Property owners asked the Judicial Council to coordinate the pre-trial handling of their cases.  In response, the Chief Justice recently asked Calaveras County Presiding Judge to handle the matter. The Calaveras County presiding judge, the Honorable Grant Barrett, will consider the request and make a recommendation to the Chief Justice on the most appropriate site for the Butte Fire coordinated proceeding. Will he keep it in Calaveras or send it to another County?  

 

On November 25, PG&E announced further tree cutting work.  From November 28-December 12, PG&E will send ACRT, Inc.to pre-inspect and repatrol these areas.

Mokelumne Hill:

Jesus Maria Rd
Ponderosa Way
Worden Rd
Hwy 26

Mountain Ranch:
Whiskey Slide

East Murray Creek

Avenue A
Mountain Ranch Rd
Railroad Flat Rd

Sheep Ranch:

Railroad Flat Rd

PG&E’s tree cutting schedule from November 28- December 12 will include these areas.

Mokelumne Hill:

Jesus Maria Rd
Baker Riley Rd
Old Gambetta Rd
Doster Rd
East Murray Creek
Old Greek Mine Rd
Buttondown Lane
Rainbow Rd
Upper Dorray Rd.
Lower Dorray Rd
Electra Rd
Flat Gulch Rd
Lower Gulch Rd
Diamond Lane
Old Gambetta Trl
Ponderosa Wy
Hwy 26
Sierra Oaks Lane

Mountain Ranch:

RailRoad Flat Rd
El Dorado Trl
Sierra Vista Way
West murray Creek
East Murray Cree
Whiskey Slide
Green Ranch Rd
Pine Ridge Rd
Struckman Rd
Emigrant Ct
Avenue A
3 Mile Ln
Rodesino Rd
Carabaldi St
Washington St
Old Emigrant Trail W
Hwy 26
Cedar Way
Spring Lake Rd
Cilenti Ranch Rd
Loma Serena Rd
Swiss Ranch Rd
Worden Rd
Francine Ct
44 Ranch Rd
Ponderosa Wy
Storey Rd
Wendell Rd
Hidden Valley Rd
Sheep Ranch Rd

Sheep Ranch:

Eagleview Dr
Cave City Rd
Sun Rd
Ham Luddy Rd
Skyview Ct
Lakeside Dr
Sugar Pine Rd
Eagleview Dr
Live Oak Lane
Oakridge Rd
Calaveras Rd 

Railroad Flat Rd
Hidden Valley Rd
Sheep Ranch Rd

PG&E has released a schedule for re-Inspection of Butte Fire properties and for further tree removal.  Unfortunately the timeline for the work is so broad as to be useless as a planning tool for residents.  

Butte fire

At seemingly arbitrary times and at the whim of the contractors over the next 10 days, PG&E may show up on victims’ properties per the schedule below:

 

 

PG&E will be re-inspecting trees in the following areas:

   
Jesus Maria Rd Mokelumne Hill
Ponderosa Way Mokelumne Hill
Upper Dorray Rd Mountain Ranch
Worden Rd Mokelumne Hill
Hwy 26 Mokelumne Hill
Electra Rd Mokelumne Hill
Whiskey Slide Mountain Ranch
East Murray Creek Mountain Ranch
Doster Rd Mountain Ranch
Green Ranch Rd Mountain Ranch
Railroad Flat Rd Mountain Ranch/ Sheep Ranch
Fricot City Rd Sheep Ranch
Hidden Valley Rd Mountain Ranch/ Sheep Ranch
Old Gulch Rd Mountain Ranch

 

PG&E will be removing trees in the following areas: 

 

