The Dawson Creek RCMP need your help to find a man who escaped from the Dawson Creek psychiatric ward.The RCMP say the male left the hospital in a silver or grey luxury car. The male is described as caucasian, 5’1” and 190 pounds. The male has blonde hair and was last seen wearing a hospital gown and baseball cap.Police believe the male may be traveling towards Hythe or Grande Prairie.- Advertisement -The male is considered dangerous and should not be approached.The RCMP have not released the man’s name or a photo.If you see this person, call 911 immediately. Advertisement
Rising lake levels could affect residents living beside Moberly Lake, near Chetwynd.The Peace River Regional District has issued a warning to residents that higher than normal snow packs, along with recent precipitation and warm weather conditions have raised water levels to or above the high water marks on the lake.- Advertisement -The District says it is concerned since the area is expected to see more precipitation over the next week, further increasing water levels in the lake.It is asking residents to either move or secure their boats, equipment, fuel tanks, pesticides, garbage and other personal items from low lying areas around the lake.Residents are also encouraged to refer to the District’s website for information on potential flooding areas and precautions they can take.
160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Re: “Lake Balboa beckons” (Feb. 4): The debate over the name change shows how disenfranchised neighborhood councils are. Instead of using some common sense and coming up with a viable solution, they argue over petty ideas. Here is my idea for a compromise: From the 405 to Hayvenhurst is West Van Nuys; from Hayvenhurst West is Lake Balboa. Ergo Van Nuys Airport is still in Van Nuys, they have a name change (like Hollywood v. West Hollywood) and the rest have their Lake Balboa. Sounds too easy for anyone to listen or agree. – J. Don Buchanan Van Nuys True colors Re: “Debate on Iraq measure blocked” (Feb. 6): Senate Republicans have finally shown their true colors: party first, country second. They have finally, blatantly proven that it is politics before patriotism. Now when they appear on the Sunday talk shows or speak before their constituents and say they feel the war is going wrong, you know they’re either flat0out lying to gain votes in the next election, or, worse yet, they’re being hypocritical and will refuse to act on their own convictions when it really counts. – Sharon Graham Huntington Beach Part of the problem I have one question for all the liberals and Democrats: What are you doing to ensure the safety and survival of the United States of America? Bringing home the troops won’t do that. Criticizing every plan the president has won’t do that. Unanimously voting for General Petraeus (the author of the surge), and then not giving him the support or tools to accomplish the job you voted him in to do won’t do that. Discussing whether we should or should not have gone to war won’t do that. If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem. Liberals and Democrats offer no solutions, so they are part of the problem, and until they can answer my question, quite irrelevant. – Craig Hawley Reseda Dumb luck Re: “Bush betting on luck in budget,” Feb. 6: Bush betting on luck in budget! Dear me! That’s like buying a lottery ticket and planning the family budget based on the presumption of winning. This is almost funny if it weren’t so very dangerous for the future of our country. – Dante F. Rochetti West Hills No compassion The $101 billion in Medicare and MediCal cuts in Bush’s budget will either mean higher medical costs for those least able to afford it, or more red ink for hospitals and more hospital closures, further straining a stretched-out emergency-care system when it should be strengthened in the face of terrorism threats, or both. Is ensuring continued tax breaks for Bush’s wealthiest political base worth the danger and suffering it will cause? Bush says he is Christian and claimed to be a compassionate conservative, but this choice is neither compassionate nor Christian. – Lloyd A. Dent Studio City Doesn’t add up Re Unified front defeats council (Feb. 4): Something doesn’t make sense. Hotel employees are fighting for living wages, therefore if hotels are saving so much money by paying low wages, why are their room rates and services charges constantly rising? – Sandy Sand West Hills Animal euthanasia Someone didn’t check the numbers. The euthanasia rate did not go down in 2006. It’s not on the way out. This is the first time in at least six years that the total euthanasia rate did not decline. Only dog euthanasia went down by 4 percent, which is the smallest decrease in at least six years. Cat, bunny and all other animal euthanasia actually went up. Most of these “new” programs which Ed Boks likes to take credit for were actually existing programs which he just renamed or they have not yet been implemented. – Mary Cummins Animal Advocates Los Angeles Raise the fares Re: “It could be the end of the lines” (Feb. 5): Metro threatens to drastically cut bus service even as it keeps fares artificially low at $1.25 a ride. Interestingly, Metro