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Mendocino County Today: Sunday, May 2, 2021

Spring Weather | Rainfall Totals | Disaster Recovery | Mendo Covid | Vaccination Events | Fort Bragg Water | Pet Potter | 17,000 Plants | Boonville Baseballers | Crime Report | Oddfellows Hall | Grewal Lawsuit | Open Mind | Spring Poetry | Ed Notes | Grape Spin | Yesterday's Catch | Economic Legerdemain | Point Miwok | Time & Eternity | Elbow Room | No Sense | National Disgrace | Nuclear Show | Uncle Joe | Best People | Free Shipping | Powermowing | AV Villagers | Marco Radio

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DRY WEATHER WITH BREEZY NORTHERLY WINDS will persist through Monday. Warmer interior temperatures are forecast for Monday through Wednesday, while coastal areas remain chilly with brisk winds each afternoon. A cold front will bring substantial interior cooling toward the latter portion of the work week. This weather system will also produce some showers for mainly the northern portion of the area Thursday through Friday. (NWS)

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No miracle April showers this year, the whole month managing only one drizzly morning (a week ago Sunday). Monthly figures for the 2020-21 wet season (Oct-Oct) thus far:

Boonville (16.5" total)

  • 0.1" Oct
  • 1.9" Nov
  • 3.5" Dec
  • 4.8" Jan
  • 2.5" Feb
  • 3.4" Mar
  • 0.3" Apr

Yorkville (21.3" total)

  • 0.0" Oct
  • 2.2" Nov
  • 5.4" Dec
  • 5.9" Jan
  • 3.3" Feb
  • 4.4" Mar
  • 0.2" Apr

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THE NUMBER OF MONTHLY COVID CASES for Mendocino County continues to dwindle.

Covid Cases/Deaths per Month:

  • 229 / 9 (Jul)
  • 392 / 8 (Aug)
  • 260 / 2 (Sep)
  • 210 / 2 (Oct)
  • 420 / 2 (Nov)
  • 964 / 4 (Dec)
  • 876 / 11 (Jan)
  • 382 / 5 (Feb)
  • 131 / 3 (Mar)
  •  82 / 2 (Apr)

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* * *


by Chris Calder

Taking the “sudden” out of the almost-certain water use restrictions to come this summer is part of the purpose of the water emergency ordinance the Fort Bragg City Council will consider at its meeting May 26, Fort Bragg City Manager Tabatha Miller said last week.

Fort Bragg already has an emergency ordinance, with a phased-in set of cutbacks tied to (Noyo) river flows that top out at a 30% reduction. Fort Bragg actually did that in 2015 when low river flows allowed salt water into the town's water system. City government imposed a heavy set of use restrictions that made statewide headlines for, among other things, requiring restaurants to stop washing dishes and only use paper plates and plastic utensils. 

The new ordinance, Miller said, adds a “catastrophic water emergency,” option that would require Fort Bragg to cut its water use in half.

“Obviously we hope it never happens,” Miller said, “but it might happen.”

The city council has been looking at its options for building defenses against a water emergency for the past several months, hearing reports at council meetings and in its Public Works subcommittee. The new reservoir built two years ago a few miles east of town has already proved a vital water supply cushion. It's always possible to build another reservoir, Miller added. But this is California. It's complicated.

Building another reservoir would likely trigger a new round of negotiations with the State Department of Fish and Wildlife, which has made it clear it already thinks Fort Bragg is taking at least its share of water from the Noyo River. State government has been pressuring the city for years to sign a series of “streambed alteration agreements” that would restrict the city's ability to take more water from the river. Pressure for those agreements increases every time Fort Bragg considers a major building project, Miller said.

In the meantime, city government is considering a range of options, from filtered shallow wells to desalinization. One of the more likely options, in Miller's view, is treating the city's wastewater so that it is clean enough to drink.

State government is also fully behind that option. From the State Water Resources Control Board's website:

“It is the intention of the Legislature that the state undertake all possible steps to encourage development of water recycling facilities so that recycled water may be made available to help meet the growing water requirements of the state.”

That option is squarely on the table in Fort Bragg. Miller noted that it's already being done in California and compares very favorably in cost to things like desalinization.

In the short run, Miller said, the city is topping off its reservoirs and water storage tanks and looking at making its Cedar Street storage towers (a new one was added there two years ago) deeper and taller.

In reality, there is not much Fort Bragg can do to drastically increase its water supply. Desalinization remains a distant dream, affordable by oil rich sheikhdoms, the US military, and practically no one else. The short-term is all about consumption, and in a few weeks the City Council will be looking at giving itself the power to require people and businesses in Fort Bragg to halve their water use. 

Like the Noyo River starting to drop in June, that's never happened before.

The Noyo always looks formidable at its mouth, but that is the ocean, not the river. Five miles upstream, a good athlete could jump across the Noyo in a dry September, when the stream is still keeping a community of 7,000, plus tourists, alive.

Last summer, the Noyo looked like a dry September creek in July. This past rainy season the “river” barely deserved the name. Just to the north of the Noyo, Pudding Creek has closed its mouth to the ocean, probably a month early. 

It's early May and it’s already a dry summer.

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Right off the bat we noticed how much more comfortable Potter is outside than in. When he went for a walk he was happy and confident. Once he came inside he was nervous and worried. Even inside when he was worried, Potter was quick to give a tail wag if he caught you looking at him! Potter is very sweet and appears friendly with other dogs and has a “chill” personality. And my my, is he ever gorgeous! Potter is a Shepherd mix, 6 years young and 67 pounds. Mr. P is eligible for the shelter’s SENIOR DOG DISCOUNT! 

Visit us at to see all of our canine and feline guests, our services, programs, events, and updates regarding covid-19, as it impacts Mendocino County Animal Shelters in Ukiah and Ft. Bragg. Visit us on Facebook at: For information about adoptions, please call 707-467-6453. 

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On April 29, 2021, wildlife officers with the California Department of Fish & Wildlife (CDFW) served search warrants at two locations in the area of Island Mountain. The first location consisted of three parcels (one owner), which straddled Mendocino and Trinity counties. The second location was a single parcel in Mendocino County.

Support was provided by CDFW Environmental Scientists, Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office and the State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board).

The search warrants were obtained as part of an investigation into illegal cannabis cultivation and environmental crimes. A thorough records check was conducted and none of the locations obtained the necessary county and state permits and state license to cultivate commercial cannabis.

Over 17,000 illegal cannabis plants were eradicated. Numerous environmental violations were documented by CDFW and the State Water Board, which included illegal diversion of surface water for cannabis irrigation, trash, debris and pollutants within 150 feet of waters of the state and unlawful deposition of substances into state waters, which are harmful to fish, plant life, mammals and birds.

Two subjects were detained. Formal complaints will be filed with the Mendocino County District Attorney’s office. No other information is available at this time.

