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Mendocino County Today: Thursday, Aug 18, 2016

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CLAYTON FIRE, now 50% contained.


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SUPERVISOR HAMBURG’S sudden concern at Tuesday’s meeting for the condition of County roads didn’t fool the Sheriff. Agenda item 6(e) sponsored by Gjerde and McCowen requested that they be authorized to draft an argument in favor of Measure AH on the November ballot (Measure AG is the Sheriff's mental health initiative, Measure AH is a companion measure which contains the enacting clause necessary to implement the taxation aspect of Measure AG).

GJERDE and McCowen distributed a draft argument which endorsed both AG and AH and expressed the hope that all five BOS members would sign. Hamburg balked, saying he was on board to put Measure AH on the ballot but made it clear he did not support AG. He criticized it for being a one page proposal that lacked any detail and brought up the fiscal analysis done by the Executive Office staff.

CAMILLE SCHRADER delivered a realistic and detailed summation of how the different elements favored by Allman (Psychiatric Hold, Crisis Residential, Crisis Outpatient. and Drug and Alcohol Treatment) could be funded. Allman followed with a passionate defense of the purpose of the Measure, but did not really try to address Hamburg's concerns. Hamburg then doubled down with his criticism, calling the Sheriff's initiative "a pig in a poke." The BOS voted 4-1 (with Hamburg opposed) to approve the argument and endorse both Measures AG and AH.

WATCHING TUESDAY’S MEETING, we see Allman's speech, Hamburg doubling down in his criticism and finally the Sheriff and Hamburg firing comments back and forth. Oddly, most of Hamburg's cult-like following, like most of the County’s voters, probably favor the Sheriff's initiative, so it is not clear what Hamburg gained by ripping into it.

HAMBURG could have briefly stated his concerns, that he was not ready to endorse it and let it go at that. But the bottom line may be that we have two people who really don't like each other. Sheriff Allman is a career law enforcement officer and Dan Hamburg is a marijuana grower who is prone to think the worst of the blue meanies. (We’re printing the entire exchange between Sheriff Allman and Hamburg below.)

HAMBURG opened the discussion of the Mental Health Facilities Initiative by saying he supports the enabling initiative to collect the tax, but not necessarily the initiative itself because he was worried that it might end up costing too much money from the General Fund.

McCOWEN said he had a recent "revelation" that the Initiative would be "the best move forward," and that he now supported it, adding that the Board would "do everything we can to make it work. I hope we can all put our names to this."

HAMBURG: "Four of you could sign it if that's what you want to do. It's shocking that just a few meetings ago we went through Executive office report which concludes that it 'hopes' that funding streams will come through to make it fiscially possible. I interpret that as a weak endorsement, hope as opposed to 'believes' or 'has confidence that.' I'm not used to making $40 million decisions based on someone's hope. We all hope it works out. I'm just not ready to endorse it. I don't think we've begun to answer the questions. There's a $5 million shortfall. [The County staff analysis was] a worse case scenario? Our job to look at worst case, not rose colored glasses. It might adversely affect the county budget. [The County analysis] took a lot of money to prepare, and it raised a lot of questions in my mind which are laid out in report. One page initiative that talks about $40 million of taxpayer money. We have not resolved a lot of the issues that are presented by this initiative. There are lots of things I wrote down. I just don't understand where this thing is going well enough to say I'm a proponent of it."

REDWOOD QUALITY MANAGEMENT'S CAMILLE SHRADER pointed out that there are several components to the services that would be provided and most of them can be handled with existing funds. She was primarily worried about the residential drug treatment segment where there are things in Obamacare and Medical that might affect the funding, but that that segment could be postponed until the picture becomes clearer. She also said that staffing the facility with all-county employees with all their benefits on a 24/7 basis would be too expensive.

