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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
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July 30, 2014     Feather River Bulletin
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July 30, 2014
 

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6B Wednesday, July 30, 2014 Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter EDITORIAL AND OPINION EDITORIAL Continued drought will ultimately lead to serious water wars It's been said that more 21st-century wars will be fought over water than oil. In California, that could mean a civil war. The seeds of conflict are already sprouting -- magnified by a generational drought in the West that could leave our state looking like the Dust Bowl of the 1930s. As we enter the third year of record-low rainfall, state and local government agencies are sounding the alarm. It seems like every day there is another warning or dbclaration concerning water. Whether you want to blame it on human-caused global warming or a natural environmental cycle, there is no denying that California is dry bone dry. In Plumas County, where we live at the top of the watershed surrounded by green trees and mountain springs, it might not seem like a crisis. But closer observation shows that many spring-fed tributaries have been reduced to a trickle. Marshes are dry and anglers are catching warm-water bass in the Feather River instead of trout. To people living in thirsty cities downstream, this is a scary situation. Our neighbors in southern California and the agricultural Central Valley are on edge. They need water and their politicians are willing to fight for it. Leaders in Washington are keeping a close eye on the Golden State which constitutes the eighth largest economy in the world and produces a large portion of the planet's food. A serious water war is on the horizon. Locally, Skirmishes are already breaking out, pitting agencies, communities and neighbors against each other. The Indian Valley water district's plan to sell some of its Round Valley Reservoir water to parched Montecito has many of its customers up in arms particularly local ranchers whose livelihood directly depends on water. It's not just Indian Valley residents who are worried. Local lodging businesses that rely on springs as their sole source of water could be forced to close if they are denied access by the state. They are already being asked to defend their water usage. We all know that conserving water is the right thing to do. But will conservation really solve this crisis? The state is currently about 80 percent below its historical three-year rainfall average. However, recent reports claim California's water rationing has amounted to just a 5 percent cutback. Local services districts are enacting mandatory watering restrictions in response to the state's emergency declaration. Cities downstream have been rationing water for years. But how many unflushed toilets will it take to make up for the 80 percent shortfall? How many more brown lawns? We will all step up our conservation efforts in the weeks and months to come, as we should. Unfortunately, it won't make much difference. In reality, it's the agriculture sector that accounts for about 80 percent of the state's water usage. A small reduction by the farmers and ranchers will have a much more dramatic effect than any mandatory residential restrictions. However, even drastic conservation measures by farmers won't make a dent in the water crisis. The only thing that will solve this problem is rain -- and lots of it. If the rain doesn't show up this fall, we better prepare for water wars. Editorials are written by members of the editorial board and should be considered the opinion of the newspaper. The board consists of the publlsher, managing editor and the appropriate staff writers. F eat00ii!i00bhshmg00 /00wspaper For breaking news, go to plumasnews.com Michael C. Taborski .............. Publisher Keri B. Taborski .... Legal Advertising Dept. Dan McDonald .......... Managing Editor Jenny Lee .................. Photo Editor Ingrid Burke ................. Copy Editor Staff writers: Laura Beaton Carolyn Shipp Michael Condon Makenzie Davis Ruth Ellis Will Farris Susan Cort Johnson Debra Moore Maddie Musante M. Kate West Aura Whittaker Sam Williams James Wilson Samantha P. Hawthorne Feather River Bulletin (530) 283,0800 Portola Reporter (530) 832-4646 Lassen County Times . (530) 257-5321 Indian Valley Record (530) 284-7800 Chester Progressive (530) 258-3115 Westwood PinePress (530) 256-2277 recycled paper Member, California Newspaper Publishers Assoc. Returning to college means new adventure Being a reporter for a small-town newspaper is not an easytask. Being a firey ind4pendent 24-year-old with an i opinion did not make that any better. However, the truthfulness, the forgiveness, the kindness, the passion and the openness of every person I've encountered during my two years at ;' :: the paper is leveling. MY TURN I began my job here challenging the county to invest in its youth; now all I can say is good job. The 5est thing this place has ever done for me is give me a chance. Feather Publishing Co. is just a reflection of the attitude this county CAROLYN SHIPP Staff Writer cshipp@plumasnews.corn has toward its young people. I was empty handed when I came here. Now I have too many opportunities to This week's special days NOT JUST AN ORDINARY DAY COMPILED BY KERI TABORSKI Not just an ordinary day....a sampling of weekly notable special days and facts throughout the year. July 30 1965 United President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Social Security Act into law, establishing Medicare and Medicaid. 