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Tuolumne County's water outlook worse than thought

Water levels at Pinecrest Reservoir are lower than normal because of California’s four-year drought. Jesse Jones / Union Democrat, Copyroght 2015.
 Tuolumne Utilities District, reluctant this year to impose the early and stiff water-conservation measures implemented last year, learned this week that the county’s water situation is more dire than expected.

District General Manager Tom Scesa at a Wednesday evening TUD board meeting said he learned this week from Pacific Gas and Electric Co. that Pinecrest Reservoir — TUD’s second-largest source of drinking and farm water — is not supposed to fill this year, as earlier forecast.

Sierra Views: Veteran volunteer Mario Salas

Sonora resident Mario Salas is a Vietnam veteran Vietnam. His girlfriend, Mimi Bareilles (right), had his Mini Cooper painted red, green and yellow to resemble the Vietnam Service Medal ribbon and match his trike. Jesse Jones / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
Longtime Sonora resident Mario Salas has spent much of the past 25 years volunteering at nearly every veteran event in Tuolumne County.

Salas, 68, who served one tour in the Army during the Vietnam War, said he is proud of his service and supports veterans and soldiers.



Feds start 4B gallon fish water release

Boat ramps don’t reach water at New Melones Reservoir’s Tuttletown Recreation Area. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation will release more than 4 billion gallons of water from New Melones Reservoir into the Stanislaus River over the next couple of weeks for “pulse flows” intended to push salmon smolts out to sea.

Bureau spokeswoman Erin Curtis said the releases will reduce the amount of water stored in New Melones by about 15,000 acre-feet. For perspective, the amount of water that will be released could serve roughly 40,000 Tuolumne County residents for an entire year.

Woman dies in Mokelumne Hill car accident

A San Andreas woman died in a Wednesday afternoon accident in Mokelumne Hill. 

Connie Sullivan, 53, was pronounced dead about 3:15 p.m. at the scene of the collision, according to a California Highway Patrol report. 

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