- WHY I SUED RCHDC
- A BIG SENIOR THANKS
- KZYX & $
- HARE BRAINED SHOPPING CENTER
- THE HEADWATERS FUND
- SAVE THE UDJ REDWOODS
- VOTE FOR PAUL
- TED’S TOP TEN
- MEMO OF THE WEEK
- PACE EXPLAINED
- FATHOM’S FAVES
- PLEASE DON'T DO IT HERE
- HOW ABOUT IT, COATE?
WHY I SUED RCHDC
To the Editor:
I would like to share some insight on why I decided to file a lawsuit against Rural Communities Housing Development Corporation (RCHDC).
The lawsuit against RCHDC was settled on Dec. 5, 2012. The complaint (case # CV 1200607 CRB), was filed in the United States District Court Northern Division of California, San Francisco, by myself as a pro se plaintiff and former employee of RCHDC.
The complaint against RCHDC was for Racial Discrimination, Racial Harassment, Wrongful Termination, Violation of Title III of the Federal Wage Garnishment Act, and Failure to Reimburse Travel Expenses. The nineteen page complaint which included twenty six exhibits (several were self-authenticated) described numerous incidents were I was racially harassed and discriminated against.
I worked for RCHDC from Dec. 1,2008 to August 3, 2009, as a property manager of three apartment complexes in Lakeport, and during my employment I suffered racial discrimination and harassment (being African American) by RCHDC upper management.
I was terminated on August 3, 2009. I was in my office in Lakeport when RCHDC, director of property management and a regional manager entered and told me that I was fired effective immediately and to take my personal belongings and leave the premises. My employment status with RCHDC was not that of an at-will employee and RCHDC also violated its own policy and procedure when they terminated me:.
A motion to dismiss the complaint was filed on May 19, 2012, by RCHDCs defense attorney Michael G. Miller from the law offices of Perry, Johnson, Anderson, Miller & Moskowitz, out of Santa Rosa.
On July 13,2012, a hearing on the defendant's motion to dismiss was held before honorable Charles R. Breyer, Senior United States District Judge. Judge Breyer, in a bench ruling denied RCHDC motion to dismiss and assigned the case to a magistrate judge.
At a court-ordered settlement conference hearing held on Dec. 5, 2012, before Chief United States Magistrate Judge Maria-Elena James, a settlement was reached. Subsequently, Judge Breyer signed an order that the case be dismissed without prejudice.
This was one of the most overwhelming and difficult and thing that I have ever taken on. The overwhelming part was the legal language and the court preparation, because I am not an attorney. However, I had several things going for me with this lawsuit, my determination to right a wrong, the truth, the facts, documentation and support. I did solicit a few attorneys in Ukiah to take my case and the dialog with those attorneys is another chapter and this is not the appropriate time to discuss.
The difficult part was making the decision to file the lawsuit. You see, I moved to the greater Ukiah area in June of 1974 and from 1974 to 1989, I ignored the racial discrimination that I encountered. In 1989, I gave birth to a beautiful son (Dennis) and I knew that I could no longer ignore the discrimination because I had a child who would be raised in this community, but I was not quite sure what to do. I was later catapulted to the frontline when my brother (Larry) was attacked at Navarro beach by a group of guys carrying sticks and clubs chanting, "kill the niggers, kill the niggers." I realized I had to take action, so I and several community members started an annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance, which later became the Mendocino County Martin Luther King Jr. Organization (McMLK). MCMLK mission is to move beyond tolerance by enhancing the innate spirit of human kindness through events and projects.
In 2009 after the racial discrimination that I suffered during my employment at RCHDC, I realized that this level of discrimination had to be handled through the court system and that is exactly what I did.
A BIG SENIOR THANKS
THANK YOU from the AV Seniors!
