- Blankfort Exhibit
- Stoen Accusation
- Little Dog
- Mural Preservation
- Trim Biz
- Cannabis Commissioner
- BOS Remarks
- Pet Adoptions
- Funny Guys
- Remembering Rena
- Greenhouse Access
- Yesterday's Catch
- Military Madness
- Chaos Reigns
- Economic Crime
- Humane Exclusion
- Broadband Meeting
- Delta Activists
JEFF BLANKFORT’S PHOTO EXHIBIT at Italian Cultural Center
The Children of Rome
Photographs by Jeffrey Blankfort
In January 1966, San Francisco-based photojournalist Jeffrey Blankfort, arrived in Rome on the first of his many trips to Italy, where he stayed for six months, learning the language, enjoying the food and the city's remarkable beauty but most of all its people and, in particular, its children.
Following his return from Italy, Blankfort began photographing the emerging political struggles of the time, among them the protests against the war in Vietnam and the Black Panthers. His photographs have been published in TIME, Newsweek, Rolling Stone, Saturday Evening Post, New York Times, Ramparts, San Francisco Chronicle and major publications in Europe, including L'Espresso and Panorama.
More of Blankfort's photographs can be viewed on his website: www.jeffblankfortphotography.com
Wednesday, May 10 - 6:30pm, Opening and Artist Reception
On view: May 11 - June 9
Italian Cultural Institute, 601 Van Ness Avenue, San Francisco
TIM STOEN TAKEN TO CA SUPREME COURT BY ROBERT FOREST
Knowing that you have followed various elements of the Robert Forest case, we thought you would want to see the press release below, which links to the Accusation filed with the California Supreme Court. Please feel free to reach out directly to either indicated media contact. If you can’t reach them for any reason, contact me and I’ll chase them down for you.
Jonathan Bernstein, President, Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc.
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Accusation Filed in California Supreme Court Against Mendocino County Deputy District Attorney Tim Stoen, Elk, CA — May 3, 2017 - On April 7, 2017, Robert Forest, a private citizen and small business owner from Elk, CA, filed an Accusation
in the California Supreme Court against Mendocino County Deputy District Attorney Tim Stoen. The Accusation alleges that DDA Tim Stoen engaged in unethical and illegal conduct in his handling of a criminal prosecution which occurred in 2006-2008. The allegations made against DDA Stoen in the Accusation range from the destruction of material evidence to the intimidation of a witness. While the Complaint that Mr. Forest initially filed with the California State Bar contained 11 allegations against DDA Stoen, the Accusation focuses on 6 of the 11 allegations including the following:
- intentionally destroying and/or allowing evidence to be destroyed including the recordings of 911 calls that were made by percipient witnesses to law enforcement;
- failing to disclose and/or concealing the existence of material evidence including the existence and identity of percipient witnesses and that the alleged “victim” suffered from a serious mental illness (schizophrenia);
- intentionally overcharging the case as a felony in an effort to obtain an improper psychological advance over the defendant for the purpose of coercing a guilty plea to a misdemeanor;
- putting improper pressure upon and/or intimidating a material witness;
- abusing his subpoena power by subpoenaing an 11-year-old child to testify at trial against her father even though she had absolutely no knowledge of the incident that was the subject matter of the criminal prosecution; and,
- refusing to follow the orders of his superiors in the District Attorney’s Office to reduce the criminal charges from a felony to a misdemeanor.
The Accusation requests the California Supreme Court to impose discipline against Mr. Stoen including the revocation of his license to practice law in the State of California.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Frank Roberson, spokesperson for Robert Forest, 775-997-3095, firstname.lastname@example.org; David Kindopp, attorney for Robert Forest, 707-462-4080, email@example.com
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “O yea, you better believe I was globally-warmed today, but they turned on the sprinkler for me and I had a heckuva good time jumping around in the cool.”
WHY ON EARTH…?
To the Editor:
It is shocking that the Board of the Redwood Empire Fairgrounds would approve the painting over of the historic Fine Arts Building murals. When these murals were originally painted in 1978, it was huge community event. When they were restored in 1995, it was, once again, a huge community event.
These murals were not inexpensive to create. The initial cost was more than $10,000. The final cost of restoration was more than $5,000. And these are 1978 and 1995 dollars.
For 39 years these murals have been an integral part of this community. And contrary to what the Fairgrounds says, it is not too late to save them. Even if painted over, the new paint can be easily removed using modern technology. The recent concrete patches can also be removed and proper repairs made. There is this thing called “art restoration”.
These murals deserve to be preserved. And the community needs to demand it. It was the community that came together and raised the money for the restoration in 1995. We absolutely can do it again.
