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Top Ten Stories of 2013

<p align="center"><i>During the 12 months of 2013, Sonoma Valley saw numerous changes. The county’s board of supervisors decided to fund the long awaited Highway 12 project, there were two large and destructive structure fires, the controversy over patient care and potential closure at SDC is still perking, Sonoma residents were at odds as to whether or not hotels with 25 or more rooms should be built and the Sonoma Valley Community Health Center found a home. The Index-Tribune was there all year, capturing and recording the major issues facing the Valley and its residents. Here are the top 10 most significant stories of the year as decided by the I-T editorial staff.</i></p>

<p align="center"><i> </i></p>

<b>1. Supervisors fund Highway 12 project</b>

After Phase II of the Highway 12 project was shelved when the county’s Redevelopment Agency was dissolved in February 2012, the county struggled to find a way to fund the project that had taken decades for planning and approval, and that includes sidewalks, streetlights, left-hand turn lanes and gutters and curbs from Boyes Boulevard to Agua Caliente Road. Phase I, from Encinas Lane to Boyes Boulevard was completed three years ago.

The county even filed suit against the state, in a case that it won in August. But the state is expected to file an appeal against the judgment, so in May the county’s board of supervisors decided to use some of the money it was receiving from the state that formerly went to the Redevelopment Agency, to finish the Highway 12 project. With about $2.2 million in bond money and an additional $5.3 million or so in new money, the county will finish the project. It is expected that the county will call for bids sometime in the first part of 2014, start construction by mid-year and be complete by mid-2015.

 


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