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AN EXCEPTIONALLY STRONG DOME of high pressure will persist over much of the western United States through next week, resulting in dry weather with hot interior temperatures. Coastal areas will remain seasonably cool with persistent marine layer clouds and only partial afternoon sun. (NWS)
6 NEW COVID CASES reported in Mendocino County yesterday afternoon.
ROBERT EMIEL TOGNOLI
Robert Emiel Tognoli passed away in the early morning of Friday May 14th, 2021.
Named Robert Emiel Tognoli, “Bob” was born in San Francisco, CA October 25, 1935. He was the only child of Susie and Dominic Tognoli. He was their “Bobby” and he was doted over his entire life.
Bob was born and raised in North Beach, he accepted Catholicism at an early age and spoke his native language of Italian until entering school. During his youthful years, Bobbi was an active member of Saint Peters and Paul Catholic Church. Fluent in Italian, you could often find Bob showing off his linguistic talents.
Bob attended schools in the San Francisco Bay Area. Upon graduating from Sacred Heart High School, Bob started his first of many, entrepreneurial quests by opening his first automobile machine shop. He also met the love of his life Rosalind and together they produced 3 beautiful children: Matthew, Michael and Lorraine Tognoli. Upon retirement, he moved with his devoted wife, Rosalind, who predeceased him, to Redwood Valley California (Greenfield Ranch) where he began his love of creative adventures. Bob was a fine artesian. He could often be found at the annual Ren faire, graciously peddling his many original pieces of pounded brass and manzanita cookware. Sethland’s Forge was a sought-after product and a spot many wandered to for years.
Bob was also active in community activities in both Mendocino and Sonoma counties. Tirelessly mentoring and volunteering at various correctional and rehab institutions throughout the region. Bob had a special gift and calling to support others, especially with those who struggled with addiction or low self-esteem.
Bob loved to travel and shared many memories of his romps with friends and family. From Cuba to Jamaica, there were few spots left on the planet that he had not dwelled upon.
The love of his life was his family.
He is survived by his sons Matthew and (Loretta) Tognoli of Ukiah, Ca. Michael and (Troyle) Tognoli of Ukiah, CA. Step-sons Morgan and (Heather) and John and step daughter Alley as well as grandchildren Dominic Tognoli of Ukiah, CA. and Susan and (Alexander) Tognoli-Aberya of Macon, Georgia.
He is also survived by his dear friends Charese and Elizabeth whom he cared for dearly.
He is predeceased by his former wife Diane and daughter Lorraine Tognoli.
A Remembrance gathering followed by food and beverage will be held on Saturday July 10th @ 12 noon at the Portuguese Hall (822 Stewart Street) in Fort Bragg CA.
In lieu of flowers the family request a donation to a local-non-profit of your choosing.
EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING ISSUED FOR MENDOCINO, Lake Counties This Weekend
by Matt Pera
The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for Mendocino and Lake counties this weekend as temperatures are expected to skyrocket across a large swath of Northern Californa.
The warning covers all of Lake County and the northeast corner of Mendocino County, in addition to much of the inland areas to the north. It begins Saturday afternoon and lasts through Monday evening, but temperatures will begin to shoot up Friday, according to the weather service.
Sonoma County is also expected to heat up this weekend, but temperatures won’t reach the threshold for a weather service warning, meteorologists said.
A high of 95 degrees is predicted for Clear Lake on Friday. Over the weekend, highs are expected to reach 103 degrees — about 15 degrees above normal — and notch down to 101 on Monday, according to the weather service.
The normal high temperatures for those dates in Clear Lake range from 87 to 88 degrees.
The heat is expected to stick around through the first half of next week and start to drop off Thursday, said meteorologist Scott Carroll.
The hot, dry weather could bring increased fire danger, but winds are expected to remain light, Carroll said.
The incoming heat wave is triggered by a high pressure system that’s centered over the Pacific Northwest. Forecasters initially warned of another sweltering weekend in Sonoma County, but have revised that prediction with the system expected to stay north of the area, said Bay Area meteorologist Drew Peterson.
“Looking at our forecast highs, they don’t look anything like what we were thinking three or four days ago,” Peterson said.
In Santa Rosa, the high temperature is expected to hover around 90 degrees on Saturday, dropping to the upper 80s on Sunday and the mid 80s on Monday, he said.
Santa Rosa’s normal high temperature is 84 degrees for those dates.
"We’re going to be somewhat above normal, but at this point the trend is moving away from those higher temperatures,“ Peterson said.
(Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
BOONVILLE FARMERS MARKET
Every Friday at 4-6pm
At the Anderson Valley Brewing Company
17700 Boonville Rd
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Sweet summer has arrived at Brock Farms, here is an update . We have summer squash, cucumbers, beets, garlic, shallots, eggplant, cabbage, potatoes, basil, salad mix, onion, chard, kale, broccolini, and tomatoes are trickling in.
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VELMA'S FARM STAND AT FILIGREEN FARM
Open Friday 2-5pm and Saturday 11am-3pm! We will be offering vegetables including lettuce, kale, beets, chard, turnips, broccoli, cabbage, cilantro, fennel, kohlrabi, and summer squash. We will also have fresh flower bouquets, our 2020 olive oil, quince apple butter, dried prunes and raisins. All items are certified biodynamic and delicious! Follow us on Instagram for updates @filigreenfarm or email Annie at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. We accept cash, credit card, check, and EBT/SNAP!
JACKSON STATE FOREST UPDATES
So much is happening, I will try to keep it brief and cover what is necessary.
