SOME LOCAL CANDIDATE FILINGS EXTENDED, INCUMBENTS NOT RUNNING

Because incumbents have not filed for reelection, filing deadlines have been extended for some local elected offices. The City of Twentynine Palms announced that as a result of the non-filing of incumbent Council member Jay Corbin, the nomination period for filing papers for the Office of Twentynine Palms City Council member seat was extended to Wednesday, August 13, at 6:00 p.m. As of this morning, incumbent Dawn Rowe has not yet filed for re-election for the Yucca Valley Town Council, extending that deadline if she does not file by today. Both Hi-Desert Medical Center Board incumbents, Diane Swella and Korina Cole have told Z107.7 News they were not running for reelection, extending that deadline. According to the Candidate Filing Guide issued by the San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters, that same extension will apply to Morongo Unified School District (since Donna Munoz is not seeking re-election), and likely to Joshua Basin Water District, unless incumbent Gary Wilson files by the end of today.

HI-DESERT WATER DISTRICT POSTPONES ASSESSMENT DISTRICT BALLOT

An overflow crowd sat through more than 3 ½ hours of discussion on the Yucca Valley sewer project and assessment district vote at a special meeting held last night by the Hi-Desert Water District Board of Directors. Managing editor Tami Roleff says that even after all that discussion, not much was accomplished…
The Hi-Desert Water District Board of Directors—and several Yucca Valley residents—resisted staff’s recommendation that the water district postpone mailing out the ballot for the sewer project’s assessment district vote for 7 or 8 weeks. Staff wanted to wait until the water district had a finalized loan interest rate and assessment amount for residents. Directors and the public stressed they want the ballot out to residents as soon as possible. Dawn Rowe pointed out that the difference in monthly payments between a 0 percent loan and 1.5 percent loan was insignificant. “If we’re talking about $10 a month, and all the public outreach that’s gone out, and all the time and momentum for a fairly insignificant monthly amount, and we’re going to spend tens of thousands of dollars more in outreach to carry this?” Tim Humphreville said the time and money the water district would spend on public outreach wasn’t worth it. “Mrs. Rowe was right; the outreach costs more money. We need to get the assessment district done and the vote passed.” Staff said the ballots hadn’t even been printed yet, so there was no way the water district could mail out ballots next week to meet the original August 14 deadline, and urged directors to wait until September to mail out ballots after the State Water Quality Control Board has assigned an interest rate for the loan. Finally, the directors agreed to continue the meeting and the discussion to August 13 when staff would have more information about how long it would take to have ballots ready to be mailed, and what the state board’s recommendation would be for an interest rate. Earlier in the meeting, during a long discussion about the engineer’s report on the sewer system, directors urged residents to attend the Tuesday meetings at 9 a.m. or 6 p.m. for answers to specific questions about sewer project.

BELLFLOWER MAN HELD IN JOSHUA TREE KIDNAPPING

A Bellflower man is behind bars today, accused of kidnapping his former girlfriend. Sheriff’s press release said Galo Zurita, 35, went to the Valero station in Joshua Tree about 4:30 p.m. Wednesday and hit Kayla Smith, 22, pushing her into his car. Zurita drove off with Smith westbound on Highway 62 for several miles before she managed to escape. Another motorist picked her up and took her to safety. Zurita fled the area. Thursday morning, deputies received a tip that Zurita was in Bellflower. Detectives located Zurita’s car at an apartment complex. Zurita left his apartment about 11:30 a.m., and was taken into custody without incident. Galo Zurita was booked at the West Valley Detention Center for investigation of kidnapping, with bail set at $250,000.

18-YEAR-OLD LANDERS MAN ARRESTED IN RAPE OF 15-YEAR-OLD

A Landers man was arrested Thursday afternoon, accused of raping a 15-year-old girl. Sheriff’s investigators say, the girl’s father reported that his daughter had been raped about three weeks ago, and identified the suspect as Johnny Alaniz, 18. Deputy Shauna Ables contacted Alaniz at his home, and obtained evidence to support the victim’s allegation of rape. Johnny Alaniz was arrested for investigation of rape and unlawful sex with a minor, and was booked at the Morongo Basin Jail with bail set at $250,000.

YUCCA MESA MAN RESCUED AFTER TRAVEL TRAILER FELL ON HIM

A Yucca Mesa man can thank his lucky stars he is still alive today. County Fire Captain Matt Anderson said a man, identified only as being in his 50s, was working with his father on leveling a travel trailer on Wilhart Drive in Yucca Valley about 12:30 a.m. this morning when the travel trailer slipped off its support and fell on him. Anderson said when rescue personnel arrived on the scene at 12:47, only the man’s feet were sticking out from under the travel trailer. The fire fighters used air bags and wooden cribbing to lift the trailer—an inch at a time—about 10 inches up off the man. Anderson said it took rescuers about 15 to 20 minutes to lift the travel trailer off the man, and added that by then, the man had passed out from asphyxiation. Rescuers revived him and he was taken to Yucca Valley airport where he was flown to a local hospital for treatment of his minor injuries. Anderson said the man was “very lucky” and the stars were aligned in his favor.

