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Listen To Your News Monday, January 7, 2013 News Archive
     

ONE KILLED, THREE INJURED IN 3-CAR CRASH IN MORONGO VALLEY YESTERDAY
One person was killed and two people were critically injured, in a three-vehicle crash in Morongo Valley Sunday afternoon. At 4:09, the California Highway Patrol, and emergency responders from the Morongo Valley and Yucca Valley Fire Departments, the Morongo Basin Ambulance, and Mercy Air, were called to the scene of the head-on crash on Highway 62 just east of Rawson Road. Two vehicles involved in the crash overturned onto the shoulder of the westbound highway; a red Mitsubishi landed on its side, a silver Kia on its roof. According to Morongo Valley Fire Captain Chris Nichols, it took firefighters 40 minutes, using the Jaws of Life, to extricate the male driver in the Kia, identified by the coroner as John Ogie, 49, of Yucca Valley, who died from his injuries at the hospital. Two other men had critical injuries and were taken by Morongo Basin Ambulance to Desert Hospital in Palm Springs. A woman in the third car, a Honda which ended up about 200 feet west of the crash, was treated at the scene for minor injuries and declined transport to the hospital. Both westbound and eastbound lanes of the highway were shut down during the rescue, with the westbound lanes finally reopening about two hours later. The CHP is investigating the cause of the crash.

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TWENTYNINE PALMS PLANNING COMMISSION WORKED ON THE NITTY-GRITTY, IN 2012, A LOOK BACK
Z107-7 News continues our look back at 2012 for our local elected and appointed bodies. Today, reporter Dan Stork looks back at the work of the Twentynine Palms Planning Commission. Stork says there was a lot of nitty-gritty…

The Twentynine Palms Planning Commission is often called upon to weigh in on specific permit applications on which City staff doesn't wish, for one reason or another, to pass judgment on its own. Such specific issues frequently lead to reconsideration of elements of the City's written codes. Sometimes issues start in the need to integrate state rule changes with local standards, or the desire to address a social or economic issue in a formal way. Such were the paths that led to discussion of (among other things): home-based food industry, raising ball pythons at home, synthetic drug definition, grace periods for nonconforming structures and uses, and seagoing cargo containers. Also this year, the Commission struggled to come up with guidelines for commercial solar energy development. The largest sustained effort of the year was a thorough review and revision of the City's Development Code, with the objective of making it more "customer friendly," as well as updating and clarifying it. Commission newcomers Pamela Carmichael and Richard Banneck learned the ropes, as they joined veterans Greg Mendoza, Bill Easter, and Cary Alderson in these efforts.

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TWO DUI SATURATION PATROLS, ONE ARREST FOR DUI
The Yucca Valley and Twentynine Palms police departments each held a DUI saturation patrol on Sunday, December 30 between the hours of 7 p.m. and 3 a.m. In Yucca Valley, one person was arrested for driving under the influence, one person was arrested for presenting false registration papers, and one person was cited for driving with a suspended or revoked license. In Twentynine Palms, three drivers were warned for equipment violations. No arrests were made for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Both police departments plan additional DUI saturation patrols in the future.

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YUCCA VALLEY MAN ARRESTED AFTER THREATENING TO KILL HIS WIFE
A Yucca Valley man was arrested Saturday, after his wife said he threatened to kill her. According to a Sheriff's report, Trayvon Sawyer, 25, was arguing with his wife in the 6400 block of Camarilla Avenue about 8 p.m. Saturday. The report notes that when the argument began to escalate, Sawyer's wife tried to leave, but he grabbed her by her hair, then pushed her down onto the couch, allegedly telling her "I'm going to tie you up and kill you." When Sawyer stepped out of the house to smoke a cigarette, his wife left and called police. Trayvon Sawyer was arrested for investigation of making terrorist threats and booked at the Morongo Basin Jail with his bail set at $50,000.

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WE SPEAK TO A MARINE IN AFGHANISTAN, A LEADER AND MENTOR
One of the best things about being a Marine is being a leader and a mentor. Sergeant Christopher Contreras, an electronics repairman with Regimental Combat Team-7, has been in the Marine Corps for seven years, and a sergeant for the last four years. Last week, managing editor Tami Roleff spoke with Sergeant Contreras in Afghanistan about what it's like to be a deployed Marine…

Sergeant Christopher Contreras deployed to Afghanistan with RCT-7 in October, and said the best thing about his deployment is working with his younger Marines. "I do like teaching them new things, it sets a good example, I think by mentoring them." Like most Marines, Sergeant Contreras likes deploying. "The things I'm going to remember the most are working with my younger Marines every single day because it's their first deployment, so I know they're going to remember it for a long time, and that makes it special that I get to be a part of their experience. I just enjoy working with them every day." Being deployed gives him lots of opportunity for working with his Marines, as they are together 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with no days off. "It's really good to be able to work with your Marines every single day. It can get annoying at times because you are with the same people every single day, but it's an opportunity most people don't get to do."