I urge the Fairgrounds to stop any and all work that is happening on the murals, reach out the community, and allow us to once again save these pieces of our heritage. And please put in policies so this never happens again.
William French, Ukiah
THE ABOVE LETTER from William French of Ukiah rightly complains that this mural is being painted over. Why? In an otherwise bleak collection of unadorned buildings at the Ukiah Fairgrounds, this mural and the others in the Fine Arts building are things of beauty. What possible reason can there be for destroying art in, of all places, the Fine Arts Building? The one reprinted here was rendered by the late Michael Miller, Ed Cassell, and Kathy Shearn circa 1974-75.
LAST FRIDAY NIGHT, ABC 7 NEWS ran an interesting documentary piece on the unhappy experiences of many women working in Humboldt County's marijuana industry. I can't recall reports of sexual violence against women laboring in the dope harvests out of Mendocino County, but given our immediate proximity to HumCo I'm sure there have been plenty of episodes similar to the horror stories from our neighbors to the north.
BUT THE DIFFERENCE between the industry in Mendo and HumCo seems to be that the Green Rush is less rushed here, and Mendo is zoned into larger parcels and our population more settled.
TO ME, Southern Humboldt County borders on grotesque, with large numbers of stoned lurks hanging around Garberville and Redway, all of them cautionary tales in the flesh. Central Ukiah's permanent population of street people is positively Parisian compared to Garberville's.
UP IN THE HILLS of Southern Humboldt, west to Petrolia and east to I-5, there are grows everywhere, the whole of it comprising a kind of eco-disaster area. Not to be too Victorian about it, but remote pot gardens are not safe milieus for unaccompanied young women.
* * *
The following comments from Kym Kemp's essential Redheaded Blackbelt website tell the tale:
(1) I don’t like blaming victims, but just maybe you shouldn’t be working in an illegal industry full of assholes of various forms? Especially if you’re 14?
(2) Not only that, but women have basically cornered the market in the trim game. One of the last places you can make an easy 500 to 1000 bucks per day, without robbing someone, if you’re on your shit… This has happened out of sexual motivation, which they know, and exploit, but are surprised there are bad eggs out there taking advantage of them in return. This is a sad truth to the grow scene, remember Kaelin Meserve from Petrolia? Prime example!
(3) I don’t know that it’s happened entirely out of sexual motivation — the hiring primarily of females — if that’s what you were suggesting. I was around the grow/trim scene for a couple of decades and never saw it. I only saw women being hired because they are the fastest trimmers around… just like they’re the fastest typists. Also, women traditionally don’t stir up trouble the way men do; are tidier, more likely to be on time, will often bring their own food or offer to make something, drink less beer, etc. Less likely to come back and murder you later for money or bud, too. Sorry about the stereotypes, dudes, but yes, women in general make easier employees. I don’t mean “easy” in the sexual way. It’s all who you’re working for and with. I know there are some exploitative jerks out there, but I don’t think the very nature of women trimming is based on the opportunity for sex.
(4) Ya, most women, traditionally, have done things like sewing, etc where they have learned dexterity and therefore can trim faster. I hired men who were jewelry makers and they did well, So it’s not so much about the sex but how well you can work. I know some women who suck at trimming. As a female grower I find these articles quite offensive and with the wrong emphasis. I have seen more young women come and hook up with older dude growers who then leave their wives and families for the newer version. There are bad apples in every bunch. Sexual exploitation is rampant in every industry. Girls pass out drunk and are raped at colleges every day. I was raped as a teen by the pastor’s son in the church basement. For real. Are all pastor’s kids bad then?? I can think of at least 30 scenes where nothing like this ever happens. Plus after Gallegos was DA, the rules shifted a bit in that he really wanted people being abused at places where pot was growing to feel ok calling the cops without worry of being busted. There are bad guys out there for sure, I’m sorry that a 14 year old was even at a trim scene and that she had, seemingly, no mom or other older woman to talk to about this. Three trimmers out of how many tho? These stories are gonna come out the more pot is being talked about. Plus come on, we’ve dealt with the feds before, they need alternate reasons to ask for warrants from judges than just pot growing these days, they need something the public will support them busting, like sex abuse. That article last year about pot and human trafficking was exactly for that purpose. Focusing on Kailan Meserve made no sense in what they were discussing. The only bad scenes ive heard about are women from Thailand and Bulgaria being completely exploited, I truly hope the cops focus on those scenes rather than making it seem like our industry as a whole, promotes this. Guess what, there are women growers, land owners, etc. all over in the hills and we don’t stand for this behavior. Unfortunately contacting the police has resulted in very little help anyway. How many reported rapes actually are investigated well and taken to court with a guilty verdict outcome? Look it up; it’s sadly very few. Big cities have years of rape kits backlogged. I’m not getting why people think reporting these things to police is actually going to accomplish anything? Do tell, I would be glad to see somewhere where rapists are actually truly punished.
