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MCT: Friday, January 10, 2020

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SHOWERS spread across the area by this afternoon, with continued pulses of rain and light mountain snow persisting for the foreseeable future. (National Weather Service)

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DAVE JOHNSON of Sonoma owns the blitzed property in the center of Boonville. We've been trying to reach Johnson to ask him when the mounds of rubble and wreckage left from the terribly destructive fire might be removed and the property returned to productive use. But Johnson's phone has been disconnected and we don't know of any way to reach him since he's also not reachable by e-mail.

THE COUNTY won't make rubble removal and restoration easy, although we understand a sufficient portion of most property insurance policies, probably including Johnson's, contain ample reimbursement for clean-up.

JOHNSON'S piles of debris from a once thriving complex that included the old Lodge, the Pic-N-Pay Market, Lizzby's Restaurant, and several small housing units are subject to the following procedures, meaning central Boonville may look like the London Blitz for many months:

MENDOCINO COUNTY FIRE RECOVERY Cleanup Process for Private Residences

Step 1: Submit an “Asbestos Notification form for Demolition and Renovation” to Mendocino County Air Quality Management District (MCAQMD).

The MCAQMD in accordance with Code of Federal Regulations 40 CFR 61 subpart M requires anyone conducting a demolition or renovation project to thoroughly inspect the affected facility for the presence of asbestos. Single family residential dwellings of less than five units are exempt from fees, but the MCAQMD still requires consultation for all burned structures.

Mendocino County Air Quality Management District (707) 463-4354

306 E. Gobbi St, Ukiah CA 95482

Step 2: Submit a “Grading Notification” to Mendocino County Air Quality Management District.

The MCAQMD requires notification for the removal of large volumes of ash to limit and control potential dust generated during removal.

Mendocino County Air Quality Management District (707) 463-4354

306 E. Gobbi St, Ukiah CA 95482

Step 3: Obtain a Demolition Permit from Mendocino County Planning and Building Services if the structure was a complete loss, or a Remodel Permit if the structure incurred partial damage.

Once notification has been given to MCAQMD, Mendocino County Planning and Building Services can issue a Demolition or a Remodel Permit. The Permit application is the same form as a Building Permit application.

Fill out a Building Permit application (open in adobe for fillable fields), located under the “Building Applications and Handout” section, titled “NEW Building Application”:

Provide 1 copy of the Plot Plan (the entire parcel, everything on it, location of structure to be demolished, distance to property lines, etc.), also under “Building Applications and Handout” section, titled “Plot Plan Requirements”:

NOTE: The County only allows the property owner (on the deed), or a California State Licensed contractor to obtain a permit. If another party would like to obtain a permit on the property owner’s behalf, they must provide a signed Agent/Applicant Authorization Form. Click the link above for forms Building Applications and Handouts.

Mendocino County Planning and Building Services (707) 234-6650

860 N. Bush St. Ukiah, CA 95482

Step 4: Have the ash tested for hazardous waste classification.

This test is to determine which solid waste facilities are permitted to receive the ash once removed from the property. The ash is sampled and analyzed for hazardous properties to determine the waste classification. The three tests that must be performed on the ash are:

CAM 17 Heavy Metals (EPA 200.7, EPA 6010B, EPA 6010C) (sampled by homeowner or consultant)

pH test for corrosivity (sampled by homeowner or consultant)

Asbestos Test for friability (sampled by a Certified Asbestos Consultant)

Laboratories in Mendocino County:

Alpha Analytical Laboratories (707) 468-0401

208 Mason St, Ukiah, CA 95482

Alpha Labs Chain of Custody Form:

List of Certified Asbestos Consultants & Technicians

Contact your waste hauler to request a bin or large dumpster, and forward them your sampling results. They will use the results to identify special handling requirements and final waste destination locations.

C & S Waste Solutions (707) 234-6400 3515

Taylor Drive Ukiah, CA 95482

Solid Wastes of Willits (800) MY-GARBAGE

351 Franklin Ave. Willits CA 95490

Waste Management- Fort Bragg (707) 964-9171

219 Pudding Creek Rd., Fort Bragg, CA 95437

Waste Management- Ukiah (707) 462-2063

450 Orr Springs Rd., Ukiah, CA 95482

If choosing to self-haul, contact the transfer station or final destination landfill to determine the requirements for acceptance. Plan to forward your testing results to the transfer station or landfill to ensure the facility will accept the ash and to avoid being turned away at the gate. Ash may not be self-hauled to a transfer station or landfill without prior approval from the facility.

Step 5: Complete cleanup of the structure.

Clean up of the material may be performed by the property owner or licensed contractor with any of the following licenses:

General Contractor “A”

C-21 Demolition

If the ash has tested positive for Asbestos the contractor must have the following licenses:

C-22 Asbestos Abatement — “ASB” Asbestos Certification

Step 6: Receive Final inspection, and signed off permit

Call Planning and Building Services with the permit number that was issued to demolish the structure and schedule a final inspection, according to the inspection days:

Ukiah, Hopland, Talmage- Monday through Friday

Covelo- Thursday only

Anderson Valley area- Monday or Wednesday

Mendocino County Planning and Building Services (707) 234-6650

860 N. Bush St. Ukiah, CA 95482

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AV FIRE CHIEF ANDRES AVILA took justified umbrage at a remark by a local critical of the recent fire response to the blaze on the Carsey property behind Lauren's Restaurant. The critic said he'd seen someone he assumed to be a firefighter fumbling to get the Fairgrounds hydrant going, fumbling that seemed to delay the effort to extinguish the fire. The Chief said the bumbler, armed with the wrong wrench (an ordinary monkeywrench), was from the Fairgrounds; he was not an AV Firefighter. The AV Volunteers arrived as this man, not identified, was using the wrong wrench to try to open the hydrant. Frefighters Clay Eubanks and Eddie Pardini soon had the hydrant open with the correct five-point wrench they carry on their engines, and the water soon flowed.

