Nogales Street railroad underpass half way done

Construction on Nogales Street railroad underpass nears 50 percent done

Construction on Nogales Street railroad underpass nears 50 percent done

With construction nearing the halfway point on the Nogales Street railroad underpass, the Alameda Corridor East Construction Authority awarded a new construction contract this week for another underpass on nearby Fairway Avenue.

But CEO Mark Christoffels was quick to note that Fairway won’t be closed until Nogales Street opens next spring.

“We don’t want to cause any more traffic congestion than we have too,” Christoffels said. “But this way we can start preliminary work on the utilities along Fairway Avenue.”

The head of ACE led a tour of the work on the Nogales Project. The $117 million project began in May of 2013.

“We’ve done 45 percent of the work so far, right on schedule,” said senior project engineer Charles Tsang.

Read more in Rich Irwin’s story NOGALES

Rowland Heights Buckboard Days parade set 9 am Saturday

It’s time for a parade! The community is invited to the 42nd Annual Buckboard Days Parade and Festival this Saturday in Rowland Heights!

The parade kicks off at 9 a.m. at the corner of Nogales and Colima, and will feature a variety of local school bands and student performance groups, community organizations, equestrian groups, floats and the Wells Fargo Stage Coach.

The theme for this year’s parade is “Nature in Our Own Backyard” and the Parade Grand Marshal is local environmental scientist and educator/Rowland Unified School District Parent Kimo Morris, Ph.D.

The parade ends at Rowland Heights County Park where the Family Festival takes place from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., featuring parade awards, entertainment, food and 50 community information and service booths organized by the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation. Visit www.buckboarddaysparade.org for more event information.

Before the parade, enjoy a $5 pancake breakfast by the Hacienda Heights Kiwanis starting at 7 a.m. The breakfast is in the Bell Memorial Church parking lot on Nogales near the corner of Colima (1747 Nogales St, Rowland Heights).

The community comes together to celebrate this annual parade co-organized by the Rowland Heights Chinese Association and the Rowland Heights Community Coordinating Council. Parade Co-Chairs are Rachel Fung, Rowland Heights Chinese Association and John Grant, Rowland Heights Community Coordinating Council.

THANK YOU TO THE BUCKBOARD DAYS PARADE SPONSORS:

Event Sponsors: Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe and First General Bank.Diamond Sponsors: Rose Hills, Rowland Water District, Sabrina Lee, Southlands Christian Schools, STC Foundation, Walnut Valley Water District, Wells Fargo Bank. Gold Sponsors: Aera Energy, LLC, Southern California Edison Co. Silver Sponsors: Association of Rowland Educators (ARE), Henry Woo Architects, Rowland Heights Community Coordinating Council, SK Taekwondo School. Bronze Sponsors: Advanced Martial Arts, Shaolin Temple Cultural Center. Banner Sponsors: Puente Hills Mall and Whittier Hospital Medical Center.

Caltrans closing portions of 60 Freeway for construction

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will close portions of SR-60 from the San Gabriel River Freeway (I-605) to the Orange Freeway (SR-57) separation, as part of a pavement rehabilitation project.  Closures are as follows and subject to change.

Monday, October 13, through Friday, October 17

Eastbound SR-60

  • 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. – Up to three lanes between I-605 & Azusa Avenue
  • 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. – High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane CLOSEDbetween I-605 & Azusa Avenue

Westbound SR-60

  • 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. – Up to three lanes between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue
  • 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. – HOV lane CLOSED between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue

 Friday, October 17, through Saturday, October 18

Eastbound SR-60

  • 10 p.m. to 8 a.m.   – Up to three lanes between I-605 & Azusa Avenue
  • 7 p.m. to 9 a.m.     – Seventh Avenue on-ramp CLOSED
  • 12 a.m. to 8 a.m.   – HOV lane CLOSED between Seventh Avenue & Hacienda Boulevard
  • 11 p.m. to 11 a.m. – Connector from north- and southbound I-605 to eastbound SR-60 CLOSED

Westbound SR-60

  • 12 a.m. to 4 a.m.   – Up to three lanes between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue
  • 10 p.m. to 11 a.m. – Fairway Drive and Old Brea Canyon Road on-ramps CLOSED
  • 12 a.m. to 8 a.m.   – HOV lane CLOSED between southbound SR-57 & Nogales Street
  • 11 p.m. to 10 a.m. – Connector from north- and southbound SR-57 to westbound SR-60 CLOSED
  •  Friday 11:59 p.m. to Saturday 5 a.m.  –FULL FREEWAY CLOSUREbetween southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue

Detours will be posted. New pavement will improve mobility and enhance safety for motorists.  Flatiron West Inc. is the contractor on this $121.5 million project which is expected to complete fall 2014.

