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Mendocino County Today: January 21, 2014



Everyone knows where they were, etc., when JFK was shot. I'm interested in your stories of where you were, what happened, what you thought, etc., when MLK was shot.

As an example, here's mine.

(Also sending this to people who weren't around then, maybe they'd be interested.)

I was a “student” at Duquesne U in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The “campus” of mud and old warehouses sat on a bluff near the Triangle, above the Monongahela River. The south and west sides were precipitous. The east side was a quiet Italian/”ethnic” area, kept that way by the Pittsburgh mafia. The north side, the Hill District, a crown of land above the triangle, was the black neighborhood. The school and the Hill District were separated by Forbes and 5th Avenues, the old roads east, a melting-pot honkytonk area of cheap bars, streetwalkers, and slums.

When the news spread that King had been murdered, the black residents started rioting and burning their neighborhood that they owned little of. This immediately got out of control of the local cops and fire department, and we watched the Hill burn from the dormitory windows all afternoon. Oddly, there was no curfew, or we ignored it, so a bunch of us went down Bluff St. and holed up in a basement apartment listening to gunshots and running feet all night. In the morning a big convoy of Army trucks carrying the National Guard rolled up the Boulevard of the Allies and occupied the area. I walked back to the U past a burning gas station and crowds of soldiers spreading out. They established themselves along Forbes and 5th, then moved up to the Hill District and suppressed the riot. They were on the streets for a few more days, then left.

Most people I knew were pissed off about the murder but some of the more out racists said the usual racist stuff. Nothing much seemed to change. The city went back to “normal.” But 1968 was a year we don't need more of, with Tet, King, then several weeks later RFK was killed, all by the usual “lone nut,” nudge nudge, wink wink. To cap it all off, Richard Nixon got elected President in the fall. That's enough!

Jay Williamson, Santa Rosa



Ok everyone,

Understand, the FCC license renewal has already been withheld due to a petition to deny written by Sandra Patterson, as well as at least one other informal objection written by Shelia Dawn Tracy.  Apparently, there were other informal objections filed  last October as well, but I have not personally verified this.  The deadline for these filings was Nov. 1, one month before KZYX was to file for the renewal on Dec. 1.  As a result of these filings, the liscence renewal has been upheld and a review is scheduled by an FCC lawyer sometime in the next few months.

I have asked for both these letters, as I knew they had been sent.  While Sandra's letter was relatively benign, mostly complaining about programming,  Shelia's letter includes several points about the election process as well as revealing the questionable absence of certain documentation about programming policy from the corporate documentation passed out to board members for the last few years.  I am afraid the information in this letter may cause the stations license to be revoked if nothing is done.

As far as I can tell, Mr. Sakowicz's idea is to advocate for letters written to the FCC explaining that these policy lapses are the result of bad management, not board malfeasance, in the hopes that the station's license will be reinstated with the condition that their be a change in management.  The concern here is, if the FCC determines that the board itself has been unscrupulous, then the license will get pulled, and KZYX will be forced off the air.

Doug McKenty, Elk

ED NOTE: We seriously doubt that the FCC would deny KZYX a license renewal based on a mere pair of complaints, however valid. It's management's silly and self-defeating secrecy policy that keeps getting them in trouble. Sheila Dawn's objections could also be simple incompetence on Coate and Aigner's part, and don't amount to anything that can't be fixed. It would help the station to have a capable board of directors, but Sakowicz is the only director who seems to care about doing the right thing.


AT THE TUESDAY, JANUARY 7, 2014, MEETING of the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, John Pinches, newly seated as Board Chair, inserted a refreshing note of reality into an otherwise self-congratulatory parade of local officials who seemed to think the tardy declaration of a water emergency was as good as 40 inches of rain.