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Meat choices: carnitas, asada, cabeza, lengua, pastor

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From Supervisor Ted Williams’ Supervisor Report last Tuesday:

Williams: “In reviewing some chronologies of clients while sitting on the board of West Company last year it became apparent that [Mendo’s] business licensing process is an impediment for new businesses, especially small businesses. Lake County does not require business licenses in instances where we do. For body piercing or selling Christmas trees or food handling they do. They have pinpointed specific business cases where there may be protection to the public by having a business license process. But say hypothetically that Supervisor at McCowen in his retirement decides to write his memoirs. He does it from a coffee shop or sitting in the audience here in the board chambers. Maybe he edits a little bit at home. He has to get a business license because he's not an outlaw, he wants to be compliant. He pays $40, not a problem, that's not a business impediment. But he also pays $339 to planning and building. Why planning and building? They want to check that his office is in compliance. He says I don't have an office, I write in coffee shops and wherever I am and I bring a notepad. No, we are going to use his primary residence as his business location because he doesn't need office space. They are going to review to see if he has any code violations in his home even though he is not bringing the public in and he has no employees. This process can take weeks, sometimes months, sometimes many months. Mendocino County says that 82% of the businesses are small businesses and we have a business friendly climate. Lake County has that business friendly climate, where if you live in Lake County and you want to write a book, you don't need a business license. You are a watercolor artist and you want to sell your artwork, you don't need a business license. They presume these types of businesses are operating legally. Whereas it appears we have gone overboard and are actually harming the incubation of new small businesses in our county. I think we do need some business licenses, but I think we can model our approach after Lake County. Their program seems to be successful. They have found a balance between protecting the public and encouraging business development. So I would like staff to look at Lake County as a model and determine what types of businesses need to be licensed in our county to protect the public.”

After some discussion the board agreed to have staff review the business license program and come back to the board in a few weeks with some recommendations.

Williams then addressed the County’s ambulance shortage problem.

“I have been tracking the ambulance situation and I think it has deteriorated. It's not a matter of coming up with creative solutions at this point. You can't blame any of the parties. Coastal Valley EMS does not have the job of coming up with ambulance service or coming up with the funding. The city of Ukiah was key in discarding the Exclusive Operating Area (EOA) and I guess I thank them for that because we could have been putting effort into a direction that wasn't taking us anywhere. But it has left us in a position where private ambulance companies don't want to do business in this county because there isn't money on the table. They tell us that as many as two out of three of the calls are not profitable. It's no wonder they didn't participate in the EOA. They are down-staffing ambulances. A funding source is missing. The county needs to commit funds which the county has done in past decades or we need to tell the public that we are not taking on this task and so you choose to live in a rural area where you may not get an ambulance. We are in a precarious situation now where we are not taking a stance and we are not formulating a plan. I know we have an ad hoc committee looking at this. But without funding there is nothing that can be done. This may be national or state policy falling down so the reimbursement rates are simply too low for 911 transport. I have heard about transporting 5150s and other mental health patients not using an ambulance — that's great, it would cut down on the use of the ambulance. But it also cuts down on revenue for the ambulance company. So I don't know if that in and of itself is a solution. It does not address the bottom line that when somebody calls 911 they get to the hospital, and that provider may lose money on the transport.”

Williams also mentioned the financial problems with Labor and Delivery opertions at Coast Hospital.

“The labor and delivery unit at Coast Hospital will likely close. A year ago they were talking about only 100 births and it takes about one a day in my understanding to be financially viable. In the last 12 months they were down to 50. It's about a $2 million loss I am told. We want to have a viable story for new families on the coast and in the Fifth District, but we have a problem with the demographics. We have an aging population and not a lot of people to serve that aging population. Taking away labor and delivery is not an incentive for families to move to our area or stay. I am closely tracking it, I don't have a solution. It's another example where money is the sole problem. The Adventists will likely be assuming operation of that hospital. It will go to the ballot in March. It is not a sure thing. It's not dependent on the voters passing it, it's dependent on the Adventists looking at the financials and deciding whether or not they can dig that hospital out of its current financial hole. It has deteriorated since they first expressed interest to the tune of millions. The last month of financials that I've seen there was a $700-$800,000 loss. If you annualize that it's not sustainable.”

Next up: The Winter Shelter on the Coast with a Hospital angle.

Williams: “The winter shelter was hard to pull off this year. We had a community partner that came through in the end and I appreciate that we had unanimous board support to fund the winter shelter and staff was able to pay much of the $66,000 up front which made a difference to the community partner which did not have liquid assets. I think they were willing to do it but they didn't seem particularly eager. The Hospital District, assuming they won't be running a hospital come March may be willing to take on that effort for the following year. I think we should have the county try to work with the hospital district on maybe a new approach, additional help, an additional partner in the mix. I would like supervisor Gjerde to have a chance to respond to this because the hospital and the shelter are in his district; some of the homeless that are served are in my district and it is a countywide issue. I would like to give weight to his preference because the facilities are in his district.”

