Monday, October 17th, 2011  1300hrs


NOTE: Verbatim transcriptions were based on analog and digital recordings of the meeting and prepared by Lew Richardson. 

YUP I agree wholeheartedly, that “blow by blow” verbatim transcription stuff is not only time consuming but at times quite difficult to read with the constant interruptions.  Often boring too. 

SPK1: “I did not!”

SPK2: “Yes you did!”

SPK1: “Did not!”

SPK2: “Did so”

SPK1:  “Not”

SPK2”  “Did”

SPK1”  “No”

SPK2”  “Yes”……….



You know, it really doesn’t matter how I present meeting information anyway because the SO GOSIP [Same Old Group Of Special Interest People] simply do not want YOU, the rate paying customer, to see, hear or read what happens at our LDPCSD meetings.  [Video sure would be interesting.] 


Manufacture spurious accusations and arguments in hopes of obstructing, distracting, and concealing facts and the truth.  

Complain that I am an evil wrongdoer for presenting on this website PUBLIC INFORMATION along with MY PERSONAL OPINION about matters affecting our public agency. 

Do not question evidence of intentional obstructionism to CSD progress or jeopardizing its future existence with patently illogical and childish behavior. 

Do not challenge highly suspicious activities and fabrications of the truth by Public Officials, but rather, only complain that I should be denied my rights in expressing legitimate personal concerns about such activities. 

Why?  Because their modus operandi (method of operation) in support of special interest activity is so FRACKING OBVIOUS!

Unfortunately our last CSD meeting qualifies for prominent position on the list of “peculiar business meetings”.  Think you sense a bit of frustration, maybe some anger?   YOU BET YOUR SWEET ASSETS LITTLE COW POKE!   

Why not grab a snack and/or beverage, get comfortable, read the following transcript regarding item 3. B:  Filling Board Vacancy, and judge for yourself?  Does it make sense to deny appointment to the only  applicant (highly qualified as well) for a single vacancy?   


Meeting opens at 1300hrs, Present: Vice President Bill Kinsella, Directors Emery Ross, Mark Skoien, and Lew Richardson; Board Secretary/Financial Administrator Charise Reeves, and LDPCSD Attorney Raymond Carlson.  (Interim General Manager Dan Tynan was absent due to a major pipe leak.)

Pledge of Allegiance.   



Jesse Figueroa commented he was aware of the fact the Ranchito Well testing had not been completed which directly related to his later agenda item so he agreed to have it rescheduled for the November regular meeting.  [Incidentally the Board Packet was 155 pages.]

FILLING BOARD VACANCY (Begin transcript)

Vice President Bill Kinsella:  We have ah, the next item is filling the board vacancy.  As you’re aware Vicki resigned, we have had one letter of interest and that was from Victor Afanasiev and nobody else has expressed an interest so I would like to suggest to the board that we vote up or down on Mr. Afanasiev.  Board comments?

Director Emery Ross:  I’ll wait do you have one Mark or anything? 

VP Kinsella:  What?

Director Ross:  I said, did Mark have one or not? 

Director Mark Skoien:  Nope.

Director Ross:  What about Public Comment?  You gonna have public comment about it?

VP Kinsella:  Well, I want to find out what the board wants to do first and then we’ll kick it open to the public.

Director Ross:  Ah OK, well, making me first I guess, well is there anybody else up here that’s going to comment because I’d rather wait

VP Kinsella:  Lew?

Director Lew Richardson:  Maybe I want to wait too (laughing)

Director Ross:  maybe you will (inaudible)

VP Kinsella:  Somebody do something (laughing)

Director Ross:  OK well I guess I can say something, ahum, you know I’ve had a lot of calls about this (inaudible-mumbling) this, this vacancy, and ah, you know, I,  I’ve known Victor for a long time How long have I known you Victor? 