HOLLY MADRIGAL, current Mayor of Willits, and the leading candidate to replace Pinches as Third District supervisor, set the unreal tone. “I want to thank Carre [Supervisor Brown] for bringing this forward. I know that Willits and Mendocino County were some of the first to raise our voices, but we are not going to be the last, I do know that. And maybe this will add the car washing effect of causing rain to fall from the sky, as to declaring this. But I think if there is an upside to this it is that we are getting our ducks in order. We are making a plan for emergencies [the Board has no plan whatsoever] that — unfortunately drought emergencies are not the only ones that we are going to experience…”

Madrigal rambled on to say she was concerned about frozen water pipes because if they crack water is lost, a fact most of us are aware of.

Madrigal concluded, “…So I just want to thank both our residents and I know the residents of the county to make sure that you all know that we are absolutely willing to participate in a coordinated conservation effort if one is drafted.”

Sweeney at Work
Sweeney at Work

COUNTY GARBAGE CZAR MIKE SWEENEY made the sensible suggestion that the Supervisors call their emergency water committed something more specific than “Ad Hoc Committee.” “I think the importance and the role of this committee is going to involve public support and awareness and you might consider naming it something other than ‘ad hoc’ which is sort of a lightweight name. I think you have a clear indication that many of the parties, and many of the stakeholders, want to be intimately involved in this which is of course essential, so perhaps something like ‘Drought Emergency Council’.”


THEN IT WAS TIME FOR SUPERVISOR JOHN PINCHES. A lonely and ignored advocate for pre-emptive water policies all his twelve years in office. “I have a lot to say on this issue. I've been working on trying to get people excited in his county about another water supply for my whole political career. I mean, I feel a little bit distressed, like Redwood Valley and the city of Willits, I proposed projects like Dos Rios and Scout Lake and nobody was interested! Nobody was interested!”

Pinches has suggested siphoning off a tiny proportion of the Eel River's winter flow and storing it at Dos Rios for low rain years. And he has repeatedly pled for converting the Boy Scout Lake near Willits to a municipal water supply. And he has famously agitated for a more equitable distribution arrangement with Sonoma County for the water in Lake Mendocino.

“For over 50 years,” Pinches continued, “our water policy in this county is that we get excited because we have all these drought emergencies and everything and we pass around all these pieces of paper but it brings nothing.

“Then all of a sudden it rains and everybody says, Okay, things are happy! Let's wait until our next drought emergency. It's ridiculous. The state is the same way. They have a bigger problem than we do, but it’s the same situation. The governor appoints a task force. Folks! We have to come up with more water supply. It's plain and simple! Any third grader in Mendocino County can figure it out! We got Lake Mendocino out here that everybody's focused on and 87% of the water is owned by Sonoma County. And another big thing that most people overlook is the diversion that brings the Eel River water through the tunnel into Lake Mendocino has been cut back about 40% in the last few years!

“So we don't even have the water that we did a few years ago! Figure it out! You can come up with resolutions and pieces of paper and everything, but somebody has to get serious about getting together and building a water supply! I don't care if it's deep wells, or if it’s storage or whether it’s Scout Lake or whatever the project may be. But until we come together and work on supply…”

Pinches went on to say that Redwood Valley may have to consider a deal with Lake County “to get a little water out of Blue Lake, which is completely full and truck it into Redwood Valley. Otherwise people are going to have to start ordering porta-potties and forget about washing and taking showers and everything. There's a big difference between being low on water and being out.

“We should have been doing these water restrictions months ago! Not here in the middle of January! I mean, this is crazy! I'm a little bit critical of all of us! We as leaders have done no planning. Not that we've done poor planning, we've done no planning! And now were all sitting here with our hands in the air saying what will we do next? Oh — Pass around a bunch of pieces of paper. If we are serious about getting together and creating a committee, and it has to be a serious committee, not just some quasi-ad-hoc committee — and get the parties involved — Brooktrails, and Redwood Valley, and Willits — the parties that are most affected…”

SUPERVISOR JOHN MCCOWEN: “I don't disagree with a lot of your remarks.”

Pinches, taking a drink of water, “I feel guilty about drinking this water.”