Since last Wednesday no logging has occurred in Caspar 500. Anderson, the independent logging company working there, called out both Cal Fire and law enforcement publicly for not securing the area and said they would not log until they did.
Activists responded by continuing the daily blockades, telling Cal Fire they needed to make a public statement saying that they had halted the logging in Caspar 500.
On Tuesday evening, June 22nd, Cal Fire issued a News Release stating, "JDSF is temporarily pausing operations on the Caspar 500 THP to further engage with our local community.”
Then at noon today, June 23rd, Cal Fire issued another News Release inviting the public to a meeting on Saturday, June 26th, to express their concerns. (see attached) A meeting in three days? Then what? This is how Cal Fire expects to engage the community before they start logging again in Caspar 500? Nice try.
The Coalition to Protect Jackson State Forest has made it very clear to Cal Fire on a number of occasions that they are totally willing to meet providing that all representatives and the Tribes are present, and that no logging is taking place. It is not ok that Cal Fire has ignored the Coalition and set up their dog and pony show so they can say they met with the public and now it's ok to log. A meeting with only three days notice is not appropriate. I for one will not play this game.
We will continue to monitor the entrances to the Caspar 500 and have rotating blockades. Keep your letters and phone calls coming.
[MCN-Discussion]- CalFire Meeting 6/26
So the community event CalFire announced to "provide an environment for the community to express themselves and their ideas about forest management" is not really a meeting.
To quote a CalFire information officer's response to our email request for an agenda, "Saturday’s event isn’t a meeting with an agenda, it's more of an informational fair with various subject matter booths and staff available to answer questions.” That sounds more like an infomercial!
Vince Taylor, the key person responsible for shutting all logging in JDSF for several years, writes, "I suggest everyone attending tell JDSF/Cal Fire to halt logging until they update their EIR and management plan to reflect new information on climate change, carbon sequestration, and fire risk."
JP O'Brien, PhD Climate Scientist adds,
"And just for context so that everyone knows (knowledge is power!), the most recent EIR on which the current management plan is based is approximately 900 pages and of that, the section on climate change is a mere 4 pages- completely and wholly inadequate.
"In 2017, CalFire did an addendum to the EIR, however, the additional information is still extremely sparse and it didn't go through CEQA review. In the addendum, they essentially conclude that climate change at local scales (JDSF) is uncertain so they are unable to plan for or do anything about it. The first page of the addendum explains that this is not a true subsequent EIR and that the agency believed that they didn't have to prepare one.
"All that said, there is nothing that substantially or credibly addresses climate change in the environmental documents that underpin Jackson's management plan."
Additionally, if you do attend, please be sure to state that you are speaking for yourself. The Coalition to Protect Jackson State Forest has been very clear in its communications to CalFire. Any meeting should have in attendance representatives of all Tribes and groups, and no meeting should take place while cutting is happening..
Anna Marie Stenberg
FYI This just came out on you tube yesterday. They are trying to control/takeback the narrative. If you watch the first minute or two you’ll get the drift.
THE VELVET BANDIT: MENDOCINO COUNTY’S VERY OWN STREET ARTIST
The Velvet Bandit stalks the Highway 101 corridor looking for her next victim. Using the anonymity of modernity, where the average citizen is too busy “staring at their phones,” in broad daylight, the Velvet Bandit will use wallpaper adhesive and a paintbrush to plaster her amusing and lively paintings for the community to see.
THERE GOES THE RIPARIAN ZONE
A Reader Writes: Take a drive to the Navarro River bridge at the foot of Philo-Greenwood road. Not only is that beautiful stream heartbreakingly pathetic, now PG&E’s clearcutting gang has turned parts of the surrounding landscape into a desert. Truly awful.
AS PROMISED, I hooked a right off 128 this morning (Thursday), winding up through the Gowan's apple acres to Shields Cemetery where I found it fresh cut and orderly. Case closed.
THIS ROUTINE KEEN TEEN CASE got all the way to the Supreme Court? When 14-year-old Brandi Levy of Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania didn't make the varsity cut as a freshman cheerleader for the Mahanoy Golden Bears, she sounded off on social media, as teenagers are known to do. “I was frustrated. I was upset. I was angry. And I made a post on Snapchat,” Levy told ABC News Live. “I said, 'F school, F cheer, F softball, F everything'.” And for spouting off on her own time after school, her high school suspended her. Brandi made a federal case out of it and won.
UKIAH has been flummoxed for years about what to do with the Palace Hotel, one irony being that it's Ukiah's most attractive large structure although it's been abandoned for forty years. Here's my idea, Ukiah, and I waive consulting fees: Announce that you will give the property to anyone who can prove they have the means and the serious intent to rehab it. The Hopland Hotel, betcha, cost more to rehab than the Palace would, and it's an architectural masterpiece that lifts the whole town. In fact Hopland, for a wide spot in the road, looks pretty darn good, while Ukiah looks like some small city in Chechnya after its civil war, complete with the walking wounded shuffling up and down State Street. BTW, I find it hard to believe that the ghastly motels on Airport Boulevard are so busy that an even larger ghastly hotel (Charlie Mannon's Savings Bank-financed, of course) has been erected down the street, complete with vistas of CostCo. I understand that the Airport motels are locally known as the Tweaker Riviera, especially in the hot weather when they check in to tweak with the AC turned up full blast.
JUST FIXING THE IGNITION, OFFICER
About five months ago Mason Harris came to me and asked me to help him change an ignition on a four-wheel drive he inherited from an uncle who passed away. Mason said he wasn’t mechanically inclined. Turning a wrench is a hobby of mine. So I said yes, I would help him.
