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Around The Valley – News Briefs

So Far – Tulare County Is State Wet Spot

rain  map 2015-12-28 at 7.04.30 AMPrecipitation in parts of Tulare County are more than 200% of average for the date since the water year began October 1. This NOAA map shows that most of the county is at least 130% of average. This hopeful sign comes as California weather systems are expected to  pattern a more traditional El Nino storm track into the state coming in from the west and south after the New Year. This map is as of December 27th.

OLAM Shuts Union Frozen Food Plant

OLAM West Coast announced the closure their Modesto frozen food plant as of this month laying off 173 employees. The Singapore company said demand for frozen vegetables was down. The food company said the would retain 69 workers at their Modesto parsley dehydration plant. At the same time OLAM also gave notice it would increase production at their Firebaugh facility with a new parsley line and a new vegetable dehydrator. The implication may be they will move remaining operations to Firebaugh.
One factor may be that the Modesto plant is represented by the Teamsters Union and in Firebaugh, employees there rejected union representation earlier in the year.

New Mediterranean Restaurant Coming On Main Street

Visalia will get a new Mediterranean restaurant when Flame and Skewers opens at 104 E Main, the site of the former Rio Grill. Tenant improvements at the site are underway with a spring opening likely. The property is owed by developer Danny Freitas.

Screen Shot 2015-12-28 at 2.57.21 PMTulare Outlet Clothier Will Shut Down

Formerly Ecko Unlimited and now called Slam Xyte,will be closing their  mens clothing store at 1535 Retheford at the Tulare Outlet in April according the a state WARN notice The store employs 29 according to the notice. The same company plans to close a half dozen other  locations in the state including one in Fresno. The store caters to teens and features hoodie shirts and sportswear

COS May Sell Mooney Lot

College of Sequoias has noticed they may sell off their vacant parking lot at Mooney and Myrtle in Visalia. The closed door agenda item was noticed at their December 14 meeting. COS may no longer need the lot across Mooney for parking and could sell it for commercial development.

Solar Company Installing Panels On Three County Dairies

Coldwell Solar is installing three $1.3 million solar systems at local dairies according to recent permits. Dykstra Dairy,Five Star Dairy and Vander Eyk Dairy are all going solar in the new year. Coldwell Solar says until very recently, solar was not a viable option for customers with multiple pumps and meters. However, some newly introduced California legislation allows farmers and growers to utilize aggregate metering. This ensures that electrical consumption from pumps or meters on contiguous properties may be combined. Coldwell Solar  says they can install one efficient turnkey solar energy system that spans multiple properties.

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