Tag Archives: KIBS BISHOP

Bishop City Council Vote to Protect Renters with Emergency Ordinance

The Bishop City Council voted 5-0 in favor of adopting an emergency ordinance that will prohibit landlords from dramatically increasing rent on tenants and evicting residents without just cause. The city ordinance is in response to a loophole created by AB 1482, which is designed to protect tenants from egregious hikes in an individual’s monthly rent. However, from now until January 1, 2020, landlords had the option to dramatically increase rent before the ordinance was made official.

Mayor Pro Tempore, Laura Smith spoke about the possible rental hikes saying, “We are not looking to handcuff landlords by passing this ordinance. There is a drastic shortage of housing in the area, and people are probably not going to find a place to live. We don’t want people kicked out of their homes with the cold weather and no place to go.”

Councilman, Stephen Muchovej expressed similar feelings, indicating that the council’s job is to help its citizens. “We are here to help people out in town. We should prevent these sort of scenarios [subjecting tenants to rental hikes] from happening.”

Bishop resident Steve Seats, who was previously evicted from his home at the Primrose Lane Apartments in town due to a rent increase, spoke to the city council and expressed his feelings on the matter.

“It sickens me when I heard that over forty families were at risk of being evicted from their homes.” Seats said.

Seats, who now says he lives in his car and spends most nights in the parking lot adjacent to the City of Bishop Council Chambers, also told the public about his experience of allegedly being harassed by a member of the Bishop Police Department since being evicted from his apartment.

“Last night an officer threatened to arrest me for sleeping in my car in the parking lot.” Seats said. “The officer became progressively more and more aggravated when I did not comply. The behavior was inappropriate by the police force.”

Shortly after Seats spoke, Mayor Jim Ellis gave his thoughts on the ordinance saying, “This ordinance is to protect our citizens.” Ellis also added that the housing market makes things difficult for low-income individuals. “We have a tough housing market here. I don’t think any of us have a problem with voting in favor of an ordinance.”

Laws Museum Appoint New Museum Administrator

The Board of Directors of Laws Museum is pleased to announce the selection of Raven Angeles as our museum Administrator. Since beginning her employment as office manager in May 2019, Ms. Angeles has consistently met the highest professional standards in her position. Her bookkeeping and office management expertise is matched by her problem solving skills and her dedication to do what is best for the museum, staff, volunteers, and visitors. The Board of Directors looks forward to a new and exciting future for Laws Museum with Raven Angeles on the team as our Administrator!

When you visit Laws Museum, what you experience is the result of the many years Howard Holland has dedicated to the museum as our Exhibits Manager. At the October meeting of the board of directors Howard Holland announced his retirement and his intention to “pass the torch” to Katie Olson. We are thrilled to announce Katie Olson has accepted the position of Exhibits Manager. Katie was elected to the Laws Railroad Museum & Historical Site Board of Directors in June after retiring from a thirty eight year career with Walt Disney Imagineering. Katie brings a wealth of experience to the Laws Railroad Museum and we are excited about her new role at the museum.

Please join us in congratulating Katie and Raven on their new positions!

Funds Pour in for Fuel Reduction Projects in Mammoth

In March of 2019, the Mammoth Lakes Fire Safe Council was awarded a $1,000,000 grant from the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) to complete the Lakes Basin Hazardous Fuels Reduction Project (‘project’). The ‘project’ provides valuable fuel reduction treatment on 630 acres in the Mammoth Lakes Basin to reduce wildfire risk, improve forest health and protect the watershed. The contractor’s proposed cost of the project resulted in an $181,275 deficit. The following agencies recently made significant financial contributions to support the project’s completion:

Los Angeles Department of Water and Power ($60,425) Mono County ($30,425) Town of Mammoth Lakes ($60,425) Edison International – a parent company of Southern California Edison ($30,000)

“I am grateful these agencies and SNC recognized the importance of this project” stated Dave Easterby, MLFSC president. “The success of this project will be recognized by their financial contribution, along with the tireless efforts from volunteer individuals, including our primary grant writer, Matthew Diener, MLFSC Director at Large. We’re fortunate to be working with dedicated like-minded individuals within a community of supportive agencies.”

“This project’s success demonstrates the power in multi-agency collaboration and what volunteer groups can accomplish.” Juliana Jones, Secretary of MLFSC, continued “I am grateful so many entities, who care about the safety of our community, came together to provide financial contributions to this regional support effort.”

