Forest fire economic Impacts
No vaccine exists for forest fires. Northern California’s Sierra have been broken and now we must try to pick up the pieces of this summer’s “flamdemic.” Those in urban areas who love to escape to the pine forests to camp may not realize how much these recent fires have cost those who live in Sierra towns.
Residents of Markleeville, Alpine County have seen firsthand what devastation has taken place and can only hope that the U.S. Forest Service will help to provide funding to offset economic losses. I’m sure the same is true for those hard hit by the Dixie, Caldor, Fawn, and other fires. Our Tamarack Fire started on July 4 from a lightning strike and smoldered until July 16 when it erupted into an inferno. While local firefighters, Search and Rescue and others had earlier noticed the risks of this fire, the Forest Service delayed until it was too late. Now we are left with charred forests all around. Grover Hot Springs and Campground, one of our largest tourist draws, has been closed since July. Markleeville’s one grocery store has been closed due to fire-caused power outages resulting in damaged floors from freezers. Bears have been wreaking havoc in town, with no habitat for food. They’ve broken into the local post office to find food in boxes for Pacific Crest Trail hikers, into the town store, into homes.
The Tamarack Fire resulted in an evacuation of the entire town of Markleeville on the day before the Death Ride, this County’s largest public serving event of the year. Miraculously, no one was hurt due to the swift action of our local Sheriffs and Search and Rescue who got all Death Ride attendees as well as residents out of the area. Cal Fire and local firefighters, and others did an amazing job of saving the entire community of Markleeville, with only three homes burned. However, we are left with charred forests all around as well as along Highway 89, the entrance to Markleeville, a designated “Scenic Highway.” How will this visual devastation be repaired?
With climate-change impacts already here, the Forest Service and other agencies need a thorough policy review. Letting fires in wilderness burn themselves out may be a good ecosystem approach in high, rocky terrain. But if adjoining areas are at risk, good judgment is needed in close coordination with State and local fire suppression agencies.
We are a low population county with over 95 percent of the land area in public ownership and provide amazing recreational opportunities (see Chamber of Commerce Visitor Guide). As soon as our National Forests are reopened, everyone should visit places still undamaged (e.g., Carson Pass, Blue Lakes area, Wolf Creek area, Luther Pass). Congress should consider legislation that would compensate communities damaged by fires from federal lands. With time, patience and hard work, we know that we will find recovery from this summer’s devastation.
Thanks for supporting Burgers 4 Badges
I wanted to thank the community for coming out and supporting our Burgers 4 Badges event again. Our most recent event took place on Sept. 11.
Five years ago, when law enforcement around the country was getting a lot of negative press, we thought that our local law enforcement was doing a great job and we wanted to “show them some love.” Jeanne Koerner in our office, came up with idea of an “appreciation party.” We came up with an event that would feature free food, live music and a chance for the community to mingle with local law enforcement and staff and it took off. Once word got out in the community that we were going to have the event, different organizations and the general public reached out and asked how they could help. Since we planned on paying for all expenses, we suggested donations so all the money donated would go directly to DCSO (via the Sheriff’s Advisory Council). The event has been co-sponsored by Kim Marcarelli from Sierra Pacific Mortgage, and it’s been a pleasure and a great success. This event has grown every year and this year we served 500 burgers in less than 2 hours. A huge thank you to Coco’s on Main for stepping up on short notice and providing the burgers. Also, a big thank you to The Lost Reverends for the great live music and generosity and Battle Born Cornhole for their generosity and support. Yes, we now have a Corn Hole tournament as part of the event.
Thank you to the great community we live in and to the following donors that helped us raise $15,000 this year; Guild Mortgage and Rush-Marshall Team, Sullivan Law, Tom Golston Roofing, Carson Valley Medical Center, Lawnmower Man, Nova Tile and Stone, PJs Liquor, Subway, Dr. Seyfried, Stewart Title, First American Title, Ticor Title, Loan Depot ,Northern Nevada Property Management, Brilliant Blinds & Shutters, R&S Optimum Offset, Stacey Trivitt at Carson Valley Allstate, Two Stone Slab & Tile, Marty's Appliance, Valley Christian Fellowship, West Ridge Homes.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Thirty-two years ago this month I married the love of my life, Laura Beth, who had been diagnosed earlier in the year with stage 3 breast cancer. Through the grace of our Lord she is still with us however many women we have met over the years have not survived. We have since been big supporters of breast cancer research in the attempt to discover a cure of this devastating disease.
