Tag Archives: bishop ca news

A New Regional Dispatch Center Could be Built in Bishop

The Bishop City Council unanimously voted 5-0 to approve funding for a site-study of a new regional dispatch center that would be based in Bishop.

The idea is for the Bishop Police Department, Mammoth Lakes Police Department, Inyo County Sheriff’s Office, and Mono County Sheriff’s Office to have all of their dispatchers working together in the same space.

Bishop Police Chief, Ted Stec argued in favor of the project saying, “A Regional Dispatch Center would save money because it would require less personnel from all agencies in the area in the long run.”

Mammoth Lakes PD and Mono and Inyo County Sheriff’s Offices are requesting that the City of Bishop pay $25,000 to help split the cost of the study of feasibility four ways with the total estimated at approximately $100,000 dollars.

Currently, Bishop has not budgeted for such a study, whereas other agencies have pooled together their resources and approved the funding for the investigation.

Council member Chris Costello of the City of Bishop seemed wary of the cost. “We already have a great dispatch center in place. I think if the system is not broken, then don’t fix it.” the council member stated.

However, Costello also said that he did not want to leave the town’s neighbors hanging out to dry, and brought forth the idea of providing $5,000 dollars of funding toward the study to in order to demonstrate good will.

Mayor Pro-Tempore Laura Smith expressed interest in the project saying, “Yes, we already have a good dispatch center set up, but we can make it even better by adding emergency medical dispatch services to the regional dispatch center.”

Police Chief Stec acknowledged the feasibility of adding medical services to the center but said the dispatchers would need further training in that realm to add it into the center’s repertoire.

During the meeting, it was apparent that most members of the city council were wary of being perceived as being bad neighbors. Karen Schwartz of the city council spoke on the issue saying, “I support the regional dispatch center because it supports the greater good and helps out our entire region.” Mayor Jim Ellis expressed similar feelings on the matter, and seconded Schwartz’s motion.

Rob Patterson, the Finance Director for the Town of Mammoth Lakes was in attendance and told the council he did not believe the project would be as expensive as the estimated price. “I don’t think the cost of the study will be $100,000.” Patterson said. “It may be around that amount, but we just want to ensure that there is enough money available to complete the study. There is also a chance that it could be something the California Office of Emergency Services covers, we have to explore that further.”

Shortly after, the council voted unanimously to approve funding not to exceed $25,000 dollars. Councilmen Costello and Muchovej reluctantly voted in favor of the study, whereas Smith, Schwartz, and Ellis supported the study.

The study is expected to take a few months, with no solid timetable available at the moment.

Donations Sought for the Annual Eastern Sierra Shop with a Cop

Law enforcement officers and public safety staff from law enforcement and criminal justice agencies throughout Mono and Inyo Counties are busy planning the Annual Shop-with-a-Cop event, which will be held Saturday, December 14, 2019.

This is a very special day where our local law enforcement brings the true spirit of Christmas to families in need throughout the Eastern Sierra and Owens Valley. Children are selected by various local law enforcement agencies from nominations received by area schools, community groups and individuals. On Saturday morning, the children are picked up at their homes by their law enforcement “partners” and taken to pancake breakfast sponsored by the Bishop Lion’s Club. After breakfast, the officers and children respond Code 3 (lights and sirens) through Bishop to K-Mart to start their shopping extravaganza. Each child is given $200 to shop for gifts for their families. After all the gifts have been purchased, local volunteers wrap the gifts, and the officers and children travel home where an early holiday celebration begins!

Their goal for the 2019 Shop-with-a-Cop event is to provide Christmas to 70 children and their families. This event is completely donation driven. Let’s start getting into the holiday spirit and donate to this great event today! Donations can be dropped off at the Mono County Sheriff’s Office, Inyo County Sheriff’s Office, Bishop Police Department and Mammoth Lakes Police Department. Please make checks payable to ESPOA (Eastern Sierra Peace Officers Association) with “Shop-with-a-Cop” written in the memo line. ESPOA is a 501(c)3, and your donation is tax deductible.

