Water issues set stage for 2017

Water begins to fill up in Lahontan Reservoir in January because of the runoff from Sierra storms.

Water begins to fill up in Lahontan Reservoir in January because of the runoff from Sierra storms.

The Lahontan Valley News takes a look back at 2017. Today the LVN looks at the highlights from January-April.


The Churchill County Commission has submitted both residents’ and its concerns to address a planned expansion of the Fallon Range Training Complex as part of the scoping process.

While western Nevada and the Sierra Nevada mountain range weathered several days of heavy rain and flooding, the Lahontan Valley dodged a bullet with isolated reports of flooding in the Silver Springs-Fernley area and Churchill County. The days of torrential rains in Silver Springs worried residents who live near the Carson River. Combined with the melting snowpack in the Sierra, the river swelled over its banks to send water toward homes southeast of 9th Street.

Since December Lahontan Valley ranchers and farmers have been euphoric because of the increasing snowpack in the Sierra Nevada mountain range that will eventually fill Lahontan Reservoir.

Fallon Mayor Ken Tedford was honored as Elected Official of the Year at the recently held members meeting of the Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS) in Salt Lake City.

After 9 inches of snow fell on the Comstock, the Nevada Army National Guard responded with four 10-ton dump trucks with winches from the 609th Combat Engineer Co., in Fallon.

For the second time in his law enforcement career, Mike Matheson retired. He had been serving as a captain with the Churchill County Sheriff’s Office.


More than 100 people stopped by Churchill County’s open house featuring local artists and giving county leaders and the community a chance to interact socially.

Banner Health announces the addition of two new providers to its facilities in western Nevada. Dr. Victor Lee Kim will join the family medicine team at Banner Health Clinic in Fallon and Dr. Poonam Pamini Jani will provide internal medicine care at Banner Health Center in Fernley.

Churchill County High School’s Jump Start has about a dozen students on track to receive their associate degree a few days prior to their high school diploma. Oasis Academy College Preparatory High School is operating its Jump Start program through Western Nevada College a little differently than the remainder of the college’s 13 other cohorts. As a result, more students are benefiting from the chance to earn up to an associate degree before graduating from high school.

Churchill County 4-H hosted a banquet to recognize and thank the men and women in those dangerous positions. Members of nine emergency departments, their families and the families of those in the 4-H program filled the Fallon Convention Center. Fallon police, the sheriff, Care Flight, fire and rescue, Naval Air Station Fallon and Banner Churchill Community Hospital EMTs were among the departments represented.

The Truckee-Carson Irrigation District began releasing water out of the reservoir and into the Carson River based on runoff forecasts and to mitigate flooding along the low-lying areas. Another concern is the reservoir could reach capacity earlier than expected.

The 51st annual Fallon All Breeds Bull Sale held at the Fallon Livestock Exchange featured bulls ranging from 14-25 months of age. Cattlemen from California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Utah attended the sale looking to buy their range-ready bulls for the year.

The Fallon Police Department has been reaccredited as one of the top law enforcement agencies in the United States according to the standards prescribed by the Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA).

A 40-year drought ended for the Fallon Lady Wave girls’ basketball team. The Lady Wave knocked off Lowry, 54-38, at UNLV’s Cox Pavilion to win the school’s first Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association basketball championship. Prior to the NIAA, Fallon won 10 titles between 1921-1931.


Churchill County and the city of Fallon declared a state of emergency so local agencies will be able to maximize resources available from the state.

Krysten Waalk, a Reed High School (Sparks) and 2015 University of Nevada, Reno graduate, died in a three-vehicle crash west of Fallon on the Reno Highway. Waalk spent half her time counseling for SP and the other half for Atlas in Reno, which also has offices in Fernley and other western Nevada communities.

The American Indian Movement reached Fallon to help educate the community about substance abuse and domestic violence.

Community “celebrities” are paired with high-school dance students from the Fallon Swing Dance Club in the annual Dancing with the Stars on Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Churchill County High School Gym.

U.S. Highway 95 south of Fallon reopened for traffic after being closed for almost a week for flood mitigation improvements. During that time, the Nevada Department of Transportation primarily routed motorists through Yerington, one of several detours, during the closure.

The second highway closure will allow for the installation of additional drainage culverts on U.S Highway 50 east of Fallon to mitigate any damage from potential spring flooding.

A transient from Washington state who moved to Fallon in March appeared in the New River Township Justice Court for arraignment on charges of open murder and battery with a deadly weapon resulting from an incident at the Overland Hotel.

Gov. Brian Sandoval visited Churchill County on a fact-finding trip to learn more about flood mitigation efforts in the Lahontan Valley. Local officials briefed the governor on the work being done to lessen the flood danger from water dispersed from Lahontan Reservoir west of Fallon.

TCID, county road crews and several out-of-state construction firms began to construct an emergency weir and spillway on the V-line canal, which delivers water to the other canals.


Churchill County is the 11th healthiest of Nevada’s 17 counties, according to a recent Health Factors rating that compares a collection of health factors. The overall ranking is based on two types of measures: how long people live and how healthy people feel.

U.S. Highway 50 east of Fallon opened on schedule after construction crews wrapped up work on a culvert installed for possible flood mitigation. NDOT and Granite Construction spent one week installing additional drainage culverts on a stretch of highway between Wildes Road and Macari Lane about nine miles southeast of Fallon.

The east side dam at Sheckler Reservoir was compromised by water undermining a portion of it about 1/8 mile north of the southern gate that releases water into the Navy Range, Bravo 16.

Experts from the National Guard to Conservation and Natural Resources and Emergency Management say there’s so much snow in the mountains around western Nevada if we get more storms and a warm spring, flooding is inevitable

This year about 100 people walked from Oats Park to Fox Peak and once at their destination, people of all ages planted pinwheels to signify the importance of preventing child abuse. Each year the walk is conducted before the tribe’s annual Earth Day celebration.

Orlis Trone, 77, died as a result of heart failure in Reno. In January, Trone suffered a massive heart attack but was currently undergoing rehabilitation. Trone, who began writing columns for the Lahontan Valley News in 2010 and penned many articles supporting the Constitution and the American way of life, was known as the “Humble Pamphleteer.”

The Senate Education Committee last week recommended passage of a bill expanding and protecting the rights of K-12 and university student journalists to free speech.


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