WELL RUNS DRY; SUPERVISORS TAKE ACTION — Supervisors took action Tuesday to allow a struggling water company to hook up to a county well after its well ran dry. One of two primary wells in the Deer Park Water system in North Fork is essentially dry. Just recently the well showed only one gallon per minute being pumped and was shut down. Prior to that, residents were urged to boil their water after the health department found high bacterial levels in the water. The county is pursuing a $27,500 grant for an engineering study of the problem.
TRUSTEES TO DEBATE WHERE TO PUT NEW JUNIOR HIGH — Madera Unified trustees have set Aug. 8 as the date they will hold a public hearing on the location of the new junior high school. District officials have already chosen one possible site on the south end of Alpha School, but the school board is having second thoughts. Trustee B.J. Robinson has emphasized the need for a junior high school in the southeast region of Madera. “The southeast part of Madera is underrepresented,” said Robinson. Trustee Benny Barsotti questioned having three schools so close to each other. In addition to Alpha, plans are being made to build a second high school in the same area.
COUNCIL ABANDONS HOMELESS PLAN — James Way residents have won their battle against shelters for the homeless, which had been slated for their street and caused fears the fabric of the neighborhood would be destroyed. The Madera City Council voted unanimously to withdraw its support of the James Way Project, which would have created the first facilities in Madera County for homeless people. The action came after residents of the area protested. “Our main concern is the value of our property,” said Denise Marmolejo. “Who is going to buy a home next to a homeless shelter?”
MANURE FIRE BLANKETS CITY WITH SMOKE — A discarded cigarette started a 15-acre grass fire that found its way to hundreds of tons of manure near Noble’s meat packing plant. Calling it the “poo” fire, Battalion Chief Jeff Row said burning manure would pose quite an environmental threat. “You can pour thousands of gallons of water on manure, and it will keep burning,” Row said. “Smoke stemming from the fire billowed for hours, although containment was achieved within 40 minutes,” said Madera City Fire Chief Larry Sunia. A bulldozer was brought in to disperse the manure to facilitate putting out the blaze...