Buckboard Days Parade seeks entries in Rowland Heights

Don’t miss the opportunity to appear in this year’s 42nd Annual Buckboard Days Parade and Festival on Saturday, Oct. 18, in Rowland Heights.

The parade is co-organized by the Rowland Heights Chinese Association and the Rowland Heights Community Coordinating Council.

The final deadline to appear in the Buckboard Parade is this Friday, Oct. 10. Applications at  www.buckboarddaysparade.org, email to buckboardparade@hotmail.com.

There is no parade entry fee for community organizations and individuals. There is a $50 fee for commercial or business applications.             

The parade will feature a variety of local school bands and student performance groups, community organizations, equestrian groups, floats and the Wells Fargo Stage Coach. 

The theme for this year’s parade is “Nature in Our Own Backyard” and local environmental scientist and educator/Rowland Unified School District Parent Kimo Morris, Ph.D., is this year’s Parade Grand Marshal.

The parade begins at 9 a.m. at the corner of Nogales and Colima and will conclude at Rowland Heights County Park.

Following the parade will be a Family Festival at Rowland Heights County Park from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. with more than 45 booths offering handmade arts and crafts, food, community information and services organized by the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation.

The Hacienda Heights Kiwanis will be sponsoring a pancake breakfast before the parade, starting at 7 a.m. Come early and enjoy breakfast at the Bell Memorial Church parking lot on Nogales near the corner of Colima (1747 Nogales St, Rowland Heights). Breakfast is $5 per person.

Parade Co-Chairs are Rachel Fung, Rowland Heights Chinese Association and John Grant, Rowland Heights Community Coordinating Council.

It’s Not Too Late to Sign Up! www.buckboarddaysparade.org

Rep. Ed Royce “disgusted” by killing of American journalist

 Today, U.S. Rep. Ed Royce, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, issued this statement following the purported killing of American journalist Steven Sotloff:
 
“I am disgusted by what appears to be another horrendous killing of an American journalist at the hands of ISIS.  My thoughts and prayers are with Steven Sotloff’s family.  Sadly, ISIS is bringing this barbarity across the region – beheading and crucifying those who don’t share their dark ideology.  The threat from this group seems to grow by the day.  Working with key allies, the United States needs to be acting urgently to arm the Kurds on the ground who are fighting them, and targeting ISIS from the air with drone strikes.”

Man convicted of fatal stabbing in Rowland Heights

By Rudy Gonzales, Staff Writer

A jury convicted an Ontario man of the Aug. 17, 2013 fatal stabbing of his girlfriend’s brother in Rowland Heights, officials said Wednesday.

Sarah Ardalani, spokeswoman for the District Attorney’s Office, said jurors on Tuesday found 31-year-old Albert Camacho guilty of voluntary manslaughter and of assault. They acquitted him of four counts of dissuading a witness, she added.

Camacho will be sentenced Oct. 3 at Pomona Superior Court.

Sheriff’s detectives said Camacho and Benjamin Cervantes were arguing on Aug. 17, 2013 at Cervantes’ home in the 1400 block of Gloriosa Avenue in Rowland Heights.

The dispute escalated. Deputies said Camacho stabbed Cervantes several times with a foot-long Asian ornamental knife. Cervantes later died at a hospital.

According to detectives, Camacho allegedly threatened to harm neighbors who witnessed the stabbing if they called authorities. He left the scene. Camacho later turned himself in to the sheriff’s Walnut/Diamond Bar station.

Community library opens today at Nogales High School

The Nogales High School Community Library hours opens today to serve the community with a variety of programs and resources for all ages. The community may park in the school lot, enter through the “H” building pass way, to the library located on the left. (Nogales High School is located at 401 S. Nogales Street, La Puente, CA 91744).

  • Free homework help 3 pm – 5 pm for students grades k-6 (parents must accompany students)
  • Free computer lab (all ages)
  • Check out books (all ages)
  • Story Time / Activity Thursdays 4 pm – 5 pm
  • Quiet places to meet, work or conduct small events

Hours :    Monday-Friday, 3 pm – 7 pm (except school holidays)

For more information, call Louise Garnica (626) 965-3437 ext. 3666

Caltrans posts closures for 60 freeway this week

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will close portions of SR-60 from the San Gabriel River Freeway (I-605) to the Orange Freeway (SR-57) separation, as part of a pavement rehabilitation project.  Closures are as follows and subject to change.