Island Mountain Greenhouse (photo CDFW)

On line comments re Island Mountain bust:

(1) Yaaah. Get these illegals out of the triangle. Legal pot only. 17,000 plants would be at least over a thousand pounds, or almost a million dollars at harvest. Where did all the clones come from? 17,000 clones, at 10 bucks apiece, is how much money? $170,000? And the cloners do not wait for harvest, they get paid up front, where does someone get $170,000 to buy these clones, and where is the facility, an illegal one, a big one, and why don’t they bust these people also? Only legal cloners should be allowed. And the 170,000 for the clones, no taxes paid on it, tax free profit. keep busting these clowns. This had to be a cartel or mafia grow, glad it cost them so much, one good way to take them down. You support illegal grows, you are a bad person.

(2) 17,000 plants, big “white” greenhouses (maggots on the landscape), illegal water diversions, debris, trash, pollutants in close proximity to waterways impacting water quality with harm to wildlife, etc… Same write-up all the time. Throw in the use of illegal rodenticides, and human waste, along with the illegal grading of grow sites and roads, usually located in Oak woodlands and prairies and you have the full story. Environment and community being destroyed by punk scum growers. It’s getting weary, how much more can the wildlife and our community health take?

(3) Blah blah blah. Cry me a river….

Look at these grape fields. Smell that sulfer and toxic insecticides. Look how the Grapes fence out 800 acre patches, look how they fence out all the foxes, bears, deer, bobcats and mountain lions. Look at all those grape fields thousands and thousands of acres. This little grow with high numbers of plants is nothing compared to the grape fields all over Ukiah and Hopland Valleys. Let’s bring this into perspective; are we talking about dewatering of the Eel river, then let’s talk Van Arsdale and Lake Pillsbury. 80% of the headwaters of the Eel River is siphoned off to water those toxic earth destroying grape fields. Put the water back into the Eel river and stop acting like all the water is used by pot growers when in reality it is stolen by Sonoma County to water Grapes in So Mendo and Sonoma.

(4) Let’s be concerned about it ALL, folks.

Quit negating other people’s concerns with bigger shit-show for-instances. It all adds up.

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Boonville Baseball, 1910

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by Justine Frederiksen

Ukiah Police Chief Justin Wyatt said he observed many unsettling crime trends in 2020, but perhaps the most unsettling of all given the current statewide drought is that the number of arson fires his officers responded to [in Ukiah alone] in 2020 was up 136-percent.

“We had 52 separate cases of arson fires in 2020, and that’s unprecedented,” Wyatt told the Ukiah City Council earlier this month when presenting the UPD’s latest Annual Report. “We identified 12 different arson suspects that were arrested, and I want to thank the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority, because we needed their help quite a bit last summer, as you can imagine.

“There are some businesses that are still recovering from those arson fires,” Wyatt continued, adding that when fires were being started in the thick of fire season last year, “the call went out and we had law enforcement from every agency, including the chief of the Probation Department, looking for suspects, trying to slow these things down.”

Twelve different suspects, some who reportedly set multiple fires each, were arrested in connection with the 52 arson cases, and Wyatt said they were responsible for a “majority of the fires.”

Another unsettling aspect of 2020 he noted was the amount, and type, of drugs that officers encountered.

“We encountered more drugs, not just in quantity, and we used NARCAN (to resuscitate those suffering an opiate overdose) 18 times,” he said, describing that number as a 66-percent increase from 2019.

The annual report also notes that UPD officers “investigated six illegal marijuana grow sites in the city, seized more than 20 firearms, and made numerous drug seizures involving commercial amounts of methamphetamine, marijuana, and opiates.”

“What was also uncomfortable was we encountered more people that, because of a felony conviction, shouldn’t have firearms, but did, and some of these folks actually had body armor, as well, so that was kind of a new trend that we weren’t expecting,” Wyatt said, describing an incident that occurred in county jurisdiction last summer “around a marijuana robbery where law enforcement encountered three very well-armed individuals, and well-trained, as I understand it, and these people were also wearing body armor, so that’s disturbing.”

[AVA Note:]

For all of the eight crimes that the UPD reports to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (four violent crimes: rape, robbery, homicide, and assault; and four property crimes: burglary, theft, vehicle theft, and arson) “we show an increase of about 8 percent,” Wyatt said, describing violent crimes as up “across the board, 16-percent, actually.”

“Three of those four crimes — robbery, rape and homicide — were all down again this year, it was our assaults that rose, again,” he said, describing the 24-percent increase in assaults as responsible for the overall increase in violent crimes. “And we got 360 of those, so that’s a significant increase.”

He said that property crimes remained nearly flat, “only two more than last year, and burglaries and thefts were down this year, and I think that’s partially attributed to stores being closed at least part of the year. What we did have an increase in was vehicle thefts, a 41-percent increase with 48, and arsons were alarmingly up: a 136 percent increase in 2020.”

Wyatt also noted that staffing his department continues to be a problem, “so what that means for us is we focus our efforts on maintaining minimum staffing for patrol, so we can deliver our services.” But in the past year, “we successfully hired and trained three police officers.”

In terms of adapting to the Covid-19 pandemic, Wyatt said, “we started this year a little differently, like everybody else did, and had to modify our service delivery. The biggest thing we did to minimize personal contact with the pandemic was we converted whatever calls we could to over the phone. But we’re best in person, as problem solvers, so it was a bit of a learning curve for us to get used to handling calls over the phone, and it wasn’t perfect, but it got better over time.”

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Oddfellows Hall, Mendocino, 1894

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by Mark Scaramella

Mendocino County management is an ongoing disaster. The turnover in management positions has been alarmingly high for several years, beginning with the still unexplained firing of Deputy CEO Alan Flora in 2017, senior officials have left under other than normal circumstances. (Rumor has it that it had to do with a dispute about the budget, hardly grounds for a no-notice firing, but…)

There was former Probation Chief Pam Markham, whose steamy office affair with one of her subordinates took months to resolve before she finally left, having been paid full management salary to stay at home for nearly a year while a stumbling “investigation” was conducted by the Superior Court and County Counsel’s office.

There have been several people who were put in charge of the pot program only to depart a few months later, two of whom are now departed Ag Commissioners.

Abrupt departures we know of just off-hand include Public Health Director Barbara Howe, Measure B Program Manager Alyson Bailey, Ag Commissioners Diane Curry and Harinder Grewal, Sheriff Tom Allman, Health and Human Services Director Tammy Moss Chandler, Human Resources Manager Heidi Dunham, Planning Chief Brent Schultz, County Counsel Kit Elliott, and on and on.

We've recently obtained a copy of the lawsuit filed by former Ag Commissioner Dr. Harinder Grewal in January 2020. His truncated Mendo tenure began in March of 2018. He lasted a little over a year before he was abruptly put on administrative leave in July of 2019 after which he was summarily terminated without so much as an explanatory press release. Another one disappeared.

Mr. Grewal came to Mendo after having been Sealer of Weights and Measures in Stanislaus County, arriving here with impressive qualifications that included masters and doctorate degrees from India and an American MBA. His appearances before the Supervisors were always professional in coat and tie.

