Fires claim another life

Aug 14, 2018

Firefighter dies in Mendocino Complex fires

The Press Democrat's MARTIN ESPINOZA: "The largest wildfire in California history claimed its first victim — a firefighter from Utah — Monday evening as it continued its relentless march north, threatening popular vacation hamlets around Lake Pillsbury in the Mendocino National Forest."


"Sean Kavanaugh, an incident commander for Cal Fire, said the firefighter was working on an “active portion” of the Ranch fire when he was injured."


“The firefighter was airlifted to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries,” Kavanaugh said during a 10 p.m. news conference Monday. “We are extremely heartbroken for this loss.”


READ MORE related to Energy & Environment: Opinion: Emergencies highlight critical tribal role -- SHERRY TREPPA in Capitol WeeklyCalifornia's biggest enivornmental challednges? Water. Climate change. Political hot air. - Sacramento Bee

The human side of California's housing meltdown


Capitol Weekly's BARBARA HARVEY/KRISTOPHER HOOKS/MARIVEL GUZMAN: "Brianne Tufts is exhausted. This is the third place Tufts has lived in as many years, and she’s worried she’ll have to move again because her apartment complex might increase the rent now that her lease has expired."


"It’s just after 11 a.m. on a Sunday in April, and the 24-year-old mother of two sits on the balcony of her cramped 2-bedroom south Sacramento apartment watching intently as her daughters play in the living room and her boyfriend, Anthony Grandinetti, cleans the kitchen."


“The uncertainty is exhausting,” Tufts said. “My daughter is 7 and she’s lived in six places already, because as soon as the lease is up, normally we’re bouncing somewhere else.”


Breathing 'a chore.' California wildfires threaten the health of young and old


Kaiser Health News's ANNA GORMAN/ANA B IBARRA: "Debbie Dobrosky noticed a peculiar hue in the sky on Monday — “a very ugly yellow casting” — as she peeked outside. A large cloud of smoke had begun to cover the sun."


"By Tuesday, the smoke was so heavy that “even inside my apartment I’ve had to use my inhaler twice this morning, which is not a no


“Today I’m stuck inside, there’s no going out,” said Dobrosky, 67, who has chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an inflammatory lung condition."


'Shut down the Senate!' Supreme Court confirmation roils Feinstein race


McClatchy DC's EMILY CADEI: "California Sen. Dianne Feinstein is approaching the confirmation process for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh all wrong, according to her opponent in the state’s Democrat-on-Democrat Senate race.


"Feinstein is “playing polite, country-club politics,” as she pursues records from Kavanaugh’s time in the George W. Bush White House, state Sen. Kevin de León complained in a recent e-mail to supporters. And she and other Senate Democrats aren’t leveraging all the procedural tools they have to stall Kavanaugh’s confirmation. As de León told California Democratic activists in July, “We need to shut the Senate down!”


A growing number of California detainees are Indians crossing through Mexico to seek asylum


LA Times's SARAH PARVINI: "On a recent visit to the federal prison in Victorville, U.S. Rep. Mark Takano was caught by surprise. Of the hundreds of immigrants detained there, he learned, possibly 40% had traveled from India seeking asylum."


"The Riverside Democrat had expected to see a high concentration of Central American detainees, many of them fathers who had been separated from their children."


"Not all of the men spoke English. The group appointed a representative, who told Takano that they were supporters of two different political parties and had been persecuted by India’s governing Bharatiya Janata Party."  


Can consumer loans ever be so expensive they break the law? The California Supreme Court says yes


LA Times's JAMES RUFUS KOREN: "California’s high court has ruled that interest rates on consumer loans can be so high that they become “unconscionable” and, therefore, illegal — a decision that could call into question the validity of millions of loans and upend the state’s subprime lending market."


"In a unanimous opinion released Monday morning, the California Supreme Court said courts “have a responsibility to guard against consumer loan provisions with unduly oppressive terms,” including interest rates, despite state laws that have until now allowed lenders to charge whatever the market will bear."


"California lending law sets maximum rates for loans up to $2,499 but no cap on loans of $2,500 and up. However, when lawmakers removed interest-rate caps on those larger loans in the 1980s, they included language that allowed loan terms to be found “unconscionable."


Trump accused of stalling Sacramento streetcar. Locals must prove more, his officials respond


Sacramento Bee's TONY BIZJAK: "A national transportation group on Monday accused the Trump administration of stalling the Sacramento streetcar proposal and 16 other transit projects around the country."


"Transportation For America, a Washington, D.C. lobbying group for transportation, said Trump’s Federal Transit Administration is defying Congress by not allocating $1.4 billion that Congress and the administration agreed in March would be distributed this year."


"“By failing to use these funds, the Federal Transit Administration is driving up the cost of projects, causing unnecessary delay and failing to be the partner in supporting transit that the law requires,” Beth Osborne of TFA said. “It is interesting that an administration so focused on speeding up project delivery has become one of the biggest obstacles for the timely delivery of transit projects."


Religious website triggers complaint against Edwards Air Force Base brigadier general


LA Times's SARAH PARVINI: "A group of U.S. Air Force officers, enlisted personnel and civilian employees is calling for an investigation into the installation commander of Edwards Air Force Base, accusing him of violating Department of Defense policies on religious proselytizing."


"On Sunday, the Military Religious Freedom Foundation made an official demand to Defense Secretary James N. Mattis to “immediately and comprehensively” investigate Air Force Brig. Gen. E. John Teichert."


READ MORE related to Prisons & Public Safety: California's top court rules for police in pursuit accident case -- LA Times's MAURA DOLAN


GSK charged with another homicide in Tulare County


LA Times's PAIGE ST JOHN: "Claude Snelling woke in the night 42 years ago to find a man in his Visalia backyard trying to abduct his 16-year-old daughter. He tried to intervene and was fatally shot."


"Tulare County prosecutors on Monday filed a murder charge against Joseph DeAngelo, 72, bringing the deaths he is accused of to 13 and resolving four decades of police disagreement over whether the Visalia attacker was the same person suspected of killing a Sacramento suburban couple and later raping and slaying 10 people in Southern California — crimes now attributed to the Golden State Killer."


Prosecution rests in Manafort's tax evasion and bank fraud trial


AP:  "Prosecutors on Monday rested their tax evasion and bank fraud case against Paul Manafort, a longtime Washington operator and President Trump's former campaign chairman."


"The case now goes to Manafort's defense team, which is expected to lay the blame for wrongdoing with Richard Gates, the former Manafort protege who says the two committed crimes together. Defense attorneys have called Gates a liar, philanderer and embezzler as they've sought to undermine his testimony."


"The trial is the first to emerge from special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, but neither Manafort nor Gates has been charged in connection with Trump campaign work."


READ MORE related to POTUS45/KremlinGate: Trump signs defense bill named for McCain but doesn't mention him --  AP

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