Sonoma County News

Sonoma County COVID-19 update

In Sonoma County, 2 more deaths from the coronavirus were reported by Health Officials. Both were over 65 years old, and residents of nursing home facilities, one dying last 8 days ago and the other last Tuesday. According to State records, all County deaths related to nursing home facilities come from 3 locations; one in Sonoma and two in Petaluma. Sonoma County now has 39 confirmed deaths from the virus. Currenty there are 1,455 active cases, with 58 new cases added yesterday. (photo courtesy WBUR)

Missing Cotati Girl

Cotati Police Department is asking for help finding a 15 year old girl who has been missing since Saturday. Eloise Urbanski is 5'6" with black hair, blue eyes, and was last seen wearing a blue denim jacket and black sweatpants. If you have any information, call Cotati Police at 707-762-4611. (photo courtesy Cotati Police Department)

Mental Health Tax Initiative

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors will be voting this week on a tax increase for mental health services. The quarter cent sales tax increase would generate $25 million during the next decade, that would help Behavioral Health facilities, Emergency Psychiatric Services, and Homeless Services. (photo courtesy Where To Talk)

Red Onions Recall

An outbreak of salmonella infecting nearly 400 people in more than 30 states has been linked to red onions, and identified a Bakersfield company as the likely source. The FDA said Thomson International is recalling all varieties of onions that could have come in contact with potentially contaminated red onions because of the risk of cross-contamination. (photo courtesy The New York Times)

State Help For Sonoma County COVID-19

With the number of local COVID 19 cases steadily rising in Sonoma County, Health Officials have asked the State for help. Health Officer Dr. Mase said the State and several skilled nursing facilities have been in contact about how to care for those infected, and reduce the spread of the virus. Starting Monday state infection control teams will assist skilled nursing facilities with advice, and with moving patients to facilities where they can be treated more effectively. Yesterday the County added 93 more active cases to the list, which is now at 1,373 local active COVID 19 cases, plus one more death. (photo courtesy Consumer Reports)

Petaluma Fire Back To Work

Petaluma Firefighters who had been off the job while awaiting coronavirus test results are returning to work today after getting negative results. One of the crew at Station 3 on South McDowell Blvd. had tested positive last week, forcing the department to shut down that station and have the other 14 firefighters tested and remain in self quarantine. (photo courtesy CBS SF)

Suspicious Seeds

Agriculture officials in the Bay Area are issuing warnings about unsolicited shipments of foreign seeds that may be invasive species, and not to plant them. The seeds are arriving unsolicited by mail that appear to have originated in China. Not only are you advised not to plant them, but also don't just throw them away. They might grown in landfills. You can burn them, or grind them up. (photo courtesy News Break)

Goats along 101

Driving on 101 North of Healdsburg you may see work being done to clear brush, but not with the sounds of high pitch motors. Instead, Cal Trans is using 400 goats to eat up the vegetation that could be a fire hazard if left uncleared. The goats have been munching for a week, and will continue with their 4 course dinner until next week. (Photo courtesy The Mercury News)

Case Outbreaks

Sonoma County is seeing a spike in coronavirus case numbers, largely as a direct result of outbreaks at 16 of the county's 20 skilled nursing facilities. Across the state the average number of daily deaths has risen from 91 last week to 109 this week. Sonoma County has been on the state's watch list for two weeks as the number of cases has increased beyond the State's imposed threshold. Currently there are 47 more active cases added in the past 24 hours, raising the total number of active cases to 1,156. (photo courtesy Patch)

PG&E Underground

PG&E will begin work next month to move overhead power lines to underground along Fulton Road in Santa Rosa. The work will take place between Guerneville Rd and Piner Road. Crews will conduct work Monday through Friday, between the hours of 7:00 am to 5:00 pm. Throughout the project, PG&E anticipates lane closures and short traffic delays in the area. (photo courtesy Bloomberg)

Police Officer Embezzlement

A Rohnert Park Police Officer turned himself in to be booked on charges related to embezzlement from his Police Union. After an investigation by the Sonoma County Sheriffs Office, David Sittig-Wattson turned himself in. The officer had been the treasurer of the Rohnert Park Public Safety Officers Association, and is charged with embezzlement over a 4 year period. (photo courtesy Flickr)

Defrauding Students

At the end of 2019, a Sebastopol man was arrested, charged with defrauding student loan borrowers of tens of millions of dollars, beginning in 2014. Yesterday, Brandon Frere was sentenced to 42 months in federal prison, plus and additional 36 months of supervised release. In October, a hearing will determine how much restitution Frere will have to pay his former customers. (photo courtesy Space Coast Daily)

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