VERY BAD MISTAKE.
He even did all the work. I was just helping with advice and looking for a hidden key maybe his uncle left behind. Out came a bunch of guys saying, What are you doing stealing our truck? Mason even gave me a tool out of the truck so these guys could claim I stole it from that truck.
Needless to say, I just signed a plea deal for three years because they threatened to give me eight years and eight months at 80% because of prior strike convictions. I just would like to say that no good deed goes unpunished. The justice system here is shitty. And of course Mason Harris and the guys from that shop are pieces of shit.
Patrick Shane Schuetz
Mendocino County Jail, Ukiah
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ED NOTE: Here’s the original press release on the incident in question (with the AVA’s original title):
HOTWIRE HARRIS & UNSUPERVISED SCHUETZ
On Monday, January 11, 2021 at approximately 5:21 PM, a Deputy from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office was dispatched to a reported vehicle burglary in progress at an address in the 3500 block of North State Street in Ukiah.
Upon arrival, the Deputy contacted the reporting party who advised he owns a truck repair business at the location. The business owner reported seeing two subjects inside of a pickup that had been dropped off for repairs. The business owner contacted the vehicle owner to confirm he had not sent anyone to get items out of his vehicle, and he stated no one should be inside of his vehicle.
The business owner provided descriptions of the two male subjects. The Deputy, with the assistance of officers from the Ukiah Police Department, located two male subjects matching the description in the area.
An in-field lineup was conducted, which positively identified the two males as the same subjects who were seen inside of the pickup.
Further investigation was conducted, which revealed the locked vehicle had been broken into, and it appeared the subjects were attempting to “hot wire” the pickup. The dashboard had been damaged and loose wires had been cut in the area of the pickup's ignition. There were various tools and other items left in the pickup which did not belong to the owner.
The first subject was identified as Mason Harris. Harris was found to be on pretrial court ordered release for second degree burglary with search terms.
The second subject was identified as Patrick Schuetz. Schuetz was found to be on Post Release Community Supervision (PRCS-County Parole) with search terms. A search of Schuetz's belongings revealed several tools commonly used in the commission of burglaries.
Harris was ultimately placed under arrest for Attempted Vehicle Theft, Second Degree Burglary, and Conspiracy.
Schuetz was ultimately placed under arrest for Violation of County Parole, Second Degree Burglary, Conspiracy, and Possession of Burglary Tools.
Both subjects were transported and booked into the Mendocino County Jail.
In accordance with the COVID-19 emergency order issued by the State of California Judicial Council, bail was set at zero dollars for both subjects and they were released after the jail booking process.
The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office would like to thank the officers from the Ukiah Police Department for their assistance with this case.
Response to Bill Thompson of Petaluma’s letter: “No need for an AK.”
From the wealth ghetto of Petaluma, Bill Thompson confuses "AK" with "AR" rifles and then fails to differentiate them further as to their capabilities and situational usage. Neither the AK platform or the AR system uses "clips" while being fired. Thompson should get his money back from the "GUN SAFETY" seminar he says he took.
Bill Thompson (who is not a reincarnation of Hunter late of Glen Ellen) asserts that the best gun (for home defense?) is a 12 gauge shotgun loaded with "buckshot" so there are "no worries about rounds going through walls".
Au contraire Billy, 12 gauge shotgun shells offer buckshot loads in two common sizes OO and the slightly smaller OOO size shot. Both of these will easily penetrate a wood framed, sheet rocked wall with multiple balls of shot. Double OO shot is the same diameter as a .357 Magnum bullet or a 9 millimeter bullet and is lethal at quite a distance in the open and equally deadly when having passed through two layers of compressed gypsum wallboard.
Thompson ought to read the AVA coverage about the armed repeat burglar who is home invading near the coast. Persons residing in that area are the best ones to decide what kind of firearm if any they might employ should they encounter this later day Aaron Bassler.
Pvt. E-1 Irv Sutley
Glen Ellen, CA
P.S. For the Record, Mr. T, I was the one who identified the model of SKS carbine Bassler was carrying for AVA staffers before he got skunked.
CITY BOOTH AT FORT BRAGG FARMERS MARKET ON JUNE 30
The City of Fort Bragg will join the Farmers Market on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 between 3:00 and 5:30 PM outside City Hall, 416 North Franklin Street, to seek public input and provide information on two important programs.
New Recreation Feature
The City is considering applying to the California State Parks Rural Recreation and Tourism Grant Program for funding. Two projects under consideration are restoration of the old gymnasium, including repurposing of the former pool building behind City Hall, and construction of new ball courts at the C.V. Starr Community Center. Interested individuals may also provide feedback through an online survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZRB6ZR3. This survey is available until Wednesday, June 30, 2021 at 5:00 pm.
COVID Utility Assistance Program
Staff will also be providing information and answering questions about the COVID Utility Assistance Program. Eligible customers within the City limits of Fort Bragg may qualify for up to $500 to pay eligible household utility bills through the COVID Response Community Development Block Grant. Application forms will be available at the City’s booth on June 30. For further information about the program, or if you need assistance filling out the application, please call (707) 961-2825 ext. 122.
Stop by the City’s booth next Wednesday to let us know your thoughts about a new recreation feature in the City or to pick up a utility assistance program application form.
(Fort Bragg City Presser)
2:34AM LAR, LU, & TWO STUN GUNS
On Monday, June 21, 2021 at 2:34 A.M. Mendocino County Deputies were on routine patrol in the area of North State Street and Orr Springs Road in Ukiah.
