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MCT: Wednesday, September 4, 2019

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YES, that was an earthquake Tuesday morning about 8am, and it measured at 3.4 on the Richter Scale, and perhaps even higher on the Rictus Meter for some people who experienced it. Here at ava headquarters it was felt as a single sharp jolt. Other people, especially at the Navarro end of the Anderson Valley nearer the little quake's center, said they experienced two jolts in immediate succession. Marshall Newsman says the center of the geologic hiccup was at Tramway Gulch on the Navarro River. A Navarro reporter placed ground zero "at the south fork of the Navarro a mile south of the Flynn Creek Road and 128 intersection.”

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by Rex Gressett

There were two big items on the Fort Bragg Planning Commission agenda last Wednesday night - and one deep mystery hidden in plain sight. Officially on the agenda were the 'Starbucks trees' and municipal pot biz regulations. The mystery just sat there saying nothing.

When Harvest Market bought their chunk of the mill site they knew there were trees on it. You kinda can’t miss the “shaggy little forest” across the highway from Starbucks. It lends a tiny grace even to the Safeway parking lot. In a flat and desolate city, that grove has the grace that only really tall trees can manage. For a grove on the far side of the main drag, the trees are strangely loved. They are a thing. I know the city doesn’t own them, but they are the last and only trees on the mill site and one of the largest groves within the city limits.

For some seriously weird reason, trees are rare in Fort Bragg. Once upon a time, as far as their Mill site property deal went, the trees were cool with Harvest Market - so they said.

When I accused them some months ago in print of betting on the complacency of the city in their ongoing zoning process to pave Harvest's way to profitability on their mill site deal, I got a million negative comments for picking on the retailing heroes and Harvest was quick and firm in their response. No undue influence would ever be contemplated they said in an email to me. Big corporations pushing city officials to do pro-corporate zoning, making magic money and screwing the people of the city is not our style at all.

They were adamant that they expect nothing, nay absolutely nothing, they might even dedicate the land or make a public park or whatever the zoning dice roll gives to us. Don’t worry about us, they said.

But trees never sleep, or maybe they do but they shouldn’t.

At last Wednesday’s Planning Commission meeting, Development Director Marie Jones was expected with her metaphorical sleeves rolled up and a chainsaw. It was her original plan to toss a couple of tree eradication options at the City’s poor planning commission and get to work it. Timber!

Didn’t happen. Marie Jones was all set to be the founder and first implementer of a “Major Vegetation Removal” ordinance. Catchy name. And the first of its kind. But at four o'clock in the afternoon, a mere two hours before the meeting Jones pulled the rug out from under herself and “disappeared” the ordinance. Major Vegetation Removal was “removed” from the agenda.


The whole slaughter-the-trees idea was just the kind of thing at which Marie Jones normally excels. Multiple choices for the chronically bewildered and psychopathically deferential Planning Commission with all outcomes making the same difference. That’s classic Marie Jones.

But it did not happen Wednesday. Not only did the elaborately prepared definitions disappear without explanation, Ms. Jones had to kick rocks and let down an anonymous owner of the mill site (might have been Harvest) who had made the “inquiry” about trees on his or her property. Not her style at all.

In Fort Bragg, “Big Money” almost always get their permits — easy peasy — if they have money and/or influence and if they ask nicely — and sometimes only if they pay the Development Department to do an elaborate, costly study. The Planning Commission is a distant afterthought. Doing the fast and dirty has evolved into something of a specialty over the last few decades for the Development Department. You expect Marie Jones to at least try, and probably to win.

The cabal associated with former City Manager Linda Ruffing was once unstoppable, and Jones has survived into the new age like an artifact of a fallen empire. For whatever reasons, she didn’t say a word Wednesday night, saw no discussion of the “Major Vegetation Removal” definition. Where it went no one knows. They did not move it to a future agenda.

Even weirder (very unusual), City Manager Tabatha Miller showed up at the Planning Commission - saying nothing, looking characteristically competent and somewhat more than usually aware of the discussion.

Marie Jones made the most significant deal for the mill site after the big money came down for the Coastal Trail when she drove down to the big DTSC (State Department of Toxic Substances Control) meeting on cleaning up our toxic mill ponds. She went all by herself — forgetting to tell the City Council. After a tasty lunch, she somehow failed even to mention to the DTSC and the assembled suits the brand new Fort Bragg City Council resolution for total cleanup of the Mill Ponds. Rather than be unpleasant with the big wigs, Jones just went merrily along with their surprise plan to forget cleanup and instead just put up a big fence around a permanent toxic swamp.

I busted her at a public meeting for not disclosure and general sneakiness and eventually, she came clean in an amusingly prissy way. Mayor Lindy Peters contorted himself to forget and nothing came of it.

Fort Bragg was saved from that toxic future when DTSC got religion on rising ocean levels and backed out of all their coastal deals. Lucky Marie Jones. The Development Director appalls me of course, but I truly like her. Marie Jones is the “Joan Jett” of city planners. She doesn’t care about her bad reputation. The shtick is a magnet for real estate innovators who are only asked to fund a study for a decent interval and are assured the professional insiders in Fort Bragg know how to keep public reaction in the box by a deft manipulation of elected representatives. Marie is known to do it with rare virtuosity. Sometimes, real estate entrepreneurs and big idea applicants get to pay someone from the tight-knit community of pay-for-think consultants and Marie merely dishes gravy.

Down at Headlands over coffee, the half-baked savants of Fort Bragg City politics who actually DO get it right most of the time said when the City Council hired Tabatha Miller as our new City Manager, that our old Development Director, wild and crazy Marie Jones, was doomed. Her style had evolved under the Linda Ruffing and could not please the new city manager since any precipitate form of “Major Vegetation Removal” targeting the trees would have pissed off half the town and done nothing good for the illusion of zoning objectivity and creamed the shiny new City Managers reputation. Maybe - just maybe - Tabatha Miller said something. Jones’s door has been decisively shut for two days, She sure ain't around. Probably vacation.