Victor Afanasiev:  Oh I don’t know

Director Ross: (Laughing)  I mean Carly’s probably ten years old, the cow we got as a calf, so, at least that long if not longer, and you know, the way I look at it there’s two Victors.  There’s a Victor that says, you know, excuse me ah counselor I disagree, you know, and a Victor that says the ah, the telephone records were, were illegal and when the DA and Raymond says they weren’t and staff gave it to him and then there’s this other guy, this guy that ah, on a Christmas Day, probably 10 years ago maybe not that long, ah we we found some kids that didn’t have, weren’t going to have a Christmas and ah you and your wife put together food and wrapped presents and did all kinds of things you know, and Christmas Day I take those down there.  The Victor that, that that ah does these baskets over here every Christmas.  And so I I’m,  I’m somewhat torn between the two Victors because I know you’re a very compassionate caring person.   I have a problem when you openly criticize Raymond, you know, ah and I think it’s OK in Closed Session, you know to criticize that critic, you know, real bad, but you know you can make comments and that’s, that’s what I’m, you know, torn on that, and of course I’ve had a lot of calls please, please, please give us ah, you know more time to decide, and, I don’t know if that’s fair or not, ah we could go until Friday but you’re the only candidate and ah, so I got to make up my mind today and that’s about all I can say for now.

VP Kinsella:  Lew?

Director Richardson:  I, I don’t know really, understand anyone else’s personal conflict with the applicant, we have one vacancy we have one applicant who’s more than, apparently reading from his resume, qualified.   I don’t see where there’s an issue and as far as disagreeing with counsel, well you know, people disagree all the time

VP Kinsella:  Me too. (laughing)

Attorney Ray Carlson:  I understand (laughing)

Director Richardson: You know, and, but still we have a duty to listen to counsel.  I don’t think there’s anything done inappropriate there, we have people disagree with things all the time here and actually that’s even encouraged to flush out what the situation is so I don’t really understand what that preamble was

(Inaudible back ground female voice in audience)

VP Kinsella:  Mark?  Oh, are you done?

Director Richardson:  Yeah, yeah.

VP Kinsella:  Mark, no comment?

Director Ross: Well, you know, what the preamble was because you wouldn’t speak first so I had to speak first

Director Richardson:  You started speaking first

Director Ross:  No, you didn’t want to, ah, there’s people that that said that they would like to have some more time, you know, I don’t know if that’s appropriate or not that’s up to this board and for Raymond to decide if it’s legal or not, we could go until this Friday but I don’t know if that would make any difference because we really haven’t got anybody, but, other than that find out from public maybe there’s somebody out there who’s gonna,  wants to that was late I don’t know, that wants to apply for it.

(Multiple voices)

Director Mark Skoien: (inaudible) the next meeting?

VP Kinsella:  Say again?

Director Skoien:  Can we go to the, until the next meeting?

VP Kinsella:  No

Director Ross:  No time

VP Kinsella:  No, we’ve, we’ve posted

Director Ross:  hold it to the next one yeah

VP Kinsella:  You want to finish?

Director Ross:  Yeah, I was going to say the meeting on Friday (inaudible) we’re having a meeting Friday right?

VP Kinsella: Yeah but that’s not that’s not going to do anything    

Director Ross:  Ah, OK

VP Kinsella:  The notice was adequately posted throughout the subdivision, ah, there was a meeting held by other people and a candidate was supposed to come forth from that group the candidate never submitted any information never expressed a request for us.  I don’t believe that Victor should win by default I think that Victor should be voted on the board.  Just that simple.  So unless somebody has a, has a question I’m going to ask for a motion from the board to install Victor as the next director. 

Director Richardson:  I’ll make the motion

VP Kinsella: Do I have a second? (No response)  I will second.  (Door opens and closes)  Just in time 

Public:  Shouldn’t you wait until (inaudible) record all this stuff?

VP Kinsella:  Say again?

Public:  Shouldn’t you wait until Charise gets back so you’ve got someone to record all this?

VP Kinsella:  I can’t hear you

Director Richardson:  He’s asking about the recording.  The recording is going

VP Kinsella:  Yeah, so?

Public:  Oh OK, it’s on.

Director Richardson:  Yeah, it’s working for now.

IGM Dan Tynan:  If it’s OK I was going to see if ah  

VP Kinsella: No, we just, we’re not to you yet.

IGM Dan Tynan:  (Laughs) OK, we’ll I just want to let everybody know there’s a very bad leak on Arbolada and Justin is the only one out there right now

VP Kinsella:  Charise filled me in on that, any comments from the ah floor?  Sir?   