BLM Bishop Field Office Issues Seasonal Fire Restrictions

BISHOP, Calif. – The Bureau of Land Management Bishop Field Office has issued seasonal fire restrictions for BLM-managed public lands in the Eastern Sierra effective Monday, July 1, due to increased wildland fire danger in the region. The restrictions will remain in effect until November 1, or until wildland fire conditions on public lands in the region improve.

Fire officials estimate that nearly 90 percent of wildland fires affecting BLM-managed public lands in California during the last decade have been human caused. Individuals who spark wildfires, intentionally or unintentionally, may be held responsible for fire suppression and property damage costs. Officials encourage the public to be extremely careful when recreating outdoors, to carry a shovel and water at all times, and to check weather forecasts and fire danger conditions before leaving home.

The following restrictions will remain in place until the risk of wildland fire in the Eastern Sierra subsides:

  • No campfires, charcoal or wood barbeques, or similar open flame fires, except within a designated campsite with a fire ring or fire pit specifically provided for such use in the following developed campgrounds: Tuttle Creek Campground, Goodale Creek Campground, Horton Creek Campground, Crowley Lake Campground and Pleasant Valley Pit Campground. Portable stoves burning gas, jelled petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel are allowed outside of developed campgrounds when used in accordance with a valid California Campfire Permit, available free at all BLM, Forest Service and Cal Fire offices or at www.preventwildfireca.org/Permits.
  • No tools powered by internal combustion engines off established roads, trails or parking areas (such as chainsaws or lawn mowers).
  • No smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, or within the developed campgrounds listed above, or while stopped within an area at least five feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
  • No motorized vehicles off established roads, trails or parking areas.
  • Target shooters may not use incendiary, exploding, tracer, steel core or armor piercing ammunition. Shooting at steel or exploding targets that could emit sparks is not allowed. Target shooters must have a shovel or fire extinguisher on hand. Hunters may use steel shot and other non-lead ammunition as required by California State Law.
  • No fireworks, including “safe and sane” fireworks.
  • No welding or operating an acetylene or other torch with open flame, except by special permit.
  •  No use of explosives, except by special permit.

BLM-managed public lands subject to these fire restrictions extend from the southern Owens Valley in Inyo County, north to Topaz Lake and the Nevada border in Mono County. These fire restrictions also apply to popular BLM-managed recreational areas in the region including the Alabama Hills National Scenic Area, Inyo Mountains Wilderness, Volcanic Tableland, Long Valley, Adobe Valley, Mono Basin, Bodie Hills and Slinkard Valley. BLM seasonal fire restrictions for the Eastern Sierra Region are being implemented in close coordination with Cal Fire (https://www.facebook.com/1663811310523258/posts/2419842918253423?sfns=mo).

The BLM is committed to keeping public landscapes healthy and productive by working closely with cooperating agencies, neighboring communities, and public land visitors to prevent wildland fires. To learn how you can do your part to prevent wildland fires visit www.readyforwildfire.org. A listing of fire restrictions throughout BLM California is available at https://go.usa.gov/xmUEG. For specific questions, please contact the Bishop Field Office at 760-872-5000.

Mono County Seek to Mitigate Wildlife Deaths With Grant Money

The Mono County Board of Supervisors expressed support in their letter to Caltrans District 9, and encourage the transportation organization to apply for funding which would help mitigate wildlife deaths from vehicles.

Proposition 68 is an ordinance that provides organizations with funding to help reduce the amount vehicle collisions with animals across the state.

Currently, Caltrans District 9 is requesting $2,000,000 from the state to complete the environmental planning report. In total, the cost of completing the entire project is estimated to cost between $50,000,000-$70,000,000.

Most of the funding would go toward the seven mile stretch from Crowley Lake and the Mammoth Lakes turnoff. “The seven mile stretch of US Highway 395 from Crowley Lake Dr. to the Junction with state route 203 accounts for more than double the number of deceased deer removed by Caltrans Maintenance forces compared to any other seven mile stretch of US 395 within District 9. The letter from the supervisors went on to say “This [area] accounts for 43% of reported collisions for this area of US 395, the stretch of highway also contains the largest hotspot of deer collisions within the district.”