“They did not move it to a future agenda.” is incorrect. When Ms. Jones removed the item at the beginning of the meeting she said “…so we will be looking at that at our September 11 meeting instead…” 

I hope that the people who commented on the item, whether in writing or orally, will do so again when Major Vegetation Removal is added to the September 11 agenda. We have a noticeable dearth of trees in Fort Bragg and that stand provides an important windbreak, among other roles.

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THIS IS A PETITION TO GOVERNOR NEWSOM to request the State of California pay to repair the damage done to Flynn Creek Rd when Hwy 128 is closed due to flooding.

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MARCH 3, 2020

Katrina Bartolomie, Mendocino County Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder, Registrar of Voters would like to remind all Mendocino County voters of the Candidate Filing Dates for the March 3, Primary Election. This new primary election date changes the candidate filing dates we are used to during the Primary process.

Important dates to remember for the March 2020 Primary Election:

SIGNATURES IN LIEU OF FILING FEES – September 12 through November 6, 2019;

JUDICIAL NOTICE OF INTENT – October 28 through November 6, 2019 (Superior Court seats only);

CANDIDATE FILING – November 11 through December 6, 2019

Local seats up for election in March 2020 are: 1st District Supervisor; 2nd District Supervisor; 4th District Supervisor and 3 Superior Court seats. If you are considering running for a local office, please don’t wait until the last minute, we urge you to begin this process as soon as legally possible. A candidate information packet has been posted to our website at:

For additional information, please contact the County Clerk / Election office at (707) 234-6819. Our office is located at 501 Low Gap Road, Room 1020 in Ukiah

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THE ROLLING SWINDLE rolling along under the auspices of a new County Courthouse, rolls on. The Judicial Council of California, an over-large committee of mostly connected lawyers and judges and the politically ambitious, headquartered in posh, unvisited (except for them) offices in the San Francisco Civic Center, has announced that Lake County is their first priority for a brand new courthouse, Mendocino County their fourth most urgent site in the state in need of new quarters for judicial proceedings.

THE SWINDLE in Mendo rests on facts unlikely to be discussed any place but here. But the primary fact, and it's the one on which the rest of the swindle rests, is the site just off West Perkins in Ukiah was once owned by the old railroad that ran between Sausalito and Eureka. Over years of surreptitious maneuverings, Democratic Party bigshots, led by former Congressman Doug Bosco, a handful of these Democrats, with Bosco first in line as Number One creditor, wound up owning much of the abandoned rail line and all of the old train station in Ukiah where the new courthouse will be erected although no one except Bosco and the handful of career officeholders around him, plus a retired Ukiah judge named David Nelson, want a new courthouse.

SUPERVISOR McCOWEN, probably thrilled to be playing with the big boys, has functioned as logistics man on the Ukiah end of this deal, a deal certain to be a major fiscal blow to what's left of old Ukiah and an even larger fiscal blow to the County of Mendocino. It's a long story, aspects of which I've updated and follow below:

RETIRED JUDGE DAVID NELSON has always been an ardent advocate for the unnecessary new County Courthouse. He’s also been the only local advocate, ardent or not so ardent. At a Board of Supervisors meeting back in November of 2015, Nelson accurately described the many problems the new Courthouse will cause when it is built at the old Ukiah Train Depot site, especially on the District Attorney’s office because the new Courthouse will be some four blocks away from the present, perfectly serviceable Courthouse. After that 2015 assessment, Nelson suggested that the solution to the problem would be for the County to acquire a parcel next door to the Depot site and build facilities to house all the offices that will have to scurry back and forth from the present Courthouse to the new Courthouse that will house no one except our monarchical 9 judges. The Supervisors, as always instantly assuming the prone position before higher authority, could only reply “Thank you” to what is obviously a looming disaster for County functioning. And there has been no elaboration from Judge Nelson or anyone else about what to do about the District Attorney, Public Defender, Alternate Public Defender and other public services. We’re not surprised that the Public Defender and Probation departments have been silent on the subject; they’ve never paid much attention to county business unless it directly effects them.

THE RECENT SALE of the NCRA's Ukiah station for the new County Courthouse on West Perkins that nobody wants and maybe ten people outside of Ukiah even know about, a new courthouse which will further damage central Ukiah's struggling business district, is one more inside job by the Northcoast Democrats.

OUR OVER-LARGE Superior Court is joined at the hip to the Northcoast Democratic Party, which in turn is joined at the other hip to Bosco and the NCRA. It was insider baseball all the way as the valuable West Perkins property belonging to the NCRA was designated, then sold to the state for the new Courthouse nobody wants except our Superior Court judges. It will consist entirely of courtrooms and their majesties' "chambers." Toot-toot. All aboard!

UKIAH IS PAYING the usual outside consultant $28,524 to “evaluate traffic impacts to affected streets” for the new County Courthouse that no one except the County's nine (count 'em) judges wants. The new Courthouse, as we've often reported, is proceeding outside the usual public hearings, planning commission and city council approvals that large-scale projects ordinarily require. This thing is especially egregious because it consists mostly of courtrooms and the usual monarchical chambers judges assume these days.

THE 35,850-square-foot courthouse, guaranteed to be a major eyesore much like the now abandoned Willits County Courthouse, will sit on a 4-acre site bounded by East Perkins Street, Leslie Street, the railroad tracks and a residential neighborhood.

THREE MORE privately owned buildings are in the works for the site. They will partly house ancillary court services leased by the County at the usual exorbitant rents the County pays for privately-owned space. Of course traffic will be a mess at an already busy junction not far from Highway 101, although consultants have a way of coming up with rosy reports for the people who've hired them.