SHERIFF ALLMAN: “Most of my comments will be directed towards Supervisor Hamburg because I appreciate his concern, his valid concerns. I think that the answers to some questions are necessary, however we all agree that our crystal balls are in the shop, they are not here and we can't predict. 17 years ago when we closed the Puff [Psychiatric Holding Facility, PHF], nobody in this room was responsible for closing the Puff. The decision was based on some of the things you brought up like staffing. When we closed the Puff as a county decisions were made about money, decisions were made because there had been several transfers to the jail where suicides occurred. It was a shortsighted mistake. I can't blame the people who made the decision because I was not aware of all the facts. I was a North Sector Lieutenant in the North County and I did my own thing. I wasn't involved. And no one asked me what I thought. Now we have the benefit of history. We have the benefit of looking back 17 years and saying that after 17 years was the decision made then correct or was it a hastily made decision? I find myself in the corner that it was a hastily made decision that was penny-wise and pound-foolish. Some people may say this County has historically made colossal mistakes. I don't agree with that. I think we made the decision based on the knowledge we had and the situation at the time. We now have the benefit of history in our corner. The question I ask myself everyday when I make decisions is, Is this going to improve public safety or will it diminish public safety? Will this improve the quality of life or will it diminish the quality of life in Mendocino County? Those questions we as elected officials have to ask ourselves. You spend a quarter billion dollars a year as a Board of Supervisors and I'm only responsible for $23 million. But I ask that question regularly: Is this going to make Mendocino County better if I did this thing or that thing for the jail, or Would I buy this patrol car or not? So while Supervisor Hamburg has asked a very vital question regarding public employee staffing, I want to remind the board that during the discussion of Proposition 172 the County has been reminded very clearly that the Board of Supervisors for Mendocino County is the legislative body of Mendocino County and I'm part of the executive branch. You are part of the legislative branch. You decide if it's going to be staffed by public employees or if it's going to be contracted out. We also have the history of that. Ortner is now a four letter word in his room. Ortner is a corporation that we learned a lesson from. Other counties don't have the benefit of that. We have learned lessons. If we don't remember history we are bound to repeat it. Now we are in a situation where we have families who are distraught because they have no idea where their loved one is being housed, whether it's in Yuba County or Sonoma County. We have 4383 citizens who have signed a petition to say, Will you give us an opportunity to tax ourselves so we can have basic mental health services provided in Mendocino County? So we are not asking for extravagant services, we are asking for basic mental health services. And my employees are the ones who see the mother's tears who say, We've been calling and we are not getting the services we need, or, We don't know where he is. Can you imagine that as a parent? Can you imagine having your child missing and you don't know where they are and nobody can help you in government? I can't. But that's where we are right now. I'm not trying to diminish the quality of the work we are getting from the current county employees and the quality of work we are getting from Redwood Quality Management. I'm not trying to diminish them. But what we have isn't working. We have a situation where the citizens have brought an initiative on the ballot to say we think we can do better and we want to tax ourselves. Who are we to say we don't approve of that because it might cost us more money? I don't think we're in that position. I don't think we are in that position because we are driving the boat. You get to decide how this works. I will clearly say to all five of you that I could specifically talk about your supervisorial district and I could name names of problem people who are consistently in our jail. We could use the word recidivism as easily as we could use the word criminal element. Let's talk about mental health recidivism. I could name the three frequent flyers in all five of your districts that are costing us $1 million a year. And that would be 15 people. I think it's fair to say that. We have to be smarter with this problem. We can't forget why we are doing the jobs we do. If you forget why you are doing the job you are doing then maybe we can have a one-on-one conversation because I know what all five of you ran on. I know your platforms. And nobody said, I want to get elected to the board of supervisors to make mental health worse. You're not for that. We're all in this together. So let's give it to the voters. Four supervisors, five supervisors, no supervisors. Let's give it to the citizens and allow them to make the decision. But don't predict the wrong things that are going to happen when you are charged with making those decisions now, as you are basically, subliminally telling us: that you are going to make the wrong decisions. If I didn't have trust in all five of you I would not be Sheriff of this County. I work for 4% of my salary right now. [Allman means he could retire and receive a pension that is 96% of his salary.] But I'm doing it because I love my job. If you can't see this as improving the quality of life in mental health then I need you to tell your constituents that. I do. But if you don't support this, then you need to support something that's a good alternative to improving the quality of life and improving public safety in Mendocino County. We need to step forward with a better idea or support this initiative. Thank you.”

HAMBURG: “But we do know that we have a very finite number of dollars and we know that if this initiative passes and, Sheriff Allman, I am all for the 4000+ people who signed this initiative being able to go to the voting booth and cast their ballot and the people of the county. You and the people who support this initiative have worked hard to get the signatures and you followed all the processes and there's going to be a vote and the people of the county will decide if they are going to be taxed this additional amount for the next five years. I'm not a big fan of the sales tax, it's regressive, it treats rich people and poor people the same. But it's the mechanism of choice. You feel that this 11-member panel that the board is going to help to choose along with the Board of Supervisors will make wise decisions about how to spend mental health dollars in Mendocino County for the next whatever it is, 30 years 40 years, for this facility and all. What really concerns me is the lack of of a coordinated and well distributed body of expertise and mental health systems planning organization and budgeting. I don't see that. I don't necessarily see what this 11-member panel will come up with because they are mostly political choices by the board. I don't see it on this board. I don't think the five of us, not a single one of us are mental health professionals. I think the people deserve to vote, I think that people will vote. But I am being asked on the basis of a one-page initiative to be a proponent of a $40 million expenditure that very well might cause the expenditure of general fund dollars but at least will cause a diminishment of the possibilities of a sales tax to fund other things that are very close to my heart. There were two things I wanted on the ballot this year. I wanted a road tax on the ballot and I wanted a tax to help the fire department on the ballot. If your initiative passes it's going to be that much harder to raise money for other things because people are — we are a poor county. We were able to get a library tax through but it was only 1/8¢. This is a significant tax and I just don't see it — and when I read that Beacon report [which the County's gold-plated analysis was based on] again over the weekend it says 'there is no specific information in this initiative but we are making this assumption.' I mean it is repeated over and over and over again. So I feel like I am being asked to, you know, the proverbial expression is to buy a pig in a poke. I don't see the level of detail for something as big as this in front of me."