Monday, August 4, through Friday, August 8

Eastbound SR-60

  • 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. – Up to three lanes between I-605 & Azusa Avenue
  • 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. – High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane CLOSEDbetween I-605 & Azusa Avenue

Westbound SR-60

  • 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. – Up to three lanes between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue
  • 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. – HOV lane CLOSED between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue

Friday, August 8, through Sunday, August 10

Eastbound SR-60

  • 10 p.m. to 8 a.m.   – Up to three lanes between I-605 & Azusa Avenue
  • 7 p.m. to 9 a.m.     – Seventh Avenue on-ramp CLOSED
  • 12 a.m. to 8 a.m.   – HOV lane CLOSED between Seventh Avenue & Hacienda Boulevard
  • 11 p.m. to 11 a.m. – Connector from north- and southbound I-605 to eastbound SR-60 CLOSED

Westbound SR-60

  • 12 a.m. to 4 a.m.   – Up to three lanes between southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue
  • 10 p.m. to 11 a.m. – Fairway Drive and Old Brea Canyon Road on-ramps CLOSED
  • 12 a.m. to 8 a.m.   – HOV lane CLOSED between southbound SR-57 & Nogales Street
  • 11 p.m. to 10 a.m. – Connector from north- and southbound SR-57 to westbound SR-60 CLOSED
  •  Friday 11:59 p.m. to Saturday 5 a.m.  –FULL FREEWAY CLOSUREbetween southbound SR-57 & Azusa Avenue

Detours will be posted. New pavement will improve mobility and enhance safety for motorists.  Flatiron West Inc. is the contractor on this $121.5 million project which is expected to complete fall 2014.

Rep. Ed Royce of Rowland Heights convenes hearing on ISIS threat in Iraq

Today, U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, will convene a hearing to examine the terrorist advance in Iraq, led by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), and the U.S. response:.  The hearing, entitled “Terrorist March in Iraq: The U.S. Response” will begin at 10 a.m.

Live webcast of the hearing, as well as witness testimony, will be available HERE.

Below is Chairman Royce’s opening statement as prepared for delivery at the hearing:

This hearing will come to order.  This morning we consider the U.S. response to the terrorist take-over in Iraq.

Nearly six months ago, this Committee held a hearing “Al-Qaeda’s Resurgence in Iraq: A Threat to U.S. Interests.”  Then, the Administration testified that ISIS had begun to shift resources from Syria to Iraq in early 2013, that it had tripled its suicide attacks that year, and that it planned to challenge the Iraqi government for control of western Iraq and Baghdad.  The Administration testified that it had become aware that ISIS had established armed camps, staging areas and training grounds in Iraq’s western desert in the summer of 2013 and that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had again threatened to attack the United States.

The Administration told us that ISIS must be “constantly pressured, and their safe havens destroyed” and that its objective was “to ensure that ISIS can never again gain safe haven in western Iraq.”  However, what the Administration did not say was that the Iraqi government had been urgently requesting drone strikes against ISIS camps since August 2013.  These repeated requests, unfortunately, were turned down.  I added my voice for drone strikes as ISIS convoys raced across the desert.

Since that last hearing, ISIS has done precisely what the Administration predicted it would: it has taken over most of western Iraq, it has turned its sights on Baghdad, and it may be preparing to launch attacks against the U.S.  Never has a terrorist organization itself controlled such a large, resource-rich safe haven as ISIS does today.  Never has a terrorist organization possessed the heavy weaponry, cash and personnel that ISIS does today – which includes thousands of western passport holders.

The Iraqi population is terrorized; they have suffered mass executions and harsh sharia law.  Last week, the remaining members of the ancient Christian community in Mosul fled on foot in face of ISIS demands that they convert or face death.

To be clear, ISIS’s take-over has been aided by Prime Minister Maliki’s malfeasance and incompetence.  Maliki has disastrously failed to reconcile with key Sunni groups.  Many – including myself and Ranking Member Engel –urged him to form a more inclusive government so that ISIS could not exploit legitimate Sunni grievances.  Maliki has only proven himself to be a committed sectarian; certainly no statesman.  It is time for Iraqis to move forward in forming a government that serves the interests of all Iraqis.

What started as a crisis in Syria has become a regional disaster with serious global implications – including credible threats of international terrorism, humanitarian disaster, and upward pressure on energy prices in a fragile global economy.  Meanwhile, terrorist forces and the Iranian government are gaining power at the expense of regional security and friendly governments.

Of course, only Iraqis can control their future.  And the performance on the battle field of certain Iraqi units was abysmal.  Americans have spent enough blood and treasure in Iraq.  And that is exactly why the Administration should have taken the opportunity to inflict decisive damage on ISIS from the air through drone strikes while its fighters were encamped in the desert months ago.

This morning we are joined by a senior State Department official who has been in Baghdad for several weeks and an official from the Department of Defense involved in the current assessment of Iraqi security forces to learn of the path forward in dealing with this national security emergency.

I’ll now turn to the Ranking Member, Mr. Engel, for any opening comments.