Category Archives: Local News

Photo courtesy INYO County Sheriff

Black Sabbath Bassist arrested in Death Valley

Inyo County SO confirms the arrest of Musician Terence Butler

According to the Inyo County Sheriffs department, shortly after midnight on January 27th Sheriff’s Dispatch received a call regarding a verbal and physical altercation that took place at the Corkscrew Saloon located at the Furnace Creek Ranch property in Death Valley National Park.
After the Inyo County Sheriff’s Deputy arrived on scene and interviewed witnesses it was determined that there had been an argument that escalated into a physical confrontation – resulting in an individual allegedly being struck, and a broken window. Terence Michael Butler a 65-year old man from Beverly Hills, CA was arrested for misdemeanor assault, public intoxication and vandalism.
Butler was booked into the Inyo County Jail and released after detox and citation.  Terence “Geezer” Butler is the bassist for the band Black Sabbath.

Photo courtesy INYO County Sheriff
Photo courtesy INYO County Sheriff
inyo county news, eastern sierra news, inyo county sheriffs department
Sierra Nevada Red Fox Photo

Sierra Nevada Red Fox Spotted

Rare Sierra Nevada Red Fox Spotted in Yosemite National Park

Fox photographed with remote motion-sensitive camera

Yosemite News Release

Yosemite National Park is excited to report the first confirmed sighting in the park of a rare Sierra Nevada red fox (Vulpes vulpes necator) in nearly 100 years.  Park wildlife biologists had gone on a five-day backcountry trip to the far northern part of the park to check on previously deployed motion-sensitive cameras.  They documented a sighting of the fox on two separate instances (December 13, 2014 and January 4, 2015) within the park boundary.  The Sierra Nevada red fox of California is one of the rarest mammals in North America, likely consisting of fewer than 50 individuals.

 “We are thrilled to hear about the sighting of the Sierra Nevada red fox, one of the most rare and elusive animals in the Sierra Nevada,” stated Don Neubacher, Yosemite National Park Superintendent. “National parks like Yosemite provide habitat for all wildlife and it is encouraging to see that the red fox was sighted in the park.”

 “Confirmation of the Sierra Nevada red fox in Yosemite National Park’s vast alpine wilderness provides an opportunity to join research partners in helping to protect this imperiled animal,” stated Sarah Stock, Wildlife Biologist in Yosemite National Park. “We’re excited to work across our boundary to join efforts with other researchers that will ultimately give these foxes the best chances for recovery.”

The nearest verified occurrences of Sierra Nevada red foxes have been in the Sonora Pass area, north of the park, where biologists from U.C. Davis (UCD), California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), and U.S. Forest Service (USFS) have been monitoring a small Sierra Nevada red fox population, first documented by the USFS in 2010.  Prior to 2010, the last verified sighting of a Sierra Nevada red fox in the region was two decades ago.

The Yosemite carnivore crew will continue to survey for Sierra Nevada red fox using remote cameras in hopes of detecting additional individuals.  At each camera station, the crew also set up hair snare stations in the hopes of obtaining hair samples for genetic analysis.  Through genetic analysis, the park can learn more about the diversity within the population and to confirm whether the fox(es) detected in Yosemite is genetically related to individuals from the Sonora Pass area.

These Sierra Nevada red fox detections are part of a larger study funded by the Yosemite Conservancy to determine occurrence and distribution of rare carnivores in Yosemite National Park.  Thank you to all our colleagues who have been helping us with this project in many important ways (UCD, USFS, CDFW, Central Sierra Environmental Resource Center, Bureau of Land Management, and Yosemite backcountry rangers and volunteers).

Sierra Nevada Red Fox Photo

Photo Credit: NPS Photo

Yosemite national park, eastern sierra news, sierra nevada red fox

mt whit 3

Lone Pine Trout Derby

Lone Pine Early Opener Trout Derby

The $800 Blind Bogey Lone Pine Early opener trout derby is set for Saturday, March 7th.  Prizes will be awarded for the largest fish, largest catch and tagged fish.  The grand prize is the $800 blind bogey!  Sign ups will take place from 6:30 am to 12 noon at Diaz Lake.  Contact the Lone Pine Chamber of Commerce for more information, 760-876-4444, or visit their web site, www.lonepinechamber.org.  The Lone Pine early opener trout derby is brought to you by the Lone Pine Business community and Inyo County.