Grewal ran into trouble from his Ag Department staff soon after taking the position.

According to his lawsuit’s opening paragraph (sworn to under penalty of perjury):

“Plaintiff [Grewal] suffered ongoing harassment by other county employees because of Plaintiff's national origin and religion. When he complained about the harassment to the County Management, he was ignored, then terminated.”

Grewal had worked at Stanislaus County’s Agriculture Department for fifteen years, receiving several promotions and even once running for state assembly as a Democrat.

“Prior to Dr. Grewal’s appointment, the Agriculture Department was in chaos,” his lawsuit states. “Required reports had not been filed for at least two years and employee morale was low and the local Farm Bureau had submitted complaints and concerns about the operation of the Mendocino County Agricultural Department and its ability to perform its mandated duties.

“In addition, the employees were permitted to come and go as they pleased; take time off without prior written approval as required by applicable county ordinances, rules, and Memorandum of Understanding with the various unions; failed to keep daily and weekly schedules; and failed to complete required forms in a timely manner.”

But Grewal, undoubtedly shocked at the work habits of the staff he'd inherited, worked with Human Resources to “establish rules related to work, such as being on time, notifying your supervisor if an employee was going to be late, having a plan for what was to be done each day, and completing reports accurately and in a timely manner.”

Ordinary work rules, you’d think, somehow interpreted by some of his staff as dictatorial.

But, “The employees were not happy about the new rules and resented the fact that a person born and raised in India, and a member of the Sikh religion, was in charge. During meetings some of the employees would ignore Dr. Grewal and some would make comments about his nationality and religion. These comments were often made behind Dr. Grewal’s back, as well as in front of him and other county employees, including Human Resources personnel, the Assistant Agriculture Commissioner [current Ag Commissioenr Jim Donnelly] and others.”

Grewal names several Ag Department employees who exhibited discriminatory behavior, including “Kirk Van Patten (the retired CalFire Pilot who, with Supervisor Ted Williams, was a key proponent of Measure V which declared standing dead trees a nuisance/fire hazard), Matt Daugherty, Aaron Hult and Elizabeth Garcia. He also says Human Resources Director Heidi Dunham did nothing to stop the bad treatment he was subjected to.

Objecting to Dr. Grewal’s new office rules, Van Patten threatened “to complain to his good friend, County Supervisor Ted Williams, and file a complaint with the County’s Human Resources department.”

“When Dr. Grewal asked Mr. Van Patten about this Mr. Van Patten got angry and started yelling at Dr. Grewal and stated that it was because he was born in India that he was not flexible or compromising.”

“Ms. Elizabeth Garcia, a county employee who works in the Agriculture Department, told Dr. Grewal that they (Sikhs) are different people and don’t understand the culture/values here. Dr. Grewal disagreed with this statement and said that he was a US citizen just like her. Ms. Garcia rolled her eyes and made faces in a disrespectful way because Dr. Grewal disagreed with her view.”

Dunham, Grewal, Garcia

Grewal met with HR Director Dunham on May 16, 2018, soon after taking his new Mendo position, to address his concerns.

“The Human Resources director laughed over it and said that the employee [Garcia] is a very difficult employee and that I should ignore her and focus on my job. I was disappointed at the Human Resources Director’s response and felt insulted. In any other county these racial comments would have been taken seriously and an investigation would have been conducted into my complaints. Unfortunately, that did not occur. A few days after the above described meeting I again met with the Human Resources Director and raised the issue. The Human Resources Director said that the employee is a “bitch” and that every department has a few difficult employees, and that I should just ignore her and focus on my work. The Human Resources Director’s answer was with arrogant attitude that felt like, Shut up, get back to work — she didn’t want to deal with it, didn’t have time for it. I felt that talking two times with the Human Resources Director was enough for a month old new Ag Commissioner.”

“Plaintiff brought the inappropriate actions and comments of Matt Daugherty, Elizabeth Garcia, Kirk Van Patten, Aaron Hult and other agriculture employees to Human Resources Director Heidi Dunham’s attention, as well as to the attention of the County CEO Carmel Angelo, however as far as Plaintiff knows, no investigation was undertaken nor were any employees disciplined in any way.”

Dr. Grewal eventually stopped mentioning these employee problems to Ms. Dunham because he “was concerned that if he continued to make complaints he would be terminated.”

“On or about December 4, 2018, Dr. Grewal received a two-step merit increase based on his outstanding performance as the Agricultural Commissioner for Mendocino County. He was also complimented during his performance evaluation for completing mandatory reports to the state that were past due at the time he was hired.

“On December 14, 2018 Plaintiff received a ‘Confidential Memorandum’ from the County’s Chief Executive Officer, Carmel Angelo. In the memo she states that the County had hired an outside investigator to investigate a complaint that Plaintiff treated ‘a female employee worse than you treated male employees.’ The Memorandum went on to state that the allegations were either unfounded or not sustained.”

To repeat for emphasis: the County itself determined that the complaint about Dr. Grewal’s treatment of women in his office was unfounded and unsustained.

Prior to a performance review for Dr. Grewal in June of 2019, however, Board Chair Carre Brown received a written complaint from Farm Bureau rep Scott Cratty alleging that “word is getting into the farmers market world that the AG Department’s functionality is in decline and that its current leadership is creating a hostile work environment for female employees.”

“Dr. Grewal was not informed of this complaint at any time, nor was it discussed with him during his performance review. … Dr. Grewal believes that the accusation that “the AG Department’s functionality is in decline and that its current leadership is creating a hostile work environment for female employees,” was initiated by Elizabeth Garcia, who at the time was attempting to get Dr. Grewal fired because she was prejudiced against him because of his nationality and religion, and because he made her follow rules.”

“On June 18, 2019, after the closed session performance review, with very little explanation and without giving Dr. Grewal a chance to respond to comments and accusations regarding his performance, Dr. Grewal was placed on paid administrative leave.”

“On the day Dr. Grewal was placed on administrative leave, the Assistant Ag Commissioner, Jim Donnelly, met with several of the Ag Inspectors. During the meeting one inspector, Matt Daugherty, told Mr. Donnelly to change the door locks, stating that Dr. Grewal will come and shoot them and that Dr. Grewal is a violent person. Mr. Daugherty also told Mr. Donnelly that when Dr. Grewal was running for Assembly District 12, he beat up his wife. Mr. Daugherty also told Mr. Donnelly that Dr. Grewal was involved in a fight at his Sikh temple. Mr. Donnelly called Human Resources and spoke with Kao Saeturn and asked if locks need to be changed. Mr. Saeturn said there was no need to change the locks. However, shortly after that conversation occurred, Heidi Dunham called Mr. Donnelly and informed him that Matt Daugherty had called and requested the locks be changed. Ms. Dunham then instructed Mr. Donnelly to change the locks.”

