- Butts Fire
- County Sleazeballs
- PA Field Station
- Knopp Gone
- Attention, Diverters
- Hitler Rents
- Fire Fighting
- Catch of the Day
- Waldorf Magic
- Never the Same
- Broadband Money
- Farm School
- Geology Hike
- Albion Corridor
- Protesting Corruption
- Hare Fourth
THE BUTTS CANYON FIRE on the Lake-Napa border, has roared through 4300 acres, destroying two homes. Last report we have it remains at 30 percent containment.
ALTHOUGH declared less than forty percent contained, firefighters say they have gained the upper hand as of late Thursday and have allowed many residents to return to their homes and some roads in the area, closed since Tuesday, to be reopened.
SCOTT McLEAN, a battalion chief for the state Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said Thursday afternoon, "We're making great progress. We don't expect any more expansion of the fire at this point."
FIREFIGHTERS all over the state, including Mendocino County, remain on heightened alert in unprecedentedly dry conditions.
ECHOES of Kendall Smith, the former 4th District Supervisor threatened with prosecution by DA Eyster before she paid back the money she'd chiseled from travel reimbursements. It took three grand juries to finally get action on Smith. (Supervisor Colfax was also stealing but he was smart enough to keep no record whatsoever of his travel; it was obvious he was doing it, but not obvious enough from his non-records to move on him.) These cases, though, illustrate the relentlessly sleazy context, and the plethora of sleazeballs to populate the context, that is the public's business in Mendocino County.
THE SMITH-COLFAX ECHO here is Tom Pinizzotto. In his case, as confirmed by the GJ, you have a County employee — Pinizzotto — engineering what amounts to a large give-away of public funds to a private mental health outfit not long after being transferred from that same outfit to County consulting and then on to County Officialdom during the privatization process. All of it's nicely documented by this year’s grand jury. We think the DA ought to take a long, hard look at this one.
OF COURSE if it's legal that Mendocino County can sell essential services to private parties without even putting the service out to a genuinely open bidding process…
"It" is the under-used and under-maintained ecological field station next door to the recent fed acquisition of the Stornetta Lands near Point Arena. The property used to be a military navigation station. Mendo College has owned it for about 30 years. The feds will pay $1.5 million for roughly 220 acres of ocean front land and open it up to the public. (The property's size is described in meters, but we don't think that's square meters, so there's no precise way to convert non-square meters to acres.) Mendo College administrators want to sell, a couple of faculty want to keep it for occasional student study jaunts. Admin says it needs the money to offset declining enrollment, which is another question altogether in that we think enrollment should be increasing, not declining. Enrollment is probably declining because even the formerly free community colleges are now very expensive for students of ordinary means. Students of no means are increasingly left out all together.
“I think it's essential for our field classes and our science classes,” said Mendocino College marine biology instructor Alan West.
Educators across Northern California have been lobbying the college to either drop the proposed sale or sell the site to another college that would maintain it for research.
“Excellent field stations in pristine habitat, such as Mendocino College's facility, which provide a unique opportunity to stay close to study areas, are few and far between. It would be a great loss to current and future generations of students of all ages if the field station were to close,” Jeanne Marie Acceturo, program coordinator for the UC Berkeley Jepson Herbaria, wrote in a June 27 email to Mendocino College officials.
THE COUNTY EXECUTIVE OFFICE has announced the departure of Assistant CEO Kyle Knopp who has taken a job as City Manager of Rio Dell in Humboldt County. Knopp came to Mendocino County from Humboldt where he was employed in the county administrator's office. Knopp spent about four years in Mendocino County where he was primarily responsible for the county budget process and more recently for labor negotiations where he earned the enmity of the incompetents running SEIU, the county's largest bargaining group. Knopp was thought to be in line to eventually succeed CEO Carmel Angelo. Career-wise, the city manager post in Rio Dell seems like more of a side step than an advancement. But there are no indications that the Board or CEO were unhappy with Knopp, who is credited with helping restore fiscal stability to the County after it teetered on the brink of bankruptcy several years ago.
