- Blackbird Questions
- Don't Call Me No Progressive
- Housing Extortion
- AG & AH — Too Big, Too Expensive. No Services
- Lots Of Questions, No Answers
- Marge Handley? Marge Handley? No Way
- Doug Bosco: The Curse That Keeps On Giving
- Limitless Growth
- Weenie Wagger
- Skaggs As 57 Poster Boy
- Surprise, Surprise, More Bad News On The Climate
- Chiefs Say No To AF
- Book Him
I am wondering why there has been no more information about Blackbird Farms and their permit application.
Anderson Valley has a not-so-great history with negative experiences for children and youth in “caring-for-you” facilities. As a community, we need to clearly understand who is doing what and why. This kind of operation absoltuely needs community endorsement before it expands.
Who or what is Pathways in Education?
What is their educational background and philosophy?
Who are the clients? How are they selected and how long are they here? Why the van transportation?
What is the nature of the program? What does a daily schedule look like?
What is the background and licensing of any adult working in the program? How are they recruited and what are they paid? What is the turnover rate?
What local, county or state agencies license and monitor the “Pathways/Blackbird” program and how frequently?
The above questions are a start. What are we allowing when an operation of this sort enlarges from 36 to 292 people? What are the dollars involved? Let us begin thinking about consequences. When and where should the COMMUNITY CONVERSATION begin?
DON'T CALL ME NO PROGRESSIVE
In 1942 I was born into a middle class family of citified, rural raised, working folks. After vulcanizing recap tires my dad went to work in the Vallejo shipyards during the war before getting a job selling insulation to those early FHA homes built without it. In 1949 when I was seven he had a brain tumor and worked no more. Mom worked in the Richmond shipyards as a pipe fitter during the war and with their combined income they bought one of those FHA tract homes in an unincorporated area snuggled between Richmond and San Pablo. After dad went down she got a job taking care of the house and young child of the principal at my elementary school. The house they bought in 1945 cost $5,000 with a 20 year mortgage. In 1965 when it was paid off in full I computed that the interest had bumped the total cost to $20,000.
Once dad got sick we didn't have family car, mom didn't drive, dad couldn't drive and brother Bill, thirteen years older than me, was living in Berkeley. At 20 years old Bill helped make the house payments from then on.
This teensy bit of personal history is meant to establish that we didn't have much money. In fact if there was a poverty index back in those days we most likely lived below it. But we survived just fine.
I never wore rags. At the beginning of each school year I got a new pair of jeans and a new pair of sneakers. Mom mended the jeans when necessary and darned my socks - teaching me how to do so in the process. She cut branches off the juniper bush that grew out front and wired them together to make our Christmas trees under which there were always some presents for me.
Our garbage bill was always paid and the always black garbage man would go all the way into the back yard to empty our can into his and taking it back into the truck. Every year he was left a Christmas bonus for the good service.
Early on the iceman would carry blocks of ice on his shoulder into the icebox in the kitchen. When technology changed we were able to buy a refrigerator. Until I graduated from high school the milkman would come by to leave fresh cream top milk in glass jars, margarine and eggs on our front porch.
Shorty was the ice-cream man who wore a tall white cooks hat and drove a small boxy cart like rig with an awning over it that pulled two trailer carts, also with awnings, like a train that held the ice-cream. It was all red. He came by after school most days letting us know he was there by ringing a bell and I always had the nickel needed for a treat.
I didn't get an allowance like the other kids in the neighborhood but I did start early mowing lawns with a push mower and took a paper route delivering the Richmond Independent by bicycle to 20 or 30 houses when I got old enough to do so. I was able to buy my own fad clothes and treats. The one new bike I had (my previous bike was a hand down from brother Bill) I won by guessing the number of beans in a huge jar at Capwells department store in Oakland.
All of our travel around was done by the Key System bus - Richmond, Berkeley, Oakland and even occasionally San Francisco. One Fourth of July mom actually took me on a bus to China Town in Oakland where we were led down an alley then down a flight of stairs to a basement packed full of every imaginable type of illegal fireworks. There were rockets up to three feet long but we settled for a few packets of regular firecrackers and a handful of barrel bombs that were silver with a green fuse that would keep burning in the water once lit and thrown in.
Back to dad and his brain tumor. He had just signed up for Kaiser-Permanent medical coverage and had not one but two major brain surgeries under the $9 a month family plan and a dollar for each visit. Later it went up to $11 a month and when I started my family in the early sixties I believe it cost me $20 dollars a month but still only a dollar per visit. By this time minimum wage was up to a $1.15. 17 hours of work at month at minimum wage bought you medical coverage for the entire family.