Wes Barton:  Victor is nuts,  (Laughter), but he wants the job and I tell you, I’ve been up here 8 years and there’s not a better person than Victor.  Like everybody’s referred to him I mean he’s out there helping people whether there’s a fire, or it’s kids, or if it’s the Lions or if it’s whatever.  He and I disagree all the time but I’m always right and he’s always wrong (audience laughter) but he’s still a damn good guy and I, I would highly recommend him.

VP Kinsella:  Any other comments from the floor?  OK, back to the board, I’m going to call for the vote.  All in favor of Victor?    Aye

Director Richardson:  Aye

(No other response)

Director Richardson:  So we now go to the Board of Supervisors

VP Kinsella:  Right

Director Richardson: and here’s another embarrassment and another (clears throat) 

VP Kinsella:  Oh boy

Director Ross:  You haven’t finished saying no or abstain

VP Kinsella:  Well, all those against vote no….all those in opposition

(Director Skoien indicates NO)

VP Kinsella:  And you, you abstained?

Director Ross:  Yeah

VP Kinsella:  Well, why?

Director Ross:  Because I can’t decide between the two people

Director Richardson: Oh my Lord

Director Ross:  Which one are we talking about,  the one that got recalled from the owners or this (inaudible-multiple voices)

VP Kinsella:  I don’t

Director Richardson:  Oh boy

VP Kinsella:  I don’t think I want to go there any farther

Director Ross:  You asked

VP Kinsella: OK, that’s fine, then tomorrow morning I will get my little pudgy body down to the Board of Supervisors in Mariposa County with 13 copies and have the Board of Supervisors ah

(Back ground voice asking if we were out of copies [packet])

Director Ross:  You can

VP Kinsella:  make the appointment and

Director Ross: You can also re-advertise

VP Kinsella:  What?

Director Ross:  You can also advertise for other opening

VP Kinsella:  We only have two weeks Emery

Director Ross:  I know but (inaudible)

VP Kinsella:  I’m not, I’m not going to do that I want to fill the vacancy as quickly as possible.  Now you want to be an obstructionist that’s perfectly well within your right.

Director Ross:  Don’t say I’ve been an obstructionist

VP Kinsella:  I think you are

Director Mark Skoien:  He has a right to vote the way he wants just move on do what the next process is.

VP Kinsella:  That’s exactly what I’m going to do, he knows where it’s going

Director Ross:  Well Victor will probably apply there and get it there

VP Kinsella:  OK, well that’s fine

Victor Afanasiev:  I do not have to apply, the board’s (inaudible)

VP Kinsella:  Victor, as far, as far as I am concerned you’re a qualified candidate and ah, you are, you just didn’t get off the Banana Boat

Victor Afanasiev:  Well that’s fine.

VP Kinsella:  So

Board Secretary Charise Reeves:  Mark, what was your vote?

VP Kinsella:  Say again?

Secretary Reeves:   Mark?  No? No

VP Kinsella:   Mark voted no and Emery

Director Ross:  Abstained

VP Kinsella:  the usual.  OK

Secretary Reeves:  I’ll listen, I’ll listen to the tape to get the motion and everything

VP Kinsella:  Say again?

Secretary Reeves:  I’ll listen to the tape and catch up

VP Kinsella:  OK.  OK so much for that. 

Director Richardson:  What an embarrassment.

VP Kinsella:  We ah, we, the next item is Closed Session

Director Ross:  That’s an embarrassment

VP Kinsella:  What?

Director Ross: That’s an embarrassment, putting that early on a topic it should be at the end. 

VP Kinsella:  What?

Director Ross:  That should have been at the end all these people came now they’ve got to go for two hours in a Closed Session

VP Kinsella:  Hey listen

Unknown voice:  Stop it

Director Richardson:  Just let it go

VP Kinsella:  I’m not ah, I’m not

Director Richardson:  Just let it go

VP Kinsella:  I’m not going to get into that again

Public:  Bill can I ask a question?

VP Kinsella:  Yes sir.

Public: OK, when you, when you go before the supervisors to ask them to appoint somebody, is Victor’s the only name going to be on the list or what?

VP Kinsella:  That’s it

Director Ross:  That’s it

Public:  OK so

VP Kinsella:  I also have to ah, contact Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors, I don’t know the process for them, I, I do know that Mariposa County requires 13 copies, I think the same thing would be applicable in Tuolumne County.