The Lakes Basin Hazardous Fuels Reduction Project will be completed in Fall of 2020. 568 acres were completed this season, providing valuable protection to the Mammoth Lakes Community. Inyo National Forest, Mammoth Community Water District and Mammoth Lakes Fire Protection District supported the ‘project’ development and grant administration. The MLFSC is thankful for the overwhelming support received by the community and recent financial contributions from other local agencies.

High Winds Rip Down Trees and Turnover Semi-Truck

A wind prohibition for trucks was issued at 12:22 PM on May 16 after sustained 40 mile per hour winds with gusts as high as 80 miles per hour.

Originally, the prohibition existed from Bishop to Lone Pine by a CHP Officer in the area, but it was determined necessary to implement the ban all the way down to Pearsonville.

There has been damage to trees along the entire corridor, as well as damage to vehicles.

One vehicle which sustained major damage was a semi-truck driving in the Fort Independence Travel Plaza area. The sixteen-wheeler sustained a large amount of destruction to the front side after it overturned on the shoulder of the road. The vehicle’s hood was torn off after the accident.

According to Bishop Area CHP, no injuries were sustained during the rollover.

Former Corporal in Sheriff’s Department Arrested

Former Inyo County Sheriff’s Department Corporal Nick Vaughn was arrested today by Investigators from the Inyo County District Attorney’s office on charges stemming from an alleged misappropriation of public funds.

 

After an internal investigation, the Sheriff’s Department referred the case to the District Attorney’s office for a criminal investigation.  After a lengthy investigation, a criminal complaint has been filed charging Mr. Vaughn with misappropriating over $10,000.00 that had been collected by him from participants in the Sheriff’s Department Work Release Program.  Participants in the program are required to pay certain fees to the Department, and it is alleged that a portion of those fees were diverted to Mr. Vaughn’s personal use or the use of other individuals.  Mr. Vaughn was the supervisor of the Work Release Program from approximately May, 2014 to March, 2018.

 

At this time, no other employees of the Sheriff’s Department are implicated in the investigation.

 

Mr. Vaughn was booked at the Inyo County Jail.  Bail on the arrest warrant was set at $15,000.00.

 

The District Attorney reminds the public that a defendant in any criminal case is presumed to be innocent until the contrary is proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

Wildlife Safety Bill Passes in California, Allowing the Consumption of Roadkill

The Inyo County Board of Supervisors approved correspondence for an act that will improve collaboration and documentation between agencies when accounting for wildlife deaths due to vehicles.

Senate bill 395, also known the Wildlife Safety act will provide better options for those who hit wildlife.

Currently, organizations such as CDFW, Caltrans, and CHP do not coloborate when it comes to documenting wildlife involved in accidents. With the new bill, the hope is that combined statistics will lead to less wild animal fatalities.

Another component of this measure will address what happens to a wounded or dead animal on the road. Currently, it is illegal to transport a dead wild animal. With the passing of this new law, animal carcasses can be moved and even donated.

The policy would allow for the meat of dead animals to be given to charities or prisons to feed people if it is deemed acceptable to consume. Some homeless shelters and prisons accept this type of meat for use in their pantry.

However, the meat is non-FDA approved, but depending on the injury, it can be deemed “safe for consumption.”

California’s Roadkill Bill was created by state senator Bob Archuleta, who said the measure would save “hundreds of thousands of pounds of healthy meat” from roadkill by using it to “feed those in need.”

Other states with similar laws include Oregon, Alaska, Colorado, Washington, North Dakota, Arizona, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Kansas, and Florida.

Numerous DUI Arrests Processed During Holiday Period

From December 28th to January 1st, the California Highway Patrol conducted a Maximum Enforcement Period (MEP) focusing on impaired driving. During this time, all available officers were on duty, conducting traffic stops and enforcing the law on the highways throughout California.

There were a number of arrests for DUI’s, for the CHP Inland Division. The Inland Division includes the areas of the Inland Empire, Bridgeport, and Bishop.

California Highway Patrol arrested 96 individuals who were driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance in the Inland Division Area. The numbers are up from last year, with 93 arrests occurring during the maximum enforcement period. Additionally, out of the 96 arrests, three were fatal.

Although a substantial amount of people were arrested in the Inland Empire for impaired driving, the numbers were much better when it comes to the Eastern Sierra. There were zero arrests for DUI’s in the Bishop area this year, and only one last year.

The Bridgeport district assisted Mammoth Lakes Police Department during the MEP in the town of Mammoth Lakes, which hosted over 15,000 visitors between December 28th through January 1st. CHP Bridgeport processed 3 DUI’s, while Mammoth Lakes Police Department arrested three more people for driving under the influence. Two out of the three arrests made by Mammoth Lakes Police involved vehicle collisions, however, none of the collisions involved major injuries.