is also offering 50-cent rides in February on some of these bus lines, believing it will foster ridership growth. This ignores the real problem: Most of said lines are infrequent and end their services just after rush hour. Other cities have raised their fares, often to $2 a ride, to preserve and even increase bus service. They know that abundant and reliable services – not cheap fares – is what truly attracts more patrons to public transit. Metro cannot pretend it can cheat inflation. Bus fares have not been raised since 1995, so a fare increase is long overdue. – Numan B. Parada Communications Director The Transit Coalition Tujunga Line games Re: “It could be the end of the lines” (Feb. 5): I am dismayed to know that the MTA aims to undo bus service in the Valley. I sometimes used Line 168 on Paxton Street but did less so after they took away midday and weekend service. Now the MTA plans to cancel the line completely. This shows a strange contempt toward the bus rider. When the budget rings low, official cut only some service on choice lines. Then, the MTA decides to cancel the line because ridership dropped. Go figure. – Tommy Altamirano Sylmar Breaking rent control Re: “Condo complex” (Our Opinions, Feb. 1): California needs to wake up and smell the stench of economic elitism.Not everyone living in or moving to Southern California can afford the reality of the current apartment condo-conversion scheme – reduced affordable housing and sky-rocketing housing costs overall. Land owners have been operating their apartment complexes at a profit for years, otherwise they would have sold the failing businesses and taken to selling used cars. The sole intent of the condo-conversion scheme is breaking rent control. We’ve reached the point when the need of the many outweighs the greed of a few. – Samii Taylor Cypress Too little, too late Re: “Condo complex” (Our Opinions, Feb. 1): Councilwoman Wendy Greuel’s district now has the second-largest numbers of evictions for condos in the city, yet she sits on her hands and shows no leadership in developing a housing policy that saves, not destroys affordable rental housing. Building hundreds of market-rate condos while destroying existing affordable housing and failing to build replacement affordable rental housing in her district certainly isn’t creating the balance in housing she claims to support. While the condo market may be cooling, the evictions from rent-controlled buildings to build condos isn’t. The higher relocation dollars being proposed reflect the real economics of today. But a lurking unaddressed issue affecting the higher relocation benefits is that it may not apply to the hundreds of tenants currently facing evictions. The longer the stall on ordinance enactment, the more projects are excluded from any improved tenant mitigations. – Tom Paterson Valley Village Residents Association Valley Village
John Masi was at the Walter Pyramid Saturday night on the bench of the Long Beach State basketball team, seated quietly next to the man, Larry Reynolds, who once was his assistant, observing the 49ers’ match with Hawaii through eyes that have witnessed so many such encounters across the seasons. Convention forbade him from being assertive, as he remained detached with a practiced coolness, but you can be sure nothing unfolded on the floor that he hadn’t before seen in so many venues in so many cities in so many games. But it would be at UC Riverside where John Masi made his most dramatic impact in basketball, both as a two-year starter and then as a head coaching institution for 26 years (1979-2005) during which he earned numerous honors in guiding his teams to 11 Division II NCAA appearances and a 462-269 record. Reynolds was Masi’s top aide for 16 seasons, and now their roles are reversed after Masi a couple of years ago was fired by the Highlanders’ athletic director, Stan Morrison, in a controversial move that many in the Riverside area still rage about to this day. “That’s in the past, and I really don’t have anything to say about it,” says Masi, who was the NCAA Division II West District Coach of the Year seven times and whose 1988-89 Highlander team went 30-4, upset No. 4 ranked Iowa in the championship game of the Chaminade Christmas Classic and finished third in the NCAA Division II tournament. “Things happen in life and you just have to move on.” John Masi took a year off from his profession, and then became reunited this season with Reynolds, who not only was Masi’s loyal assistant for so long at Riverside but actually played his senior season at the school under Masi when Masi joined Fred Goss’ coaching staff in 1975. He is, as they say in his sport, a lifer, a person who has spent so many of his 59 years in gymnasiums playing, teaching, leading, laughing, agonizing, even for one memorable stretch serving as a foil for the Harlem Globetrotters. “I was playing on a team called the New York Nationals, and I was the guy that vainly tried to guard the Globetrotter dribbling master Pablo Robertson,” he relates. “It was a lot of fun. Did it one season with the Globetrotters’ international team that had Robert (Showboat) Hall as the funny man. We went all over South America, and we played