McCowen: We will put a surcharge on it. This board could have taken action with a little bit of foresight maybe a couple of months ago. Some of the districts and cities have been taking measures. Notwithstanding the reality of everything you said, I think adopting this resolution today still make sense and we've heard from some of the stakeholders that it will help them in going to their constituents and explaining why it's necessary to put conservation measures in place, strong conservation measures. So it still makes sense to go forward with this resolution.” …

PINCHES: “I'd like to add that this Board made a deal with Scout Lake up east of Willits. We went up there and made a deal with the Boy Scouts of America, the owner. We paid for the design. We have the raising of that lake designed and ready to go.... Keep in mind the county of Mendocino is not a water purveyor. We don't sell water to anybody. That's up to the water districts and municipalities. But we went ahead and spent the money to do that, completely designed a project to raise the Scout Lake which would have put water by gravity flow into Willits or Redwood Valley or even Brooktrails, and we got that done and it just stopped because nobody was interested. Nobody needed the water. Everybody said, Oh, we’re fine now. It rained. We don't need any water. So I kind of put the blame on you [referring to some politicians and officials in the audience]. It could be argued, why should the taxpayers of the Coast and South Coast spend money on designing the project, Scout Lake, when they were not going to benefit? But they did. My colleagues went along with that. We have the designs and everything for raising Scout Lake to supply gravity flow water to those areas. The reason it stopped — it didn't stop because there was no money. It stopped because there was no interest! The people who would benefit were not interested! So you cannot really say that this Board of Supervisors has done nothing. We have done a lot. That project is there. It's designed, ready to go. Nothing has changed. The only thing that's changed is that it still ain't raining. But it's really up to the entities out there who would benefit, Willits, Redwood Valley, Brooktrails, to come forward and say Yes, let's move this down the road. Or we can just go home today and pass the papers around and say well, Let's just wait till the next rain.”

HOLLY MADRIGAL RETURNED TO THE PODIUM: “I just want to disagree somewhat on your recollection of history as far as the Scout Lake project. Willits is supportive of that project and the County was running with it and then the County was no longer running with it.”

Pinches: “The reason the County stopped is because Willits showed no interest in it whatsoever. I was told by your former mayor that they didn't need the water — their lakes were plenty full.”

Madrigal: “I would disagree. However, to this topic of conversation, we have studies that say that a 1977 style drought year which everything is saying it might be worse than that at this point, surface water is not going to be sufficient for our emergency needs. The city of Willits has been drafting plans to look at Scout Lake; that's what we did in the past. I have been in communication with the Boy Scouts who said, We will not let the city of Willits go dry on our watch. They want to be good neighbors to us. However, it still brings issues with surface water treatment. We have Jesse here who can speak more to the style and method of surface water treatment. But we are most likely going to be voting tomorrow night for our emergency plan. We are going to have to do wells most likely. The City of Willits has wells which some of our neighbors are not as fortunate. If Brooktrails runs out they are really up a creek in that area. Just to clarify that, the city of Willits has been planning for emergency, this emergency, we've been planning it for some time and asking our residents to conserve for some time, but most likely the situation we are in now will probably have to be doing wells because it's the most cost-effective and frankly the most reliable”.


SUPERVISOR DAN HAMBURG: “It's very advisable that we move forward with this committee. I don't know whether we should have done it two months ago. We can't do anything about that. But we can act today and I hope we will do that and I appreciate you and supervisor Brown bringing this forward. I think it's really incumbent on us to take this action because we seem to be in a new normal. I haven't been around here very long, only 40 years, but I've never seen this kind of condition. Even on my own property, I've never seen my own individual water supply so low, particularly this time of the year of no rain in sight. And 2013 was basically a wipeout for rain. I don't know, I think it was about 7 inches for the entire calendar year. Something like that. The last major rain we as we had was over a year ago in December of 2012.” …


“Nobody has mentioned the elephant in the room which is climate change, but I think it is the reality. I think it's sort of like when we talk about the economy and when is the economy going to come back? Some people say this is the new normal and the new normal is a very slow growth economy. I'm afraid the new normal is very low rainfall climate. It's not just Mendocino County. This is 80% of California and this is also all across the United States! Look at the drought maps! Look at the state of Texas and other parts of the country where there hasn't been much rain for years! Very abnormal situations. So this is not something that is going to be addressed simply but it is something that we as elected officials have to address and I really hope the board will move forward with the recommended action today.”