So here we are now some 55 to 70 years of progress later. What do you think of all the improvements? The only improvements I see are that now it is a white guy that picks up the garbage and a black guy is president. Over all though conditions are now worse for blacks.
As I see it progress is growth and always costs more. Continuous, unstoppable growth is cancer. Progress is tied to economics used to be promoted and manipulated exclusively by those people we call conservatives. The progression now is that the liberals as well as progressives have jumped on board. In a reasonable society a loaf of bread would cost the same each year — period..
Please don't call me no progressive.
How has housing become so outrageously expensive? In the last 30 years, housing has gone up 300%, while income for the majority of people has gone up only 9%. [from YES! Magazine, Fall 2015]
For decades, the standard ratio of monthly housing cost to income was 25%, or one-fourth of your income. Now, because of the gross inflation of housing prices, the greedmeisters have decided it's ok to pay 33%, nearly a third of your income, on housing. Also for decades, banks would loan on only one income. "But that's not fair," some people said. "Together our incomes qualify for a mortgage." And so it came to pass that dual incomes can be counted. What did that do? It allowed sellers to raise their prices because then people could afford more...And what does that mean? It's now very difficult for the average family to live without both partners working. With both partners working, who has time to take care of the house and the property, let alone kids? We laughed about this in the late '70s when we heard "old people" talk about that as if it were bad! Now we're older, wiser and can see the detrimental effect this has had. Taking care of a house, the property and kids is actually more than a full time job. So either the kids, house and property suffer, or you need to make enough extra money to pay others to take care of those things for you... but nowadays most of us are unable to make that kind of money.
Real Estate website Redfin has concluded that 83% of California's homes and rentals are unaffordable on a teacher's salary. What happens to a community when the most vital workers cannot afford to live in it? And to add insult to injury, for years now real estate agents have been promoting "bidding wars" between prospective buyers, and even renters, forcing prices to climb even higher.
We are conditioned to accept this by realtors and others justifying over-inflated prices with comments like, "Well, if you want to live here, you may have to make compromises! Just be thankful this place is available at all — they could be renting only to vacationers." "The owners are making a sacrifice by providing housing for the community, even if they're asking more than people want to pay." "Other people are charging even more, you should be grateful!" "If you don't like the prices here, move to Arkansas!"
And so we get five and six different income earners all crammed into one small apartment. "You should be thankful you have a place at all— it could be like Tokyo, or NY, or LA, or SF — $1,800 a month for a BUNK in a house with 15 other people.
Yes, let's justify the ridiculously over-inflated rents and housing prices that affluent newcomers, landlords, real estate agents, house flippers, developers, speculators and "market forces" have created. Market forces are based on greed, on maximizing profit; Housing is a RIGHT not a privilege! But we have made it into a business- and according to Milton Friedman, who won the Nobel Prize in Economics, "the only goal of business should be to maximize profits, regardless of the social and environmental costs."
It may be legal, but it is NOT moral. It is government-sanctioned extortion.
If you own property and want to rent it, consider not asking as much as you possibly can! Maybe consider renting on a sliding scale basis, asking for what you need, and what is fair, rather than the most you can get; rather than expecting someone else to pay for your vacation home for you...
Finally, I will say that not all realtors are greedmiesters. Some really do want to play fair. If you are looking for a home, I hope you will ask around until you find one.
AG & AH — TOO BIG, TOO EXPENSIVE. NO SERVICES
My name is Nancy Sutherland, I am the recently resigned chair of the Behavioral Health Advisory Board. I am writing as an informed, concerned citizen of Mendocino County, addressing my concerns with Ballot Measures AG and AH, the Sheriff’s mental health facility sales tax increase. I want to express my appreciation to the Sheriff and the concerned citizens who clearly voiced their willingness to put their money where their mouth is by signing the initiative petition. The initiative is evidence of the public’s recognition that the situation is critical. We as a community must begin to think outside the box for solutions. The County must financially support mental health services.
However, this initiative does not allocate one single dollar for services to our mentally ill friends, family, or neighbors (housed or not housed.) Its sole solution is to raise an estimated $37,000,000 to build an extravagant, unnecessary building or buildings in which mental health services may (or may not) be provided. I repeat, Zero funds for services.