AG COMMISSIONER DIANE CURRY on Cannabis Hour tomorrow, Thursday, KZYX, 9 a.m.
Tomorrow is the official opening of the Mendocino Department of Agriculture's cannabis cultivation program. My guest tomorrow on the Cannabis Hour will be Diane Curry, Interim Agriculture Commissioner at the Mendocino County Ag Dept. Diane will talk about the application process and answer any questions you might have about enrollment in the program. That's tomorrow, Thursday, May 4, at 9 a.m., on The Cannabis Hour, on KZYX. Call us with questions or comments at 707 895-2448. If you miss the show live on-line at kzyx.org or on the radio, find the archived version at jukebox.kzyx.org.
SELECTED REMARKS from Pubic Expression at Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting:
Sheriff Tom Allman:
"Thank you for recognizing May as mental health month. I challenge you for the second time to put on the ballot this fall another mental health initiative. I challenge you. 66.23% of our County supports increasing funding for mental health. And I certainly want to see something done in this county. And you have the power. Three of you have the power to put it into the form of an initiative this fall. I would welcome the opportunity to work with you to improve the mental health services for all the citizens of our county, reducing the burden on other services such as emergency rooms and ambulances and of course law enforcement and fire departments -- improving the quality of life for our citizens and families of our county who definitely need it. So I thank you for recognizing Mental Health month and in advance for all four of you in advance for putting together a proposal to go on the ballot this fall."
(Applause from the audience.)
Board Chair John McCowen:
"Thank you Sheriff. You and I have actually had a bit of that discussion and part of the discussion I believe was that what ever might go on the ballot would need to be somewhat differen from what was on the ballot last time. I don't know that the board should simply sit down and write that. We can only do it in open session. There would need to be some sort of discussion about what this new item should be so — I see a thumbs up from the sheriff. So there might be a discussion and we'll see where that leads."
* * *
"Thank you board members for your time. With the county about to enter into negotiations with SEIU, I came here not to convince you. I want more money — everybody does! But I want to give you a little insight into what the world looks like from my particular perspective. I live in Fort Bragg. I supervise people in Fort Bragg and Willits. A year ago December I lost my two workers in Fort Bragg. It took one year to replace those positions. The cost of housing is so expensive that people cannot relocate to Fort Bragg. The people who ended up working for me, for you, happen to be from Fort Bragg. It took a while for that to happen. The cost of housing is such that it's just impossible for people to relocate to Fort Bragg. There are people who have bounced back to Willits or Ukiah because they moved to Fort Bragg, they accepted a position there, and they were unable to find affordable housing. It's really a problem. I'm a supervisor. I have to rent out two rooms in my house. I also have a second job and I'm not alone. So what do I do for the county? Employment and training was supposed to be the answer to welfare reform, to limited time on aid. So we have a limited time to take people from being dependent on what we used to call welfare, cash aid, to self-sufficiency. We do that in two years and we do it very well. This is not “them,” this is not “those people out there,” these are our neighbors who have just as much of a hard time affording housing as we do. And we get them to be self-sufficient. I go around Fort Bragg and see people who I helped when I was in the eligibility support unit. So I just want to let you know that in this situation this year that we did not have workers in Fort Bragg, the only alternative we had was to import people from Willits and have them commute and alternate to carry the caseload in Fort Bragg. It was very awkward. It was time intensive. It places a huge extra burden on my workers and it was costly! I just want to give you that perspective and I can't say what exactly the solution is but this is the situation as it exists now. Thank you very much."
* * *
ED NOTE: According to Transparent California Ana Lucas is an Employment and Training Supervisor for Mendocino County who earned about $44k per year gross plus union benefits in 2016. This translates to around $28k per year take-home.
PS. We attempted to look up home rental costs for Fort Bragg and discovered (1) there are lots of rentals and (2) they are “vacation rentals” for big money, short stays. There were a few Fort Bragg Rentals on Craigslist but only one that would be suitable for a family and it was $2200 per month, which translates to about the same as Ms. Lucas’s take-home pay.
I'VE NEVER UNDERSTOOD the appeal of these alleged funny guys like Jon Stewart, Colbert, Bill Maher, Letterman, and so on. Their smirking self-regard, smug little ironies, safe shots at big shots, and repulsive deadpan mugging. Colbert, of all these people, at least had the nerve to go so far over the line the following remark on live tv might finish him off. If we're lucky.