WE WROTE to Ukiah mayor Phil Baldwin for information about the new Courthouse and, Que pasa: Hola, Phil: Can you explain how it is that the new County Courthouse no one wants is proceeding outside Ukiah processes? No planning commission, no city council? Is Ukiah paying for a traffic study?

PHIL, always a gent despite the tons of abuse he gets, took a while to reply, but he did: “Sorry for delay in response. The courthouse developer, State of CA, is exempt from our planning process and permit requirements. Traffic study will consider feasibility of connecting Clay St. to Leslie and Hospital Drive to that Clay extension. City does own land on Leslie and NCRA has additional land for RR Depot area private development. Circulation is and will be problem with build out at this site and others throughout City. And no, this traffic study will find no magic to resolve traffic back-ups, yet it needs to be done in advance of the extensions. As you know, I've agreed that for less than half cost of new courthouse, the old one could have been renovated and made safe for all working and attending there. I also believe a 15 minute jitney from old courthouse to new should work just fine to get DA's, public defenders, and others interested to trials on time. — Phil”

MENDOCINO COUNTY DA DAVID EYSTER is emphatically opposed to a new County Courthouse. Alone among the County’s elected officials in his opposition to the project, which would re-locate superior courtrooms four long blocks east of its present location, Eyster says the present Courthouse can be made perfectly serviceable, and for a lot less money than a new "glass box" in the already crowded hospital neighborhood on West Perkins.

THERE hasn't been so much as a squeak of concern from either the Ukiah City Council or the County Board of Supervisors at a proposal that would massively disrupt public and county business simply for the convenience of nine persons — the Superior Court judges themselves. They want new quarters, no one else does.

FORTUNATELY for the functioning of the County’s legal system not to mention the convenience of the un-consulted public, the new Courthouse project is presently stalled in its funding pipeline. But it's inexorably inching towards reality unless the formidable District Attorney is joined in an effort to stop it.

“I AM NOT a proponent of a new Courthouse,” the County’s top law enforcement officer declared. “What you’ve been told is that the present Courthouse is a dangerous building because it is not earthquake-safe. In the last earthquate, as Napa was falling, this place looked out onto downtown Ukiah with no impact on it.”

The DA proceeded to systematically rebut the arguments for the new structure.

“OK, if it’s old, you can do some work to make it safe and workable. They say it's dangerous for security. I can show you how that can be fixed. The front the Courthouse is just plain ugly. I think that’s a selling point to rehab this building because the ugly front facade takes up a lot of space that can be re-done as A usable, attractive work area. The back side of the Courthouse is perfect and beautiful. And it is historically significant. The front of the Courthouse can be made beautiful, too.”

AN HOUR later the DA conducted us on a tour of the premises. As we walked, he made a convincing case for a major re-do of the existing old structure some of which goes back to Mendocino County's beginning. It's clear the energetic prosecutor has given a re-model a lot of thought.

“THEY SAY it’s not safe to move prisoners through the building shared with the general public,” the DA continued. “I understand that. We can talk about that. I’ll show you how that safety issue can be overcome.”

WHICH he soon did, explaining that a re-model of the School Street entrance to the building is eminently doable to funnel defendants directly into a holding area and the elevators up to the courtrooms.

THE ever-upwards cost estimates of the proposed new Courthouse?

“WHAT’S THE NUMBER” Eyster demanded. “$96 million, or has it been revised? It’s come down lately. It was around $120 million at one point. I’ll say we can do what I’ll describe for $91 million,” he laughed. “In the private sector if I said I could do this under budget I’d get a bonus of half of what I saved! I’m for incentives to get things right.”

Eyster was critical of the apparent desire of the County’s judges to enjoy their own facilities. Exclusively. The proposed structure would house only their courtrooms and chambers and staff. “The new thinking with the courts is, we don’t want to share public facilities with any other entity. When we close the door at night we don’t want anyone in our building.”

“AS YOU SEE,” Eyster said, referring to the unending bustle between the DA’s offices on the ground floor and the upstairs courtrooms, “we are constantly back and forth, up and down the stairs. We’re a workhorse operation — file it, get it here to there. It’s all on us. They [the judges] demand it all happen in a timely manner. We serve them.”

"If we have to shuttle up and down Perkins… Well, there goes the schedule."

THE DA pointed out the window of his conference room at the random sprawl of busy West Perkins Street and State Street, the heart of Ukiah.

“DOWN past Rainbow Ag and the new sports bar there’s the railroad station. On days like this — bright, sunny, cheerful — maybe it’s relatively easy for us to get 50 to 100 cases up and down Perkins without the files falling apart on the street. But last year when all the cats and dogs were falling out of the sky, explain to me the means of getting the cases down the street safely and whole. We’d have to have drying rooms for our files.”

The DA remembers receiving the sales pitch for the new courtrooms on Perkins.

“It was Henderson and Nelson in that order. [Both judges are now retired.] It wasn’t a conversation about what do you think about it, it was: We’re doing this. Good luck to you, our ship is sailing a certain course and we don’t even know if you have a ticket.”

DA media officer, Mike Geniella remembered, “One of them said we could have a golf cart system running back and forth.”

“AS I SIT in my office and watch State and Perkins,” Eyster replied, “I see lots of accidents. Golf carts running around downtown means there’s lots that can go wrong with that. This is an after-the-fact response to the judges' position of, This is what we’re doing. Ok, they said, you can help us by buying property down here for your offices. I don’t have that kind of purse, and the last time they discussed it with the County, they said no to any purchases of property for Courthouse offices. The County doesn't have the money, either.”

“ONE of the problems that this building has,” the DA conceded, “is asbestos. So we had an asbestos survey come in and they found some in our offices that we had to mitigate. Nothing significant. Experts came in from the Central Valley. They got it done inexpensively. None of the problems with this building are insurmountable, but the State Judicial Council says, We do what we want and you have to take it. They can do things by fiat.”