Today, Thursday, during the Board of Commissioners meeting at the Historic Courthouse, I have been given the honor to issue a proclamation on behalf of the board in recognition of October as “Breast Cancer Awareness Month “with Kimberly Bordenstein, executive director of the Carson Valley Medical Center Foundation, Jen Nalder, executive director of Mainstreet Gardnerville, and my wife Laura being present to accept the proclamation.
Many women in our community have been stricken with this disease and I’m hopeful of them joining us in the board chambers at 1 p.m. today to be recognized and accept this proclamation as well.
By the way, you will be seeing me wear a lot of pink this month in honor of those who have suffered and those who have passed and those who are currently fighting, in supporting the effort to discover a cure for this disease.
Commissioner, District 3
Topaz Ranch Estates
Don’t punish deputies for doing their jobs
When we moved to Douglas County 17 years ago we found the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office to be the very model of community policing. Led by Sheriff Ron Pierini and Undersheriff Paul Howell we saw a department fully involved with and committed to citizen safety.
Building on that foundation Sheriff Dan Coverley, Undersheriff Ron Elges and our captains adopted new technologies and extended outreach initiatives. This has enabled them to keep the commitment to protect and serve by broadening crime prevention in neighborhoods and increasing citizen access to their services.
But today we see a war on cops that defies all reality. In 2020 U.S. murders spiked up 30 percent in large cities with left wing leadership that defunded their police, leaving their citizens to the tender mercies of BLM and ANTIFA rioters. Four Minneapolis police officers are being tried for killing street thug George Floyd, despite the coroner’s official finding that he died in their custody from a fentanyl overdose. Just recently, two East Coast police officers pursued a moped operator riding on the sidewalk. He entered an intersection attempting to elude, was hit by a car, and killed. Charges of manslaughter are being brought against the officers.
Don’t think this can’t happen here. We accompanied Douglas County District Attorney Mark Jackson to the Democrat controlled 2019 Nevada Legislature in what was a futile attempt to stop passage of AB236 which, among other things, prohibits law enforcement from notifying ICE of a detained illegal alien. The felony theft threshold was redefined from $650 in value to $2,000. Felony narcotics possession was increased from 28 to 400 grams. Many felons can now avoid prison by enlisting in a rehabilitation program that will leave them with a clean record. AB236 was a blatant pro-criminal bill that hurts law abiding citizens and makes the District Attorney’s and the cops’ jobs even tougher.
Douglas County’s one BLM visit fizzled in part because ordinary citizens turned out in force to support our sheriffs. We must now accept that future threats may be coming from woke Nevada politicians waiting to concoct some excuse to allow them to attack our officers. We think we’ve got a good deal going with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, but in order to keep that deal we can’t allow some felony-loving woke politician to punish deputies for doing their jobs.
Lynn and Jan Muzzy
Time to replace Amodei
Your vote is your voice in choosing a candidate. Facts matter when you cast that vote. It’s time to retire Mark Amodei based on the facts and his voting record. According to VoteSmart’s 2020 Voter’s Self-Defense Manual, a nonpartisan organization that compiles reliable, unbiased political information, VoteSmart rates Mr. Amodei as having “No political courage.” “The Political Courage Test asks candidates one central question: Are you willing to honorably tell citizens where you stand on the issues you may face if elected by clearly answering questions of importance to voters? Representatives with ‘No Political Courage’ refused to provide citizens with their issue positions on the Political Courage Test at the time of their last election.”
As laid out below, Mr. Amodei’s voting record on many important issues; election security, discrimination, gun safety laws, health care, and public land sales and transfers, clearly indicate it’s time for a change:
Voted “no” on a bill that would have provided election security grants and requirements for voting systems and paper ballots.
Voted “no” on a bill that prohibits discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation and gender identity in areas such as education, employment and housing.
Voted “no” on a bill that called for a background check for every firearm sale.
Voted “no’ on a bill that prohibits states from opting out of federal guidance that requires health insurance companies to cover individuals with preexisting conditions, under the Affordable Care Act.
Mr. Amodei sponsored bills to sell off our public lands for economic development (H.R. 6228 and H.R. 6229)
Decided not to vote on a bill, “Delivering for America,” that would have provided additional money to the Post Office and would have prohibited the agency from making any changes.
Voted “no” on the Heroes Act that would have responded to the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on the economy, public health, state and local governments, individuals, and businesses.
Voted “no” on extending housing assistance in response to the coronavirus.
According to FiveThirtyEight, Amodei has voted with the Republican party 95.1% of the time.
We need a candidate who supports and protects election security, anti-discrimination laws, gun safety laws, our health and preexisting conditions in health care plans, and our public lands. It’s time for a change, retire Mr. Amodei.