HERE'S PENCIL HEAD talking about Trump: "Sir, you attract more skinheads than free Rogaine." Thud. "You have more people marching against you than cancer." Groan. "You talk like a sign-language gorilla who got hit in the head." Ugh.
THE GUY'S gag writers are, what, fourth graders? Then the closer, the one that ought to get this appallingly unfunny character off our public view finders forever — "In fact, the only thing your mouth is good for is being Vladimir Putin's c--k holster."
YEARS AGO, Barry Bonds, a great baseball player before steroids but a chemical freak of no interest to this fan after steroids, was asked who made him laugh. Barry was stumped. He just stared until the guy started rattling off tv programs. No reaction until the guy got to "Seinfeld," and Bonds said, "I thought you meant funny?" Bonds went way up in my estimation with that one.
SO, who do you think is funny? Off the top, I think Dave Chappelle and Chris Rock are very funny. George Carlin was funny. Farther back, the great Lenny Bruce, early Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor were funny. I think Trump, looked at purely from a comic perspective, is hilarious.
THE WOMAN WHO STOOD UP TO JIM JONES, a reader writes:
"Rena Lynn Moore moved to Willits in the early seventies with one of her three daughters. She had a son also who later joined her after being released from a federal prison for stocks and bonds fraud. The story was he took a fall for the mob, who knows…? He’s dead now. Rena’s husband had recently died and she sold her house in what is now Silicon Valley and went back to the land. She bought property east of Willits.
"I met her while a communal group I had just left was negotiating to build her a house. One of the guys had hooked up with Rena’s daughter, thus the in for the job.
"She eventually hired these guys led by a Jim Jones type character; he did not work, did not pay his workers and fleeced her for thousands. A lawsuit followed which she won but the money was gone. The guy eventually ended up in jail for another bogus deal, rumors were when released he relocated out of the area.
"With a significant sum of money gone she spliced together a crew, which included me and finished up her house. Soon after she went to work for The Willits News.
"While at TWN she met and married Ed Moore who was the brother of one of the owners. He was well off so all her financial issues were soon over, hence her new name, Rena Lynn Moore.
"She wrote primarily personal interest stuff but when Jim Jones came along she seemed to lock on to his scam, maybe because of what she had gone through earlier with the house. At first she seemed to admire Jones, but that changed quickly. The influence he seemed to hold with County officials and people in general gave her concern, as did the fanatical followers at the Redwood Valley facility. She only wrote a few stories about the guy, but clearly he was not pleased by the coverage.
"Someone did visit or call The Willits News with seemingly threatening innuendos. I remember her saying she was concerned for her safety. Jones moved, the stories stopped, and Rena moved on.
"She wrote the history of several founding families of Little Lake Valley, and I think she published a book about it also. The Chronicle picked up a few of her historical pieces for Sunday publication, too. Like I said, lots of local color.
"She was a mover and shaker for that time; I loved her like a mother. She was always kind, generous and encouraging. For an emotionally lost orphan kid like me she came along at exactly the right time. A year or two after marrying Ed Moore she left the paper and traveled the world with her husband. After a decade of marriage Ed died, Rena sold the property east of Willits and moved to a luxury condo in San Francisco where she died a few years later. I don’t know if this is what you wanted, but it’s what I got…"
ED NOTE: We're heaping gratitude on you, my lad. Rena Lynn Moore did what no other journalist in the county did. She told the truth about Jim Jones.
* * *
MOORE, Rena Lynn (Jowers) - July 13, 1917 - December 16, 2004
Rena passed away on Dec. 16, 2004 in Walnut Creek, CA. Born in Texas she moved to California in 1950. She lived in Palo Alto until 1973 where she raised her children. She moved to Willits in 1973 and was the assistant editor of the Willits News until she retired to Rossmoor in Walnut Creek. She was active in the Camera Club and the Hiking Club. After moving to Kensington in 1997 she continued her hobby with the Berkeley Camera Club until a stroke in 1999. She is lovingly survived by three of her four children; Rodney Blackmore of Seattle, Lory Stevenson (Jim) of Kensington, and Hunter Noble (John) of Alamo. Her eldest daughter Bridget pre-deceased her in 1992. She outlived her three husbands. She is also survived by eight grandchildren and six great grandchildren. She will be remembered for her brilliant mind, her humor and her devotion to her family and the great Cosmos. A Memorial service will be held January 22, 2005 at the SRV Methodist Church in Alamo, CA at 2:00 PM. For further info please call 510/558-8676.