EYSTER points to Auburn's showcase Courthouse.

“It looks like the old Courthouse that it is, but inside they have all the modern amenities; they incorporated everything into their old building. Knocking it down would have meant the loss of significant history. We can do that here. Look at the new courthouses around the state. They’re all glass boxes, designs that do not fit the character or history of this area. They make no effort to make their new buildings aesthetically pleasing. We already have enough things being pushed across Hospital Drive, and here comes a new courthouse? And the traffic coming off 101 at Perkins already backs up! The Courthouse only should have been moved if it was consolidated with a new jail. That's not happening."

DEPUTY CRAIG WALKER, appeared before the Board of Supervisors on a Tuesday morning in May of 2014 to make the following remarks during public expression:

“Good morning. Craig Walker appearing strictly in my capacity as President of the Deputy Sheriff's Association. You might be surprised that I'm here this morning not to talk about negotiations or money. Rather, we’d like to talk about an issue that we would like to take a stand on and we would welcome your participation as well. That would be the prospective new courthouse. I think everyone in the room is familiar with some of the well-known issues involved there and the impact it would have on the downtown should the courthouse be relocated. Although we share those sentiments, our organization is concerned about the county's potential exposure to costs that will be in our opinion forced upon us by the relocation. We are referring specifically to the idea that the proposed new courthouse would house strictly court employees and that the county employees who currently are housed within the existing court facility and nearby would have to travel that extra distance. We don't think that's a feasible alternative for the medium or long term. What we envision is the county being forced at some point to construct another building down by the new courthouse or lease space at substantial cost and that we would then be on the hook for maintenance of the old and abandoned facility and all of these things could easily run into the millions of dollars in cost for the county that the state, as far as we can tell, is not factoring into their planning. So for those reasons our organization is adamantly opposed to relocating the courthouse. We feel that some reasonable renovations to the existing structure could be made at a fraction of the cost. We realize that this project is being driven by the State Office of the Courts and not by the county and not by some other local agency. Nevertheless, we think that because of that ancillary exposure to the County and to the county employees that we really need to work together and oppose this project and we will be contacting the Governor’s office and the Administrative Office of the Court to express our displeasure and we would like to think that you would join us in that regard. Thank you.”

The Board did not inquire or comment on Deputy Walker’s remarks.

AT THIS POINT, the only way to get the Board of Supervisors to pay any attention to the New Courthouse Problem — which at this late date seems to be a done deal — would be for the DA to submit a “new courthouse budget” adding x-hundred thousand dollars per year to his otherwise well-managed budget to accommodate all the time, equipment, vehicles, and hassle he’ll have to waste ferrying work up and down Perkins Street.

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For plutocrats, this summer has gotten a bit scary. Two feared candidates are rising. Trusted candidates are underperforming. The 2020 presidential election could turn out to be a real-life horror movie: A Nightmare on Wall Street.

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ON FRIDAY, AUGUST 30, at approx. 10:30 pm, UPD officers were dispatched to the 1000 block of Cunningham St. for a report of a traffic collision. Upon arrival, officers observed a blue 1992 Acura Integra that had backed up on to a power pole guy-wire.

A witness to the traffic collision advised officers that the driver had fled from the scene on foot and provided officers with a detailed description of the suspect (later identified as Joshua Fox, age 21 of Ukiah).

A short time later, UPD received a call that stated Fox was hiding in the 900 block of Waugh Lane near another vehicle. UPD officers responded to the area and contacted Fox, who had just exited a garage in the area.

Fox had since changed his clothing from the time of the collision by taking some clothing from the garage (which didn’t belong to him). The owner of the clothing declined to pursue criminal charges regarding the theft of clothing.

Fox had a small laceration on his forehead that was bleeding. Fox first denied being in a collision and then later acknowledged having been in one.

Fox was identified by the witness at the scene of the traffic collision as being the driver of the vehicle at the time of the collision. Fox displayed objective signs of alcohol intoxication, was on probation for DUI and hit and run, and also had a suspended/revoked driver’s license.

Fox was arrested for DUI - Misdemeanor, Hit & run traffic collision - Misdemeanor, Drive on a suspended license - Misdemeanor, Violation of probation (for DUI and hit and run) – Misdemeanor, and lodged at the Mendocino County Jail, where his bail was set to $32,500.

The City of Ukiah Electric Department responded to the scene and assessed the possible damage to the power pole. Fox’s vehicle was dismounted from the guy-wire and towed away from the scene.

Anyone with additional information regarding the traffic collisions is urged to contact UPD at 707-463-6262.

(Ukiah Police Department)

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“And this next one — is this the kind of racism that advances my career or ends it?”

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We are proud to announce a local interview with Robert Pinoli. Born and raised in Anderson Valley, Robert has retired from AVUSD. He has more that 35 years in public service to Anderson Valley School District. He has been Shop Teacher, Assist Prin., Basketball and baseball coach, and long time Athletic Director. He is the current commissioner of the Coastal Mountain Conference for the North Coast Section. Weds at 3 on the sports Phone on Kzyx and z 90.7 FM

Jim Young

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Allen, Bain, Chavira

TAJ ALLEN, Willits. Burglary.

CARA BAIN, Clearlake/Redwood Valley. Controlled substance.

ADAM CHAVIRA, Redwood Valley. Vandalism, resisting.

Faber, Fitch, Frease, Hoaglen

SCOTT FABER, Ukiah. Stolen property, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

FREDRICK FITCH, Ukiah. Domestic abuse, probation revocation.

AUGUSTINE FREASE, Hopland. County parole violation.

TEVIN HOAGLEN, Covelo. Domestic battery, probation revocation.

Hodges, Joaquin, Keyser

JODI HODGES, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation.

DAVID JOAQUIN, Covelo. County parole violation. (Frequent Flyer)

CHRISTOPHER KEYSER, Potter Valley. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, probation revocation.