Dear Department Heads:
Please join me in congratulating Kyle Knopp upon his appointment as City Manager of the City of Rio Dell (Humboldt County). Today is Kyle's last day with the County of Mendocino. Kyle's contributions and accomplishments during his tenure in Mendocino County have been noteworthy. With his assistance, our County team has instituted sustainable budgeting practices, reduced the County's long-term debt, increased our reserve balances, experienced improved fiscal health, upgraded our County credit rating, and have received national recognition for the County Budget Book. The Executive Office invites you and your staff to join us in wishing Kyle all the best in his future endeavors - he will be missed. An announcement will be forthcoming with regard to Executive Office liaison assignments and related matters. Questions regarding this announcement may be directed to Kristi Furman, DCEO, at 463-4441. Thank you. Carmel J. Angelo, Chief Executive Officer
A MESSAGE from the State Water Resources Control Board.
On June 30th, the State Water Board mailed 129 curtailment notices to junior water rightholders within the Eel River watershed which includes the North Fork Eel, Mainstem Eel and Van Duzen River areas. The 129 curtailment notices affect a total of 199 post-1914 water rights. A copy of the letter is available at:
Water right users subject to curtailment are required to complete a curtailment certification form, for each water right, within seven days of receipt of the notice by online, fax, email or mail. A copy of the curtailment certification form is available at:
If a diverter claims that the curtailed water right is the sole source of water for human health and safety needs, in addition to completing the curtailment certification form, the diverter must complete a Human Health and Safety Claim form available at:
For more information, please check our website at,
* * *
RE THE RECENT STATE CRACKDOWN on water diversion permits in the Russian River Watershed (Similar to the Eel river curtailment process above, but without the grapes.)—
1. We assume that insiders saw this coming and lots of grape growers went into hurry-up mode to fill up their ponds from the battered Russian before the inevitable cutbacks — which accelerated the need for the curtailment orders.
2. Sacramento-based water lobbyist/consulting outfit Wagner and Bonsigniore “currently is working with between 75 and 100 farmers on water projects on the Russian River.” Oh yeah, “working with” … “farmers.” At hundreds of thousands of dollars per, helping to make the system so unmanageably complex. How many “farmers” do you know who can afford to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to a water consultant in Sacramento?
3. Apparently many Russian River diverters have so far “ignored” state orders to stop? We haven’t seen the actual letters from the Water Board, but we assume they're written in the usual opaque government-ese, meaning even the well-meaning and law-abiding growers are confused as to exactly what they’re supposed to curtail.
HITLER TRIES TO RENT AN APARTMENT IN THE CITY
ON-LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY:
We used to have lookout towers, smoke jumpers and rural CDF fire stations and camps all over our map. Instead, now we have complex command and control, resources to gather from further away, delayed responses, and inadequate commitment of fire fighters and aircraft until the fire is out of control. All in the name of what?
CATCH OF THE DAY, JULY 3, 2014
MARKEESE BRANTLEY, Ukiah. Domestic assault, revocation of probation.
JENNIFER BROSSEAU, Gualala. Domestic assault.
JASON COLLINS, Eureka. Failure to appear.
MIGUEL GUERRERO-GALLEGOS, Upper Lake. Driving without a license.
JERROD HOPPER, Ukiah. Drunk in public.
TRAVIS HUMPHREY, Talmage. "The Hump." Frequent flier. This time for possession of meth, resisting arrest. The Hump never goes down easy.
JOSHUA KEYS, Meth ingestion
TIMOTHY KJERSEM, Willits. Drunk in public.
HARRY McGLOTHLIN, Willits. Drunk in public. Frequent flier originally from Utah.
TYLER NOEL, Willits. Domestic violence.
JAMES OCHOA, No fixed address. Drunk in public, revocation of probation.
HARRY WEST, Ukiah. Frequent flier. Arrested in Willits as drunk in public. Like almost all the frequents, Harry sobers up in custody, then he's released and immediately gets max-loaded again. Interesting that this time he somehow got to Willits before he made a nuisance of himself stumbling around, a danger to himself and others.
MORNING ROSES: An Introduction to Waldorf Preschool and Kindergarten. Saturday, August 16th from 10 to 11:30 am at the Waldorf School of Mendocino County. Bring your young child (age 2-4) and together experience the magic of a Waldorf education. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 707-485-8719 x 6.
