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March 21, 2012     Feather River Bulletin
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March 21, 2012
 

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lOB Wednesday, March 21, 2012 Bulletin, EDITORIAL AN D OPINION Progressive, Record, Re porter EDITORIAL "Never doubt that a small group of thought- ful, committed citizens can change the world. In- deed, it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead The thoughtful, committed members of the Plumas-Eureka State Park Association (PESPA) may not have changed the world, but they have changed things in Plumas County. The group's leadership announced last week that the associa- tion has struck a deal with the California Depart- ment of Parks and Recreation to keep Plumas- Eureka State Park open for the next two years. Plumas County's only state park has lived un- der the threatening cloud of closure since 2008, when it made then-Gov. Schwarzenegger's list of 28 parks to shutter. Last year, the park was closed for an unrelated cleanup of old mining materials. It was set to be mothballed this sum- mer. The park is one of Plumas County's biggest tourist draws, attracting more than 50,000 visi- tors a year. One of the most popular in the coun- ty, its campground perennially sells out. It is an important part of the tourist economy m Eastern Plumas. The 200-strong association stepped up to the plate and negotiated a "donor" agreement with the state. Under the deal, PESPA will donate $35,000 a year for the next two years to help keep the park operating. The parks department will continue to provide a ranger, perform needed maintenance and operate the campground. PESPA says it has the cash on hand to make this year's donation, but it will need to raise more fun0s to make next year's payment. In a let- ter to members, the PESPA board wrote, "With- out the support of PESPA members and park vol- unteers such as you we will not be able to make this plan work. PESPA will be relying heavily on memberships as well as financial donations from our members and supporters to secure the funds need,ed to pay o.c park expenses. We are also cur- rently planning a number of fundraising activi- ties to raise the additional funds needed." We encourage you to help as you can: buy a membership, make a donation, volunteer for an event, attend an event, make a purchase at the museum store (proceeds go to PESPA). You can find more information at plumas- eureka.org or contact board president Jay Skutt at jtskutlbut@yahoo.com or 836-4135 or board vice president Lyn Nafzgar at mtndream@accessbee.com or 836-1183. PESPA is living proof that we may not be able to control what the state does to us, but we can control how we respond. The group is a powerful example of taking local control of a local resource for the benefit of the larger com- munity. PESPA has our support, our respect and our gratitude. Editorials are written by members of the editorial board, which consists of the publisher, the managing editor and the appropriate staff writer or writers, and should be considered the opinion of the newspaper. Fea bhshlng ewspaper f Breaking News .... go to plumasnews.com Michael C. Taborski ............. Publisher Keri B. Taborski ...Legai Advertising Dept. Delaine Fragnoli ........ Managing Editor Alicia Knadler ........ Indian Valley Editor Shannon Morrow .......... Sports Editor Ingrid Burke ................ Copy Editor Staff writers: Michael Condon Dan McDonald Ruth Ellis Brian Taylor Will Farris Kayleen Taylor Jordan Clary Debra Moore Mona Hill Sam Williams Susan Cort Johnson Jason Theobald Diana Jorgenson M. Kate West Feather River Westwood Bulletin PinePress (530) 283-0800 (530) 256-2277 Lassen County Chester Progressive Times (530) 258-3115 (530) 257-53211 Indian Valley Portola Reporter Record (530) 832-4646 (530) 284-7800 Nat Geo puts justice over ratin MY TURN DAN McDONALD Staff Writer dmcdonald@plumasnews.com When Plumas County's district attorney mentioned what he was planning to do, I had a bit of a choking episode. You probably know thekind drinking coffee and breathing in the same motion. It wasn't pretty. "Wow (cough). Good luck with that! You are wasting your time," I said as I mopped my desk with the sleeve of my sweater. "You would have a better chance winning the lottery." He didn't hear me. Email exchanges don't work like that. The next morning I had a phone message from him. Something about "Big news." I couldn't believe it. He pulled it off. David Hollister somehow convinced a na- tional