Gjerde: “Maybe at the next convenient opportunity the EMS services ad hoc could bring forward some recommendations because part of our role as supervisors is to identify problems, it's also part of our role to identify solutions. It would be helpful if as an ad hoc we could work with stakeholders and bring forward recommended solutions.”

Williams: “Supervisor McCowen and I have not had a chance to align and bring a unified message back. The problem is money. Either it will be a new tax or general fund. If it's a new tax, the only new tax that appears viable is a sales tax. But the cities came back and said they are not in favor of that because they have limited funding channels and we are approaching a sales tax ceiling with other needs. I don't dispute any of that, but if we don't do a sales tax we are looking at general fund. The time to bring this up may be our budgeting process. We need to be careful about spending. I know we have a balanced budget now in theory, but if you add in these new fire department inspections and supporting an ambulance and a new jail wing that may need $1.7 million in staffing and the list goes on… we have some financial woes coming up.”

Board Chair John Haschak: “We can't move forward as a board because it's in the ad hoc so it would be good to bring something forward so we can discuss it as a board. I think we should bring something from the ad hoc, even if it's an agenda item to discuss for possible action.

Williams: “Next meeting.”

Haschak: “We will do it as soon as possible.”

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by Katey Rusch & Edward Booth

A Mendocino County correctional sergeant tased a handcuffed, mentally-ill jail inmate in 2017 who witnesses said was not a threat at the time, causing the man to stop breathing.

The sergeant didn’t lose his job and wasn’t charged with a crime, according to records released under the state’s new law-enforcement transparency law.

Instead, Zohar Zaied cut a deal with the Sheriff’s Office to accept a demotion to correctional deputy, documents show. The inmate, Travis Benevich, whose lawyer said almost died in the attack, accepted a settlement of $180,000 from the county instead of suing.

Three deputies who helped Zaied move Benevich to a padded cell on June 18, 2017 told investigators the inmate’s behavior didn’t warrant the tasing. Benevich, they said, resisted when approaching the cell he was being placed in, but wasn’t being violent.

One of the foremost experts in Taser litigation, Steve Martin, said of the incident, “of course, it’s disturbing.” The former counsel for the Texas Department of Corrections questioned the necessity of “such a high risk” use of force since Benevich was handcuffed behind his back and being escorted by guards.

The release of documents about Zaied’s use of force comes in a year of increased scrutiny of California law enforcement under the new law, Senate Bill 1421, which ended years of police secrecy about discipline and use of force. Records released by other agencies show jail guards fired for abusing inmates, and helping others cover up abuses.

“Hopefully there is some measure of accountability because the public knows what’s happening. That matters,” said Izaak Schwaiger, Benevich’s attorney.

The use of Tasers, especially in correctional facilities, has long been disputed by experts.

“There’s ways to de-escalate a situation without pulling out a Taser,” said Corene Kendrick, a staff attorney at the Prison Law Office in Berkeley.

Martin, who is currently the federal monitor of New York City’s Rikers Island, said the problem is people, not Tasers.

“(Tasers) can have a great deal of tactical utility when employed under strict conditions and limitations,” Martin said. The problem isn’t the Tasers themselves, he said, but misuse by law enforcement officers.

Benevich was arrested after a fight broke out at a music festival in Boonville on June 17, 2017. The 27-year-old says he was protecting his fiancé from a group of rowdy men when deputies arrested him for public intoxication and resisting arrest. He was taken to the Mendocino County Jail and, he says, he immediately felt panicked.

“I was just completely overwhelmed with how scared my kids must have been. What they must have been thinking,” said Benevich, who has an anxiety disorder.

Almost immediately Benevich asked Zaied, the jail supervisor at the time, to place him in a larger cell because small spaces increase his anxiety. He didn’t want to be in jail over the Father’s Day weekend and transcripts of jail audio show Benevich was adamant, he was “going to smash his head open to get the out of this room.”

Zaied opted to move Benevich to a padded cell. Benevich was handcuffed with two deputies each holding one of his arms. All involved agree this part went smoothly until Benevich saw the small cell he was being transferred to. Benevich estimated the cell was “one-third the size” of the one he’d just left.

Benevich dug his heels into the ground and begged not to be put in the smaller cell, deputies told investigators. At some point, Benevich pulled to one side, and the guards pushed him into a wall. Then, Zaied tased him without warning. “I wasn’t even fighting you guys,” said Benevich while crying, according to a recording.

In an interview with reporters, Benevich said, “I remember my head hitting the wall. It’s a pain that is in every bone and muscle.”

Guards then put Benevich in the cell, where he fell to his knees. Forty-seconds after the first shock, Zaied tased him again. Benevich stopped breathing and went into a seizure while mucus dripped from his nose. He was rushed to a hospital.

“I don’t think decided to put him into renal failure and put him into a seizure. But he decided to use force, not knowing enough information to know if it was safe,” said Schwaiger, Benevich’s attorney.

Zaied did not return calls for comment. But documents show he told internal affairs investigators Benevich was fighting deputies and that he tased him because the inmate was “in danger.” He continued, “Staff was in danger…it went from controlled to uncontrolled pretty fast.”

But the other deputies, including the two holding his arms, told investigators a different story. All thought the use of the Taser was unnecessary, documents show. A nurse who was present also described the tasing as excessive.