During this time, they observed a dark colored pickup truck turn onto Orr Springs Road from North State Street. The Deputies observed the pickup truck displayed expired registration.
The Deputies performed a traffic stop on the pickup truck and contacted the two occupants. The driver was identified as Lawrence Ortiz, 36, of Ukiah, and the passenger was identified as Luiz Gonzalez, 23, of Covelo.
Gonzalez was found to be on Pre-Trial Release with terms to include a fourth amendment search waiver. Through conversation the Deputies learned a methamphetamine smoking pipe was in his possession.
Deputies also learned Ortiz possessed methamphetamine and a weapon inside the vehicle.
The Deputies searched the vehicle and located an electroshock weapon and a baton with an electroshock device at the end. Ortiz was prohibited from possessing electroshock weapons. The Deputies also located methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia inside the vehicle.
Ortiz was arrested for Felon in Possession/Use of Stun Gun, Possession of a Billy Club and Possession of Controlled Substance.
Ortiz was booked into the Mendocino County Jail, to be released after the booking process on zero bail pursuant to COVID-19 bail schedule set forth by the State of California Judicial Council.
Gonzalez was cited to appear in the Ukiah Superior Court for a Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.
LITTLE RIVER'S WILD FISH WON'T BE RENEWED
Wild Fish kicked out
Randy Lutge wrote (Coast Listserve):
"We had news from our landlord, Young Kim, owner of the commercial block in Little River where Wild Fish is, that he will not renew our lease in August this year - and so our last dinner service will be Friday August 27, 2021. We were not given any reason, strangely, so we cannot tell you why or what will follow. We can disclose that over the last year he objected to our using the outdoor area behind the restaurant, which he offered no explanation for - just that he had 'objections'."
That’s a lousy way to treat a local successful business. Hopefully they can relocate to a better and larger venue.
* * *
ON LINE COMMENT:
I was informed that "Great Plates" paid restaurants to provide meals for seniors during the pandemic. Nevertheless, Wild Fish stepped up to the plate (p.i.) and did it with panache, including delivering the meals to peoples' doorstep every day. Thanks Wild Fish, and good luck finding a new spot!
PS. The folks at Wild Fish should be receiving awards for their incredible generosity in feeding free of charge the seniors on the Mendo Coast with the "Great Plates" program throughout the pandemic. And this is the thanks they get. It's a disgrace.
UPDATE TO THE PG&E MEDICAL BASELINE PROGRAM & PSPS RESOURCES
Anderson Valley Village
Update to the PG&E Medical Baseline Program - customers can only self-certify their eligibility to enroll in the Medical Baseline Program until the end of this month. Starting July 1st you need to get a medical practitioner to fill out part of the application. For customers whom are already in the program with self-certification - PE&E will contact you about what to do next. Program details and link below or If you have questions or need assistance filling out the Medical Baseline Program application, call us at 1-800-743-5000.
PG & E - Medical Baseline Program
The Medical Baseline Program, also known as Medical Baseline Allowance, is an assistance program for residential customers who depend on power for certain medical and independent living needs. The program includes two different kinds of help: A lower rate on your monthly energy bill and Extra notifications in advance of a Public Safety Power Shutoff https://gmail.us3.list-manage.com/track/click?u=cea1e601922fa82e47579cc80&id=3a2ad45a95&e=358077c1c9
P G and E — vulnerable customer program
Vulnerable Customer requirements:
Households with one or more individuals who have self-certified that they have a serious illness or condition that could become life threatening if their electric or gas service is disconnected for nonpayment receive an in-person visit from a PG&E representative before disconnection. Our representative posts a notice within 48 hours before or at the time of disconnection for nonpayment.
Vulnerable Customer status remains on your PG&E account for 90 days. If you believe that you or your household member's illness or condition will extend beyond 90 days, you must complete the Vulnerable Customer Application to request a one-year extension. Need to reapply for this program — don’t need Dr certification. Like the medical baseline program they get Extra notifications in advance of a Public Safety Power Shutoff: https://www.pge.com/en_US/residential/save-energy-money/help-paying-your-bill/longer-term-assistance/medical-condition-related/vulnerable-customer.page
PG and E — PSPS Support: https://www.pge.com/en_US/residential/outages/public-safety-power-shuttoff/psps-support.page
BIRDS IN BROGANS
Suzi Long art show Friday in Willits
The Willits Center for the Arts presents FEATHERED FEETures Suzi Long’s watercolor series of birds in shoes! The reception is this Friday night 6-9 and the exhibit runs through July 25, open Friday-Sun every weekend (not the 4th).
Suzi started painting cattle egrets she saw in the San Lorenzo River while in Santa Cruz in February. Their yellow feet made her think of shoes, and she started putting them in high heels with fishnet stockings, waders, cowboy boots, and has added so many different birds to her aviary, including roadrunner in skates, woodpecker in crampons, Raven in loafers, turkey in Puritan shoes, and 50 more on display in Willits!
Email her for a sample, email@example.com, or call for more info 707-779-8713. She hopes to see lots of coast friends in Willits!
707 TO BE SPLIT UP
From Supervisor Williams
Hey 707 folks:
To: The Honorable Ted Williams
Mendocino County of Board of Supervisors 501 Low Gap Road, Room 1010, Ukiah, CA 95482
RE: 707 Area Code Overlay
Dear Supervisor Williams:
This letter is to inform you that the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) will begin the process to introduce a new area code to the area now served by the 707 area code. The 707 area code is expected to be depleted of available prefixes by December 2023. Pursuant to Federal Communications Commission policy and CPUC rules, the CPUC must adopt an area code relief plan to provide additional numbering resources. Pending approval by the CPUC, a new area code will be introduced on top of the 707 area code using the overlay method. The new area code will provide additional prefixes and new telephone numbers for customers in the 707 area.