Nelson, Oliver, Piceno, Rhien

TONY NELSON, Ukiah. Domestic abuse, probation revocation.

LUIS OLIVER, Covelo. Controlled substance, controlled substance while armed with loaded firearm, felon-addict with firearm.

SOPHIA PICENO, Talmage. Trespassing.

SEAN RHIEN, Clearlake/Ukiah. Parole violation.

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A dispensary has yet to open in this city of 70,000, but commerce in Cannabis products was in full swing Saturday, August 24, when the Alameda Natural Grocery hosted an event promoting supplements containing CBD (cannabidiol), a non-psychoactive component of the plant with some proven health benefits. Repesentatives of 16 manufacturers were on hand to answer questions and offer samples of salves, tinctures, edibles and drinks, all of which are available at the grocery, which is Alameda's answer to the Berkeley Bowl

The banner proclaiming the event — “Hemp Hemp Hooray”— signaled its legality. Although cannabis remains illegal under federal law, the US Congress in 2018 defined “hemp” to mean Cannabis plants or products containing less than 0.3% THC (the plant's psychoactive component).

CBD first came to widespread public attention in 2013 when Dr. Sanjay Gupta documented its dramatic anti-seizure effects on CNN with footage of two-year-old Charlotte Figi and interviews with her parents. Charlotte's mother formed a support group for families of epileptic children, many of whom couldn't get medical marijuana in their home states and moved to Colorado. The cultivators who provided Charlotte's CBD-rich tincture, the Stanley brothers, expanded operations to meet expanded demand, not just as a treatment for seizure disorders, but from people who found that CBD had anti-inflammatory and other beneficial effects.

The Stanleys (there are seven brothers, all of whose names start with J) have built a leading brand wih help from the state of Colorado, which legalized cultivation of hemp (<03% THC) in 2014, well ahead of the feds. At the Alameda Natural Grocery event the “Charlotte's Web” line included two products for dogs and three flavors of CBD-infused gummy bears — a perfect example of how the current Hemp CBD boom was begat by the medical marijuana movement. The grocery's best-selling CBD-infused products are mints and candies.

The US Food & Drug Administration has granted approval to the manufacturer of a 99% CBD cannabis extract called Epidiolex to treat two rare forms of epilepsy. Supplement manufacturers can run afoul of the FDA if they claim their products provide medical benefit, so they have developed a parallel vocabulary, in which "improves mood" substitutes for "antidepressant."

The grocery's marketing director Tully Velte estimates that “around 100 people actively engaged with a vendor or two” during the three-hour event. Most were regular Saturday afternoon shoppers, she says. Each vendor played up elements that made their brand special. CBDMendo is extracted by "Certified Organic pharmaceutical grade, US Pharmacopeia Approved grape alcohol for superior absorption." CBD Arnica Cream from BeRooted Botanicals also contains "St. John's Wort, Helichrysm, Blue Tansy, and other healing heavy hitters." But wait, there's more!

Given that CBD has become a household word, I wondered why hemp got top billing on the banner. Velte explained: “We decided that emphasizing the hemp portion was our broadest and safest messaging angle. This in part because CBD is relatively new to the mainstream public and is often closely tied to the idea of cannabis and marijuana. Although it is totally safe and legal to sell there are people who are surprised that it is available outside of a dispensary. Hemp helps distinguish in a small way the two totally different products. Also, we know of several stores and producers who have had some of their online accounts frozen or banned for promoting CBD. We didn't promote as heavily as we could have based on this as well. The idea of the event was to educate people on what exactly CBD is, and that it is hemp-derived was a less intimidating, less stigmatized entry point.”

(Fred Gardner)

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"BLACK, BROWN, & BEIGE" opens Symphony season. On Saturday, Sept. 14 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 15 at 2 p.m., the Ukiah Symphony Orchestra presents "Black, Brown, and Beige," its debut concert of the 2019-20 season, at the Mendocino College Center Theatre. The concert features jazz and gospel vocalist Shelene Huey-Booker performing Duke Ellington's "Black, Brown, and Beige Suite." The orchestra will once again repurpose as a big band to play other pieces, including a jazz interpretation of Edvard Grieg's "Peer Gynt Suite" arranged by Ellington and his frequent collaborator, Billy Strayhorn. One hour before each concert time, Ukiah Symphony Director Phillip Lenberg will give a 30-minute talk amplifying the story behind the music.

Tickets for "Black, Brown, and Beige" are available at; Mendocino Book Company in Ukiah; or at the door, where credit cards are now accepted. Tickets are $30 for ages 18 to 64; $25 for age 65 and up; and free for ASB card holders and youth under 18. Group-discounted tickets are available online. Wine and beer are now available at the venue. For more information contact the Ukiah Symphony at (707) 510-1793.

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The Forest Reciprocity Group in collaboration with Polecraft Solutions will demonstrate how to assemble the timber frame of a single family dwelling on Saturday, September 21, 10am in Ukiah at 200 Hensley Creek Rd. nearby Mendocino Community College. This is a hands on workshop where Polecraft Solutions' mortise and tenon technique for joining round poles will be demonstrated. Also, the esteemed John Cunnan will offer his Small Diameter Pole Furniture building workshop. Furniture workshop participants will come away with a beautiful, functional 3 legged stool ($30 materials fee). Timber frame demo is free, donations welcome. The Forest Reciprocity Group is an educational initiative of Cloud Forest Institute. FRoG seeks to unburden forests of overcapacity fire fuel load small diameter poles. In reciprocity, we receive an abundance of valuable building material for affordable housing and economic revitalization. For more information contact Jenny, 707-380-5059.

Timber Framing Teamwork, Laytonville, May 25

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FLOW KANA IS HOSTING a series of free community picnics throughout the Emerald Triangle!

