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Thousands in Sierra foothills without power

IONE, Calif. (AP) -- Thousands of people in a handful of small communities in the Sierra Nevada foothills southeast of Sacramento remained without electricity after a power outage hit the area.

A spokeswoman for Pacific Gas & Electric Co. says about 22,000 people in the communities of Ione, Jackson, Sutter Creek and San Andreas still had no power late Monday after an outage that began a little after noon.

Spokeswoman Jana Morris says the cause of the outage is believed to have originated in the utility's transmission equipment. Initially about 35,000 people had lost electrical service.

The communities affected by the outage are in Amador and Calaveras counties, southeast of Sacramento.

Morris said late Monday that PG&E had hoped to have service restored by midnight.

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