When the CPUC begins area code relief planning in the area served by an existing area code, the perspectives of local government officials and the community are very important. The CPUC has made available a recorded webcast to inform local jurisdictions and the public about the new area code addition. We invite you and your constituents to view the recorded webcast and to provide comments. The recorded webcast will be available at https://www.cpuc.ca.gov/AreaCodes/ beginning August 1, 2021. Comments about the 707 area code overlay may be submitted to the CPUC Public Advisor's Office by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by postal mail to 505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco, CA 94102 by October 1, 2021.
Enclosed is a notice with information on the new area code and the recorded webcast, along with a map of the area now served by the 707 area code.
Please share this information with your constituents and encourage them to view the recorded webcast to ensure they are aware of the impending new area code overlay.
Jonathan Lakritz, Consumer Programs Manager Communications Division
The North Coast Opportunities Board of Directors conducted a legal “hearing” on their proposed 2022-2023 Community Action Plan for Lake and Mendocino Counties at their regularly scheduled meeting yesterday, June 23, 2021. [https://www.ncoinc.org/about-us/news/public-hearing-announcement/ — a link to the Community Action Plan (CAP) is found on that webpage.]
Former Mendocino County Supervisor John McCowen, a member of the NCO Board, dismissed most of my questions as “fishing for information.” Answers to the first three questions were provided by NCO Executive Director Patty Bruder as follows: Two seats are open on the Community Action Agency Board of Directors (not necessarily the same as the NCO Board of Directors, but the lines are blurred); staff within NCO is being trained on the ROMA system. “ROMA” stands for “Results-Oriented Management and Accountability.”
Additional information about the ROMA system can be found on the Community Action Partnership website: https://communityactionpartnership.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/Implementing-ROMA-Facilitator-Guide-_Final.pdf.
In any case, I was given the opportunity to address the questions during the public comment period on the agenda item, but yielded the remainder of my time after wrangling with Ms. Bruder over the original question of who represents the County of Lake in the CAA Board of Directors. (At first she professed not to know what I was referring to; some specific references recalled to her mind the legal requirement from the State Department of Community Services that funds the CAA, now to the tune of over $350,000 per year.)
Following the collapse of our short-lived stand-alone Lake County Community Action Agency, around 2010/2011, the then-local Board of Directors had delegated our “representation” on NCO’s CAA Board of Directors to a couple of trusted sycophants, and in the past few years the connection between our Board of Supervisors with the Community Action Agency disappeared entirely from the annual list of appointments to local “boards, committees, and commissions.”
Ms. Bruder of course insists that Lake County receives just as much help as Mendocino County does from the re-combined Community Action Agency programs, and that “Hope Rising” is a legitimate organization, both claims I personally dispute.
CATCH OF THE DAY, June 24, 2021
KYLE BRACKETT, Willits. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, disobeying court order, failure to appear.
GILVERTO CRUZ-RAMIREZ, Oakland/Ukiah. DUI, no license.
JASON DIAMOND, Ukiah. DUI, no license, probation revocation.
JARED DONNELLY, Ukiah. Domestic abuse.
ALICIA ELLIOTT, Ukiah. Parole violation. (Frequent flyer.)
MATTHEW FAUST, Ukiah. Failure to appear. (Frequent flyer.)
SEAN FLINTON, Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)
MARCIE FRISBY, Oakdale/Ukiah. DUI, child endangerment.
LUIS MANZO-GARCIA, Ukiah. Domestic abuse, protective order violation.
MARIO PONTELLO, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
ALEXANDER RAMIREZ, Fort Bragg. Probation violation.
BENJAMIN RAU, Potter Valley. Suspended license for DUI, probation revocation.
VANESSA WILKINS, Eureka/Ukiah. Controlled substance, under influence, paraphernalia.
JASON WOLFE, Fort Bragg. Fugitive from justice.
CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE PASSES SELF-SERVING SHAM BUDGET
by Dan Walters
The Legislature’s Democratic supermajority put on something of a show as they pretended to pass a new state budget.
There were floor speeches, formal roll call votes and a deluge of self-congratulatory statements after the day’s activities.
“The budget we’re sending to Governor Newsom reflects responsible budgeting as the Legislature’s top priority and makes vital investments in California’s future,” Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon and Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins said in a post-session statement.
However, it was just a sham driven by the state constitution’s requirement that legislators pass a budget by June 15 or see their salaries suspended.
Republican Sen. James Nielsen captured the situation when he said, “This is a fake budget. It’s a feel-good budget. It’s a let-us-get-paid budget. But what we’re voting on is not going to be the budget.”
It’s not going to be the budget because Rendon and Atkins still must settle disagreements with Gov. Gavin Newsom, not only on how much to spend but even how much revenue they have to spend.
The two budgets are perhaps 90 percent in agreement but in a spending plan that tops $200 billion, 10 percent is still a lot of money.
Monday’s charade caps decades of political wrangling over how state budgets should be drafted.
Until the early 1970s, budgets were typically written in secret by a few legislators and the governor’s office but that practice ended when one legislator, facing a tough re-election campaign, loaded up a budget with pork barrel projects for his district.