THEIR LIVES TOOK A TURN
The ambulance men touched her cold
body, lifted it, heavy as iron,
onto the stretcher, tried to close the
mouth, closed the eyes, tied the
arms to the sides, moved a caught
strand of hair, as if it mattered,
saw the shape of her breasts, flattened by
gravity, under the sheet,
carried her, as if it were she,
down the steps.
These men were never the same. They went out
afterward, as they always did,
for a drink or two, but they could not meet
each other's eyes.
Their lives took
a turn — one had nightmares, strange
pains, impotence, depression. One did not
like his work, his wife looked
different, his kids. Even death
seemed different to him — a place where she
would be waiting,
and one found himself standing at night
in the doorway to a room of sleep, listening to a
woman breathing, just an ordinary
— Sharon Olds
NBNCBC GETS $250k
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has awarded the North Bay/North Coast Broadband Consortium (NBNCBC) a two-year grant for $250,000 to help plan for telecommunications broadband deployment and services to unserved and underserved areas in Marin, Mendocino, Napa and Sonoma counties. This grant is augmented by a significant amount of in-kind and volunteer resources in each county.
Six months ago the four county Boards of Supervisors endorsed the formation of NBNCBC and submitted a grant application to the CPUC’s California Advanced Service’s Fund Rural and Urban Regional Broadband Consortia Grant Account. At its June 12, 2014 meeting the Commission approved NBNCBC as the 16th regional consortium.
The mission of NBNCBC is to ensure the needs for broadband access and adoption are met in every corner of all four counties. NBNCBC’s top priority and immediate focus is on bringing broadband services to the unserved and underserved areas in our four counties. The leadership of NBNCBC involves an Oversight Committee and a Management Team.
Mendocino County Supervisor Dan Hamburg and county supervisors Steve Kinsey (Marin), Brad Wagenknecht (Napa) and Efren Carrillo (Sonoma) comprise the Oversight Committee. Jim Moorehead, Chair of the Broadband Alliance Mendocino County (BAMC), and Brandon Merritt in the County’s Executive Office are part of the multi-county NBNCBC Management Team.
NBNCBC has identified 30 priority areas across the three counties of Marin, Mendocino and Sonoma that they have rated as unserved or underserved. NBNCBC is still working on identifying these areas in Napa County. These areas are defined by the CPUC as not having any services or services that do not meet the minimum broadband speeds of 6 Mbps download and 1.5 Mbps upload to every household.
Of the 30 priority areas, 17 are in Mendocino County. Fifteen (15) of these 17 are communities that have been included in the Route 1 Corridor Plan that BAMC developed two years ago. These Route 1 Corridor clusters involve: Laytonville, Branscomb, Angelo Reserve/Wilderness Rd./Jack-of-Hearts Creek Rd., Ocean Meadows Circle, Boice Lane (Fort Bragg), Caspar and Prairie Way (outer Rd. 409), Mendocino (outer Rd. 408), Albion, Navarro Ridge Road, Pacific Reefs, Elk, Irish Beach, Manchester, Point Arena, and Gualala. The other two priority areas are Rancho Navarro and Sherwood Road/Willowbrook. In the CPUC Draft Resolution recommending approval, staff commented that “Mendocino County has the largest population of unserved residents in California.”
While these areas are the immediate foci of NBNCBC the strategy is to make sure the broadband needs all areas in the four counties are met.
BAMC is a partnership of the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, the Community Foundation of Mendocino County and the Economic Development and Financing Corporation of Mendocino County.
Contact: Jim Moorehead, Chairman@MendocinoBroadband.org
Trish Steel, AdminCoordinator@MendocinoBroadband.org
John Kuhry, EDFC Executive Director, John@EDFC.org
TRAINING THE NEXT GENERATION OF FARMERS AT THE GRANGE FARM SCHOOL
by Elizabeth Archer
With nearly a third of U.S. farmers over the age of 65, it is estimated that 400 million acres of land will change hands in the next 10 years. And, although there is a growing desire among younger populations to become farmers, there are very few resources available to learn and practice the trade. That’s where the Grange Farm School comes in. Located at Ridgewood Ranch off Highway 101 just south of Willits, this residential training program is geared toward aspiring farmers who have the drive and desire to work in agriculture, but need training and hands-on experience to achieve that goal.
