Glenn McGourty Enters Race for 1st District Supervisor
Educator and Agriculturalist Glenn McGourty Enters Race for 1st District Supervisor
Talmage, CA — As the primary election approaches, longtime 1st District resident, educator, and agriculturalist Glenn McGourty has entered the race for 1st District Supervisor.
In addition to being a founding member of the Mendocino County Promotional Alliance (Visit Mendocino), McGourty’s record of public service includes terms as a member of both the Ukiah Unified School District Board of Trustees (2009-13) and the Ukiah City Parks and Recreation Committee (1989-93). Professionally, McGourty has served as the UC Cooperative Extension Winegrowing and Plant Science Advisor for Mendocino County since 1987, providing education and research to support farmers, winemakers, horticulturalists, and gardeners throughout the county. Additionally, he currently serves as County Director for the UC Cooperative Extension office.
“With the many challenges faced by our communities, Mendocino County needs trustworthy leadership with experience and local knowledge now. The 1st District is Mendocino’s home to some of our most vibrant communities and amazing people. I’m excited to announce my candidacy for County Supervisor, and to continue building a more prosperous and vital Mendocino County,” says McGourty.
The 1st District spans Redwood Valley, Potter Valley, and most residential areas surrounding the eastern boundaries of Ukiah. Carre Brown, who currently serves as 1st District Supervisor, announced her retirement from the Board of Supervisors in January 2017. The primary election will be held March 3rd, 2020.
To learn more visit www.McGourtyFor1st.com
Contact: Glenn McGourty - (707) 468.8632 - McGourtyFor1st@gmail.com
Who Is Glen McGourty?
(Probably the Farm Bureau's Next Supervisor)
Glenn McGourty, UC Extension Farm Advisor, Mendocino County branch, is a truculent little fellow paid out of tax money to give free technical advice to grape growers about how to nurture their thirsty fruit.
McGourty's advice is water-intensive. The grape growers plant shallow rootstock so growth can be controlled and pesticides delivered via drip irrigation lines. Shallow-rooted grapes are more vulnerable to frost than the old-style, deep-rooted, dry-farmed grapes such as those grown by Mendocino County’s original grape growers, those hardy sons of the soil, pre-Prohibition Italians. Deep-rooted vineyards can be planted in more frost-prone areas where less water is needed to protect them from spring freezes.
In December of 2009 McGourty and his fellow crybabies traveled to Sacramento where they informed the State Water Resources Control Board that any regulation of their water intensive irrigation and frost protection methods could retard high end booze production.
McGourty was accompanied by Mendocino County Supervisor John McCowen and former Ukiah Supervisor Richard Shoemaker. The latter at the time sat on the Russian River Flood Control District Board which exists for the primary purpose of ensuring that inland Mendocino County grape growers get more than their fair share of Eel and Russian River water at rates far lower than household water tolls. Shoemaker’s fellow board members were and continue to be more vineyard-friendly than he is, if that’s possible.
Elected in theory to represent the welfare of all their constituents, and magically regarded by many of those constituents as “liberals” and “environmentalists,” McCowen and Shoemaker function mainly as advocates for one enterprise — the inland wine industry and its ungaged, unregulated draws on the Russian River.
The hearing in Sacramento was prompted by a fish-kill near Hopland in the spring of 2012 when several vineyards simultaneously turned on their huge pumps for “frost protection,” sucking up so much water from that stretch of the Russian River that there was no water left for the stranded fish, which are nearly extinct in the county to begin with.
Some environmental groups were at the hearing to say that something should be done about the grape people’s habit of “self-regulating” themselves into massive fishkills.
McGourty, McCowen and Shoemaker, accompanied by a hyper-indignant grape grower named Dennis Murphy, opposed water regulation — *any* water regulation. The three of them insisted that the wine industry has built ponds to store water for frost protection and that an “educational” program has been devised to inform grape growers that the wise use of water is, well, wise.
Anderson Valley grape growers have built hundreds of ponds and they still get socked by the spring freeze. The ponds may theoretically help the fish by leaving more water where God put it, in rivers in the dry months, but only if the wine industry limits itself to taking water during high winter flows. And even then, not too much.
Murphy was so overwrought as he spoke to the Water Board that he was nearly in tears: “I’m extremely upset that a federal agency could come up here and make direct accusations about growers and the consequences of irrigation. And then clam up claiming it’s under investigation. That’s wrong! That’s not right! These are rumors. We need to know more.”
Murphy and his political gofers, Shoemaker and McCowen, were basically saying that the government shouldn’t accuse the wine industry of anything unless they have a smoking gun. Several thousand dead baby fish is not that gun, according to wine grape growers. But, of course, there’ll never be a smoking gun because the guns are ungaged, if you'll excuse the failed metaphor. Without gaging, there's no way to measure water extractions or identify the extractors. The grape growers have also staunchly resisted giving water regulators access to the Russian River’s tributaries were huge water draws for grapes also occur.
Over the years the Mendocino County Grand Jury has strongly recommended gages in the Ukiah Valley, but the Supervisors, also captives of the wine industry, refuse to even introduce a gaging ordinance.
Gages, if you still don't get it, would tell us who’s pumping how much and when, and we need gages on the County's major waterways because vineyards continue to be planted literally everywhere and there's simply not enough water to supply all of them without at least some regulatory apportionment.
The hysterical opposition to even the idea of monitoring was effectively captured at the Board of Supervisors meeting a couple of weeks earlir when Coastal Supervisor candidate (and B&B proprietor) Wendy Roberts told the board that “the idea of wine industry regulation scares me to death!”
No one had proposed wine industry regulation, just the “consderation” of it.
But leave it to McGourty to make the single most ridiculous statement at the hearing.
“Regulations never work. Look at marijuana. It’s illegal as heck and yet we have marijuana all over northern California and our county in particular. So people don’t necessarily go along with regulation.”
The difference between the two industries, Glenn, is considerable. The wine industry is legal, ultra-legal you might say, extra-legal perhaps, complete with its own elected representatives all the way up to Congressman Thompson. It also has fixed addresses and the names of its owners are public record. The dope industry at the time of the Water Board meeting was not legal. It can't be regulated until it is legal (and since then, as we’ve seen, it’s become so over-regulated and costly that most growers prefer the unregulated black market). Both the wine industry and the pot biz steal a lot of God's water and, of course, both industries exist to get God's children loaded, closer to God its partisans might argue. But according to McGourty, Mendo’s tax-paid ag advisor, neither need regulation. And neither would abide by it even if there was any.
Running Against McGourty
Just a quick check in to the members of this page and all Mendocino County residents.
Some of you already know me personally and know my busy work schedule, but most don’t. As we get closer to March 3rd (Election Day) more people want to know about the candidates, me being one of them. I apologize for not being able to respond to your questions and comments, but my priorities now are with the Fire Survivors in Redwood Valley and Potter Valley.
The job of District 1 County Supervisor begins January 2021. If elected, aside from my family, the job of County Supervisor will be top priority. Right now, campaigning for that job is not a top priority, getting families back in their home, is.
I will reply to facebook posts when I have the “extra” time, but if you’re seriously wanting to discuss something with me and time is of the essence, please don’t hesitate to contact me personally. My cell number is 707-489-4647 and my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
I look forward to working for the entire county at some point, but for now, I have commitments to those who simply want to go home.
Jon Kennedy, Potter Valley