ALLMAN: “Simplicity is part of the plan. If you notice, the word 'development' is in there, not construction. There are many words in there that we wanted to allow this board to have the creativity –“

HAMBURG: “This board! There's not a single mental health expert on this board, Tom!”

ALLMAN: “Supervisor Hamburg, why does it take 17 years for the citizens to say that a decision that was made in 1999 was incorrect? Why isn't someone on this board saying, Let's correct it?”

HAMBURG: “I personally do not know if it was the wrong decision.”

ALLMAN: “A sales tax was decided because a parcel tax is a very common tax in this county. Please keep in mind that in the summer time our deputy sheriffs are dealing with the tourists and visitors of this county with mental health issues and I don't think they are paying a parcel tax but they are certainly buying restaurant food and and using our roads. Their taxes will be collected and will hopefully pay for their portion of what they are utilizing. Fifty years from now I guarantee you I will not be alive but I hope we are going to have a mental health facility in 50 years. If we need a road tax, if we need a fire tax, I will support them. And that's the reason we put a sunset on this. Proposition 13 does not allow us to build basic infrastructure right now. I know we can't do everything at once. But the truth is we were doing nothing at the time. Nothing! I didn't see anybody coming forward to collect signatures for a road tax on this board. I know there was discussion of a road tax, I know there was discussion of fire tax, but I didn't see any action. And that's why this group of citizens and I said that we are going to take the action necessary.”

HAMBURG: “Yes, yes. You guys went first and you have the momentum. And congratulations! I'm not putting the effort down.”

ALLMAN: “If you don't want to support this, fine.”

CEO CARMEL ANGELO pointed out that the County's analysis was a "full build out" analysis and that it could be less.

ALLMAN ADDED, "I've been called a lot of things in my career. I don't think anybody has specifically called me an idiot. They might have behind my back. But I don't remember that. At this point I'm arguing for general fund dollars [for the Sheriff's department]. If anyone on this board thinks I'm dumb enough to put a proposition on the ballot that's going to be competing against General Fund dollars that I'm trying to get then I'm not the one who's an idiot. Because I am not going to allow my sheriff's office to be unfunded for something I put on the ballot. I'm smart enough to predict the future on some of this stuff. We have to look at John Dickerson. We have to look at some other public employee pension people who are spending lots of money and their own time and coming up with decisions and — to say maybe what we were doing in the past were mistakes. But if we make the same mistakes in the future how can we incorporate this new knowledge and still succeed? That's where we are. I am not going to compete against something else when I have deputy sheriffs I need to put on the street."

IN THE END the Board voted 4-1 to write a ballot statement supporting the initiative, Hamburg dissenting.

No one pointed out that there are other staffing models, especially models that involve greater use of stand-by personnel in the off hours which could significantly reduce the "full build out" 24/7 overly expensive model that Hamburg seems so worried about.

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Some history: "Perilous, Very Perilous"

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DO WE HAVE a new Pope? No puffs of pot smoke indicating new meat, and true to their policy of inane secrecy, KZYX has not announced either on their moribund website or informally that station old timer, Diane Hering, is or soon will be functioning as interim station manager. A smart and genuinely nice person, Ms. Hering will get 'er done in station mean time, a very mean time if history is precedent.

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SATURDAY, AUGUST 27: “GREAT DAY IN ELK”:-- parade at noon, followed by afternoon carnival, food, activities and live entertainment. barbecued tri-tip or veggie dinner 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. benefit for the Greenwood Community Center in Elk. For more information go to or email No dogs please.