Sunday, Sept. 15th – Redwood Valley – 10am-4pm at Flow Cannabis Institute (Parking will be behind the American Craft Whisky Distillery at 1110 Bel Arbres Road, Redwood Valley)

Saturday, October 5th – Whitethorn – 10am-4pm at Whitethorn Construction Campus

Sunday, October 20th – Laytonville – from 10am-4pm at Harwood Park

These are family-friendly picnics (no pets). There will be free food trucks, games, face painting, a kids’ zone, and 99.5 The Tee will be on hand at the Mendocino events with lots of great raffles for baseball tickets, family outings, and local businesses. Raffle proceeds will benefit the local fire departments. It’s a great way to spend a day! Guests are welcome to bring a dessert to share!


Hey- Let’s celebrate our selling-out of our community to an out-of-area upstart company backed by funding from a New York City-based private equity firm!! Isn’t that what “community” is really about anyways? And while these large corporations pay fees to eradicate everybody too poor or unwilling to go along with the state corporatization take-over let’s welcome them as “friends”. Staying positive as they strip away everything we thought we had as special values…the rich become richer and everybody else becomes a wage slave. Yay!!! Yay for Gotham Green Partners and Yay! for Cronos Group and Yay! for internatonal investors we welcome into our county to take over future decisions and control!

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BORIS JOHNSON, by the way, looked pretty much the same at 15 as he does at 55, and was a familiar sight as he charged and flapped his way around the college lanes. The bigfoot stoop (he was known as ‘the Yeti’), the bumbling confidence, the skimmed-milk pallor, the berserk hair, the alarming air of imminent self-harm, which gave the impression that he had been freshly released from some protective institution: all was already in place.

— Tom Crewe

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11TH ANNUAL UKIAH VALLEY ARTIST OPEN STUDIO Tour September 14th Ukiah, CA: Saturday, September 14th, the 11th Annual Ukiah Valley Artist Open Studio Tour is happening! This once a year free extravaganza of sixteen artists showcases behind-the-scenes looks at some of the diverse and uniquely different art Ukiah and Redwood Valley artists create. From oil & acrylic paintings to jewelry, repurposed sculptures to watercolor, textile art to photograph, there is something for everyone to feast their eyes on.

Bring your friends and family to tour this free self-guided event, meet the artists, share some food and drink while experiencing a day full of art and creativity.

Sponsored by the Ukiah Valley Artist Coop, the artists this year include Marie Pera, Sherry Breeden, Debbie Worra, Garry Colson, Mary Monroe, Jeanne Koelle, Patti Kubran, Adele Pruitt, Jaye Moscariello, Spencer Brewer, Esther Siegel, Sharon Fenton, Cheryl Curry and her late father’s artwork Don Pagano, Jeanne Kennedy and Charles Montgomery.

For more information call 707-489-4771 or email at

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Needing Solidarity

Am still at Robert Eggplant's place in Pinole on the couch. Is anybody interested in going to Washington, D.C. for the climate justice shut down of the "belly of the beast" third week of September? Also, I'd like to give my hosts their living room back…can I get a short term guest stay with you in the SF bay area for one week, beginning soon?

Craig Louis Stehr


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Judy and Daney, you know what's been proven more dangerous than 5G? Here's a short list, not in any particular order:

Soap, pencils and paper, sitting, walking, water (well, river, steam, rain), air, sea salt, germs (on keyboards, shopping basket and gas nozzle handles and etc.), food, superstition (religion, demons and spirits, prayer, ritual), air, sunlight, darkness, thoughts, massage, pets, art, the mites living in everyone's eyebrow follicles, windows, doors, steps, other people, toilets, everything in the kitchen (knife and fork, dish towel, dishes, fridge, drawers, food, spices, stove, sink), musical instruments, sounds (language, silence), smells, books and shelves, a clock, clothes, hats, kites, mirrors, eyeglasses (and skipping eyeglasses), sleep (and missing sleep), gravity, levity…

Marco McClean

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“Well, if you didn’t do anything to North Korea, then why do they keep launching missiles at us?”

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THE HEAD RIDE (Part 3 of 4)

by Denis Rouse

This one’s going to be a real head ride. It’s a ride in my head going on right now. No need for a boring tire pressure check or filling up at the local fossil fuel station. It’s passing five pm and the drinking lamp is lit. We’re gassed up, we’re high on life, and we’re fulminating on a real ride in the future after I’ve endured another mid-winter birthday and when there’s no black ice in the shade of a corner that says seemingly with shining sensuous lips, take me with celerity. This thought could lead to another subject other than riding motorcycles, but the editor would excise it as quickly as a chicken pecks a June bug, so let’s move on. The venue here in my aging gray matter is east central Oregon, east of the Cascades, east of anywhere near Portland where the beige latte people live. The venue here is spare and sparse and the lonely road ascends the high rounded humps of undulating grain that could be mountains on the moon, from deep cuts it arises circuitously, precipitously, then you look back at the upright snake upon which you have ridden, pull over, and tell your co-rider (her name is Diana Dors, remember her?) to ride back down there for a shot of a section of road often portrayed in a rider’s most humid wet dreams. If it’s a full moon coming that night, you’ll want to ride on not much further than a ghost town that comes up quickly on the road ahead, it can be properly called a ghost town, the homes are gray and weather hammered by a hundred winters, if there’s a business still open on Main Street it’s not obvious, but you can tell by some curtains billowing in open windows, someone still lives here, and if you’re lucky you can find a place to stay, because you’ll want to ride back up the snake that night for the view of the great high rounded undulating humps of the mountains of the moon bathed in the haunting pewter shadowed light of that lunar body in full splendor.