“On July 10, 2019 Dr. Grewal was given a notice of termination by Board Chair Carre Brown. The notice of termination incorrectly described Dr. Grewal as an at-will employee and failed to provide him with a means to appeal the decision.”

Dr. Grewal had a signed a four year employment contract.

When we asked CEO Carmel Angelo about Dr. Grewal being put on administrative leave back at that time in 2019, CEO Angelo replied that she was referring our question to Ms. Dunham because “the Ag Commissioner does not report to me. Thank you.”

In fact, CEO Angelo isn’t mentioned as a defendent in Grewal’s lawsuit; instead he names all five Supervisors at the time (Carre Brown, John McCowen, Ted Williams, John Haschak and Dan Gjerde) as well as Dunham and the offending Ag Department employees.

Ms. Dunham refused to respond to our inquiry at that time also, saying simply that “it is a personnel matter.”

Grewal’s lawsuit was filed on January 23, 2020 and has appeared on several Supervisors closed session agendas since then with the usual “Direction was given to staff.”

So far that “direction” has cost Mendo taxpayers upwards of $350,000 — that’s right more than a third of a million dollars — in outside attorney costs at hundreds of dollars per hour paid to a toney San Francisco law firm, and that meter is still running.

The case is now scheduled for a settlement conference in September, and, if no settlement is reached, a preliminary hearing is set for next February and a trial in July (of 2022).

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Tune in today, Sunday May 2, 3:00 pm West Coast, for a sampling from the 2020 Mendocino Spring Poetry Celebration on RhythmRunningRiver at

46th Anniversary * 16th consecutive Revival Mendocino Spring Poetry Celebration

Open reading! Now collecting your audio poetry via smartphone recording & email for broadcast in June, on Dan Roberts' RhythmRunningRiver, KZYX radio, Mendocino County Public Broadcasting.

Act now! Deadline May 23. Send up to four minutes of your fine poetry or prose to

It's easy! Use your audio recording app (or download one). If you don't have a phone, ensorcel a friend! Then simply email the file, the same as with a photo.

Here's a sample from last year's performances.

(Info: Gordon Black, (707) 937-4107,

For further encouragement in detail, see Dan's notes at All you need to know!

Let's hear it from you!

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VINEYARD LABOR is being bussed into the Anderson Valley, arriving early in the morning in vans from over the hill, headed for Philo and points northwest. I remember a story from the Ukiah Daily Journal optimistically called, “Gallo may lead way with UFW contract. Mendocino County not worried about domino effect.” And Mendo wasn’t worried, and still isn’t worried about farmworker unions, even after the UFW showed up at Roederer after a wildcat strike when Roederer tried to chisel field workers out of a few cents per hour back in the late 1990s. A dramatic vote conducted in a Roederer vineyard right here in Boonville saw the Roederer workers vote to be represented by the UFW. Mendo’s wine industry immediately hired the infamous strike-breaking law firm Littler-Mendelsohn in San Francisco and went about weeding out and black listing all the workers who’d voted union. The UFW lasted a year, and that was that for industry unions in Mendocino County.

SPEAKING of the romance of the grape, if you can hear it over the industry’s frost fans, a reader suggests a class action suit for the very real pain and suffering of lost sleep and decreased property values, but mentions it would take at least fifty plaintiffs. Last time, which was the first time the fans had been legally challenged, only two local persons would sign on to Mark Scaramella’s complaint which, in any case, our wine-soaked superior court first said lacked “standing,” and wouldn’t even schedule a settlement conference.

ONE more sign that drought is upon us: A County water hauler tells us that there’s not a ten thousand gallon tank to be had anywhere in the County. All on back order, and there are lots of back orders.

CAN IT BE? Has the Curse of Chesbro at last been lifted? Last we heard, Chesbro, having replaced Patty Berg as our state assemblyperson, a lateral move if there ever was one, finally shuffled off to his home base in Arcata to enjoy a lush retirement. I’ll always treasure Wes’s stirring oratory when he replaced Mike Thompson, another heavy hitter, in the state senate: “Senator Thompson is a tough act to follow. It takes a huge amount of energy to represent the 2nd District. It’s 400 miles long, with 750,000 people. Education is the key to our future. Local tax money should not be taken away from local communities and sent to the state to balance the budget without getting any services being returned.” And so on.

GIANTS strode the Northcoast in those days. Chesbro! Berg! Hauser! Hamburg! Bosco! Riggs!

Wes Chesbro was born in 1951, making him 70 now. Apparently he’s retired. Last elected office was Assembly 2013-14. Replaced by Jim Wood.

Patty Berg was born in 1942, making her 79. Her last political run was a losing run for Insurance Commissioner in 2010.

Dan Hauser was born in 42, making him 79. The Internet mentions he has a cardboard recycling hobby. Lives in Arcata, apparently owns a mobile home park there. He was Arcata City Manager from 2000-2006. Elected to Humboldt Bay Harbor Commission in 2010. Now retired.

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LAKE MENDO or LAKE HUMBO? — The Farm Bureau (aka Grape Grower) Spin

Looking at the picture below of the storage curve at Lake Mendocino as of April 26th, you can see that the lake has actually been gaining storage since February. 

Did you know that the majority of the water that has been coming into Lake Mendocino from the East Fork of the Russian River over the past few months is from the water diverted through the Potter Valley Project? This continued inflow combined with the reduced releases being made out of Lake Mendocino, connected to the Temporary Urgency Change Petition filed by Sonoma Water in January, has allowed for increased storage. 

The benefit of the inflow from the Potter Valley Project is about to change. PG&E filed a variance to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on April 23rd in order to retain minimum storage in Lake Pillsbury.

With this variance, the total amount of water diverted through the Project will be reduced started in early May. Water released into the East Fork of the Russian River from the Project will initially be as low as 5 cubic feet per second (CFS). For reference, the releases in April have been around 35 CFS and without the variance would have been 25 CFS as of May 1st.

2021 is not a record water year by any means, but think about how much worse Lake Mendocino would look if the Potter Valley Project water diversion was eliminated. This system has been linked for over 100 years and now, more than ever, it is important for those that depend on this water supply for families, farms, fisheries, fire suppression, economic stability, recreation, etc. to understand the importance of the water provided from the Project.

(Mendocino County Farm Bureau)

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, May 1, 2021

Faber, Henson, Hopper


JAMES HENSON, Clearlake/Ukiah. Parole violation.

ANDREW HOPPER, Willits. DUI, second offense within ten years with priors, probation revocation.

Jones, Kemp, McKee

DAMIEN JONES, Willits. DUI blood-alcohol greater than 0.15%, second offense within ten years with priors, probation revocation.

REXFORD KEMP II, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Controlled substance for sale while armed with loaded firearm, stun gun, hashish, ammo possession by prohibited person, felon-addict with firearm.

ROBERT MCKEE, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

Owens, Spicer, Stipe

WILLIAM OWENS, Ukiah. Battery, interfering with business.


LEE STIPE, Willits. DUI.