PINCHES: “I certainly support the resolution, although I think it means nothing other than maybe some help from the state at some point in the future. But I think it has to be expanded to include the affected players like Willits and Redwood Valley and Brooktrails who should be on the committee. I am reluctant to serve on this committee for the simple reason that this is going to be — if we are going to be serious about doing something about our water supply in Mendocino County, it is going to take more than this next calendar year. I'm not going to be here after this year so we have to get some people interested in water in his county. What I'm looking from my four colleagues — Carre [Brown] has certainly expressed her interest because part of her district is in dire straits. But it's going to take some real step up commitment from my colleagues here to take this on because whether you are talking about financing a water project and going forward, it is going to be something that's going to be ongoing more than this calendar year. I hope that if we start getting a gullywasher tomorrow morning and it rains ten inches tomorrow night that that still wouldn't stop the process of looking for a better water supply for the north end of this County. All my knowledge and information I have are out there. I'm willing to do what I can. But I would like to see at least two of my colleagues get involved in this. I know it's hard because of the Brown Act to put three board members on a committee. But this is an unprecedented situation and we better start dealing with it because for the last 50 years we have just stuck our heads in the sand and said it’ll probably rain next week at. And it probably has. Maybe it'll rain next week. But this is the most serious issue that I've seen in my whole political history and here we are in the middle of January of 2014 and our water situation with the 40% cutback in the diversion in the last few years, we've got a hell of a lot less water than we did a decade ago.”


SUPERVISOR DAN GJERDE: “The Coast definitely is in a drought also. I'm sure the city of Fort Bragg would want to participate in this because they are dealing with this also. They have not yet announced a water emergency but I suspect it will come very soon. Their water supply is important for people who live outside the city because as you may know there are some water purveyors on the coast who will go and buy water wholesale from the city and sell it to people on the north coast, in Mendocino, and Casper, and other places on the coast who will buy water from the city of Fort Bragg when it's available. The city has a water tank on the east end of town on Highway 20 and it cannot sit there stagnant, so sometimes they will sell that if there is a little margin there. But the city does not really have extra water. The city of Fort Bragg is working on two projects, two small projects, to improve its water supply: they are trying to buy the Highway 20 property that the Rec district owned and needs to sell that was originally planned as a regional park and there is a known significant amount of water that site and the city, if it buys that property at a reasonable price, would use it as a series of wells to provide water to the city. The city is also moving ahead with a small pond as a secondary water supply.”

PINCHES: “The goal of this committee should be to come up with the future of our water supply in Mendocino County, not just something that will carry us over until it rains again next year. Before we had these moratoriums and the last two drought years we have had a lot of people who couldn't even get a water hookup.... Why don't we at least try to come up with a water supply that will meet the needs of Mendocino County. It would be great if we had enough water supply to sell to somebody who needs it. Let's at least come up with a plan that fits our needs. We are not talking about growth here. Growth of Mendocino County hasn’t been at 2% for the last three decades. We are just talking about just enough to meet our local needs. I don't see anybody wasting water out there. That has to be the goal of this committee! It's a real serious project.” …

“Also, if this county continues to focus on Lake Mendocino as its sole water supply we are never going to get anywhere. Because if you raise Lake Mendocino, Sonoma County is still going to get more than 80% of the water there. The problem with Lake Mendocino is that it was never kept full in the first place so why would you build a bigger house tank for your water supply if you can't keep the one you have now full? We need to look throughout this county to create another water supply that will meet our needs because the focus always drifts back to Lake Mendocino and let's see what we can do about Lake Mendocino. Some people say let's raise it. Some people say let's dredge it. The fact of the matter is that Sonoma County controls it. We ain't going to change that. Let's look elsewhere. This county is a big county. We have a lot of dry canyons and a lot of places where you can drill wells and whatnot. But if you stay focused on Lake Mendocino I think would mean that somebody will be sitting here 50 years from now with the same dilemma. Lake Mendocino is a done deal, let's look elsewhere so we can have our own water supply. We don't need to share it with the thirsty counties to the south.”