(The San Francisco Chronicle)
FRONTIERS OF FREE ENTERPRISE: Tuesday, the Supervisors spent an hour talking about handicap access to dope gro greenhouses, this hard on the heels of a long, brow-furrowing discussion on the theme of, Are "bud and breakfasts" just another bed and breakfast business or a medical marijuana dispensary? This country is beyond doomed.
CATCH OF THE DAY, May 3, 2017
LUIS AYALA-ORTIZ, Ukiah. Failure to appear.
MARTIN BAKER, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Vandalism, probation revocation.
ROBERT BOSCHE, Clearlake/Ukiah. Probation revocation.
MARKEESE BRANTLEY, Ukiah. Domestic corporal injury, parole violation, probation revocation.
MICHAEL CAIN, Laytonville. Ex-felon with firearm, ammo possession by prohibited person, firearm ID alteration.
MATTHEW FOSTER, Willits. Probation revocation.
THOMAS GALINDO, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Drunk in public, probation revocation.
ADAN GARCIA, Talmage. Drunk in public.
DONALD HANSON, Laytonville. DUI-drugs, probation revocation.
JANICE HOAGLEN-WRIGHT, Covelo/Mendocino. Failure to appear.
ERIC NORTON, Kelseyville/Ukiah. Failure to appear, probation revocation.
TIMOTHY PALMER, Willits. Drunk in public. (Booking photo not available.)
ANDREW RADABAUGH, Hopland. DUI.
RALPH RUMBLE, Willits. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, mandatory supervision sentencing.
NICHOLAS TOW, Ukiah. Pot possession for sale, pot sales, probation revocation.
LEONARD WHIPPLE JR., Covelo. Assault with deadly weapon causing great bodily injury, battery.
WHO GIVES A DAMN ABOUT NORTH KOREA?
by Clancy Sigal
There is a chance that we could end up having a major, major conflict with North Korea. Absolutely”
“The time for strategic patience (with North Korea) is over”
– Vice Prez Pence
“War against US imminent”
– North Korean statement after another of its missiles fail
I graduated from college on June 30, 1950 the day North Korean communists invaded capitalist South Korea with Red Chinese and Stalin’s help. As the civil war dragged on miserably the newly liberated Chinese sent in ‘volunteer’ soldiers and the Russians secretly flew MIGs against U.S. jets in what Pres. Truman called a “UN police action”.
Both North and South Koreans were ferocious, hating fighters in a proxy Cold War between the USA and Russia.
We forget, but Koreans don’t, that Japan “owned” Korea as a semi slave colony until the end of WW2. The core of North Korea’s tough army was composed of long time anti Japanese guerrillas.
The 1950s war, ended in a three year stalemate where it began on the 38th Parallel splitting the peninsula in half.
The country was awash in the blood of massacres, executions, and no quarter to the enemy including slackers on your own side. (Friends who fought later in Vietnam tell me that of all the Allied units the Koreans were the most savagely unforgiving.)
In seesaw battles the Communists made a point of executing intellectuals, and the South Koreans mowed down many of their own people suspected of “tendencies”.
Curtis Le May’s bombers pretty much destroyed North Korea until there were no more targets to hit. The south was devastated; the north a napalmed wasteland. All in the name of “reunification” by one side or another.
At the time, argued some leftists and the independent journalist I.F. Stone, the south was as guilty of aggression as the north and – winked at by our State Dept. – may have fired the first shot. Who cares now?
Americans lost 33,000 soldiers; almost 3 million dead Korean civilians and hundreds of thousands of troops on both sides.
What’s amazing is that from a ruined landscape the North Korean prison-state has in a mere half century managed to become a sophisticated, industrialized nuclear threat.
Imagine yourself as a U.S. soldier on duty at the Armistice Line or an ordinary citizen of congested Seoul within easy artillery range of Kim Jong-Un’s revenge.
What does it prove? That if you starve and terrorize your own people, mismanage or provoke famines, and sustain at gunpoint a culture of betrayal, modern miracles are possible – as indeed the Soviets also proved in the 1930s.
And you end up on a Pyongyang balcony applauding yourself while lovingly caressing a mini-atom bomb that fits into the nose cone of – lets hope not – an ICBM. He’s a weirdo all right. Who kills off his rivals with an anti-aircraft gun?
But how sane are our own generals Trump appointed to crucial posts? Especially now when his U.S. field commanders are off the leash and the Navy Dept. sends its Asian task force to the wrong ocean?