80% of the Senior Center funding comes from our community through fundraisers and donations. And, so again, we send a heartfelt Thanks to our community for the success of the 9th annual Anderson Valley Crab Feed. Our bar and silent auction raffle featured wines donated by Angel Camp Vineyards, Baxter Winery, Bink Wines, Breggo Cellars, Brutocao Cellars, Claudia Springs Winery, Drew family Cellars, Elke Vineyards, Esterlina Vineyards, Ferrari-Carano, Four Friends, Goldeneye Winery, Handley Cellars, Harmonique, Husch Vineyards, Knez Winery, Lazy Creek Vineyards, Lula cellars, Navarro Vineyards, Phillips Hill Winery, Rhys Vineyards, Toulouse Vineyards, Witching Stick Wines, & beer donated by Anderson Valley Brewery. The food we served included wonderful french bread donated by Costeaux Bakery and lemons donated by General Produce.
In addition to the wines and beer, our other great silent auction and raffle items were donated by: Kirk Wilder, Larry Mailliard, Frank's Firewood, Sierra Nevada Music Festival, Boonville Hotel, Harvest Market, Ed and Gina Pardini, Mendo Mill, Eel River Fuels, Coke Distributors, Eagle Distributors, Amanda Hiatt, Rossi Hardware, Kelly Hiatt, Dave Kooyers, Rancheria Realty, AV Farm Supply, AV Market, Rookie To, All That Good Stuff, Boonville Chocolate shop, Judy Nelson, Fish Rock Farm Chicks, Mike Hudson, Mercantile, Gowans Oak Tree, Patrick Ford, Architectural Elements of AV, Redwood Drive-In, Jeff & JJ Wood Products & DBI.
The AV High School athletes and cheerleaders deserve a very special thanks — they did a fabulous job of serving & meeting the demands of all in a pleasant, efficient way! Other volunteers that deserve a special hand include: Sandy Nimmons, Mary and Neil Darling, Kim & Ed Morgan, Ken Good, Dan and Loretta Houck, Maryann Kinion, Shirley Hulbert, Rhett Pardini, Aly Morse, Judith Kooyers, Krissi Ford, Ellen & Mark Fontaine, Gina Pardini, Colette Hanns , Karen Hansen, Toni & Dale Wise, Lamiece Dawson, Jose Chavez, Modesto and Jacob Preciado, Jose and Angelina Perez, Tonio Perez. And Lemons Market, Rossi Hardware, AV Market and Laughing Dog Books supported with ticket sales. THANK YOU!
KZYX & $
To the Editor:
Someone just asked me: Since MCPB's policy is not to disclose individual salaries of staff — despite the fact that many other public radio stations do, in fact, disclose salaries (including KMUD) — what, then, is the budget line item for “total” salaries and benefits? In other words, what percent of last year's total income of $652,570 was spent on salaries and benefits?
Good question, especially for MCPB's Board of Directors.
Frankly, I couldn't answer that question. And that's a big problem. Not only is MCPB exclusionary — the Anderson Valley Advertiser banned, the New Settler Interview banned, KC Meadows and the Ukiah Daily Journal banned, volunteer radio show host and GMO activist Els Cooperrider banned, volunteer radio show host and hip hop DJ Johanna Schultz banned, respected newsperson Christina Aanestad banned, news director Dave Brooksher banned, volunteer radio show host and alternative health activist Dr. Richard Miller banned, former Board Director and popular radio show host Doug McKenty banned, public comment and free speech on “Open Lines” banned, etc. — MCPB is also obscure in its financial reporting.
If this lack of transparency and accountability were to happen in government, we would vote the bums out of office.
And yet, here we are at a presumably “public,” public radio station struggling with transparency and accountability.
Below is a comment I recently posted to KZYXtallk@lists.mcn.org. This listserv, incidentally, is the discussion board for many of the over 100 members of “KZYX Members for Change.”
* * *
It's my opinion that MCPB's finances are designed to be confusing by design. For example, just try separating out what's spent on salaries and benefits for staff.
Let's try, okay?
Looking at the audited financials, total income for MCPB in the FY ending June 30, 2013 was $652,670.
My contention has always been that MCPB has been a jobs program for the people who work there. We could probably get along with half the staff. When you really think about it, all we really need at the station are technical people to keep the signal humming. Everything else is secondary. I could do compliance with the FCC, CPB, and IRS in my sleep. It's all pro forma. As things are presently structured, staff really spends much of their time not working, per se, but raising money for their own salaries and benefits — singing for their supper, as it were. They're presently doing it now during this Winter Pledge Drive.
