurred at 3:18 p.m. at a depth of 1.3 miles, the US Geological Survey reported.

It was centered two miles northeast of The Geysers, three miles west southwest of Cobb and six miles northwest of Anderson Springs, according to US Geological Survey data.

Shake reports came from Sacramento and Magalia.

A 3.6-magnitude quake occurred on Oct. 30 two miles east of The Geysers and four miles west northwest of Anderson Springs, as Lake County News has reported.

Anderson Springs residents reported that earthquake caused a leak on one of the community's main water lines.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at and on Facebook at .

LOWER LAKE – A noted car builder died this past weekend as the result of a vehicle crash.

Maynard Albertson, 69, of Sonoma died in a Saturday morning crash south of the city of Sonoma, according to Napa California Highway Patrol Officer Randall Wayne.

Wayne said Albertson was driving in a 2002 kit car made to resemble a 1930s-era vehicle when the crash happened.

Albertson was driving at an unknown speed southbound on Highway 12 north of Shainsky Road when the car went off the east roadway edge and collided with a dirt embankment, said Wayne.

The crash caused Albertson to be ejected from the car and he sustained fatal injuries, said Wayne.

Wayne said Albertson wasn't wearing a seat belt, and it appeared that none had been installed in the kit car, despite the fact that they were required.

Albertson was listed as head of the design department for the Lower Lake-based Konocti Motor Co., which builds vintage-style project cars. The company did not return a call seeking comment.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at and on Facebook at .

SAN FRANCISCO – Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) has announced an agreement with Geysers Power Co. LLC, a subsidiary of Calpine Corp., to increase and extend the utility's purchases of renewable geothermal power.

PG&E currently has two power purchase agreements with Geysers totaling about 375 megawatts (MW) per year, with enough renewable energy to meet the needs of more than 450,000 average homes.

Those agreements expire between the end of 2012 and the end of 2014.

The new deal, if approved by the California Public Utilities Commission, would extend the term for Geysers energy through 2021.

Total capacity is expected to increase about 50 MW to a total of 425 MW from 2010 through 2017, dropping to a total of about 250 MW from 2018 through 2021.

Fong Wan, senior vice president for energy procurement at PG&E, said the company is committed to making geothermal energy an important part of its growing renewables portfolio for many years to come.

PG&E officials said geothermal power is a particularly valuable renewable resource because it is highly dependable. Available around the clock, it is less affected by weather, seasons or other factors that create technical challenges for managing some other kinds of renewable power.

The Geysers steamfield runs across a portion of southern Lake County and into Sonoma County.

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LAKEPORT – Authorities have made a second arrest in connection with an Oct. 20 shooting and beating of a Lakeport man, with more arrests expected.

Joshua Wandry, 35, of Rohnert Park Park was arrested Tuesday morning as part of the ongoing investigation into the alleged home invasion at the S. Main Street residence of Ronald Greiner, who was found shot, beaten and hogtied, as Lake County News has reported.

Capt. James Bauman of the Lake County Sheriff's Office said Wandry was arrested at his Adrian Drive home in Rohnert Park without incident following the execution of a search warrant that occurred just after 9 a.m. Tuesday.

The Lake County Sheriff’s Major Crimes Unit executed the search and arrest warrants with assistance from the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department and the Rohnert Park Police Department, Bauman said.

Already in custody in the case is 59-year-old Thomas Dudney, who was arrested on Oct. 21 at his Fulton home.

Dudney is facing numerous charges in the case, including premeditated attempted murder, aggravated mayhem, simple mayhem, torture, home invasion robbery in concert with another, first degree burglary with a person at home, assault with a firearm, assault with a blunt force object, assault likely to cause great bodily injury and serious battery, according to District Attorney Jon Hopkins.

Hopkins also filed special allegations against Dudney for allegedly inflicting great bodily injury and using a firearm. Three of the charges carry life terms.

On Tuesday Dudney was held to answer on all of the charges following a preliminary hearing, said Hopkins. Dudney returns to court for arraignment on Nov. 16.

Dudney, who has a lengthy criminal history, with several state prison terms, is being held in the Lake County Jail without bail.

Following Dudney's arrest the investigation into Greiner's assault had continued. Bauman said over the past two weeks investigators identified Wandry as another suspect and secured a $750,000 warrant for his arrest.

Hopkins said he is charging Wandry with the same 10 charges as have been filed against Dudney. He's also considering asking to have Wandry held without bail.

Wandry was booked at the Sonoma County Jail on a felony charge of attempted murder, Bauman said.

Bauman added that additional arrests are expected to be made as the investigation continues.

Hopkins said he isn't sure when Dudney's trial will take place, and whether or not Wandry will be tried jointly with him. The trial's timing will hinge partly on the completion of forensic testing.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at and on Facebook at .

LAKEPORT – A Windsor woman has become the third person to be arrested in connection with an alleged home invasion that resulted in the shooting and brutal beating of a Lakeport man.

Deborah Ann James, 46, was arrested just after midnight Thursday at her boyfriend's home in Santa Rosa, where authorities found her hiding in a closet, according to Capt. James Bauman of the Lake County Sheriff's Office.