“It could have been avoided due to the fact that, you know, the four of us could have probably gained control,” Deputy Issac Sanchez told Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department investigators who did an independent investigation at the request of Mendocino County.

Zaied was eventually found to have violated several department and county policies, including using a Taser on a handcuffed inmate, according to findings by Mendocino County Undersheriff Randy Johnson. He recommended Zaied be demoted, but Zaied fought the findings, and through a settlement agreement, was able to remove some of the policy violations from his record. But his demotion to correctional deputy remained. Zaied now works as a background investigator for new hires at the jail, according to an online bio.

The day before he tased Benevich, Zaied had tased another inmate who was also handcuffed and described in documents as mentally ill. Fernando Martinez, a war veteren diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, was being put back into a padded cell when the incident occurred.

Zaied said use of force was necessary with Martinez, and that using the Taser minimized the risk of injury for everyone there, according to the report. Martinez told investigators he was “pretty out of it” and that he may have “tensed up.”

At the time of both tasings, records show Zaied’s taser certification had expired more than 10 years earlier. He completed Taser training in 2006. It expired in 2007.

Former Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman, who recently retired, did not return requests for comment on the training or the incident. But in the final Letter of Reprimand he concluded that during the Benevich incident, while Zaied’s “intent was not malicious, failed to appreciate other options available to prior to the discharge of the Taser.”

Despite the demotion, Zaied’s salary remained roughly the same. According to an online website that tracks state salaries, Transparent California, he made roughly $149,000 in total pay and benefits in 2018 compared to about $142,000 in 2017.

The spokesperson for the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office, Mike Geniella, said District Attorney David Eyster planned to file criminal charges on Zaied, but changed his mind after the case was reviewed by an outside use of force expert who found no wrongdoing.

A consultant who did the investigation, Jeffery Martin, concluded that Zaied’s actions were reasonable.

In his report, Jeffrey Martin wrote that there is nothing to indicate that the Taser or actions of Zaied or the deputies contributed to Benevich’s medical event. Martin argued that Benevich appeared to have “perceived the pain during the event,” and that he was given sufficient time to comply with commands. Martin also wrote that Benevich actively tried to hook one of the deputy’s legs, which could have caused deputies to lose control of him.

Schwaiger, Benevich’s lawyer, who specializes in police brutality cases, disputes this account, saying there was no provocation, making the tasing particularly egregious. Schwaiger suspects that is part of the reason the county was quick to settle, offering an agreement even before a lawsuit was filed.

In exchange for $180,000, Benevich agreed to release the county of all liability and agreed to a confidentiality clause: Benevich couldn’t talk about the settlement.

“Of course, they didn’t want it to be public record,” said Schwaiger. “The only thing that municipalities hate worse than paying money is bad press.”

For two years, the incident remained secret. Schwaiger says that the incident between Benevich and Zaied is exactly what the new transparency law was designed to reveal. However, he worries the onslaught of news stories that have followed the passage of the law detract from the seriousness of each individual case.

This story was produced as part of the California Reporting Project, a collaboration of 40 newsrooms across the state to obtain and report on police misconduct and serious use-of-force records unsealed in 2019.

(Courtesy, The California Reporting Project - Bay Area)

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Noyo Harbor, Fort Bragg

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The Mendocino Coast District Hospital invites all interested patients, family members, and caregivers to attend the first PFAC informational meeting on Tuesday, January 14, 2020, at 4:00 PM in the Redwoods Room at the Hospital. If you would like to help enhance the health care experience at MCDH for yourself, your family, and others, becoming a member of PFAC could be the first step.

Patient and Family Advisory Council is a formal group that meets monthly for active collaboration between clinicians, hospital staff, and patients, family, and caregivers to gain a greater understanding of the hospital experience through the eyes of the patient and family members. The ultimate goal is to improve the patient experience, hospital quality, and patient safety. PFAC members provide recommendations and guidance that aim to build a successful partnership and strengthen the collaboration between the Hospital and its patients and families.

We look forward to meeting with you on January 14, 2020, to share this opportunity and to talk about how your involvement can make a difference in our community.

For More Information Contact: Michelle Norvell at 707 961-4663 or

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THE WRECK OF THE 51, 52 & 54

Did you know? In 1970 three train engines wrecked on the California Western Railroad Line west of Willits. The bell from Engine #54, pictured here, was salvaged and is currently on display in the "Dusty Whitney, A Collectors Journey" area of the Museum.

(Mendocino County Museum)

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Good Morning,

Please review the article below that appeared in the Los Angeles Times this morning.

This change in fiscal leveraging could have a significant impact on the way in which counties like ours have been able to leverage the opportunities in the ACA and county share of cost to support the Adult System of Care for all adults experiencing a Significant Mental Health Disorder. Political voices from rural communities are important voices for our Governor and Legislators to hear from.

Additionally, in the previous information sent to you this week I am not sure it reflected the growth of the Adult System of Care since 2016. On July 1, 2016, 302 active adult beneficiaries were transferred to RQMC. In Fiscal Year 2018/2019 the RQMC Adult System of Care served 1518 unduplicated adult beneficiaries. The Children's System of Care has remained steady.

Camille Schraeder, M.A.

Chief Program Officer

Redwood Quality Management Company

Office: (707) 462-2501

“We can do no great things, only small things with GREAT love.”