So all this raises the question: What part of of total income of $652,670 is expensed to salaries and benefits?
Ah, that is the rub!
Salaries and benefits are not reported as such. They're folded into other budget line items. Very deceptive. Very clever. Salaries and benefits are expensed as parts of “program services” and “supporting services.”
Take a look (again, from the audit):
* * *
Programming and production $74,314 $ — $74,314
Broadcasting $106,393 — 106,393
Program information and promotion$ 58,614 — 58,614
Management and general $163,594 — 163,594
Fundraising and membership development $100,080 — 100,080
Underwriting and grant solicitation $ 44,140 — 44,140
TOTAL EXPENSES $547,135 $ — $547,135
* * *
If you were to think that you could go to MCPB tax filings for what we spend on salaries and benefits, think again. Salaries and benefits are not separated out. Everything is lumped together, as it was in our audit. The following line items are from MCPB's Form 999 for 2012, the last year on file in the public domain.
* * *
Part IX, line 5, “Total Expenses for Key Employees” — $54,000
Part IX, line 7, “Other Salaries and Wages” — $242,390
Part IX, line 13, “Office Expenses, Including Program Service Expense, Management annd General Expense” — $158, 284
* * *
Well, confusing financials may be the whole point!
PS. One other thing about MCPB's financials. I just received this from former Board Director and programmer Doug McKenty, and I quote verbatim:
“The website only contains info going back to 2008. I don't know how to get any earlier data. From what I can gather, when Coate became GM the station was broke, but without much debt.
“Rather than go public with this info, as KMUD did when they had a financial hiccup a few years ago, he waited until the station was $175k in debt and he let Aanestad [Christina Aanestad, popular investigative journalist] go. Only at this time did the membership discover the extent of the financial problem. —Doug”
* * *
If what Doug says is true, it's shocking.
HARE BRAINED SHOPPING CENTER
Re: Proposed Hare Creek Shopping Center.
What do residents and business owners of Fort Bragg need with yet another “shopping center"? Does the City and Group II developer plan to go forward without public input? Locally owned businesses strive to bring quality items, not cheap, slave labor junk . The small town uniqueness of Fort Bragg is being overtaken by craven business developers whose only stake is the bottom line. Group II states it has two retailers interested in this shopping center...who are they and what will they offer our town? If this project goes forward, Fort Bragg will lose it's soul buried by crass consumerism.
THE HEADWATERS FUND…
…a story of desertion & betrayal
People who think the common man is thick and a soft touch to boot might want to have a word with Bert Silva of Rio Dell. Silva worked for the Pacific Lumber Company for 31 years and spoke on behalf of the company on numerous occasions at various forums, meetings, and environmental protests surrounding the 1990 “Redwood Summer.”
The bankruptcy of PALCO and the sale of Headwaters cost Silva and many other timber workers their jobs. As part of the settlement and purchase agreement the state and federal governments awarded Humboldt County $18 million as compensation. In March of 2007 then-Rep. Virginia Strom-Martin and then-Gov. Gray Davis posed for a photo on the steps of the Humboldt County Courthouse, holding a giant check for $12 million. On the memo line it read: “For jobs and job retraining for displaced workers.”
That check offered ex-PALCO workers and their families a glimmer of hope, at least for a short time. Then it became a nightmare.
At the recommendation of Supervisors Bonnie Neely and John Woolley, the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors adopted a Headwaters Fund Charter to outline its purpose and structure and to justify the emptiness of their impending actions. The money would be used to “support the growth of industry clusters; to increase the number of sustainable jobs that pay at or above the median income; and to enhance the quality of life for residents of Humboldt County through projects that promote healthy communities and protect and enhance the natural environment.”
In other words it was going into a private slush fund. This seemed to be a good all-purpose way for local representatives and moneyed nobility to tell PALCO workers and gyppo loggers, “We're taking your money. Deal with it or don't.”