MCCOWEN: “Part of the problem with Lake Mendocino is that it is managed on a year-to-year basis currently. If the dam was raised it would allow it to be managed on at least a two-year basis and we wouldn't find — part of what happened this year, we dumped a lot of water, or the Army Corps dumped a lot of water, to prepare for rains that never came because it's primarily a flood control reservoir.”

PINCHES: “Lake Mendocino is managed by people who don't have the interest of Mendocino County in mind. Whether it's the Corps of Engineers or the Sonoma County Water Agency, we need to get a water source that we control.”

AFTER MORE DISCUSSION about process, membership, how much and who to include in the resolution, and how it might be staffed by County employees who are already stretched thin, the Board voted unanimously to declare the resolution, appoint Supervisors Carre Brown and Dan Hamburg to it, and revisit the declaration on January 21 for renewal and possible expansion.



by Dan Bacher

The California Environmental Water Caucus on January 19 issued a press release commending the "emphasis on conservation" in Governor Brown's 20 point drought declaration, but criticizing five of the points as "wolves in sheep's clothing," particularly Directive 4 that directs state agencies to expedite the processing of water transfers and Directive 9 that effectively suspends the California Environmental Water Quality Act.

“This overreaching and throwing out the baby with the bath water in Directives 4, 5, 8, 9 and 10 is unnecessary when the real emphasis should be on permanent conservation at all levels – households, industry and agriculture” said Nick Di Croce, Facilitator of the Environmental Water Caucus. “The need for more conservation and greater efficiencies in water management should not result in abrogation of equally needed environmental safeguards benefitting both humans and other species, including fish."

Environmental groups, fishing organizations and consumer groups have also blasted the Governor for fast tracking his Bay Delta Conservation Plan to build the peripheral tunnels and promoting the expansion of water-polluting fracking when we are in an unprecedented drought.

“Governor Brown can’t make it rain, but he can put a moratorium on fracking and he can stop his tunnels project,” summed up Adam Scow, California Campaign Director of Food and Water Watch. “The Governor’s current water and energy policies will only worsen our current climate and water crisis.”

NOAA satellite photo of the snowpack in California and Nevada on January 13, 2013 compared to January 13, 2014.

Below is the January 19 news release from the California Environmental Water Caucus:

The Governor’s Drought Declaration 

“We live in an overreacting world”

“For every action, there is an unequal and opposite overreaction”

While the Environmental Water Caucus applauds the emphasis on conservation found in Governor Brown’s 20-point drought proclamation, we fear that the time worn clichés quoted above have relevance here. Buried in those 20 points are a few proverbial “wolves in sheep’s clothing”.

Directive 4 orders State agencies to “expedite” processing of water transfers. The danger in hurried water transfers is the risk of serious environmental damage on the seller’s end, such as replacing the transferred surface water with groundwater from an already badly stressed aquifer. Only careful advance environmental review can prevent that type of unintended consequence.

Directive 5 sounds innocent enough in ordering the State Board to allow consolidation of the places of use of waters of the State Water Project and the Central Valley Project.

SWP is supposed to serve urban Southern California and parts of Kern County. CVP is supposed to serve specified areas, mostly agriculture, in the San Joaquin Valley. In fact, Directive 5 would allow unimagined unintended consequences like allowing CVP water to be sent to Orange County to float the boats in Disneyland’s Pirates of the Caribbean ride.

Directive 8 could broadly expand the State Board’s ability to modify reservoir releases and water diversion limitations, supposedly to enable water to be conserved for later use. But the loose language would also allow modifications for earlier releases and diversions, which typically are sought by politically powerful economic interests such as the Westlands Water District.