–Mother Teresa

John Sakowicz notes:

Oh, by the way, Camille Schreader launched her business the same year that the Clinton's Adoptions and Safe Families Act (ASFA) was made law. Title IV-E funding was diverted from Family Preservation to Adoptions. Families took a big hit. Two years ago Trump reversed most the incentive for trafficking children through the foster care system by passing his "Family First Services Act". The law really put a hurt on Camille's group homes as well, kids can no longer be warehoused in them anymore, due to statutory 6 month time limits.

"On February 9, 2018, President Trump signed into law the landmark bipartisan Family First Prevention Services Act, as part of Division E in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (H.R. 1892). Family First includes long-overdue historic reforms to help keep children safely with their families and avoid the traumatic experience of entering foster care, emphasizes the importance of children growing up in families and helps ensure children are placed in the least restrictive, most family-like setting appropriate to their special needs when foster care is needed."

It scares the living bejesus out of me to know that the Schareders are now responsible for providing the services for the families in order to keep them together.

“I’m ambivalent about kids being with their families at all costs,” Camille Schraeder said at a BOS meeting. “In theory, that’s a beautiful thought…if we do really great, help the whole family, then that’s OK, but if we just say, ‘you are better with your family,’ are they better off?”

Most the money is going to the children's system of care which Camille Schreader has been building for 23 years. In the new contract the Schreaders combined adult and children funding for them to spend anyway they want. Camille Schreader's expertise is chasing money for the children's system of care. She has numerous funding sources besides the County. Adult services are a laugh, she doesn't care, she can sell their children through her adoption agency, and receive foster care money for the kids until she can find a buyer. A very complex situation.

RCS: Two decades of helping children in Mendocino County

Twenty years ago this month, Redwood Children’s Services placed its first foster child with a foster family. Camille Schraeder, the executive director and founder of what she expected to be “just a little foster family agency,” had just received her license on April 22, after taking out a line of credit on her new house to lease office equipment.

Camille Schraeder had just left Trinity School, a facility for troubled youth under the Southern California parent company Guadalupe Homes. Trinity was based on a corporate model that left her reluctant to invest large sums of money in machinery when children were in need. She wanted to provide a more therapeutic environment for young people who were displaying “what we know today as trauma behaviors.”

I'm still upset that the Adult Contract never went out to bid, handing it over to the Schraeders with absolutely no background with working with mentally ill adults.

John Sakowicz


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This Saturday we will be having an award ceremony for Lifeguard Ean Miller who will be receiving the United States Lifeguard Association – Medal of Valor. The event will be at the Russian Gulch Recreation Hall from 5:00 - 7:00 pm. Please RSVP if you are planning to attend the event.

Hope to see you there.


Loren M. Rex
Chief Ranger - Sonoma-Mendocino Coast District, 12301 North Hwy 1, Mendocino, CA 95460
(707) 961-0471 (707) 961-1287 fax

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Petit Teton is growing beautiful and tasty turmeric and ginger in its aquaponic system and the harvest is coming in. We are selling ginger fresh and turmeric fresh or dried. We also have pork, beef and squab for sale as well as fresh kimchi and kraut and our array of preserved foods.

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The Yorkville Olive Ranch is offering a discount on the remaining 2017 Tuscan Field Blend olive oil to make room for the 2019 oil that has just been milled. The discount prices are $ 10 for the 750m ml bottle and $ 20.00 for a gallon. Those buying a gallon or more will need to provide their own container(s). The oil can be picked up at the Ranch, 23401 Hwy. 128 in Yorkville, mile marker 38.29. Call or e-mail to make an appointment or get more information. Tel. (707) 894-0530

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This Sunday:

This month’s gathering "Disaster Preparedness and Emergencies!" on Sunday January 12th 4 to 5:30 pm at Lauren's will look at the power outage, the impact and how we the Village/ our community can better navigate it and look after each other. Refreshment provided. We are always looking for people to bring finger food, if you would like to bring food to this gathering let us know — thank you!

We also have a volunteer training Sunday January 12th 3 to 4 pm (right before our monthly gathering) at Lauren’s – we ask each new volunteer to complete this short training; please RSVP with our coordinator (contact info below) if you can attend. Thank you!

In the Near Future:

New Coffee with the AV Village Coordinator: Our first one will be Thursday January 23^rd 10:15 to 11 am at the Mosswood Market in Boonville. Come down for an informal chat with Anica (the AV Village coordinator) and other AV Village members, volunteers and supporters. Ask questions, share concerns, share ideas for improving our Village/ community, visit with your neighbors, etc. I plan on holding these every 4th Thursday through May.

Book conversation: Our next one will be Wednesday January 29th at 11:00am at Lauren’s. The current book is still “Enlightenment Now - The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress” by Steven Pinker. We are now covering chapters 10-12. Contact Lauren for questions

Cultural Outing with Mary O’Brien: Join Mary for the Symphony of the Redwoods Winter Concert on Sunday February 2nd at 2 pm, Cotton Auditorium in Fort Bragg: Resounding Firsts, Allan Pollack, conductor - Guest Artist: James D'Leon, piano. Contact Mary about carpooling: or cell 707-367-9728.

See these AV Village and other local events listed on the Events Calendar on our website:

All the best,

Anica Williams

Anderson Valley Village Coordinator

Cell: 707-684-9829


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CATCH OF THE DAY, January 9, 2020

Alvarez, Anderson, Caldwell

JOEL ALVAREZ, Ukiah. DUI-alcohol&drugs, suspended license (for DUI), probation revocation.

KRISTOPHER ANDERSON, Fort Bragg. Domestic battery, false imprisonment.