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The thing about inflation is that they’ve figured out how to narrowly target it by where they target the cash infusions. That’s why it’s mostly confined to necessities (home prices, healthy food (not junk food, which is cheaper than ever), healthcare, nominally education, etc.) and assets owned mostly by the rich (stocks, bonds, financial instruments of mass destruction, collectibles, yachts, high-end cars, etc.). Then they measure the crap that everyone wants but most assuredly doesn’t need (big screen TVs, smart phones, low end clothing, junk food, cheap cars, etc.) and claim inflation is near zero. All accounting sleight of hand, in short. People’s near religious belief in and complete credulousness of official statistics allows them to get away with it all too easily.

* * *



The original agreement to maintain the farms in Point Reyes was temporary. The concern was that removing the cows would let blackberries invade and take over the meadows. When the Tule elk could become abundant enough to keep the meadows open, the farms would be closed and removed.

The farms are damaging the environment, creating erosion and water pollution problems. There are plenty of elk, and cows are no longer needed to keep the meadows open. It is past time to close and remove the farms as was originally intended when the park was created.

If you want to establish the original owners, give it back to the Miwoks.

Arthur Slater


* * *

I AM A DISEASED BUNDLE OF NERVES standing between time and eternity like a withered leaf.

— Henry David Thoreau

* * *

BUT THERE ARE OBSTACLES to travel in the United States, or at least obstacles to penetrating the country. We are a naturally welcoming people, but with too strenuous a response from the stranger, the welcome wears off, it shreds, it cools, it vanishes and becomes wary and reluctant. We are full of opinions, but we are temperamentally inhospitable to opposition or to searching questions — and the best traveler has nothing but questions. Americans will talk all day, but they are terrible listeners and have an aversion to probing or any persistent inquisitiveness by a stranger. Americans share with the simple furrow-browed villagers in the folk societies of the world a deep suspicion of personal questions. We say we tolerate dissent, but the expression of a strongly held contrary view can render you undesirable, or even an enemy. A difference of opinion is often construed as defiance. You would not know that from our obsessive self-congratulation and our boasts of liberty and freedom. New Americans, refugees, people fleeing the horrors and tyrannies of their homelands, who have come to the United States for its freedoms, are often the most narrow-minded and censorious. We tolerate difference only when we don't have to look at it or listen to it, as long as it doesn't impact our lives. Our great gift as a country is its size and its relative emptiness, its elbow room. That space allows for difference and is often mistaken for tolerance. The person who dares violate that space is the real traveler. 

— Paul Theroux

* * *

* * *


Greetings to Mr. Huffman, Mr. Wood, and Mr. McGuire:

As our North Coast and Mendocino County representatives, I would like to make you aware of a crisis in the areas you represent. Yes, we have a crisis at our border. Yes, we have an economic crisis due to the covid pandemic. But we have another crisis you need to pay attention to and hopefully correct.

Namely, we have an extreme shortage of qualified, well-trained caregivers to provide home care for our many citizens, many seniors.

Our population is living longer, not necessarily healthier. But so many prefer to stay in their own homes -- their family members are busy with their own lives and cannot be with their relatives usually their parents.

So home care falls to private agencies that are always notoriously short on qualified caregivers to meet the demand for services.

I am a retired registered nurse. I receive calls constantly asking if I can provide care for a loved one. Sometimes I get five calls a day. I am not exaggerating — this constitutes a crisis.

To my knowledge, caregivers are poorly paid, perhaps $12-$14 per hour, usually with no benefits. Is it any wonder there is a shortage of qualified caregivers? Why is this so valuable service so poorly recompensed? We have millions to spend on military and space exploration, but we scrimp and save concerning our own needy citizens. I think this is a national disgrace.

Here on the Mendocino Coast we have a two-year junior college. Why can't we create any "caregiver training programs" and provide those graduates with a decent wage and benefit package?

It could be done if we put our minds to it, to make it a social priority. Remember, you will be old someday and you will appreciate care in your home. Very few people really want to live in an "institution."

Please put your mind to work in solving this local crisis.

Louise Marianna, RN


* * *

* * *


My Fellow Americans,

This is your uncle Joe. I wanted to go over a few things I said last night. Just to be clear.

I told the current leader of China we will not tolerate any new viruses on my watch, especially near elections. 

On the new taxes it's going to be $40k. Not $400K. Thank you Nancy.

On education, we are going to send your kids to government schools for another four years for free. To make sure they learn to be Democrats.

To my LBGTQ-plus chicken hawk friends, we want you in our new education system. We really need to change the names of stuff and rewrite herstory. Thank you Nancy. We can do this.

Immigration on the southern border: If they sign up to be lifetime Democrats we will let them in. It is as simple as that.

Come Christmas there will be $10,000 bills in your stocking and on Easter and there will be $5000 bills and plastic eggs for everyone. We can do this. Once you think of taxes as good and necessary you will see the light. 

We can do this.

Uncle Tom Madden


* * *

THE BEST PEOPLE possess a feeling for beauty, the courage to take risks, the discipline to tell the truth, the capacity for sacrifice. Ironically, their virtues make them vulnerable; they are often wounded, sometimes destroyed.

— Ernest Hemingway

* * *


by John Lanchester

When the Ever Given wedged itself into the side of the Suez Canal on March 23, many, many people were annoyed and upset. The ship’s as yet unnamed captain and all-Indian crew, for a start: it’s going to be interesting to see what the inquiry concludes not just about the grounding, but also about the giant penis the Ever Given drew on satellite tracking before sailing into the canal. It was also a definitively bad day for the Egyptian pilots who were in charge of the ship during its passage through the canal. Also annoyed and upset: everyone stuck on board the several hundred ships waiting to go through. Everyone worried about the stupefyingly diverse cargo on board all these ships: oil, of course, but also many tons of the world’s most mined commodity (can you guess? It’s sand); and, of course, everything else, from widgets to trainers to computers, from coffee to consoles, from plastic crap of all types to medicines to, well, everything. Since 12 per cent of global trade passes through the canal, the economic damage caused by its closure was significant: a boggling $9.6 billion a day.

And then there’s a smaller community of people who, while not exactly glad to hear about the Ever Given, welcomed the opportunity it presents for consciousness-raising. This is the group who see shipping as the great ignored subject at the center of the global economy. The truth is that shipping is responsible, as Rose George put it in the subtitle of her classic 2013 book on the subject, for ‘90 Per Cent of Everything.’ It is the physical equivalent of the internet, the other industry which makes globalization possible. The internet abolishes national boundaries for information, news, data; shipping abolishes these boundaries for physical goods. The main way it does this is by being almost incomprehensibly efficient and cheap. As George points out, if you’re having a sweater shipped from the other side of the planet, the cost of shipping adds just one cent to the price. Another way of putting it would be to say that shipping is, in practice, free. This has had the effect of abolishing geography and location as an economic factor: moving stuff from A to B is so cheap that, for most goods, there is no advantage in siting manufacturing anywhere near your customers. Instead, you make whatever it is where it’s cheapest, and ship it to them instead. As Marc Levinson wrote in ‘The Box’ (2006), his unexpectedly thrilling book about the container industry, shipping is so cheap it has “changed the shape of the world economy.”