Headwaters funds have since been spent on an upgrade at Buckhorn Summit on State Route 299, an expansion of air service from the Arcata-Eureka Airport to Los Angeles, and loans to various local businesses. $750,000 went to a Forestry Products Initiative aimed at convincing California residents to choose redwood over wood-plastic composite lumber when building decks. What about job retraining for displaced PALCO employees? Why, that money was being used to “offset job losses.”
Pretty slick, huh? Simply twist the facts. Break out the smoke and mirrors. Wall Street bigwigs and Washington spin-doctors have nothing on our Board of Supervisors.
“The Headwaters Fund was to retrain displaced timber workers and to offset the decrease in timber tax revenue,” said Silva. “Those who lost their jobs at PALCO never saw a dime of that money. The county pocketed the whole thing. When I called the courthouse and asked about it, I was told that the money was never earmarked for those purposes. I had a long talk with former Rep. Virginia Strom-Martin, who had authored the bill, and she too wondered why the workers never saw any of the money.”
Humboldt County Economic Development Coordinator Jacqueline Debets also told Silva that Headwaters money had never been reserved for jobs and job retraining. Evidently, there were more important places for it, like the Orick rodeo grounds restroom facility ($50,000), Internet access for the Hoopa Valley Tribe ($35,000), and septic improvement for Willow Creek ($35,000).
There is something a little sad, if not enormously disturbing about this picture. It's a story of responsibility shirked. And let's not stop there. Let's extrapolate a little further because if you look at this closely, it's a downright disgrace. The Headwaters Fund is not being used as intended. The money was set aside for displaced PALCO workers. Calling it a “grant fund” or a “community investment fund” is just so much manipulation and greasy double-speak on the part of the Board of Supervisors.
“County leadership knew there would be layoffs,” said Silva. “I lost my job and there was only $4,000 to retrain from the state. No money came from the Headwaters Fund.”
Silva knows that taking roundhouse swipes at local politicians is not the answer to the problem. But he would like to see the Headwaters Fund used for its intended purpose: To help laid off PALCO employees get back on their feet. “We aren't looking for a lump-sum payout or early retirement,” he explained. “We just want what was promised to us.
“In the end it was not only Hurwitz and the enviros who got what they wanted from the demise of PALCO,” Silva added. “It was our county government as well.”
SAVE THE UDJ REDWOODS
To the Editor:
The thought of losing the historic UDJ redwoods really disturbs me. The City is claiming they are a dangerous liability. After all, a branch may fall on a passing car or pedestrian. But those trees are tall, proud, and beautiful.
What about the huge short-lived valley oaks on North State Street; one in front of the Lambs Inn, the other in front of the Goodwill? They are far more likely to drop their branches, and those limbs are much larger and heavier.
Then I walked up and down School Street looking at the leafless contorted Chinese Pistaches. They have heaved up the surrounding sidewalks. The concrete patching is poorly done, is ugly and are lumps to trip over. Also, the trees shed lots of leaves in the fall, making the sidewalks slippery. That is a greater liability as well as lots of expense in repairing sidewalks, cleaning them, and clearing out storm drains. Not only that, but when leafed out the trees obscure the facades of the buildings they shade. Is the City of Ukiah ashamed of itself?
Robert M. Axt
VOTE FOR PAUL
Letter to the Editor
I, Paul Lambert, former KZYX newsman and host of Mendo Matters, am running for the KZYX Board of Directors as an At Large Candidate. I am making this statement to urge the members to participate in this election.
On the web, a group who are deeply frustrated with KZYX's current direction have stated that , if elected, the General Manager and the Program director will be fired. They already have plans for who they will hire to do the news and have discussed reducing or eliminating NPR programming.
Their attacks on Coate and Aigner caused the Board of Directors to take the unprecedented step of writing a public letter on the KZYX website supporting the staff signed by eight of the nine board members.
I do not believe that these folks represent the majority of the membership.