The legislator was stripped of his position, his budget was set aside and new, seemingly more transparent, procedures were adopted. Eventually, however, the process drifted back into secret negotiations between the governor and a “Big 5” of legislative leaders that included Republicans because the budget required two-thirds votes for enactment.
A decade ago, the Big 5 became the Big 3, excluding Republicans, after voters approved a 2010 ballot measure, largely sponsored by public employee unions, that reduced the vote needed to pass a budget to a simple majority.
Proposition 25’s sponsors cited months-long delays in passing budgets during Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger’s governorship as a rationale and included the threat of legislators’ losing their salaries to make it more attractive to voters.
The revised system had its first test in 2011, the first year of Jerry Brown’s second governorship. The Legislature sent a budget to Brown and he vetoed it, declaring it to be unconstitutionally unbalanced.
Then-Controller John Chiang backed Brown by suspending legislators’ salaries. The Legislature sued and won a judicial declaration that only the Legislature itself could determine whether the June 15 deadline had been met.
Legislators were thus empowered to pass what they deemed to be a budget bill by June 15, even though — as is happening this year — it may not be a finished product.
Proposition 25 contained another piece of procedural mischief, allowing any bill the Legislature declared to be connected to the budget to also be enacted with simple majority votes. Thus, budget “trailer bills” often became vehicles for major changes in state policy without full committee hearings and other traditional exposure.
The misuse of trailer bills sparked another ballot measure in 2016, Proposition 54, requiring that bills be in print — and available for public viewing — for at least 72 hours before enactment. It didn’t stop the procedural abuses, but at least made them more obvious.
Newsom and legislators will eventually settle their differences, but the complete budget picture will not emerge for weeks and even months as trailer bills and budget modification measures dribble out of the Capitol.
(Dan Walters has been a journalist for nearly 60 years, spending all but a few of those years working for California newspapers.)
RIPPING UP A NEW ROAD
Let’s say you hired a contractor to build a very nice home. The day you were to move in, as the house appeared complete and looked great, you found that the contractor had ripped up the floors, removed the sheetrock and gutted the attic. After it was done.
Now, take a ride from Healdsburg to Cloverdale. You will be traveling over one stretch of Highway 101 that is only two years old, and the next 8 miles is less than one year old. About 16 miles total. You may notice at least 12 places where the new road has been ripped up, storm drains installed under the new pavement, and repaved with a rough transition of concrete. Did Caltrans not know that this storm drainage was needed before spending many millions to repave the 16 miles?
Come on, we deserve better.
To the Editor:
We all live in dual universes. We all have split personalities. We are all in the closet about something.
We all have secrets.
We are all in the closet.
Some of us aren't out about our sexuality. Some are secretly depressed. Some of us live lives of quiet desperation in unhappy marriages.
Some of us cheated on our spouses. Some won't admit they just weren't cut out for parenthood and failed their kids.
Some are alcoholics.
Some of us declared bankruptcy. Some are unemployed or underemployed. Some of us are one paycheck away from homelessness.
Some of us committed fraud to succeed. Some did "whatever it took" to succeed. Some cheat on their taxes.
The slipperiness of truth, the perils of any relationship, the ethical choices that we are constantly called to make define us as humans.
Human frailty is the currency in which we trade. And self-interest will always remain our animating impulse.
Except for when we are on the psychoanalyst's couch, we all resist the merciless examination of self.
As I said, we all have secrets.
We are all in the closet.
So let us congratulate Carl Nassib for his honesty and courage, and move on to the next breaking news story of the day.
Carl Nassib said it best: Why make a big deal? I'm just gay. It should be no big deal.
THE CRV SCAM
Attention CalRecycle representative,
Greetings and good day! In my area, Humboldt and Trinity counties, there is not a single CRV buyback center in operation, and there is no clear communication from BigFoot recycling centers in Shasta County, which is the monopoly chain in that county and too far to show up unannounced with a truck load of recycling and be turned away. This unfortunate development is akin to money being taken from me and many other community members. The promise to buyback is assumed by you accepting deposit payment, and the promise has been broken for the past year and a half. This is unacceptable; the money I lended to you in the form of CRV deposits is being withheld unlawfully. Your obligation to payback my money in the form of CRV bottle /can deposits is being neglected.
If I am required to drive a round-trip of 300 miles, as would be the case if I am forced to drive to Redding in Shasta County, I would like to get compensated as such, as my money that has gone into the buyback program is otherwise unavailable to me. To remedy this situation immediately, I ask that the closest recycling center is located near my zipcode of 95521, and an appointment be made if further than a 60 mile drive to said location. Also, if further than 60 miles away, I ask that I be compensated the GSA rate of $0.575/ mile be paid on top of the GSA rate for a half-day meal, as in essence I will be a private contractor working for you so that your obligation can be met and payment can be received in full, including operating expenditures to help you meet your obligation. It is necessary to be able to recycle up to 100 pounds of aluminum and each type of plastic, as well as up to 1,000 pounds of glass. While my numbers are not anywhere near this mark, I need to ensure I can drop off all that I bring.
CalRecycle’s response locally has been to inform that grocery stores and pharmacies are supposed to offer recycling services, though they won’t take more than 50 cans; most claim they are not offering recycling services in clear denial of your organization’s claims. Of note, most people in my area are rural and it is not feasible to drive 120 miles round-trip to recycle 50 cans per day, as it costs $20-30 in gas to gain $2.50, though most groceries and pharmacies in Humboldt and surrounding counties are not paying out anyway. Proof of this has already been obtained. Instead, many are opting to pay the $100/day fine your organization is levying upon said business, with no clear benefit to the thousands of people paying the cost of mismanagement on an epic scale.