Jesus Maria Rd Mokelumne Hill
Baker Riley Rd Mokelumne Hill
Old Gambetta Rd Mokelumne Hill
Creations Way Mokelumne Hill
Potteroff Rd Mokelumne Hill
Doster Rd Mokelumne Hill
East Murray Creek Mokelumne Hill
Old Greek Mine Rd Mokelumne Hill
Shine Way Mokelumne Hill
Buttondown Lane Mokelumne Hill
Rainbow Rd Mokelumne Hill
West murray Creek Mountain Ranch
East Murray Creek Mountain Ranch
 Whiskey Slide Mountain Ranch
Green Ranch Rd Mountain Ranch
Old Emigrant Trail W Mountain Ranch
Hwy 26 Mountain Ranch
Fricot City Rd Sheep Ranch
Hidden Valley Rd Sheep Ranch/ Mountain Ranch
Rich Gulch Rd Mountain Ranch
Railroad Flat rd Mountain Ranch/ Sheep Ranch
Cedar Way Mountain Ranch
Eagleview Dr Moutain Ranch
Jesus Maria Rd Mokelumne Hill
Lower Dorray Rd Mokelumne Hill
Electra Rd Mokelumne Hill
Railroad Flat Mountain Ranch
Sheep Ranch Rd Sheep Ranch/ Mountain Ranch
Sun Rd Sheep Ranch
Ham Luddy Rd Sheep Ranch
Skyview Ct Sheep Ranch
Jesus Maria Rd Mokelumne Hill
Old Gambetta Trl Mokelumne Hill
Worden Rd Mountain Ranch
Ponderosa Wy Mokelumne Hill
Hwy 26 Mokelumne Hill
Francine Ct Mountain Ranch
44 Ranch Rd Mountain Ranch
Ponderosa Wy Mountain Ranch
Whiskey Slide Rd Mountain Ranch
 Ponderosa Way Mountain Ranch
Storey Rd Mountain Ranch
Green Hills Rd Mountain Ranch
   

 

 

In response to landowner complaints, PG&E has agreed to remove all woody debris that is "reasonably accessible" and is:

greater than 4 inches in diameter and 6 feet or greater in length; and

within 100 feet of a structure or foundation or within 20 feet of main roads, driveways and private roads; or

·     on a steep banks with a potential target of waterways or roadways. 

PG&E will not compensate the landowners for the timber it removes and it may take up to three months to do the work.

And what is "reasonably accessible"? What does PG&E plan to do with all of the timber?  

While many landowners may agree this is a waste of time, or too little too late; some may want to take advantage of the program.  If so, the participation deadline: December 31, 2015.

Many women who suffered arterial events such as strokes or heart attacks have been waiting since 2009 for Bayer to come to the negotiating table. The women claim that Bayer’s oral contraceptives Yaz, Yasmin and Beyaz caused their injuries. Bayer has now agreed to set aside $56.9 million to compensate these women. It’s up to each individual woman to decide whether to participate in the program that Bayer is offering.

Since 2011 Bayer has paid $2 billion to settle claims of women who suffered venous events such as pulmonary embolisms and deep vein thrombosis. But under the deal now on the table, the approximately 1200 injured women with arterial – related injuries would share $46.9 million, with another $10 million available for those women and families who can demonstrate that their injuries were particularly severe or that a family member died from the arterial event. The settlement program amounts to an average of $50,000 per woman.

The Court has ordered the lawyers for all potential claimants to submit certain forms on behalf of their clients before Friday August 7th at 11:59 EST. The women whose lawyers submit the forms will then have until September 12th to decide if they want to Opt-In to the program.

Not only does a traumatic brain injury (TBI)  forever change the life of the victim, it also causes serious damage to the health and lives of the victim’s family. The TBI victim is not the same person which causes profound stress to the care giving family. The stress is constant and there is usually no hope for improvement.

The TBI victim has extensive cognitive, emotional and behavioral problems. These problems result in a grim life for the family caregiver. Studies show:

  • A divorce rate of 84% for TBI couples
  • All or most of the family savings gets consumed
  • Compromised immune system for up to three years after caregiving ends
  • An increased risk of developing a chronic illness.
  • Major depression diagnoses for nearly 50% of caregivers.
  • Premature aging, taking as much as 10 years off a caregivers’ life.