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FIRST DAY IN CONGRESS, THREE APPOINTMENTS FOR PAUL COOK
After being in office for just one day, Congressman Paul Cook of Yucca Valley, who represents the newly formed 8th Congressional District, announced appointments to three committees for the 113th U.S. Congress. Cook will serve on the Committee on Armed Services, the Committee on Foreign Affairs, and will sit on the Committee on Veterans Affairs. Cook said in a statement, "Having spent twenty-six years in the U.S. Marine Corps, I've witnessed the impact Washington can have on our troops and their families. With five military installations in my district, including several of the most important training facilities in the nation, my job is to fight for them so that they can be prepared to defend our country. These installations mean a lot to the communities out here, so serving on the Armed Services Committee will ensure that the people of the 8th Congressional District have a strong voice in decisions affecting our local bases." The 8th Congressional District includes the Morongo Basin, Highland, Yucaipa, the San Bernardino Mountains, the High Desert and both Mono and Inyo counties. In addition, Cook said he is committed to preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

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THEATRE 29 OFFERS PROMOTIONAL OPPORTUNITIES
As Theatre 29 opens its first play of 2013, the murder-mystery-thriller-comedy, "Deathtrap" this Friday, Reporter Dan Stork says the theatre organization offers plenty of promotional opportunities for area businesses and organizations…

Theatre 29 has multiple ways to support community activities, both non-profit and commercial. Local non-profits can take advantage of the Theatre 29 Opening Night sponsorship program to raise funds. Commercial businesses can utilize the Theatre 29 Patron program to support the Theatre organization while promoting their business. Theater 29 also has opportunities for exposure to arts patrons by placing ads in the programs for the individual productions. Information on sponsors, Patrons, and program advertising is available by calling Cindy Daigneault at 760-366-8471. For more information about Theatre 29 or support opportunities call the Theatre 29 Box Office at 760-361-4151 or go online to www.theatre29.org

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COUNTY SUPERVISORS MEET TOMORROW FOR FIRST 2013 MEETING
County supervisors will hold their first meeting of the year tomorrow at 10 a.m. at the County Government Center in San Bernardino. On the agenda are employee contracts for staff members of new 3rd District Supervisor James Ramos. The board will consider an employment contract for Beverly Lowry, who will be Ramos' community services liaison at a salary of $36,875, including benefits. In November, Ramos appointed Phil Paule, a French Valley resident and former candidate for the 67th Assembly District, as his chief of staff. Last month, he hired as his deputy chief of staff Christopher Carrillo at an annual salary of $161,361, including benefits, and Molly Wiltshire as his communications assistant at a salary of $77,691. Ramos also hired last month as his administrative analyst Otoniel "Tony" Mejia at a salary of $111,518, including benefits

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SAN DIEGO ENGINEERING FIRM TO DESIGN YUCCA VALLEY SEWER SYSTEM
The civil engineering firm of Atkins, out of San Diego, was selected for a $3.8 million contract to design a new wastewater collection system for the Hi-Desert Water District of Yucca Valley. The project is the first of three phases to convert existing private septic systems to a public sewer system. During Phase I, about 5,000 homes will be converted with the construction of approximately 77 miles of main line sewer pipe, 1,200 manholes, and 3 pump stations. Septic systems are currently used for wastewater disposal. The California Regional Water Quality Control Board adopted a state order to remove the septic systems by 2016. The Atkins team previously worked on the Wastewater System Expansion Program in Lake Havasu City.

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ROTARY MUSIC COMPETITION SET FOR FEBRUARY 16
Area music students are being invited to participate in the Yucca Valley Noon Rotary Club's annual music competition. Managing editor Tami Roleff tells you how to enter…

The Rotary Club of Yucca Valley will hold its annual Student Music Competition at 7 p.m. on February 16 at Yucca Valley High School, 7600 Sage Avenue, in Yucca Valley. The competition is open to all high school students and home study students at the high school level who live in the Morongo Basin. Students may enter in one of three categories: vocal, instrumental or piano and may perform one or more pieces in the competition. Singers must perform songs from musical theater or classical music. All others must perform at least one piece of classical music. First place award is $200, second place gets $100 and third takes home $50. Registration deadline is February 2. Registration forms are available by calling Ignazio Ficara at 365-7000.

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HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS SCHEDULES
Coming up in high school sports tomorrow, the Yucca Valley High School girls' soccer team will travel to Big Bear to play the Big Bear Bears. Match time is 3 p.m.

The Twentynine Palms High School boys and girls soccer teams will host Shadow Hills High School tomorrow. The girls' match starts at 3:15; boys' at 5.

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