If my request is denied, further action will be pursued until either: 1, You open recycling centers and ensure they can be profitable in the tri-county area aforementioned, 2, You do as requested in this email, locate a facility near zip code 95521, and if further than 60 miles one-way ensure it is open and will accept pre-sorted recyclables in clean condition, 3, cite a plan of action in the near immediate future with a clear intention of meeting your obligation of payment on my deposits, or 4: abolish the CRV deposit, locally and/or state wide, until a clear path forward is proven to meet your responsibilities; and in the meantime pay all bottle deposits due until that time occurs. Further action may consist of publishing this email on local news outlets, follow-up emails, or class action lawsuits, or all of the above.
Thank you for your consideration of this matter. Sincerely,
THE FOOL ON THE HILL
Day after day, alone on a hill
The man with the foolish grin
Is keeping perfectly still
But nobody wants to know him
They can see that he's just a fool
And he never gives an answer
But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round
Well on the way, head in a cloud
The man of a thousand voices
Talking perfectly loud
But nobody ever hears him
Or the sound he appears to make
And he never seems to notice
But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round
And nobody seems to like him
They can tell what he wants to do
And he never shows his feelings
But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round
Ohh oh-oh-oh-oh ohh-oh-oh
Round and round and round and round and round
He never listens to them
He knows that they're the fool
They don't like him
The fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round
— Paul McCartney
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
When I die and (hopefully) go to Heaven and can ask God just one question (I have hundreds), I would say, “During the 2020 Covid 19 pandemic, what percentage of U.S. doctors were mindless, cowardly twits out to just go along and not question any authority in order to get checks?”.
God says, “82%”. And my reply, “I knew it!!!”
Then God says, “But you are still dead.”
WHY CORPORATE DEMOCRATS Are Desperately Trying to Keep Nina Turner Out of Congress
by Norman Solomon
When Hillary Clinton endorsed Nina Turner’s main opponent last week, it was much more than just an attempt to boost a corporate Democrat. Clinton’s praise for candidate Shontel Brown was almost beside the point. Like other power brokers and the big-money PACs now trying to sway the special election for a vacant congressional seat in northeast Ohio, Clinton is doing what she can to keep the deeply progressive Turner out of Congress.
Time is short. Polling shows Turner with a big lead, early voting begins in two weeks, and Election Day is August 3. What scares the political establishment is what energizes her supporters: She won’t back down when social justice is at stake.
That reality was clearly audible Tuesday night during the first debate of the campaign, sponsored by the City Club of Cleveland. “I am running to be a voice for change, to uplift the downtrodden, including the poor, the working poor and the barely middle class,” Turner began. “You send me to Congress, I’m going to make sure that we tax the wealthy, make them pay their fair share, and to center the people who need it the most in this district.”
The contrast was sharp with Brown, who chairs the Democratic Party in populous Cuyahoga County. The discussion of healthcare was typical: Brown voiced a preference for a “public option,” but Turner strongly advocated Medicare for All while calling the current healthcare situation “absurd” and “asinine.” Brown sounded content to tinker with the status quo. Turner flatly declared: “The employer-based system, the commodification of healthcare, does not work in the United States of America. Almost 100 million people are either underinsured or uninsured right now.”
After Brown emphasized that “we have to be able to compromise so we can get some things done,” Turner closed with a jab at those eager to block the momentum of her campaign <https://ninaturner.com/> for Congress: “You need to have somebody that will lead this community, who does have a vision and understands being a partner does not mean being a puppet, that working with does not mean acquiescing to. You will always know whose side I am on.”
That’s exactly the problem for the party establishment. Its backers know full well whose side Turner is on.
And so, the attacks are escalating from Brown’s campaign. It sent out a mailer -- complete with an out-of-focus photo of Turner, made to look lurid -- under the headline “Nina Turner Opposed President Biden and Worked Against Democrats.” A more accurate headline would have been: “Nina Turner Supported Senator Sanders and Worked Against Neoliberal Democrats.” The Brown campaign’s first TV ad, which began airing last month, features her saying that she will “work with Joe Biden— that’s different than Nina Turner.”
A former editorial page editor of the Cleveland *Plain Dealer, *Brent Larkin, wrote “Brown will be a well-financed candidate with deep-pocketed supporters who aren’t afraid to play rough. That’s because Turner can’t be beaten unless opponents plant seeds of doubt about her fitness, convincing voters her harsh criticisms of President Joe Biden would make it impossible for her to get things done for her community. The notion that Biden might punish a constituency important to him because Turner represents that constituency in Congress is far-fetched. During the 2020 campaign, Sen. Kamala Harris was bitterly critical of Biden’s civil rights record. Nevertheless, Biden chose her as his running mate, effectively rewarding her with the vice presidency.”
Brown’s backers are eager to “play rough” because corporate power is at issue. It’s not only that Turner crisscrossed the nation, speaking eloquently in support of both of Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaigns, serving as a national co-chair during the last one. Powerful backers of the Democratic Party’s top leadership -- cozy and enmeshed with corporate America and the military-industrial complex -- realize that “Congresswoman Nina Turner (D-OH)” would significantly increase the leverage of genuinely progressive members of the House. For the Clinton wing of the party, that would be a frigging nightmare.
