Noon Hour Update: What's happening and what we're working on

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Welcome to the Auburn Journal's "Noon Hour Update," where we'll present you with stories and updates on what's going on in the news and what we're working on for our Thursday edition.

It's wet and cold outside: Some foothill-area residents woke up to a snowy morning today. In Foresthill it's a "snow day" as all three schools have shut down due to snow accumulation at around the 3,000-foot level. Reporter Gus Thomson wrote that at least four inches of snow had fallen at Alta as blizzard-like conditions hunkered down in the Sierra.

Chain controls: As of 11:42 a.m. Cal Trans has these chain controls in effect throughout the Sierra, they are as follows:

Interstate 80: (Eastbound) - Chains required from Alta to Truckee with tractor-trailer truck screening at Applegate. (Westbound) - Chains required from Truckee to Alta with tractor-trailer truck screening at Overland trail.

Highway 49: (Northbound/Southbound) - Split controls: Frog Hollow (Camptonville) to Sierra/Plumas Country Line chains or snow-tread tires required. Chains or snow-tread tires are required from Frog Hollow to North Yuba River Bridge, Goodyears Bar to Sattley and Sierraville to Sierra/Plumas County line.

US 50: (Westbound/Eastbound) - Split Controls at 3,000-foot level to Meyers, chains required and 3,000-foot level to Riverton chains are required and Fred's Place to Meyers chains are required.

These controls are subject to change. For more chain control updates visit the Cal Trans website here.

We want your winter weather photos: If you have weather-related photos from today's storm, send them to us at

What we're working on: Reporter Gus Thomson is out in the wet and cold reporting on the impact of the weather rolling through the foothills area and Placer County.

Reporter Sara Seyydin is working on a piece about layoffs of teachers in the Placer Union High School district, and covering the costs associated with the use of consultants for the City of Auburn.

Our sports department will be making the trip to Lodi today for the girls basketball playoffs. Bear River and Colfax look to extend their seasons.

What you're talking about: In our Opinion section the letters "‘In God we Trust' a sign of city waste" and "Make English official language" are getting responses from our readers, and they are the most so far today. Our story "Fishing derby scheduled to continue despite concerns of some" has prompted comment as well. Read these letters and story and weigh in with your opinion.