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SLO County Roundup

San Luis Obispo

The embattled San Luis Obispo rancher who is appealing his conviction on two guilty verdicts over use of his ranch that serves the homeless was still waiting Tuesday for official word on when he might appear on “Good Morning America.”

Dan De Vaul said that a representative from the popular morning show is moving forward with researching and preparing the segment on De Vaul’s Sunny Acres farm, but official word on the go-ahead from the program’s New York executives hasn’t yet been given.

De Vaul said that if “Good Morning America” decides to air the segment on his dispute with the county over building and safety violations on his property, they’ll film it at the ranch on Los Osos Valley Road.

No talk about any cancellation of the filming on his ranch has occurred in his conversations with “Good Morning America” officials, De Vaul said.

County Supervisor Bruce Gibson told The Tribune that he was contacted by a “Good Morning America” producer to possibly comment on the county’s position on the Sunny Acres situation.

De Vaul said he also is in talks with “Larry King Live” about a possible interview on that show next week. News about De Vaul was announced on the national radio show “Democracy Now” last week.

— Nick Wilson

North County

More than five dozen North County civic and business leaders are in Emmitsburg, Md., this week for training in emergency response at the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Emergency Training Center.

The training is being paid for by a $300,000 grant from FEMA secured by the city of Atascadero.

According to Atascadero Fire Chief Kurt Stone, who prepared the application for the training grant, the object of the instruction is to integrate existing emergency management agencies, test existing emergency response plans and create a foundation for more successful emergency management.

The team will receive a combination of classroom instruction and real-time emergency simulation.

The North County team includes fire department personnel, health care representatives, city staff and two Atascadero council members: Mayor Pro Tem Roberta Fonzi and Councilman Tom O’Malley.

Other members include representatives from the Atascadero Chamber of Commerce, Atascadero Main Street and various other government and business organizations in the North County.

— AnnMarie Cornejo

SLO County

A reception to introduce members of the new county Anti-Defamation League board is slated for today from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Ludwick Community Center at 864 Santa Rosa St. in San Luis Obispo.

The event is free and open to the public. Finger foods and non-alcoholic drinks will be available.

The county Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution on Tuesday recognizing the efforts of the Anti-Defamation League to foster its “No Place for Hate” campaign in the county.

For more information about the event, call Eleanor Lyon at 564-6670.

— Nick Wilson

San Luis Obispo

Matt Kokkonen, running for state assembly in the 33rd District, is expected to speak to students at San Luis Obispo High School on Thursday, presenting the conservative viewpoint to civics class students in a debate with Democrat John Ashbaugh.

Kokkonen also has named a campaign treasurer and set up a Web site, he announced today in a news release.

Accountant Fred Glenn, of Glenn, Burdette, Phillips, and Bryson will serve as Kokkonen’s treasurer.

Kokkonen’s new Web site is www.mattforassembly.com. It is fully integrated with the leading social networking sites, Kokkonen wrote, and includes a blog function.

A San Luis Obispo financial planner, Kokkonen, 63, is running for the seat being vacated by Republican Sam Blakeslee, the Assembly minority leader, who cannot run again because of term limits.

Kokkonen’s opponents in the Republican primary are Paso Robles City Councilman Fred Strong, San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Katcho Achadjian, and former Santa Maria Planning Commissioner Henrietta “Etta” Waterfield.

The winner will face off against the sole Democrat in the race, Santa Maria City Councilwoman Hilda Zacarias.

— Bob Cuddy

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