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A letter in response to the newest Animal Shelter public expression presentations at the August 16 Mendocino County Board Meeting;

The current complaint against the shelter and county about the progress (or lack thereof, I guess) being made at the Mendocino County Animal Care Services Ukiah Shelter, is that the county has and is concentrating only on cosmetic upgrades; this being referred to as cosmetic-centric. (To this end, these folks have created what they call an animal-centric matrix, and for those of you out there who don't know, matrix is the new way to say list.) BUT, I heard complaints for the past year about the building in which the shelter is housed, the kennels for the dogs and cats, the lack of a private and quiet space for intake of animals, and etc etc.-- upgrades and changes which are in process or have been completed. Now that these particular complaints are no longer valid, I guess the next step is to disparage that labor.

The county CEO, and the entire Executive Office has become the newest scapegoat for shelter problems. At the board meeting, Ms. Angelo was labeled numerous times as soley responsible for the temporary revoking of several volunteers' privileges, and the termination of one volunteer.

I was at the shelter throughout the entire episode, and that scenario, to the best of my memory and knowledge, is not true. Also not true is the idea that volunteers were restricted--i.e. had their first amendment rights tampered with--because they wrote about problems at the shelter. What a farce (and how easy it is to scream about first amendment violations.) In fact there was and continues to be, daily criticism of the shelter and it's staff plus any volunteers not in agreement, in colorful and negative ways on very public venues. And the claim that other volunteers, besides the frequent fliers at the Board meetings, are too scared to voice their opinions at the podium is beyond ludicrous, for two reasons: first, because after all the slamming and negative pr the county and shelter have faced over the past year, I doubt any volunteer would be put on restriction for actions lesser than a serious crime. And two, why on earth would any volunteer be 'SCARED" of the repercussions if they spoke to the board, when week after week other volunteers have done just that for over one year. That line of thinking lacks rational thought. The volunteer who had her privileges revoked was told the reason at a board meeting earlier this year, a video of which is available online linked through the county website. Perhaps instead of crying foul some soul searching should ensue.

I would like to remind the people who dismiss any and all positive efforts being made at the shelter of the old adage: Rome was not built in a day. Whether Facebook folks can deal with that reality, we shall have to WAIT and see. It's really easy to sit back and take umbrage with everything; that time could actually be spent walking a dog or scratching a cat.



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James is a new teacher at Mendocino Middle School. Please email him directly if you have something available, or know of some who does. Ideally, I’d like a 2-bedroom place in the countryside within 10 to 15 miles of Mendocino. I'd prefer it to have a bathtub, and I'd prefer anything to carpet. I'd like to pay between $800 and $1200 (or less!) and not more than $1500. I don't have any children or pets, although my Dad's dog, a basset, will probably visit from time to time. Of course, it would be great if the place has a washer and dryer, but I'm realistic; all of the above are preferences, not necessities. I’m open, particularly if something special becomes available.

James Eastman

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Avenue Helianthus

Heirloom, Early Girl & Cherry Tomatoes

Corno di Toro, Gypsy, Bell, Pimento Sweet Peppers

Padrons, Jalapenos, Anaheim, Ancho, Criola Sella Chilis

Italian & Asian Eggplant, Zucchini & Patty Pan Squash

Walla Walla Onions, Garlic, Cucumbers, Basil, Parsley

Strawberries, Asian Pears

Sunflowers & Zinnias


Blue Meadow Farm, 3301 Holmes Ranch Rd, Philo 707-895-2071

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New Courthouse Projects Put on Hold Due to Funding Issues

Due to a projected significant shortfall in the funding stream for courthouse construction projects, on August 11, 2016, the Judicial Council of California (JCC) Court Facilities Advisory Committee (CFAC) voted to recommend to the JCC that all 23 current judicial branch courthouse construction projects – including the new Ukiah Courthouse – be grouped into four broad categories that would determine how far an individual project can proceed until adequate, stable funding is restored for the statewide courthouse construction program.

Acquisitions – Recommendation: Complete site due diligence, then hold

El Dorado Superior Court - New Placerville Courthouse

Inyo Superior Court - Inyo County Courthouse

Los Angeles Superior Court - New Eastlake Juvenile Courthouse

Mendocino Superior Court - New Ukiah Courthouse (complete second half of Acquisition, then hold)

“Approximately $1.4 billion was redirected, borrowed, shifted, and transferred from the Immediate and Critical Needs Account, and $110 million of the $250 million annual funds in the construction account—almost 45 percent—has been permanently redirected to other purposes that were never part of the original plan to replace the most immediate and critical courthouses,” according to Presiding Justice Brad Hill, Chair of CFAC. “We are trying to replace facilities that have severe security, seismic, ADA, space and other deficiencies. This is a matter of providing the public and all court users with safe and secure courthouses to access justice. Tens of thousands of Californians visit our courthouses on a daily basis—they deserve nothing less.”

