As 2013 draws to a close, KHTS is looking back at some of the top news stories and important events of the last year.
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On Monday and Tuesday the news team looked at those stories that had garnered most attention from our readers.
There were a number of other events in the Santa Clarita Valley that did not make it into the top 30 news stories but still had a significant impact on the community.
KHTS-sponsored Poor Man’s Poison beat 50,000 other country music acts by advancing through the local, state and regional levels before winning the $100,000 grand prize at the national level.
Harper won the Western Regional Final in November and will compete at the national final in January.
In January, SCV residents also received the announcement the Councilmember Frank Ferry would not run for reelection to the Santa Clarita City Council.
Ferry has served on the council since 1998–16 years–and he said that he wanted to celebrate the things accomplished during that time and go out on top.
But Ferry’s last year on the dias has also been marred by repeated outbursts and heated arguments with fellow Councilmember TimBen Boydston during council meetings.
On a lighter note, the SCV has seen improvements to the community over the last year and is expecting several planned for the future.
In May, the William S. Union Hart High School District began construction on the highly anticipated Castaic High School, which is scheduled to open in August 2016.
The project to build 87 homes near Centre Pointe Parkway had been months in the making. Habitat first received approval from the City Council in April.
These homes will answer local affordable housing needs for low-income veterans. Habitat will also provide what they call “Enrichment” Services to their families before and after move in to teach these important life skills. Services in the program include connecting families with other organizations, social services and nonprofits who provide: financial literacy workshops, health education and screenings, homework help for the children, computer training, PTSD counseling, and veteran-specific services.
Thanks to a concerted effort between law enforcement, schools and families, drug deaths have also gone down this year.
Deputies with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station’s J-Team released figures in November that showed drug-overdose deaths decreased dramatically in 2013, compared to last year’s figures.
There were five drug-related overdoses in 2010; seven in 2011; 16 in 2012, and four, to date, in 2013.
This month, the city of Santa Clarita asked residents to weigh in on a possible beautification project coming in 2014.
City staff are currently considering a proposal from Metro that would remove 118 billboards in the SCV in exchange for three digital billboards along Interstate 5 and State Route 14.
The city would earn a portion of the ad revenue from the digital billboards, as much as $450,000 a year.
Those who are interested in commenting on the proposal can submit their thoughts to the city at Billboard.Santa-Clarita.com or attend the public hearings in 2014.
The SCV also faced a change that could cost money rather than save it. The Santa Clarita Valley Sanitation District had to decide on a plan to reduce chloride in the Santa Clara River watershed by Oct. 31, a move required by the Regional Water Quality Control Board.
The Sanitation District opted for a deep-well injection costing $130 million to reduce chloride, a plan expected to gradually increase the fees for district ratepayers.
This is just a small part of everything that happened in the Santa Clarita Valley during the last 12 months. Browse KHTS AM-1220’s Santa Clarita News Archives for other 2013 stories.
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Source: Santa Clarita News