in front of some big crowds in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Columbia, Paraguay and many other countries. And we also went to a lot of places in America, especially in the South.” It’s not exactly a coincidence that Larry Reynolds is having his most successful season with the 49ers with John Masi suddenly gracing the scene. “I feel fortunate to have John with me,” says Reynolds. “It’s like having your mentor next to you. This is a man who helped me grow both as a player and a coach. “And he has a wealth of knowledge. If I’m not sure about something, he’s there to help me. His experience is invaluable. I can’t say enough nice things about John Masi.” John Masi is grateful he is back involved in a sport that has been an integral part of his existence, dating back to when he was an accurate shooting guard at Ramona High and then at Riverside Community College where he played for Bill Mulligan and where he once erupted for 51 points against Citrus College. Indeed, he wanted to coach at the collegiate level so passionately that he took a significant pay cut – from $13,800 to $8,000 – to leave his position as AD and basketball coach at Notre Dame High in Riverside to become an assistant at Riverside. “I love coaching and teaching, and that’s what I’m doing again,” he says. “Obviously, as an assistant, my role is different than before. I don’t say much during games. But if Larry asks me about something, I’ll give him my thoughts.” John Masi is a respected figure in his business, and is one of those people who never found himself to be in the right place at the right time in regard to career advancement. “There were a couple of jobs I tried for, but I just didn’t get hired,” he says. “To be honest, I never tried that hard. I loved it out in Riverside. It was my hometown. “And we had it going good for many years. I have no regrets. I have so many great memories.” He will be returning to his old school on March 3 when the 49ers travel to Riverside. “I’m sure it’ll be a little emotional for me,” he concedes. Masi still maintains a home in Riverside, but has been residing most of this season in a Belmont Shore apartment. “After our Saturday games, I always drive back to be with my wife in Riverside,” says Masi. “Obviously, I still have strong ties to Riverside. But I’m having a great time in Long Beach this season. “I’m back doing what I love – coaching. There’s nothing else I’d rather be doing.” Spoken like a true basketball lifer. Doug Krikorian can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
West Covina Parks and Recreation offers Kung Fu San Su, a highly sophisticated martial arts form designed to improve balance, coordination, flexibility and reaction. Two sessions are scheduled: 6:30-8 p.m., Tuesdays from March 6-27, and Tuesdays and Thursdays from March 6-29 at the Palm View Community Center, 1340 E. Puente Ave. The cost is $41 for the Tuesday class and $56 for the two-day program. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! For information call (626) 919-6966.
Assemblywoman Sharon Runner introduced five anti-crime bills Wednesday and vowed to get them passed – even if it means going directly to voters. The Lancaster Republican expressed hope the proposals would receive bipartisan support, but she said she would use the initiative process if they fail in the Legislature. Runner, along with her husband, Sen. George Runner, R-Lancaster, co-wrote Jessica’s Law – an initiative providing for tougher sentences for sex offenders, which California voters passed overwhelmingly last year. “Absolutely,” Sharon Runner said. “The Legislature has been out of touch with what Californians want for many years, and if (the Legislature) is unwilling to pass it, we’ll go to the initiative process.” “The best way to combat and control the gang situation in California is to address it in a comprehensive way,” Sharon Runner said. “The Legislature must act to punish those who commit criminal acts at the direction of their gang and give law enforcement the ability to gain control of the situation. At this point, not acting is not an option.” email@example.com (661) 267-7802 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Her proposals include allowing law enforcement to aggregate graffiti vandalism crimes for the purpose of criminal prosecution, expanding life-in-prison penalties for crimes involving guns to accomplices, requiring gang members to register annually with local law enforcement agencies, expanding drug laws and creating more restrictive parole laws. “It is time for the Legislature to get its act together and do the job that we were elected to do,” Sharon Runner said in a prepared statement. “Our citizens expect us to protect them, and our response to the growing gang problem until now has been inadequate. “Now, we are at a point where it is nearly out of control, and this package will go a long way in assisting law enforcement in the fight to protect Californians.” George Runner wrote two bills, including one that would require convicted gang members released from prison to wear Global Positioning System tracking devices. He also wrote a gang omnibus bill that would force the 12 bills to be voted on as one package.