1975 Jimmy Hoffa disappears from the parking lot of a restaurant in a suburb of Detroit, Michigan, and is never seen or heard from again. He is declared legally dead in 1982. 2003 In Mexico, the last old-style Volkswagen Beetle rolls off the assembly line. July 31 1930 The mystery radio program "The Shadow" airs for the first time. 2006 Cuban president Fidel Castro hands over power to his brother Raul Castro. 2012 -- American swimmer Michael Phelps breaks the record set in 1964 for the greatest number of medals won at the Olympics. August 1 The traditional birthstone for August is the peridot. 2014 This year, the month of August will contain five Saturdays, and five Sundays. This phenomenon occurs only once every 283 years. Last time was in 1191 and the next will be in 2837. 1976 -- Colorado (The Centennial State) is admitted as the 38th U.S. state. 1964 -- "A Hard Days Night" by the Beatles is number 1 on the Billboard chart. August 2 1790 The first United States census is conducted. 1923 -- United States Vice President Calvin Coolidge, a Republican from Vermont, becomes the 30th President of the United States after the death of President Warren H. Harding. August 3 Today is National Watel:rnelon Day. 1900 m Firestone Tire and Rubber Company is founded in Akron, Ohio 1946 Santa Claus Land, the world's first themed amusement park opens in Santa Claus, Indiana. August 4 Today is National Mustard Day. 1821 -- The Saturday Evening Post is published for the first time. 1892 -- The mother and stepfather of Lizzie Borden are found murdered in their Fall River, Massachusetts, home. August 5 1884 -- The cornerstone for the Statue of Liberty is laid on Liberty Island in New York City harbor. 1914 -- In Cleveland, Ohio, the first electric traffic light is installed in two colors: red and green. 1926 -- Harry Houdini performs his greatest feat,-spending 91 minutes under water in a sealed tank before escaping. 1957 -- "American Bandstand" debuts on the ABC television network. count. All I had to do was be here, and the blessings came pouring down. It is humbling to receive that type of faith from the citizens of this county. Their belief in me has given me an opportunity I never dreamed I would get even though I will have to leave the paper to do it. However, what a perfect circle it is that the institute that motivated me to be up here in the first place has also given me the means to stay. It's been almost seven years since my parents and I took our first trip up to Quincy to sign up for classes at Feather River. Driving through the looming Canyon with the shockingly close river kept me silent with fear the entire way. As soon as we entered Quincy we balked at the one-show movie theatre and the retro hotel we stayed at. I remember looking out the window as we passed through town regretting my confidence that FRC was going to be the place for me, even though I had never even seen the place. Now here I am on the precipice of opportunity after spending summers in Graeagle at a glorified horse camp and winters finishing my education, just to move on to more summers attending countless community events and winters trying to get home to Quincy before the snow fell. After a few years of adapting and growing up, I am returning to Feather River College this time with a considerable less amount of fear, and an exceptional amount of excitement, as the executive director of the Feather River College Foundation. Though I will miss the people and places I have experienced since I began my job at the paper, I guess I'm a Golden Eagle through and through. I've changed since I started working at the paper. I've laid claim to this place. All the drama, all the shortcomings, all of the things that would drive a local away and over time I have found myself an advocate for this community. I had no tolerance for negativity, and I'm sure it showed in my writing. I had no interest inruining someone's life with print, and I'm sure it frustrated a few radicals. I'm sorry I'm not sorry. I am seeing that Plumas County is a continuous fountain of adventures and I'm on to my next one; I just won't be writing about it every week. So cheers to you all, and here's to joining the ' majority of the county on the other side of a newspaper. R_EMEMBER WHEN KERI TABORSKI Historian 75 YEARS AGO ..... 