James was identified early on as a person of interest in the case involving 49-year-old Ronald Greiner of Lakeport, who was found shot, beaten and hogtied outside of his S. Main Street home on Oct. 20, as Lake County News has reported.

On Wednesday, Lake County Sheriff's detectives were working to locate additional suspects and conduct further witness interviews in Sonoma County with the assistance of authorities there, Bauman said,

At around midnight Thursday the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department contacted an unidentified man, believed to be James’ boyfriend, at his home in Santa Rosa, and subsequently found James hiding in a closet there, Bauman said.

She's being held in the Lake County Jail on a charge of attempted murder, with bail set at $100,000.

James' arrest follows Tuesday's arrest of another suspect in the case, 35-year-old Joshua Wandry of Rohnert Park. Wandry is being held on $750,000 bail in the Sonoma County Jail, also charged with attempted murder.

The first person to be arrested for Greiner's shooting was 59-year-old Thomas Dudney of Fulton, who was taken into custody on Oct. 21.

Dudney's preliminary hearing in the case was held on Tuesday, at which time a judge ruled he would be held to answer on 10 charges – premeditated attempted murder, aggravated mayhem, simple mayhem, torture, home invasion robbery in concert with another, first degree burglary with a person at home, assault with a firearm, assault with a blunt force object, assault likely to cause great bodily injury and serious battery. He's also facing special allegations against Dudney for allegedly inflicting great bodily injury and using a firearm.

District Attorney Jon Hopkins said Wednesday he anticipated filing the same charges against Wandry.

Bauman said the Lake County Sheriff's Major Crimes Unit is continuing its investigation, and still more arrests are anticipated.

E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at and on Facebook at .

LAKE COUNTY – The warm daytime temperatures enjoyed in Lake County over the past several days thanks to a high pressure system will start to change Wednesday as cooler temperatures and a chance for showers return to the local forecast.

According to the National Weather Service in Sacramento, a low pressure system currently over the pacific will move towards the coast Wednesday, pushing in cooler temperatures and rain showers.

The main area of this weather system is predicted to head farther south, but a moist westerly flow will move inland spreading clouds and rain over much of interior Northern California including in to Lake County, the National Weather Service reported.

Wednesday's highs are expected to be 10 degrees cooler than on Tuesday, with highs in the mid- to upper-60s and increasing winds and cooler weather are on tap for Thursday and Friday, the National Weather Service said, with highs only reaching in to the mid-50s.

Chances for rain on Thursday increase as the day progresses to 40 percent overnight on Thursday, with a 40 percent, chance of rain during the day on Friday, according to the National Weather Service.

A slight chance of rain remains in the forecast throughout the weekend, with highs in the 50s and overnight lows in the 40s, according to the National Weather Service, with temperatures warming into early next week to the 60s.

For up to the minute weather, please see the home page at .

E-mail Terre Logsdon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Follow Lake County News on Twitter at and on Facebook at .

LAKE COUNTY – County health officials on Monday confirmed Lake County's first death from the H1N1 influenza.

Health Officer Dr. Karen Tait's office reported that the victim was a middle-aged man who died in mid-October after hospitalization with the pandemic H1N1 influenza virus.

Tait reported that health officials hadn't been able to count the man's death as official until definitive

laboratory test results were completed.

“We know that H1N1 is present throughout our community, as it is throughout the nation,” Tait said Monday, offering her condolences to the family.

The vast majority of those cases, Tait said, will include mild or moderate illness, with the patients recovering.

She said Lake County man who died had underlying health conditions that may have placed him at risk for severe H1N1 illness. The man died from secondary complications, Tait said.

So far, 249 H1N1 deaths have been reported statewide, with a total of 4,047 hospitalizations, according to the California Department of Public Health.

A vaccine for H1N1 has begun arriving in Lake and neighboring Mendocino County in limited supplies and isn't yet widely available, health officials from both counties reported Monday.

Lake County's first H1N1 flu case was confirmed in a 39-year-old woman in June, as Lake County News has reported.

Health officials continue to advise people to take the following precautions to avoid spreading the virus:

  • Stay home when you are sick with flu-like symptoms (fever and cough or sore throat).

  • Avoid close contact with others as much as possible (two arms lengths away).

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Cover your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing, and always wash your hands afterwards or use alcohol-based hand cleaners.

  • Wash your hands frequently.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.

Anyone experiencing flu-like symptoms should call their health care provider if they have severe

symptoms, trouble breathing, are pregnant, or have underlying medical conditions such as asthma, chronic disease, or neuromuscular disorders.

A tool to assist in self-evaluation of influenza symptoms can be found at . More

information about influenza also is available at .

Follow Lake County News on Twitter at and on Facebook at .

Upcoming Calendar

07.23.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
07.24.2024 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
ReCoverCA Homebuyer Assistance Workshop
07.27.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
07.30.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
08.03.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
08.06.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
08.10.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
08.13.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
08.17.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
08.20.2024 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park

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