television network to pull a major segment of one of its most popular shows' season premiere .... And he did it just a few days before it was supposed to air. What the... ? How in the... ? For the sake of seeing that justice was fairly served in a rural Northern California community, National Geographic agreed to pull a segment of its acclaimed "Wild Jus- tice" series. The episode featured graphic footage at the scene of a shooting July 2, 2011, near Antelope Lake. A Susanville man died after being shot in the'head that night. A Reno man is in the Plumas County jail charged with killing him and shooting two of his friends with an assault rifle. Turns out a film rew for National Geo- graphic was tagging along with Fish and Game wardens who were the first officers on the scene. I viewed some of the episode footage. It's not for everyone, but you've probably watched something similar if you've ever tuned into "Cops." Hollister, who will be prosecuting the case when it goes before a jury Sept. 10, was horrified. Not by the footage. He's seen much worse. But he knew the chances of finding 12 im- partial jurors in Plumas County which will be a daunting task already would be many times tougher with those TV images burned into people's mental screen savers. Even the defense attorneys, Richard Young and John Ohlson, of Reno, agreed with Hollister. Both sides want a chance to present their case. Who knows? The "Wild Justice" footage might even be used as evidence dur- ing the trial. But the attorneys want the evi- dence to be presented in context, not a blunt-force broadcast into the living rooms of potential jurors and their kids. Not to mention the trauma it could cause victims' families. The attorneys joined forces to plead their case to the network. Hollister told National Geographic execu- tives that if the trial had to be moved out of the county because of the pre-trial hype, Plumas County taxpayers would have to pay for the change of venue .... The cost could reach $100,000. The amazing part of this story is that the CEO of National Geographic was listening. Keep in mind, this was the season pre- miere of "Wild Justice," which the network had spent tens of thousands of dollars pro- moting to a nationwide audience. This was no small deal. And it is beyond rare for a network to even consider this sort of self-censorship without a legal injunction. ff anything, the media tends to recoil and stand up for our constitutional rights when someone tries to tell us how to do our job. That sort of outside pressure actually prompts us to try harder to get the story out to the public. And I'm just talking about local news and our 20,000 readers. Multiply that,number by 50 and you are getting close to National Geo- graphic's March 11 audience. But National Geographic stepped back, took a look at the situation and decided that "Wild Justice" shouldn't stand in the way of true justice in our small community. Instead of trying to win the ratings war, National Geographic thought about what was best for the family of a dead Susanville man, the family of a Reno man accused of killing him, and 20,000 people -- 12 of whom will be jurors in September. When I spoke to National Geographic Channel's communications director, she said the network was simply trying to do the right thing. Fairness ahead of ratings and profits? That's refreshing. I was already a big National Geographic fan. And the gesture they made by pulling this show says an enormous amount about the network's culture. They aren't denying us a chance to watch the "Wild Justice" episode. They are just waiting to air it at the appropriate time. Where in the World? 2 Mark Ratledge, of Greenville, and DeAnna Welch, of Lake Almanor, learn basket weaving from Niegal, the instructor at Swept Away in Negril, Jamaica. Next :time~/dt~travel, ~ I - share-;d/here y~i~u"t~/e'6"('~l~yd{~i~ your" ~" l'" local newspaper along and i~i~t~ding" / it in a photo. Then email the photo to smorrow@plu masnews.com. Include your name, contact information and brief details about your photo. We \ . may publish It as space permits. Rd MEMBE1K WHEN board feet deck on hand until woods opera- Jose, won $304,890 on a Lotto 6-4-9 ticket tions can commence, he purchased at Quincy Exxon. KERI TABORSKI Historian 75 YEARS AGO ............. 1937 The two sawmills of the Quincy Lumber Company will start operations April 15, an- nounced general manager C.A. King. The sawmills are expected to saw 20 million board feet at Sloat and 15 million board feet at Quincy, resulting in the biggest year for the company since 1929. The timber is be- ing cut from both the Butterfly Valley and Poplar Valley logging areas. Sawing operations will start at the Mead- ow Valley Lumber Company at Spanish Ranch next week, with a three million 50 YEARS AGO ........... 