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Pilot Killed in Boulder City Plane Crash Identified

BOULDER CITY, Nev. -- The man who crashed a small plane just south of the Boulder City airport has been identified.

The Clark County coroner says 45-year-old Brett Dean Beuckens of Queens Creek, Arizona was killed in the Friday evening crash.

Officials say the plane was flying to Henderson from the Deer Valley Airport in Phoenix.

Beuckens was over Lake Mead in the Beechcraft BE35 Bonanza when he radioed in saying he was running out of fuel.

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.

Plane Crashes at Boulder City Airport

BOULDER CITY, Nev. -- Crews are investigating a plane crash at the Boulder City Airport. Sources say the plane from Phoenix ran out of fuel over Lake Mead and clipped a power line.

A spokesperson says at about 4:30 p.m., the pilot tried to land at Boulder City Airport but crashed just east of the runway. Emergency crews responded and the pilot was pronounced dead on the scene.

The pilot was the lone occupant of the Beechcraft BE35 Bonanza. Witnesses on the scene say he missed the runway by about 200 yards.

"I was at baseball practice, and I saw ambulances and sirens," said Joseph Miller, a Boulder City resident. "I'm just happy he did not hit any homes. It could have been tragic," said Robby Jackson, a Boulder City resident.

The plane was en route from Deer Valley Airport in Phoenix to Henderson.

Hundreds of Teachers Face Uncertain Job Future

LAS VEGAS -- Unless the Clark County School District can find other ways to cut about $125 million from its budget, more than 500 local teachers could get pink slips in May.

The Clark County Education Association which represents teachers says it's in negotiations with the school district to try to save as many teaching jobs as possible.

While schools brace for the worst-case scenario, the union is telling its members not to panic and not to believe every thing they hear.

"I've always said that a teacher's working conditions are a student's learning conditions so when you have teachers who, on top of everything else they have to deal with, testing, mandates, lesson plans, are now worried about whether they're gonna have a job or not, it's just another added pressure," said Ruben Murillo, Clark County Education Association.

I-Team: State Grabs Clean Water Money to Shore Up Budget

LAS VEGAS -- Millions of dollars has been taken from a state fund supposed to help clean up the water in Lake Mead. The money will now be used to help the state budget shortfall.

The loss of $62 million has critics upset and threatening a possible lawsuit.

It's a little-publicized way of helping Nevada stay afloat -- take money from local governments and agencies to fix the state's problems. It's a no-win scenario for everyone, but lawmakers are backed into a corner.

Read the bill that moves the money

Poached programs don't like it, but it's a sacrifice that keeps Nevada in the black.

With the chemicals and waste flowing from homes into the drinking supply, the Nevada Clean Water Coalition wants to build a pipe to dilute that water in Lake Mead. Not anymore.

Hundreds Line Up For Free Tax Assistance

LAS VEGAS -- The Earned Income Tax Credit or EITC event Saturday, which took place at the Heinrich YMCA on Meadows Lane right across from the Meadows Mall, had lines wrapping around the building as people waited for free help in filing their taxes.

By mid afternoon there were already 200 families who were served. The focus of the event, which was co-hosted by Channel 8, was making sure taxpayers were aware of the changes made to the earned income tax credit.

What is it comes down to is if you earned $49,000 or less in 2009, you can receive free tax preparation and may be eligible for an EITC refund of up to $5,657. The EITC works to help low-income, working taxpayers get more money back when they file their federal income tax forms but most people are unaware of this tax credit.

State Warns of Census Scams

LAS VEGAS -- State officials are warning Nevadans to be on the look out for scams involving the 2010 Census.

Secretary of State Ross Miller and Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto issued a consumer advisory Wednesday morning.

They say the scams include official looking requests for personal financial information and they may come in the form of a direct mail, email or even someone visiting your home.

"Nevadans must know that the U.S. Census Bureau is seeking only demographic information and would not ask for personal information like social security, bank account of credit card numbers," Masto said.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the census forms will be mailed out to people starting in early March. Workers will begin knocking on the doors of single family households around May 1, 2010 if they didn't get the form mailed back to them.

 

Lake Levels Rise Several Feet

LAKE MEAD, Nev. -- The recent storms in the west are having a positive effect on Lake Mead. A 10 year drought has dropped lake levels dramatically, but the Bureau of Reclamation says thanks to the rain, the lake is rising.

Lake levels are up four feet, which is good news for lake lovers like Jan and Jon Kennard. They travel hundreds of miles to coast the shoreline of Lake Mead.

"How could you not enjoy the lake? The terrain, the water, just gorgeous," said Jan Kennard.

But for years, the lake has been shrinking. Nearly a decade of drought has taken its toll. But this year, experts say the lake has made a comeback, rising some four feet.

Bob Walsh with the Bureau of Reclamation says that's about 400,000 acre feet of water.

"You can figure one acre foot of water will cover a football field to a dept of one foot. So, we're talking about quite a bit of water obviously," he said.