As the marquee anti-Turner candidate, Brown is leaving the more blatant smears to outfits like the “Protecting Our Vote PAC” (which spent $41,998 in the last cycle in an unsuccessful attempt to defeat now-Congresswoman Cori Bush). The super PAC has released a scurrilous attack ad via Facebook, telling viewers to “Vote for Shontel Brown” -- while claiming among other things that “Nina Turner is not a real Democrat, you can’t trust her,” and she “has no respect for anyone, not even our president,” and “Nina Turner is all about Nina, she doesn’t care about Ohio, she doesn’t care about getting things done, all she cares about is making noise.”
Though some see her only as a firebrand speaker at political rallies, I was in dozens of meetings with her last year when her patient hard work was equally inspiring as she put in long hours with humility, compassion and dedication. I saw her as the real deal when we were colleagues for several months while she worked with RootsAction.org as a strategic delegate advisor for the 2020 Democratic National Convention.
Recalling how she works behind the scenes, I can understand even more why the party establishment is so anxious to block her entry to Congress. While Turner is a seasoned legislator -- she served on the Cleveland City Council and in the Ohio Senate for a total of nine years — she’s committed to the meticulous and sometimes tedious work of organizing and coalition-building that, in the long run, can make all the difference for progressive change.
The day that Clinton made her endorsement of Brown, a tweet from Turner served as an apt retort. Saying that she was “proud to be running a campaign focused on the issues that matter most to working people,” Turner added: “My district knows all too well that the politics of yesterday are incapable of delivering the change we desperately need.”
The next day, underscoring wide awareness that the corporate “politics of yesterday” must not be the politics of tomorrow, the Turner campaign announced that it raised six figures in under 24 hours; Clinton’s intervention had been a blessing. Overall, at last report, the Turner campaign has received donations from 54,000 different individuals, with contributions averaging $27.
Dollars pouring into Shontel Brown’s campaign are coming from a very different political and social universe. As the *Daily Poster* reported this week, “business-friendly Democrats” and Washington lobbyists for huge corporations — including “Big Oil, Big Pharma, Fox News and Wall Street” -- are providing big bucks to stop Nina Turner from becoming Congresswoman Turner.
Bernie Sanders described the situation clearly in a recent mass email: “The political establishment and their super PACs are lining up behind Nina’s opponent during the critical final weeks of this primary. And you can bet they will do and spend whatever it takes to try and defeat her.”
(Norman Solomon is the national director of RootsAction.org and the author of many books including ‘War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.’ He was a Bernie Sanders delegate from California to the 2016 and 2020 Democratic National Conventions. Solomon is the founder and executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy.)
FIVE FAILED FUEL RODS at Franco/China’s Taishan Unit 1
Chinese nuclear authorities are disputing a June 14, 2021 CNN news service story that reported the world’s first operational Evolutionary Power Reactor (EPR) eighty-five miles west of Hong Kong experienced a radioactive leak of noble gases (principally radioactive xenon and krypton) from the reactor’s cooling water system. China claims the radioactive release from leaking fuel rods was contained within the reactor's closed-cycle cooling system and did not occur in the atmosphere. However, China admits that the state-run 1750 megawatt-electric Taishan Unit 1 reactor, the new French-designed pressurized water reactor, did experience fuel damage to the core following startup from its first refueling operation.
Taishan-1 first started producing power in December 2019 on 18 to 24 month operating cycles. CNN had further reported that a U.S. contractor to Framatome, the reactor supplier to the designer and France-owned power company, Electricite de France (EdF), had contacted the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) seeking an exemption from export restrictions to warn of an “imminent radiological threat” at the reactor. Throughout the event’s disclosure, Taishan-1 has remained operational supplying electricity to the grid. Multiple news sources reported that Chinese reactor authorities raised the “allowable” limits of radioactivity in the reactor coolant system above the design’s operational specifications to keep the reactor from a technical shut down.
The cause of the increase in radioactivity is not precisely known but believed to have occurred through tiny cracks in at least five or more of the tens of thousands of enriched uranium fuel rods in Unit 1’s reactor core.
The nuclear trade journal Platts Inside NRC reported on the event June 21, 2021, quoting Martial Chateau, a technical advisor to the French antinuclear nongovernmental organization, Sortir du Nucleaire, to say, “’We know there is a small crack in the tubes containing the fuel elements in the primary circuit. We don’t know what caused it. It could have been a foreign object like a screw or a bolt circulating in the water under pressure. Or it could be a design fault,’ Chateau said. ‘There have been incidents like this in France.’" There could be more fuel failure events if the failure is due to the loss of quality control of the fuel fabrication process. According to Chateau, Taishan-1 could still face an extensive shut down to fix more complicated defects should they come to light.
There are four other EPR projects still under construction around the world, each billions of dollars over budget and many years behind schedule, at Flamanville-3 (northern France), Olkiluoto-3 (Finland) and two units at Hinkley Point-C (western England). A joint application to the the NRC by EdF and US-based Constellation Energy to construct a "reference" EPR reactor on the Chesapeake Bay in Lusby, MD for six more units across the US was withdrawn by EdF in 2013 following a successful legal intervention by a coalition of antinuclear groups that included Beyond Nuclear.
Ironically, just two days after revelations of the Taishan-1 reactor fuel failure event, multiple news sources reported that one of China’s top nuclear scientists died after a suspicious accident. Professor Zhang Zhijian, former vice-president of Harbin Engineering University (HEU), died after “falling off a building.” Professor Zhang was a top nuclear scientist at HEU College of Nuclear Science and Technology and served as Vice President of the Chinese Nuclear Society. HEU is one of two Chinese universities recognized with close ties to China's nuclear weapons program and banned from receiving advanced computer software from the United States.