By no means is KZYX perfect or anywhere near it; it needs better programming, more diverse programming, including younger people, Latinos, African Americans, Gays and children. It needs a studio in Ukiah so other voices can be heard. Some programs that used to be on should be reviewed for inclusion again . There are legitimate issues that should be addressed, like making it easier to communicate with the Board.
That's why your vote is so important in this election. Be sure to vote.
Please vote for me, Paul Lambert (At Large) and the Third District Jane Futcher (who has had no part in this letter).
You, the membership, will decide and I will abide by your decision.
TED’S TOP TEN
I held off on this until finishing number ten on the list. Here they are in the order in which I read them:
A Wrinkle in Time, Madeleine L'Engle
Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, Carson McCullers
Journey to the End of the Night, Louis-Ferdinand Celine
The Presence of the Past, Rupert Sheldrake
The Pentagon of Power, Lewis Mumford
Introduction to Metaphysics, Henri Bergson
Blood Rites, Barbara Ehrenreich
Wholeness and the Implicate Order, David Bohm
Women, Charles Bukowski
My own book is due out in May on the Iff Books label. Maybe someday it'll make someone's top ten list.
The Ukraine situation is a fast moving story, but it is has become clear Crimea and perhaps other Russian speaking areas will also spin off from being part of Ukraine. Obama and the Europeans can huff and puff, but there is nothing they can do about it. Ukraine, a fiscal basket case, will move towards being part of the EU.
Splits and potential splits are also going on in other countries: Catalonia is voting this year for independence from Spain. Also this year Scotland will be voting for independence from the United Kingdom plus the Syrian Kurds are moving toward an independent state.
MEMO OF THE WEEK
Kzyx Does A Candidate's Night
(with all calls screened of course)
As I assume y'all know, the candidates forum is Thursday night. I wanted to ask if you have any questions you'd like asked of them, and if you do to please send them to me directly. You might think of any questions you'd have for people you will be working with on the Board over the coming years. Eliane has sent me some and I'll be supplying a few as well. I will not be identifying the source of the questions on that night, but just giving Michael Kisslinger a list to get it started. We'll also take questions from listeners, but they will call in to the office, we'll write them down, and pass them on to Michael. No live listener call-ins, and therefore no meandering, pontificating, or ranting by listeners.
Stuart Campbell, KZYX Candidates Coordinator
At their January 21, 2014 meeting, the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, on a 3/2 vote, took a big step forward in making it possible for local homeowners and business owners to access special property assessed financing to pay for home improvements that address energy efficiency and water conservation, through the Property Assessed Clean Energy (or PACE) program.
Before moving forward, the Board spent more than a year considering PACE, established an ad-hoc Board committee to research the issue, received letters of support from, among others, the City of Fort Bragg, and received public comment.
Mendocino County’s PACE program is now expected to be in place by late spring or early summer 2014. Thus, PACE financing for Mendocino County homeowners will come in the midst of an epic drought, and at a time of growing concern nationwide about the environmental and economic impacts of dependence on fossil fuels.
How Does PACE Work?
PACE in Mendocino County is being modeled after similar programs established in cities and counties nationwide.
Nearby, in Sonoma County, more than 2,000 PACE-funded projects have been completed, most of them for residential housing.
Mendocino County’s PACE program will be available for both homeowners and business owners, and will be developed and run by the same third party administrator that runs the Sonoma County PACE program: Ygrene Energy Fund, whose nationwide headquarters are based in Santa Rosa, California.
According to the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program: PACE provides “an opportunity for property owners to finance energy efficiency, water conservation and renewable energy generation improvements through a voluntary assessment. These assessments will be attached to the property, not the owner, and will be paid back through the property tax system over time, making the program not only energy efficient but also affordable.”
Let’s consider this hypothetical example: the Reyes family owns a two story home in rural Mendocino County. They are concerned about their high energy bills and the difficulty they have in keeping their home warm during the winter. In the midst of the drought, they worry that their well is running low, and wonder if they have leaking pipes. They wonder how to make their home more energy and water efficient. They wonder if their home would be a good place for solar power.
