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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
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March 31, 2010     Feather River Bulletin
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March 31, 2010
 

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FEATHER RIVER Wednesday, March 31, 2010 INC. SMALL TOWN PAPERS 5026 CALIFORNIA AVE SW SEATTLE WA 98136-1208 B 'rounding Areas Since 1866 Vol. 143, No. 34 50 CENTS PDH board poised to set election Linda Satchwell Staff Writer Isatchwell@plumasnews.com County Clerk Kathy Williams has confirmed that her office has counted the signatures and certified the petition for the "Tax Limita- tion Initiative" that would cap the tax to pay for Plumas District Hospital's new build- ing at $50 per $100,000 of assessed home value. Williams' certification states the initiative now is qualified to go to election. She sent proof of certification to PDH by fax Friday, March 26, and also by marl. The next step said Williams, according to elections code, is that the certified results will be presented at the next regular meeting of the PDH board of directors. The direc- tors are scheduled to meet Thursday, April 1. At the meeting or within 10 days thereafter, said Williams, elections code requires the board either "adopt the ordinance without alteration ... or immediately order an election." Because there were enough certified signatures On the petition for either a special mail ballot election (which would take place Aug. 31) or the next general election Nov. 2, it will be up to the district to determine which date to use. With the certification of petitions and reporting to PDH, Williams pointed out her job is done, unless the hospital passes another reso- lution asking her office to run the election. The hospital called a special closed session meet- ing Monday, March 29, at noon. Chief Executive Officer Dick Hathaway reported out See Election, page 11A Water's up! The spring runoff has filled local rivers, creating excellent flow levels for paddlers. Eddy Mutch (above) led a group of kayakers down the North Fork of the Feather River last Wednesday, March 24. Photo by Shannon Morrow School district projects deficit spending ,0000dministration still wants to build a larger reserve Mona Hill Staff Writer mhill@plumasnews.com At the regular Plumas County Office of Education meeting March 9, Director of Business Yvonne Bales tO section returns! II Llllll IlL IIIll ILLk I1! Iq 08805 9327 6 To subscribe to the BuUetin, call 530-283-0800 presented the second interim financial report for the county office of education. She reported an 18.6 percent reduction in revenue, despite a 4.25 COLA adjustment. Bales said the state is only funding about 80 percent of allocations. The reduction is a result of a change in base year deter- mination for ROP, also known as career tech pro- grams, to 2007 - 2008 levels. The 2007 - 2008 school year will be the base year for the next three years at 267 average daily attendance. Re- gardless of actual ADA, the county will receive funding based on the 2007 - 2008 ADA. Although Bales said revenues had increased by $28,300, expenses also in- creased $58,270. The projected fund balance for the first interim budget was $4. For the second interim budget, it had de- creased to a negative $31,287. Bales said the biggest drain on the county side is the County Community School Program. The current year contribution, a stated term for unfunded expense, is pro- jected to be more than $65,000 in unrestricted funds. In addition, the governor proposes a 12 percent cut to administration that in- cludes such expenses as the superintendent's office, in- structional media, technology, data processing, libraries, facilities and maintenance. The exact amount of the cut is still unknown. The outlook is equally grim. State payments for Quality Education Investment Act funds for low-performing schools are coming directly from Tier Ill funds -- more than $3,000 to date. Moreover, although the state has promised a dollar-for-dollar increase to State Fiscal Stabilization Funds, that money is yet to materialize. Known impacts on the current year's budget include $190,000 annually in lost revenue; a 34 percent deferral of 2010 - 2011 Tier III funding for career-tech programs -- even though current Tier III funding is inadequate to meet current staffing levels. For the second interim re- port, Bales expected PCOE to move into deficit spending this year. However, the budget was submitted with a positive certification because cash flow remains positive on the year. Indian Valley trustee Jonathan Kusel asked Bales about significant adjust- ments between budgeted and actual expenses to date and projected year-end totals. As an example, he directed Bales to the line item for services and other expendi- tures. The board-approved operating budget allocated $460,052.54; the actual amount expended, as of the second interim reporting period, was $180,102.58. With only three and a half months remaining in the current fiscal year, the year-end total is projected to be $467,032.54, or $6,980 over budget. Bales said she could not explain the difference with- out going back into the detail for that line item and that she would report back. See Deficit, page 11A PIE FACE! Dr. Sue Segura, the principal at Quincy High School, proves she's a good sport by taking a pie in the face as a fundraiser for the QHS softball team. Conner Turcotte was the lucky student to win the drawing. Photo by Terrie Redkey Electric companies reach settlement Diana Jorgenson Portola Reporter djorgenson@plumasnews.com Plumas-Sierra Rural Elec- tric Cooperative, Plumas and Sierra counties, the city of Portola and the city of Loyal- ton withdrew protests filed with the California Public Utilities Commission when a settlement- agreement was reached with Sierra Pacific Power Company (dba Nevada Energy, but for the purposes of this article called Sierra Pacific) and California Pacif- ic Electric Co., LLC (CalPeco), buyer of Sierra Pa- cific's California holdings. PSREC made a concerted effort to acquire the customer base in the cities of Portola and Loyalton since it was al- ready servicing the rural ar- eas surrounding them. The city and county entities had filed concerns about reliabili- ty, with local line crews and the availability of Sierra Pa- cific Industries' co-genera- tion output at the top of the list. The CPUC had decreed reli- ability issues be satisfied as part of the sale and ordered all parties to reach a settle- ment. Negotiations were prompt and agreement reached in a relatively short time. Although PSREC was not successful in its bid to pur- chase the electrical service areas, it did receive signifi- cant concessions in the form of closer contractual relation- ships with Sierra Pacific in the future, as well as in an agreement with CalPeco to furnish a local line crew and maintenance for Portola and L0yalton. "We're satisfied," said Bob Marshall, general manager for PSREC, adding he was most appreciative of all the community support they re- ceived in trying to purchase the service areas. The agreement outlines the withdrawal of an intercon- nection request to the Fort Sage substation, which would connect PSREC to a high volt- age line in the desert. Mar- shall explained, "We're not giving up on Fort Sage. We agreed to withdraw our ver- sion of that request. We're still working with' entities to build that connection." CalPeco agreed to invest $1 million in the Herlong Trans- mission Project to build transmission lines to Fort See Electric, page 11A