Construction fund redirections during the state’s fiscal crisis and a decline in funds from reduced filings and fine and fee revenue have dramatically cut the funds available for the bonds needed to replace unsafe and substandard facilities and build court facilities that serve the needs of all court users.

The next steps will involve CFAC preparing a report for the JCC’s August 25-26 Meeting, and continuing funding advocacy efforts on behalf of the judicial branch and local courts and justice system partners with the Legislature.

For more information contact:

Christopher Ruhl, Court Executive Officer
Superior Court of California, County of Mendocino
100 N. State Street, Room 303
Ukiah, CA 954825

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On July 10, 2016 Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s office were summoned to a residence located off of Old River Road near Talmage Ca regarding a burglary. While at the location Deputies obtained video surveillance of suspect(s) burglarizing the residence. Deputies were able to identify the suspect in this case as Jarrett Williams, a 47-year old Lake County resident. Williams was found to have an arrest warrant in Mendocino County charging him with burglary. Investigators from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office learned Williams was also the suspect in several burglaries within the City of Ukiah. Continued investigation revealed Williams was captured on video surveillance in other burglaries in Mendocino County. Mendocino County Sheriff Investigators worked closely with detectives from the Ukiah Police Department and a BOLO (be on the look out) was issued for Williams as well as his vehicle. On 07/20/2016 Williams was contacted by Lake County Deputy Sheriff’s near Finley, in Lake County. Williams was arrested for the outstanding burglary warrant. Lake County Deputies also arrested Williams for burglaries which occurred in Lake County. Ukiah Detectives obtained a search warrant for Williams’ vehicle and responded with Investigators from both the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office and the Lake County Sheriff's Office to continue the investigation. Subsequently items linking Williams to several burglaries within Mendocino County was located. The locations of these burglaries ranged from Covelo to the Talmage area as well as residences within the Ukiah City Limits. The completed investigations have been submitted to the Mendocino County District Attorney’s Office by the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office and Ukiah Police Department. Charges requested include several counts of residential burglary, commercial burglary, grand theft auto, and possession of stolen property against Williams. Williams who was also arrested for burglaries in Lake County is currently held in the Lake County Jail on one million dollars bail.

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On August 15, 2016, at about 6:20 PM, a person called the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office and reported that they had seen a woman running from a campsite at a private campground located in the 17900 block of Highway 1, Fort Bragg, Ca. It was reported that the female victim was running from a male subject, screaming that she had been kidnapped. The female victim ran to Highway 1 where she promptly began hitchhiking. As Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputies responded they requested emergency assistance form any law enforcement officers in the area. A California State Parks Ranger responded and contacted the victim and the suspect, later identified as Randall Hagaman, 30, of Angel’s Camp, and stabilized the incident until a Mendocino County Deputy Sheriff arrived. The investigation by the deputy revealed that the victim had not been kidnapped, but had been in a verbal argument with the suspect, with whom she had come to Mendocino County for a camping trip. Further investigation revealed that there is an active domestic violence restraining order preventing Hagaman from being within 150 yards of the victim. Hagaman was arrested for the violation of the restraining order and found to have a firearm in his vehicle. Hagaman is prohibited by statute from possessing firearms due to the restraining order and his criminal convictions. Deputies also determined that Hagaman had produced forged evidence of registration for his vehicle. Hagaman was arrested for Possession of firearm by prohibited person, Violation of a domestic violence restraining order, and Forged vehicle registration, the firearm was seized, and Hagaman was lodged at the Mendocino County Jail with bail set at $25,000.

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On August 7, 2016 at 6:56 AM Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputies were dispatched the 13000 block of Powerhouse Rd. in Potter Valley regarding a domestic dispute where the male subject was stabbed in his shoulder. The Sheriff's Office was advised that the victim had walked to another residence on the property and would be awaiting our arrival. Upon arrival, Deputies contacted the victim, who indicated that he was involved in a domestic dispute with his wife Joaquina Marin, 34, of Potter Valley earlier this morning. Potter Valley Fire arrived on scene to attend to the victim’s injuries along with Ukiah Ambulance. The victim was bleeding from what appeared to be a stab wound to his left shoulder blade area. The victim indicated that during the argument that he was stabbed as he attempted to walk away from Marin who was holding their small child. The victim was transported to Ukiah Valley Medical Center for treatment for his injuries. Deputies then went to the second residence where they observed blood drops on the front porch. Once on the porch Marin came to the door holding her child. Marin admitted that there was a domestic argument while she was making coffee in the kitchen. As the victim started to walk out of the kitchen she threw a small kitchen knife which struck him in the back. Marin was placed under arrest for domestic violence and assault with a deadly weapon. Marin and Mendocino County Child Protective Services responded to care for their young child. Marin was transported and booked into the Mendocino County Jail for Domestic Violence/Inflicting Corporal Injury and Assault with a Deadly Weapon and is being held on 30,000.00 bail.