Mendocino County’s PACE program, as proposed to the Board of Supervisors by Ygrene, and as being developed now, would provide the Reyes family with good information and referrals to contractors who understand the PACE program, who will come out to the Reyes’ home to evaluate their energy use and provide proposals for ways they can improve water conservation and energy efficiency.
Once the Reyes family decides which improvements they want to implement, they can voluntarily opt-in to participate in the PACE program, applying through the local PACE office to levy a self-assessment to pay for the improvements. The local PACE office provides guidance, helping the Reyes family to understand their options, and to complete an application for the PACE program.
By participating in the PACE program, the Reyes family is able to improve their home's water conservation and energy efficiency. These improvements result in a decrease in their energy bills, and save their well from running dry during the summer, which saves them the cost and headache of having to drill a deeper well.
With lower home energy bills, and a more sustainable water supply, the Reyes home is now a more affordable, and comfortable, place to live.
Unlike a loan, PACE is a property tax self-assessment, attached to the property, which the Reyes family agrees to pay back over time, through a voluntary increase in their property tax bill.
If the Reyes family decides to sell their home, they will need to tell the purchaser about the assessment, which stays attached to the home’s property tax assessment, and thus is taken over by the new homeowner.
Under the PACE model, cities and counties are allowed to create special districts where property owners in the district may voluntarily agree to add an assessment to their property tax. These clean-energy districts are authorized as an extension of the Mello-Roos Community Finance Facilities Act of 1982.
In the words of californiataxdata.com: “In 1978 Californians enacted Proposition 13, which limited the ability of local public agencies to increase property taxes based on a property’s assessed value. In 1982, the Mello-Roos Community Facilities Act of 1982 (Government Code §53311-53368.3) was created to provide an alternate method of financing needed improvements and services. The Act allows any county, city, special district, school district or joint powers authority to establish a Mello-Roos Community Facilities District (a “CFD”) which allows for financing of public improvements and services.”
According to Ygrene: “In 2008, the California State Legislature adopted…AB 811, [which] authorizes cities and counties to enter into voluntary contractual assessments with property owners for eligible energy efficiency, renewable generation and water conservation improvements that are permanently attached to private property. The legislature determined that installation of these improvements enhances the environment, creates jobs and stimulates the economy, and thereby provides a public benefit.”
So What's Next?
Mendocino County Board of Supervisors has now established the Clean Energy District (2013-1), and is in the process of “Validation,” meaning it is on track and moving forward in the steps needed to implement the PACE program by late spring or early summer.
The Clean Energy District (2013-1) now includes all unincorporated areas of Mendocino County. As part of the Validation process, the incorporated cities in Mendocino County are being given the chance to “opt-in” to be included in the District, making their residents eligible to participate in the County’s PACE program.
The County will also work out details of their partnership with Ygrene, including how the assessments will be funded. Once Mendocino County completes the Validation process, Ygrene will have the green light to move forward in establishing the local office and staffing needed to make PACE happen.
Summer 2014 locals can expect to hear specific details from Ygrene about the location of the Mendocino County PACE office and the availability of PACE assessments. Local staff will be responsible for marketing and outreach. Contractors will be encouraged to participate in Contractor Trainings to learn how best to work with the PACE program.
Thank You Board of Supervisors!
Mendocino Solar Service thanks the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors for their thoughtful consideration of PACE. We thank County staff for their work on PACE, as well as Supervisor Dan Hamburg and Supervisor John McCowen who served on the Board's Ad-Hoc Committee researching PACE, and Supervisor Dan Gjerde who supported the PACE project.
We also extend our thanks to Keith Rutledge of REDI, for his unwavering support of PACE.
And, our thanks as well to all the residents, homeowners and business owners who spoke out and sent comments to the Board in support of PACE.
Here's to more, and more, and more good news to share!
Bruce Erickson, Maggie Watson & the Mendocino Solar Service team
My great books list:
Peter Kropotkin, Mutual Aid. Bible old, Bible new. Growing Up Absurd, Paul Goodman. Poems, John Wester. Ulster Man, JP 'Diego' Donohoe. Captain Fathom's Fables, Alan Graham. My Secret Life as a Zionist, Benito Mussolini. Works of Ongoing Progress, Life as an Anarcho-Hipneck Muckraker. B. Anderson. Life As a Great Artist, housebuilder pioneer and own true friend to the Afflicted, my number one ex: Tami Diane.