BRITTANY CALDWELL, Los Angeles/Ukiah. Under influence.

Daniele, Hanover, Hluchy, Johnson

ANDREW DANIELE, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

THOMAS HANOVER, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol. (Frequent flyer.)

DENISE HLUCHY, Laytonville. Disobeying court order.

ANDREW JOHNSON, Tulare/Ukiah. Failure to appear.

Martinez, Smith, Spinardi, Tolbert

LIVIER MARTINEZ, Geyeserville/Ukiah. Probation revocation.

AGUSTUS SMITH, Ukiah. Shoplifting with larcenous intent, disorderly conduct-alcohol.

JOHN SPINARDI, Ukiah. Domestic battery, attempted car theft, petty theft, controlled substance, paraphernalia, probation revocation.

ANTHONY TOLBERT, Laytonville. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

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January 11: Gallery Reception & Open Studios

Join the Mendocino Art Center for our

Saturday, January 11, 5pm-8pm/ Free admission

Enjoy snacks and wine, view the Members' Juried Exhibit, listen to the classical guitar sounds of Sergei Bassehes, and visit MAC's Artists in Residence as they open up their studios. And, Professional Artist in Retreat Alyssa Sineni will give a presentation in her studio at 6pm. On exhibit January 10 through February 5, 11am-4pm daily

Members Juried Exhibit

Every January, the Mendocino Art Center celebrates the creativity of its member artists with the all-media Members' Juried Exhibit. A highly competitive juried selection process leads to an exceptionally creative, high quality, and much anticipated gallery showing with a wide spectrum of artwork, including paintings, sculpture, fiber arts, jewelry, photography, mixed media works and more. Mendocino Coast artists Erika Kohr Island, Janis Porter and Rebecca Wallace juried this year's exhibit.

More information:

Mendocino Art Center

45200 Little Lake Street at Kasten Street, Mendocino


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"THE PRETEXT FOR WASHINGTON’S TERRORIST WARS was self-defense, the standard official justification for just about any monstrous act, even the Nazi Holocaust."

—Noam Chomsky (1999)

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IRAQI PRIME MINISTER REVEALS Soleiman was on peace mission when assassinated, exploding Trump’s lie of ‘imminent attacks.’

The Trump administration claimed Iranian general Qasem Soleimani was planning “imminent attacks” on US interests when it assassinated him. That lie was just destroyed, but not before countless corporate media outlets transmitted it to the public.

* * *

“I can’t wait until the country is bitterly polarized around political issues again instead of around ‘Star Wars’ movies.”

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RICKY GERVAIS’s MONOLOGUE at the Golden Globe Awards

Hello and welcome to the 77th annual Golden Globe Awards, live from the Beverly Hilton Hotel here in Los Angeles. I'm Ricky Gervais, thank you.

You'll be pleased to know this is the last time I'm hosting these awards, so I don't care anymore. I'm joking. I never did. I'm joking, I never did. NBC clearly don't care either — fifth time. I mean, Kevin Hart was fired from the Oscars for some offensive tweets — hello?

Lucky for me, the Hollywood Foreign Press can barely speak English and they've no idea what Twitter is, so I got offered this gig by fax. Let's go out with a bang, let's have a laugh at your expense. Remember, they're just jokes. We're all gonna die soon and there's no sequel, so remember that.

But you all look lovely all dolled up. You came here in your limos. I came here in a limo tonight and the license plate was made by Felicity Huffman. No, shush. It's her daughter I feel sorry for. OK? That must be the most embarrassing thing that's ever happened to her. And her dad was in Wild Hogs.

Lots of big celebrities here tonight. Legends. Icons. This table alone — Al Pacino, Robert DeNiro … Baby Yoda. Oh, that's Joe Pesci, sorry. I love you man. Don't have me whacked. But tonight isn't just about the people in front of the camera. In this room are some of the most important TV and film executives in the world. People from every background. They all have one thing in common: They're all terrified of Ronan Farrow. He's coming for ya. Talking of all you perverts, it was a big year for pedophile movies. Surviving R. Kelly, Leaving Neverland, Two Popes. Shut up. Shut up. I don't care. I don't care.

Many talented people of color were snubbed in major categories. Unfortunately, there's nothing we can do about that. Hollywood Foreign Press are all very racist. Fifth time. So. We were going to do an In Memoriam this year, but when I saw the list of people who died, it wasn't diverse enough. No, it was mostly white people and I thought, nah, not on my watch. Maybe next year. Let's see what happens.

No one cares about movies anymore. No one goes to cinema, no one really watches network TV.

Everyone is watching Netflix. This show should just be me coming out, going, "Well done Netflix. You win everything. Good night." But no, we got to drag it out for three hours. You could binge-watch the entire first season of “Afterlife” instead of watching this show. That's a show about a man who wants to kill himself 'cause his wife dies of cancer and it's still more fun than this. Spoiler alert, season two is on the way so in the end he obviously didn't kill himself. Just like Jeffrey Epstein. Shut up. I know he's your friend but I don't care.

Seriously, most films are awful. Lazy. Remakes, sequels. I've heard a rumor there might be a sequel to “Sophie's Choice.” I mean, that would just be Meryl just going, "Well, it's gotta be this one then." All the best actors have jumped to Netflix, HBO. And the actors who just do Hollywood movies now do fantasy-adventure nonsense. They wear masks and capes and really tight costumes. Their job isn't acting anymore. It's going to the gym twice a day and taking steroids, really. Have we got an award for most ripped junky? No point, we'd know who'd win that.