Directive 9 is by far the most egregious example of overreaction, and this time with an intended consequence --- broad suspension of one of Governor Brown’s favorite whipping boys, the California Environmental Quality Act. It also suspends Water Code Section 13247, which requires all state entities to comply with water quality plans of the State Board.

Directive 10 should say that safe and adequate drinking water be made available for disadvantaged San Joaquin Valley and other agricultural communities.

“This overreaching and throwing out the baby with the bath water in Directives 4, 5, 8, 9 and 10 is unnecessary when the real emphasis should be on permanent conservation at all levels – households, industry and agriculture” said Nick Di Croce, Facilitator of the Environmental Water Caucus. “The need for more conservation and greater efficiencies in water management should not result in abrogation of equally needed environmental safeguards benefitting both humans and other species, including fish."


Nick Di Croce, Co-Facilitator, Environmental Water Caucus

troutnk [at], 805-688-7813

Conner Everts, Southern California Watershed Alliance

connere [at], (310) 804-6615

Bill Jennings, California Sportfishing Protection Alliance

deltakeep [at], 209-464-5067

The full text of the emergency proclamation is below:

A Proclamation Of A State Of Emergency

WHEREAS the State of California is experiencing record dry conditions, with 2014 projected to become the driest year on record; and

WHEREAS the state’s water supplies have dipped to alarming levels, indicated by: snowpack in California’s mountains is approximately 20 percent of the normal average for this date; California’s largest water reservoirs have very low water levels for this time of year; California’s major river systems, including the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, have significantly reduced surface water flows; and groundwater levels throughout the state have dropped significantly; and

WHEREAS dry conditions and lack of precipitation present urgent problems: drinking water supplies are at risk in many California communities; fewer crops can be cultivated and farmers’ long-term investments are put at risk; low-income communities heavily dependent on agricultural employment will suffer heightened unemployment and economic hardship; animals and plants that rely on California’s rivers, including many species in danger of extinction, will be threatened; and the risk of wildfires across the state is greatly increased; and

WHEREAS extremely dry conditions have persisted since 2012 and may continue beyond this year and more regularly into the future, based on scientific projections regarding the impact of climate change on California’s snowpack; and

WHEREAS the magnitude of the severe drought conditions presents threats beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment and facilities of any single local government and require the combined forces of a mutual aid region or regions to combat; and

WHEREAS under the provisions of section 8558(b) of the California Government Code, I find that conditions of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property exist in California due to water shortage and drought conditions with which local authority is unable to cope.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, EDMUND G. BROWN JR., Governor of the State of California, in accordance with the authority vested in me by the state Constitution and statutes, including the California Emergency Services Act, and in particular, section 8625 of the California Government Code HEREBY PROCLAIM A STATE OF EMERGENCY to exist in the State of California due to current drought conditions.


1.State agencies, led by the Department of Water Resources, will execute a statewide water conservation campaign to make all Californians aware of the drought and encourage personal actions to reduce water usage. This campaign will be built on the existing Save Our Water campaign ( and will coordinate with local water agencies. This campaign will call on Californians to reduce their water usage by 20 percent.

2.Local urban water suppliers and municipalities are called upon to implement their local water shortage contingency plans immediately in order to avoid or forestall outright restrictions that could become necessary later in the drought season. Local water agencies should also update their legally required urban and agricultural water management plans, which help plan for extended drought conditions. The Department of Water Resources will make the status of these updates publicly available.

3.State agencies, led by the Department of General Services, will immediately implement water use reduction plans for all state facilities. These plans will include immediate water conservation actions, and a moratorium will be placed on new, non-essential landscaping projects at state facilities and on state highways and roads.

4.The Department of Water Resources and the State Water Resources Control Board (Water Board) will expedite the processing of water transfers, as called for in Executive Order B-21-13. Voluntary water transfers from one water right holder to another enables water to flow where it is needed most.

5.The Water Board will immediately consider petitions requesting consolidation of the places of use of the State Water Project and Federal Central Valley Project, which would streamline water transfers and exchanges between water users within the areas of these two major water projects.