The entry fee is $10 for adults, $5 for children.  Coffee and Donuts will be available at sign up time, and lunch will also be available.

Photo by Gary Young Photography, The historic Mt. Whitney Fish Hatchery.

eastern sierra news, lone pine news, lone pine chamber of commerce
BishopCitySeal

Warren Street Update

Work Continues on Bishop’s Warren Street

From the City of Bishop Public Works Department:
Construction of the City of Bishop Warren Street Improvements project continues with construction of storm drain on South Warren and with preparation for concrete work on North Warren. Storm drain construction is progressing north along South Warren from near Lagoon Street. The new storm drain pipe is expected to have been placed in the ground as far as Line Street this week and is expected to continue north of Line next week. Restoration of
pavement and concrete removed for the storm drain construction on South Warren is expected in the next few weeks.
Tuesday, January 27th the contractor started removing existing concrete on North Warren near the police station in preparation for the placement of the first new concrete on the project next week.
Before new concrete can be placed, existing concrete, pavement, and trees must be removed, pipes for street light electricity and irrigation must be placed, and the ground must be graded with gravel base. This preparatory work is expected to be completed in this one area so the first concrete can be placed here next week.
Construction in downtown Bishop impacts traffic on city streets west of Main Street and will cause inconvenience and delays. Closures required for the construction include full street and intersection closures during the daytime. Equipment, workers, excavations in the street, uneven pavement, and other hidden hazards will require attention, even when work is not underway. Businesses will still be open to serve you during construction. All efforts will be made to maintain access to businesses and to minimize project impacts and restrictions. Drivers, riders, and pedestrians should be cautious, take alternate routes, and be patient.
city of bishop, bishop news, eastern sierra news, warren street project
boron

Boron Football

CIF Commissioner Reflects on Boron Football

CIF Southern Section Commission Rob Wigod’s message focuses in  on Boron High School Football.  Bishop Union High School faced the Bobcats in the 2010 section championship game, a 30-22 Bronco win.