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Trust me, nobody believes the swill being fed to us by the corporate media. I read a lot of the on-line financial websites; they have the real news of the sorry state of the U.S. economy. And when I’m not staring at their pie charts and graphs, I’m talking to people at the Scranton PA flea market, where I’m selling my belongings to pay my taxes (and I discover I’m not alone).

There are many people who can barely afford a $1 item and will carefully count out small change or hand me a crumpled dollar they have stashed away. Meanwhile, I live in a rural area that’s supposed to be made richer by fracking (it isn’t unless you’re a farmer with 30 or 50 acres). You should see all the For Sale and For Rent signs out here. It’s also because the Republican legislature refused to put a 1% tax on the frackers. Instead they just added a $2 tax to a pack of cigarettes and every municipality keeps raising the school and property taxes because they are going broke.

This is not confined to my area. A friend in Wisconsin (a lawyer, no less) cannot earn enough to live on and pay her mortgage; her house is in foreclosure. She is hoping to get into charity housing.

These are the reasons both Trump and Sanders pulled in big crowds. Hillary will probably win, nothing will change, and when the next financial implosion occurs (which it will), I’ve got my fingers crossed that the revolution will finally happen. If not, we’d all better find a plot of land far away from the cities.

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Attached you will find a bilingual press release and photo of our new Executive Director who will start early September. Please be sure to attach the photo credit should you use the picture.

Please contact our commission chair for any questions. (Lucresha Rentería @ 961-1251)

Thank you for sharing.

Menaka Olson
FIRST 5 Mendocino
Communications Manager
166 East Gobbi St., Ukiah, Ca 95482
Tel 707.462.4453 Fax 707.462.5570

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Recall: FIRST 5 Mendocino hires a new Executive Director

Menaka Olson would like to recall the message, "FIRST 5 Mendocino hires a new Executive Director".

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To the Editor:

Frontier Management through its local facility, Mountain View Assisted Living & Memory Care, is honored and proud to serve the residents of Ukiah. This letter is in response to the article entitled “Mountain View Assisted Living in Ukiah cited by state; sued in death of resident,” July 29.

The tragedy of a family member’s death, no matter the circumstances, is dark, emotionally fraught, and presents a long road to healing. Our hearts go out to the family of Robert Stuefen. Bob was deeply loved by his family, and his care was their utmost concern.

Your article implies otherwise. Following are the facts to set the record straight and to clear the cloud of innuendo the article created.

Though the July 29 article states, “[Stephen] Garcia, on behalf of the family, filed the lawsuit against Mountain View …” Bob’s wife and other family members are rather upset that the article implies the “family” filed suit. A phone call to Pamela Stuefen by your staff would have confirmed this simple fact.

Additionally, Bob was not “walking unassisted and unattended” before he fell. He was walking with the assistance of his wife and his cane, and an LVN was present and assessed him at the time of the fall.

Bob passed away several days later with his loving wife, Pamela by his side. Mountain View Assisted Living & Memory Care believes that family should decide how to handle the details following a death. Mountain View wouldn’t presume to interfere with the highly personal family business following a loss.

We are prevented by federal and state laws from disclosing additional details regarding the health care Bob received while under our care. That said, many members of the Ukiah community and of Mr. Stuefen’s family have reached out to us in support, and we firmly believed that the Stuefen family and your readers are owed an apology. Bob Stuefen was deeply loved and his family provided him with the utmost in tender loving care. Journalism requires more than citing the ambiguity of an unverified lawsuit (and as the only source). We all deserve better. Especially Bob.

Colleen Papp, COO Frontier Management, LLC

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Ukiah Daily Journal Editor’s note: While we too lament the unfortunate circumstances, you could have saved yourself the trouble of a letter had you or someone from your company responded when we gave you opportunities to give your side of the story. All of the story came directly from the pages of the court document, and as you know, while Ms. Pamela Stuefen is a named defendant, there is a Mercedes Stuefen named as another plaintiff. Also, the State of California deficiency report issued to Mountain View in June - certainly a “verified” source of information - concluded that some family members were being denied visits with Mr. Stuefen, and the facility was not keeping complete and consistent records of this patient, especially with regard to his tendency to fall.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, August 17, 2016

Bradshaw, Chester, Chiles
Bradshaw, Chester, Chiles

RYAN BRADSHAW, Willits. Domestic battery.

TUCKER CHESTER, Fort Bragg. Controlled substance, court order violation.