Public:  Probably

VP Kinsella:  But since we only have one candidate

Public:  Is it too late

VP Kinsella:  who is, who is, who is qualified nobody else expressed an interest and do you think I blame them?  (Laughter)  No I don’t.

Public:  He asked a question Bill

VP Kinsella:  Yeah

Public:  He asked a question

Public: Yeah, will there be, can other people put their name in before you talk to the board?

VP Kinsella:  No it’s already been closed

Public:  Oh OK, so Victor is going to be the next board member (inaudible)

VP Kinsella:  I don’t know whether Victor is going to be the next board member.  The Board of Supervisors, the Board of Supervisors can also appoint somebody.  Victor is the candidate that applied here, the Board of Supervisors wants to put in Mickey Mouse they’ll appoint him.

Public:  OK, so it’s open then?

VP Kinsella:  It’s, as far as the Board of Supervisors is concerned, is open.

Public:  I just wanted to clarify that.  You may have 15 people this week put in their names (laughing)

VP Kinsella:  Well, there was, it was adequately posted, it was amply posted, people knew about it, ah, Vicki’s resignation was not a surprise to anybody, everybody in there knew befo, knew before I did that she was going to resign.  So I’m not going to get into that either.  The next item is the Closed Session.

Interim Manager Dan Tynan:  Bill?

VP Kinsella:  Yes

IGM Tynan:  I want to see if I can be excused so I can help on this leak, it’s tearing up the road

VP Kinsella:  Say again?

IGM Tynan:  I want to see if I can be excused to get on this leak ‘cuz I’ve got a young guy out there and it’s tearing up the road, it’s a very, very bad leak.

VP Kinsella:  OK

Secretary Reeves: So we’re going Closed Session at 1:18?

VP Kinsella:  Once, yeah 1:18.  Raymond?  We’re going  …. [End Transcript- Board goes into Closed Session]




WHOA!  Talk about complimenting someone for their many years of honest and dedicated community service while simultaneously throwing them under another Porter Political Bus!  Ross is unsure about Victor because he (Victor) questioned the attorney?  Don’t buy that hogwash for a nanosecond, besides, what’s wrong with questioning opinions due to legitimate concern?  The true reason lies in another one of Ross’s traditional mumbling comments: 

“…the one [Victor] that got recalled from the owners…”.





Please “recall” that the submitted cartoon juxaposed two well known community facts regarding activities of Thomas Porter and his Deerwood Corporation:


1) A donated a sign with wording suggesting the entire high school had been donated by Tom and Peggy Porter; and

2) A very large golf course water bill was outstanding with multiple refusals to pay.

The Lake Don Pedro Owners’ Association Board of Directors at that time seriously considered possible ramifications of publishing the cartoon but decided the artist’s First Amendment Right to Free Speech was the paramount issue especially after the many years of censorship to Deerwood’s favor by another local publication.  Consider this, had a member submitted a Letter to the Editor expressing those same concerns it would have been published without question, so why should a simple satirical cartoon receive different treatment? 

The cartoon was published in the former “NEW DISCOVERER” and after only four days that unpaid Deerwood Corporation water bill, which had been gradually reduced from $80,000, to $60,000, to $40,000 and finally $20,000, with only a mere $5,000 offered settlement by Thomas Porter, was paid off to the tune of $20,407.08 on May 4th, 2009.  Of course that is when Porter’s Cartoon Recall started complete with free lunches at the golf course for those who attended petition signings.  Heck even a community volunteer Deputy Sheriff was used to collect signatures despite being unaware of the real reason for the recall.  

The directors that didn’t immediately cave to threats of recall and demands for an apology to Thomas Porter to this day still believe their actions were correct but naturally that didn’t stop the Porter Political Machine from recalling those directors.  Recalled for standing up for the Right to Free Speech and dissemination of truthful information?  I am proud to have been a member of a board that courageously stood up against the self-serving negative influence of a multi-million dollar land development/mortgage corporation that had been allowed to do whatever it wanted within this subdivision.  

I find it amusing that those who constantly bring that recall up evidently believe it is something of which to be ashamed or embarrassed when in actuality, it is the SO GOSIP who should be ashamed and embarrassed for supporting such domination, control, and suppression of the truth.   They were the traitors to this community and its rural foothill environment.  Golly Gee Professor…..what did that uncontrolled Deerwood development actually do for this area?  Corruption of governing boards, numerous short-sales that negatively affect existing homes, a huge inventory of vacant deteriorating homes, and dangerous developer convenience roads that do not conform to State mandated Fire Safe roadway standards to name only a few.  [Wonder if this relates to the new FIRE FEE for homes in SRA – State Responsibility Areas?]  