FROM TRAGEDY TO TRIUMPH
One of the greatest aspects of working for the CIF Southern Section is the opportunity to meet, work with and connect with so many outstanding people throughout the vast expanse of our section.
An example of one of those strong connections I have made over the years is with Boron High School. I first became aware of Boron High School, a school of 150 students that is located in one of our more remote areas of the section, when I began working as an Assistant Commissioner in charge of football for our section 14 years ago. The Boron Bobcats were one of the strongest football programs among
our smaller schools at that time and had made quite a name for themselves through their performance in that sport. However, being a small school, there were many challenges facing them in trying to field an 11-Man Football program and in September, 2002, Boron High School had to drop Varsity Football due to a lack of players that year. It was a very sad time for their school and their community, but they were able to reinstate Varsity Football soon after. Little did anyone know that not having a Varsity Football team were not the saddest days facing Boron High School.
On September 12, 2008, tragedy struck Boron High School and the CIF Southern Section. Sophomore Vinnie Rodriguez suffered a severe head injury during Boron’s football game that night. Vinnie spent the next few days in the hospital fighting for his life, but unfortunately, he passed away four days later. Principal
Paul Kostopoulos, Athletic Director Jim Boghosian, Head Football Coach Todd Fink, the Boron Bobcat Football Team and their entire community were completely devastated by this horrific loss and were faced with the huge task of trying to pick up the pieces and go on. In speaking with the Boron administration throughout that week, it was clearly evident to me that their sense of loss was overwhelming. However, somehow they were able to persevere as the Boron High School Football players voted to play their upcoming game on Friday, September 19 at Kern Valley High School in
Lake Isabella, in memory of their fallen teammate. Once I heard that decision, I had no doubt where I would be that night and what I witnessed during and after that game will stay with me forever.
On that Friday afternoon, the Boron Bobcats boarded their bus and headed for Kern Valley High School. While on the way, Coach Fink’s cell phone rang. On the other end of the line was University of Southern California Head Football Coach Pete Carroll. Coach Carroll called to offer his condolences and his support to Coach Fink and the Boron players on behalf of the entire USC Trojan Football program. What a classy move that was on his part.
Boron got off to a slow start that night and fell behind early. Kern Valley led 21-14 at the end of 3 quarters and extended their lead to 35-21 with 2 minutes left. What happened next was remarkable. Boron scored a touchdown and went for a 2 point conversion, which was successful. Then, the Bobcats got the ball back, scored another touchdown and kicked the extra point to win the game 36-35. In a truly courageous and inspiring performance, there was no way that Boron was going to be denied that night. Once the game was over, both schools met at midfield and released black and gold balloons, Boron’s school colors, into the sky in memory of Vinnie Rodriguez. It was one of the most emotional and stirring scenes I have ever seen as both schools and communities came together to support each other in such a meaningful way. These two schools truly exemplified and defined what high school athletics is all about: courage, perseverance, competition and compassion.
Now, we fast forward to this week when the Boron High School football players and coaches will board a bus once again. This week, that bus will be headed to University of Phoenix Stadium in
Glendale, Arizona, the site of Super Bowl XLIX. Boron’s football team has won a nationwide contest sponsored by the National Football League called Together We Make Football in which they were selected to receive a 5-day, 4-night all expenses paid trip to see the Super Bowl and participate in several activities leading up to the game. My understanding is they are going to have an opportunity
to be on the field before the game starts and wouldn’t it be ironic if they get to see Seattle Seahawks Head Coach Pete Carroll on Super Sunday?
The question asked for this contest was, “Why do we love football?”
Answers were judged on whether your story would stir passion for the game of football along with your explanation of why football was so important to your school and your community. Under the
current leadership of Principal Nat Adams, Athletic Director Rob Kostopoulos and Head Football Coach Tim Seaman, Boron High School articulated their story very well and as you can imagine, Boron’s story moved people from all over the country who sent in their votes to help them win. Another reason why Boron won this contest is because Muroc Joint Unified School District Director
of Instruction and Assessment Paul Kostopolous, now a member of the CIF Southern Section Executive Committee as Desert Area Representative, reached out to our office and his fellow Executive Committee members to help get the word out that people needed to vote for Boron to win. We reached out to the CIF State Office and the other 9 CIF Sections and they got on board as well, galvanizing the State of California in support of the Bobcats.
This is a story that reminds all of us how valuable and important the role of high school athletics is to our schools and our communities. The lessons that are learned through these experiences will
last a lifetime. Sometimes those lessons can be incredibly difficult and painful, but through that adversity, we can overcome and triumph over it. Boron High School has certainly shown us how to do
so. I know you all join me in expressing how proud we are of Boron High School as they represent their school, their community, the CIF Southern Section and the state of California on the biggest football stage in our nation this Sunday.
Go Bobcats!
All the best,

Rob Wigod
Commissioner of Athletics, CIF Southern Section

boron

Photo by Gary Young Photography.  #30 Deandre Golden vs Bishop Union in the 2010 CIF SS Championship game.  Bishop won 30-22.

boron high school football, cif southern section, desert mountain league sports, eastern sierra news
IMG_9577

CASA needs Volunteers

CASA OF THE EASTERN SIERRA SEEKS
DEDICATED VOLUNTEERS

Inyo and Mono Counties, CA: CASA of the Eastern Sierra, a non-profit collaboration and partnership between Wild Iris Family Counseling and Crisis Center and the Superior Court of California, for the Counties of Inyo and Mono, seeks dedicated volunteers to become CASA advocates on behalf of foster children. CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) volunteers are trained to lift up the needs of the abused or neglected child and to lift up the child’s voice. After training and subsequent appointment by a judge, CASA volunteers are advocates for children whose futures rest in the hands of Juvenile Court judges. CASA volunteers work one-on-one with the foster child, biological and foster parents, teachers, therapists, and others involved in the child’s life. They conduct independent investigations of a foster child’s circumstances, and communicate what the child desires or needs. The CASA’s findings are reported to the Court by the volunteer.
Imagine being a child removed from your parents and placed in the home of a stranger. It’s likely you are confused, frightened, and uncertain as to what the future holds. The Eastern Sierra needs CASA volunteers for children such as these. By building a relationship with the child, CASA volunteers become a consistent and trusted adult in the child’s life. The CASA is trained to provide the child with a sense of security, as well as serving in the critical role of being a voice, eyes, and ears for the child.
Interested volunteers must be at least 21 years of age and willing to commit at least one year to the program. Potential volunteers attend an orientation meeting, are interviewed, undergo a criminal background check, and complete up to 36 hours of free, in-depth training before being sworn as a CASA volunteer. Lisa Reel, Executive Director of Wild Iris and CASA of the Eastern Sierra, declares “CASA volunteers are ordinary people who achieve extraordinary things. People of all backgrounds, careers, ethnicity, cultural experiences, and life experiences are encouraged to apply. You’d be astounded by what a difference a single person can make in the life of a child within our court system.”
The next training is scheduled to occur in February and March, 2015.