Alan ‘Captain Fathom’ Graham
PS. I have been thinking about the events and organizations surrounding the JFK murder. (Will it ever stop?) According to revealed government sources Oswald was a person of interest but apparently not interesting enough. The bit of the puzzle that is hardest to swallow is Jack Ruby. A known mafia connected crazy man! How was he able to walk up to the most heavily guarded prisoner in Texas in the police station and blow him away? Oswald said he was a patsy for who or whom we will never know.
PLEASE DON'T DO IT HERE
The other night at about 9pm after a busy evening of diners, a fight broke out at the Buckhorn. I guess what bothers me most about this is who was involved and the "redneck" mentality that seems to take over. Yes, the Buckhorn now has a liquor license. So what?! It doesn't mean it's like "The Lodge" now. It's not!
The Buckhorn is actually a beautiful restaurant. We have beautiful furnishings. Many of which have been handcrafted by good friends and locals. Our bar and tables were all made from one huge Pepperwood tree. A lot of time, money and hard work went into creating the beauty that you see when you walk through our front doors. We are taught as employees that this is our house and we take a lot of pride in that! We are taught hospitality. And as a team that's what we strive for. Making our guests feel welcome and giving them a wonderful experience. We have a great menu. There's something on it for everyone. And our kitchen staff takes a lot of pride in the food they put out. I personally am very proud to serve our food.
I used to tend bar at The Lodge, even years ago when it was a lot rougher in there than it was towards the end. (In fact, I have a reputation for being a "hard ass" because of how I had to be when I worked there.) It was a tough crowd sometimes. But The Lodge is gone. Those days are over now. Oh sure, we all have funny stories and tall tales from those days, but they're over now. No bar business is ever going to succeed in that location again. Between the greedy landlord, and the redneck mentality that keeps out patrons you need to stay afloat, it's not possible. So, it's over! Let's move on!
So now we have liquor at the Buckhorn. You can come in for great food, drinks and to share some good times with friends. And seriously, Bloody Marys with our brunch! It doesn't get any better than that!
I guess what it comes down to is respect and appreciation. We strive to treat all of our guests with this attitude. And it really saddens me to see such a lack of both in the actions of the two locals who started the fight. Both have been "regulars" at the Buckhorn for a while now. One had previously mentioned what a nice place it was, not the "dive" The Lodge was. I thought that they actually got it. That they actually enjoyed coming in. I consider both of these men to be friends of mine. People I go out of my way to do a favor for.
However, that night I would have been ashamed to admit that. They had absolutely no respect for anyone or anything (including themselves). And I'm not sure if they realize it or not, but the stranger they decided to pick a fight with (I'm talking within five minutes of the man sitting down) is a rugby player from Australia. If Tom and John hadn't been able to separate them, it probably wasn't going to go well for the two locals.
Anyway, they won't be coming in the Buckhorn anymore. We can't allow a few to ruin it for everyone else. We can't allow you to take away from what we're working so hard to accomplish in our house. The Lodge is dead! Long live the BUCKHORN!
HOW ABOUT IT, COATE?
Questions for KZYX:
What happened to the survey from members of several years ago?
Why not combine the "news" with Lake County since most news comes from there?
How many programmers are paid?
Why so much NPR programming? One hour in the morning is enough, the second hour is just repeat.
Why not have Thom Hartman (5am), The Takeaway (6am) on later in the morning?
How about having only Mendocino County programmers? (Get rid of the two who live out of state.)
How about moving Humankind (4am, Saturday), Commonwealth of California (5am, Saturday) and Living on Earth (6am, Saturday) later in the day when people are not sleeping in? These are all excellent programs.
How do we get our "talk" programmers to stop having interviewees pushing their books and let the listeners ask the questions, not the programmers?
Until most of these things change, I'm not renewing my membership! This station needs to be more transparent, responsible and dedicated to their listeners.