For many years the County has over-relied on an all or nothing approach to the delivery of mental health services. The “all” being hospitalization and the “nothing” being a dearth of community-based outreach, pre-crisis, stabilization and post crisis services.
The 16-bed psychiatric hospital, presumably located in Ukiah is unrealistic. Very few small counties have the resources to maintain a 16 bed psychiatric hospital. Stringent State regulations, the unavailability of professional, experienced, licensed and credentialed 24/7 staff are among the prohibitive issues. The supporters of the initiative have not done a needs assessment or a staffing viability analysis. In fact, they have not consulted the County, in connection with ANY related issue, including Medi-Cal reimbursement and the stability of other mental health service funding sources. They are concerned with a building, not the reality of day to day, hour to hour service provision.
In July of 2016 the CEO’s office at the request of the Board of Supervisors provided a detailed, evidence-based financial analysis of the County’s cost for the proposed mental health facility. The analysis concluded the County would need to find approximately $4.85 million annually to fulfill the Sheriff’s vision. Not only are taxpayers asked to pay a one half cent sales tax for a new building, we are being asked support the diversion of up to $4.85 million each year from other vital County programs, services and reserves. The plan creates an excessive, unnecessary burden on everyone; the homeless, the disabled, the elderly, the family trying to get ahead, send their kids to college, or buy a home. Everyone who lives and shops in Mendocino County will be paying more and receiving less.
The set aside of $3,700,000 (10%) for a training center is appalling. It is an unnecessary and inappropriate use of a mental health facility funding. The County already has training facilities, including the Sheriff’s own training center…. just not enough training. For example, the County generously allocated funds to participate and implement recommendations from the highly acclaimed Stepping Up Initiative. a national alliance of Public Safety leaders and Mental Health professionals. Where did that money go? The Behavioral Health Advisory Board has been asking for months. To our knowledge, there has been no participation, no training.
Nothing I’ve said so far negates the fact… our mental health delivery system desperately needs increased community funding, but not funding that could potentially bankrupt the County or build a building that may be underutilized or never used at all.
Mendocino County needs a limited voluntary/non-voluntary Psychiatric Health Facility (PHF) as those who knew and miss Steve Neuroth can attest. However, a 16-bed facility is not the answer. We also need a voluntary crisis residential facility. The County already has partial funding and is currently planning just such a facility that can be primarily funded with current resources. A residential substance abuse treatment facility exists in Ukiah. We need money to provide individuals services there. We have a substance use disorder outpatient treatment program. We need increased funding for increased services and new services in Ukiah and all communities from Covelo to Gualala. In all cases increasing funding for preventive, stabilization and post-crisis services has proven effective in reducing hospitalization and long-term residential substance abuse treatment.
Instead of the costly, redundant building project advocated by the Sheriff, providing funds for the services mentioned above, and increasing or providing new funds for the following services would provide real benefit to the mentally ill residing in our communities and reduce the need for hospitalization.
2. Outreach and access to mental health and substance abuse services in all Mendocino County Communities.
3. Wrap around case managed services designed to keep people home, connected and self-sufficient to the best of their abilities with dignity and respect.
4. A strong, effective co-occurring disorder treatment/case management program.
5. Increased training for law enforcement, jail personnel and other first responders.
6. Improved access to psychiatric services.
These services cost money. $37,000,000 allocated over five years would go a long way to providing them. The Mental Health Facility Sales Tax Increase does not provide one dollar for ANY mental health service — ever. Where is your tax money going? A building. Is a building with no actual services (including the 16-bed hospital) what you think the priority should be? Build it and they will come is a fantasy — a dream, not a plan.
The Initiative’s website
is misinforming you when it says the five-year, 1/2 cent sales tax will raise funds “so we can appropriately diagnose and treat those suffering from addiction and mental health problems in Mendocino County.” That is not what the initiative does! It builds a building! No diagnosis, no treatment. That takes people, not bricks and mortar.
After years of neglect and mismanagement the County has put together a new team that, while painfully aware of funding limitations, is competent, energetic, creative and community-based. Dr. Jenine Miller, Tammy Moss-Chandler and Camille Schraeder are working day and night to provide the services this community needs and deserves. Support them. Get involved where and when you can. Demand that County agencies fulfill their mandated responsibilities with transparency and good faith, and lobby at the federal, state and local level for more money for services, education, training and competitive salaries — not for buildings.
Please vote NO on Measures AG and AH in November. In the meantime ask questions, become informed.
