2010 Year in Review

May 2010 — Amgen fever rolls through Auburn

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May 3 — State Budget woes have forced the Placer County Sheriff’s Department to choose public safety over drug education. The department has canceled the DARE program — drug abuse resistance education — for the current school year, saving about $400,000, Sgt. John Weaver said. May 9 — Jumbotron screens in Downtown and Old Town will capture the Amgen Tour of California as cyclists pedal through Auburn May 16. Eight cameras strategically placed along the route will capture the ride. May 13 — Auburn-based California Highway Patrol officer Ruben Cesar Salgado is under arrest on suspicion of methamphetamine possession weapons possession and driving-under-the-influence. He was booked into North Auburn’s Placer County Jail after being arrested in a Rocklin shopping center parking lot (May 11). May 13 — There continues to be no evidence of foul play in the deaths of five men found in the Wise Forebay Canal since January 2009, according to Auburn Police Capt. John Ruffcorn. “It’s an unusual number — it’s out of the ordinary for so many in such a short period of time,” Ruffcorn said. May 16 — The Placer County Planning Commission OK’ed a plan (May 13) to build an affordable-low-income housing complex in Bowman, despite lingering concerns. The 65-unit Miners Ridge Apartment project was approved for construction on Silver Bend Way, behind the Raley’s Shopping Center. May 17 — The excitement was palpable as several thousand people lined the streets (May 16) to watch the 2010 Amgen Tour of California riders pedal through Auburn, on the first day of the race. As the 124 racers whirled into town, spectators clanged cowbells and let out loud cheers of support. Among the racers were Lance Armstrong and three-time Amgen Tour of California champion Levi Leipheimer. May 18 — Auburn gave the Amgen Tour of California a warm welcome May 16 and wants to roll out the welcome mat again. Bob Richardson, Auburn city manager, said discussions with Amgen officials about future races are positive because of the incredible way Auburn presented itself on race day. May 21 — Frustrated by what they consider an inconclusive probe, some victims of the 49 Fire are looking for answers outside the Cal Fire investigation. A group of them met (May 20) with an Auburn private investigator hired by a law firm looking into the possibility of filing a class-action lawsuit. The wind-whipped Aug. 30 fire burned through 350 acres of tinder-dry grassland, a business district and residential neighborhoods in North Auburn, including 63 homes and two businesses with losses totaling $40 million. May 21 — The American River in the canyon below Auburn will be where the action is May 22 during the inaugural American River Festival. The festival’s goal is to raise awareness about the recreational opportunities at China Bar and push for a long-promised budget over the river. May 23 — With saws in hand, as many as 100 Auburn residents descended on Robie Point (May 22) to clear out overgrowth and create a firesafe fuel break. Project Canyon Safe drew the coordinated efforts of the California Conservation Corps, AmeriCorps, Auburn City Council and fire department as well as volunteers. May 25 — Auburn’s big chill will continue through the end of the week, slowing down vine growth at local wineries but still not jeopardizing the season. Jim Taylor, or rural Auburn’s family-owned Mt. Vernon Winery said the cold snap has put the growing season back or week or two, with harvest likely to occur in mid-to-late October. May 27 — A new group has formed to fight what members believe will be a Wal-Mart on a much-debated North Auburn parcel owned by Roseville developer Jim Conkey. Alliance for the Protection of the Auburn Community Environment, or APACE, has sent out 3,000 mailers in recent days to inform residents about the project. May 31 — Regulators shut down Granite Community Bank May 28, along with three banks in Florida and another in Nevada, bringing the number of U.S. bank failures this year to 78. Tri Counties Bank, based in Chico, is assuming the assets and deposits of Granite Community. The Granite Bay based bank lists $102.9 million in assets.