Training Schedule
Information and Orientation Meeting 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Day 1, Classroom 9:00a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Saturday, March 7, 2015
Day 2, Classroom 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Day 3, Classroom 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Day 4, Classroom 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Day 5, Classroom 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Saturday, March 28, 2015

Court Observation Thursday, April 2 & Thursday April 23rd

Those who successfully complete the training and screening process may be certified CASAs for both Mono and Inyo Counties. If you are interested in becoming a CASA, please contact Ginnie Bird, CASA Volunteer Coordinator/Case Manager at (760) 873-6601 or gbird@wild-iris.org.

THE NEED FOR COURT APPOINTED ADVOCATES IS GREAT, AS WE HAVE CHILDREN ON A WAITING LIST FOR THEIR OWN CASA IN BOTH INYO AND MONO COUNTIES. PLEASE
CONSIDER THIS OPPORTUNITY TO SERVE THESE SPECIAL CHILDREN, AND TO MAKE A FOREVER DIFFERNCE IN THEIR LIVES.

bishop news, eastern sierra news, mono county news, casa of the eastern sierra
Moriarty Swear In

New Undersheriff for Mono

Mono County Sheriff Names a new Number 2

The Mono County Sheriff’s Office has welcomed the newest member to their team. During the official Oath of Office, performed by Sheriff Ingrid Braun, Michael Moriarty was sworn-in as the new Undersheriff.

Undersheriff Moriarty was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminology and moved to Los Angeles to join the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) in January 1981. He had a successful career at LAPD rising in the ranks from police officer to commander. He spent the majority of his career in the investigative function in assignments such as Gang Enforcement, Homicide, Street and Major Narcotics, Internal Affairs and Public Corruption. His final assignment with LAPD was the Assistant Commanding Officer of the Detective Bureau in charge of the Specialized Detective Divisions and Crime Lab.

Undersheriff Moriarty comes to Mono County after spending the past several years as the Chief of the Bureau of Investigation for the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office. He is a lifetime member of the California Narcotics Officers Association (CNOA); and a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the California District Attorneys Association and the California Gangs Investigators Association.

“Undersheriff Moriarty brings over 33 years of law enforcement experience to the Mono County Sheriff’s Office,” said Sheriff Braun. “He agrees with my vision of community policing and restoring the faith and trust of law enforcement back into our communities.”

Written and reported by: Jennifer M. Hansen, Public Information Officer

mono county sheriff, mono county news, eastern sierra news
Tesla Lone Pine Museum #2

Lone Pine Tesla Station opening

Lone Pine Welcomes Tesla Supercharger Station

On January 27, 2015 Lone Pine will open one of Highway 395’s first Tesla Supercharger stations.  The Station is located at the Lone Pine Film History Museum just South of Lone Pine, CA.
Tesla drivers on Highway 395 can now recharge for free while visiting one of America’s finest museums dedicated exclusively to the heritage of Western ”Cowboy” film making and then enjoy the tastes of Lone Pine’s many eateries.
Tesla’s business model includes building a network of fast charging stations — faster than any other electric vehicle manufacturer — along the major interstates around the country to enable Tesla owners to travel from city to city. Tesla offers the charging services for free, making the Superchargers a gathering place for members of the Tesla owner’s community.
A statement from the Lone Pine film history museum, ” While charging your car – you can visit the Lone Pine Film History Museum and the city of Lone Pine. Located at the base to the Eastern Sierra’s highest point in the continental USA, Mt. Whitney – and the Alabama Hills, whose unique geological formations brought Hollywood studios to the area to shoot “Cowboy” films, are not to be missed. Filming started in 1919 with a full-length feature film, The Roundup starring Fatty Arbuckle. The city is also an access location for Death Valley, The Ancient Bristlecone Forest, Eureka Sand Dunes and many other interesting American heritage areas along Highway 395.”