LOTS OF QUESTIONS, NO ANSWERS
Letter to the Editor
Questions for the County Mental Health Trio:
Last night the Ukiah Mental Health Trio of Jenine Miller (MH Director), Tammy Moss Chandler (HHSA Director) and Camille Schraeder (Redwood “Quality Management Company” and “Community Services”) came to Fort Bragg. The event was not well publicized or the room would have been filled but many of those who came have ongoing front line experience with the Mental Health services our family member/friend DOES NOT have. Here are some questions that still need answers.
When someone needs a psychiatry appointment, why do you subject the person to an “Assessment” that takes two weeks AND to a 30-day wait for an appointment with a psychiatrist? The Assessment isn’t even done by a nurse or doctor.
Why would you put a Psychiatric Crisis Center in downtown Fort Bragg in the Bank of America building? What are your opinions on a person’s right to privacy and dignity?
Fort Bragg needs an Open Mental Health Medical Clinic one day a week, as we had before. Why do you respond with the suggestion of using a Clinician instead of a doctor or nurse? Mental illnesses are medical conditions and we don’t want a gatekeeper slowing the process of treatment with a doctor or nurse.
Why wouldn’t you tell us what psychiatrists are available in Fort Bragg, on what days of the week and where their offices are?
Why do you do nothing about family members being told to kick a gravely disabled loved one out on the street in order to be conserved and receive support and treatment?
Why is MCDH (Coast Hospital) so inferior to Adventist Health in treating patients in a psychiatric crisis, what can you do about it, and why don’t you do something like provide transportation to inland hospitals?
The County Mental Health Budget (online) is $27 million. Why do you always muddy the waters by saying, “No, it’s only $15 million and we have to submit paperwork to get it”? Well, submit the damn paperwork and shut up about it, and tell the truth that there is $27 million for Mental Health services and you only use $5 million of it to treat Adult Patients.
You made the point that 300 people in Los Angeles right now are awaiting placement in a psychiatric hospital so that’s why you have trouble getting timely placements for our people in psychiatric crisis. Isn’t this a perfect argument to vote YES on Measures AG and AH so we have our own psychiatric hospital and spend some of that $27 million here?
Why is the Patient’s Rights Advocate invisible again, now that you did not renew the contract of the independent Grace Fantulin RN?
Why did you take up so much of our time last night with your boring and mostly incomprehensible Power Point (slideshow)? Many people in the audience wanted to ask questions and get answers and that was cut short.
MARGE HANDLEY? MARGE HANDLEY? NO WAY
To the Editor:
A year ago I would have said that there wasn’t a chance that I would write a letter in support of medical cannabis. I always perceived that medical marijuana was a joke and just an excuse for potheads to get high.
I have been taking anti-inflammatories for 10 years because of severe joint pain. This medication is hard on your liver and your kidneys and it is prudent to get both checked on a yearly basis to be sure no damage has been done.
About six months ago, Jude Thilman from the Dragonfly Dispensary in Fort Bragg spoke at our Rotary Club meeting about the benefits of medical cannabis. After I heard her very persuasive presentation as to the benefits, I decided that I really had nothing to lose if I tried it. I stopped taking my medication to see if I really still needed it and within several days I could barely walk because of the pain and throbbing in my joints. I was able to get a prescription for the cannabis which is required, and went over to Fort Bragg and bought the cannabis tincture. She told me that there might not be a noticeable benefit for a few weeks. Exactly eight days later I woke up in the morning, hopped out of bed and suddenly realized there was no pain — no throbbing joints. I also convinced a friend who is suffering from Lyme disease to try it and she says she hasn’t felt this pain free in years.
The thing that I was unaware of until I heard Jude’s talk is that CBD tinctures are NOT psychoactive…one will not get high from this form of medical cannabis and I have been further educated lately to find that there is a group of women in Willits who are breeding a special plant that will be totally free of THC.
I see the emerging cannabis industry as something that can be a cutting edge industry for our community as well as the County. Let there be labs so testing can be done. Let there be dispensaries where people who are in pain can buy the product, but let it be legal and taxed and regulated like all other business and agricultural products, and let it bring legitimate jobs to our City.
Times change and new information becomes available. It is important not to get stuck in the past with perceptions that we have carried over from childhood.
I believe we have an opportunity to create an industry that will benefit society in many ways. One thing is for sure — if we don’t, someone else is going to and they will then reap the benefit of the jobs and sorely needed income to the City/County.
I want to make one thing very clear. I have never smoked pot or taken products that will make me high. I have no interest in that whatsoever. I think we should embrace medicinal cannabis and quit calling it medical marijuana. There is a difference.