Anyway, back to the GOOD VICTOR-BAD VICTOR bedtime story for idiots.       


Emery Ross apparently has some serious comprehension issues in recognizing and appreciating a single individual’s existence. (You’ll understand more about this comment when considering the POE METER REMOVAL MATTER where Mr. Ross represented to the Board and public that one individual was two separate people owning different parcels when in actuality she was a former real estate agent (evidently known by three different last names) and who ultimately received a cease and desist order from the State Department of Real Estate for conducting activities without the proper license.   Mr. Ross’s May 3rd, 2011 email to other directors is also intriguing reading since it was an alleged “Investigative” report of fact containing clearly incorrect information.)


Why would Ross abstain from a yes appointment vote?

Emery Ross:  “Because I can’t decide between the two people”

What is this nonsense, some kind of Lake Don Pedro Dr. Jeckle and Mr. Hyde analogy of Mr. Afanasiev’s more than adequate qualifications (but more importantly his integrity) to be appointed to the LDPCSD Board of Directors?  This is absolutely absurd!  Good Heavens, even when attempting to diminish Afanasiev’s qualifications for appointment (without success) when Ross mentioned the association recall he himself suggested the possible origin of the strings that manipulate his “mumbling cowboy” persona.

(When I first met Emery I felt as though I was talking with one of the actors on the movie set of “Lonesome Dove”, you know, a down to Earth no-nonsense cowboy perspective, but that manufactured illusion quickly disappeared in light of his continuing special interest activities.)

Here is the “application” submitted by Mr. Victor Afanasiev on October 3, 2011 for the Board position:


 My name is Victor Afanasiev and I am requesting an appointment to fill a vacancy on the Board of Directors of the LDPCSD.

I retired as a supervisor of the Centrifuge Department of Beckman Instruments in Palo Alto, California, after working for 28 years with the same company.  After moving to Lake Don Pedro, I became involved in various community organizations:  LDPOA, LDPCSD and the Lions Club.  I attended the majority of the meetings of both LDPOA and LDPCSD.  I was a member of the citizens’ committee that was involved in the formation of UC Merced and took an active role in the committee.  I was appointed by the School Board of Big Oak Flat Groveland to the oversight committee for Measure M and a $7 million bond to build gyms in Tioga and Don Pedro High Schools.  I had to resign from the committee when I was appointed to the 2009-2010 Tuolumne County Grand Jury where I was elected to be one of the three committee chairs.

During my time in Palo Alto, I attended an evening law school and continue to this day to be interested in law cases.  Presently I am involved with AWRA (American Water Resources Association), Cal Fed (the State Water Resources Board), DWR (Department of Water Resources) and Water Education Foundation.

I respectfully request to be considered for an appointment to the board of LDPCSD and I believe I will be a good addition to the board.  Thank you.  (Signed) Victor Afanasiev. 


I have heard some people consider such activity by Ross to be entertaining, however, when it concerns the reputation, and perhaps even the survival of this CSD, I am not the least bit amused.  Granted, if it were another community I would likely shake my head in disbelief, laugh at the ridiculous antics and be thankful I didn’t live there.  But there’s the rub, Lake Don Pedro is my home.  I live here and such activity is counterproductive and must stop.


The previous Mariposa County Grand Jury suggested Emery Ross resign as president of the board and is a BIG CLUE to the origin of many CSD difficulties.  That 3rd resignation by Ross may have slowed some of the nonsense down but it continues and is specifically intended to keep this organization in a dysfunctional holding pattern while another Thomas Porter/Deerwood Corporation Recall quietly proceeds in the background to pack this board with “Porter Supporters”.  The fact Emery Ross was directly involved with the formation of this recall movement is ANOTHER BIG CLUE to what is going on.   Naturally Mr. Ross could not effectuate such obstructionism by himself and a quick glance at some of the more confusing decisions reveals the co-operation of Director Mark Skoien.  The fact that both Ross and Skoien refused to investigate alleged misconduct of a former director (ultimately removed due to action by the District Attorney on information furnished by the Grand Jury) is yet ANOTHER BIG CLUE.  And now, the POE METER REMOVAL MATTER I believe will clearly document the collusion by sitting directors to obscure the truth in that case. 