Fire Station 42 Rescues Yucca Mesa Man From Under Travel Trailer.

Fire Station 42 Rescues Yucca Mesa Man From Under Travel Trailer.

“CHICO” IN YUCCA VALLEY SUMMER CONCERT TOMORROW NIGHT

For the 20th year, Saturday nights in the summer means music in Yucca Valley. Reporter Dan Stork says, come out and listen and dance to Chico…
The Yucca Valley Summer Concert for August 9 features the veteran LA band Chico. Led by founder and bassist Joe Espinosa, Chico has been playing for 35 years, with a range that includes big band music, salsa, cha-cha, merengue, cumbias, Tex Mex, oldies, and rock. The gates open for the free concert at 6:30. The music starts at 7 pm at the ball field behind the Community Center, where it’s always cool, on even the hottest Hi-Desert days. You can bring your own food but NO ALCOHOL, PLEASE—and there will be food vendors, too. You can even bring pets, just so long as you stay with them on the upper ballfield.

TWENTYNINE PALMS YOUTH CLUB REGISTERING FOR AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAM

The Twentynine Palms Youth Club is taking registrations for its after-school program for Twentynine Palms school children. The after school program begins August 25. Applications can be picked up at the Youth Club, 5882 Luckie Avenue, Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. The cost is free for students of Oasis Elementary; for all others, the cost is $100 per month. Oasis students must attend Monday through Friday from 2:45 to 5:45 and be picked up by 6 p.m. Hours for all other students are 2:30 to 6. Students will receive 1 hour of literacy class, 30 minutes of math and physical education, and help with homework. For more information, call the Youth Club at 760-367-5776.

PERSEID METEOR SHOWER MAY NOT BE THE BEST

A favorite annual celestial phenomenon will be a challenge this year. Managing editor Tami Roleff says the Perseid meteor shower may not be at its best…
The Perseid meteor shower is a favorite among sky-watchers, but this year’s meteor shower may not be the best in recent years. While you can probably see meteors starting now, the peak of the Perseids will come between Sunday, August 10, and Wednesday, August 13. But observers may have a hard time seeing them this year due to the bright moon, which will be two days past full. You can improve your chances of seeing meteors by placing a large building or hill between you and the moon, or start looking for meteors in the early morning hours of August 11, 12, and 13.

TAY CENTER OFFERS SERVICES FOR THE YOUNG HOMELESS

Pacific Clinic’s TAY Center offers young adults a safe and comfortable place to define and accomplish their life goals. Clients can come to the TAY Center to meet their basic needs such as a meal, shower, laundry, enrichment groups, job training, housing referrals, and a place to meet new people. Once they become Full Service Partnership (FSP) clients, they can utilize additional services, such as counseling, case management, and medication support services. For more information contact the TAY Center at 760-228-9657 or visit them at 58945 Business Center Drive, Suite D in Yucca Valley.

THEATRE 29 TO ANNOUNCE 2015 SEASON SEPTEMBER 17

Theatre 29, the only continuous year-round live theater venue in the Hi and Low-Desert, will join forces with the three Morongo Basin Chambers of Commerce to unveil its 2015 performance season. Reporter Dan Stork tells how you can be among the first to find out what will be on stage next year…
A special Tri-Chamber mixer event, hosted by the Yucca Valley, Twentynine Palms, and Joshua Tree Chambers of Commerce, will feature the announcement of the 2015 Theatre 29 season of live theater offerings. It will take place at the Joshua Tree Retreat Center in Joshua Tree from 5:00pm until 7:00pm Wednesday, September 17. Each of the chambers will give a brief presentation on their economic development activities and upcoming events and activities. Soft Drinks and Water will be available and a large selection of deli delights will be served to those in attendance by Theatre 29 volunteers. With sell-out audiences a frequent occurrence at Theatre 29, this event will give those in attendance the opportunity to secure 2015 season tickets first. A season ticket assures a seat to all seven of the 2015 regular stage productions. Season tickets are $68 for regular admission, $56 for seniors and military, and $46 for children under 12 and students with ID. At the announcement, each of the seven Directors selected for the Theatre 29 2015 season will give a brief description of their show, complete with musical and dramatic performances. The 2015 season will not be revealed until the event. Starting the day after the announcement, Season Tickets will be available for sale by calling the Box office at 760-361-4151, before scheduled performances at the Theater Box Office or on the Theatre 29 website: www.theatre29.org. For more information on the season announcement event, or Theatre 29, call Board President Brian Tabeling at 760-367-9338.

SERVICES SET FOR PAULA GREENE

Paula Greene, a 37-year resident of Twentynine Palms, died Sunday, August 3. She was 73 years old. Paula Greene is survived by her husband Bud Green, daughters Rene Skinner of Cathedral City, and Stacye Calvert of Twentynine Palms, son Butch Greene of Yucca Valley, and 10 grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren. A viewing will be held at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, August 13, followed by a service at 9 a.m., at Sky View Chapel, 7475 Sunny Vista Road in Joshua Tree, where she was a member for more than 25 years, with Abe Casiano officiating.