Since its inception in 2013, a lot of work has been done by a small but dedicated staff. Grange Farm School Director Antonia Partridge, Farm Site Manager Ruthie King, Acting Executive Director Michael Foley, Board Chair Lanny Cotler, and a group of volunteers have poured their hearts – and sweat – into getting the school off the ground. “The project wouldn't be possible without all the people who've dreamed it, raised money for it, and spent their spare hours – and more – making it happen,” says Foley.
The school currently accepts practicum students who live, work, and learn on-site. The leadership team plans to launch the school’s core program in 2016. It will comprise a nine-month intensive training that will prepare the whole farmer, including curriculum on agricultural production skills, industrial arts, and marketing and business skills essential to a profitable farm. The school also offers workshops on topics ranging from orchard management to greywater plumbing, hoop house construction to raising chickens.
A 1920s ranch house is currently undergoing renovation for staff housing and classroom space. There are seven acres available for crop production and livestock grazing and rotation, plus a two-acre orchard with 100-year-old apple trees. With ample space, natural resources, and a network of experts, there is incredible potential to develop a world-class institute. The school’s leaders anticipate that it can be an independently-functioning institution within three years, but funds are needed in the short-term to build the school’s infrastructure and capacity.
Enter FundRazr, a crowdsourcing site that the Grange Farm School is using to raise capital. Although the goal is $95,000, any amount that is raised will be put to good use. The campaign ends on August 7, and the school’s leaders feel cautiously optimistic that the goal will be reached. “The most important thing is to get the campaign seen by as many people as possible,” says King. “It’s going to take many small drops in the bucket.”
The Grange Farm School began with support from the California State Grange and the Little Lake Grange in Willits, and is generously hosted by the Golden Rule community of Ridgewood Ranch. The school currently operates under the umbrella of North Coast Opportunities (NCO), the Community Action Agency for Mendocino and Lake Counties. It’s a natural fit with NCO’s mission to invest in people through community action, and NCO is deeply connected to the local food movement as well.
With so much institutional and community support, the Grange Farm School is a welcome addition to the North Coast, and has the potential to impact hundreds of new farmers and thousands of acres of farmland. To learn more or to get involved, contact Michael Foley at email@example.com or (707) 216-5549. To donate, visit fundrazr.com and search for “Grange Farm School.”
GEOLOGY OF THE LOST COAST HIKE
Join Sanctuary Forest on Saturday, July 12 for the Geology of the Lost Coast hike, held in the stunningly beautiful Sinkyone Wilderness State Park. Consulting Geologist Kathy Moley of Pacific Watershed Associates will describe geologic processes while viewing their resulting formations along the rugged and scenic coast. Additionally, topics of conversation will include the dynamic and frequently seismic environment of north coastal California and discussions of both the short term and long term effects of earthquakes and tsunamis here on the north coast. Please meet at the Sanctuary Forest office at 9:00 a.m. Hikers are encouraged to bring high-clearance, four-wheel drive vehicles to help with car-pooling down to the Sinkyone Wilderness. This moderate, 4.5-mile hike will end at 3 p.m. Bring a lunch and water and wear sturdy hiking shoes. This is a group excursion, and participants are asked to stay together at all times. The hike is free of charge, though donations are gladly accepted and help Sanctuary Forest offer this program year after year. For questions or clarifications, contact Marisa at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 986-1087 x 1#. Hope to see you there!
Support from volunteers and local businesses have made this program possible for Sanctuary Forest. Local businesses that have made generous contributions are Blue Star Gas, Caffe Dolce, Charlotte’s Perennial Gardens, Chautauqua Natural Foods, Dazey’s Supply, First Fig Gallery, Hohstadt’s Garden Center, Humboldt Bar & Grill, James Holland, MSW Counseling Services, J. Angus Publishing Group, Madrone Realty, Mattole Meadows, Mattole River Studios, Monica Coyne Artist Blacksmith, Ned Harwood Construction, Pierson Building Center, Redwood Properties, Roy Baker, O.D., Southern Humboldt Fitness, Sylvandale Gardens, The Security Store, Vella Wood Flooring, Whitethorn Construction, Whitethorn Winery, Wildberries Marketplace and Wyckoff’s Plumbing.