I have studied massive amounts of material, worked very hard at understanding water related issues and some of the specific difficulties within this district but it all means absolutely nothing when intentional obstructionism by these two directors is allowed to flourish unchallenged.   I am tired of being called names in open session by these individuals and will no longer tolerate such childish, ignorant and counterproductive behavior.  I am sick of the untruthful information spread by Emery Ross, such as his statements that I was going to run for a Mariposa County Supervisor position which manufactured a political environment for Ross to solicit the “Porter Supporter” votes to counter his  fabricated interest on my part.  I’ve had it with the two-faced ignorant and uninformed comments by Skoien such as, I was a poor investigator when employed in law enforcement 20 years ago, yet when I leave the board room during a break, Skoien advocates that I would be a great investigator for Kalvin Giles “snipe hunt” investigation of boxes and boxes of phone records and his unfounded accusations that office staff was misusing telephones.   I can honestly say I have been in more organized and honest Boy Scout troops.      

“Mumbles the cowboy” needs to either speak up clearly at meetings (his mumbling interrupting comments are common place at meetings) and stand by a position or shut the hell up and allow others to perform the serious work he dismisses as unimportant.   The same applies to his sidekick, good friend, and neighbor Mark Skoien. 

Apparently, Emery’s quest for election to the SDRMA Board in Sacramento has failed (the Peter Principle….advancing to the next position of incompetency?) so he should have more than adequate time to focus on what he was elected to do here, but of course there is still his continuing interest in obtaining a County Supervisor’s seat which should be of great concern to EVERY SINGLE RESIDENT OF MARIPOSA COUNTY because the dysfunction that thrives at the LDPCSD will only be transplanted there!     


This is so frustrating.   Remember how this board started in January?  Emery Ross, without any legal authority, confiscated and destroyed my personal notes in some sort of demonstration of his supreme authority?  Then we had the infamous boycott by Ross and Keefe of an educational class designed to make CSD directors and employees better prepared to serve this community.  Ross even challenged a Brown Act training course as being a Brown Act violation!  Recall how Ross, Keefe and their handful of followers walked out on meetings where I presented short educational videos of CSD operations?   Seriously, does that make any sense to you? 

Ross stated the videos were in violation of the Brown Act [WRONG!] and a violation of a Federal Bio-Terrorism Act [WRONG!], but what sort of confused thinking would cause two directors to walk out of a meeting in protest?   If I truly believed for a second that a director was going to violate the law you could not pry me out of my board seat because I would be watching them like a Hawk!  But Ross and Keefe ducked into the parking lot and again demonstrated their true commitment to this district.  What about the $30,000+ “rebated” to a handful of chronic “Porter Supporter” complainers immediately after we avoided bankruptcy with the Proposition 218 rate increase?  Does that make any sense? 


Perhaps I too am one of Emery’s “multiple people” who cannot be appreciated as an individual with personal opinions regarding topics of local public concern?  The “Compassionate-empathetic Lew” encourages acceptance, tolerance and understanding of such “board performances”, yet the “Oath Sworn Public Official Lew” does not have that luxury, but rather, a clear fiduciary duty to honestly represent this district and its customers to the best of his ability. 


OH NO!  This situation gave birth to the “Conflicted Lew” who, like Emery, was required to choose between different perspectives of the same person.  Who to follow?  The “Compassionate-empathetic Lew” who  would attempt to ignore such habitual obstructionism and attribute it to something other than stupidity and/or corruption; or the “Oath Sworn Public Official Lew” who will continue to honor his Oath and serve this district honestly despite being witness to 10 months of absolute foolishness and needless wastes of time, energy, and district resources?

Succinctly as possible, I will fight such an abandonment of an elected official’s responsibility with every legal method at my disposal.   

My best to you and yours, Lew

PS: This includes, but is not limited to, the “Compassionate-empathetic Lew”, the “Oath Sworn Public Official Lew”, and the Lew formerly known as “Conflicted Lew” because there is no conflict or room for compassionate understanding —  these two obstructionists need to hit the trail!

Categories: Uncategorized.

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