(London Review of Books)

* * *

* * *


Anderson Valley Village

May 2021

Welcome to Anderson Valley Village. We are a locally inspired and managed non-profit organization. Our mission is to help older adults remain active, connected, and independent in the place they call home while enhancing the quality of life in our community. 

We currently have 60 members and 55 trained volunteers ready to lend a hand as Pandemic safety concerns allow! Please reach out if you need a friendly volunteer to call you for a chat, shop for you, do outside chores or errands, tech support, etc.

The wonderful AV Village Volunteers at is again - preparing and delivering Pandemic Easter gift baskets for members who live alone or who are the main caregiver for their partners — we thought they could use a little extra attention these days. The baskets were safely and lovingly prepared and filled with sweet and/or savory goodies and well received!

Since the pandemic has made gathering in groups impossible, we’ve struggled with how to continue to build community and relationships without the traditional social interactions we were used to. This is one idea - to introduce members of our community to each other, by sharing a few words about each person. 

Judith Auberjonois, Village Member and Volunteer Extraordinaire

1. How long have you been in the Valley? 

First drove through 1997 coming south from Humboldt and we liked it so much that we bought property in 1997 and moved into the house we built in early 2002. We were looking for a small cottage and ended up with 40 acres of raw land which we developed and then built our house. After my husband passed, I thought about selling this property but the Pandemic contributed to changing my mind and I decided to live here more full-time.

2. Where did you grow up and where were you coming from when you moved to the Valley? 

Grew up in New York city and moved to the valley from LA.

3. Did you have a career or a passion project so far in your life that you would like to tell us about? 

My life was focused on my marriage and raising my children. I was trained in the arts and did work in the theater in my 20s and later, in the film business. I’m quite centered around writing now. I write for the theatre and have written some screenplays.

4. What are you most proud of? 

Navigating decades of monogamy. And raising two beautiful, intelligent, well-educated, gifted, creative and decent human beings, now married with children of their own.

Ann and Francois Christen, Village Members 

1. How long have you been in the Valley?

Ann: My husband and I bought a parcel of land up Nash Mill Road in 2001. We spent weekends up here and built our home in 2006, all the while intending to retire here full time. Happily, in 2013 and 2014 we were able to do just that, and we’ve been here ever since.

Francois: My wife and I started coming to the Valley in late 2000 to look for property where we could build a house and eventually retire. We found our property on the Nash Ranch during the winter of 2001 and purchased it in May of that year.

2. Where did you grow up and where were you coming from when you moved to the Valley?

Ann: I was born and raised in La Jolla, California, a beautiful little beach community. My family spent at least one month every summer in a primitive little cabin at Shaver Lake, in the Sierras. I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for more than 40 years before coming to The Valley. 

Francois: I was born in Montreal, province of Quebec, in Canada. I grew up in a small town in northwestern Quebec on the border with the province of Ontario. My dad managed a small hotel that belonged to the Canadian International Paper Company and my mom ran a small general store that they owned. I came to California in 1970 to do graduate work at UCLA and I liked the California snow plan—keep it mostly in the mountains and visit it whenever you want. I decided to stay. I lived in Los Angeles until 1980 and moved to San Francisco for work. Ann and I moved to the Valley permanently in 2013-2014 when we retired. We had been living in Alameda where Ann worked, and I commuted from there into San Francisco for work.

3. Did you have a career or a passion project so far in your life that you would like to tell us about?

Ann: While I had a wonderful career in health care, and lots of interesting positions and experiences, raising my three daughters and watching them grow and now raise families of their own has brought tremendous richness to my life. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.

Francois: I studied Cognitive Psychology at UCLA and that was my great intellectual passion. But I went into industry because I had to earn a living and there were few academic jobs in my field when I graduated. I segued to marketing research and did that for a living. But coming to the Valley, buying property, and building a home were big accomplishments for Ann and me. Owning and managing a rural property—a tinkerer’s paradise—returned me to my childhood roots. I much prefer the rural life to the city life, and I wish I had figured out how to center my life around a rural life sooner. But then again, perhaps I wasn’t ready for that when I was younger. (They both continue to be very active in the community.)

4. Favorite place to be outside of the Anderson Valley? 

Ann: Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite is my “magic place.”

5. What are you most proud of?

Francois: Getting a Ph.D. at UCLA, and doing a lot of interesting work in my career. I worked at the Rand Corporation, a design company in San Francisco called Landor Associates, SRI International (formerly the Stanford Research Institute), Wells Fargo Bank, and taught part-time at UCLA and UC Berkeley business schools.

Stephanie Gold and Jerry Karp, Village Members and Wonderful Volunteers

1. How long have you been in the Valley? 

We've been living here full-time since 2008 (so 12 years), and lived here part-time since 2006.

2. Where did you grow up and where were you coming from when you moved to the Valley? 

Stephanie - I grew up in New Jersey and moved out to San Francisco as a young adult in 1984. Jerry and I met in San Francisco and got married there, and we moved to Boonville a few years later as middle-aged newlyweds.

Jerry - I grew up first in Newark and then in Maplewood, both in New Jersey. Maplewood is in fact only a few miles from Caldwell, where Stephanie grew up. But we didn't meet in New Jersey. As Stephanie has noted, we met in San Francisco. We were at a garden party, got to chatting and realized we had a lot in common!

3. Did you have a career or a passion project so far in your life that you would like to tell us about? 

Stephanie - I've had two main careers--educator and writer. I taught English in the public schools of San Francisco, worked as a school counselor in a private school, then started my freelance writing career. I wrote travel guide books, book reviews, and magazine articles, and that's what I was working at when we moved to AV (being able to work via the internet made it much easier, of course, to relocate here). Then came the recession of 2008 and a lot of my best magazine contacts folded. Luckily for me, when that door slammed shut, a window opened for me in the shape of a job as school counselor at the Anderson Valley High School. It was one of the luckiest of career changes, because great as freelance writing was, and it was very cool, it couldn't compare to how much I loved working with the students, families, and staff of AVHS. So, thank you, Recession of 2008!

Jerry - My twin passions have been writing/editing and jazz. I've had many jobs that revolved around writing, including four years as a copy writer/editor at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, several years as a teacher of English composition and English as a second language and 11 years as a freelance writer. My love for jazz has taken the form of five years as a producer of jazz and blues programming at WWNO, the New Orleans National Public Radio affiliate, the jazz journalism I did during my time as a freelance writer, my two years as the PR rep for the great SF nightclub Jazz at Pearls, and my 13 years hosting jazz programming at KZYX.