Sanctuary Forest is a land trust whose mission is to conserve the Mattole River watershed and surrounding areas for wildlife habitat and aesthetic, spiritual and intrinsic values, in cooperation with our diverse community.
Education Coordinator & Office Manager
(707) 986-1087, Extension 1#
ALBERT CATTALINI CONSERVANCY
Submitted by Friends of Enchanted Meadow
A non profit land trust, Friends of Enchanted Meadow has purchased the Albert Cattalini Conservancy, a lush, remote, Redwood creek corridor, linking two wildlife and nature sanctuaries on the Albion River of Mendocino County's north coast. The purchase of this area was specified in a 1997 court settlement between FOEM's director, Zia Cattalini and the Louisiana Pacific Corporation. Spring 1992, LP sued nearly a hundred citizens and Cattalini for protesting their logging. The SLAPPsuit as called by defendants; Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation was fueled by LP's deep pockets and zealot attorneys; now Mendocino County judges, appointed by Governor Swartzenegger. IN 1998 LP sold their timber holdings to The Mendocino Redwood Company, LLC, and MRC became heir to LP's unresolved legal disputes. LP's settlement promises were incompatible with local zoning laws, requiring a County rezone amendment application tolling eleven years to gain approval. Three parcels outlined for sanctuaries in the '97 settlement negotiations were rezoned and deemed OPEN SPACE in 2008, and simultaneously two; Ravens' Call and Enchanted Meadow Wetlands Sanctuary were transferred gratis from MRC to local land trusts. The remaining parcel, Albert Cattalini Conservancy, required payment, and purchase costs were met in December, 2013. Nick-named GREENLINK, it connects the other two sanctuaries; creating an enlarged, contiguous habitat for endangered wildlife and species of Special Concern. Albert Cattalini, a San Franciscan bay area native, graduated from Saint Mary's College in Moraga in 1936 and raised his large family in Vallejo. He retired from Bank of America in San Francisco, mid seventies and moved with his wife Marie, and youngest son, Robert to the Mendocino Coast. Al was a sports columnist for the Mendocino Beacon and volunteered as a docent regularly for the local State parks. He was a member of the San Francisco Mycological society and enjoyed preparing wild mushrooms for tasting at their public events. The Friends of Enchanted Meadow thanks all who have contributed through volunteerism and financial contributions to actuate the purchase and the MRC for the following through with LP's promises. For more info please go to- www.friendsofenchantedmeadow.org Nita T. Ishcomer, Zia Cattalini 937-2031
CALIFORNIA ACTIVISTS PROTESTING MONEY IN POLITICS DECLARE VICTORY
by Dan Bacher
After 5 more people were arrested in the State Capitol Rotunda in Sacramento at a sit in last night, activists from the group 99Rise today announced the end of their twelve-day occupation and civil disobedience campaign to get the corporate money out politics.
The unprecedented campaign resulted in 47 arrests, 2 legislative victories, and a private meeting with Governor’s Jerry Brown staff to discuss the corrupting influence of big money in politics, according to a statement from the group.
"We're in a time when corporations have more rights and have a louder voice than the people, as proven by recent Supreme Court decisions and the inability to pass legislation limiting corporation campaign contributions," said Paulina Gonzalez of Oakland, who was one of the five arrested last night. "I am here to send the message that corporations aren't people and that money is not free speech. This is the People's House and we have to take back our democracy."
State Senators Darrell Steinberg, Ted Lieu, Carol Liu, Mark Leno, Hannah-Beth Jackson, Jerry Hill, Jim Beall and Assembly members Mike Gatto, Jimmy Gomez and Roger Dickinson announced their public support for 99rise and acknowledged the corruption that results from money in politics, according to the group.