Aides to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said the findings confirm the need for the governor’s health care reform proposal. Some changes recommended by the panel – including getting all physicians and pharmacies to electronically transmit prescriptions – are part of the plan. “It’s really an outrage that actions, such as those recommended by the panel, have not already been taken,” said former San Francisco state Sen. Jackie Speier, who sponsored the bill establishing the panel for the California Pharmacists Association. “The recommendations will save the lives of thousands of Californians and should be incorporated into legislation without delay.” Sen. Ellen Corbett, D-San Leandro, is sponsoring a bill that would require pharmacies to issue labels in the patient’s language and regulate the size of printing on pill bottles. The governor also has signed an executive order to complete electronic health data exchanges in the next decade, aides said. “No one should suffer from errors in the improper prescribing, dispensing or use of medication, or suffer from unnecessary health care-acquired infections,” said Kim Belshe, secretary of the Health and Human Services Agency. Medication errors contribute to the illness or death of 150,000 Californians every year and cost more than $17 billion, according to a yearlong study released Wednesday. The state Medication Errors Panel found the risk of medication errors in everything from prescribing, transcribing, dispensing, using and monitoring. And the panel – which held a dozen hearings with doctors, pharmacists, government regulators and others – issued a dozen recommendations for improving medication usage. Recommendations include more informative labeling on prescription bottles, better consumer education, better training for pharmacy workers and bolstered government oversight. firstname.lastname@example.org (916) 447-9302160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
ROWLAND HEIGHTS – Bonita High School’s softball team used timely hitting and pitching, and some mistakes by Rowland, to post a 6-0 victory on Monday in the first round of the Bonita Tournament. The Bearcats jumped out to a quick 1-0 lead in the first inning on what should have been the second out of the inning. After a called third strike, Rowland catcher Tina Quan dropped the ball. The runner at third then scored on a wild throw to first on what was the first of three Raiders errors in the game. “It’s important to get the lead early,” Bonita coach Darren Baumunk said. “We just gotta find a way to get the bat on the ball in clutch situations,” Snyder said. “It’s a lack of concentration at the plate that just comes with inexperience.” Both teams’ pitching was strong throughout the game. Despite getting the loss, Banuelos gave up only two earned runs and struck out seven. Bearcats pitcher Chloe Wurst, making her second start, struck out seven in six innings. In the seventh inning, the Bearcats turned pitching duties over to Brittany Parlopino, who struck out the side to close out the game. “\ pitched well,” Baumunk said. “She pitches to her spots. She’s not overpowering but places the ball well.” “We need to learn from our mistakes,” Snyder said. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! In the fourth inning, the Bearcats again capitalized on another Raiders error. The Bearcats had runners on first and second with nobody out when Raiders pitcher Christina Banuelos induced a ground ball back to the circle. She threw wildly to first, allowing one run to score and putting runners on the corners. The Bearcats tacked on one more run later in the inning. “Errors hurt us a bit,” Raiders coach Craig Snyder said. “This is a young team, they’re still learning.” The Bearcats doubled their lead in the sixth inning on a three-run homer to right field by Myra Maldonado. The Raiders had their chances throughout the game but ended up stranding 13 runners, including the bases loaded three times.
Board member Steve Sturgeon noted that some proposed elements of Golden Valley and West Ranch high schools ultimately had to be sacrificed because of budget constraints. “I believe we need to maximize our available capital funds for future modernization and new construction, and in order to do so we need to make the best use of our money while retaining our education standards,” Sturgeon said. Sturgeon said the board is looking to stick to a more fiscally conservative model. “Different economies cause different issues,” he said. Board member Gloria Mercado-Fortine said she plans to suggest a third alternative: a “design-construction model” that would put control of the design in the hands of the board and the district staff. Juggling a multimillion-dollar budget deficit and a major building program, the Hart school board will debate tonight how to design and pay for construction projects. In the past, the Hart High School District board has authorized architects to design school projects – with all the amenities and additions desired – then developed a budget based on that plan. An alternate view would be to set a budget, then design the school within those constraints. “We have built four schools in seven years and a lot of money has been spent on these improvements, so now we are faced with other needs,” Superintendent Jaime Castellanos said. “We don’t have the cash we used to have.” “Basically, architects have told us how to build and we have not had control,” Mercado said. She cited the $175 million high school, slated for completion in 2010, which includes horticulture and equestrian centers. “We don’t need a lot of those things,” Mercado said. Mercado added that the use of alternative construction methods, such as modular buildings, will also need to be a part of the district’s change in construction practices. Castellanos added that the district, regardless of its construction philosophy, will be forced to delay some construction projects. “We will have to focus on what is most important and put other things on hold.” email@example.com (661) 257-5254