Martin Scorsese made the news for his controversial comments about the Marvel franchise. He said they're not real cinema and they remind him about theme parks. I agree. Although I don't know what he's doing hanging around theme parks. He's not big enough to go on the rides. He's tiny. “The Irishman” was amazing. It was amazing. It was great. Long, but amazing. It wasn't the only epic movie. “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” nearly three hours long. Leonardo DiCaprio attended the premiere and by the end his date was too old for him. Even Prince Andrew was like, "Come on, Leo, mate.You're nearly 50-something."

The world got to see James Corden as a fat pussy. He was also in the movie Cats. No one saw that movie. And the reviews, shocking. I saw one that said, "This is the worst thing to happen to cats since dogs." But Dame Judi Dench defended the film saying it was the film she was born to play because she loves nothing better than plunking herself down on the carpet, lifting her leg and licking her ass. (Coughs.) Hairball. She's old-school.

It's the last time, who cares? Apple roared into the TV game with “The Morning Show,” a superb drama about the importance of dignity and doing the right thing, made by a company that runs sweatshops in China. Well, you say you're woke but the companies you work for in China — unbelievable. Apple, Amazon, Disney. If ISIS started a streaming service you'd call your agent, wouldn't you?

So if you do win an award tonight, don't use it as a platform to make a political speech. You're in no position to lecture the public about anything. You know nothing about the real world. Most of you spent less time in school than Greta Thunberg.

So if you win, come up, accept your little award, thank your agent, and your God and fuck off, OK? It's already three hours long. Right, let's do the first award.

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* * *

WAR WITH IRAN IS AT STAKE -- and Democrats’ High Jumps Over Low Standards Aren’t Helping

by Norman Solomon

Bowing down to the military-industrial complex…

The huge crisis with Iran is more dangerous because so many Democrats have been talking out of both sides of their congressional mouths.

An example is the recent rhetoric from Sen. Chris Murphy. “The attack on our embassy in Baghdad is horrifying but predictable,” he tweeted on the last day of 2019. “Trump has rendered America impotent in the Middle East. No one fears us, no one listens to us. America has been reduced to huddling in safe rooms, hoping the bad guys will go away. What a disgrace.”

Fast forward one week: Murphy was on the Senate floor declaring “we can choose to get off of this path of escalation and make decisions that correct this president’s recklessness and keep Americans safe.”

On the same day, in Murphy’s home state, the Connecticut Mirror reported that he “has emerged as a leading critic of Trump administration hostility to Iran” and called him “the most vocal” Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee “in criticizing President Donald Trump’s decision to kill Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in a drone strike.”

It’s a partisan pattern that’s all too common among Democrats on Capitol Hill -- goading Trump as a wimp and then bemoaning his aggressive actions. And so, in a matter of days, Murphy was decrying the “recklessness” of the same president he’d alleged “has rendered America impotent in the Middle East” because “no one fears us.”

Murphy is one of the better senators on foreign policy -- and that’s a key point here. He still couldn’t resist baiting Trump in a way that implicitly scorned him for failure to use enough military violence.

At a time like this, the spirit of Wayne Morse is badly needed. During his 24-year career representing Oregon in the Senate, he rose to prominence as a rigorously consistent defender of international law as well as the U.S. Constitution. An unwavering foe of might-makes-right foreign policy, he unequivocally opposed the Vietnam War from the outset.

Morse never backed down. And he refused to play along with questions based on false premises, as network TV footage makes clear. During his appearance on the CBS program “Face the Nation” in May 1964, fireworks began a split second after moderator Peter Lisagor said: “Senator, the Constitution gives to the president of the United States the sole responsibility for the conduct of foreign policy.”

“Couldn’t be more wrong,” Morse shot back. “You couldn’t make a more unsound legal statement than the one you have just made. This is the promulgation of an old fallacy that foreign policy belongs to the president of the United States. That’s nonsense.”

Lisagor sounded a bit exasperated: “To whom does it belong then, senator?”

Morse didn’t hesitate. “It belongs to the American people,” the senator fired back. And he added: “What I’m saying is -- under our Constitution all the president is, is the administrator of the people’s foreign policy, those are his prerogatives, and I’m pleading that the American people be given the facts about foreign policy --”

“You know, senator, that the American people cannot formulate and execute foreign policy --”

“Why do you say that? Why, you’re a man of little faith in democracy if you make that kind of comment,” Morse retorted. “I have complete faith in the ability of the American people to follow the facts if you’ll give them. And my charge against my government is we’re not giving the American people the facts.”

Three months later, Morse was one of only two senators to vote against the Tonkin Gulf Resolution that opened the floodgates to the mass carnage of the Vietnam War.

When President Lyndon Johnson’s iconic adviser Gen. Maxwell Taylor -- a former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and ex-ambassador to South Vietnam -- appeared before the Foreign Relations Committee on February 17, 1966, this exchange (preserved on video) ensued:

SEN. MORSE: “We’re engaged in a historic debate in this country, we have honest differences of opinion. I happen to hold to the point of view that it isn’t going to be too long before the American people as a people will repudiate our war in Southeast Asia.”

GEN. TAYLOR: “That of course is good news to Hanoi, senator.”