6.The Department of Water Resources and the Water Board will accelerate funding for water supply enhancement projects that can break ground this year and will explore if any existing unspent funds can be repurposed to enable near-term water conservation projects.

7.The Water Board will put water right holders throughout the state on notice that they may be directed to cease or reduce water diversions based on water shortages.

8.The Water Board will consider modifying requirements for reservoir releases or diversion limitations, where existing requirements were established to implement a water quality control plan. These changes would enable water to be conserved upstream later in the year to protect cold water pools for salmon and steelhead, maintain water supply, and improve water quality.

9.The Department of Water Resources and the Water Board will take actions necessary to make water immediately available, and, for purposes of carrying out directives 5 and 8, Water Code section 13247 and Division 13 (commencing with section 21000) of the Public Resources Code and regulations adopted pursuant to that Division are suspended on the basis that strict compliance with them will prevent, hinder, or delay the mitigation of the effects of the emergency. Department of Water Resources and the Water Board shall maintain on their websites a list of the activities or approvals for which these provisions are suspended.

10. The state’s Drinking Water Program will work with local agencies to identify communities that may run out of drinking water, and will provide technical and financial assistance to help these communities address drinking water shortages. It will also identify emergency interconnections that exist among the state’s public water systems that can help these threatened communities.

11. The Department of Water Resources will evaluate changing groundwater levels, land subsidence, and agricultural land fallowing as the drought persists and will provide a public update by April 30 that identifies groundwater basins with water shortages and details gaps in groundwater monitoring.

12. The Department of Water Resources will work with counties to help ensure that well drillers submit required groundwater well logs for newly constructed and deepened wells in a timely manner and the Office of Emergency Services will work with local authorities to enable early notice of areas experiencing problems with residential groundwater sources.

13. The California Department of Food and Agriculture will launch a one-stop website ( that provides timely updates on the drought and connects farmers to state and federal programs that they can access during the drought.

14. The Department of Fish and Wildlife will evaluate and manage the changing impacts of drought on threatened and endangered species and species of special concern, and develop contingency plans for state Wildlife Areas and Ecological Reserves to manage reduced water resources in the public interest.

15. The Department of Fish and Wildlife will work with the Fish and Game Commission, using the best available science, to determine whether restricting fishing in certain areas will become necessary and prudent as drought conditions persist.

16. The Department of Water Resources will take necessary actions to protect water quality and water supply in the Delta, including installation of temporary barriers or temporary water supply connections as needed, and will coordinate with the Department of Fish and Wildlife to minimize impacts to affected aquatic species.

17. The Department of Water Resources will refine its seasonal climate forecasting and drought prediction by advancing new methodologies piloted in 2013.

18. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection will hire additional seasonal firefighters to suppress wildfires and take other needed actions to protect public safety during this time of elevated fire risk.

19. The state’s Drought Task Force will immediately develop a plan that can be executed as needed to provide emergency food supplies, financial assistance, and unemployment services in communities that suffer high levels of unemployment from the drought.

20. The Drought Task Force will monitor drought impacts on a daily basis and will advise me of subsequent actions that should be taken if drought conditions worsen.

I FURTHER DIRECT that as soon as hereafter possible, this Proclamation be filed in the Office of the Secretary of State and that widespread publicity and notice be given of this Proclamation.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of California to be affixed this 17th day of January, 2014.

EDMUND G. BROWN JR., Governor of California


  1. izzy January 21, 2014

    Wishful thinking?

    Once again, Supervisor Pinches demonstrates his no B.S., common sense approach to a long-standing problem. He hasn’t actually said so publicly, but I wonder if his decision to bail out of Mendo.Ca.Gov is at least partially based on frustration. Maybe we should just dump the BOS, appoint him CEO, and get out of the way.

  2. Lazarus January 21, 2014

    I sure wish John Pinches would reconsider, if Holly Madrigal is the front runner……the crop must be woefully weak……..

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