CHRISTOL CHILES, Fort Bragg. Probation revocation.

R.Christoph, S.Christoph, Goedinghaus
R.Christoph, S.Christoph, Goedinghaus

ROBERT CHRISTOPH, Talmage. Pot cultivation, possession for sale.

SAGE CHRISTOPH, Talmage. Pot cultivation, possession for sale, probation revocation..

KIRSTEN GOEDINGHAUS, Calpella. Under influence.

Hagaman, Hanes, Howe
Hagaman, Hanes, Howe

RANDALL HAGAMAN, Angels Camp/Ukiah. Possession of firearm by prohibited person, violation of a domestic violence restraining order, and forged vehicle registration.

BRONWEN HANES, Boonville. Grand theft.

JACOB HOWE, Talmage. Domestic assault.

Martinez-Ramirez, Nelson, Pitman
Martinez-Ramirez, Nelson, Pitman

ANDRES MARTINEZ-RAMIREZ, Ukiah. Domestic assault, false imprisonment.

INESSA NELSON, Ukiah. Domestic assault, probation revocation.

TYLOR PITMAN, Ukiah. Burglary, DUI.

Ray, Richards, Scarberry
Ray, Richards, Scarberry

DANNY RAY, Ukiah. Petty theft, resisting, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer).

KENNETH RICHARDS, Fort Bragg. Under influence, probation revocation.

ANGELA SCARBERRY JR., Willits. Pot cultivation.

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KNYO is set up in such a way that I can just check the schedule so I don't screw anyone else up, and get on the air and play with the transmitter and test things in the middle of the night, and I did that a little earlier tonight (3 to 3:30am).

This sort of thing always reminds me of the middle 1980s when I was building transmitters in the kitchen, in Caspar. I'd turn on a transmitter that was a pile of parts a few hours before and put a stack of records on the changer and wander up the street in the fog with a pocket radio to see how far it went. We were close to the sea cliffs, across the cow field. Salt spray in the air. When the air was right the power wires would arc over the insulators to the wood of the telephone poles and gently snap and flash. Caspar is the only place I ever noticed that happening... Wait, no, that’s not right; I remember seeing that in San Francisco this last winter. Ward and Amy took us to a Thai restaurant, and it was raining like crazy off and on, and wires were arcing on several poles in the quiet between downpours.

In the middle-late 1980s I was teaching at the Whale School in Albion, among other things, doing radio drama over the phone from the Whale School live on KKUP in Cupertino, making little Tesla coils with the kids. I remember how magical it felt when Juanita and I would sit on the floor in the kitchen in our first place together, with the lamp off, playing with long streams of sparks from one of these homemade toys and, when our eyes had adjusted, admiring the little clouds of blue corona discharge around the corners of the woodstove and on everything else metal nearby. I still associate that calm, numinous, comforting /scientific/ feeling with the smell of ozone. And it's still a kind of magical experience turning something on that you’ve made with your hands, even though it's just familiar computers and the web anymore (on this end, anyway). And I got email from people who were listening, so, good.

Here's the recording of the short impromptu set of test music, ready to download. There's a little triumphant-sounding swearing in it; I'm just saying, in case that bugs you.

(If your email program doesn't show that as a clickable link, you can copy and paste it into your browser.)

Marco McClean


  1. LouisBedrock August 18, 2016


    THE year ‘s at late summer,
    And day ‘s at the morn;
    Morning ‘s at seven;
    The hill-side ‘s dew-pearl’d;
    The lark ‘s on the wing;
    The snail ‘s on the thorn;
    God ‘s in His heaven—
    All ‘s right with the world!

    (Weather Channel)

  2. Judy Valadao August 18, 2016

    HAMBURG: “This board! There’s not a single mental health expert on this board, Tom!”

    Didn’t expect a statement like that from Hamburg. It seemed he thought otherwise when speaking on the issue of the Hospitality Center in Fort Bragg and the OMG.

    • Lazarus August 18, 2016

      I think the BOS is not expert on anything…
      Vote YES on Allman’s tax, the alternative is unacceptable, they’ll dig up the extra monies from someplace.
      As always,

      • BB Grace August 18, 2016

        How is Stepping Up Inniative with it’s $29 Billion in resources unacceptable?

        Mendocino took $150K from Stepping Up, gave it to Allman who used it for training as if they never went to training. Stepping Up employs the power of the bench to be involved, and things are getting done. So what are we really building this jail for the mentally ill for? Holding criminally insane from other counties?