I like thinking of scenes from future rides. It’s fantasizing of course but it’s fantasizing that could easily connect to reality in the very near future. Now we’re in Big Pine, California, a small town in the Owens Valley fifteen miles south of Bishop, where Highway 395 is Main Street, where you’re sandwiched between the great vertical walls of the Eastern Sierra and the more ancient White Mountains to the east, where Rossi’s Steak House is just a short walk north from your room at the Big Pine Motel where your Harlem Davidson Fat Boy is safely ensconced three feet away from your front door. If Mike Rossi is presiding at the bar at Rossi’s you’re in luck because Mike’s cattle raising family goes back a long way here. The man and the Rossi family photographs framed on the wall, is immersion into local history and isn’t experiencing that one of the main reasons why you ride? If not, I weep for you. Anyway, in the morning, after an evening of steaks and spaghetti and libation and connection to the past in the upper Owens Valley, you get up early for breakfast somewhere in Big Pine where bacon and eggs and hash browns edges burnt brown in bacon gravy are available since the high end lipids from such a breakfast are an immediate hangover cure. Then, ah, up you go on the road that soars dramatically to the east up to the summit of the White’s where grow the oldest living things on this poor disturbed planet of ours, Bristlecone pines, the five thousand year old living things that have survived all of man’s time here. If they could talk, these ancient trees would tell you a tale that would blow all of your conceptions of religion and philosophy, and reality too for that matter, right out the little window through which you’ve been observing things for most of the years of your life here in Toonerville. From the eight thousand foot summit of the Westgard Pass you pause at an overlook and gaze below eastward at the floor of a desert valley that seems to sprawl forever, for at least for as far as your miserable eyes can see, but there on the desert floor you see a small patch of green. It’s Deep Springs College, founded 1917 by an electrical engineer pioneering alternating current, he then realizing a student’s learning curve was a sharp vertical rise in the absence of distractions like women and alcohol. Students there now study Shakespeare and help run the cattle ranch in which the college is centered, the founder having as high a regard for Emersonian self-reliance as he did for ground-breaking thinking in hydro-electricity. Do not simply ride by the entrance to Deep Springs College, rather pull in, park the bike, see the nice lady at the desk in the office, and request information about Deep Springs College, about why this place of important California history is so little known by the nice people in Los Angeles. This to me is what motorcycle touring is all about, it’s called discovery, and it is not called riding from Point A to Point B and then having a Fat burger before you go to bed.

Alright, while we’re dreaming of future rides, here’s another one. You and the woman who rides pressed up behind you, the one you call your co-pilot to soothe her irrational fears about riding her own bike behind you (cheer up, men, her epiphany is coming), have checked into the retro Back Bay Inn in Baywood at the southern end of Morro Bay. Your killer sunset view is the big golden orb going down beyond the spit that separates the bay from the raging sea. You’re happy, she’s happy. The wine hour at the Inn has gone well. Your motorcycle is parked safely two feet from the front door of your room. The big issue of the moment is, how in the hell are you going to get ferried into downtown Morro Bay for the western world’s finest Japanese fare at Harada’s? Consult the nice lady at the office of The Back Bay Inn. Trust me, a cab can be called. You can get to Harada’s, but can you get back? Honestly, I think you can, but for the moment, who the fuck cares? Harada-san is a master of Japanese cuisine. You want Dynamite Roll, he will do it for you, but he will want to behead you too. Notice the big live sweet shrimp in the aquarium behind the sushi bar, notice half of the shrimp are isolated from the main tank; they still have pink roe attached to their bellies. Tell Harada you want the amaebi with the roe attached. He will know then that you are not a gaigin schmuck, and the rest of your evening will go as well as your mightiest gustatory dreams have suggested. Tomorrow, you ride south. Toward L.A. But take heart, in Santa Maria, your writer has a plan for breakfast. You will love his plan.

Now, before you get the idea your writer rides to eat rather than eats to ride, you are correct. This is the first time I’ve admitted this to anyone, so relax. Ok, you’re riding south on the two-lane 101 super slab. Hopefully, the traffic is light, you’re not dealing with people driving automobiles behind you and in front of you and astride you who are obviously addled by living way too many years in places like once sane Arroyo Grande that is now a community with all the charm of a Wal-Mart parking lot, where the freeway is now the main artery between the fucking malls and the gated communities of the condos of the brain dead where you visit a mother and daughter one day who live in one of those spendy spiritually barren bookless boxes with windows facing the sea and ask Mama, What is that great promontory to the south jutting into the sea?, you knowing full well that it’s Point Conception, one of the definitive geographic exclamation points of Central California, and she answers, “I don’t know”, and her facial expression indicates to you that she thinks you’re an elitist asshole for even asking a question like that. Existential isolation is a very lonely place. Belay that. When you reach Santa Maria keep your eyes open for the Guadalupe off ramp. Guadalupe is a still very authentic Mexican town populated heavily by Mexican farmworkers, many of whom have been here for generations, it’s the kind of town Caesar Chavez would have loved and I’d bet my boots he was here. You’re here for a real Mexican breakfast, and it’s here, in a little storefront place on Main Street, where Mama makes the huevos rancheros and the salsa and the tortillas from scratch, and the whole familia feeling in the place causes you to lament why you were born a white man in the first place.