Our problem is and always has been our generals, from blundering Courtney Hodges’s WW2 Hurtgen Forest disaster to Doug MacArthur’s demanding to nuke the “Chinese hordes” to Vietnam’s obsessively bodycounting Westmoreland to priapic Petraeus in Afghanistan.
Now our lives are in hands of generals like Secy of Defense “Mad Dog” Mattis (“It’s fun to kill some people”); Guantamo’s harsh warden John Kelly as homeland chief; and as #1 military advisor Herb McMasters (“the Vietnam war was lost on the pages of the NY Times and on campuses”).
And of course in the grasp of Kim Jong-Un who in the nuclear poker game has the hole card.
(Clancy Sigal is a screenwriter and novelist. His latest book is Black Sunset.)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
Economics as we know it is racketeering. None of what goes on in that criminal syndicate makes any logical sense because it is basically theft, fraud, and illusion. Somehow the criminals have got all of us using their terminology to explain “economic” events: bubbles, crashes, etc. To me, bubbles are the gathering of suckers into the illusion of making money from investment, and crashes are paydays for the rich, when they orchestrate the quick removal of money from the suckers. The rich get their paydays every ten years or whenever there are these crashes. In the meantime, they do their stealing on daily basis, continuing their grooming of the new crop of suckers, destroying countries and stealing their gold and resources. Their theft is getting to be more in the open, stealing pensions, passing legislation so that banks can seize depositors’ funds for their next payday, calling it a bail-in rather than bail-out. Whatever it’s called, it’s the rich simply fucking taking the money that belongs to the suckers. The suckers let them do all this, because, well, they are suckers, stupid beyond belief. It’s not economics, it’s crime.
WOODLANDS WILDLIFE--HUMANE EXCLUSION PRESENTATION
Woodlands Wildlife will be giving a free presentation on Humane Exclusion--how to get and keep wildlife out of our gardens, crawlspaces, attics, walls and homes in a humane way (i.e. without using poisons or traps). The program will be at the Mendocino Middle School library on Little Lake Road in Mendocino from 1-2:30 pm, Saturday May 20. This is a program for adults, and no live animals (except humans) will be present. FREE--we aren't selling anything, this is a true public service program.
Please forward this to your neighbors and friends.
Last spring a woman let her dog out in the yard at night to do it's business and the dog ran straight at a mama raccoon and her two youngsters who were busy looking for worms in the garden. A great argument followed and the woman ran out to try to rescue her dog. In the process she was bitten by either the raccoon or the dog, then there was a trip to the emergency room that involved stitches and rabies shots. We have many new residents in the area who are not familiar with appropriate interaction with their wild neighbors. This program will cover how to interact appropriately with them, how to avoid interacting with them, how to exclude them from our gardens and home spaces, and how to get them out of our walls, crawl spaces, attics, etc. All local species will be addressed--bats, raccoons, opossums, skunks, deer, mountain lions, weasels, mice, rats, etc. Trapping is not only cruel, it is illegal, and this time of year trapping will involve leaving a den or nest of babies to starve (noisily) to death.
To all of you who have an immediate problem--keep in mind that as the babies grow up, mothers will move them to a new, clean home. If you can just wait a few days or weeks, the problem may solve itself. Otherwise--this program is for you.
Ronnie James, Mendocino Coast, WoodlandsWildlife@mcn.org
BY GUMBO, WE'LL GET IT YET!
Broadband Alliance meeting this Friday 5-5-17
Our next Broadband Alliance meeting will be this Friday, May 5th at 10 am at the usual place of the Community Foundation in Ukiah. The agenda is attached, and you can also find it on our website. I hope to see you there.
I also wanted to provide a few Broadband updates:
Supervisor Hamburg was elected Chair of the North Bay North Coast Broadband Consortium Oversight Committee at the recent Oversight Committee meetings on 4/27.
AT&T is hosting a digital training workshop in partnership with the Redwood Coast Senior Center on May 12th (Friday) as part of their "California Digital You Tour" <https://engage.att.com/californianews/blog/?PostId=2198>. The workshop aims to help older adults learn how to better use and make the most of tablets and smartphones, and discover how broadband and mobile technology can help improve their lives.
They are also looking for 2 volunteers to help with this training as well. Please consider if you have a few hours to help. Contact Rhuenette Alums (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Debi Barros (email@example.com) to either sign up or to help volunteer
Check out "Crossing the Digital Divide <http://www.mendocinobroadband.org/crossing-the-digital-divide-by-joseph-feigon/>" for articles by Joe Feigon to help you navigate the confusing online world and make sense of various topics. New articles are posted almost every week.