The campaign takes place at a time when corruption is mushrooming in California politics. In March, Senators Leland Yee of San Francisco, Ron Calderon of Montebello and Rod Wright of Inglewood were suspended from the State Senate with pay. Senators Yee and Calderon were indicted in separate federal corruption cases, while Senator Wright will be sentenced on July 21 on criminal charges that he lied about where he lived when he ran for office in 2008. “We walked 480 miles from L.A. to Sacramento with two simple demands for our state leaders: that they publicly acknowledge the crisis of corruption and take immediate action to end it,” said Kai Newkirk, co-founder and organizer with 99Rise. “Twelve days and almost 50 arrests later, we feel confident that those demands have been met and that the people have been heard.”
All three of their legislative demands - AJ R1, SB 1272, and SB 52 - have been advanced since the marchers arrived in Sacramento on Sunday, June 22.
AJR 1 calls for Article 5 of the U.S. Constitution to be amended to remove the big money out of politics.
SB 1272 calls for a voter initiative in California that will allow the state's citizens to weigh in on the Citizens United court decision of 2010.
SB 52, also known as the Disclose Act, would make it mandatory that all political advertisements prominently display the top three donors on the ad.
AJR 1 passed through the Senate the day after the group arrived, while S B52 moved through the elections committee the next day.
SB 1272 passed through the Assembly this past Monday and then passed through the Senate on a concurrence vote this morning. It will now move on to the Governors desk.
As activists conducted a sit-in within the rotunda last night, Assembly member Jimmy Gomez urged the group to continue their struggle to remove the money and corruption from politics.
"The only way to get change is to have people on the inside and people on the outside fighting for a common goal," said Gomez. "We're trying to make positive change on finance reform in the Legislature. Keep our feet to the fire - that's how we will get ahead."
In addition to gaining the support of Legislators, the Rise99 campaign received support from Dolores Huerta, the co-founder of the United Farmworkers Union and currently the President of the Dolores Huerta Foundation, who marched with the protesters in Sacramento and spoke at a rally at the State Capitol on June 22.
"We got to get public financing of political campaigns so that we can elect good people to office," said Huerta. "We have to work the streets, but we also need to get out the vote. Only 25 percent of Californians voted in the last election - that means that 75 percent didn't. We have to get good people elected to office and get our neighbors out to vote."
She ended her speech, by shouting, as the crowd joined in, "Viva La March for Democracy! Viva 99Rise! Si Se Puede!"
David Braun of Californians Against Fracking also spoke at that rally. "Only in a world where corruption and corporate influence rules would the government allow a destructive and dangerous practice like fracking to occur," he said.
He emphasized that there is no more clear example of the power of corporate money in politics than the recent failure of a fracking moratorium bill in the California Senate.
"The Senators who voted against the legislation took 14 times more money from the oil and gas industry that those who voted for it. That, of course, is taking place in a state where the overwhelming majority, 68 percent, of the public wants fracking stopped," stated Braun.
Curt Ries, 99Rise spokesman, summed up the victories that the group and its allies achieved over the past 12 days.
"We came here with two simple demands: that our state leaders (1) publically acknowledge the crisis of corruption and (2) take immediate action to end it. We feel very successful in achieving both demands," said Ries.
"We moved all three bills forward and were able to capture the attention of state legislators to come over to the side of the people and acknowledge that big money is corrupting our democracy and that we have to take action. This campaign is just the beginning - we're building a mass movement of direct nonviolent resistance to get the big money out of politics,” he concluded.
Background: The Revolving Door of Corruption
The revolving door between corporate interests, water contractors and state government that is the result of corporate money's overwhelming influence in California politics was demonstrated last September when Governor Jerry Brown appointed Laura King Moon of Woodland, a lobbyist for the state’s water exporters, as chief deputy director of the California Department of Water Resources (DWR).
Moon was a project manager for the Bay Delta Conservation Plan since 2011 while “on loan” from the State Water Contractors, a non-profit association of 27 public agencies from Northern, Central and Southern California that purchase water under contract from the California State Water Project.
And Moon's appointment was just one of the many examples of the revolving door between corporations and state government that have infested politics in California during the Schwarzenegger and Brown administrations. These examples include:
• The resignation of State Senator Michael J. Rubio in February 2013 to go work in a "government affairs" position for Chevron. Rubio, who was leading the charge to weaken the landmark California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and make it more friendly to corporations, claimed he resigned in order to spend more time with his family.