1962 One hour and 12 minutes after it left Chico, a gondola which carried an United States Air Force experimental balloon crashed near Taylorsville/Genesee. The gondola, with contents, weighed 2311 pounds and was equipped with 16 cameras. The balloon continued to drift over Plumas County towards Reno. l0 YEARS AGO ....... 2002 Without missing a deadline or a publica- tion date, Feather Publishing Company picked up its printing presses, newsprint and its crew and moved to a new location 287 Lawrence Street in Quincy (site of the former Quincy Lumber & Supply build- ing) from its 555 Main Street location, Feather Pubtishing's historic looking brick building since 1979. 25 YEARS AGO ......... 1987 Portola resident Bill Daw won $200,000 Note: items included in the weekly Remember in the California Lottery Big Spin Saturday When column are taken from our bound newspa- in Sacramento. Daw, who works as a per archives and represent writing styles of that garbage truck driver in Portola said he particular period. The spelling and grammar are plans to continue working. Charles Taylor not edited, so the copy is presented as it actually of Keddie, a retired carpenter from San appeared in the original newspaper. True confessions of a lifelong packrat MY TURN ALICIA KNADLER Indian Valley Editor a knadler@~)lumasnews.com I'm back off the wagon again, drat that online auction anyway. I do have piles of things to pour over in glee, yes. But where will I put it all? Oh, the shame of it. For decades, my modus operandi was to collect things at yard sales and thrift shops; it was always stuff I needed, right? At least that's what I told myself at the time. Once there was that oddly shaped or- ange lounge chair that rocked a little. That would fit nicely on the'back porch, I thought to myself. And then there was a unique plant stand I ended up with; a great find, except I have no knack for houseplant care. After a year or so of collecting, I'd need to have a yard sale of my own, and guess what I sold? Much of the stuffcollected the previous year. Once I even drafted my kids to help me I began'looking at the thirigs I bought, salvage stuff from a dumpsite off a dirt too, as if I would have to give something road. away in order to make room for something In the midst of pairing up dozens of new. shoes, local law enforcement showed up Trouble is, I don't want to give anything with a chatter of radio noise, up. We were obviously scavengers and not So instead of pouring over my new piles, dumpers, loading things onto our truck I sat down to read more about the issue. Is while warily watching him exit his vehi- it a real problem? cle. He walked over slowly, stopping once Well, if it weren't I guess there wouldn't or twice to cough, or so I thought at the be television shows about it, now would time. there? I laugh while giving myself a swift Looking back, I know he was more likely mental knock on the noggin. striving to maintain his usual stern vis- Wait that might be it. I read a 2004 ar- age. I think I have that same effect on oth- ticle from WebMD: "Researchers Find er people sometimes. Clues to 'Pack-Rat' Urge: Study Identifies Anyway, he chatted for awhile, found Brain Region That Controls Collecting," one of the missing shoes for us then ran by Miranda Hitti. for his patrol car and left with cloud of Collecting things is a "perfectly healthy dust in his wake. behavior"; look at packrats, hamsters, This wasn't the epiphany for me though, birds and other animals that collect things My packrat tendencies didn't really bother besides food for storage. me until after watching a Suze Orman But brain injury can result in abnormal video about respecting your money and collecting behavior, as identified in a the things you buy with it. study, especially if there was an injury to I needed to change the way I bought and the right, frontal lobe. used things. If the things I bought just clut- Whew, that leaves me out. I was knocked tered up a closet and were never or rarely on the head pretty hard once, but not from used, then I was not respecting my finan- the front. cial health. So maybe I'm not so abnormal when it A good purging was what I needed, and comes to collecting stuff I don't really the thrift shops benefited from a mediocre need. Maybe. one, anyway. Can you hear me laughing at myself?.