Trish Steel <www.MendocinoBroadband.org> 707-354-3224
OVER 200 DELTA ACTIVISTS SLAM DELTA PLAN AMENDMENTS AT STEWARDSHIP COUNCIL MEETING
by Dan Bacher
Over 200 Delta residents, including family farmers, anglers, environmental justice advocates, homeowners, business owners and elected officials, converged on Sacramento on Friday, April 28, to show their strong opposition to Delta Plan amendments that push Governor Jerry Brown’s Twin Tunnels as the “preferred alternative” for new Delta Conveyance.
During the public comment period, every speaker except one slammed the Delta Tunnels project for its multitude of flaws. The only person who spoke in support of the current Delta Plan amendments was a representative of of the California Department of Water Resources (DWR).
The Delta Reform Act of 2009 created the controversial Delta Stewardship Council (DSC) with the mandate of implementing the “co-equal goals” of providing a more reliable water supply for California AND protecting, restoring, and enhancing the Delta ecosystem.
Formerly chaired by Capitol political insider Phil Isenberg, who also chaired the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative Blue Ribbon Task Force to create so-called “marine protected areas” on the Central Coast and the Delta Vision Blue Ribbon Task Force, the Council is currently chaired by Randy Fiorini, who presided over the meeting.
Members of the Stockton-based Restore the Delta, the Save the California Delta Alliance (STCDA) out of Discovery Bay, North Delta Cares and other Delta and environmental groups said the proposed amendments “lack basic analytical documentation,” such as a needs assessment for the California WaterFix, a water supply analysis, and cost-benefits analysis.
They also criticized the proposed amendments for failing to consider environmental justice, anti-discrimination, and human right to water issues in their planning and scientific documentation.
Bob Wright, counsel for Friends of the River, criticized the Council for putting the proverbial cart before the horse by including the Delta Tunnels as the “preferred alternative” in the Delta Plan.
“The Delta Plan should be done as a whole. Conveyance is the last piece of puzzle not first,” he emphasized.
“We have heard today it is complicated problem. The DSC scientists said there is much uncertainty and controversy about the project among the scientists. So, it should not go forward given this uncertainty, on conveyance at this time,” he said.
Delta farmer Russell Van Loben Sels blasted the Delta Stewardship Council for “exceeding its legislated mandate by choosing to promote a project, rather than creating a framework to guide projects proposed for the Delta."
Retired sportfishing boat Captain Jim Cox, President of the California Striped Bass Association, discussed how the Delta Tunnels would destroy the sensitive Delta ecosystem, along with salmon, steelhead, striped bass and other fisheries that use the estuary as a nursery.
“Delta water exports have compromised the entire delta ecosystem by effecting the lowest species on the food chain,” he said. “A once-thriving delta system now has adult fish at half the size they were, even just a decade ago. The tunnels plan will increase this effect to the point where no fish local or migratory will be able to exist.”
On a similar note, Janet McCleery, President of the Save the California Delta Alliance (STCDA). pointed out how 3.5 million acre feet of water is the maximum amount of water that can be removed from the Delta system “before it breaks.”
“The current system isn’t working because the exporters continue to export too much water and the only way to stop them is to slap them with an injunction,” she said. “The ‘fix’ is reducing exports, reducing reliance on the Delta, and managing exports based on the flow requirements. I see in the amendment wording about adopting the flow recommendation, but you talk about weighing in favor of the exporters?”
Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Executive Director of Restore the Delta, called on the Council to eliminate the proposed Delta Plan amendment that promotes the California WaterFix, the most recent name for the Delta Tunnels Project, as the “preferred alternative” for new Delta Conveyance.
“The Council needs to follow the legislative mandate that grants it, its authority, and the recent court order to revise the Delta Plan to include measurable targets to achieve reduced Delta reliance before approving the Delta tunnels,” said Barrigan-Parrilla.
Along with creating a plethora of environmental problems for the San Francisco Bay-Delta, she said “disenfranchised communities in San Joaquin County and the other four Delta counties will also suffer the impacts of the Delta Tunnels.”
She noted that generations of Filipino Americans in Stockton have endured “decades of neglect” brought on by other infrastructure projects, and fear that the Delta Tunnels will bring about “more of the same for their community.”
Community educator, Nikki Chan, with Stockton’s Little Manila Foundation, pointed out:
“Communities are never rebuilt, regardless of the promises made by officials, and the people left behind are the ones who get to deal with negative environmental impacts. In the case of the Delta tunnels, our community members will lose access to fishing areas, marinas, and boating ramps. After construction we learned from the environmental documents that our community members will be left with degraded water quality and contaminated fisheries.”