DOUG BOSCO: THE CURSE THAT KEEPS ON GIVING
We live in a country where a petroleum engineer was appointed to head the EPA by President Obama without embarrassment. It would seem less controversial that a lawyer was appointed to the California Coastal Conservancy and now serves as chairman. A biographical excerpt of Doug Bosco who has served at this government agency since 2003 reads: "A lifelong advocate of fishery and natural resource conservation, Mr. Bosco authored the California Wilderness Act, the Smith River National Recreation Area Act, the Klamath Trinity River Restoration Act, the Hupa Yurok Settlement Act and the Laguna de Santa Rosa National Wildlife Preserve Act. As a member of the California Legislature (1978-82), Mr. Bosco authored a number of environmental measures, including the California Renewable Resources Investment Act. He is a past member of the California Industrial Welfare Commission and sits on a number of charitable boards."
I have never read any of those pieces of legislation or measures, but I expect that they are all compromises with the immediate stakeholders in which a lawyer's skill might be useful. Whether these compromises serve the welfare of the greater public and their expressed interest in preserving the natural environment is probably arguable. But it is clear that Mr. Bosco has had his hands in many controversies, settlements and agreements.
Now he is appearing before the court representing Gualala River Timber Company in the ensuing controversy over the Dogwood Timber Harvest Plan. In case anyone has not noticed, this should be viewed as a significant conflict of interest and perhaps another indicator of how industry manages to insinuate itself in government and promote its interests.
Unmoderated growth is the credo of the cancer cell and industrial capitalism. The delusion that limitless growth is possible, even healthy, is behind pretty much any financial scandal. This includes the most recent instance at Wells Fargo. Every one of these events inspires another new plan for preventing another one.
Letter to the Editor,
I just wanted to take the time to let the paper know that somewhere along the lines they have lost sight of innocent until proven guilty. When the paper only prints one side of a story it does more damage to people and their loved ones.
Making it up as the paper goes along, mixing up court testimony even as far as mixing up the stories.
But it seems the paper has a habit of only printing the District Attorney's version of events.
Does not a coin have two sides? Is there not up and down? What about hot and cold?
Somehow it seems that the Anderson Valley Advertiser has become biased to the District Attorney and has once again forgotten about innocent until proven guilty.
I believe this to be the truth, time and time again the paper slanders those who have not even been proven guilty.
It seems to be the order of the day there, making light of people's problems.
I wonder, does the paper realize that it has a tremendous responsibility to accurately record the news and events around Mendocino County?
You may be wondering why I have even taken the time to write the paper concerning this important issue. Well, let me tell you. People read the paper and some, not all, believe what they read and are influenced by what they read.
Then when it comes time for somebody who is truly innocent to go to trial, not only do they have to deal with the District Attorney, they have to deal with the public who has been swayed by the stuff that has been written in the paper based on half of the story. The district attorney's story.
In essence, it deprives the defendant to a fair trial. The papers have printed half the story. That's right, I said papers!
It's hard enough for a truly innocent man to have a fair trial without the papers, let alone with them.
I would only ask your paper to consider what has been written. Think about those who may be innocent. There truly are people accused of things that may not actually be that way others portray them.
You may not print this letter in your letters to the editor, but I would hope you would have the fortitude to do so.
Incarcerated in Mendocino County Jail
Ed reply: The writer is the guy who exposed himself to little girls at a business bordering Alex Thomas Plaza. You show the world your penis but hide your name, McMurphy? Off with both, we say.
SKAGGS AS 57 POSTER BOY
Have you checked out the facebook page in Mendoland? District Attorney Eyster uses Chris Skaggs as an example of who will be let out if Proposition 57 passes. It's not Proposition 57 that lets him out, it's Mr. Eyster who let him out. The deal Chris Skaggs made was this: for his cooperation all charges in this case will be dropped and they were, even the lady he punched in the face who picked Skaggs out of a lineup — charges were dropped. The 13 years which he is doing right now has nothing to do with this case that I got 183 years for. I really hope he does get out for selfish reasons only — he will look over his shoulder until he doesn't have to anymore. It's funny though, the prison system in California is huge, right? But I've come across two of his cellmates and he claims to be a "cop killer," a "gangster," and everyone knows I fired that gun. I never denied it. I just didn't try to kill anyone. I am ashamed of my actions and it's crazy to me that the guy who made a 96-page statement claims my crime? Why am I doing a death sentence and he will be out soon? Thanks Mr. Eyster. I hope you sleep well at night and I'll bet you anything the deal you made with him bites you in the ass.