        I just got this email from Stepping Up Inniative:

        Event status:

        Not started (Register)
        Date and time:
        Tuesday, August 30, 2016 2:00 pm
        Eastern Daylight Time (New York, GMT-04:00)
        Change time zone
        Panelist(s) Info:
        • Sheriff Christopher Donelan, Franklin County, MA
        • Suzanne Watson, Pottawattamie County Community Services Director
        • Ed Hayes, Assistant Superintendent of Treatment and Programs, Franklin County, MA
        • Risë Haneberg, Senior Policy Advisor, Behavioral Health, CSG Justice Center
        • Will Engelhardt, Senior Policy Analyst, Behavioral Health, CSG Justice Center

        1 hour 30 minutes

        Hosted by the CSG Justice Center, with funding support from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance
        Grant funding often provides seed money to help agencies launch new programs or expand existing ones. However, once the grant has expended, finding additional funds to sustain a program can be challenging. This webinar will discuss how other funding streams can be leveraged, and partnerships developed, to help sustain a program.

        In this webinar, Sheriff Christopher Donelan and Ed Hayes, assistant superintendent of treatment and programs for Franklin County, MA—a Second Chance Act grantee—will provide insights on how engaging the business community led to the county program’s sustainability. Additionally, Suzanne Watson, community services director for Pottawattamie County, IA—a Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program grantee—will discuss how her county’s mental health court is sustained with help from county investments. Staff from The Council of State Governments Justice Center will also discuss their forthcoming publication, Reducing the Number of People with Mental Illnesses in Jail: Six Questions County Leaders Need to Ask.

        • Lazarus August 18, 2016

          Blah, Blah, Blah…get over yourself.
          I live in a environment where the inmates are running the flipping neighborhoods. Maybe you live an exclusive life somewhere safe from reality but most of us common folk do not.
          Is Allman’s plan perfect? hell no, but it’s a start, and you have to start somewhere. Getting Ortner out was “huge”…now the county needs more than, “can I put you on hold” when folk are begging for help.
          With all the dope in this country/county it’s amazing to me anything is happening at all.
          I’m voting YES and everyone I know is voting yes, this is Allman’s County, if you get my drift. His tax plan will win. Sounds like you got a problem with Allman so you say screw the mentals, if so, screw you!
          Now go spread your name dropping and bullshit on someone else.
          As always,

          • BB Grace August 18, 2016

            How is Stepping Up Inniative with it’s $29 Billion not an option?

            Let me answer: Stepping Up Inniative is not an option because Sheriff Allman isn’t doing it.

            I’m sorry Allman couldn’t be Mendo’s CEO because I bet Allman would not only be the most excellent CEO, but he would get us a Sheriff as great as him and together they would make Mendocino safe, and sound.

            I respect Allman allot, and to me, this idea of his is happening because the County is failing because they are not persuing Stepping Up Inniative even if Allman’s jail passes.

            If Ortner is out, where are folks going for observation? Maybe they just contract with the contractor now?

  3. Jim Updegraff August 18, 2016

    Mendocino County Clown of the Month: Supervisor Hamburg.

    I thought about doing a natiooal clown of the month but I am afraid every month it would be Deadbeat Donnie the village idiot.

    Giants: Cain performed as expected – Pittsburgh swept all 3 games Giants are now 9-21 since the all-star breaks. Bumgarner is next up – will be interesting to see how he does.

    Louis: I believe you are a fan of Chomsky – if so, an essay in the August issue of Harpers by Tom Wolfe – “The Origins of Speech-In the beginning was Chomsky” is a must read for you.

    Oakland As: I rather not comment on their performance. I might use language unsuitable for AVA readers.

    • LouisBedrock August 18, 2016

      I read it Jim–and cancelled my subscription.
      This is part of the letter I sent to HARPER’s:

      “”I admire both Noam Chomsky and Daniel Everett.  When I read Don’t Sleep, there Are Snakes, which is a wonderful book, I was excited by the challenges it posed to the theories of Chomsky and others who had become the authoritative voices in the field of linguistics.  This is science:  there’s always a brilliant newcomer to shake up the dominant paradigm.

      I would have enjoyed reading a scholarly article on the implications of Everett’s work for the theories of Chomsky and other establishment linguists.  However, Tom Wolfe’s article is despicable: it’s a hatchet job on Noam Chomsky.  Everett and Chomsky are reduced to stock characters in Wolfe’s snarky little melodrama.  Harper’s should be collectively ashamed of printing such an article.”

      Jim, I was glad to see your comment. Hadn’t heard from you for a few days.
      Did you read my comment in response to your comment–Monday or Tuesday, I believe.

      Happy all is well with you.

  4. Jim Updegraff August 18, 2016

    Hi Louis- yes, I did see your comments but was having computer problems and could sent out messages.

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