Delta advocates and the co-authors of a joint letter sent to the DSC on April 18 asked the DSC to consider other alternatives for improving surface storage, performance measures, and conveyance—including replacing the outdated fish screens at the existing water pumps near Tracy with state of the art facilities—without increasing environmental degradation to the San Francisco Bay-Delta Estuary.
To achieve these results, RTD and the Environmental Justice Coalition for Water (EJWC) recommend that the DSC include environmental justice and public health chapters in the Delta Plan’s Environmental Impacts Report.
In fact, the letter points out that the terms “environmental justice,” “human right to water, and “anti-discrimination” cannot event be found in the reviewed DSC documents:
“State of California environmental justice, human right to water, and anti-discrimination policy requirements apply to planning activities and decisions by all state agencies. We searched planning and scientific documents prepared by the Delta Stewardship Council (DSC) concerning Delta Plan amendments (DPAs) for performance measures andconveyance, storage and operations. We used the terms 1 ‘environmental justice,’ ‘human right to water,’ and various permutations of ‘anti-discrimination.” None of these terms are found in the DSC planning and scientific documents reviewed for this letter.”
In my review of the revised amendment documents that were released at the meeting, I could not find any of these terms either.
The groups also requested that the DSC pursue a “reduced exports alternative” to comply with the Delta Plan’s primary goal of reduced reliance on water exports from the ecologically impaired Bay-Delta estuary. Once abundant Central Valley steelhead, Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon, Delta and longfin smelt and other fish populations have collapsed in recent years, due to massive water exports out of the Delta, combined with decreasing water quality and poor management of upstream reservoirs by the state and federal governments.
Speakers emphasized how the Delta Tunnels would be very lucrative for contractors and consultants, but would be of no benefit to Delta communities.
“For consultants and contractors there is a lot of money to be made here,” said Bob Wright. “But this is not a game for the people of the Delta. This is their lives, their homes, their businesses, their farms. They deserve you taking the time to do the work—the necessary analyses before deciding to choose dual conveyance over through-Delta conveyance.”
”I am confused about the Council’s interpretation of the co-equal goals,” summed up Roger Mammon, Secretary of Restore the Delta. “I cannot find one positive aspect for the Delta. It appears co-equal means we get a double shaft and the people south of the Delta get our water.”
A bus chartered by the Save The Delta Alliance brought 50 members from Discovery Bay to the meeting and as many more STCDA members drove from Discovery Bay, other South Delta communities (Bethel Island, Antioch, Oakley, etc.) and some from as far away as San Jose and San Francisco to show their opposition to the tunnels. Many of the STCDA members — about half the people gathered at the meeting — wore white “Save the Delta / No Tunnels / No Gates” tee shirts, according to McCleery.
Michael Brodsky, lawyer for the STCDA, said, “Since 2010, the Delta Stewardship Council has refused to do their job. Their job is to find solutions to the problem that the way we now export water from the Delta to supply California cities and farms harms the Delta and makes our state’s water supply unreliable.”
“From 2010 to 2013, the Council spent thousands of hours developing a useless Delta Plan because they refused to address harmful exports,” he stated. “For three years, they said ‘the BDCP will do it for us; the BDCP will fix everything. We sued them and asked the Court to order them to do their job—which is to address harmful exports, not bow down to the BDCP. The judge agreed with us. The judge struck down the Delta Plan and ordered the Council to try again.
”Now the Council says, well, the BDCP has looked at all of this for years and years now and what they want--the twin tunnels—is good enough for us. No need for us to look at this, it has all been done for us,” said Brodsky.
“They just don’t get it. The status quo, a failed tunnel project, doesn’t cut it. Delta Council, please do your job and find solutions to save our Delta. That is our message,” Brodsky concluded.
The public comment period followed over 1-½ hours of presentations on the amendments by DSC staff and discussion of the amendments by the Council members. Many members of the audience held up small placards that said “Disagree” on one side and “Agree” on the other side in response to the comments of DSC members and staff as they discussed the amendments.
After hearing the public comment, the Delta Stewardship Council members briefly discussed the amendments, but made no decision on the agenda item. They will review the amendments at their next meeting.
The Delta Tunnels would divert Sacramento River water through two massive 35-mile long tunnels under the Delta for use by agribusiness interests on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California water agencies. They would not only hasten the extinction of Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon, Central Valley steelhead, Delta and longfin smelt, green sturgeon and other fish species, but they would also imperil the salmon and steelhead populations on the Trinity and Klamath rivers, according to scientists and fish advocates.
Note: I will update this article with more quotes and information later.