Vote yes on proposition 57!
High Desert State Prison, Susanville
SURPRISE, SURPRISE, MORE BAD NEWS ON THE CLIMATE
In my letter of September 11th I deferred commenting on Asian typhoons that affect China, Japan, Korea and the Philippines have grown 50% stronger in the last 40 years due to warming seas. These giant storms have caused considered damage and one in China killed 229,000 people and destroyed 6m buildings, New studies published in Nature Geoscience showed that typhoons in the north-west Pacific intensified by 12-15% on average since 1977; categories 4 and 5 doubled and even tripled in some regions and was marked for those storms that hit landfall. The study was clear that future global warning as projected by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change of the UN would heat the oceans in the region and lead to more intense typhoons. I would comment that in the Spartly and Paracel Islands which consists of low lying small islands, reefs and bank which have been the source of conflict between China, Taiwan, Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei their bases and the land mass may well be destroyed by rising seas and violent typhoons. The World Bank in a recent report stated air pollution is the fourth leading risk factor for deaths worldwide and air pollution costs the world trillions of dollars a year. It is estimated it costs the U. S. $45bn. According to World Health Organization air pollution now kills prematurely worldwide one in 10 people every year. As one who has to use an inhaler twice a day I can attest to the air pollution problem. More recent data has come up on the destruction of earth's wilderness and I shall defer comment to a later letter.
In peace and love,
CHIEFS SAY NO TO AF
To the Editor:
The members of the Mendocino County Fire Chiefs Association represent the 22 separate fire agencies within our county, and meet on a regular basis in an effort to network, share resources and stay current on local affairs.
Our association appreciates the well-meaning attempt to self-regulate the ballooning marijuana industry in our County, but finds that Measure AF is plagued with inconsistencies to current law, and does not directly address the effect of widespread cultivation and processing to our environment or the impact to local fire agencies. Additionally the actions of the writers of this initiative seemed to have purposely circumvented and bypassed environmental and/or public review showing no regard or empathy to those that choose not to participate in the cultivation or processing of marijuana, but may be subjected or exposed to the unwanted effects caused by a neighbor’s actions.
Our county fire agencies, many of which are fully staffed by volunteers, have been directly affected by the cultivation and processing of marijuana, much of it identified as medicinal. These fire agencies have responded to assist county and state agencies with environmental cleanups at numerous grow sites, and have had to respond to various calls for service including medical assistance, structure and vegetative fires related to the cultivation and processing of marijuana.
Our Association questions Measure AF’s recognition and allowance of the use of volatile solvents such as liquefied petroleum gas, alcohol, and other flammable agents and asphyxiates. These products used in the process for concentrating THC to manufacture hash oil have the potential to produce many unwanted results. Our county fire agencies have well documented accounts of the accidental explosions with fire, burn injuries, fatalities and fires into our wildland urban interface caused by these processes.
Our county fire agencies recognize that almost any human interface with our environment has the potential to trigger uncontrolled and unwanted results including accidental fires, impacting public and private lands, and put our firefighters at risk.
Please allow our elected officials and legislature to create and enforce the law so that all of our county residents are represented fairly and equally.
Please join with our local fire agencies and support “No on Measure AF.”
Carl Magann, President
Mendocino County Fire Chiefs Association
Regarding “Jail time — not fines — needed for Wells Fargo CEO S. Stumpf, Lawrence McQuillan explains that millions of accounts were opened for Wells Fargo customers without their knowledge. Wells Fargo CEO and Board Chairman John Stumpf testified before the US Senate Banking Committee on Sept. 20 and provided a prime example of why the American public is so angry with the Wall Street elite. As Sen. Elizabeth Warren pointed out, in several reports, Stumpf told Wall Street investors that cross-selling (the action or practice of selling an additional product or service to an existing customer) was a major reason for investing in Wells Fargo. One goal which had been set by upper management was for every Wells Fargo customer to carry eight different products.
This of course, put pressure on thousands of low-level employees to open new accounts. During the time this fraud took place, the stock rose by approximately 30 points. Since Stumpf possessed several thousand shares, his personal portfolio gained over $200 million!
The $19 million he received in compensation was simply the tip of the iceberg. While Stumpf testifies that he disagrees that this was a major fraud, 53,000 low-level employees who were fired for their participation in the scam sit at home realizing that it is business as usual.