• DWR's hiring of Susan Ramos "on loan" from the Westlands Water District, the "Darth Vader" of California water politics, to serve as "a liaison between all relevant parties" surrounding the Delta Habitat Conservation and Conveyance Program (DHCCP) and provide "technical and strategic assistance" to DWR. Documents obtained by this reporter under the California Public Records Act revealed that Ramos, Deputy General Manager of the Westlands Water District, was hired in an "inter-jurisdictional personal exchange agreement" between the Department of Water Resources and Westlands Water District from November 15, 2009 through December 31, 2010. The contract was extended to run through December 31, 2011 and again to continue through December 31, 2012.
• The failure of Katherine Hart Johns, Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board member, to report her husband’s separate property interest in his lobbying firm, California Resource Strategies, Inc., on her 2006, 2007, and 2008 annual Statements of Economic Interests. The California Fair Political Practices Commission fined Hart Johns only $600 for this overt conflict of interest, in a classic example of how violators of state ethics and environmental laws often get off with a mere "slap on the wrist."
• The hijacking of "marine protection" in California by Catherine Reheis-Boyd, President of the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA). Reheis-Boyd chaired the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative Blue Ribbon Task Force to create alleged "marine protected areas" in Southern California and served on the task forces for the Central Coast, North Central Coast and North Coast. The oil and gas industry is the largest and most powerful corporate lobby in Sacramento. A report released on April 1, 2014 by the ACCE Institute and Common Cause reveals that Big Oil has spent $143.3 million on political candidates and campaigns – nearly $10 million per year and more than any other corporate lobby – over the past fifteen years. But Big Oil exerts its influence not just by making campaign contributions and serving on government regulatory panels, but also by lobbying legislators at the State Capitol. The oil industry spent $123.6 million to lobby elected officials in California from 1999 through 2013. This was an increase of over 400 percent since the 1999-2000 legislative session, when the industry spent $4.8 million. In 2013-2014 alone, the top lobbyist employer, Western States Petroleum Association, spent $4.7 million.
Nor can we overlook one of the greatest scandals to hit environmental politics in recent years - the 10 month federal prison sentence that a federal judge in May imposed upon Ron LeValley of Mad River Biologists, the former co-chair of the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative Science Advisory Team for the North Coast, for his role in a conspiracy to embezzle over $852,000 in federal funds from the Yurok Tribe.
In February, LeValley pleaded guilty to a single federal charge of conspiracy to commit embezzlement and theft from an Indian Tribal Organization (18U.S.C §§ 371 and 1163) in the complex scheme in collaboration with former Yurok Forestry Director Roland Raymond. According to court documents, LeValley submitted more than 75 false invoices between 2007 and 2010 in payment for “work” on northern spotted owl surveys that was never performed. The link to the indictment is available at: http://noyonews.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/U.S._v._Ron_LeValley_As_Filed.pdf.
There is no doubt that now is the time to get the corporate money and corruption out of state and national politics!
WHY INDIA BUT NOT US?
Please join with me by chanting the mahamantram on the Fourth of July. I am still in New Orleans...waiting to get my $290 reimbursed from the Earth First! Caffrey for Congress campaign attempt. Also, I have received nothing from anyone in Washington D.C. in terms of my going there and initiating a beltway action, (i.e. circumambulating and chanting and much else, to counteract the bogus energy emanating from inside the beltway). MEANWHILE, A MEDIA GROUP IN INDIA NAMED "MAYAPUR VOICE" HAS ASKED MY PERMISSION TO PUBLISH MY CALLOUT FOR CIRCUMAMBULATING AND CHANTING IN AREAS OF NESCIENCE, TO COUNTERACT BOGUS ENERGY! So how is it that I am being ignored in postmodern America, and appreciated in Mayapur, India? Please know that I am packed and ready to leave New Orleans...let's do something creative soon here in the U$A...call me at (504) 302-9951. Let's go!! What are we waiting for? In recognition of real spiritual liberation, and true freedom and democracy on the fourth of July...please chant the mahamantram: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
Craig Louis Stehr
Telephone messages: (504) 302-9951
Permanent email address: CraigStehr@pamho.net
Snail mail: 333 Socrates Street, New Orleans, LA 70114