SEN. MORSE: “Oh I know that that’s the smear artists that your militarists give to those of us who have honest differences of opinion with you, but I don’t intend to get down in the gutter with you and engage in that kind of debate, general. I’m simply saying that in my judgment the president of the United States is already losing the people of this country by the millions in connection with this war in Southeast Asia. And all I’m asking is -- if the people decide that this war should be stopped in Southeast Asia, are you going to take the position that’s a weakness on the home front in a democracy?”

GEN. TAYLOR: “I would feel that our people were badly misguided and did not understand the consequences of such a disaster.”

SEN. MORSE: “Well, we agree on one thing, that they can be badly misguided -- and you and the president, in my judgment, have been misguiding them for a long time in this war.”

Much has changed during the last five decades, but deception remains central to the state of perpetual war that funnels mega-billions in profits to the military-industrial complex. The vast majority of Congress members are part of that complex, including most Democrats. Instead of thanking those members of Congress for not being worse, progressive constituents should organize to insist that they quickly become much better -- or face escalating protests as well as political consequences.

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  1. Craig Stehr January 10, 2020

    Great compliments on the R. Crumb cartoon in yesterday’s AVA online, featuring Mr. Natural and Flakey Foont. What is really collectible is that it’s the drawing with the word “completely” incorrectly spelled. It appeared on the cover of the underground newspaper Seed published in Chicago (Volume 9, No.2) November 13-31, not certain which year, mid-late 60s, couldn’t tell by the cover found online. Anyway, the spelling error was noticed by the artist after publication, and in later drawings was corrected. Here’s the link:

  2. Eric Sunswheat January 10, 2020

    RE: At the time of both tasings, records show Zaied’s taser certification had expired more than 10 years earlier. He completed Taser training in 2006. It expired in 2007.

    Former Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman, who recently retired, did not return requests for comment on the training or the incident. But in the final Letter of Reprimand he concluded that during the Benevich incident, while Zaied’s “intent was not malicious, failed to appreciate other options available to prior to the discharge of the Taser.”

    Despite the demotion, Zaied’s salary remained roughly the same. According to an online website that tracks state salaries, Transparent California, he made roughly $149,000 in total pay and benefits in 2018 compared to about $142,000 in 2017.

    The spokesperson for the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office, Mike Geniella, said District Attorney David Eyster planned to file criminal charges on Zaied, but changed his mind after the case was reviewed by an outside use of force expert who found no wrongdoing.

    ——->. It’s good to know the AVA is reporting the facts, with then out of control Allman – Eyster joined-at-the-hip cabal broken up, now with an information disclosure law and upstart new Sheriff in town.

  3. Bob Abeles January 10, 2020

    Found object: The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and I can’t think of one funny thing write about it.

    • Lazarus January 10, 2020

      Found Object

      I agree.


  4. James Marmon January 10, 2020


    If Mendocino County decides to declare homelessness as an emergency, and opens an emergency shelter or emergency shelters, Angelo would need to find someone else to run them. Camille Schraeder will be much too expensive as an operator and it would only add to the stranglehold she already has on the County.

    “my way, or the highway”

    “Pay up, or I’ll walk out and make Angelo look like the fool for her stupid decision to privatize mental health in the first place”

    -Camille Schraeder (paraphrase)

    Monopoly anyone?

    James Marmon MSW

  5. James Marmon January 10, 2020


    I think the Measure B committee should pump the brakes on their lightning speed response in fixing Mendo’s Mental Health system until they see what other money may be made available for those services. Furthermore, shouldn’t the BoS want to know more about how current mental health funding is being used for services and the service’s effectiveness. Their little reviews, what they call audits, don’t measure effectiveness.

    L.A. city, county and Trump administration in talks to help the homeless

    “We’re asking for anything that can help us solve this homelessness problem,” Bell said. “Mental health treatment has to be a top ingredient in the mix, in addition to other supportive services, including job training and veteran outreach.”

    Trump on Monday tweeted if “the city or state in question is willing to acknowledge responsibility, and politely asks for help from the Federal Government, we will very seriously consider getting involved in order to make those poorly run Democrat Cities Great Again!”

  6. chuck dunbar January 10, 2020

    Senator Wayne Morse, the kind of principled, honest and courageous senator we so need in these times…

    • Bruce Anderson January 10, 2020

      Yep. For years there was Morse of Oregon, Gruening of Alaska, the lonely no votes on the War On Vietnam.

  7. Harvey Reading January 10, 2020

    Still no word on when our war-criminal dufus of a president will be indicted for war crimes?

  8. John Sakowicz January 10, 2020

    Thank you, James Marmon, for your thoughtful insights.

    If elected as 1st District Supervisor, I would support your application for renewed county employment at HHSA.

    The BOS needs an “expert witness”, whom we can trust, on HHSA issues

    • Harvey Reading January 10, 2020

      If you’re running on a “Marmon platform”, you’re dumber than I guessed. Then again, it is Mendocino County.

  9. Jim Armstrong January 10, 2020

    If you skipped reading the link above to the Iraqi Prime Ministers remarks about Soleimani’s murder, do it now and pass it on. It is important.

  10. James Marmon January 10, 2020


    With the rest of the state declaring street homelessness an emergency and if other cities and counties submit to the governor’s order to open emergency shelters ASAP, Mendocino should prepare for more homeless folks migrating to our community seeking liberty. I hope Plowshares and Hospitality House can find enough food for everyone. Their little “winter shelters” ain’t going to get er done. Come one, Come all

    James Marmon MSW


    • James Marmon January 10, 2020


      “the state of being free within society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s way of life, behavior, or political views.”

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