Not only did the supervisors express concern for deer crossing the corridor, they also noted the presence of other species including the Bi-State sage grouse. The letter says, “The areas along these roadways host significant wildlife habitat, supporting populations of resident and migratory species, including the Bi-State sage grouse which is proposed to be listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, and play a critical role for migrating mule deer in the spring and fall.”

In order to obtain the rest of the necessary funding, Mono County will seek money from other state and federal agencies. “If awarded, funding will also allow Caltrans District 9 and their partners to seek additional state and Federal Funding to support the completion of subsequent project development phases.”

Donna Vazquez Obituary

Donna F. Vasquez, 74, passed away surrounded by family on June 17, 2019 at Northern Inyo Hospital.  She lived with her family in Bishop, California, for 43 years.

She was the matriarch of her family, an environmental and community activist, a tribal leader and the most kind, giving and compassionate human being. She will be missed, not only by her family and friends but by her tribal community.

Donna was the first daughter born to Jessie and Johnny Manuelito. She grew up in West Bishop with her six brothers and sisters, Joe, Libby, Nonie, Dolly, Joey and Mark.  A proud member of the Bishop Paiute Tribe on her mother’s side and her father was Navajo of the Kinyaa’aanii clan from Sheep Springs, Navajo Nation, New Mexico.

Donna graduated from Bishop Union High School in 1962 and she later moved to southern California to attend Riverside City College. While living in Riverside, she met her future husband, Alex Vasquez Sr., and married that spring. They started their family of 5 by having three beautiful children, Alex, Paul and Sky.  

The coupled moved back to Bishop where Donna began many years of service to her tribal community,

She worked for many local organizations such as the Toiyabe Indian Health Clinic, Owens Valley Career Development, and was elected to the Bishop Paiute Tribal Council as Vice Chairwoman.  She also had a 20-year-long career as a Phlebotomist at Northern Inyo Hospital. She earned a reputation as “the one to call” for when there was a baby or challenging draw. All of the elders specifically asked for her when they came in looking for help.

Donna continued to live in Bishop with Alex into their retirement and was very dedicated to her family and community.  You could find her working in her garden or traveling to visit her children and grandchildren. She also continued her support of her Paiute tribal community participating on committees such as the Bishop Paiute Cultural Advisory committee, Tribal Scholarship Committee and Chair of the Tribal Environmental Protection Act Board. She was a true advocate.  

Donna Vasquez leaves her beloved husband, Alex Vasquez Sr., her son Paul Vasquez and his wife Wendy of Tokyo, Japan; and daughter Sky Vasquez of Portland, Oregon.  She is also survived by her brothers and sisters, John Manuelito II of Bishop, California, Elizabeth Manuelito of Bishop, Leanna Mojado and her husband Denny Mojado of Riverside, Dolly Manuelito of Bishop, Joseph Manuelito of Bishop, and Mark Manuelito and his wife Lisa Manuelito, also from Bishop.  She also leaves several grandchildren, nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by her oldest son, Alex Vasquez Jr.

A Cry Dance will be held for Donna Vasquez on Friday, June 21, 2019, at 564 N. Winuba Lane, Bishop. It will begin at dusk (estimated time: 8:30 pm).  A Funeral service will be held on Saturday, June 22, 2019 at the Barlow Lane Gym, 390 N. Barlow Lane, Bishop, that begins at 10:00 am. Lunch will be served following the service.  

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Eastern Sierra Cancer Alliance. Donna was grateful to them for all of their support they provided her son’s battle with cancer.  

Best Regards,

City of Bishop asks, “Whats Next?”

