Off the Cuff

Carlos Says…

Send in your questions!

In less than four weeks, the community will have the opportunity to see the candidates seeking their vote in person and answering questions posed by the public.

The Herald, with assistance from the local Republican and Democratic parties and volunteers from throughout the community, is hosting a Candidate Forum on Thursday evening, Sept. 18.

Experience with hosting candidate forums in the past indicates that many in the community will wait until right before the event to send in their questions. However, having announced this Candidate Forum weeks ago, there is some concern with the low number of questions received thus far.

The absolute aim of hosting this type of event is to foster an environment where those casting votes for candidates know what the candidates stand for. A considerable amount of energy goes into organizing these events – the number of hours planning, coordinating with volunteers and candidates, and the expense of securing a venue, insurance and cleaning deposits – are all done in an effort to provide voters with information.

So far, the volume of questions has been low.

My question is – is the local electorate interested in knowing the stances of those seeking public office? These folks will wield considerable amounts of power locally. These candidates will be your county commissioners, sheriff, magistrate judge, probate judge and PRC commissioner. Judging from the response to several calls for questions, I’m beginning to think that the local electorate isn’t seeking answers from these candidates. I may be wrong. Perhaps we will receive questions in the coming weeks.

At this point, we are halfway through the timeframe from when this Candidate Forum was first announced and when it will take place. And so far, the response – to be blunt – has been dismal, with fewer than 10 questions received.

So, come on, Sierra County. Drop your questions off at 1204 North Date Street, or e-mail them to herald@torcherald.com or carlos@torcherald.com.


It has been a trying month or so for me with prolonged illness leaving me totally wiped out for the last several weeks. My apologies to anyone who has tried to reach me, and experienced a delay in hearing back from me. If I somehow have missed getting back to you, please email me or call.

Thank you!


During the past two or three weeks, I have received some concerning phone calls and e-mails regarding a handful of our locally elected officials. As you all know, I do not shy away from asking tough questions and taking on the powers that be, one-on-one.

I, along with every single member of The Herald’s Editorial staff, work to get answers for the public. You bring your concerns and questions to us, and we make it our duty to chase down the answers. Elected and public officials work for you. Never forget that. If you can’t get satisfaction in attempting to get answers, bring them to us.

I should have some answers for you by next week’s edition.

Some of you have been waiting a while, and your continued patience(?) is appreciated. As a reminder, while you may have one concern regarding the happenings within this community, please keep in mind, we have many stokes in the fire.

For our community’s sake, I hope the things I’ve been hearing do not pan out to be true, but if they do, I’m sure it will be some officials who hope that we didn’t live in the Information Age.


I feel absolutely honored to have had the opportunity to sit down with Roger Long Jr., a couple of weeks ago and talk to him about the challenges he and his family were braving in the face of cancer.

Sadly, early Monday morning, I learned that Roger had passed away.

All of us at The Herald extend our heartfelt and sincere condolences to Roger’s wonderful family – a family that is an extension of our own.

Our thoughts and prayers are with each and every one of you.


On Tuesday evening, I witnessed an amazing aspect of this community. Moments after hearing Dispatch operators broadcasting information regarding a pair of missing children, I posted the information to our Facebook page, and continued to monitor the response from law enforcement in locating these two children.

What surprised me was the sheer volume of local residents messaging our page, texting and calling me, and physically going out to look for these children.

Thankfully, the children were located a little more than a half-hour later, at a neighbor’s home, safe and playing in a back yard.

I am humbled by the response from this wonderful, caring community – 5,629 people saw the Facebook status updates posted to our page because so many of you shared the information on your personal pages. THIS is social media at its BEST.

So thank you, all of you, for solidifying my faith in humanity. It just goes to show how powerful a community can be when we ALL come together.


It’s always nice when a competing newspaper recognizes a great photo. Last week, we were surprised to see one of Herald Publisher Mike Tooley’s photos gracing the very top of the Sierra County Sentinel. It’s not the first time one of our photos has appeared on the front page of the other paper, and it’s not the first time photo credit has been missing from one of our photos in their paper.

It’s all right. Mike’s photo originally appeared on the front page of The Herald when we first ran the story about an emergency response drill in FEBRUARY. It appears again on Page 16 of this week’s edition.



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