1939 The ranchers of Sierra Valley will be well prepared if the Mormon cricket grasshopper pests invades that section again next year. A carload of bran to be mixed with a poison mixture will be used if needed next summer. 50 YEARS AGO ..... 1964 A brilliantly colored totem pole has been erected at Peninsula Village on the Lake Almanor Peninsula by the Peninsula Village Business Association. The association was established in November 1961 to promote civic and commercial recognition. 25 YEARS AGO ..... 1989 Candidates for the Plumas County Sweetheart of the Mountains at the upcoming Plumas County Fair this year are: Christa Kleinhans, Angela Miller, J.J. Smith, Hannah Kolz, Crystal Gichun, Jennifer Nisbet, Janissa Adams. They will compete to succeed last years Sweetheart of the Mountains Tara Crawford. 1O YEARS AGO ..... 2004 It was decided that Sierra County will pay its fair share out of their county budget for expenses of the Plumas-Sierra Fair since they do share the facilities and are included in the Fair's name. Seneca Healthcare District executive officer Ray Marks has resigned, having been in that position since August 2000. Salinas Memorial Hospital has donated a much needed heart monitor machine to Indian Valley Hospital, The monitor, which Indian Valley Hospital has not been able to fund, updates the hospital by about 40 years. Note: items included in the weekly Remember When column are taken from our bound newspaper archives and represent writing styles of that particular period. The spelling and grammar are not edited, so the copy is presented as it actually appeared in the original newspaper. From trail to page:finding the human story The crunch of gravel broke the silence as we walked into the night, finding our footing under a sky scattered with stars. Over the course of one week, we leapt into frigid water, found frog eggs glistening like purple pearls under the sand, and slept through the Crisp bite of early autumn air. But by the time I returned to the reality of a school bus and multiplication tables, Outdoor Education Camp left me with an important lesson: you can learn as much outside the classroom as you can inside it. We discovered a forest full of stories, from the tracks mountain lions leave to the lore loggers and foresters hold. Everyone had something to teach us; everything had a story to tell. Nine years later, this passion for finding storytellers led me to Finland in search of the country's last rune-singer. On the rim of the Arctic Circle, in a timber house half-buried by snow, Jussi Huovinen sat before a small fn'e, an arthritic finger poised to pluck his wooden kantele. Dust danced off its steel strings as snowflakes fell against the windowpane. The smell of boiling lamb warmed the room. Three hundred yards away, a tower of blackened steel commanded the treeline along the Russian-Finnish border, an ominous reminder of a history inked in bloodshed. My time with Jussi in Viena Karelia transported me to a world frozen in time. MY TURN AUSTIN HAGWOOD Staff Writer austin.g.hagwood.1@nd.edu For thousands of years, songs echoed here while cutting trees and weaving nets, in fields of wheat and fields of war. By the shores of his slush-scoured lake, time is measured in crop seasons and hunting harvests, in long darkness and midnight suns. But you don't need to go to Finland to fmd shining examples of the human spirit. When I in'st heard Bob Schoensee of Graeagle was a WorldWar 11 veteran, I didn't expect to meet a man who swam 150 yards to Omaha Beach and back to sea five times to rescue drowning men. I couldn't imagine the soldier who met General Patton returning to Plumas County to teach in Graeagle, become superintendent of schools, and serve as founding director of Feather River College and Plumas Bank. The Plumas County Museum also offers glimpses into a time when the Maidu built a flourishing culture in our hills and valleys, when miners toiled in the heart of mountains and Chinese immigrants worked under railroad tracks and racism. These lives happened. These legacies matter. Stories like this surround us, yet we walk past them every day. Each elder who passes away is the equivalent of a library burning to the earth. And instead of seeking the words of wise men and women, we find solace in cellphone screens. If anything threatens an understanding of our place in the human story, it is our changing idea of which stories matter. We obsess over the digital oblivion of Facebook, sharing everything yet accomplishing nothing. News feeds overload us with thousands of images and sound bites, placing the president's speech alongside Kim Kardashian's baby. Deleting a search history has replaced seeking our human history. We log onto Facebook hoping to feel better and often leave feeling worse. With our noses so close to the glare of an iPhone, people like Bob Schoensee and Jussi are easy to miss. So put down the phone for a minute. A cab driver in San Francisco or a hike to Spanish Peak may have as much to teach you as a college professor. Take a second look at the stranger next to you, and start living a story worth telling.