City of Bishop wants your input

The City of Bishop invites the public to a series of meetings over the next three weeks to gain public input on the city’s next “active” transportation projects. The meetings will  be at noon and at 5 pm on May13th and on May 20th in the conference room at City Hall.
The state’s Active Transportation Program is intended to promote public health and safety by encouraging active forms of transportation such as walking, biking, and skateboarding to get to school, work, or every day activities. Active Transportation
Program funds can be used for construction projects such as sidewalks and bicycle paths, and for non-construction projects like bicycle education and safety programs.  Projects which have the potential to close “gaps” in the non-motorized route network
and the potential to increase safety for bicyclists and pedestrians are of particular importance to the ATP. The City of Bishop has the opportunity to apply for this funding if it can identify good projects and apply by the end of this month. Good Bishop projects
probably include sidewalks and bike paths but public input is needed to know for sure.  The city’s current list of future street projects includes 13 sidewalk and path projects.

The city needs the public’s help to identify more projects and then to figure out which ones are the best to propose for Active Transportation Program (ATP) funds. To get this public help in time for the application due this month, a series of meetings are scheduled over the next 3 weeks. Public input is invited by coming to the meetings or by contacting the City of Bishop Department of Public Works by mail, email, phone, or in person.
The first meetings are scheduled for May 13th and are intended to gather ideas for good ATP projects that might not yet be on the city’s project list. There will be two meetings that day, one at noon and one at 5 pm. Maps showing existing sidewalks and paths,
along with other information, will be available for reference. The two meetings that day will be the same so the public should feel free to come to either or both, whatever is convenient.
The second pair of meetings are scheduled for May 20th and are intended to identify the best projects out of all those identified by that time. Like the previous pair of meetings, there will be two meetings that day, one at noon and one at 5 pm. Maps and projects
lists, will be available for reference at that meeting. The two meetings will be the same so the public should feel free to come to either or both. The City of Bishop appreciates public involvement identifying the best projects to propose for Active Transportation Program funding.

For more information contact City of Bishop Public Works at publicworks@ca-bishop.us or 760-873-8458.

city of bishop public works, bishop ca news, active transportation program funding

Volunteer with ES Wildlife Care

VOLUNTEERS KEEP EASTERN SIERRA WILDLIFE CARE FLYING

What does an Eastern Sierra Wildlife Care volunteer do? Find out at ESWC’s free annual New Volunteer Orientation on Sunday, March 22, from 1-3 PM at the Center. As a non-profit organization, Eastern Sierra Wildlife Care depends on volunteers to keep things going.
Some volunteers serve as members of their Board of Directors.
(Two Board Members recently developed an outreach program aimed at preventing fishing line/wildlife entanglement.)
They currently need to fill some Board vacancies.
A network of volunteers from Walker to Death Valley are called on when they need a Bald Eagle rescued from June Lake or an injured Golden Eagle transferred to the Raptor Center in Ojai. More volunteers for the Rescue, Return and Transport Team are always needed to help them cover more than 2,000 square miles.
ESWC brings Living with Wildlife programs to schools and community events—it takes volunteers to make that happen—and a whole lot more!
As part of working with animals (Animal and Foster Care, Rescue and Transport), Rescue and Return Team volunteers built a platform high in a pine and reunited a young Bald Eagle with his family last July. Last month, a Transport Team volunteer drove a White Pelican to Ridgecrest where it was picked up for transfer to water bird specialists in Orange County. Nearly 40 volunteers help with ESWC’s annual Wild Spirits fundraiser. Others help with building and repairs, others with website and social media.
Don’t miss this opportunity to learn more about the work of Eastern Sierra Wildlife Care, get a close up view of our facility, and meet Razzle the Raven, Red-tailed Hawks Bullitt and Spirit, our Wildlife Ambassadors.
Space is limited, so call ESWC at 760-872-1487 to reserve a place—or for further information.

climber in tree

Skilled volunteer climber returns a young Great Horned Owl to his nest.

DSCN0556

Hit by a car, a juvenile Aplodontia (Mountain Beaver) arrives at ESWC.

Any questions?? Call Cindy at 760-872-1487.

Eastern Sierra Wildlife Care is a federal and state tax-exempt charitable, 501(c)3 organization [EIN 03-0409463]

eastern sierra wildlife care, eastern sierra news, bishop news