4. Luckiest thing that has happened to you?

Stephanie - I had just earned my teaching credential and was working as a substitute when I got a call offering me a gig as an ESL teacher in Japan. I had such itchy travel feet in those days, I couldn't have been more pleased. So I moved to Osaka and taught there. It wasn't a swell working environment (six-day work weeks and sexist to boot), but they sure paid me well, and when I left, I had ample funds to travel around Asia, ample if I traveled in the cheapest way possible, that is, with friends for a year. I have always been grateful for that experience. It was just what I was thirsty for at that time in my life. And after a year of traipsing through China, Tibet, Nepal, and Turkey, I was quite happy to return to SF and start teaching English.

5. What are you most proud of?

Jerry - When I decided to quit my job at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and try my luck as a freelance writer, I was thinking mostly in terms of tech writing and website content. A friend who knew of my jazz radio background asked if I wanted to contribute (for no pay!) to a monthly jazz newsletter she was starting in San Francisco. After writing one or two pieces for her, I realized I'd been bitten by the jazz bug all over again. I'm proud of the fact that only about 6 months later, I was writing jazz pieces for the San Francisco Chronicle's Sunday Datebook and other publications, and getting hired by musicians to write their professional bios and liner notes. I even got a feature article into Down Beat Magazine, one of the best-known jazz magazines in the U.S. Needless to say, I met a lot of fascinating musicians along the way.

Two-time Mendocino County Fair Sheep Dog Trial buckle winner, Kevin Owens, 2013.

1. How long have you been in the Valley? 

46 years

2. Where did you grow up and where were you coming from when you moved to the Valley? 

I grew up in North Wales and moved here from Sacramento.

3. Did you have a career or a passion project so far in your life that you would like to tell us about? 

Not a career but I like playing music, mostly rock and roll and blues on the guitar. I am going to play music at the Yorkville Market on Saturday May 22nd from 12:30 to 4 pm with the High Rollers — come check us out. And check out my album out on Spotify — Kevin Owens “Finally Made It” (a Blues Rock Journey)


Also, check out the Redwood Empire Sheepdog Championship 2019 as recorded at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds in Bonneville, CA. Commentary from Kevin Owens and W. Dan of KZYX radio on YouTube: Redwood Empire Sheepdog Championship 2019 - YouTube


4. Favorite place to be outside of the Anderson Valley? 

The Himalayas!

Upcoming AV Village Events

See these events and more listed on our Events Calendar

<> : 

Again, the Zoom link is the same for all the AV Village Events - it is under each event on our calendar and will be emailed to our mailing list beforehand.

AV Village Monthly Zoom Gathering: Matter of Balance


Sunday May 2nd (note this a change from our usual 2nd Sunday date) 4 to 5 PM

Join Micheline White, Executive Director at Mendonoma Health Alliance, for a special Matter of Balance presentation. She will go over the importance of Balance with us and talk about the 3 main points in fall prevention/maintaining good balance:

1. Safe home environment - reduce tripping hazards, etc.

2. Maintaining physical activity

3. Strategies for reducing fear of falling that can further reduce physical activity and socializing…

Please RSVP with the coordinator ( so we can get an idea of attendance, thank you. Looking forward to seeing you soon! BYOB for a more enjoyable event!

Our next Monthly Zoom Gathering, Sunday June 13th — Member Party

AV Village Activity: Trippin’


Monday May 3rd 

4:30 to 5:30 PM 

Join AV Village member Mary O'Brien for this entertaining new event!

Participants should have 2 or 3 pictures of a particular place they have visited, which they’ll share on Zoom. Then they’ll give a few facts about the place and ask participants to guess the locale. After that they can share an event- humorous or sobering- that happened while they were there and why it was meaningful to them. The coordinator will be attending this activity for tech help and prior tech support can be arranged with advanced notice.

* * *

AV Village Weekly Walking Group


Every Tuesday (May 4, 11, 18, 25th, 10 AM 

Meet at the Community Park (near the AV Health Center). 

For more info contact: Kathy Cox

AV Village Book Conversation: “The Righteous Mind - Why Good people Are Divided by Politics and Religion”


Date, Time and Meeting place TBD

If you are not a regular book conversation attendee please contact Lauren for details

The book is “The Righteous Mind - Why Good people Are Divided by Politics and Religion” by Jonathan Haidt and we will cover the Introduction & chapters 1 & 2 (through pg. 51). If you are interested, please contact Lauren for more details

* * *


"That's why we're not allowed to film these ongoing activities. Because every time they open the Stargate there's a chance something could go cataclysmically wrong." -Emmett Bregman

The recording of last night's (2021-04-30) Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio show on 107.7fm KNYO-LP Fort Bragg is right here:

About half an hour into the show one-time almost-CA-Senator and pilot Mitch Clogg called to tell his true story of rescue by helicopter cable from being lost and alone in the vast wilderness at 80-something. After a grueling hour of that, service veteran hobo wanderer recumbent-bicyclist Douglas Wayne Coulter, present with me in the studio, masked and properly socially distanced (six or eight feet away), spoke about his life and various damages and difficulties, physical and legal and psychological, and played a dozen of his original songs on a child-size Spanish guitar he bought earlier in the music store in the old Union Lumber Company building, and he sang and recited poetry till after midnight. And then there's the whole rest of the show. This is KNYO-LP Fort Bragg (CA). Where else can you get radio like this actually on the real air? Nowhere, that's where. If there's somewhere else, tell me where; I'd sure like to hear it.

Also, at there's a fresh batch of not-necessarily-radio-useful but worthwhile items that I set aside for you while gathering the show together, such as:

Pantyhose as investment opportunity.

A short film beginning with the awful things men say to Asian-American women in bars. I think she should just slap him. That's the way it used to be, when a man was being a jerk to /any/ woman, and it kind of worked. But "Men are afraid women will laugh at them. Women are afraid men will kill them," so it's ominous because uncertain. For example: I have only just learned, here in our dystopian science-fiction future, to not say Oriental anymore. I really don't see anything wrong with it; it's the first word that comes to my mind because it used to be the word, but unless you're making a point about people who like to hurt other people's feelings (and your audience grasps that's what you're doing, which you can hardly ever count on even if you're only talking to yourself), it's not the word anymore. And some men like to be slapped. They think that means you like them.

Speaking of which, rerun: Horny Angry Tango. "I cannot slap you back. Because you are a lady." "That clearly is a double standard. But it's prob'ly for the best."

p.s. Email me your written work and I'll read it Friday night on the radio on the very next MOTA.

-- Marco McClean,


  1. Craig Stehr May 2, 2021

    It is 3:25AM in Redwood Valley, and I’ve just watched 2 hours of a May Day Health & Well Being Abhishekam/Puja/Aarthi performed earlier at the Shiva Murugan Temple in Concord, CA (via ZOOM)…it’s on YouTube. Afterwards, I checked the news on ABC, followed by reading through the Sunday AVA online edition. Frankly, the spiritual path is the only sensible way to go. The rest is nothing but a pile of fecal pig matter, and the condition of a sizable percentage of the humanity is akin to worms in excretia. Let us all do ourselves a huge favor, and get established on the spiritual platform; this is the fourth dimension, and you can live there happily. ~Om Shanthi~

    • Chris LaCasse May 2, 2021

      From the increasingly farcical tenor of your screeds, sounds like you might benefit from joining the rest of us on the path of normal waking hours.