After breakfast, your writer suggests riding west on the old road out to Guadalupe Beach to check out one of the last great estuaries left in coastal California, the mouth of the Santa Maria River, where a sign at the entrance warns visitors to be vigilant regarding the presence here of mountain lions who have been known to scare the bezeezus out of beachgoers in the recent past, especially those with pets and young children. Ignore this warning. Any lion worth her salt has heard your Harley coming from two miles away, and she wants no part of you. Inhale deeply the rarefied ocean air here. You’re alone at last. The next part of your journey begins just south at the Betteravia off ramp. It’s sad that freeway off ramps have become definitive here, but get over it. I love the last lines in “The Lion In Winter” when the 12th century English king, Henry II, in a secession crisis, played masterfully by Peter O’Toole, yells to his former queen Eleanor of Aquitaine, Katherine Hepburn at the top of her game, she standing astern on a river boat pulling away on the Thames returning her to exile ordered by the king, “Do you think we can live forever, Ellie?” He laughs uproariously. She laughs heartily too. End of movie. At the Betteravia off ramp, descend it and turn left and proceed for several miles on the long straights that border the vast rich agricultural fields of the Santa Maria coastal plain to the hamlet of Sisquoc (it means meeting place in the language of the Chumash, a native peace-loving people who lived here for millennia before the place was called California, they’re long gone of course). Keep onward for a few miles until you see a chapel on a hill. This is the San Ramon Chapel erected with redwood in 1875. In the graveyard there is a stone memorializing an early settler, a British sea captain, Benjamin C. Foxen. Another stone memorial nearby, this one along the road here, it’s called Foxen Canyon Road, reads “Here on Christmas Day 1846 natives and soldiers from the presidio lay in ambush for Lt. Col, John C. Fremont U.S.A. and his battalion. Advised of the plot Fremont was guided over the San Marcos Pass by Benjamin Foxen and his son William, and captured Santa Barbara without bloodshed”. Remember Chinese wisdom, No good deed goes unpunished. Captain Foxen was married to a lovely Mexican lass at the time. Her family and many of their neighbors regarded Foxen’s guidance of the Bear Flag rebels as traitorous; they burned afterwards his ranch house. Report to the nearby Sisquoc Winery. Taste the elixir produced here on the grounds of an old Spanish land grant, the tasting fee is exorbitant, but you get to keep the glass etched with a likeness of the San Ramon Chapel. Lucky you.

Ok, the drinking lamp is still lit, not flickering yet, but close. Now it’s a winter night with a full winter gale howling, wind blowing forty miles an hour with occasional violent gusts that exceed that, temperature is 32-degrees, wind chill far in excess of that (consult your wind chill chart here to sober up). You’re inside your garage sitting upon your Fat Boy. The little woman is in the kitchen making your favorite version of her wonderful meat loaf, which is to say she has made an extra lava load of gravy to accommodate your sick overdo needs in this regard. You’re sitting there in your garage on your ride, on your Harley, dreaming of your next ride when a night like tonight is a dim but wonderful memory. She opens the door between the kitchen and your garage and says something like, “Honey, just took the meatloaf out of the oven but the meatloaf is still in the oven if you know what I mean”. You, you poor deranged fool, know exactly what she means. Your Harley can wait. You are a truly blessed man and tonight, sitting on your Harley in your garage with the battery tender plugged in, you realize in a pique of ardor, that she’s the best. All of your past stupidity re women suddenly rears its ugly head like a vile hydra and asks, “What were you thinking?”. The video of your past isn’t pretty; it’s laced with failure after failure after failure with an occasional ephemeral win thrown in between. Guess what? In Spanish it’s called la vida, life. And if we’re very lucky we end up like tonight with the meatloaf in the oven.

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  1. mr. wendal September 4, 2019


    “They did not move it to a future agenda.” is incorrect. When Ms. Jones removed the item at the beginning of the meeting she said “…so we will be looking at that at our September 11 meeting instead…”

    I hope that the people who commented on the item, whether in writing or orally, will do so again when Major Vegetation Removal is added to the September 11 agenda. We have a noticeable dearth of trees in Fort Bragg and that stand provides an important windbreak, among other roles.

    • Bruce McEwen September 4, 2019

      Maj. “Veggie” Removal.. ?…. sounds familiar, rings a bell, lemme think a minute… Oh, yes! I’ve got it: isn’t he the martinet subaltern of the famed Gen. Species Eradication?

    • James Marmon September 4, 2019

      Watching Jed Diamond drives me crazy, always “framing and/or re-framing. Exactly why therapist should be kept in the back room and under strict supervision.

      I worry about Mark Mertle though, he looks like he could go off at anytime.

      • Lazarus September 4, 2019

        The hard of hearing folk in the audience? and all that tapdancing and spin that followed… phony, crony, baloney.
        As always,

  2. Bill Pilgrim September 4, 2019

    RE: Love It Or Leave It.

    Nice photo of what looks like Cuffy’s Cove. One issue: the tall, feathery topped plants are Pampas Grass, an invasive species that is proliferating in certain areas along the coast. Ought to be removed.

    • Bruce McEwen September 4, 2019

      WANTED: Pompous Ass to remove Pompas Grass

      Hear that, Pat Kittle? Isn’t invasive species removal your specialty (esp. when it invades from South of the Border)?

  3. Craig Stehr September 4, 2019

    Melting of Ice
    We keep our feet steady and introspect the inner state. When a thought occurs, we must thoroughly examine it and trace it to its origin. When it is found that the thought arises from the realm of no-birth, then all illusory notions, feelings, and anxieties will at once disappear just like the melting of ice.

    – Han-Shan Te-Ch’ing (1546-1623)

  4. Lazarus September 4, 2019

    Ain’t marriage great!
    As always,

  5. John Sakowicz September 5, 2019


    The following are the 58 gender options identified by the good editors of the AVA. Please pick one:

    Cis Female
    Cis Male
    Cis Man
    Cis Woman
    Cisgender Female
    Cisgender Male
    Cisgender Man
    Cisgender Woman
    Female to Male
    Gender Fluid
    Gender Nonconforming
    Gender Questioning
    Gender Variant
    Male to Female
    Trans Female
    Trans* Female
    Trans Male
    Trans* Male
    Trans Man
    Trans* Man
    Trans Person
    Trans* Person
    Trans Woman
    Trans* Woman
    Transgender Female
    Transgender Male
    Transgender Man
    Transgender Person
    Transgender Woman
    Transsexual Female
    Transsexual Male
    Transsexual Man
    Transsexual Person
    Transsexual Woman

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