When a wrongdoer has caused a TBI, the caregiver victim should also be compensated. While these are the results of scientific studies, how does a caregiver demonstrate her injury to a jury? Some steps to document the impact:

  • Start a diary of events. While the family members may feel disloyal about recording negative behaviors, the diary is necessary to help others understand the depth and breadth of the loss.
  • Seek respite services to relieve the stress of caregiving.
  • Seek emotional support through participating in support groups or counselling with a psychotherapist.

Despite risks of blood clots, stroke and death, in October 2015 California will be the first state to allow women to purchase birth control pills without a prescription. The pharmacist need only  complete a one hour training, conduct a health screening of the woman and take her blood pressure.  And, there is no age restriction.

Oregon has a similar law that will take effect in January 2016.  While Oregonians are still working on the regulations, they will likely require more training for the pharmacists and will only sell to minors who have a prior prescription from a doctor.   

Although women’s rights advocates applaud the improved access to oral contraceptives, some are concerned about the serious health risks posed by the drugs and fear the lack of  health care provider screening will increase unnecessary risks. 

Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is a progressive degenerative disease which afflicts the brain of people who have suffered repeated concussions and traumatic brain injuries, such as athletes who take part in contact sports, members of the military and others.

The brain of an individual who suffers from CTE gradually deteriorates and will over time end up losing mass. Certain areas of the brain will atrophy, and other areas are prone to becoming enlarged. Another aspect of CTE is that some areas of the brain experience an accumulation of tau protein, a substance which serves to stabilize the structure of brain cells (neurons). With CTE, neurons become defective and subsequently may cause major interference with the brain’s ability to send messages.

Some of the most common symptoms include loss of memory, difficulty controlling impulsive or erratic behavior, impaired judgment, and behavioral disturbances including aggression and depression, difficulty with balance, and a gradual onset of dementia. An individual with CTE may mistakenly relate the symptoms to the normal process of aging, or might be misdiagnosed to the fact that many of the symptoms are similar to other conditions such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease.

Takeda, the manufacturer of Actos, has agreed to pay $nearly $2.4 billion to settle bladder cancer claims brought by users: 

  1. who  took Actos at some time prior to December 1, 2011,
  2. who were diagnosed with bladder cancer on or before April 28, 2015, and
  3. who retained counsel before May 1, 2015. Under the terms of the settlement, approximately $2.4 billion will be distributed to approximately 10,600 Actos qualifying users, for average award of $225,000. 

The exact amount of any individual settlement award will be determined through an agreed-upon points matrix by which a number of points will be assigned to each individual claimant based on the level of injury.  The point total will then be adjusted up or down based on various factors, such as length of Actos use, smoking history, and prior history of bladder cancer. 

The five levels of injury include 1) a single occurrence of low grade bladder cancer; 2) recurrence of bladder cancer or occurrence of high grade or T1 bladder cancer; 3) occurrence of T2 bladder cancer or treatment for any bladder cancer by radiation or oral or intravenous chemotherapy; 4) occurrence of T3 bladder cancer or partial or radical cystectomy or nephrectomy to treat bladder cancer; and 5) occurrence of T4 bladder cancer or death from bladder cancer. 

If you meet the criteria above, you should be receiving more information from your attorney.  Please note that Individuals who wish to participate in the settlement must opt-in to the resolution program by July 13, 2015, and then submit a claim package (by a date to be determined) including documentation substantiating the injury and factors accounted for in the points matrix.  A Claims Administrator will then determine points each participant, and calculate the dollar value of each point to determine individual settlement awards. 

Recently a California jury awarded 249 exotic dancers $6.5 million for unpaid wages.  The jury found that their employer, Paradise Showgirls, violated the Labor Code that prohibits a Club from taking a portion of the dancers’ tips or requiring a divestment of payments for services. The exotic dancers are employees, not independent contractors, and thus need not contribute any portion of what they earn to defray the Club’s overhead.