    • Michael Koepf May 2, 2021

      Swami, the path to enlightenment does not lead through ABC News nor the AVA. You’re correct concerning the spiritual platform, but when do you sleep?

    • Tim McClure May 2, 2021

      I don’t know if the “Spiritual Path” is for everyone, but on the subject of “fecal pig matter” does anyone have any information regarding this endless parade of mindless motorcycle enthusiasts presently tearing up the peace and tranquillity of the Public soundscape on our beloved SR1? I know “they” say that this is the sound of “Freedom “ but when it goes on day and night without pause in groups of 20 or 30 bikers it makes a mockery of local noise/public nuisance laws! If the Cops had decibel meters they would have a bonanza writing these scofflaws up. Who can see the limits of all the fine civic improvements which could be funded from this untapped new revenue stream?
      Tim McClure

    • Marmon May 2, 2021

      I agree, ABC and the AVA are probably the worst sources for spiritual enlightenment anyone could possibly turn to. It’s no wonders you decided to go back to sleep, I mean cross over to the fourth dimension.


  2. George Hollister May 2, 2021

    As a government outsider, my impression of Harinder Grewal was that he was a highly qualified professional, and served agriculture and the county well. Something not seen often in this neck of the woods. He was the first person I heard say that the way to get through the backlog of cannabis permits was to fund, and fill more county positions that were involved with doing that, and reject the permits that obviously would never qualify. Ted Williams said the same thing 3 years later, and the BOS has finally recognized the problem today. Harinder said the solution “was simple”.

    The cannabis fee money was there to implement the program, but was spent elsewhere.

    • Michael Koepf May 2, 2021

      I think Grewal believed in an honest days work for an honest day’s pay. Sadly, he came to the wrong place.

    • Marmon May 2, 2021

      “…he was the first person I heard say that the way to get through the backlog of cannabis permits was to fund, and fill more county positions that were involved with doing that, and reject the permits that obviously would never qualify.”

      Ted Williams doesn’t like talk like that. Blaming county staffing is a big no-no for him. It undermines what he’s trying to do with the change to a use permit requirement . He got all over Haschak last week for keeping that rumor alive.

      If I remember right it was ag commissioner Curry who was opposed to charging fees for permits to people that obviously would never qualify, but the County was after all those unpermitted buildings throughout the County and wanted make those who put them up, would finally pay up.


      • George Hollister May 2, 2021

        What it appears is the county issued in lieu permits, for a fee, to anyone who walked in the door, and the permittees could call themselves “legal”. Home free to do whatever. It was all about bringing in the money, and bring in money they did, over $5.5 million a year. They also brought in black marketeers, from all over the world with the violent crime element added to it. Then the county failed to fund the cannabis program to the extent needed. My liberal mind tells me 10 additional qualified staff, which seems to have been enough to administer the program, would have cost the county only $1.5 million in addition, and a fraction of the 5.5. But that would have resulted in less profit to the county. So that was not an option.

        This gets to the heart of the problem citizens have with Phase 3. The county can not be trusted to administer the program. They can not be trusted to do anything, but pursue bringing in money and making a profit. It is the model used for everything they do. The needs of citizens are secondary, or not even a consideration. Look at the “homeless” problem farce. Why isn’t the road department funded properly? Roads don’t make a profit. But growing “homeless”, increases profits.

        This is perverse, incase I need to say the obvious.

        I have to add, this problem is not unique to Mendocino County, and it should make you wonder about Biden’s multi $trillion proposal to add on to what is already big problem across the country.

  3. Lazarus May 2, 2021

    Gone but not forgotten…

    “Abrupt departures we know of just off-hand include Public Health Director Barbara Howe, Measure B Program Manager Alyson Bailey, Ag Commissioners Diane Curry and Harinder Grewal, Sheriff Tom Allman, etc…”
    “Abrupt departures we know of just off-hand include Public Health Director Barbara Howe, Measure B Program Manager Alyson Bailey, Ag Commissioners Diane Curry and Harinder Grewal, Sheriff Tom Allman, etc…”

    What could have possibly happened to the previous Sherrif?
    This guy was without a doubt the most popular, energetic, influential, and powerful politician in Mendocino County. He clearly loved being the Sheriff and the adulation it brought him. Everything from always positive local media to a starring role on CBS 60 Minutes among other TV and radio appearances. Then within a month, he was gone. WTF happened? Rumors ran wild for weeks around the County.
    Then he surfaces in Shelter Cove as a Deputy. He has a heart attack, goes back to Humboldt County, and then, the drums say he’s moving out of state. I had no idea Boss Angelo, and the BoS had such immense power. If indeed, his exit was their handy work.
    All the other departures, I think, were hires or appointees, not elected officials.
    Be careful, it’s creepy out there.,

    • George Hollister May 2, 2021

      I heard Allman say that he intended to retire before his last run, but then he ran anyway. He said he did not want to leave without there being someone prepared to replace him. Sort of unusual, but it does not appear Allman left because of pressure from others in government. He planned to leave on his own.

      Rumors? Rumors mean nothing without eventual supportive facts.

      • Lazarus May 2, 2021

        You sound like one of the gushing groupies…
        Be well,

        • George Hollister May 2, 2021

          I was one of Allman first supporters, I don’t regret it. But I do know he is human, like the rest of us. Allman knows how to stay ahead of the curve, better than anyone in public life I have observed. By the time anyone wants to suggest he should do something, he has already done it, and usually done it right.

          • Lazarus May 2, 2021

            I think Mr. Allman was more a politician than a Sheriff. Ask the regular people of Covelo about his brand of law and order. He abandoned them years ago, and many hate him for it.
            And if he had not had a suspicious infatuation with ole Howard hospital in Willits, Measure B might have turned out differently… instead of the cluster f**k it has become, ask around.
            Be well,

  4. Bruce McEwen May 2, 2021

    To reduce Thomas Allman to the rank of a mere politician, strikes me as something of an understatement. The teeth any dentist would die for, the rusty-blond moustache, snapping blue eyes, ready smile and, let’s not forget his willingness to put his bare hand in the fire to rescue a damsel …well, to my mind, “Cousin Tom,” as you call him, was no more or less of a “politician” than any other senior law enforcement officer anywhere else in the country, let alone the petty politics of the only place you’ve ever been, Laz. And try to remember, it takes a bit of politicking to get elected, even to dog catcher, any place you go (not that you ever will…).

    • Lazarus May 3, 2021

      Bubba, your tenor reminds me of ole Harv…
      Be well,

  5. Rye N Flint May 3, 2021

    RE: Big Grows and Sasquatch taking the blame

    What is Mendo county going to do about the creek sucking cartel grows near the borderlands? Really? Did anyone watch the HULU Sasquatch doc?

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