“I don’t like this project because I think they’ve chosen a design that is not suitable for installation along the California coast,” said Susan Jordan, director of the California Coastal Protection Network. “If the government is committed to importing LNG into California, there are other alternatives, technologies, designs and locations that could be more appropriate, that could carry fewer public safety risks and a smaller environmental footprint.” The California Coastal Commission and the California State Lands Commission are scheduled to hold final hearings and votes on the project next week. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has until mid-May to make a final decision. While Schwarzenegger has previously supported more LNG supplies in the state, spokesman Bill Maile said he has not yet taken a position on the Malibu project. BHP and energy industry officials note natural gas is a cleaner-burning source of energy than traditional fossil fuels such as coal. Despite continuing opposition from environmentalists, a $1 billion liquefied natural gas facility proposed off the Malibu coast could win key state approvals as early as next week. Built by Australian energy giant BHP Billiton and anchored about 14 miles offshore, the floating facility would become California’s first such plant. The 214-foot- high terminal would accept liquefied natural gas from tankers, convert it into natural gas and pipe it to a facility in Oxnard. “The facility we’re proposing is absolutely the most environmental facility out there,” said Renee Klimczak, president of BHP’s liquefied natural gas division. “That’s why we’re proposing it for California. It’s been specifically designed to meet all of the standards.” Despite BHP’s assurances, the proposal has drawn adamant objections from activists who fear the facility and the tankers that supply it would pollute the water and endanger marine life. And Klimczak said the facility will produce roughly 800 million cubic feet of natural gas every day – enough to supply at least 10 percent of California’s overall demand. The company has received letters from 18 utilities and natural-gas consumers – including the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power – interested in purchasing the gas, Klimczak said. Klimczak said the company also has already agreed to a number of mitigation measures in response to concerns by environmentalists and state officials. All LNG tankers would use natural gas fuel when in California coastal waters and support vessels such as tug boats will be fitted with catalytic reduction systems. State Controller John Chiang, one of three members of the State Lands Commission, said he has not yet reached a decision on the LNG project, but has questions and concerns. “I’m concerned about emissions mitigation,” Chiang said. “The appearance, at least from the land, doesn’t appear all that great. I’m trying to get a better sense of water travel and water usage and public safety. There are strong disagreements.” Lands Commission staff issued a report raising some concerns about the project, but ultimately recommending its approval. A report from the Coastal Commission’s staff, however, recommended rejection on environmental grounds. Billiton has used its political leverage to push the project, spending nearly $3 million on lobbying. The company and its lobbyists are also closely connected to a number of former members of the Schwarzenegger administration. The governor’s former communications director, Rob Stutzman, now works for a political consulting firm that has worked for the LNG industry. And the governor’s former legislative secretary, Richard Costigan, now works for the firm that lobbies for BHP Billiton. Maile said politics will play no role in the governor’s decision. “As with any major decision, the governor will look at all sides of the issue and make a decision based on the merits and what’s in the best interest of California,” Maile said. But environmental opponents have been joined by officials from Oxnard and Malibu, state lawmakers representing the coast and celebrities including actor Pierce Brosnan and anthropologist Jane Goodall. Los Angeles County Supervisor chairman Zev Yaroslavsky also opposes the project. “I don’t believe it’s appropriate in an environmentally sensitive area,” Yaroslavsky said. “Of all the places I would site an LNG terminal, it wouldn’t be next to a national park. It’s like putting a coal-fired powerplant in Yosemite Valley.” On Capitol Hill, federal lawmakers are starting to question the EPA, which ruled three years ago that the LNG facility must meet the strictest smog regulations. A year later, it reversed that decision. Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Los Angeles, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has sent letters to the agency demanding proof of the further analysis EPA officials said they relied upon when they reversed course. Waxman aides said they have not received any new studies or analysis from the EPA. Aides said they did, however, find contacts between a Bush administration political appointee and BHP Billiton. In a letter to EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson in March, Waxman said he is concerned about possible “intervention” by Jeffrey Holmstead, former assistant administrator of the EPA for air and radiation. Aides said documents show Holmstead met with BHP Billiton in March 2005 and contacted the EPA unit responsible for California shortly after that. An EPA conference call was scheduled for April 27. The agency’s reversal came June 29. Holmstead, who now is a partner with the firm Bracewell & Giuliani, did not return a call seeking comment. Waxman aides said they have asked the EPA to submit to interviews and expect to conduct those in the coming weeks. In the meantime, Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., is pushing legislation to require companies seeking federal approval for liquefied natural gas facilities to identify any employees or business agents trying to persuade the community of LNG’s benefits. And both she and Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, are objecting to the Cabrillo Port project and requesting a long list of documents. Emily Kryder, a spokeswoman for Capps, said the change of leadership in the House and Senate has given opponents of the project some newfound hope that they will have more influence. “With Democratic control, there’s more of an opportunity for us to put pressure on the administration to explain their decisions,” she said. Staff Writer Kerry Cavanaugh contributed to this story. firstname.lastname@example.org (916) 446-6723 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!