lone pine news, eastern sierra news, lone pine film history museum, tesla, mt whitney, alabama hills
AdvTrails_OverallMap

Inyo Supervisors Approve 7 AT routes

Inyo Adventure Trails System gets the Green Light

After nearly 11 hours of testimony and public comment Thursday, the Inyo Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 approving the Eastern Sierra ATV Adventure Trails System Project.  The primary goal of the project is to link off highway vehicle users with goods and services located in Inyo County communities.  Inyo County Administrative Officer Kevin Carunchio indicates that the action taken by the board of Thursday gives the OK to a plan that was substantially reduced from the projects original plan

Thursdays public hearing began at 10am in the Independence legion hall and continued throughout the day, wrapping up just before 9pm.  After receiving several reports and hearing from the public the board took formal action to move forward with the seven routes.

Routes include, Bishop #5, Brown’s Town to Poleta OHV area, Bishop #6, Pleasant Valley Campground to Horton Creek Campground, Bishop #7, Pleasant Valley Campground to Tungsten City, Bishop #9, Brown’s Town to Bir Road, Bishop #15, Britt’s Diesel to Poleta OHV Recreation Area, Independence #1, Independence Inn to Betty Jumbo Mine Road, and Lone Pine #1, Boulder Creek RV Park to N. Fork Lubken Canyon/BLM road.
Carunchio says that adding future routes would require a lengthy process

The link to the Inyo County Planning departments Adventure Trials Web site

http://inyoplanning.org/projects/AdventureTrails.htm

AdvTrails_OverallMap

inyo county news, adventure trails project, bishop news, kevin carunchio, eastern sierra news
lone pine(1)

Cook Introduces Alabama Hills Bill

Cook’s Bill would designate Scenic Area

Press Release:
Rep. Paul Cook Introduces Bill to Create Alabama Hills National Scenic Area
WASHINGTON –Earlier today, Rep. Paul Cook (R – Apple Valley) introduced the Alabama Hills National Scenic Area Establishment Act, legislation that would establish the Alabama Hills National Scenic Area. This designation would encompass 18,610 acres of the scenic Alabama Hills and would preserve it for recreational use by the public and future generations.

This bill guarantees that all recreational activities currently taking place in the Alabama Hills will continue. This includes not only hiking, mountain biking, and rock climbing, but hunting, fishing, and authorized motorized vehicle use as well. Additionally, recreational prospecting (rock-hounding) will continue in the historic mining areas under this legislation.
This bill is the culmination of months of work by Rep. Paul Cook and the Alabama Hills Stewardship Group to draft legislative language acceptable to all key local stakeholders. The stewardship group is dedicated to  promoting the long term vision, conservation, use, enhancement, and enjoyment of the Alabama Hills . Groups and organizations that have worked with the stewardship group include Inyo County, the Lone Pine Chamber of Commerce, the Lone-Pine Paiute-Shoshone Tribe, local business owners, and other key stakeholders.

Cook said, “The Alabama Hills are a natural treasure, and I’m excited to introduce this bill to help guarantee our children and grandchildren can enjoy them the same way we do. The level of local input has been incredible and should serve as an example for how land use decisions are made.

“Last year, I introduced legislation to establish the Alabama Hills National Scenic Area. While it didn’t become law last year, it provided local stakeholders and conservation groups the opportunity to suggest changes to make this a better bill. I’m excited to incorporate these changes in the new version of this important legislation this year. My constituents in Inyo have been working to get this done for years, and I’m hopeful that 2015 will be the year the Alabama Hills get the protection they deserve.”

eastern sierra news, lone pine news, alabama hills, inyo county news